My mother bought DD a new toddler bed after I expressly told her our plan was to transition DD to the full-size futon we already have in her room. For some reason, my mom got it into her mind that the futon was a bad idea, and what we really needed was a new toddler bed AND a new crib mattress to put in it. Sigh. So now we have a wooden-framed toddler bed in her room. It's a nice enough piece of furniture, but a waste of money, IMO. She would have been perfectly happy on the futon. We'll probably move her to that at some point anyway, when her baby brother is ready to transition out of his crib into the toddler bed.
The OP asked about character beds -- she would have adored a character or a race car or something, I'm sure, but I hate them. They're expensive, often poor quality, often molded out of plastic, and almost always painted in eye-poppingly bright colors. Something in me just will not let me put bright colors in a place that is supposed to be restful, KWIM?
Pros of the toddler bed:
- if she falls out of bed, she doesn't get hurt
- it's "just her size" so she loves it and likes to sleep in it (no trouble transitioning from mostly cosleeping to mostly sleeping in the bed, in other words)
- you can get a bit more use out of your crib mattress and sheets before moving to something else
- she can get out of bed and come find me, rather than screaming from her room (though she usually lays there and calls for me at night anyway, so don't count on this as a benefit of a toddler bed)
- she doesn't feel trapped or confined as she did in the crib, but she has the security of little side rails to help her feel a bit more safe and enclosed
- safer than a crib, since she was learning to climb out of the crib!!!
- it says it's good for up to 50 pounds, so she's got a few years in it before she needs a bigger bed (she'll need to cede it to the baby before she grows out of it, probably)
- even though it says 50 pounds, it holds about 160 pounds for a while every night, since I still have to lay in bed with her and nurse her to sleep at night. It seems to be holding up OK, though I still hold my breath every time I lay down on the thing.
Cons of the toddler bed:
Originally Posted by WeasleyMum
...if your son is used to co-sleeping, then you or your partner will be spending a considerable amount of time in whatever bed you choose during the transition period. I speak from experience-- you don't want to be all cramped up in a toddler-sized bed! It might be okay for someone switching directly from crib-to-bed, but I've seriously spent too much time in this little IKEA bed. Sometimes I accidentally fall asleep while I'm getting him down and wake up with my legs all cramped.
It is terrifically uncomfortable to lay with her in the bed. I would NOT have chosen this particular piece of furniture for that reason alone.
Originally Posted by pattyford
Is your LO walking? My 14 month old son is on the verge of walking and I wonder if I should wait for that milestone before switching. What are some other reasons to make the switch?
I would not put a non-walking LO in a toddler bed, unless you had some pressing reason to do so. There's no rush!