Most kids love to sleep with their parents and it is quite common that kids that are already in school revert to Mom’s and Dad’s bed every now and then. If you are used to the co-sleeping it probably doesn’t bother you much but if you never really co-slept it can be annoying. People speak about little babies crying when they have to sleep alone but what about crying toddlers? How can you make a co-sleeping toddler sleep in his own bed? Here are some ideas and advice for how to do it.
Move to His Bed
Start sleeping together in your toddler’s bed. At bedtime you go with your toddler as if you are also going to sleep and then you slip out. Later at night your toddler might wake up and demand to come to your bed. At this point you can come back to his or let him join you. To be effective you should get yourself out of bed and soothe him back to sleep in his.
Before your toddler goes to sleep you can explain that you will sleep in your bed and that he is welcome to come over when it is morning again, light outside and so on. He might tell you that he doesn’t like this idea but you will simply explain to him that this is the new order and that you need to rest. By preparing your toddler for sleeping in his own bed till the morning it will make the transition easier for him.
Learn to Wait
Many times your toddler will wake up during the early evening and it could be that he needs to do nr 1. If this is the case you go with him and then soothe him back to sleep in his bed. If he wakes up momentarily and make noise you shouldn’t run to his bed immediately. You can simply call him from the other room and announce that you are there and that all is OK. You’ll be amazed to see that this often does the trick.
Making a co-sleeping toddler move to his bed demands patience and lots of kindness. You can’t expect a change in a few days it might take several months. If your toddler suddenly returns to your bed frequently he probably needs some extra closeness at night. Give it to him and stick to the pattern described above. If he feels safe the transition will be faster and easier.
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You want to co-sleep but your partner says “no, no kids in our bed!”
This is a quite common scenario and it can create problems in the marriage if you don’t solve this issue in a respectful and working way. If the mother doesn’t want to co-sleep things are pretty easy to work out. The father might have great ideals of everyone sleeping together but if Mom can’t handle it he most likely will let her decide.
It is more difficult when the father doesn’t want to co-sleep. In this situation the mother might move to her own bed with the kids and this is very hurtful for Dad who gets to sleep alone.
It is very important to remember that things are not black or white and kids grow up. Still, during those years that co-sleeping is a possibility you need to work out a good plan for how. Listen to each other and try to make a compromise. Perhaps you can co-sleep in one room and have your own bed in another.
If the father feels that the mother only partly co-sleeps and then joins him he won’t feel as abandoned, especially if he knows that they have an agreement to do things this way till the kids sleep through the night.
Kids do enjoy co-sleeping but kids also need happy parents that respect each other. It is not worth making a fight over this issue since the most important is for the kids to grow up in a harmonious and respectful environment where they can develop into harmonious and respectful adults!
Co-sleeping with many kids can be fun and very relaxing but you won’t succeed unless you work on the space and the rules for co-sleeping.
First of all, you must have space for co-sleeping if you are planning to let a lot of kids come and co-sleep with you. You might consider having a bedroom consisting just of beds. You won’t see the floor and cleaning will be a hassle but at least you will all sleep good and comfortable.
Make sure that small babies get the safest space and that everyone knows just where they are allowed to co-sleep. You decide who sleeps where and if they don’t stick to these rules you simply pitch them back to their own bed.
Let the kids start sleeping in their own beds and explain to them that they are welcome to yours but only if they come very silently and let you sleep. Make a rule that says that co-sleeping is allowed but it is not allowed to make noise or wake Mom before there is light outside. Even very small kids can understand this reasoning and they will be happy to oblige.
Don’t overdo it! Ask yourself if you really enjoy the co-sleeping. If it gives you good rest and you are not bothered by sharing your bed it is great but if it is difficult for you it might be a bad idea. You shouldn’t co-sleep because all of the popular psychologies tell you that this is the best. You should do it because it is the best for you!
If co-sleeping with many kids drives you nuts you need to kick them out of the bed gently but firmly. Perhaps a mattress on the floor will do till they get that the best place to sleep for them is in their own beds. If you have been blessed with many kids you should also consider that they can co-sleep without you!