How can I transition my toddler out of my bed? Sleep

iStock.com/Vesna Andjic


iStock.com/Vesna Andjic

Whether you've been co-sleeping for years or your little one just started climbing into your bed, you'll find tips for helping your toddler start snoozing in her own space.

Stay With Her for a Bit

"Tell your child that you're going to be in her room with her and help her learn to be in her own bed. Leave the light on if she prefers, and let her keep a special doll or stuffed animal with her. Try to keep her bedtime routine consistent. If she wakes up in the middle of the night and comes to you, bring her back to bed and stay with her initially again." -- Alison Mitzner, MD, pediatrician, New York, NY

Get Your Partner on Board

"You and your partner must both be 100 percent committed to the change, because it will likely be a battle that will take several weeks. Tell your toddler that the transition is coming, and make it a special occasion by buying new sheets or a new stuffed animal for the bed. Sleep in their room all night for the first few nights -- do not sneak out without warning your child; there should be no surprises during this process. Then decrease the amount of time in their room in small increments...

"You and your partner must both be 100 percent committed to the change, because it will likely be a battle that will take several weeks. Tell your toddler that the transition is coming, and make it a special occasion by buying new sheets or a new stuffed animal for the bed. Sleep in their room all night for the first few nights -- do not sneak out without warning your child; there should be no surprises during this process. Then decrease the amount of time in their room in small increments (i.e., until they fall asleep, then before they fall asleep), making sure to prepare them in advance for each change." -- Amelia Bailey, MD, OB/GYN, Reverie sleep research expert, Memphis, TN

Be Consistent

"Keep putting her back in bed if she sneaks out. She will get the hint that the same thing is going to happen every time. You may lose a good amount of sleep, but giving in to her will be worse."

Consider Letting Them Stay

"I figure my kids won't be sleeping with me when they graduate high school, so I'll just let them come in when they want to. After all, they won't be little forever, and there will come a day when I'll miss this time!"

Transition Slowly

"I would lay my daughter in her big girl bed and sit next to it on the floor until she fell asleep. Then, as the week went on, I slowly moved closer and closer to the door. After about a week of that, she did pretty well on her own."

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