My Baby Will Not Nap for Anyone But Grandma!

Last updated on July 22nd, 2024

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Kim West, MSW, Mom of 2, creator of The Sleep Lady Shuffle

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Hi, I’m Kim West, the Sleep Lady. In today’s video blog, I am going to answer Nicholas’s question

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Hi, I’m Kim West, the Sleep Lady. In today’s video blog, I am going to answer Nicholas’s question:

“We have a 9 1/2 month old who was a sleep champion when we sleep trained him around 7-months old until he got an ear infection and began teething again. The only way for us to get him to sleep was to hold him all night. My wife and I were taking shifts. Now, he’s over the ear infection and his teething doesn’t seem to be too bad. We’ve moved to a new house as well. He’s doing okay at night, goes to bed around 8:30, almost no fussing and no crying. Sleeps until about 12:30 or 1:00 a.m., wakes up hungry, has some formula then goes right back to sleep no problem.

“His grandma watches him during the weekdays and he seems to nap pretty well for her averaging around 2, 1 1/2 to 2-hour naps a day, which is great but when the weekend comes and it’s time for him to take naps at home, he fights it. This last weekend he cried for 2 hours until we finally give in and decided “no more crying it out”. We need help restoring him back to sleeping solidly through the night and being able to fall asleep on his own almost anywhere for naps. -Nicholas.”

It’s little bit hard to promise that he’ll be able to fall asleep anywhere because some kids are a little more particular and they like their environment that they go to sleep in to be consistent. However, there are quite a few things that I think would help, especially since right now your baby will not nap for anyone but grandma:

What is the recommended bedtime for a 9 1/2 month old?

8:30 p.m. is on the late end for a 9 1/2 month old to go to bed. I want to make sure that he’s not overtired and getting into the crib too drowsy at bedtime. 7:00 or 7:30 p.m. is the common bedtime for his age.

Is your baby awake enough when he’s going to bed?

baby will not napI don’t know what’s going on with his naps with grandma. Even though it sounds great, I’m unsure about the timing? I want to know what time is he napping, and are his naps pretty consistent? Most of all, how is she getting him to sleep?

Lots of times, grandmas (and sometimes nannies, too), don’t want to hear the baby that they’re taking care of cry, and you can’t blame them. It’s not very fun for any of us. If this is the case, they tend to do more and hold more, so when you have him on a weekend and he won’t know how to go to sleep because you’re putting him down more awake than he is used to.

What this means is that you’ll have to talk to grandma and see if she’s willing to change how she handles naps. Perhaps a more consistent nap routine that mirrors bedtime, putting him down more wakeful and The Shuffle or timed checks.

If you talk to her and she’s not willing to do anything, then at least if you have consistent times, then it just means that you would have to do sleep coaching on the weekends for naps. Does it take longer doing it this way? Yes, it does but it’s not impossible and absolutely can work.

In terms of the feeding during the night, please check with your pediatrician because he may really need to receive calories during the night given his age, weight, and health. If your pediatrician decides that he really doesn’t, then you can (over the course have three to five days) slowly reduce the amount of formula in his bottle until finally he’s down to maybe 2 or 3 ounces and then stop it completely. Be sure to treat all night awakenings the same with either The Shuffle or timed checks. I promise you that in a couple of weeks, you should be back to your great sleep champion.

Video filmed by In Focus Studios

If you have experienced a baby who is too drowsy, please share your experience below. Please click the “reply” link under this article and leave this mom a comment. Supporting each other makes parenting so much easier!

FAQs: Can You Sleep Train for Naps?

How do you nap train?

Some children are too alert when a parent or caregiver is in the room with them. If you feel that your presence is causing him to become agitated or overstimulated consider leaving the room.

Where is the best place for naps?

Your baby needs a consistent routine, and napping in her bed at home is the best way to help reinforce your nap training efforts.

What are disaster naps?

A disaster nap is a nap that is less than 45 minutes in length. These shortened naps are “disaster naps” because they are not a full sleep cycle. If you find that your baby is waking after only 20 or 30 minutes, you may be able to gently encourage her to go back to sleep.

Author: Kim West, MSW, Mom of 2, creator of The Sleep Lady Shuffle

My name is Kim West, and I’m the mother of two beautiful girls, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has been a practicing child and family therapist for more than 21 years, and the creator of the original gentle, proven method to get a good night’s sleep for you and your child. My sleep journey began when I started experimenting with gently shaping my daughter’s sleep by not following the conventional wisdom at the time. After having success (and then more success with my second daughter!), I began helping family and friends and my step-by-step method spread like wildfire, exactly like an excellent night of sleep for a tired parent should!