Almost 3 yo refuses to stay in bed.. HELP!

Ashley - posted on 01/27/2011 ( 2 moms have responded )




My son will be 3 in April. He has been in a toddler bed since he was 18 months (when I couldn't get him to stay in his crib anymore). For the last 9 months (off and on) and for the last 4 months constantly, we have had issues getting him to bed at night. Every night is a 2-4 hour struggle to get him to stay in bed. We have tried locking his door, setting up a good routine, music, movies, absolute quiet, rewards, storytime... literally everything. His bedtime is 8pm, he has the normal routine of bath time, a little bit to drink, brushing his teeth, bedtime story, goodnights and all of that. We have tried baby gates, but he has been climbing those for over a year. He mastered door knob covers and all of that months ago. It's to the point where he is getting up in the middle of the night and getting into the fridge, the cabinets, and a lot of things he shouldn't be getting into. Mind you, he is VERY active. He doesn't stop from the minute he wakes up in the morning until the minute he finally falls asleep at night. He is very stubborn and bullheaded, and VERY independent. Any advice on how to keep my wild Tater in his bed at night??


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Krissy - posted on 01/28/2011




Is it possible that he's just not tired enough yet? Maybe bump the bedtime a bit (not a lot.... but just by another half hour) and make sure he's up early. Also, cut out sugar snacks and any drink (except water after a certain time)... but do try a small healthy snack with grain and protein... stick with the routine otherwise, and don't be flexible about letting him get out and climb in with you, even when you are too tired to mess with it. Oh, and if he still naps during the day... make them much shorter. Have a long wind-down period, and be sure there's no TV 2 hours before bed... some kids get mentally wound up because of TV....

Otherwise, just be consistent.. Reward and praise when he's successful, just like with anything else, and go ahead and discipline fairly when he doesn't.

Kristina - posted on 01/28/2011




When my 2 1/2 yr old boy jumps from bed at bedtime, I take his favorite stuffed animals ans sit next to them and start reading a story to them, ignoring my son's behavior. He eventually joins for the story. Of course, when the story is over, he may jump out again in which case I give hugs and kisses and tuck in all his toys. This draws him back to the action going on at bedtime, and all of a sudden he wants to be a part of it and have his kitty give him a kiss good night and give his puppy a kiss, etc. Sometimes, my presence is not enough, and he needs my husband to come in and sit with him, too. I hope this helps at least slow the pace of your little one toward sleep! It sounds like you are doing everything any pediatrician and experienced mom would suggest! Keep it up and never give up!

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