Ds ( a twin) 3 yrs has developed habit of refusing to go to bed ! Every night he gets out of bed and basically runs riot upstairs keeping his brother awake. Lots of strategies tried, firm routine, story to settle, ignoring him ( disaster ) . He will settle but usually after about 2 hours. Then wakes usually around 2am, and wants to sleep with us. As he is scared of monsters.
We have tried continuously putting him back, which doesn't work and ignoring him ( he slept on the floor outside our room , how guilty did I feel when I found him in the morning) . Baby gate has been abandoned as he now can open it! His brother is fine, settles and sleeps through, as did ds, until clocks went back!
They are all different (as is what we are prepared to put up with as parents), but with my DS I find that: - if I stay upstairs (sitting on my bed, reading my iPad or whatever) then he will stay in his room and behave. Basically I tell him that if he doesn't stay in his room (and behave), then I will go downstairs. That seems to work for us (and I am happy reading in my room for 30 minutes). - DS has been coming into our bed since we took the stairgate off of his doorway (before Christmas). We haven't tackled it as it hasn't really been a problem. There was a period when he was coming into us rather early (between about 12 and 2am), BUT he has grown out of that and it is generally between 6 and 7 am now. He just gets into bed and goes back to sleep and rarely a problem (although this morning there seemed to be a lot of feet and elbows flying...). I sort of think that if you leave it (if you can) then he will grow out of it. If you make an issue of it, then it will become a game and he won't feel welcome if he has a real problem/nightmare. I want him to know that he is always welcome.
If he's really just scared of monsters, have you tried a 'monster spray'?? it's a plant spray with water in and some rather snazzy stickers on the side? he might fall for it? and you can leave it in his room to spray when he wakes up. You could even put some nice lavender oil in it to make him relaxed???