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Tantrums at bed time!

My daughter who is 15 months old has always had a good sleep routine. She wakes up at 7am, naps at 11.30am-1.30pm then bath before bed about 6pm, sleeping by 7. My daughter still has a bottle before bed and falls asleep on me then I take her up to her cot. The last couple of weeks as soon and she’s finished her bottle and I turn her in to cuddle to sleep, she arches her back, throws herself around screaming, won’t let me cuddle her at all. I have tried putting her in her cot to see if she’s had enough of being cuddled to sleep and wants her own space but she cry’s then too. I’m pulling my hair out, has anyone had a similar experience? I’m so stressed!


  • Yes with my now older girls. So i changed it instead of cuddling them as they had a bottle i lay with them in there room and read stories,have patients itll just be a phase but i no it feels like itll last forever,it wont i promise x
  • edited Apr 8, 2019 11:41AM

    This could be the reason,

    Temper tantrums

    Temper tantrums are unpleasant and disruptive behaviours or emotional outbursts. They often occur in response to unmet needs or desires. Tantrums are more likely to occur in younger children or others who cannot express their needs or control their emotions when they are frustrated.


    Temper tantrums or "acting-out" behaviours are natural during early childhood. It is normal for children to want to be independent as they learn they are separate people from their parents.

    This desire for control often shows up as saying "no" often and having tantrums. Tantrums are worsened by the fact that the child may not have the vocabulary to express his or her feelings.

    Tantrums usually begin in children 12 to 18 months old. They get worse between age 2 to 3, then decrease until age 4. After age 4, they rarely occur. Being tired, hungry, or sick, can make tantrums worse or more frequent.


    When your child has a temper tantrum, it is important that you stay calm. It helps to remember that tantrums are normal. They are not your fault. You are not a bad parent, and your son or daughter is not a bad child. Shouting at or hitting your child will only make the situation worse. A quiet, peaceful response and atmosphere, without "giving in" or breaking the rules that you set, reduce stress and make both of you feel better.

    You can also try gentle distraction, switching to activities your child enjoys or making a funny face. If your child has a tantrum away from home, lead your child to a quiet place, such as the car or a restroom. Keep your child safe until the tantrum has ended.

    Temper tantrums are attention-seeking behaviour. One strategy to minimize the length and severity of the tantrum is to ignore the behaviour. If your child is safe and not being destructive, going to another room in the house may shorten the episode because now the drama has no audience. Your child may follow and continue the tantrum. If so, do not talk or react until the behaviour stops. Then, calmly discuss the issue and offer alternatives without giving in to your child's demand.


    Make sure that your child eats and sleeps at their usual times. If your child no longer takes a nap, ensure that they still have some quiet time. Lying down for 15 to 20 minutes or resting while you read stories together at regular times of the day can help prevent tantrums.

    Other methods to prevent tantrums include:

    • Use an upbeat tone when asking your child to do something. Make it sound like an invitation, not an order. For example, "If you put your mittens and hat on, we will be able to go to your play group."
    • DO NOT battle over unimportant things like which shoes your child wears or whether they sit in the high-chair or booster seat. Safety is what matters, such as not touching a hot stove, keeping the car seat buckled, and not playing in the street.
    • Offer choices when possible. For example, let your child pick what clothes to wear and what stories to read. A child who feels independent in many areas will be more likely to follow rules when it is a must. DO NOT offer a choice if one does not truly exist.


    If temper tantrums are getting worse and you do not think you can manage them, seek the advice of your health care provider. Also, get help if you are not able to control your anger and shouting or if you are worried that you may react to your child's behaviour with physical punishment.

    The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that you call your paediatrician or family physician if:

    • Tantrums get worse after age 4
    • Your child injures himself or herself or others or destroys property during tantrums
    • Your child hold their breath during tantrums, especially if they faint
    • Your child also has nightmares, reversal of toilet training, headaches, stomachaches, anxiety, refuses to eat or go to bed, or clings to you 
    Hope this helps you, Good Luck!!
  • Thank you so much for the post.
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