This morning, Alex rolled over to nurse, I popped him on and started to drift back to sleep.... normal morning routine.... then out of the clear blue sky he sits strait up, ripping off the boob (OUCH), and screaming bloody murder. HE WAS TERRIFIED!
It has been about 2 months since his last nightmare, and we thought that he had finally moved past them, but this morning was awful! My husband and I took turns trying to calm him down with every method at our disposal, I tried to nurse him, we tried walking with him, we tried to sing to him, we tried putting on Starfall to distract him, NOTHING worked. For 45 minutes, he cried like he was absolutely terrified.... then, we gave him some Tylenol....because he was all red and his temp was going up and he was going to make himself sick if he kept crying like that..... and started singing the abc's and twinkle twinkle little star (his favorite tune)... and about 5 minutes later he was calmed down and hiccuping from distress, teary eyes wide with fear, and glued to my chest (still wouldn't nurse) cuddling, with handfuls of my shirt clenched in his fist....
THIS CAN'T GO ON! My poor child has these terrifying nightmares and I feel so helpless! Is there counseling for 18month old kids? What can I do?
We have been with Alex his whole life, he has never been abused physically or mentally, never been left alone with a sitter, he doesn't go to preschool...... We practice Attachment Parenting and Gentle Discipline. We NEVER spank, hit, scream at him, or disrespect him, he has never had a time out. He has never witnessed violence, other than his birth by c-section and my seizures. We don't have television, we do watch movies and he loves Baby Einstein videos. He gets plenty of social interaction with other children, he loves visiting with family.
I really can't wrap my brain around why a child so young could have such terrifying nightmares.