Moving from cot bed to a ‘big bed’ can be quite daunting for a little one. I hope Alice will take to it well and expect she’ll probably start to spend most of the night getting up and playing with her toys – that’s what I’d do! For a lot of children it can be a little bit scary; all that open space. Let’s be honest though, it’s us, (the parents) who are worried about removing the cot rails; what if they fall out of bed? Thinking about it realistically we know that there aren’t many adults out there who still suffer with sleepless night because they constantly roll, fall, or crash out of bed. Fears of your little one rolling out of bed can easily be solved with something cheap and simple like a bed rail.
The unknown is something that most people feel a little uncomfortable with, but when you’ve only been exploring the planet for 18 months, obviously the amount of ‘unknown’ is significantly greater and, equally, scarier. There is no way to completely remove these fears and anxieties, but you can take little steps to make the unknown a little more familiar.
If the cot is in the left-hand corner of the room then that’s where the bed should be. If your little one has a favourite blanket, or one you always put in their cot, then that should be in the bed too. Try and attach any cot toys or teddies to the headboard. You could buy that cheap glow in the dark stars and planets and put them on the ceiling or wall near the cot; and then as they move to their new bed they will still have the gentle glow of stars around them. All these things may help to make the change to a bed a little more familiar. There are loads of ideas and recommendations out there, the key is finding one (or a few) that you like and you think will actually help your little one.
What if they keep getting out of bed and waking me up, or sneaking into my bed? It is quite likely that your little one may take their new freedom and, well enjoy it. If you are worried about them walking around at night a safety gate is ideal. There are three key places to put a safety gate when trying to sort out a wandering issue.
1. Put the safety gat in their doorway – they will be safe and secure in their room and won’t be able to sneak under your covers!
2. Put the safety gate at the top of the stairs – stairs are a big worry and putting a safety gate there is an obviously good idea.
3. Put the safety gate in your doorway – knowing that your little one can walk to your door and see you are there may be enough comfort for them to return to bed and get some sleep.
Obviously you can use two, or all, of the ideas for a super safe bedtime. It is all about what you (the person who knows your child’s needs best) feel comfortable with.
Bambino Direct has a large range of products for your nursery and to help you through every stage of your little one’s development.
Going back to the cot.
There is the possibility that you may have to return to the cot if things really don’t work out. If you decide to do this, make the transition back to cot a fun and exciting step. Maybe spend time with your little one decorating some bunting or posters for around the cot? You don’t want them to see the move back to a cot as a failing on their part and you don’t want them to feel like they aren’t “grown-up enough.” As well as ensuring that you child is happy and doesn’t feel bad about returning to their cot, you need to make sure that you don’t feel bad either. You did everything you could and it just wasn’t time yet; you didn’t fail at moving them into a bed. Imagine buying a new phone, but not liking it or not feeling you need the technology it offers yet; you simply swap back to your old phone until you fancy using the new on – that’s all that’s happening for your little one!