Thursday, February 24, 2011

Advice Wanted- Ike at Night and Sleep Deprivation

As you all know, my days are rather busy. Today, for example, I took my kids to a friends house and we made homemade pasta and hung out for a few hours, then came home and took my sons and their friend on a foraging walk, then made supper (nettle chicken balls, tomato sauce, and the pasta from earlier), ran an errand without the kids, and came home. I don't have much free time during the day to do my writing.
I write at night. Night is the time where the kids are (supposed to be) asleep, it's quiet, and I have few distractions keeping me from writing what I need to write.

Ok, one huge distraction.
The little tyke, Ike.

I'm a co-sleeper, (semi) extended nurser, and cloth diaperer. Those factors combine to leave me in a situation where I can sometimes (ok, nearly every night and many times a night at that) wring my neck in frustration at Ike.
What happens is this.
Ike nurses to sleep.
He wakes up because he needs to pee.
He's wearing a diaper. But no, he won't pee in the diaper. Oh, did I mention that he is NOT potty trained, but only occasionally will pee or poop on the toilet? But definitely not consistently.
So, because he needs to pee but won't pee in the diaper, one of two things happen.
Either I hold him and nurse him for half an hour or longer, until he finally can't hold it in anymore and pees in his diaper, and then he settles and goes back to sleep...
I take him to the toilet, which he has no issue using during the day, and in fact, loves it- and he has a freak out attack, crying in his half-awake-half-asleep state because he doesn't want to pee on the toilet, but after a few minutes he'll pee, and then he's able to go back to sleep. But because he's soooo hyped up from his freaking out, it takes him some time for him to get comforted enough and fall back asleep, so he usually nurses back to sleep.
And the cycle repeats itself.
Because the more he nurses, the more he has to pee. The more times he pees, the more he nurses, the more he has to pee.
Oh, and did I mention that this is usually happening a few times between the hours of 10 pm and 2 am, my quiet writing time? And that when I'm nursing him back to sleep, he's constantly on the move and is really distracting and I can't concentrate enough to write during that time?
I've had plans for a few nice posts already for a few days, but my son is making it really hard to write. I can only write in the half hour or so between times that he's awake... By the time I finish writing, most days its nearly 2 am or even later. My kids wake me up between 6 and 8, depending on the day, so I'm running on 4 to 6 hours of sleep, and my days are really filled with activities that require energy, both mental and physical.

I need help, suggestions, anything.
Yesterday my son had a temper tantrum for 45 minutes after 1 am because I didn't want to nurse him back to sleep. He's a stubborn little one.
He's 17 months.
Please, any ideas you might have to deal with this night issue? Because I've had it up to here right now and am not functioning at optimal levels!

Have you ever heard of a non potty trained kid who wakes up because he has to pee, refuses to pee in the diaper, and has a freakout if you take him to the toilet??


  1. No suggestions, sorry. But I have kind of the same issue, my 16 month old still nurses to sleep and co sleeps as well. But lately she has been waking up in the middle of the night 2-4 am and after a few min of playing she has to poop. I have no idea how to make her hold it until normal waking hours. Just know your not alone

  2. I wouldn't consider myself frugal as such but I hate waste and I am a bit of an eco warrier so believe me it does pain me to say this. Deep breath - try him in a disposable! He hate weeing in the cloth nappy because he doesn't like feeling wet. If you're only using one or two during the night it's not so bad. You need to take care of yourself and sleep deprivation is awful. Frugal becomes foolish if you allow it to compromise your health.
    Good luck


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