Gone are the days when accessing our parents’ bedroom was prohibited, let alone sleeping in their bed!
These days, the number of toddlers sleeping with their parents has skyrocketed. We are breeding toddlers who are afraid of sleeping alone!
The trend is unlikely to buck soon. It is too easy to say yes, right?
As much as it might be annoying to you, the feeling of saying no to your little angel or prince is even worse, which is why most parents give in and within a short time, a month, 3 months, a year has passed with your bed having three occupants every night and no visible hope for change.
We cannot overlook that there might be a serious reason why your toddler wants to sleep in their parent’s bed, but either way, it needs to stop as soon as possible. Check out this handy guide below to learn more about why your Jack or Jess shares the warmth of your tiny or huge bed and how to correct this.
Reasons why your toddler wants to sleep in your bed
There are several reasons why toddler wants to sleep in their parents bed, and they include;
It’s a routine
Many parents feel it is safe and appropriate to doze the night off with their newborn, which is understandable for bonding and watching them.
The problem comes in when trying to define at what age the toddler should move to their baby cot or room and give you and your significant other space to be.
This age is a grey line, so it remains a routine even past the moving face, and the toddler grows knowing that this is the right thing to do and the only way to go.
They are scared
The dark is always frightening for toddlers, and there is no safer place to be than in the arms of mommy or daddy.
The calm and quiet invites mysterious noises and scary thoughts, which is why he or she will seek protection at your side.
A nightmare or night terror fresh in your mind could also be why your toddler seeks protection from you every night.
Depending on the sleeping patterns of your toddler, nursing might be the only thing that lures him or her to sleep. Research shows that the biggest percentage of toddlers find sleep when breastfeeding.
When this becomes a routine, it is automatically registered in the toddler’s brain that they will find uninterrupted sleep with you beside them. Since most breastfeeding mothers do it on their beds, they spend the night with the toddler.
Lack of sleep
If you have made it part of your toddler’s life cycle to take a nap every day, especially in the afternoon, there is a high probability that they will start lacking sleep at their expected bedtime as they grow.
Children are not wired to stay put; thus, leaving them on their beds without sleep or sleeping is a waste of time. Expect to see them walk into your room and hop onto your bed for a bedtime story.
We all know what transpires next.
By ensuring your toddler gets enough sleep, they may sleep more!
Compensating for time lost
Parenting is a lifetime career, and you need to allocate ample time to spend with your children.
Toddlers are needy people in nature, so they will always look for ways to compensate for the time you were away at work or on a business trip. Is there a better way of doing so compared to listening to a bedtime story or chit-chatting your way to sleep?
I don’t think so.
How you can stop your toddler from sleeping in your bed
Make their room sleep-friendly
As you seek stern action and insist your child sleeps in their room, you need to make sure that their room provides a safe and soothing environment for sleep. A room free of any objects such as toys and unnecessary noise that could brew into a nightmare.
Each child has a unique idea of a soothing environment, and you need to establish this first. Take time to study your child. What toys or dolls do they feel secure around?
What extra accessory in the room such as a radio with some soothing music or a rocking bed sooth them to sleep easily?
These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself as you seek to make their room a haven for uninterrupted sleep.
Use a light projector to settle your toddler.
This is part of making your toddler’s room friendly. Kids are quite curious and fascinated by new stuff, especially bright and attractive ones.
There are different light projectors, and you need to establish your toddler’s taste before you shop for one.
A good light projector should keep your child occupied when they lack sleep or suddenly wake up at night and get tempted to match into your bedroom and join you in bed.
Take it slow
Rushing things with children more often than usual turns out to be disastrous. If your kid has been sleeping at your side for some time now, or perhaps all their life, he or she will need time to adapt to the changes you are introducing in their lives.
Come up with a plan that is will take your toddler a step at a time towards the ultimate goal of sleeping in their rooms at night.
For example, you can begin by sleeping in their room with them and, as the days go by, sneak out at night for a while and then come back until they are completely comfortable to sleep through the night alone.
Once you begin transitioning your toddler to stop sleeping in your bed, do not take a step back. Not even once. It takes a strictly followed routine to make a habit, and this is what you need to work on with your kid.
You will have to send a clear and consistent message to your kid that the time to sleep in your bed is gone.
Establish an effective bedtime routine
A healthy routine will be of much help in getting your toddler ready for bed. As you begin, you can take part in the routine as a motivation to the kid and, over time, let go for them to do it on their own.
Helpful bedtime routines include reading books and taking a bath before going to bed.
Is it bad for toddlers to sleep in their parents’ beds?
It is not bad. Study shows that there is no negative cognitive effect with sharing the bed with your toddler, but you deny them the opportunity to grow to be independent.
At what age should a child sleep in their bed?
There is no specific age for children to start sleeping in their beds. This decision fully rests on you, the parent, to study your toddler since they are all different and judge the perfect time when they are ready to sleep independently.
How do I stop my toddler from coming into my bed at night?
• Make their room sleep-friendly
• Use a light projector
• Establish a helpful bedtime routine
• Take it a step at a time
• Be consistent
As a parent, you might feel the urge to spend the night next to your kid, even for a lifetime, due to the bond that ties you together. Still, it is important to let them go at the right time for him or her to grow to be independent and confident in getting things done without much or any help at all.