Any tips as to how to put my baby and toddler to sleep in the same room? My son is almost 3 yrs old, my daughter is 6 months. She goes to sleep at around 7 pm, but he doesn't go down until 8. How do I put him to sleep without waking her up? He's not exactly a quiet kid. And should I worry about him causing her harm? He's overly affectionate with her and can climb in there...I'd love to hear your experiences and any advice! Thanks!
My kids were 4 and 1 when we had them move in together, and our then 7-year old as well.
The way we handle the different bedtime is that we get all three kids into their PJs and brushed teeth together. One of us puts the little one down. We read stories in her room, rock/sing her babydoll to sleep, and then tuck her in and stay with her till she's asleep, usually around 7:20. The other parent puts the middle one down into our bed. They actually have about the same bedtime since he doesn't nap. The older one usually reads quietly during this time, downstairs. We then hang with the older one, read a story, and quietly tuck her into her bed, at which point we transfer the middle one to his bed. We do have a strict "no talking if someone's sleeping" rule that we practice sometimes during the day, which seems to help.
As far as hurting the baby, I think that's really hard to judge for someone who doesn't know your children. For us, the baby gets pretty loud when she doesn't like something, though she was older. We did have a video monitor though rarely used it by that point (it was more for rest time for the middle one when he was a bit younger). Our regular monitor seemed to work. Then again, the middle one never climbed into her crib - I'm not sure if he knew that he could! I wonder what would help your son to really understand that staying out of the crib is non-negotiable, just like running out into the street is non-negotiable. Practicing things tends to help our family. Maybe have the baby (or a doll) in the crib and show your son how to be affectionate without climbing in?
Good luck! I think generally parents (me included!) stress out more about the sharing a bedroom thing than we needed to. On the other hand, I do also think it's part of doing due diligence so that's important. I'm sure you will find a way to make it work for your family!
Married to DH since 2006. Adoptive mom to DD1 (June 2002), DS (Jan 2006), and bio mom to DD2 (May 2009).