My first message about my child’s sleep anxiety didn’t get any replies but I thought I’d try again.
I’m so happy to report that our plan to remove the accommodation of me laying down in their bed has worked. They weren’t happy about it to say the least but it worked!
Now our next accommodation to tackle is tricky because it is not my spouse or myself giving it but an older sibling. This sibling shares a room with our anxious child and has been sleeping in bed with them at the anxious child’s insistence. I wish we had understood what a bad idea this was when it began, but sadly we had no clue.
Now our older child is fed up with all of this. I told them that they absolutely didn’t need to accommodate their sibling any longer. But I feel like having a plan would be helpful. The fact that they share a room (out of necessity due to our household make up) makes it all the more tricky to handle. I’m afraid that the anxious sibling will keep the older sibling awake all night as punishment for not bedsharing. I’d love any advice you all have to offer as I feel like we’ve hit a dead end. Thank you so much!
Thank you so much! I truly appreciate the response and the excellent advice. My children are due to start school in less than a week. I told the accommodating child that maybe we would have a great chance of success waiting until the stress of the first weeks of school has passed. But also that I support them either way and it’s their choice when to end the accommodation.
Again, thank you for the counsel! I have found myself obsessively worried over my child’s anxiety. The SPACE plan has given me a renewed hope that my child can attain relief and honestly it means the world.
I'm glad that your plan to remove the accommodation of you laying down in their bed has worked. Before you do something similar with the older accommodating sibling perhaps u could do some work with him on active resistance.. how he can regulate himself through deep breathing and changing thought patterns e.g. how his refusal of the requests to sleep with him can help his brother cope better long term...
Also, I'm suggesting some role play re possible Kick back scenarios from the anxious sibling in the form of name-calling, emotional blackmail, anger, violence in attempts to get him to comply etc. Maybe a strategy such as earphones and listening to music drowning out the pleas of the anxious child etc but only if he is not in danger of being physically assaulted etc. as you have said the anxious child did not like the last step but it worked this suggests this might work but it is about being equipped with self-regulatory strategies to will help your young accommodating sit out the possible long first few nights etc Well done on progress to date.