Whether you intended on your child co-sleeping with you or not, at some point you will make the decision to transition your child into their own bed. This step for myself has been somewhat of an internal tug of war. On some levels I am ready for our toddler to move into his own room and bed, however because I believe this will be our last “baby” a part of me wants to hold onto him just a bit longer. Nevertheless it is important for your child to become an independent sleeper. Here are some tips on how to transition your child from co-sleeping and into their own bed.
This is a partnered post. All opinions are mine alone.
5 Tips to Transition Your Child from Co-Sleeping:
- Discuss it – If your child is old enough, begin to discuss the idea of them moving into their own room. Giving your child time (about a week or so) to “process” the idea with many reminders from Mom and Dad will help your child get more comfortable with the idea of sleeping in their own bed.
- Encourage them – Encourage your child to be apart of the “moving” process. Take them to the store with you to pick out their own bed, bedding, room theme, etc. Make this transition about an exciting new adventure and include your child in the decision making process.
- Introduce a Transitional Object – Children need to feel secure. Up until now YOU have been their “security blanket.” Introducing your child to a new blanket, doll, or plush toy specific for bedtime will help them feel more comforted at bedtime. The goal of the transitional object is to help calm your child and offer a sense of security.
- Baby Steps – This isn’t a rip the bandage off type of process. It’s transitional and therefore requires baby steps. For the first few nights sit in your child’s room as they get comfortable with the new sleeping arrangements. Remember to encourage your child to fall asleep in their own bed, but from a distance. Every 2-3 days move your chair position closer to the door until you have eventually made your way out of the room. This process make take a week or more depending on your child’s comfortableness.
- A Consistent Routine – Begin a bedtime routine 30 minutes prior to bedtime. This is a time for your child to wind down. Things like taking a bath, reading a bedtime story, and breathing exercises may all be helpful to your child. The most important key is to be consistent with the routine and the hour in which your child goes to bed. Because children thrive on routine, sticking closely to one that works for you and your child will help the transition process to be successful.
We took L to the store to pick out his canopy bed, Despicable Me bed sheets, and even his wall paint color. We then offered a transitional object, a minion night light that I found at Tech4Kids. Since many kids, including his older brother are uncomfortable in a dark room, offering a night light can make a child feel more secure.
The Tech4Kids Minion Night Light is made of a soft material that is plug free and portable. The night light automatically turns off after 10 minutes, offering a safe and convenient solution for parents and children.
Remember, when you are ready to transition your child from co-sleeping take baby steps and stay consistent. Soon enough your little one will be an independent sleeper, and you will be free at last! 😉
Did you co-sleep with your child? What steps worked for you when transitioning?
It was a long battle for years with my son
Janet W. says
My grandsons have slept in their own beds from day one. Luckily this isn’t a transition we’ve had to deal with. I can see how it could be difficult for the child to transition to their own room/bed.
Brenda Haines says
Thanks for the tips! I have got to get my son to sleep in his own bed.
Erica B. says
Mine goes to bed by herself just fine, but wakes up wanting to lay with me!
Toni @ Debt Free Divas says
I am now. Working on transitioning. She’s almost a year. I need to be more consistent. That’s the goal!
We never co-slept so I never experienced that transition. However we just ‘transitioned’ our daughter to college this past fall, and even at 18 she still took a ‘transitional’ object (her Stitch stuffie) and put up a string of pineapple lights on her dorm room bed 🙂
Maria H says
I’m having a hard time! When I put my little girl in her crib she will sleep in it for about 30 mins and her arms start swinging trying to feel me and if course she wakes up! Trying but it’s hard. But, I think it’s part me too since this is my one and only baby. I think we both look forward to snuggle time!
Jennifer H says
I can relate! You are doing great mama – hang in there!
Wendi S says
It is so hard. I always heard no matter what you feel on the inside to “act” like its so perfect. I can’t say I am good at that.
Shell Feis says
This post came at the perfect time because I am about to start getting our baby out of the bed. I’m feeling the same way- not quite ready for him to “move out” but knowing that we will all be better off once he is in his own room.
Jennifer H says
Good luck with the transition process Shell!
My youngest had a hard time transitioning. He would go to bed in his room but climb in bed with us in the middle of the night!
Jennifer H says
Yep…that’s what is happening here. I need to be consistent for this to work.