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Middle of the night negativity

(43 Posts)
soos45 Sat 07-Sep-19 05:28:02

Does anyone else suffer from middle of the night negativity?
After the compulsory early hours bathroom, visit my mind refuses to settle back to sleep and works it's way through many facets of my life where things can go wrong- my health, DH's health, upcoming house move, finances, DS and DD's futures....and so it goes on. Can be an hour or more when I envisage anything that can go wrong WILL go wrong. Sleep eventually comes but this needs to stop. In daylight hours I'm a positive happy person ...and I really need a full night's sleep!! Any ideas???

BBbevan Sat 07-Sep-19 05:48:05

Yes I am exactly the same. It started a few years ago when DGD was bullied at school and I worried about her. I think it has become a habit now. I regularly have a few sleepless hours in the middle of the night. I try not to let it worry me as I can always have a nap during the day.
Last evening we went out and came home late, for us. Slept right through with only one bathroom visit !!!

absent Sat 07-Sep-19 05:55:30

Worrying things – whatever they are – almost always seem worse if you wake up and start thinking about them in the middle of the night. It as if the rest of the world is peacefully and contentedly asleep and you are the only one awake and thrashing about, turning over the pillows every five minutes. It is the same when you are unwell and in pain during the night.

One way to get back to sleep is to concentrate on and repeat a single word. "The" is a good one because it is so easy. Just keep saying – or whispering if you have a partner who might be disturbed – "the, the, the, the". It sounds silly, but it stops your mind wandering off to the stuff that bothers you. Worth a try.

Willow500 Sat 07-Sep-19 06:10:09

Yep middle of the night if I fully wake up my mind goes into overdrive. I try to combat it by thinking of boring stuff like what I'm doing the next day or what to wear. It was much worse years ago when I was working and I've seen me up at 3 am doing cashflow forecasts and worrying about paying bills. Madness!!

BradfordLass72 Sat 07-Sep-19 06:39:55

I'm a sufferer too but I have a CD player beside my bed and play a talking book. Currently it's the old 'Navy Lark' episodes! smile
If you share a bed, you can use those earbud things so you don't disturb the OH.

Listening to that usually forces my mind away from negativity. If not, I get up, make a cup of tea (decaf) and let the mood, if it is a mood, pass.

I often wonder if it's hormones because sometimes I wake so terribly frightened, although there's nothing to be scared of at all.
When I told my friend Jane about this, years ago now, she said, 'Oh yes, you mean "nameless dread" it's hormones.'

So maybe this is too. We do know for sure that many women become extra sensitive and anxious post-menopause due to the decrease in oestrogen.

As I have mentioned before I also stopped accessing news of any kind because although I had no family problems to worry about, the world's issues would get to me. sad

When I read that 7 million children under 5 died every year from lack of clean water, health care and food - I didn't sleep properly for months.

GagaJo Sat 07-Sep-19 07:23:45

Yup. 4am fears. IF I wake up, I get it. I've had insomnia this week, because I'm back at work after the summer hols and inevitably, the 4am fears are back.

PLUS, my grandson (daughter and grandson live with me) is in the middle of a sleep regression and often up at night. I don't get up with him but I hear him and wake up too.

M0nica Sat 07-Sep-19 07:32:23

I retreat to a neighbouring bedroom with the radio on very quietly. I make the move without turning on any lights so that I do not fully wake. Classic FM or World Service/R4.

Sara65 Sat 07-Sep-19 07:38:41

Everything seems ten times worse in the middle of the night, as you said soos, you become aware of everything that can go wrong. I too regularly spend a couple of hours a night imagining worse case scenarios.

loopyloo Sat 07-Sep-19 07:38:51

If it's any consolation, I should think half the UK is awake at 3am worrying with you. At the moment I am, as moving on Thursday and have a lot to pack and the tenant hasn't moved out yet!

DanniRae Sat 07-Sep-19 07:42:03

Yes it happens to me. As soon as I realise what it is going on I make myself think of other - preferably boring - stuff. Most times this will help me drop off to sleep again.
I live beside a reasonably busy road and if all else fails I listen for a car and then count the time between that one and the next one. Sounds a bit daft but it takes my mind to a new place.

GrannyGravy13 Sat 07-Sep-19 07:54:31

Oh yes I have "2am troubles", I worry about "what if scenarios", things I should have done years ago, and all sorts of things that wouldn't enter my head in daylight hours.

MamaCaz Sat 07-Sep-19 08:05:08

I'm similar, and if my mind tires of the 'worries', it then starts trawling through the folders in my brain labelled 'embarrassing', pulling out past incidents that still make me cringe. Then it moves on to 'insecurities', opening memories that can still reduce me to tears ... .
There's no wonder I have so many sleepless nights!

Maggiemaybe Sat 07-Sep-19 08:43:56

One way to get back to sleep is to concentrate on and repeat a single word.

I’ll try that, absent, thank you.

One thing that has worked for me is counting backwards in, say, 7s, from a high number, eg 700.

gillybob Sat 07-Sep-19 08:51:21

I also suffer from “middle of the night anxiety” soos45 it’s awful and as though every worry has come to me at the same time and they just go round and round driving me mad.

One thing I sometimes do is to take myself to a happy place in my memory (it’s either a place in Ibiza or our old caravan) I walk around touching things and seeing the views that I remember and it kind of settles me . Of course it’s sad when I wake up and realise that I wasn’t really there.

The other thing I do is to imagine a lottery win and plan how I would spend it . That sometimes works too but again can be quite depressing when you wake up .

Grannybags Sat 07-Sep-19 09:00:31

Yes another one here awake 3/4am usually for an hour or so.

Once I've gone through all the things I worry about I'll count backwards, but sometimes I get to 0 and have to start again!

I do sometimes think of coming on GN but decide I'd never get back to sleep then....!

Anniebach Sat 07-Sep-19 09:02:24

Me too. Things I will not allow to come to mind in the day
come in the night .

TerriBull Sat 07-Sep-19 09:14:00

You're not alone soos, don't know whether it came with the menopause, but yes another" whirring middle of the night brain syndrome" person here, all my anxieties scramble for space in my mind, it all goes on for quite a while and then I seem to fall asleep just when I should be waking up. What a curse it is, but I suspect it's really common sad

gilbo21 Sat 07-Sep-19 09:33:36

Good morning all. I’ve been suffering for a few months with terrible anxiety and sweats which at first my gp put down to the wrong blood pressure medication. I’m now on a new one and also fluoxetine for anxiety. My gp is now thinking along the lines of hrt but I’m 63? Has anyone else gone on this at that age.?

soos45 Sat 07-Sep-19 09:50:10

Thanks for your responses everyone. Nice to know it’s not just me being a bit batty grin . Will try some of your suggestions...thanks.

Bridgeit Sat 07-Sep-19 09:50:39

Me too, I think it is an unwanted but inevitable side effect of having a mother hen personality.
I believe if we grew up having to shoulder a little too much responsibility at too young an age it will have had some impact on our behaviour. ie If something goes wrong it will be my (our ) fault.
The adult brain, common sense & emotion then has to rationalise our thoughts to gets us back on an even keel, which can be exhausting.

seacliff Sat 07-Sep-19 10:14:42

Sometimes I try reading. It takes me out of myself.

It must be a lightish subject, a good easy to read novel, something that draws me in and makes me forget my problems. After 20 minutes I can often settle down again and the story is now what's on my mind. Worth a try, although I do realise that sometimes, you just can't face reading.

EllanVannin Sat 07-Sep-19 11:00:55

Oh yes, 1000 and 1 things go around in the brain if I happen to wake in the night/early morning which isn't that often might I add but when it does, I have to stay up after my odd visit to the loo as I'm really wide awake.

I look out of the curtains to see if there are any lights on anywhere and signs of life, then I make a cuppa. It's usually between 02.30 and 0300am. It can be a long night. I tend not to worry too much as it doesn't happen often fortunately and can catch up on sleep the following night.

It's so quiet at the best of times where I live and dead of night is even more so with not a vehicle in earshot, not good if you're an anxious person. I'm always glad to see 6am to switch on the news and feel back in the land of the living.

Sara65 Sat 07-Sep-19 13:08:56

We live opposite a care home, and there are always lights on throughout the night, I find that comforting, knowing someone else is awake.

Davida1968 Sat 07-Sep-19 13:17:22

Yes, sometimes I do have the "keep-me-awake-in-the-middle-of-the-night-worries"; I had them last night. I take comfort from knowing that (for me) things will always look at least a little brighter/better in the morning. (And often a lot better.)

Rufus2 Sat 07-Sep-19 14:24:30

How about this! 3a.m UK time is mid-day here, lunch-time! Feel free to post me and I'll give you a running commentary on my lunch menu! Guaranteed to bore you back to sleep! grin