Hoping someone has some hints for us! Our 14 month old is a pretty good sleeper, occasionally get one or two night wakes which just need dummy popped in but not often, but he still won't go to sleep on his own. We have a pretty good bedtime routine, bath, lotion, bottle and then we sit in the rocking chair with him until he drifts off. Sometimes it's very quick, but about half the time he's 95% asleep (very relaxed, eyes drooping) and then will force himself awake and start squirming and wanting to stand up on our laps etc. These times it takes between 30 mins and an hour to get him to sleep (even though he's tired). If we try to put him in the cot awake, even when he's ready to drop off, he pops up and starts standing up and playing, banging his head, throwing his toys etc. and when he's finally ready to go to sleep he generally still needs us to pick him for the final few seconds.
I don't mind rocking him to sleep in the slightest - the only reason not to rock a baby to sleep is so they can fall back to sleep without you at night but he's generally fine during the night. But I would like to not spend an hour and a half on bedtime routine and getting him to sleep! Ideally we'd like to be able to put him down awake, I don't mind if he stays awake talking to himself for another half an hour but he doesn't then go to sleep on his own after that, he cries for us.
(P.S. I don't like CIO techniques, each to their own but please don't suggest them as they're not right for us :-) )
Have you tried sitting in his room and shushing him when he cries? If he stands up then leave him until he is unhappy or crying then lay him down and shush him until he stops crying, or you could pat him or stroke him. Anything that will comfort him until he drops off. Don't pick him up, so his last waking memory is the cot and laying on his mattress, not your arms. Once he is used to falling asleep in his cot with your help you can work on decreasing the amount you help him. This could take a few weeks but he may surprise you and do it in days!