Hope that people can offer some helpful advice to me here.
Our 22 month old has always disliked going to sleep and we established a great routine...bath, PJs, (? milk-doesn't always have), teeth, 1 story on the floor in his room, then get into his cot and have another story and that was it - often calls out afterwards to check I've not abandoned him and I just reply that I'm there. Of course like any child, he has his nights where he's more reluctant to go to sleep and might cry for 2-3 minutes and then settle. When he gets up in the morning he is desperate to get out of the cotbed - hates being enclosed - always has done be it the buggy, car seat or cot. Likes his freedom!
So all was fine and I felt like I'd really cracked the whole sleep thing until we went on holiday for a few days to a hotel with a rather small cot compared to his cotbed at home that he's used to. He really found it hard to settle, and I just allowed things - he was away from home, strange room, slightly out of routine etc. A couple of nights I put him on our bed to fall asleep and then transferred him, a couple of nights we ended up going for a walk with the buggy and letting him fall asleep and transfer him. He really was screaming the place down if we put him in his cot for the night initially.
So now we've come home, he's begging for 'bed bed' each night. He really wants to sleep in a bed and dislikes his cot massively. To make matters worse, his room does have a spare bed in - eek!! Not sure how it came about but I think it was after we read a story on the floor of his room he lay down with teddy and asked for a pillow. He then went to sleep beautifully (I did of course threaten that if he came out the room he'd be back in his cot instantly). Each night has been a struggle and we have ended up in the same scenario where he will settle happily on the floor of his room and be asleep in a matter of minutes vs the nights where I have persisted with the cot and had a hysterical child with a snotty face, dripping wet pyjamas from all the crying. There was one night where he accepted a bribe and lay down beautifully in his cot and I gave him his treat the next morning but he now seems uninterested in the bribery!
What do I do? Is it time to give in and take the side off his cot bed? Do I persist with bribes for a few nights and have a few difficult nights and then he'll re-settle. Open to any tips and advice. Thanks in advance and sorry for lengthy post!
Take the side off his cot. DS was in a proper bed (ordinary single) at 19 months; DD is 22 months and has been in a toddler bed (due to space more than anything) for 3 or 4 months. Both slept much better in beds than cots.