The One Where He Does Not Sleep

2016 was meant to be the year of organisation for me. I had so much planned for it, and productivity was going to be the central theme throughout, but to be productive, you need to have some sleep on board. You need to be well rested and to eat well which are two things I did not see 2016 in with.

autistic_child_in_pram_Dylan no longer sleeps, he will no longer settle off in bed by himself and stay asleep all night. When we put Charlotte and Oli to bed at 7 pm, he will stay downstairs with us until he falls asleep on the sofa. We then carry him upstairs and transfer him to his bed where he will sleep for a couple of hours before waking up for the day.

After a month of just barely any sleep, we were to try anything and everything! The last week I have been desperately trying to get hold of our paediatrician, our doctor has sent her a fax, and Dylan’s nursery teacher sent emails. We finally got to talk to her a couple of days ago, and she has agreed to see us at nursery briefly first thing tomorrow morning. The subject of Ambien (Zolpidem) sleep medication was bought up, but she explained she was reluctant to prescribe anything because of his age.

She did, however, suggest trying piriton something that we were already going to attempt after being told about it by another autism parent. I was excited about the prospect of it possibly helping so set straight out to the pharmacy for it, but at the same time, I felt like a failure for wanting to resort to this. I didn’t even admit to the pharmacist who, and what it was for, I said it was for a 6-year-old when asked the age of the child and I quickly followed that up by saying it was for my neighbour. She noted how it might make the child drowsy, and my mind instantly answered ‘I bloody hope so’.

We gave him a dose before bed, and nothing changed, and I realised to have time to work I would probably have to give it earlier which we did the next day and guess what happened come 7 pm?


He stayed this way until 2 am where he woke up and came into our bed and slept until the morning. We felt like different people that day, and I was able to function like a normal person. Last night it didn’t give us a 7 pm bedtime again, but once he was asleep, he stayed that way for a while.

Today is the first time this year I have been able actually to open the laptop and focus on the keys without blurry sleep deprived eyes. I am hoping tomorrow we can come up with a long term solution as I just cannot spend another day just sailing through it in a zombified state like I have done the last couple of weeks.