Very frustrated mom !!! -Needs help with 15 month not wanting to sleep in his crib !

Jaime - posted on 05/25/2009 ( 13 moms have responded )




I need some help please !! my son is 15 months old and i've been laying with him on the floor until he falls asleep then I carry him to his crib where he will sleep until about 4 or 5 am then wake up crying at the top of his lungs and will not lay back down . I have played music for him, I've gave him a warm bottle, I've sang to him, rubbed his back, but he wont stay laying down.. he wants me to pick him up. When I finally do pick him up we go lay on the coach until he falls asleep. Then when he's asleep I lay him in his crib but as soon as I bend down to lay him in he grabs onto me as hard as he can, even if when do lay him down anyways he gets back up and screams! After trying over and over I gave up and let him sleep in our bed with us.. Now its happening every night, when before it only happened a few times a week !! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASe help !! I dont want to keep getting him into the habit of sleeping with us.. but I dont want him to cry all night... Oh ! And last night I did let him cry for 30 mins straight and when i picked him up he threw up every where.. I felt horrible !


Maureen - posted on 06/23/2009




I have three children. The first two both stopped sleeping through the night around 15 months. We took the side off the crib so it was a day bed style. We have one the lifetime cribs that will convert to a full size bed when they need it. We would tell stories in the room and sing some songs and then we left a night light on so if they woke up it woundn't be so dark. We also gave a sippy cup of water if they were thirsty in the night. When they woke up I had a blanket next to their bed they I laid down on and held their hand for a few minutes and then I would stay a few minutes longer. I rubbed their back but I never picked them up. I found once I picked them up it would wake them up more. It is common to have night terrors now so I found that they weren't really awake just screaming in their sleep. I used to reach my hand in through the crib and it would just frustate both of us. I started going in frequently but it got better after a couple of weeks. Good luck

Shannon - posted on 06/21/2009




OK ... I don't have any sleep advice that these Mom's haven't already given but I can tell you this and maybe it will help. At 15 months old he's fully aware of where he is. He's not hurt and in pain when he cries, he is mad. He's going to be mad a lot in his life and you are just teaching him now how to deal with it. He's not an infant, he is literally crying to you because he doesn't like your rules. Every night he will be mad for less and less until he just falls asleep without a fuss, as long as you don't show that you are upset. You can do this.

(This goes for letting him cry it out OR just any amount of crying he may do as you teach him to sleep in his crib. I may sound all tough, but this is the speech my husband gives me when I'm about to give in when my son is crying. I know how you feel. But you CAN do it!)


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Samantha - posted on 06/20/2009




My eldest daughter, now 2 1/2, refused to sleep in her cot from the time she turned 12 months. I could even have her sound asleep in my arms & put her down in the cot soooooooo gently, but she would always wake immediately & start screaming. I never worked out exactly what the problem was. Like you, I also used to sleep on the floor with her for a while ( I was pregnant with my second at the time, so it wasn't exactly comfortable!). We ended up getting her a single bed & putting another mattress on the floor beside it in case she fell out, but also to sleep in there with her when we had to - which was most of the time. You can buy safety rails for beds at baby stores & online if you prefer to do it that way. I have only started being able to sleep in my own bed for the entire night just recently. But she loves her bed, so that may be the solution?

Karina - posted on 06/10/2009




I find that controlled crying is the best thing i did it with my daughter and my son, you just need to be firm and understand that what you are doing is best for him as painful as it is for us to hear them crying in the end it is worth it!

You need to make him awhere of bed time i did this by making my children say goodnight to everyone including pets and even some of there teddys. You also need to make sure there are no toys, mobiles in the cot as they dont require anymore stimluation, once in the room read a book whilst he is in his cot... Then begins the crying =(

if you hop on your knees with your arms through the cot (if you reach over they tend to think you will pick them up) you rub or pat their tummy or back for no longer than 10min (make sure there is no eye contact) then leave the room for 2min and return doing the same thing but this time it will be a 9min stay and 3min out the room and so on i found that if make a 2min min stay and a max 10min out it takes a while to work but it is easyier to get on top of it whilst he is in the cot otherwise it is just awful trying to do it once they are in a bed..


Ally - posted on 06/10/2009




we have been switching our daughter from sleeping in bed with us to her own crib right now too (she slept with us for 14 months). ...we have been doing it for about 2 weeks now and have only had one night that she woke up and wouldn't settle and came to bed with us around 4am. It is definately a process it worked really well for us to put the crib in our room and we have also been having her take her naps in there as well. I usually end up laying next to her crib for about ten min while she falls asleep but every night is getting better :) Just remember that it is a big transition for a baby used to being in bed with mom and dad so try and be patient ..and hopefully it won't take too long!

Karla - posted on 06/01/2009




This is what worked for me...First of all I put his crib in our bedroom this might sound silly but since my son has a lifetime crib and im pretty small anyway it can hold our weight.. so I would lay w/him until he fell asleep then he wasn't surprised when he woke up in it. or my husband would lay on the floor next to the crib and hold his hand. We only had to do this a couple of nights. Dont get me wrong sometimes he would whine (testing me b/c his father gives in) but I would explain that he had to sleep there, and he would give in right away. But if my husband was around... my son knew that if he cried enough daddy would come get him. Anyway, after he was used to it we turned his crib into a toddler bed, which helped him feel like a big boy and we made sure to tell him often how kool he was for having a big boy bed.. and a few days later we put it back in his own room along w/stickers of his favorite theme on the wall which he helped me put up and bran new night lights. Now he is almost two, and has no trouble sleeping alone, I can tuck him in and walk out before hes even asleep.. from time to time I will lay w/him, its better than brining him to our bed, a little tougher on me but very much worth it, or if we are watching a movie in my room i let him know that if he falls asleep we will take him to his bed... I always explain everything to him, If I say it I have to stick to it (even if I change my mind), and we give him lots of praise for good behavior and ignore the negative behavior. Sorry for the long note, I hope it helps! good luck!

Oh! and by the way this whole process only took about 3 wks.. and well worth it!

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Sounds to me like it might be best to set small goals. Going to sleep by himself and sleeping through the night within a week or so seems painful for everyone. Yes, you could let him cry it out, but I don't think that's always the best solution. My two cents is that you ought to start out by staying in the room where his crib is, no matter when he wakes, and not give him anything but hugs and cuddling. My 16 month old cries for a minute or so when she doesn't get what she wants in the night, but surprisingly, if I offer my presence, she calms down faster than I would think. If the problem is putting him back down in the crib, I'd try sleeping on the floor next to his crib with one side off, or the crib mattress on the floor. I think once you get to where he knows that once it's bed time, he stays in his room and doesn't get to go anywhere (the couch, your bed), you will be able to make the commitment to not picking him up more easily, and he'll probably be more ready for it.

You may not like this idea, but I'll tell you what gets everyone in our house the most sleep right now: We put the crib in our room with one side off. Baby is no longer allowed to sleep IN our bed, but we are nearby enough to get to her before she is truly awake and crying. 90% of the time, I feel like I'm getting pretty good sleep - much better than I was a few months ago when she was either in her crib seperated from us or in our bed. This compromise feels good to us all for now. Good luck!

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I have three little ones and once the hated the crib and wouldn't sleep in it I went out and bought a big kid bed. Not one of the toddler beds but a twin and then got sheets and comforter that they loved. We told them that this bed is for big kids and that they are now a big kid and big kids have there own beds just for them. It worked for our kids.

The first couple of nights I had to put them in bed a couple of times. The first time they got out I told them it was time to go to bed and after that I never said a word just put them back in their bed. My oldest was 13 months when we did it to him, my middle was 11 months and my youngest was almost 13 months when we got hers. Just a thought! Good luck! If you give in once he will always do it until you give in!

Sandra - posted on 05/29/2009




It takes a lot of patience and persistence, but after 4-5 days you can get him to sleep on his own. At 16 mos. my children were in toddler beds. If you aren't able to get one yet, Jeanne's idea is great. Put the mattress on the floor. Let the child walk to his own bed. Make it a routine: let him know it is time to sleep, read, cuddle or whatever you want for this routine. But you've got to do it every night (or most nights at least). I highly recommend using a gate at the door, instead of shutting it. That way they don't feel cut off from the rest of the household, and can see you coming when they call.

Once he is in bed and settled, walk away. You may want to let him know that you have other things to do and he needs to go to sleep. Yes, expect the crying. I have 3 kids; 6, 5, and 4; and have tried different ways to get them to sleep.

Kid #1- put him to bed, when he cried I let him sleep with me and my husband. He was 3 years old when he stayed in his own bed. - I learned my lesson.

Kid #2- put him in his bed. Let him cry for 5 min, then go check on him. I increased his crying time for an additional 5 minutes each time I checked on him; i.e. 5, 10, 15, 20. Eventually, I would let him cry himself to sleep. Note: checking on him every 5, 10, 15 minutes seemed to make it worse.

Kid #3- put her in bed. Let her cry for 5-10 min, then go check on her. Once I knew she was safe and okay, I let her continue to cry herself to sleep. Although I would continue to check on her after 30 minutes of crying. This method seemed to work best for both of us. She learned to put herself to sleep within a 4 days.

Good luck!

Jeanne - posted on 05/26/2009




HI my daughter hated her crib. I would do the same put her to sleep in my arms and then put her in the crib and not to long after that she was awake screaming. It did not work to have her fall asleep in the crib because she would scream. I put the crib mattress on the floor and then gated off her room and she slept great!!. She just didn't like the crib. I would try that just take the mattress out and lay it on the floor. He may feel to confined is why he is having trouble sleeping. Good luck!

Jaime - posted on 05/26/2009




thank you very much for both of your suggestions ! Last night I just gave in and let him sleep in our bed ! but tonight I am going to be firm ! I'll keep you posting on our progress !

Anita - posted on 05/25/2009




At 15mths you'd be amazed at how much your child understands...Your child is in a routine of falling alseep with you there and waking up not having u's a habitual waking that has come from "accidental parenting"...Your child understands that you put him to sleep..carry him off to his crib..he wakes up..your no longer there..and he is somewhere he didnt fall asleep at in the first place...

If you like you like your child to sleep in his crib then in his crb you have to make sure he falls asleep in...You know its shock to wake up and find yourself in bed when the last thing you remember is faling alseep on the couch in the lounge room..well its the same for a lil child...

Its going to take a good few days or nights (it took my little one 2 days two nights at 18mths and he was sleeping in our bed since day one)...

2 rules: routine (u need a bedtime routine starting with a bath...) consistancy and determination (you cant change things on your little thrive on knowing what comes nxt..and u cant cave in when it gets tough)....Try using this method..shh/pat and walk in /walk out method...

Do all your normal bedtime routine..give them a the lights..put music on etc...

Place your child down in the crib facing away from you and hold them firmly on the shoulder and make the shhh sound and with your othr hand settlethem with bum patting..whilst doing so say something like.."its bedtime darling..its ok for yu to go to sleep..mummy is right here with you..shhhh"...just keep patting and shhhing until he settles down and stops crying....

As soon as he stops crying...walk out the room...if your child crys straight away keep walking out of sight...allow about 10seconds b4 you go back in...lay him down without actually or physically pick him up and repeat the above process until eh stops crying..and walk out again....u keep repeating it over and over...

Its very time consuming and its very teedious..the first night is the hardest because it could do it 50times that night...NOTE: it works well if u use this method also for their daytime naps and eventually your child will learn to self soothe and sleep on his own...

Children need to self soothe to sleep and what your doing si giving them a helping hand..also if u find your child wakes in the middle of the night..u have to use the same method....Once you find it working it might go backwards and you find yourself back to square one but keep persisiting and it should all pan out....

hope this helps...good luck

Brandi - posted on 05/25/2009




I'm always amazed how much my 15 month old understands when I talk to him. Have you tried laying out what is going to happen then sticking too it? My son is testing him limits right now and I I tell him what is going to happen then I stick to it, he seems to be fine. Try telling him that it's bed time and he can fall asleep on his own. Might take a couple of nights fo him to get the idea. PS I didn't let my son cry it out either, I would just walk back into his room give him a kiss and tell him it's still bed time, then walk back out of the room...2 min later repeat if crying. I think I did this for an hour the first night.

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