Can you guess why it’s so hard for me to sleep?

I’ve been talking about how tough it’s been to sleep at night when Emmett is dealing with separation anxiety. The last few days he’s been doing really well in regards to sleeping in his own bed.

Last night was a bit of a struggle. He ultimately made it into his own bed but he had to fall asleep in my room first.

If you ask him why he needs to sleep in my room, he’ll say something along the lines of he feels more comfortable. Sometimes it’s because he has a string of nightmares that really upset him. Yet on other occasions, he’s said that he’s afraid that if he’s not glued to me at night, he’s going to wake up in the morning and I’ll have left in the middle of the night, leaving him all alone.

I get it and I try very hard to work with him. Therapy has not been as helpful since going remote and it’s a struggle.

Last night, I was able to grab a picture of what I’m talking about.

This is what I’m often dealing with at night. It’s tough to sleep when I feel like I’m being strangled. 😂

It’s not always this challenging. On some nights, it’s simply that he ends up laying horizontally across the mattress and makes sleep nearly impossible to find.

There’s no easy fix for this because autistic kids work differently. Tough love is not always a good approach. Forcing him to stay in his room creates excessive anxiety that only serves to make things worse.

This requires time, patience, therapy, outside of the box thinking and a ton of positive reinforcement.

I just wanted to give you a little more insight into my challenges in regards to sleep. Can anyone relate?

Rob Gorski

Full time, work from home single Dad to my 3 amazing boys. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)
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Couldnt you use that one item you reviewed that inflatable kid space? It looked like a, tent. Then he could be in the same room be able to have you in eyesight and yet you both get rest? Kinda a win win?


Question? Is it actually good for Emmett to sleep with you the way he does, disrupting your sleep and making your function difficult? It seems to me this becomes a little bit of a boundary issue. Yes, he needs comforting. Couldn’t laying near you in the bed be enough…enough so you could actually let go and sleep? Because if YOU don’t sleep well, then it disrupts the entire family. I know it’s emotional but I’m not suggesting you refuse to let him sleep in your bed, just not let him keep you awake by clinging.

I’m autistic, and I’ve had emotional upsets, and I’ve had to learn to self-soothe 50 years ago. My mother hit a point where she was so sleep-lagged she slapped me. It was wrong, but it shocked me and I stopped asking her to sleep in my bed. It didn’t kill me. Granted, I was insecure and upset but had both parents and a relatively decent life. People who are extremely sleep-deprived sometimes do the unthinkable, like slap a child or shake a baby. Anyway, Emmett seems like a great kid but I would think he could understand YOU NEED SLEEP TOO to be a good dad?

ANYWAY, these are only my thoughts. I’m not in your situation and maybe Emmett MUST CLING and keep you awake. But it doesn’t seem safe overall. Love you all!