How do I get my 3 year old to go to bed without a tantrum? - FamilyEducation
How do I get my 3 year old to go to bed without a tantrum?
12/01/2011 at 18:01 PM

Every night I try to get my 3 year old to go to bed and it is a huge battle. We end up watching her taped shows until I cant take anymore or she falls asleep. I want to get her to bed so that she is in bed at a decent time and so that I may watch my shows. But whenever I try to get her to bed without the shows and Im tired and wanna go to bed myself, she screams and throws a fit until my mother comes to the scene and once again I am the bad parent. What do I do? Ive tried reading books- no good, singing lulabys- no good, snuggling-no good. I dont know what to do.

Sleep is a big problem for a lot of kids. One of my daughters discovered that her daughter fell asleep better if she had a nap in the afternoon, too. When I was doing day-care, I would have a time in the afternoon when the kids had to remain quiet on their mats/beds for all of Beethoven's 1st movement of his 1st symphony--it's about 10 minutes long. They could get up when the music stopped, but they usually slept. I'd wake them after an hour. Those that I had at night, I also used the music for bedtime: They had their snack & drink, brushed their teeth, had story, prayers, and went potty, and I asked them if they needed anything else. Then I put on the music and told them that they were to stay in bed until the music stopped. I would check on them after about 15 minutes. Once one boy was still awake--turned out he just needed to chat about some trouble he was having. I put on the music again and he went right off.
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28322

The only thing I worry about is--what happens when those kids are all grown-up and driving down the freeway, and Beethoven's 1st Symphony comes on the radio--they might fall asleep!
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28323

Lol! I dont know if they would fall asleep! The only problem is that my daughter just likes to dance to music. It doesnt matter what type of music. I dont know. I do have a good singing voice since I studied music in college. I guess i could try singing again. But It didnt work before. I will try again!
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28325

Is there a sibling, too? That would make things a little more complicated.
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28326

No no sibling. She is my only child.
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28327

One of the things that made my strategy work is that the children could trust that if they weren't able to sleep, they could come out. It made it so they could relax and just wait for the music to end. That wouldn't work with you singing.
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28328

I dont have a stereo in my room to play any music. I dont have a tv in there either. So I can only read to her or sing to her.
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28329

Oh, that stinks.
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28330

Yep!
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28331

I am a Mom of four kids aging from 11 months to almost 8 years old. Two eldest are girls and the two youngest are boys. The best thing that I have learned over the years with discipline is to be strict and I guess sort of short with kids when you are giving them direction. When it comes to bed time I wouldn't linger to much. Read them a story or sing a song while doing that give them your full attention. After book I usually let them ask me a couple questions like what was your dogs name when you were little etc lol. Then I say one more question then bed time. They will try to keep you in the room for ever but just get up and turn off the light after a kiss and then leave hall light on. Leave the room right away. Don't him and haw at all. You giving them room to talk and toy with you. Let them freak out for 5 minutes or so, then stand in door way and say, I love you and it's bed time goodnight. leave again right away. don't linger. It will be hard for a week or so.
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28345

Ok I guess I can try that. But my daughter screams bloody murder at the top of her lungs and wakes up the whole house. Then my parents, usually my mother, comes to her rescue. And Im the bad person once again.
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28346

Oh, maybe that's why your daughter won't sleep because there is someone that will rescue her if she screams enough. Tell other people in the house you are doing an experiment and they can't interupt you if you are going to be successful. I think your daughter is testing out her control over you and other family members. It is not easy when the kids have tantrums. Every parent goes through it. Try to stay as calm as possible or your child will know she's making headway and will continue to be persistant and keep screaming. It will take a week or so.
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My kids are 11 months 4, 6 and 8. The two oldest sleep in the same room. My six year old was the one who threw the most tantrums. I prepared for bedtime by putting her in the bath at about 7:15pm and letting her play in there. Then p.j's teeth brushed, story. Once they now routine is routine they will just expect it every night. I don't do bath every night. When she is super hyper I can see that if I don't let her relax in the bath it will be a long night. She used to freak out so much there would be tears and boogers everwhere. So, I started bedtime earlier and kept the routine.
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28350

Ok. I will try Pjs, story, and bedtime around 7:30pm. Then I will just make her stay in bed, even when she cries. Will she really get the idea in a week and stop screaming and such? I hope it takes a week. Now when you say a week do you mean 5 days or 7 days?
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28351

Honestly it's been a few years since I had that much of a problem. I know now that I can see it coming when my daughter gets really hyper at 6pm or so I think, ok it's going to be a bath night. I have daycare kids and the 2 year old that I watch took about 7 days to adjust to my rules.lol. They smell your weekness. That's why you can't linger in the same room going on about how they have to lie down blah blah. Just keep reminding her at 7pm that she's going to be good and go to sleep. then at bedtime do the routine and leave quick. Come back 5 or 10 minutes later and say you love her it's time to go to bed goodnight. then leave again. Come back maybe one or two more times. tell her it's ok she needs sleep so she can play tomorrow. say goodnight and leave quick
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28352

Good Luck and just think you will have mommy time soon!
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28353

I hope so. But I dont know how to do this without my parents butting in.
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28354

Sucess!!!! I gave her a bath right after dinner and she played with my mothers IPad for a while while I did dishes. Then I sat down while she played for a while and then she drank some juice and fell asleep! And its only almost 8pm! I hope this routine works for the next few days!
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28355

Wow, that's amazing. I'm still putting my kids to sleep lol. Hopefully it works out just as great tomorrow.
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28356

YAY!
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28361

Give the child a choice. All choices include going to bed. Choice 1 get a book read then to bed. Choice 2 a glass of water, a book read and then to bed. What ever then to bed. etc Three choices and enough. Two is best. Then stick with it. A threeyear old crying for a short time is not the end of the world for him/her or you. If all else fails, lay with the child for a while before getting up. Do not sleep the night with the child.
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28426

The first thing you need to do is tell your mother not to intervene...and don't give in to tantrums. The only reason a child throws a tantrum is to get what they want, and since it works every time she does it, she's going to keep doing it. Be firm, after all, she's your child not your mother's. I have a three year old too. When we got into a routine it got much better. We switch off tv at 4pm, she plays or paints a bit while i cook, we eat at 7.30, take a shower right after, she has her evening bottle, brush teeth, two books and then light out. She falls asleep in my bed and then i put her in the cot. It takes maybe 15 minutes for her to sleep and she doesnt have an afternoon nap, i eliminqted it because she wouldn't want to sleep at night. Until she got used to me moving her to her cot i used to warn her about it, and reassure her that if she needed mummy i would be there in a flash (im a light sleeper) hope this helps
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29151

my children are 19 to 14 years old now. i did the same bed time routine for al three. i read them a story hugs and kisses then lights out. if they would throw a fit and continue to get up, i would take them back to their bed each time. when you do this you dont say anything but, goodnight. you may have to do this over and over for a few nights, but eventually they stop testing you and they know you wont give in so after story and goodnights they will fall right to sleep. promise it works and its better if you have it down before they are school age. my oldest has a two year old we done the same routine with her and she goes straight to bed allready at this age every night with no fuss.
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29171

Some children are very problematic and take time to leave their habit of throwing tantrums every now and then. Just leave it, they would improve with time. Otherwise the more attention they are given the more they throw tantrums.
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29982

I am a mum of a 1 year old and 4 year old they share a room. My 1 year old goes to bed at 5pm and my eldest of 4 gets an extra hour till 6pm. I routined these times from birth and they wake up at 7am. Tantrums= dont rise above it aka dont shout back just walk away dont make eye contact and evetually the tantrums disappear. Bedtime= 2 things ur child asks for and no more. Shouting = dont shout back cause it shows ur child uv lost control and they do it for attention just walk away. Structure= a chart aka monday for 15 mins tidy a few toys away tues a little hoovering. Face to face= to get ur to listen to u be in the same room face to face with a positive look and talk to ur child. Do not shout from another room they never listen they shut off. Hopefully these are good tips for anyone with toddlers.
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