So we've been co-sleeping since the beginning, and its been going great. My 12 month old dd has always been an so-so sleeper and getting her to actually fall asleep has been the hardest part. Now she has figured how to get out of bed on her own so when she doesn't want to sleep, she just leaves. Off the bed and out of the room to see what daddy is up to. I'm sure I'm not the first person who has dealt with this. What should I do? Our days are pretty unstructured as far as naps and bed times go and our bedtime routine is to wait until she is tired, change her diaper, put her in jammies and nurse her down. Any suggestions would be super helpful!
Is she getting up when you're trying to get her to sleep or is she waking up later and getting up? If it is the former, we do a few things
- all lie down together. No need to get out of bed to see Daddy if Daddy is right next to you. We found this helped a lot. He is a shift worker so he isn't there every night but he is for most.
- close the bedroom door. Self-explanatory really. She will sometimes ask to be let out and we just say "No Sweetheart, it's bedtime now. We're staying here and going to bed." She is allowed to roam around the room if she wants too but DH and I stay on the bed and read our books. We don't ignore her, we acknowledge her if she speaks to us or gives us something (she likes to bring us shoes) but we don't initiate long chats or games.
- bring her back to bed. If the tiredness starts to get to her I will get up and bring her back to bed, lay her down with me and start her feeding again.
- something rhythmic. Sometimes DH will pat her leg/bottom as she feeds or draw circles on her palm (like you're playing "round and round the garden..."). She seems to find this almost hypnotic and it sometimes helps her settle.
That's all I've got. Hope you can get her to settle soon.
Mother of two spectacular girls, born mid-2010 and late 2012
She is getting out of bed while we are in the process of going to sleep. Your first two suggestions are things I hadn't thought of (I can't believe closing the door didn't occur to me...) I like the idea of having daddy in there with us. After struggling all day yesterday to get her to sleep, DH bounced her for literally 5 minutes and she was out. And it will be nice to have DH around too, just for some more family time. Your suggestions are all good ones! Thanks!!!!