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    10yr Old Can't Sleep Without Me
    avatar
    Working_Mother posted:
    Our 10yr old is having trouble sleeping in his own bed. He is an only child and recently (4months ago) Dad was asked to take a supervisor position on 3rd shift. He was sleeping in his room before this, and now refuses to sleep without me close by. He asks me to sit in his room, or lay next to him until he falls asleep. He is a pretty calm kid, but when asked to sleep alone in his room, he cries until he becomes physically sick. I often times, give up and allow him to sleep with me, hoping it is a stage that he will grow out of. We have tried buying new bedding and decorating his room and allowing him to take the dog to bed with him. Nothing seems to work. We are in a very safe neighborhood, and quiet home. I just don't understand why he is so bothered at night. I have tried talking about it with him, sitting in his room until he falls asleep, sitting in the hall and moving slowly each night farther away and closer to my room, playing music for him, allowing him to watch a tv show hoping he will fall asleep, singing to him, even giving up and grounding him if he doesn't lay down in his own bed. I'm lost for ideas. Please help give me ideas to build his confidence and get him back in his own room!
     
    avatar
    momuv4girls responded:
    Sounds like he has become anxious since his Dad is not home at night

    You need to be calm, firm and loving.
    I would start off by discussing your plan with him.
    Tell your son, that as of tonight you will spend 20 minutes with him at bedtime - period, that's it.
    Lay with him, read to him, or whatever.
    Then after 20 minutes, kiss him and reassure him that the house is locked and you're all safe.
    When he comes in your room, you remind him that you already spent time with him, and he needs to get back in his bed. When he fusses, cries, yells, or whatever, you stay calm and ignore him.
    You may even have to lock your bedroom door.
    You need to be consistent, because children are so smart - if you give in once, they learn that if they fuss long enough, or up the ante, you'll eventually give in.....so don't.

    Does he have a nightlight in his room?
    His Dad could also have a talk with him - let his son know that the house is safely locked every night, and reassure your son that just because he isn't home doesn't mean something bad will happen.

    Take care,
    -Kathleen


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