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Night Terrors: Coping with Fear During Bedtime

What Are You Afraid Of?

We are all familiar with nighttime fears. Sometimes it feels like, even as rational adults, that something is going to come out of that closet. We like to believe that we grow out of the fears that paralyze us as kids, but the reality is that sometimes what we watch, read, or stress about can creep into our dreams or keep us wide awake deep into the night. Something as simple as a change of scenery or spending a night alone can make our anxiety levels rise. It is, however, a different experience when your children are kept awake by fear.

Bedtime Struggles

For the last several nights, Ava and Alexis have been scared to sleep in their new room. Of course, they are in the same room they have always been in but, after the room makeover, they haven’t seemed to settle. I don’t think the new decor is a problem. However, the new bed situation may be the source of our issues. Have you ever woken up in a hotel or new house completely disoriented or scared? I think the new position and type of bed is causing that kind of discombobulation for the twins.

When 10:30 hit the other night and the girls were super upset, we found Alexis climbing up to sleep with Ava. We don’t have an issue with this as long as they are sleeping, but it made us realize that the girls just don’t like to sleep alone right now. I kind of get why. These girls have literally never slept a night apart from each other. It makes sense that when things are new and uncomfortable, that they seek each other’s company to calm themselves down.

Where Do We Go From Here?

I don’t know what exactly is scaring them because they both insist that this is just an adjustment period that they have to go through. But we, somehow, have to make it comfortable for them to sleep in their room without fear. If you have seen the video that we did to cover this, then you know that the girls ended up escaping their room and sleeping on the floor of Jersey’s nursery. As cute as it was the Little Buddies were together, we still want the girls to feel comfortable and safe in their own space.

We don’t have an answer for this yet, and we are still working with the girls every night in hopes that we can find the key to fix this. I know when stress is keeping me awake, I often turn on Hoarders on Philo. I can even watch on my phone so I’m not bothering Justin while he’s asleep. But that won’t help the girls. So, we want to hear from you about what your kids are afraid of at night and what coping mechanisms you use to get them to sleep.

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  • Meik
    July 14, 2020

    Ok well they are twins and very close with each other. When they wake up during the night it’s a sense of knowing they are next to eachother. Even when laying down to go to bed. With the bunk beds it’s like two different rooms because one is higher than the other. I think it’s a comfort within themselves. To make them comfortable try to find away to keep them closer while they feel separated. Old ways walkie talkies lol or a way they can reassure that they are still together.

  • Benedicta
    July 14, 2020

    I’m not a mother yet but I think Justin or even U can read the story till they both fall asleep… and even sing along if necessary…I know it’s kinda difficult because u guys may be exhausted but just try and see how it goes… maybe for some time they might get over it😊

  • Bessie Hatdy
    July 15, 2020

    I just love the family

  • Tonnie Bettis
    July 16, 2020

    I think it’s the bunk beds. I am sure they love them as far as playing on them, but their other beds were more open, lower to the floor and closer to each other’s, which was more geared to sleeping. It’s just my opinion, maybe, they were more comfortable in the other beds. It’s going to take some adjustment with the new bed.

  • Dee Huff
    July 17, 2020

    The most sacred job of parents is to be sure their children are safe and happy. I am now a grandmother of a teenager and a preteen. Looking back through years of parenting I’ve found that I fretted too much over my kids. No one wants discomfort in the home, but we must love and trust our kids enough not to worry so much. Your girls said they are going through an adjustment. Why not accept that ? They actually belong to God. He cares for them. We are only custodians.

  • Chantal
    July 20, 2020

    I’m an identical twin. As young children and babies, my Mom said our beds had to be positioned so we could see each other or we would just cry. Around age 8-9, we got bunk beds and adjusted well. Maybe yours weren’t quite ready but they will adjust. I honestly think it’s a separation anxiety thing. I was completely devastated when I was in a different class than my sister and when only one of us was invited to sleep at a friend’s house. We were 14 when we got our own rooms and my sister said I had to have the room beside hers. My sister also took it very hard when I moved away to university. Being a close set of twins is and endless journey of learning to live appart as individuals. I recall even discussing death at 6yrs old and deciding which was allowed to die first because one of us could handle the loss better.

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