Kids are waking each other up

I have a small 2 bedroom apartment. My daughter has one room and my boys have the other. Well, my problem is my 5 year old wakes up my 3 year old EVERY day and this mama is exhausted!! I work night shift and get home around 2am and up between 4 and 5am. My 5 yo NEVER sleeps in and has been waking up at the latest 6am and will not quit waking up his little brother. Today I tried to squeeze in a nap and he woke up his little brother after 20 minutes of me going to sleep. I have tried to give him melatonin and it he will go to sleep but still wakes up early. I have tried letting him stay up and still wakes up early. I feel at a loss of what to do and I dont know what sleep is anymore please help an exhausted mama out
93 Likes

Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. https://answers.mamasuncut.com/t/kids-are-waking-each-other-up/15873

Teach him it’s a game to see how long he can be quiet and let baby brother sleep. Let him have some snacks and watch a show while laying next to you so you can rest but he is contained.

15 Likes

My last two babies were 13 months apart. They never napped at the same time. One would raise heck until they woke the other up and then crash out. So it was rough. Nothing helped with those two, they just grew out of it. But my first kid always woke up super early, so I kept crayons and coloring books next to my bed. She slept with me. So she would get her crayons and coloring book in the morings and lay there quietly coloring. Maybe something along those lines would help you in the mornings too. Just have something right there for them to quietly occupy themselves with when they wake up. Maybe even some snacks.

2 Likes

I feel for you. I have 1 that has ADHD. She wakes up everybody throughout the night. The other wakes up at 6am. When he’s awake everyone has to be awake. If he doesn’t get enough sleep everyone pays all day. I’m sure some will critise me but my solution is the tablet. If they wake up without disturbing others they can go on their tablets until others are awake. They have to use headphones & there’s parental controls to monitor use. It has helped a lot.

13 Likes

My kids are 3,5 & 7. We had to separate the 3 & 5 yrs old for the same reason. The 3 yr old now sleeps in the room w the 7 yr old. We have another BDR but my oldest actually likes (currently) to have her sister in her room (been over a year).

1 Like

I get it momma i have three 11 months apart teach them how to use Netflix if you have it or set your phone on the screen of appropriate youtube channels before you go to bed so they can pick it up and swipe to watch videos if they wake up before you.it might be deemed lazy but honestly who cares if it works and your well rested and present and not irritable do what works for you and your babies

10 Likes

Phone and tablet and headphones or anything. I will literally pile the blankets and pillows on the living room floor set the lab top up and get him snacks and a sippy and he’ll watch Netflix while I nap on the floor. I don’t even care. My 3 year old wakes up my 1 year old CONSTANTLY. I usually can squeeze in solid 3 hour naps. I also put him into pre school 3 days a week because I was so exhausted. At 5 doesn’t he have school or anything kindergarten ?

Get some toys and coloring book and tell him to lay in bed with you

Mine are 4,1.5 & 7m. My oldest & middle share a room & the baby is in with me. When my oldest gets up before his sisters he knows not to wake them up but it’s usually them waking up before him. When my boy was 2 after his 1st sister was born I would give him the tablet & a sippy cup to watch in bed beside me while I slept for another hr with my door locked :sweat_smile::sweat_smile: now I just get up & lay on yhe couch while they all play until I get enough energy lol

Can you give him something he can do quietly when he wakes up? I agree with those who have said this would be an appropriate use of content restricted screen time. Maybe have his own cheap tablet and headphones he can come out into the living room (which is where I’m assuming you sleep) and watch videos for a few hours allowing you and his siblings to rest. Night shift stinks. Night shift while parenting without apparent help? Good luck!

2 Likes

My 7 and almost 5 Year old are both in school luckily. Before they were, I was super tired. And now, with it Christmas break and such, I’m so tired it’s not funny cause I have an almost 8week old son and yea, I’m waking up at night for feedings. My hubby works during the day. I’ll be happy when my girls go back to school so this momma can sleep without worrying about my girls getting into things that aren’t theirs. Good luck and hang in there

Can you teach him to play by himself somewhere quietly until everyone else wakes up?
Or maybe a tablet with earphones until everyone else wakes up?

Put the three year old in with the oldest for a while and you sleep in with 5 year old and tell him he is not to go into their room at all. And not to wake you up. He is to wait until you wake up yourself. Set some consequences for him if he wakes anyone up.

5 Likes

Ugh story of my life! I work 2am-10am. My kiddos are now 9&8 and just within the last year finally my youngest finally gets his tablet and will go sit in the living room or quietly in his bed with it. Can the 3yo go into the girls room until he’s a bit older?

Probably not great advice but to keep my 3 year old quite in the morning he has his tablet and that can keep him quite for a few hours.

4 Likes

Amazon fire tablet with YouTube kids.
I’ve got a 2 and a 4 year old. I was that “my kids will never use electronics!” Mom.
Yeahhh if they get up before 7, they get those tablets so fast lol. Momma needs sleep to be a good mama.

5 Likes

seems like I’m the only one suggesting this and it may seem mean but … he is old enough that when you tell him to stop waking his sibling up , he should be listening or getting consequences … take away his fav tv show each time he wakes his sibling up or his favorite toy

17 Likes

My girls are 16 months apart. I was working a full time job and a part time job. They are now 7 & 8. But what I did was make a bin, from like the dollar tree, and fill it with stuff that my kids could do by themselves. Coloring books, barbies, puzzles, Amazon tablet that was charged. And the bottom drawer of the fridge with snacks they were aloud to have, oranges, cheese, gram crackers, boiled eggs ect. They were taught they were only allowed these things until I got up. I set an alarm for a certain time and they were to let me sleep and there sister sleep until that alarm went off. I spent almost every night in the living so I could hear if anything was going wrong. It was ROUGH but we all made it thru and now my girls are really independent and sleep until 7 am or later. You got this momma. Take a deep breath.

2 Likes

Can whoever is watching them at night stay a little longer in the morning and keep your 5 year old from waking up your 3 year old? Maybe like once a week to play catch up on some sleep? Or do they leave right when you get home and therefore are unable to do so? Hang in there mama!

Put them in day care for a half day so you can get some rest!

3 Likes

Get a baby sitter even for a day or get them in daycare, you need sleep!!! My kids were both like this and sometimes still are and they are 4 & 6. I know the feeling, even if you have to plant them in front of a tv or tablet so you can get some rest, do it. You need to be able to function too.

He probably needs more stimulation during the day. If my son plays hard he knock out but honestly he’s still up by 6-7am every day

1 Like

How are you napping when your 5 year old is awake unsupervised?

10 Likes

I turn TV on put toy story for my 2 year old and my 9 month old I baby proof where he plays and no small toys after I feed them and I take a nap and I make sure they have clean diapers

2 Likes

Look into some 3 yo programs the area I live in they have head start and also 3 yo programs as far as I know they only go half day but hey that’s about 3 or 4 hrs peace and quiet and sleep

Daycare a lot for sleep time if you work second or third shift

1 Like

Why is the 5 yr old not enrolled in school? And 5 is old enough to understand the rules, you just have to enforce them.

Look gor a Headstart program, sounds like they need more activities activities.

Get baby gates and shut doors.

1 Like

Nothing wrong with kids sharing a room put the oldest and youngest together so he isnt waking the other one up.

Not sure jf ur kids into movies yet but putting on.something a.movie they like or show and have them both next to you so in case they move or anything you will wakw up or they can wake you up. Or the person who puts ur children to bed at night have them keep 5 yr old up an extra one later might help good luck I know the feeling working nights with little ones it is overly exhausting.

As a last resort give him an iPad or put YouTube on…:woman_shrugging:

3 Likes

Take him to the park or somewhere he can run around let him run that energy off then your see he pass out

My son knows how to turn on the TV. Some times I even leave the TV on a kids show so all he has to do is just press the play button. I also allow morning snacks. Just cut up fruit and cheese so he can help him self till I get up at 6Am.

Put your 5yr old in the room by himself & let your daughter share with your 3yr old. Set his bedtime a bit later than normal. Get a white noise machine for his room & darkening curtains. U live in an apartment. Maybe neighbors (on the other side of his shared wall) are waking him up while they are getting ready for work.

5 Likes

I’d give your five year old some serious consequences ; 5 is old enough to understand and obey some rules; you just need to enforce them. Just be like " if you wake your brother up again then I’m/ youre gunna " and either take something away or make him write his name…something …

11 Likes

How much melatonin are you giving if you don’t mind me asking? My 7 year old boy has never been a good sleeper but my 4 year old girl is the complete opposite. His doctor said we weren’t giving him enough when I told her what he was taking and that he would still wake up at like 3:30am and not go back to sleep and he has to get up at 5:30 to get ready for school. She said for his age and weight he could be taking 5mg nightly and we were giving 1mg, maybe 1 and a 1/2. Now that we at least give 4mg, it really works for him. He is more rested, and not drowsy!

1 Like

Tell him to knock it off or you’ll have no choice to punish him. That’s not nice, that’s not cool, your the mom, take control of your household!

5 Likes

Some children are just early risers. The latest my 6 year old sleeps in is 6:30am and that doesn’t change whether she goes to bed at 8:30 or midnight. She has quiet games and snacks in her room and she knows how to occupy herself until her alarm goes off. It isn’t a perfect system but it does help.

4 Likes

I had that same issue when my boys shared a room. If moving to a bigger place isn’t possible, then could the three year old sleep in his sisters room? If that’s possible, put a bunch of safe toys in the five year olds room so he doesn’t want to wake his brother up

1 Like

My daughter was waking up very early for a while regardless of when she was going to bed. I took her to the pediatrician for recommendations and to see if anything might be going on that I’m missing. He noticed that she had a lot of inflammation in her sinuses. He said sometimes little kids will have a hard time sleeping due to allergies that we may not realize. He recommended Flonase, benadryl, and melatonin. After 2 weeks, we stopped the benadryl and melatonin, but continue the flonase daily. Worked like a charm :raised_hands:t4: I’d say make an appointment with the pediatrician to see if anything is going on. Also, try putting the 5 year old in their own room. They could be waking up and seeing their sibling, so instead of going back to sleep, they want to play.

Been there, put older child in charge. Maybe get him something quite that he can only do when baby bother is a sleep. Let him fix a snack for himself and brother.

Some kids just wake up early, no matter what you do. I’ve always been an early riser, so I feel him.

Amazon has a alarm clock that that color change’s. You can set the times to so when it’s red he has to stay in bed or be quiet and when it’s green he can get up and make noise. Also like everyone else said you could try setting him up a tablet or tv channel so if he wakes up he can go do that and leave everyone else alone otherwise you can have consequences like taking away a toy or something he likes. If all else fails maybe daycare or an extra sitter so you can sleep. Unfortunately you might even have to change the times you work if possible. It’s rough I wish you the best of luck .

9 Likes

You probably need to try a later bedtime but over a longer period. I ended up with a child who woke up between 7-8am when everyone was being woken at six. Melatonin won’t work unless there’s an actual melatonin sleep issue so please don’t give it like sweets as it can cause sleep issues otherwise. If he’s five, he won’t need as much sleep as his younger brother and possibly as little as eight hours some nights. If you aim for ten hours and want him up at seven then he actually doesn’t need to go to bed before nine or ten pm! (Sounds shocking I know!)

Send him out to where you sleep and go in the bedroom with the little one and go back to sleep. Turn the TV on and tell him to sit there and watch it and be quiet

2 Likes

Welcome to having kids! Especially two young boys sharing a room. Time to upgrade to a bigger place and split the boys up.

5 Likes

I wake up with 1st light. I wish I didn’t but no matter what I do. Room darkening curtains help. Use a clothes pen to make sure the littlest light doesn’t come through. His body clock might take a few days to change

I’d let him get up early just make sure he knows he can play quietly until everyone else is awake, idk how responsible of a kid he is but there may be more rules that go with that

2 Likes

Maybe turn one room into a sleeping room and one into a play/movie room. They can all sleep in the same room and when the 5 year old wakes up they can have breakfast and play or a movie in the other room and not disturb the other children. We live in a two bedroom and our dining room is our 2 year olds play area, sometimes you just gotta do what you have to in order to make sure y’all are all ok. You need your sleep to function. Is the 5 year old in school? Sounds like they need more stimulation and maybe they are bored the 3 year old can probably qualify for head start as well.

1 Like

I wish I had advice. My daughter has done this since she was 3 & now she’s 7 none of us sleep around here :rofl:

My son has always been a early riser. He used to wake up at 5am on the dot every single day. We got him a alarm clock that turns greens and goes off at 6:45 so he gets super proud of himself if he sleeps till then or even if he just wait in bed until it turns green. Some days if he wakes up before that and doesn’t want to sit and wait which doesn’t happen often I let him come in bed and watch a show until it’s time to get up .

2 Likes

Get a mini trampoline!

1 Like

We go to bed earlier since no matter what my kids wake up before 6am. So I put them to bed by 7pm in order to get sleep. I go to bed early too.

1 Like

Who’s watching them when your at work? Maybe they can stay and extra hr or so you can get some sleep, and keep the other child entertained !?

6 Likes

Get a different job. That’s what I had to do. I worked evenings at one job 5pm to 10pm and overnight at the other 11pm getting home at 8am. My toddler wouldn’t sleep past 9 and my older kids were at school. Was falling asleep driving I was so sleep deprived. You kids body clock isn’t going to change so change your schedule, that’s the only way it will work. Good luck momma hope u get sleep soon.

5 Likes

5yo is old enough to know better.
Get them an “ok to wake clock”.
No on is allowed to get out of bed until the clock says it is wake time.
Works for my son.

3 Likes

Oh that was/is my oldest! Sadly there is not much you can do. I just had to remind him he can’t wake up brother, brother needs more sleep than you do. “OK to wake clock” did not work for him. Keeping him up later. Nor did melatonin (this actually gave him more nightmares) you have to figure out what it work for you guys.

The five year old can go to preschool or kindergarten, and the 3 year old can attend a head start program. Look into day cares and schools. It’s good for them to be up early, so I wouldn’t try putting the kids on your sleep schedule if you work 3rd shift.

6 Likes

Put a little figure out and tell them they’re patrolling at night. Not to get up until the sun is fully out

This is how my daughter is, I’ve worked pretty well with her with rewarding her when she lets me and her sister sleep in a little LOL. I let her go on her tablet, watch tv, and always get her a little snack for the morning when she’s awake for an hour before the rest of us.

2 Likes

My kids are crazy and like to wake up early if they don’t get to bed early. Makes no sense to me but if they go to bed earlier they will sleep in an extra hour. If they go to bed late they will wake up an hour early :woman_facepalming:t3:

1 Like

You either have to change your work hours or get a sitter.

5 Likes

Don’t let him nap during day. He will sleep longer till late morning. Also cut off his sugar intake

1 Like

Put them back to bed and the five year old doesn’t get to play with his favorite toys the day he doesn’t listen. He’ll catch on when he sees there are consequences

1 Like

Can you put the kids beds in one room and then make the other a play room so when he wakes up he can go in there to play?

Put that baby in school, out the house at 8am. I like to tell people school is like my 2nd coparent.:woman_shrugging:t4: They get them M-F 8 hours outta the day. Problem solved.

1 Like

How late do the kids eat? We stop food and drinks by 6/6:30

Id suggest setting up something for him to do!

On weekends, ill set up coloring at the table with a snack, and i put a cup full of water in the fridge.

(I put the same stuff out for my 2 year old.)

My 5 year old will wake up
And get his drink, turn on the TV and color.

Most mornings, the 2 year old will do the same!

2 Likes

Unfortunately the only option I can see is changing your hours at work, or finding work with better hours. My middle child was the exact same, didn’t matter if I put him to bed at 7 pm or 12 am, up at the crack of Dawn, never failed. Now that he’s 16 it’s a little different, but up until a couple years ago, he has had the same sleep pattern, didn’t matter how much I tried to change it.

I’ve been there as a single mom with kids that close in age working night shift and it was hard so I understand. Instead of making it a “negative” thing that he’s up early and ready to go, make it positive. I made it a big deal that my older child was the oldest and how it’s a privilege to get to get up early and spend some me time alone. She was able to get up, pick her favorite show to watch and had an easy accessible breakfast right there. I had a color book and crayons on the night stand for quiet play too. She stopped waking her brother up when she learned it was fun to be able to do those things without little brother wanting to share it all. She loved it! I told her a specific time we can wake him and she was so excited she still got too but did at the time picked every morning. Then they came and got me together for a big breakfast.

8 Likes

What about blackout shades?

Honestly if wake the one up and then put em back to bed when i went. Im mean tho. I dont ALWAYS use this technique but when my kids are causing me problems like this im like wanna see what its like!?! Watch this!? Lol honestly hed like the mommy time.

The 3 year old could be in preschool and the 5yr old kindergarten. You could get the 5yo ready and on the bus when they wake up (or when you wake them), let the 3yo play til preschool time. Or drive both to school and preschool at same time. Then go home and sleep! I could be missing something or skipped over it in the post, but they are both over the age to start these programs. My daughter started K at 4 (a year early) so I know 5 is the usual age. She started preschool not daycare at 3. They sre pr I bably craving some education and socialization/interaction. Either that, or whoever is watching them while you work, does NOT have them on a bedtime routine. And if it was me. I would look into that before anything. Bc you may need a different night time sitter. Find out what’s going on when you aren’t home. (Even hidden nanny cams). Good luck mama!!!

2 Likes

I have been known to put my kids infront of tv and fall asleep as they watch cuddled to me … this is a short term solution and only works if they are able to Watch tv which not all mine were able to at that age… good luck momma

I would try maybe pit little one with you or with his sister… 5 year old sounds like my 2 year old she wake up early every morning and wakes us all up… melatonin probably wares off by then for him I’d just move 2 year old and tell 5 year old to occupy himself in room until ur up

If I am reading this correctly, you are sleeping in the front room (been there!) Can you move your youngest into the room with his sister? How old is she? I know in the state I live, technically if siblings of the opposite gender are sharing a room, they will need their own space when the oldest turns 7. (Which is bogus because sometimes, like in this case, you don’t have a choice in sleeping arrangements). Or could you possibly move the younger boy into the front room with you?

No matter what I tried my kid was an early bird as well he could go to sleep at 12am and wake up at the crack of dawn he’s been that way since he was a baby he is now 6 and is NOW just starting to sleep in until 9 I dread weekends bc he wakes up so early :sob: and I have to try to tell him it’s not time to wake up yet and he’ll lay fine until 7am but that’s as late usually as he can lay down. Maybe trying separating him when he wakes up so he doesn’t wake the little one or bribing him with something. Sorry I couldn’t be more helpful some kids are just naturally early birds no matter what

Try melatonin, wouldn’t recommend everyday usage, but just for those nights they need a full sleep.
Just a suggestion, please do research, before giving your children anything.

Alarm clock that turns green when he can get up. My daughter would get up at all times during the night till I got that thing. She doesn’t get to get up till 730 now and if she wakes her brother up that’s with loud noises/toys then she gets in trouble. It’s quiet time till everyone’s up. My 2 yr old son is a sleeper

2 Likes

For all those saying put him in kindergarten must have not had a child that had a birthday after the cut off date for kindergarten. Try to talk to him about quiet play. Teach him how to be independent without needing to wake up anyone. Maybe set a area up in the living room where he can play and watch morning cartoons on low. Let him get something simple to eat or teach him to use the microwave to heat up breakfast. 2 of my 3 were using the microwave and toaster at 3. People were amazed they could. I just took time to teach them. Included them every time I made anything. They could cook on the stove but not without me standing there for obvious reasons at 5. Teach him to read a digital clock and tell him when the clock says ×:×× time he can wake his brother. You have to make it fun for him alone and give him things he can do his brother can’t or he’s going to want to play with someone. It’s no fun sitting there bored alone.

3 Likes

I’m sorry mama :sob:
I’m on the same boat, my 6 year old wakes up at 6am everyday, wakes his brother up as well. I don’t sleep till 2/3am from working at night. Then they start fighting and come screaming and crying into my room… then with all the chaos they wake up my 9 month old :sob::sob:. I don’t know what sleep is anymore.

If he isn’t old enough for K, maybe check into a local head-start program in your area for kids his age. This would provide you some free time. Most HS programs pick up in a bus at your residence!

My middle son would wake up at 3 or 4am and decide it was time to be up. This didn’t work well once he started school. His doctor now has him on 5mg melatonin and 0.2mg clonidine. It works most of the time. Talk to your doctor.

room darkening shades will help a little…

1 Like

That’s just the way it will be with kids.

1 Like

That’s you best option.!! If money is a problem there are programs in every state to help with cost. For good choices look for BETTER Beginnings . They will help also your local education co/ok can tell you chocies. You need help you can’t be best you when your to tired work or be your best with your kids. I taught preschool for 28 years . We had six of our own. The childer n benefit from good programs.

He’s probably going to get up bc that’s his body’s natural cycle. But why can’t he just play quietly in another room? Like in the lounge room or something?
If you play music quietly in their room it’ll help with shuffling and moving about noises while he gets up and goes to play. If he’s actively waking your 3 year old on purpose though, that’s not acceptable.

2 Likes

I give my kids a sign like a clock and they can not get up until the sign is on the color green. They can read a book or color or whatever it is but they have to stay in their rooms. Unless they have to get up and potty. After that they go back in their room and wait for it to be on green.

2 Likes

Who watches your kids over night while you are at work? Is it possible to get that person to come over during the day and help with the kids while you take a nap before work?

5 Likes

Play the quiet game showing him not to wake his brother. Kids love that.

Dark dark curtains helped my little one. I was also on night shift for awhile and being a single mom there for a bit I used to set my son up in bed with me in the morning. Breakfast and some TV so I could sleep and he could be right next to me if he needed anything. I’m a very very light sleeper so it’s almost like I never actually get to fall all the way asleep it’s ridiculous. I would lay off the melatonin unless it’s recommended by a doctor it can cause night terrors and issues with sleeping in the future. Good luck momma! You got this!!

2 Likes

Maybe if you put the 3yo in the room with your daughter, the 5yo will play in his room for a little bit while you sleep.

6 Likes

Don’t worry momma school will start soon for all your kiddos and you will sleep soon…

Also put your three year old in your bed so when the other one wakes up you can stop him before he makes it to the little one…. Ik not the best idea but that’s what I did with my boys and finally got some sleep

1 Like

Why is he waking him up for? Like is there a specific reason behind it have you talked to him about it at all to figure out why he feels the need to wake him up every morning when he wakes up. I’d have that conversation with him, and then tell him that he has to stop doing that. Try to figure out a fun activity to set up in the morning that he van go straight to instead of waking up his brother. Or how old is your daughter? Maybe you could try having your 3 year old sleep in your daughter’s room for awhile.

3 Likes

Room darkening shades and a “morning box” for everyone. I suggest 2 with separate things in them and hide one so you can switch them out when they get to boring. Its just a special box with special toys that they only get in the morning. They wake up and can play by themselves or with siblings AFTER they wake up on their own until a certain time. Then they get put up and can’t be played with until morning. So its exciting that they get their special toys in the morning to play with until 8 or 9 or whenever in their room. Then you get your sleep. When it stops working as well you switch the morning box with different toys so its exciting again. For example, my daughter had a coloring book and markers, small animal figurines, a figet spinner, and bubbles. Then it would be switched out with a different coloring book with colored pencils, little dolls, and a rubix cube. Im sure there was more but its been awhile and I can’t remember all of them since I have 3 kids :rofl: Obviously each box has to be toys that the younger kids wouldn’t need 100% supervision with since you will be sleeping or at least resting. Eventually they just learn to get up and play with any of their toys on their own till a certain time. You can also set an alarm of when the toys go away after they get the hang of it so when the alarm goes off they’ll either wake you up or put their stuff away and wake you up. Hope that helps

7 Likes

My children are the same. They need more stimulation during the day in order to fall asleep well at night. My 6 year old only sleeps through the night when we have alot of activities throughout the day. By night time he is exhausted and needs to recharge

1 Like

I darkened my littles room and cover windows at night in the living room so the sun don’t shine in early in mornings. My little used to wake up really early now unless she has school she will sleep til 10-1030. Melatonin don’t woke for her, she will sleep a few hours then be wide awake.

1 Like

Welcome to parenting hood… you’ll have no rest until their in school…

1 Like