Babies bedtime - my son doesn't like bedtime!

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Babies bedtime - my son doesn't like bedtime!

Postby alexabeazer » Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:56 am

My son is 20 months old. He has recently learnt how to climb out of his cot at night. This has given us lots of problems as before we could just put him to bed and know he would stay in bed. Now, we know he can a? climb out and b) possibly hurt himself if he does clamber out.
So we have now taken the side off the cot, which now means he just won't stay in his cot and refuses to go to bed until very late on in the evening (when we are going to bed!)....
I know that a regular and predictable bedtime routine is sometimes recommended to help with this. We are trying all we can, but at the moment, it is just proving very tricky to get our son to stay in his bed and bedroom when it is his bedtime.
Any advice/tips would be greatly appreciated.
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Re: Babies bedtime - my son doesn't like bedtime!

Postby Lukesmummy » Tue Jul 22, 2014 12:40 pm

I have just been through something similar. I was horrified when my son starting escaping but in reality, we got into a new "big boys bed" routine within a few days and now have no problems.

Firstly I would advise buying a children's book on 'my big boys bed' - there are a few around to choose from. Reading the book to my son helped him understand that he was now old enough to sleep in a big boys bed (cot with side off) and not his cot. It made it seem like an exciting change for him.

Secondly, and this will take some work perhaps, be consistent with the routine. We maintained the exact same bedtime routine as before (bath, story, into bed) but clearly it doesn't take long for them to realise that they can get out of bed themselves. We gently explained to our son that he shouldn't get out of bed without mummy or daddy as it was dangerous (it actually is dangerous in our house so this was important) and that when we said good night it was time to sleep in his big bed. The first night was the worst of all and I think he got out about 50 times in the space of 30minutes!! I sat outside of his bedroom door and every time he came out I would gently tell him "it's bed time now" and put him back into bed. He thought is was great fun initially, coming out and seeing Mummy there but after an hour or so, he got quite upset. Eventually, after many, many more escapes he stayed in his bed and fell asleep. The next night was similar but better, and after that he just got it and we've never had any escapes since. Consistently is the rule here!! If he gets out, he goes back in, mummy comes out of the room - no discussion.
Even now, a few months on, we do not encourage him to get out of his bed alone. We ask him to wait for mummy or daddy to get him. This is mostly due to our highly dangerous staircase but is a useful rule nevertheless.

I hope you have similar luck! All the best!
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Re: Babies bedtime - my son doesn't like bedtime!

Postby nuttymummy » Tue Jul 22, 2014 9:35 pm

We had a similar issue - my daughter started somersaulting out her cot at about this age and then would not stay in her bed. We tried for several weeks to get her to stay in her big girl bed but it proved near on impossible and being heavily pregnant at the time I seriously struggled with the exhaustion of having to constantly take her back. It's also quite dangerous if a child that age has free reign of the house whilst you're asleep - we found her in the kitchen at 3:30am one day playing on the kitchen table having climbed furniture to stand on in order to switch on the lights etc . We eventually resorted to this which she couldn't escape from ... B0081YUOBC and she then transferred to a proper cot bed when she was more able to understand that she was required to stay in it!! We put the cot mattress in ours to make it more 'comfy' and it became a real little den that she loved. I would say give it a while first to see if you can get your little boy to stay in his bed but in the event it fails this could be a good option! Good luck!!
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Re: Babies bedtime - my son doesn't like bedtime!

Postby Battersea Mummy » Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:09 am

Ditto, with experiencing this problem with our son. When he initially started climbing out of his cot we resorted to putting his zip up Grobag on with the zip at the back, so he couldn't take it off and climb out of the cot. This gave us about another six months use out of the cot, until he started throwing himself out of the cot even with the Grobag on.

At that point we conceded to removing his cot sides, but that resulted in two weeks of hell with him refusing to stay in bed at night, up until about 10pm screaming, dropping his nap during the day and a whole world of other crazy behaviour because he was so tired. Just what you want when you have a three month old as well. The only thing that reestablished some boundaries for him was by putting a Baby Dan extra high pet gate on his bedroom door to at least keep him in his bedroom (he can just climb over a normal height stair gate).

In summary, I'd try and keep your child in the cot for as long as possible, as life is never quite the same again. Our son is still not keen on going to bed, but makes much less fuss about it, most of the time! However, he is up ridiculously early most mornings, 5.40am today, yawn, and often wakes during the night. Prior to ditching the cot he slept perfectly for 12 hours over night plus 2 hours after lunch. Now we're lucky if he is sleeps for 10 hours over night with no nap during the day.

Good luck