Most of you know Dr. Kay for her parenting advice. Let’s be honest, she’s pretty good. So we have decided that we’re going to start using this blog to share some of this amazing advice.
Today’s tips all surround what to do if your child is having trouble sleeping through the night. The question came originally from a mother whose 7 year old was having trouble sleeping weeks after seeing a scary movie. Definitely frustrating and tiring for his busy parents.
Here are a couple of the things Dr. Kay recommended. Honestly, they will work for many different situations so take note!
- emphasize what to do, rather than what to think
- Emphasize the behavioral goal, rather than the unwanted behavior. For example, “Nighttime is for sleeping, and you can sleep through the night…get up in the morning when the alarm rings.”
- Keep your tone very matter-of-fact. Do not threaten consequences or punishment! Emphasis is on mastering the goal.
- The parent with the stronger conviction, the one who will not waver, is the better choice for redirecting Josh back to bed.
- There is no need for any emotion or drama, such as anger, scolding or pleading. Keep your tone neutral and definitive. Repeat yourself and stay clear, as if you are directing a plane to its landing.
If you are interested in reading more of the tips she gave these parents, read the full column here: Good Night, All Night