8 Answers

By naughty things I mean pouring laundry powder in dryer, getting cake mix out of the cupboard and pouring it everywhere through the house, playing with food, stealing my phone from right next to me while sleeping, many more. (This said child is 5). Do you have ideas on how to stop a child from doing naughty things in middle of the night?

Posted by keeleynme, 15th December 2014

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  • Does your boy only show these behaviours at night ? How much sleep is he overall getting ?
    Sounds like negative attention-seeking behaviour to me.
    * I would make sure he gets plenty of positive attention
    * Make sure to praise all positive behaviours and choices
    * Actions have consequences; make sure to follow up with natural and logical consequences, but I would suggest without anger and without further punishment. The cake mix goes over the floor ? lets tidy it up together. He steals you phone or destroys an item ? Let’s return the item he takes and make up for what he destroys.
    * I would set some clear house rules together
    * And start a reward chart, whereby positive behaviours (like staying in bed all night) are reinforced and he can earn privileges and rewards
    * You could consider the doctor to rule out any underlying diagnosis

  • We resorted to bolts on doors (eg the laundry door, bathroom door) to keep our son out. We put a combination lock on the pantry. Basically, we worked to reduce his access to the things he was using to make a mess, while we worked with him to change his behaviour.

  • Prevention is the key… Lock doors to rooms you don’t want him in (laundry)… lock pantry, fridge & freezer, put your phone up while sleeping..

    My son did heaps of these things, however he has an intellectual disability.

  • Hi – sounds like you’ve got your hands full! My two girls are sort of similar, in that they both look like they’re awake at night, and they get up and do odd things. Just as VALP, they’re actually not awake (although they seem to be!). I think it’s worthwhile taking VALP’s advice and getting some help. Also, for your child’s safety, I’d consider putting a child proof gate across their door so they can’t get out at night. Good luck!

  • I’d be putting locks on every door. Apart from a safety issue the mess must be driving you insane? Good luck my 2 yo is hyper too

  • If the toilet isn’t off the laundry maybe you could shut the door at night and put an hook and eyelet at the top ot lock it at night if you can reach it when you need to. If your child gets up to go to the toilet at night you can’t put a safety gate in his doorway. Not only that heshe could walk into it and hurt him/herself, Those with bars across the bottom can be quite dangerous. If you don’t lift your feet up high enough you can have a nasty fall …and it hurts!!! Friends of mine overcame that by giving their youngster a drink of milk and a couple of “healthy type” biscuits – no more raiding the cupboards for food. Check if there is food or crumbs under the child’s pillow, under or behind the bed or bins that shouldn’t be there. Your child may be sleep walking. I know a girl who used to drag her mattress off her bed out on to their front verandah and sleep in hot weather before the air conditioning was around, Being on a farm they relied on generators for power. When she went to the capital city to go to Uni it was a big problem as she would get up in the middle of the night and go for a walk. She shared a house with some friends on a fairly busy road. More than once one of them would hear the door (which was always locked at night) bang and rush out to rescue her. I don’t know how old she was when she eventually stopped doing it. Now about 40 odd years later she sleeps so heavily that she wakes up with bad headaches in the morning. Her husband now wakes her up during the night if he wakes up at all and the headaches occur a lot less often now. If your child is sleepwalking it could be dangerous and end up with injuries……or sadly it could be a behavioural problem. I wonder if the teacher has been having any problems with the child at school. Is there any bullying at all? It may be a cry for help/attention with an issue of some type. Is there another child that have resulted in jealousy, or something upsetting happened before this all started? Have been able to determine whether the child is aware that he/she is doing this?
    Would the child confide in somebody else about anything that is causing issues? I know a child who will talk to Grandma about things but not the parents.

  • Very busy child, id start firstly by ensuring you use safety devices on cupboards and id make sure they cant get into dangerous chemicals such as laundry detergent. As for getting up during the night id just insure they get exhausted during the day :) if that fails as a final resolution maybe try a baby gate on his door for abit.

  • My goodness, you do have a busy person at night! Is your child actually awake? There may be a chance your child is sleepwalking, which looks like awake behaviour, eyes are open and conversations can be had, but some children are completely asleep when these strange behaviours occur. Does your child remember any of it? I think you should take your child to your GP and explain your problem. Don’t exhaust yourself trying to overcome this. Your GP will help you identify if this is a behaviour problem or a medical issue that needs attention. Good luck, take care of yourself too.

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