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Do you lay with your toddler at night time and wait for him/her to fall asleep? I need some answers.

I have a 16 month old who I have to lay with every night or else he'll scream his head off forever, but I'm getting sick of doing this because a lot of time he will be tired, but he tries to stay awake as long as he can and it takes anywhere from 30 minutes to almost an hour before he falls asleep, but if i don't go lay him down, and just let him run around until he falls asleep, he wouldn't go to sleep until like 11. What do you do? Do you just put your toddler in their room, close the door and walk off, or lay with them. If you've managed to get your toddler to fall asleep on their own, how did you do it?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 10:26 PM on Dec. 22, 2009 in Toddlers (1-2)

Answers (20)
  • No, you need to stop it cold turkey. He'll scream for the first couple of night and I know it'll be hard for you to ignore it, but I made the mistake and didn't do it while I could and kept staying with her until she fell asleep until she was 5.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:30 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • You can decide whether or not you want to walk off cold turkey, or ease yourself out of the room by changing from laying next to him to sitting next to him, then sitting further and further off little by little.

    Despite how torturing it feels for you to hear him cry and scream - the truth is, he won't do it forever, and if your consistent and stick with whatever you choose (easing or cold turkey) you'll notice his crying decreasing in time every night. You're his mom, you know when his screams are "I'm in real pain" vs "I'm really mad and annoyed" - respond to the pain, hold yourself back from responding to the annoyed.

    Most important thing I think is just having a solid bed-time routine. You start an hour to 30 minutes before bed, doing clean up toys, bath, tooth brush, pajamas, read a story, sing a song, whatever - it doesn't really matter so long as it's consistent....toddlers thrive on routine.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:40 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • I've seen a similar situation on super nanny. what she has the mom do is sit on the floor of the child's room, head down. if the child gets up then mom puts him/her back into bed. saying its bedtime the first time but after that NO eye contact and NO talking. just straight putting the child back in bed and it seems to work.

    Answer by created4apurpos at 10:41 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • The more you encourage this behaviour, the longer it will go on. A child will hold onto this as long as you'll allow them to, because it is comforting to them. However, it will soon become a dependence and you'll never be able to get rid of it. You need to end the behaviour now before it gets worse. Try these steps..
    1. Try to keep him active throughout the day. This will help use up all that energy before bedtime.
    2. Start a nighttime routine if you haven't already. A. Dinner B. Bath C. Nighttime story on the couch, or in his room in a comfy chair. D. Tuck him into bed and say your "goodnights".
    For this last step you can do one of two things. You can sit just inside his door with the light off. Putting him back in bed everytime he gets out. Only the first time saying "It is time for bed, so please lay down." Or whatever comforting words you have for him .. contin.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 10:43 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • (Contin.) Or you can walk out of the room and .. If he screams it out, let him. It's not hurting him. He's trying to push your buttons so that you'll come in a cuddle him. It isn't going to scar him, it isn't going to damage him in any way. It's only his way of getting you to come in and give him what he wants. It isn't what he needs though, so don't give in. Be consistant, follow through, and stand your ground. If you choose to sit just inside his door until he falls asleep only do it for the first night. If you continue to do it then you're only creating a bigger problem. Doing it the first night you're creating a distance between you and what he wants. By not doing it the second night you're showing that you're taking that distance one step further. He'll understand eventually and he'll be okay with it. Just be strong. It's better for you both to do it now.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 10:46 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • yes and my dd is almost 3. i usually fall asleep with her. sometimes i try to mkake her go to be alone but it takes 3 hrs for her to fall asleep and it willbe like 12 or 1 am and she still awake if i put her to bed it takes and hr and i justw nat to get to bed. some nights she just comes to my room

    Answer by piwife at 10:48 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • I dont sleep with my kid. he would never sleep if i coddled the desire. I put him to bed. sometimes he cries. sometimes he screams. most of the time he falls asleep. he is less then a month away from two now and i've had him in a crib for about a year. since he has been in his own bed he has slept alone. I used to want to cuddle for naps but he is to wiggly and does whatever possible to stay awake. if he does fall asleep i wake up USUALLY with a foot in my eye.

    Cold turkey works. the child will freak but let them know that you love them. kisses hugs lay them down or at least try. cover them up. they WIll fall asleep.

    I have a relative that sleeps with her kid. she is an Idiot and that child is horrible to put to bed. if u think it';s hard now? the girl's kid is two and he SCREAMS and yells if she ever tries to put him to bed on his own. opens the door to the room. runs out and continues to spaz for hours. set a bed time. sti

    Answer by MoMoFu at 10:59 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • stick to ur bed time. make a schedule for naps eating etc if u feel like and things will go like clock work for you pretty quick.

    Answer by MoMoFu at 11:00 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • In my house, when it's bedtime, it's bedtime! And I would NEVER let my son scream his head off for any reason and I would also never fall asleep with him. He sometimes doesn't fall asleep right away but eventually he will, your son will do the same if you stop giving in to his awful behavior. Do you want your child to grow up needy??? Sounds like you started a bad habit and you need to break it. Why would your child need so much attention just to fall asleep, seems a little ridiculous to me!

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:03 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

  • To that last anonymous answer - She is talking about a 16 month old, not a ten year old! 16 mos is still a baby! Babies need comfort, not a drill sergeant! I agree that laying with them till they fall asleep can start a bad habit, but it isn't "awful behavior" to want some comfort as a baby falls asleep.

    Answer by Iskkra at 11:32 PM on Dec. 22, 2009

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