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How can I get my 8 year old son to sleep alone in his own room?

My son has slept with his Dad and I since he was just a few weeks old. After several years of working up to it, he recently started sleeping in his own room, but only if I lay down with him, and stay until he falls asleep. This can sometimes take 2-3 hours, or longer. If I try to make him stay in the room alone, he whines, pouts, begs, and gives me a guilt trip about how I don't love him. I cave in every time, because I just don't have ther heart to look at his little face, with tears in his eyes, and walk away from him. HELP!!!

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Asked by Lala721 at 1:42 AM on Sep. 25, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (7)
  • Ahhh at 8, no offense, but he is manipulating you and you need to be firm. Set up a reward system for times he sleeps alone in his room and set up consequences when he does not. I have coslept with all 3 of my kids and I currently have an 8 yo myself. He is scared of the dark *but* sleeps in his room and has since the age of 5. Last night, we was scared so I let him fall asleep in our room, but then dh took him to his room a couple of hours later. I have a 5 yo also who was hard to get out of our room and I had to because I was PG at the time. She eventually slept on our living room couch for a year (I WAH at night, I am up in the living room which is why she was comfy there) but is now in her room. For my daughter, every night I give her a different stuffed animal and tell her that the animal will give her dreams about this or that. It helps too.

    Answer by upintrees at 6:38 AM on Sep. 25, 2008

  • Sorry, I should say my oldest has been in his own room since the age of 3. My daughter was more difficult. Currently we have our 15 mo cosleeping.

    Answer by upintrees at 6:39 AM on Sep. 25, 2008

  • I think that you should try to make him a dream jar. This worked great with my son. All of my kids were in there own rooms at a young age, I believe even before they were 1 years old, but my middle child had a problem with this.

    We made a dream jar. We decorated it together and then we added happy thoughts and memories to it. Every night before bed we would read one. I also let my kids read before they go to bed and this helps relax them.

    Good Luck

    Answer by cornflakegirl3 at 7:58 AM on Sep. 25, 2008

  • My dd started sleeping consistently in her own room when she was 5. She had started a new summer day camp and was so exhausted by the evening, she went right to sleep in her bed and stayed there. Every now and then she may still come to my room, but it worked.
    Can you just start cutting back on the time you lay down w/him? Tell him that you are only going to lay down x minutes and shorten it every night. Does he like to read or listen to audio books? Maybe you could find some of them at the library.

    Answer by 1xmom68 at 1:13 PM on Sep. 25, 2008

  • I don't have an answer. I just wanted you to know you are not alone. My 8 year old son still sleeps with me. I'm in the process of getting his room painted and what not and hopefully when this is done he will sleep in there by himself, we'll see!! But for now he's with me. He does the same thing your son does when I've tried in the past.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:09 PM on Sep. 25, 2008

  • You need to stand firm on this and don't give in. I know it is hard I went throw this with my boy a year ago. He would cry to but I sat at that door night after night. I would not let him see me cry to but I had to do it I didn't want to cry when he did something new all the time. I started by telling him if his school friend found out he was still sleeping with Mom and Dad they would make fun of him and that we would start out slow he would sleep in his bed Sunday throw thursday and he could sleep with us on the weekends. It didn't take long before he stop sleeping with us on his own. I not shore but I think he could not sleep one night with us because we were both snoring so he just put his self to bed.

    Answer by cloverlady2008 at 4:42 PM on Sep. 25, 2008

  • you need to just be strong and leave him. my daughter slept with me until she was five. even if i got her in her bed, the middle of the night there was a little body in my bed. the nights i gave in was like starting from square one...and was very defeating. what i did about a year ago that helped, was about a year ago i took her to target and we let her completely redecorate her room. now she sleeps in her room through the night and spend more time playing in there instead of trying to be in my room or right behind on my heels.

    Answer by thelifeilead at 10:58 AM on Sep. 26, 2008

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