Crib Escapee

Holly - posted on 09/15/2009 ( 10 moms have responded )

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My son (will be 2 in Dec) has learned to escape from his crib. He does all that he can to stall going to sleep- asking for drinks of water, door open, door closed, sleep in mama's bed, etc. When I ignore him he gets mad and now climbs out. I need advice on how to get him to sleep quicker and how to keep him in his crib. And what do I do when he does get out? My husband works second shift so I'm by myself every night...

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Jennifer - posted on 09/17/2009

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I started using rules - rule #1 was 'stay on the bed no matter what'. And there were other rules. She ended up liking the rules. Of course, when potty training, we indicated that she could go at most two times.

[deleted account]

We had a crib jumper early on and that was when we lived in a townhome with lots of stairs. We did use the tent (mentioned above) and it was wonderful because we didn't worry about him. The tent really gave us peace - we could sleep through the night, not worrying that our son was escaping! He actually liked the tent. Now that he is older and in his own bed, however, we seriously baby-proofed the room (sockets, dresser, etc.) and we're no longer in a multiple-level home so that helps. Good luck!

Sharon - posted on 09/17/2009

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I would say you son is probably ready to be in a bed. My kids were less than two when we moved from the cribs. If you want, you can start with a toddler bed which is lower to the ground if you are worried about him falling out at night. If he climbs out of the crib anyway, he could just as easily fall when climbing out too. Let him help picking out the new bedding, etc and maybe that will help keep him interested in staying in his new big boy bed.

Shelsea - posted on 09/17/2009

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sounds like he is time for a big boy bed. my son has been in his sincee he was a little over a year. when he is having a rough night i sometimes put on one of his movies and put it really low so he cant really hear it. i would rub his belly/feet/hair and sing him something and eventually he crashes out but it will take a while to get him used to it. good luck

Jill - posted on 09/16/2009

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My daughter crawled out at 15 months. I put her in a regular bed the next night with it up against the wall and a bed rail on the other side. She has been sleeping in it ever since!! I would say he's ready for a big boy bed now.

Traci - posted on 09/16/2009

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I agree with others that it's probably time to move out of the crib. Either a toddler bed, the mattress on the floor, or a regular twin bed. If he knows how to escape from his crib, he could be a danger to himself if he falls. It will be an adjustment. My older son always came out of his room when we transitioned him to his big boy bed. Like another mom said, we just kept marching him right back into bed. No emotion, no reaction, just simply said, "time for bed" and put him back in. I can even remember camping outside his door at bedtime and everytime he opened it and saw me there, he turned around and put himself back to bed because he knew what was coming. It's hard work at first but if you stick with it, it will pay off in the long run.

As for needing water, etc, my older son still does that (at almost 5). We give him warnings. We say "10 minutes to bedtime" and we tell him that if he needs water, stuffed animal, whatever, that he needs to take care of it now. Of course, you son is younger and will need more help with those things, like getting water, but if you know his common needs before bedtime, start with the 10 minute warning and just tell him something like "we're going to get water now since we're going to bed in 10 minutes". It will hopefully set the stage for him that he has to do those things BEFORE bedtime, not AT bedtime.

Good luck.

Dannielle - posted on 09/16/2009

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Once they can climb out it's best to make the transition to a toddler bed. It's going to take patience to get him to develop a habit of staying and going to sleep in his "big boy bed", and you may in the beginning have to stay with him til he falls asleep. There may be many nights of walking him back to bed, but as you say, he's already doing that now, and at least with the toddler bed you don't have the added worry of him getting hurt while he attempts his escape. Good Luck Holly! :)

Lola - posted on 09/15/2009

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Maybe its time for the big boy bed! Good luck with that my kidos are older now but that whole i want water i need to go to the bathroom still goes on in our house...lol though i feel you on the crib thing my daughter was an escape artist with the car seat. I even got a ticket once from a statetrooper who saw her getting out of her car seat...i was so mad.

Cristina - posted on 09/15/2009

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I survived the same problem!

I did not have my son in the crib anymore, so I have a couple of ideas.

First, look online for the "crib tent." There are at least 2 versions. It's a mesh that goes over the top of the crib using flexible tent poles. It's supposed to be strong enough to hold the weight of a cat above, and keep climbers from climbing out.

If you decide to get him out of the crib (I just put his crib mattress on the floor, buffered the edges with body pillows, and wrapped a twin-sized bottom sheet around the whole), he will keep getting out of bed, but safely. Under these circumstances, every time he gets up, take a deeeeep breath, walk quietly without groans, words, sighs, and just put him gently back in bed. Eventually he will get bored of the system, and go to sleep. It may take 3 hours the first few nights, but then it gets better (i promise). You may not want to leave any toys in his room, since he might just get up to play (mine always wanted to be with me). You might also have to turn off lights early, turn off the TV (or use headphones and close the door)...

The problem is, the more you react, the more you talk to him, the more attention he gets, the more he will get up.

(I don't take credit for this, I watched Supernanny for several months after my son was born...full of good ideas!)

[deleted account]

Maybe he is ready for a toddler bed already. I bought one for my son at 2 years. He loves it, and thinks he's a big boy now. He still tries to walk in my room as well to climb in bed. I just walk him right back into his room. I may rub his back a little to get him to sleep or give him a toy to entertain himself until he falls asleep. Good Luck

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