Refuses to Sleep in Bed.

Updated on May 26, 2007
K.E. asks from Virginia Beach, VA
6 answers

My 8 year old is refusing to sleep in her own bed. Except for having to make sure that every door in the hallway was shut, & that the hallway light was on, & that her pillow was on the corner of the bed closet to the door, she was FINE sleeping in her own bed until my mother moved in with us. My mom has some medical issues, so my husband & i decided to move her in with us. We even moved to a bigger house so that my mom could have her own room. My 8 y/o had her own room right across the hall from her, & then my 2 younger children shared a room upstairs. From DAY 1 in our new house, my 8 y/o would freak out when it was time for bed. She would cry hysterically. We figured that we would try putting her in the room with her siblings to see if it made any difference.(there's PLENTY of room - their room is huge!) On several occasions I could get her calm enough to fall asleep in bed, but within an hour she'd be up crying again. We'd get her back asleep & then again in another hour or so, she'd be up. If she got up after we fell asleep she would sneak downstairs & into my mom's bed, or into my bed if my husband's underway. And because of some of the meds that my mom is taking, she doesn't wake up to my daughter crawling into her bed. I explained to her that I don't care WHERE she sleeps, just as long as it's not in my bed or Nana's bed. I am at my wits end with her & trying to get her to sleep in her own bed. I've tried rewards, I've tried "punishment" by taking away things. Nothing seems to be working!

Has anyone ever experienced this before with their child? I keep reading that children's sleep problems are either targeted by stress or a medical issue. I doubt it's a medical issue...being that she can go to sleep in a matter of minutes as soon as she gets in my mother's bed. It's just driving me crazy that she goes completely nuts when I tell her it's time for bed!!! HELP!!!

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

More Answers



answers from Lynchburg on

K., Kudos to you and your Hubby for serving our country.
I know what its like as a child to move. We did it several times when I was small. And the first thing I can tell you I think is a problem for your daughter is a bigger house. If she was in a smaller house and moved to a bigger one it probably doesnt feel as warm and comfortable. Just like a baby entering this big world. When they are new born we wrap them tight in blankets and coddle them close to calm them. Kinda the same concept. Is her room close to yours? Maybe try a canapy to cosy up her space some. She is going through alot right now like the others said with Dad gone, new home, Nana moving in and ill. Maybe get school counseler to talk to her to see whats bugging her most. In any event the school teacher should also know alot of changes have been made in her life.
Good luck, D.



answers from Savannah on

Wow, what a lot for an 8yr old to take in all at once. It sounds like there is definitely something bothering her. Have you sat her down and asked non leading questions? Instead of asking are you worried about Nana’s health, ask if there is something bothering her about Nana. Is she close to her Nana? If so then she might be scared of death since you said she has medical issues. Or does Nana require any special medical equipment like oxygen, medications that use needles? She may find that stuff scary. Since my daughter was 6 she has been worried about me or her step dad dying and where do we go and what would happen to her....etc. And I know deployments don't help either. My hubby is a Marine (currently a recruiter for a few more months) and even his long hours with this job make it hard on her.

Just try to sit her down and find out what has her stressing so bad. In the mean time maybe make a compromise that she can sleep on the couch or on Nana's bedroom floor when she wakes up. When mine doesn't or can't sleep in her own bed she is allowed to sleep on the couch. Which she has been there the past 3 mornings! I know she is starting to worry about going to her bio dad's in a few weeks and the chance that we might be moving while she is gone has her very worried that we won't find her when it's time for her to come home.

Hang in there!! It will get better!!




answers from Charlotte on

Hi, Maybe your Mom's sickness is taking a toll on your daughter. Sit down and have a talk with her. With your Mom being sick & her Dad away living in a new house--I would say it definitely sounds like stress. Maybe she can even speak to a counselor.
I have always had problems w/ my son. He is almost 8. How I finally got him to sleep in his own room was by letting him sleep on my hard floor. I would just let him sleep in a sleeping bag with a pillow. It took a long time but one night he finally got fed up and told me he wanted to sleep in his own room. We make sure he has a light on in the hall, door slightly open, closets tightly shut, music on low. I don't know if this would work considering she might sneak with your Mom again. But maybe she can sleep on your Mom's floor.--Or maybe she needs to be with her siblings again & move your Mom into her old room.
I hope this helps. Good luck with everything. And a big thanks to your hubbie for serving our country.



answers from Raleigh on

Does your daughter have a close realationship with your mother. maybe she scences that your mom is sick and is worried about her, or moving did she leave friends behind. Eight is a tough age, they are alot smarter than we think, sit her down alone and ask her if there is anything bothering her, is there something that is upsetting her, and so on, if she says nothing at first, or leave me alone, there is something that is upsetting her. Good luck.



answers from Myrtle Beach on

I agree with the other ladies. She's moved into a new environment, has an additional family member living in the home, with lots of health issues, and her Dad is at sea. As a school nurse, I can tell you that when children have a lot of changes in their lives that cause stress, the tend to regress to an earlier state of childhood. Maybe in the back of her mind she wonders why she can't get that comfort and safety at night in the bed with you, and that makes her want it even more.Even though we as adults have our reasons for this. Maybe allowing her to sleep with you until she has that sense of safety and comfort back will help her get over whatever she is going through. I would also engage her in a non leading conversation about what she may be going through. Children not only listen to every word we say about what is going on at home, but they also percieve things, good and bad from our own emotion, facial expressions, etc. We never know exactly what their little minds are thinking. So as her parent, as tired as you must be yourself with all these changes, I would really talk to her and let her sleep with you until she can work through her emtions. I really hope it goes well. You should probably take some time for yourself to unwind. What a strong person you are. And God Bless You and your family. God Bless Your Husband for his heroism. Let us know how it goes!



answers from Norfolk on

Maybe she is upset because her dad is out to sea? My son who was 6 the last time my dh went out to sea would come sleep with me when dh would go out to sea. Just recently, recently meaning a couple of weeks ago my dh had a mid watch and my son who just turned 9 wanted to sleep with me. I told him no but he hasn't asked to sleep with me in quite a long time. I think it has something to do with dh not being there. Plus the adjustment of a new house, a new person in the house. And when my mother in law visits she spoils the kids endlessly. Anyway a lot of adjustment for a young girl. She probably feels secure and stable sleeping with someone whether it be you or her siblings or her grandmother.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches