How can I help my son to not be aftaid of his bed?

Candice - posted on 05/17/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )

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Ok moms, I have a problem. My step-son is 4 and has always slept with grandma. My husband and I are going to start trying to get him to sleep in his big boy bed and I need some advice. I have a night light, a moon that glows, and dream light stuffed animal, and we leave the closet door open with the light on. His father and I do sleep in there with him but he always goes back to grandma's bed sometime during the night. I do have another problem, he comes home from his moms scared to death of being locked in his room, and tells me that he can't get out of his room at his mommy's house and he crys and crys and got sick and no one came in to help him. What can I do to make sleeping in his bed more comfortable?

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[deleted account]

Certainly make it a nice routine for him to go to bed. Maybe look at redecorating his room to a theme that he likes, so that it is clearly his room that he likes and nobody else's. It sounds like he's got into some bedtime habits that need to be broken. Once he realises that it's fine to sleep in his own bed in his own room, on his own, he'll be fine. Also give lots of praise, especially for going to his bed to go to sleep, then for sleeping x amount of hours, then all night. Also the adults need to stop sleeping in his room as well, for this to work.

Should add that redecorating his room - either fully or something on a smaller budget like wall stickers/posters of his favourite programmes/characters.

good luck.

Candice - posted on 05/17/2012

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Thank you Beth, I like the thought of the rotation we will be talking to his grandparents to help us. Zach does have his own room, and plays in it often. We have asked his mother about the door being locked and she tells us she doesn't do that, but I have noticed that his door nob does lock on the outside of it.

[deleted account]

It is worth gradually breaking his dependancy on sleeping in the same bed as Grandma. Rope Grandma into this, if possible. Talk to him about that he needs to sleep in his own big boy bed. Between you, his Dad and also Grandma, (on a rotation maybe), one night one of you can sit with him till he falls asleep in his bed, gradually over a short period whoever's sitting with him that night, gradually moves away until he doesn't need anyone to be with him. As for the lights - would suggest reducing the light sources just to one (gradually, so that he isn't aware).

As you want him to sleep in his own bed, is it worth him having his own room, if possible, so that he knows that it's his 'zone'.

Think you need to deal with the issues about him sleeping at your home as one issue and also the incident at his Mum's as another. If possible, see if there is any way that your partner can find out about whether or not his bedroom door is locked (or not) when he's in the room.

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