Tips for Moving from Cot to Bed

We were getting a bit desperate. The gremlin was just refusing to sleep in her own cot at night without a monumental meltdown and potential vomming. I’d been told it was a phase and I needed to toughen up but our whole evenings were getting wrecked and the gremlin was knackered.
So drastic measures we needed. After some discussion and advice we decided…the cot sides were coming off and she was going into her big girl bed.
I was crapping myself to be honest. I was giving my girl actual freedom. She could get out of bed, mess around, come in to our room early. Whatever. It felt BIG.

But we decided to go with it. After our weekend away we set to work rearranging her room and transforming the cot into a bed. We decided to show her and explain and she was fascinated. She came up and down the stairs and wanted to see her bed. So in this respect we were quietly confident.

The reality? As usual a lot flipping harder than ever expected from her initial reaction but nothing as bad as I thought. This is what I have learnt about the move to the big girl bed:

  • You have to build it up a bit. Wow, wow, WOW it’s a new bed! You are such a BIG girl. This kind of talk is a bit barf but did the trick. There are books you can buy if you are planning ahead, unlike us who just did it!
  • You definitely need a bed guard. The positions the gremlin can get herself into down the crack between the bed and bed guard would impress a contortionist.
  • Prepare to go up and down the stairs A LOT the first few nights, The gremlin did get up and hover by the top of the stairs. I followed the advice of my Super Aunt (of course she did not ask me to call her that!) and was quite firm and put her back each time and left her, without much talk.
  • You may find this coincides with the phase of them wanting you in the room to sleep. We have had to lie on the floor for a while, pretending to be asleep or had to stroke her back whilst the gremlin relaxes. This is getting less but can take a bit more time than normal.
  • You will eat later and have less evening by the time they stop farting around and have gone to sleep. We found this hard but it is getting better now.
  • The range of excuses they will find not to go to bed will multiply x 100. There’s a bee in my room. I’ve done a poo. I don’t want to wear my nightie. I want to look out the window. I need another story. More milk. Rub my back….need I continue?
  • Like anything with children routine and consistency are key. I was a Mum who tried to get my girlie to self settle early on (with very limited upset to be honest) but it took a good week for her to be immediately content when I put her down awake. It’s the same thing with a new bed. Do the same thing, say the same things every night and it sticks.
  • It’s kind of really nice and kind of really fricking annoying when they come into your room early in the morning. You are in a deep sleep and some miniature starts tugging at the blanket. It’s quite cute when you wake to see them hovering though and coming in for a 30 second cuddle (that may be just my gremlin).
 All in all the whole thing has not been that bad. Our ultimate goal was to get her to sleep in her own room again and we achieved this on Day 1. She still asks to sleep in our bed but goes to her own with no trouble. As the nights went on her bedtime has gone from 8.30 to 7.30pm. She tries and tries to stay up but hubby takes over at the end and calmly puts her back over and over and she gives in.

As a process, it was nothing like I expected!! Next comes potty training……