It never fails… every single night, just as I seem to fall into a deep sleep, I feel a tug on the sheets, a bump in the bed and then a kick to the back, and just like that my toddler is back in my bed again. I swore I would never sleep with my kids in my bed. I swore my kids would always sleep in their own bed… however, somewhere between kid number one and kid number three that went flying out the window, much like my quality of sleep. I’ve been doing some digging to put an end to our midnight cuddle sessions and wanted to share with you in case you are looking for simple tips to helping your kids sleep in their own beds.
Are you struggling with a child that likes to come into your bed at night? Maybe it’s because they can’t sleep or maybe they are scared to sleep alone. Although it can be absolutely adorable the first couple of times that they do it, eventually it becomes a habit and they are sleeping with you every night. Sleeping with your kids can be a bit uncomfortable and the bed becomes super crammed. Which means someone isn’t sleeping as deep as they could if everyone was in their own bed. If you are like me, you miss your sleep and would love to have your child sleep in their own bed. Here are a few tips to help.
Simple Tips to Help Kids Stay in Their Own Beds at Night
1. Don’t Give In: No matter how much your little ones beg and plead to sleep with you, don’t give in, even for special circumstances like illness or thunderstorms. (this can be easier said than done, right?) If you give in once, they’ll think that any time they beg for it that you will eventually give in and let them sleep with you. I know it may be hard to resist their adorable faces and cute little voices begging, but if this is something you really want you will have to stand your ground and not give in to the cuteness.
2. Make Their Room Comfortable: A lot of kids don’t want to stay in their room because they don’t feel comfortable or safe in their own room. They may even be scared that their are monsters or something in their room. It is important to get to the root issues causing your little one to hate being in their own room. It could be anything from sensory needs to anxiety. If it is a comfort issue… You can do adjust the room the proper temperature, diffuse essential oils, or even get a soothing sound machine.
3. Give Them Positive Reinforcement: Make having their own room sound like a really awesome thing by using positive words and encouragement. You can use phrases such as “I am proud of you for trying your own bed. You got this. You are safe.” If you use positive language about sleeping in their own room they will be much more excited about actually sleeping in their all by themselves.
4. Create a Schedule and Routine: I cannot stress the importance of routines and schedules enough. Kids need routine in order to function properly and to cooperate with transitions, changes and big milestones. By following the same routine each night, they will start to know and predict what is coming next in the nighttime schedule (including you leaving the room) . They’ll be so used to getting into their own bed it will be the norm for them and there will be no complaining and whining that they have to sleep in their own bed. (I love this book of sample routines and schedules!)
5. Take Them Back to Their Bed: If they do happen to come in to your room at night, do not let them into the bed. I know it may be hard to resist because you’re probably very tired but force yourself to get out of bed and put them back to bed in their own bed. Like I said before, don’t give in under any circumstances if you really want your bed back!
Keep these tips in mind if you are struggling with a kiddo that won’t stay in their own bed at night if this is something that really bothers you. For me, these tips worked 100% with my first two children. My husband actually loves having our little toddler in bed with us as he says she won’t be little forever… but me, I want her out!
My first two kids were beautiful sleepers (well aside from the night terrors of my oldest, but that is a story for a different time) but my toddler… She is a different kinda bird when it comes to sleep. I know these strategies work. I do, but for her… its just not as simple.
That’s why I have been taking this amazing course dedicated to helping me start having a better nights sleep. Sleep… ahhh sleep. How I miss you. Three years is too long to not sleep through the night. If you are like me and you have tried these simple tips for keeping your kids in their beds with no success, then I highly recommend this course, Coos to Snooze. It is a self-paced, in-depth course just for people like us…. tired people. She even has this awesome Free Course so you can check out if it is right for you!