Tips to get your baby from your bed to theirs – easy to follow tips, suggestions and ideas.
Make a personalized plan
There are different strategies to adjust baby’s sleep habits and it starts at bedtime. How you put baby down each night depends on his personality and what you feel comfortable doing. Some babies do better with a parent sitting next to the cot, and others do better without company. If you decide to stay in your baby’s room at bedtime, try to leave the room when your baby is dozing off but not yet asleep. Each night, move the chair further away from the cot, toward the bedroom door.
Support baby to fall asleep on her own
Ok this is the tough part. Most babies wake during the night, but in order to go to back sleep without intervention (which might include a trip to your bedroom and/or your bed, followed by lots of cuddling), they need to practice falling back asleep on their own. Many parents have success going to baby in the middle of the night and reassuring her, without picking her up or bringing her to bed with them.
Work with your partner
Make no mistake — this will be a family project. Ensure you’re on the same page with your partner before you get started. When is a good time/date to start? Who’s going to get up each time baby wakes? What are you going to do to help him fall back asleep? Will you let baby protest a bit before picking him up? How long for?
Expect resistance, but be consistent
Once you’ve agreed on your strategy, start implementing it — and stick with it. It’s very likely baby will resist (trust us, he will). It’s normal to expect a protest the first few nights as changes are introduced. We always advocate responding to your baby. We do not support controlled crying or allowing baby to become distressed. Cuing into cries and understanding what is a grizzle while I settle and what is a cry that needs comfort and reassurance is the key. Stay committed and responsive and remember calm and consistency is the key.
Co-sleeping isn’t forever. As with any behaviour modification, sleep and settling independently takes practice before it becomes a habit, but it will happen. The entire process typically takes anywhere from a few nights to a few weeks, depending on you and your child. In the meantime be extra-patient with baby and remember: You will sleep again.