Toddler bed

Ashley - posted on 05/02/2011 ( 166 moms have responded )

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So I've been wanting to put my 21 month old son into a toddler bed, however, my fiance thinks it would be a bad idea due to he would crawl out of bed and play with his toys. He doesn't have much closet space and has way too many toys to put in there. Is there any suggestions??

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Amanda - posted on 05/03/2011

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My son was in a toddler bed at 14 months, but my daughter will be 2 on 5/16 and I still am not ready to move her!! If you make sure there isn't anything they can hurt themselves with if they do decide to start playing it shouldn't be a big deal. I have had luck putting a gate in the doorway with the door left open. If he wakes in the night you will hear him cry, but if he gets up and is playing, eventually he'll get bored and fall back asleep (on the floor). If you decide to do it the important thing to enforce is that bedtime is bedtime and he doesn't get to come out of his room. Good luck!

Shawn - posted on 05/03/2011

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I have always been told to move them when they are trying to climb out. I am on #4, my 1st daughter didn't go into a toddler bed until she was 3, my 2nd daughter was just over 2 and my 3rd, well we took her out of the crib when the 4th baby came home and made a big deal out of the "big girl" bed, but I just got her to start sleeping in it. She was sleeping on the couch in the living room. I think I jumped the gun with her, with the new baby coming home, she felt like she was tossed out! The baby is now One and everyone is sleeping in their own bed. I would wait unitl your baby is ready, don't rush it.

Bonnie - posted on 05/02/2011

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For my boys if they aren't tired enough they tend to get out of bed and just stand there in the hallway (they think it is a game). They know daddy means business though. It rarely happens. Once they are asleep, they are asleep.

Stephanie - posted on 05/17/2011

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My son is in my old king single bed ans he doesn't play with his toys. He knows when it's bed time, it's bedtime.

Ashley - posted on 05/16/2011

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I put my son in a toddler bed on his first birthday. I've never had the problem of him crawling out because he cant see in the dark and we usually put him to bed when we go round 9-10 so hes tired by then anyways and just wants to sleep

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Patsy - posted on 05/30/2011

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My first son was 12 months old when he went into a big bed. He got out once or twice, we would take him back to his bed never had a problem after that. If you are really rorried Put his toys in a box and keep it in his room. teach him bed time is for sleeping if you need to take the box out of his room to do this which would be a shame because he would like to be able to play with them when he wakes in the morning. You and your fiance need to wait for the problem to start before you worry. let your little boy enjoy his room. he will learn bed time is sleep time if you give him a time for lights out stick to it. By the way I have 2 boys 23 & 20. We chose 7:30 for there bed time after dinner they had tv time/playtime inside. Go to the toilet clean there teeth got a book each or if they wanted i would read to them or they got to lisson to a story on a tape. with the light out. we never had a problem. But stop worrying enjoy him.

Christy - posted on 05/22/2011

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Is your son climbing out of the crib? Falling out? Those are the signs telling that it's time to make the switch to a toddler bed. Some babies do it at 12 months, others never do. Unless he's a climber or unless you're expecting another that will need the crib, there is no rush.

I would suggest getting a bookcase and some bins to help organize the toys so that once you switch out of the crib, it's easier to have everything put away. Or, get bins and put them at the top of the closet and rotate through the toys. This is a good age to teach him how to pick up after himself and put it where it belongs. If it doesn't have a place to go, that may be difficult later on.

Justina - posted on 05/22/2011

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We moved to a new house and couldn't figure out how to put the crib back together, so we got my then 24 month old a toddler bed- I thought just what your fiance thought but my Bubba loves it! And he sleeps the whole night through. Only one morning he got out of bed and crawled into bed with us, at 6am- really wasn't a big deal- he told me he had a nightmares. :P He'll be fine :)

Nicole - posted on 05/22/2011

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My daughter was about 24 months when we got her her own bed. Before that she was sleeping with me. She has toys out in her room in a big bin, but she usually has quite a few stuffed animals in her bed with her. She's much more likely to get up to come out looking for me or my husband than to get up to play, because it's dark in her room. She's usually very tired and falls asleep right away, or even before I leave the room. We just stuck to a very strict routine of watching a cartoon, having a bath, getting pajamas on, reading books, brushing teeth, telling stories and then singing songs. If she gets up, I carry her back to bed and tuck her in, surround her with her stuffed animals again, and tell her she needs to stay in bed, and then repeat the same words I used to say goodnight to her. Over the past year, there have been one or two nights where I had to do this 4 or 5 times, but usually she's tired, getting up is so obviously boring because she's always intercepted and put right back to bed, and so she falls asleep before she can cause too much mischief.

[deleted account]

Unfortunately for us we don't have enough room for another bed as my stepdaughter and son share a room right now. We live in a 2 bedroom house and looking to doing some renovations so that the kids can have their own rooms but until then they share a room and it isn't big enough for 2 single beds. The next step is bunk beds but my son is not quite ready for a big boy bed just yet :) Plus we don't have toys upstairs anyway, it is just the giggles and rough mornings that we have to deal with right now :)
Good luck with whatever you choose to do :)

Tiffany - posted on 05/20/2011

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He will play for the first couple of weeks, there is no preventing that. You will walk in to find him crashed in a mound of toys either in his bed or the floor. This is just one of the learning experiences he'll go through like walking. Eventually he will put together that playing equals being tired in the morning when it's time to get up. Just make sure he doesn't have anything that he can hurt himself with in the room and he'll be fine. Keep the monitor on still and listen in to make sure he's okay and you'll hear when he gives it up and falls asleep. I equate it to not eating. When they get hungry they'll eat. When they get tired, they'll go to sleep.

Jolinda - posted on 05/20/2011

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Unless he is getting out of his crib, I would keep him in there. The crib is the safest place for your little one. I have always kept all of my girls in their cribs until they could get out on their own.

Colette - posted on 05/19/2011

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I have heard not to change beds until he crawls out! My husband also wants to change his bed. I'm not sure. I guess it wouldn't be a bad idea, after all they still have to adjust sometime. I think it would be fine. He would still be in his bedroom so, when he gets tired he will learn to go to bed. It is all a learning process.

Kat - posted on 05/18/2011

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Go ahead and try it. Put what you can (maybe the noisiest ones) in the closet and "baby-proof" it at night. If he's tired enough, and if he has a bed-time routine, then there might not be a problem at all. Does he have a toy chest in his room? That or another storage bin might help keep them "out of sight, out of mind". My son has been in a toddler bed since he was about 18 months, and he's slept better in it than in his crib. You'll figure it out, but if you're going to put him in a toddler bed eventually anyway, why not try it out now and see how he takes to it? I'm assuming you can always go back to the crib if it doesn't work out...

Sarah - posted on 05/17/2011

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I suggest limiting his toys in his room. Take some out and put away and rotate them periodically. I had all my kids (5) in toddler beds by 13 months.

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We switched at 17 months. It has never ben a problem. She falls right alseep and we put up a baby gate when we go to bed so that when she gets up she plays with the toys in her room. Durin nap time we have to put the gate up right away or she comes out. Sometimes she gets her toys and puts them on her bed and plays until she goes to sleep, but she always does to sleep.

Jodi - posted on 05/17/2011

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My son is 28 months, and we have not put him in a toddler bed for the same reason. The only difference is that he shares a bedroom with us, so there are even more things that he could get into than just toys. Over the past week though, he has started crawling out of his crib frequently and tries getting in bed with us, which my husband thinks is fine, but I put him back in his bed dilligently so he doesn't think he can get away with it. I do think that at some point this week, we are going to have to set up his toddler bed and hope for the best. Goodluck to you.

Erica - posted on 05/17/2011

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my son is almost 3 and still in the crib. should be no harm to keep him in there until he's too big or climbing out!!

Amanda - posted on 05/17/2011

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You should wait closer to two years. I suggest 23 months. My daughter made the transition well. She like the toddler bed better then her crib. She didn't feel trapped. Just put the toys away so he can't play with them. But when are sleepy they won't really play with toys anyway. Well, at least from my experience. I thought my lil girl would do that same thing but didn't.

Cinthia - posted on 05/17/2011

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My daughter was 20 months old when I moved her to a toddler bed. We didn't have any problems until we moved to a town house and she was upstairs. She would get up and turn on the light and play. The only way I was able to fix this problem was to put a light switch guard on the switch. It was funny the first night she got out of bed and went to the switch (I was sitting on the stairs just out of view.) she started crying when she couldn't turn the light on. I then showed up at her door and told her to get back in bed and go to sleep. From that point on she stayed in bed.

She is now 15 years old, and I am now looking at our first boyfriend--oh boy oh boy.

Kirsty - posted on 05/17/2011

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you always have the worry that they will get out off bed. my daughter was a bit younger then 21 months when she went into her cotbed, i didnt have a problem wiv her and she had toys every were in her room. i told her she could take one thing into bed wiv her and that was fine she never got out off bed besides when it was mornning, and now she is three and half and in a big bed. and goes to the toilet her self in the night

Patricia - posted on 05/17/2011

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it sounds like at age 1 the kids are trained to go to bed in their toddler bed with no struggle, etc. if he isn't climbing out of it i would try to wait until he is 2 because that's when they understand enough english to be disciplined if they're not doing the right thing, i.e. time out.
when my son started climbing out we just lowered the bar and put a mattress on the floor so he wouldn't get hurt if he fell. we had a toddler bed but we had just gotten new carpeting and for some reason the bed stayed on the floor so we had a family bed. my son never really used his crib or toddler bed very much but when my daughter came along, when he was 3 1/2, i had her in the crib for safety from his inquisitiveness and wanting to play with her. :-)

Joanne - posted on 05/17/2011

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Don't making getting out of bed an option, also find a storage solution for his toys, my son's room is small as well so instead of leaving his dresser out in the room, I moved a high boy dresser into the closet and moved the clothes rod higher up inside the closet and used baskets on the upper shelf for storage. then you might have room to put some toy storage in the bedroom, such as those shelving units that hold 9 foldable storage baskets that you could coordinate with his room colors to hold alot of toys. If the toys are out of sight he will not want to get out of bed as much anyway. hope this helps :)

Sheila - posted on 05/16/2011

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if he can't crawl out and play with his toys AND he is awake he will just cry for you anyway...either he is not ready or you are not for a toddler bed...

Nadine - posted on 05/16/2011

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Make the rules clear, and then try using a sticker chart as an incentive - when you go to sleep with no fuss you get a sticker! And when you stay in your bed all night you get ANOTHER sticker! And when we get to 5 stickers you get a treat ie a small toy or book or special outing.

Andrea - posted on 05/16/2011

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I put my daughter in toddler bed at 14 months old and she has been in it ever since she has a lot of toys as well I take her toys out at night and I put in the hallway closet and then I put them back in the morning

Jana - posted on 05/16/2011

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My daughter is 32 months and still in a crib. It's working and not harming her so I see it as perfectly fine. You are right ....they will get out. We tried it. For some reason she will not climb out of the crib. I'm going to keep it this way for as long ad I can no matter what others opinions are. Just do what works for you. :)

Stephanie - posted on 05/16/2011

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when we did it we took most of our daughter's toys out of her room....most of them were already in the living room anyway. she's been in her bed for about a year now and the toys are back in there but it really did help to take most of the toys out when we made the switch

R - posted on 05/16/2011

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You can't keep him in a crib forever - he will get to the point where he will climb out of that as well, and that's just dangerous.

Celeste - posted on 05/16/2011

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Ashley sometimes it takes a few tries to get it to work. Give it a try and if not try again later. I know with my son who is 2 and a half we changed his crib to a toddler bed but he wanted to get out of bed all the time, so it went back to a crib again for a while(4 months). Then we tried it again and it was great. He stayed in bed for the most part. But after seeing his bigger cousins beds(only in the toddler bed for about 4 months total) he just had to go to his twin bed. Things are great he loves his bed now. I did not even buy the part to keep him from rolling out and he pretty much does not move when he goes to bed. All I can say is try it. All else fails try a twin bed. Kmart sells the complete cover for the mattress for about 10 bucks and it completely covers the mattress along with zipping up. Good luck!

Christina - posted on 05/16/2011

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I was always told the time to switch a child to his/her big kid bed is when they try crawling out of the crib to avoid injuries. That's what I plan to do with my daughter.

Dianne - posted on 05/16/2011

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Working this issue backwards: Start with the toys. Sort, store, donate, or throw away excess toys and keep out a few toys.Rotate toys in/out as he becomes bored. Also, give only enough toys for HIM to manage and that fit neatly in his room. Next begin teaching a bedtime routine which includes putting his room to bed. You can teach him to put away his toys in their special "place." That means every toy has a space and a place. Next he learns his "place" for bedtime which is his new toddler bed. You may help him select a special toy or stuffed animal that also has a bedtime "place" in his toddler bed to cut down on piles of toys in his bed. Good luck and enjoy!

Samantha - posted on 05/16/2011

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ive had my daughter in a toddler bed since 13-14 months and i have never had a problem. she jumps in her bed all by herself with her doll and goes to sleep. some nights if she i hyper i sit on her bed and read her a story while she drinks her juice....by the end of the story she is usually relaxed enough i just give her a kiss and say goodnight and leave

Debbie - posted on 05/16/2011

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Can you donate some toys to needy children? I had to when my children had too many toys, and I have 3 grown adult children, and 2 grandsons

Allison - posted on 05/16/2011

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I have a giant gate that I put around my 19mnth olds bed so she can't leave that area. Works great. She can get out of bed n grab what I have in the gate but thats all. She safe n no midnight wandering.

Christee - posted on 05/16/2011

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If your son isn't climbing out of his crib, don't be in a rush to put him in a toddler bed. My daughter was in her crib till she was 2 years. She still wasn't climbing out of her crib, but she was beginning to try. My daughter took to her toddler bed very easily and has only gotton out of bed when she wakes up. I have a basket of books and small toys next to here bed that she can play with before bed or after she gets up. Seems to help keep here in bed. And I suggest IKEA (if you live near one) for a toddler bed...they have some really nice and reasonably priced ones!

Sandra - posted on 05/16/2011

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He's going to have to learn sometime not to play with his toys and to go to bed. I have more difficulty with my daughter now she's 5 than when I first put her in. If they aren't tired....they will get up and play. You also want to take them out of the crib before they get frustrated and climb out. My son was put into his first bed when he was about 18 months because he'd crawl out of the crib and fall to the floor. I was afraid he'd get hurt. We removed anything that he could get into, put a latch on the closet door to keep it closed, put a gate at the top of the stairs, and a safety lock on the bathrrom door. We made sure if he did get up that there was nothing that he could get into that would be harmful to him. Lucky us...he would always come and wake us or climb in bed to snuggle.

Lisa - posted on 05/16/2011

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I would not move him unless he is crawling out of the crib. I had to move my son out of the crib at 9 mos because he started walking and would crawl out of the crib. It was difficult trying to get him to stay in the toddler bed. I would put a gate up at his bedroom door so that he cannot wander out of his room. If you move him, you will have to stay firm on making him stay in his bed at bed time. Good Luck.

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That is really silly! You just need to erpeat the rules! Set up rewards for the toddler going to bed and staying in bed! Be prepared for tears but it can be done with success!!

Mnisi - posted on 05/16/2011

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As long as he's safe,i mean not to fall down don't worry to much ! just worried if it is winter unless their room is warm .

Tiffany - posted on 05/16/2011

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Hi i have recently put my 21 month old into a toddler bed i have put one of the bed guards up to stop him falling out. He still gets out and plays with his toys on landing and his room sometimes take them into bed with him but he always gets back into bed when he sleeps

Vanessa - posted on 05/15/2011

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I put my daughter in a toddler bed at 18 months. If she did get out of bed I would stick her back in until she stayed. My daughter is now 3 and in a twin bed and I find she gets out of this bed more to get toys to sleep with than she did with the other bed. You can always box up half the toys so he's less tempted to play. No matter the kids age though they will get out of bed to play. Unless you take every single toy away from him there's always the chance he will get out of bed to play.

Pauline - posted on 05/15/2011

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Box up some of his toys, so there aren't so many in his room. He will soon get into the habit of sleeping instead of playing. Check on him from time to time and keep putting him back into bed until he gets the idea that he's supposed to be sleeping. It might take a few nights, but most little ones catch on quickly!

Ann - posted on 05/15/2011

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Well my son just turned 2 on April 10th .. we had taken the crib and took the side rail off and had put up one of those side bed nets as he would roll out of bed .. well he would wake up and play with his toys n the morning and when he tired he would knock and call out for us to be up. lol .. well for his 2nd birthday i found him a race car bed as his gift and assent into big boy hood. All he has in his room is toys and the bed. he does great and loves it. I believe doing this is giving him the freedom to learn and be independent and it helps to teach in dependency as well. I would its up to you to decide when you think that he will be able to handle the bed.. it took Christopher a few nights to adjust but he did well. GL

Jessica - posted on 05/15/2011

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If your son is not climbing out of the crib, keep him in there as long as possible. I've read many child "experts" who also agree with that. There is no rush to get into a toddler bed. We had my son sleep with one side of the crib down for about 6 months so he could get in and out, just to get used to the freedom of getting in and out of bed, but still be safe. Usually he just wouldn't bother getting out even though he knew he could. He'd only climb out in the morning and occasionally at nap time towards the end there. My son was 3 1/2 when we did put him into a toddler bed and he made the transition with not a single night out of the bed to play with toys. He still takes a 2 hour nap every afternoon and does not get out of bed. I say wait as long as you can because there is no rush and if done too young, they often do crawl out to play. good luck.

Lukithia - posted on 05/15/2011

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The best time I believe for changing to toddler beds is once they start climbing out the crib.my oldest made the transition smoothly at about 18 months. The second has aspergers syndrome and started climbing out her bed at like 12 months so we put her toddler bed in our room. When she was 3 she was in her own room. My son went from play pen to a twin bed when he he was almost three. They all slept most of the night with the occassional nightmare or thunderstorm wake up. If it becomes an issue keeping them in bed I like the idea that the Parents magazine editor did on raising sextuplets. Make sure the room is safe and they can't open the door. They will eventually settle down and fall asleep.

RITA - posted on 05/14/2011

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I too want to put him a toddler bed, but not sure if I can trust him... But not because of the toy issue you have. My son doesn't have very many toys.

Suzanne - posted on 05/12/2011

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Bins with lids maybe? I'd keep the room VERY dark at bedtime, and give him something for cuddling.

Roberta - posted on 05/12/2011

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Dear Ashley: I think he is a bit young to do this unless he is climbing out of his crib! One of the things you could do is remove the toys. I am a grandma now, but I know that I would send my kids to their rooms when they misbehaved. For my son Greg, it wasn't a real punishment as there were lots of toys in his room, so I know what you are saying. However, he needed a time out away from his two brothers, so it still was OK. Do you have a special routine you do at bedtime? I always read a story and every other night they had a bath. Maybe if you get him into a good night time routine he won't get up and play. If he plays at afternoon naptime, he is at least still having some quiet time which he and you need. Good luck.

Agata - posted on 05/12/2011

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my son and eldest daughter were moved out of cots into beds at 18 months due to necessity and next babys arrival. it is an adjustment period but once they get hat its bed time - not play time they will get used to the new sleeping arrangement. and maybe give your son a choice of 2 toys he can take to bed with him and limit himt o playing with those as he goes to sleep. i have found this very helpful with mine and it seems to keep them settled enough to go to sleep without getting up to find new toys. good luck :)

Carmen - posted on 05/11/2011

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I split my sons closet with a low and a high bar gave me double the space. Also put in some shelfs for toys. or you can also get a hanging net that goes in the top corner of the room for stuffed animals.. good luck!

Melanie - posted on 05/11/2011

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don't change your routine for getting ready for nap/bed. keep everything else the same and when you lay your child down expect the same. If you tell him not to get out of bed and he has had no history of getting out of bed then you are putting ideas in his head. I agree that you might start at nap time and then graduate to all-nighters. Try to have the same pillows and blankies from crib to bed so that it is still cozy and feels safer. Good luck

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