We are in nap time hell — The Bump
Babies: 6 - 9 Months

We are in nap time hell

LO just will not take a nap in her crib.  I am sometimes lucky for her to take 20 minute nap in the swing but that is rare too.  I don't understand where she gets all her energy and why she won't nap.  She has no problem going to bed so I don't get why nap time is hell.  I was thinking about getting the No Cry Nap Solution book, but I really don't want to spend money on something I'll never finish.  It has been like this from day one and my mother, who is her daycare, is getting to the point that if we don't get the nap situation fixed, she can't watch her anymore.  HELP!
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Re: We are in nap time hell

  • I sympathize!  My 8.5 month old has never, ever been a good napper (or a good night time sleeper, for that matter).  I read all kinds of books, and even consulted a baby sleep expert, looking for ways to get decent, consistent naps.  Like your LO, mine was short-napping most of the time, with the occasional 1 hour nap.  I couldn't understand why - I was doing everything the sleep experts said!  I kept her up for only 1 - 1.5 hours first thing in the morning, then no more than 2 hours thereafter, and she had an early bedtime, so she wouldn't get "overtired".  But I felt like all I did was try to get her to sleep - all day, every day - with very little success.

    I was about to give up and accept that maybe I just had a "snapper" on my hands (a short napper), when someone asked me the most obvious question "Maybe she isn't tired?"  Yet again, I found myself saying "No!  The sleep expert said....."  But I finally started to wonder if maybe the sleep expert was wrong about my baby *gasp*.  So one day, I decided to try keeping her up for 3 hours instead of 2.  She took a wonderful, blissful, 1.5 hour nap that morning.  After 3 more hours, I put her down again, for another 1.5 hours.  I literally danced around my kitchen, I was so happy.

    We have been enjoying this much more realistic schedule now for the past 3 weeks and we are both so much happier!  So is it possible that maybe your DD is not quite tired enough when you put her down?  It might be worth an experiment one day to keep her up a half hour or so longer than normal, and see if that works?  I will keep my fingers crossed for you that she sorts the naps out soon.  Good luck!! 

  • I found No Cry Nap Solution was worth it. My LO wouldn't nap anywhere except my arms and I followed the suggestions and transitioned to swing and then crib. There is a general chapter on sleep and then newborns, then the rest is divided by problem. So you can just read the first bit and then skip to what you need.

    For me the big difference was finding the perfect timing for a nap and adding in white noise and a blanket as associations. They stayed constant when she was put down. I still hold her to sleep, but she can nap in her crib up to 2h, putting herself back to sleep as needed. All babies are different, and I like that this book gives loads of ideas to tailor a solution based on the child's behaviours and temperament.

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  • image WesternGirl2:

    I sympathize!  My 8.5 month old has never, ever been a good napper (or a good night time sleeper, for that matter).  I read all kinds of books, and even consulted a baby sleep expert, looking for ways to get decent, consistent naps.  Like your LO, mine was short-napping most of the time, with the occasional 1 hour nap.  I couldn't understand why - I was doing everything the sleep experts said!  I kept her up for only 1 - 1.5 hours first thing in the morning, then no more than 2 hours thereafter, and she had an early bedtime, so she wouldn't get "overtired".  But I felt like all I did was try to get her to sleep - all day, every day - with very little success.

    I was about to give up and accept that maybe I just had a "snapper" on my hands (a short napper), when someone asked me the most obvious question "Maybe she isn't tired?"  Yet again, I found myself saying "No!  The sleep expert said....."  But I finally started to wonder if maybe the sleep expert was wrong about my baby *gasp*.  So one day, I decided to try keeping her up for 3 hours instead of 2.  She took a wonderful, blissful, 1.5 hour nap that morning.  After 3 more hours, I put her down again, for another 1.5 hours.  I literally danced around my kitchen, I was so happy.

    We have been enjoying this much more realistic schedule now for the past 3 weeks and we are both so much happier!  So is it possible that maybe your DD is not quite tired enough when you put her down?  It might be worth an experiment one day to keep her up a half hour or so longer than normal, and see if that works?  I will keep my fingers crossed for you that she sorts the naps out soon.  Good luck!! 

    this! My LO just turned 7 months and though he had been napping every 2.5 hours then he just started fighting naps! Now he is back to 1.5 hour naps after 3 hours like pp said 

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  • I'm a lurker but thought I'd throw our experience in.  I know you mentioned the No cry nap solution book so please don't get offended when I mention Ferber but it seriously was the best decision we have ever done.  All the horror stories you here were not the case for us.  I truly think it would have been 100% tougher if we had done any other method like pick up/put down bc I think it just would have escalated our LO.  I do want to add though that our Lo is much younger so I think she adapted to Ferber quite well.  I think when they are older it's tougher.  Also, I'm not sure if your LO currently goes to sleep on their own or not, if they do go to sleep on their own than this obviously wouldn't work for you.  

     However, with that said, we started Ferber sleep training last Saturday and it has worked wonders.  My LO always slept from 7-6 with one wake up so that wasn't the issue, it was the constant rocking her to sleep for night and all of her naps.  The naps were becoming exhausting considering I'd rock her longer than she actually slept.  She only cried the first night, hasn't since, and her naps have improved drastically.  She still fusses and sometimes cries for naps, never more than 5-10 mins. and Ferber states naps are much harder to train for.  But the length has increased significantly.  I will usually get at least 1 1.5 hour nap and her others are at least 45 mins.  I also let her fuss/cry if the nap has been less than 40 mins and she will usually go back to sleep.  I don't know if your interested in sleep training but it has helped us so much. 

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