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what am i doing wrong?? He wont sleep in his crib!

My 13 mo son will not sleep in his crib!! I am at a loss. I tried bedtime routines, laying him down when he is sleepy, laying him down asleep. everything i can think of... I had been totally opposed to letting him Cry it out, but tried it the other night, and he can climb right out of his crib. but he could kill himself if he climbs out and falls over the railing. He screamed for an hour and tried climbing out. i stood there and as soon as he started to climb I said "no" and laid him down... after an hour he was absolutly beside himself and I couln't keep it up. I really don't know what to do, He also will smash his head into the raling, and he just doesn't give up. Any advice?? What am i doing wrong??

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Asked by Anonymous at 1:33 PM on Jun. 19, 2009 in Toddlers (1-2)

Answers (8)
  • Persistance, Persistance, Persistance. Getting my children to sleep in their own beds was a problem I always had too. Some nights I was so exhausted that when they woke up, I would just bring them in bed with me. I know that's not the best move for several reasons, but I did it. After that it was a fight every night to get them to bed. I too had a hard time letting him cry it out. My youngest son would make himself throw up after a while if he didn't get his way. Although it took up a lot of my evening, I got to where I would lay him in bed and I would lay on the floor until he fell asleep. Sometimes I would lay with my feet up touching his crib, so he could put his feet against mine and eventually he would fall asleep. After a while the amount of time I spent in there got less and less.

    Answer by at 1:48 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • First of all, you aren't necessarily doing anything wrong! You don't mention if this is a recent problem and where he'd been sleeping previously. We had a similar problem with our son. I took to sittting in his room until he fell asleep. I didn't interact with him at all, just sat there (I bought a book light so I could read to kill time.) Each night we put him down and tried to get out. If he screamed, we gave him a couple of minutes, then went back in to sit. If you're boring enough, he'll just go to sleep. However, you also have a different problem with the fact that he can get out of his crib. Typically that's the sign to move him to a bed but since he's so young, you might try a crib tent. It won't work on cribs with uneven sides (i.e convertible cribs that become beds).

    lastly, try reading The No Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley. Might help.

    Answer by momofryan07 at 1:57 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • It would seem that he's trying to communicate to you that he needs something more than being left alone. Trying getting him a toddler bed and having him sleep in your room on his own bed. Try to find out WHAT will settle him down - being in close contact with you? Then give him what he needs, even if it means sacrificing some of your own comfort. Letting him cry that long is essentially telling him that HIS needs don't matter, so please don't let him CIO like that. Give him what he needs - he's young enough to need that sense of security still.

    Answer by JPsMommy605 at 1:57 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • maybe try what super nanny does and lay him down and tell him time for bed in a soft voice 3 times, if he still gets up then keep the lights off and keep laying him down without saying a word and sit in a corner of his room till he gets the idea. It seemed to work for the parents that had similar problems on that show. GL

    Answer by Apr1l at 1:57 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • My son is the same way. He will not fall asleep in his crib at all. I let him fall asleep with me in the living room and wait for a like a half an hour and put him in his crib. Or I lay him down in his play pen with a bottle and he will fall asleep in there. HE likes to take his naps in there. Again I will wait till I know he is asleep and put him in his crib. This is what works best for me.

    You are not doing anything wrong. He just wants to be with you.

    Answer by myangel21 at 2:03 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • it may be time for a toddler bed, even though your son is first. i got a bedtime training light that i would recommend to anyone! it's called: good nite lite (, and it helps train kids to know when it's time to go to bed and when it's time to wake up. you set the time for bed, and the light becomes a moon. when you set the wake up time, it becomes a sun. works really well (after a week or so), and may be what your son needs to help stay in the crib, or a bed.

    Answer by kesrn at 3:36 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • OH mommmy... Hugs to you- I KNOW its hard. MY son had sleeping "issues" since birth and it was so frustrating and tiring. I read a book Healthy sleep habits, happy child - it gives you many suggestions and you can skip right to certain area's of concern so you dont' have to read the whole book to start it - after trying numerous methods I HAD to do the crying it out but it teaches you ways to do that too - it doesn't have to be cold turkey and my son has cried up to 2-1/2 hours before at once time. but he can't get out of his crib so I understand your concern but I recommend this book

    Answer by maxsmom11807 at 4:07 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

  • My daughter was around 16 months when I finally gave up trying to get her to sleep in her bed, she had NEVER been a good sleeper up to that point. I know the reason she didn't like the bed was that she moves around in her sleep a lot and she was tired of smacking herself on the railing in the middle of the night. Her bed was one that converted to a toddler bed, but even then the mattress was too small for her sleeping needs. Fortunately, we had a futon with a spring mattress, so it's a pretty comfortable place to sleep. I laid down with her to get her to sleep and did that for several months, a lot of nights I'd just sleep with her the whole night when she was going through periods of having nightmares and whatnot. Now I lay with her for a few minutes and she's usually out for the night. I was nervous at first that maybe that wasn't the best approach, but I was too sleep deprived to care and it all worked out fine:)

    Answer by Elsasmom at 4:48 PM on Jun. 19, 2009

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