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Normally good at going to bed but keeps coming out of bedroom

(5 Posts)
Biscuitsandtea Mon 29-Aug-11 16:42:02

Hi,

I was wondering if anyone was able to help me. Generally my DS is a good sleeper and always has been. He's 2.11 now and has been in a bed for probably 10 months now with no problems whatsoever. Even the dreaded move from cot to bed was ok with him (I worried he would be getting out etc etc and messing about with his newfound freedom but he was really good).

Until now.

He still sleeps well once he goes to sleep (and trust me, I know how lucky we are here!) but recently he has started getting out of bed and coming out of his bedroom, no matter how many times we put him back. It seems to be getting worse and worse and he does it at night and then in the morning (much much earlier than he used to wake up sad). Last night he then did it a few times during the night as well. When he does it in the night he never normally says anything you just put him back in bed and he's ok. But when he first goes to bed it is getting really silly.

I should say that I know this is a common problem and loads of people have it when they first switch to a bed.

In the past we have had to do a bit of 'ignoring' if he shouts at bed time (you know how you kind of know if they really want something or if they just want you to keep going back in so we've managed to get him to mainly stop that). However, with the shouting thing he can learn that it doesn't get a response.

When he comes out of his room though I have to go and put him back in, so as a form of attention seeking it is very effective. And all he is learning at the moment is that if he hops out of bed and opens the door one of us will appear to put him back in.

I don't want it to become a habit but I don't know how to 'counter' it. If we were to ignore him he would come downstairs and then eventually we'd have to put him back in bed.

I should say, I do realise that this isn't a massive problem and we are really lucky that he sleeps as well as he does (once he stays in bed long enough to actually go to sleep). I just wondered if anyone had any clever tricks for this sort of thing.

Thanks you very much

Dawnybabe Mon 29-Aug-11 17:02:48

Good sturdy baby gate. Ignore him completely, however angry he gets and however much he trashes his room. Once he realises he gets absolutely no reaction from you he will eventually stop. Even he curls up asleep on the floor in front of the gate, he will still be in his room and you can always nip in and cover him with a blanket.

Worked for us. Dd1 shook the gate for a few minutes but we told her to go back to bed and she did.

He won't do it forever. I bet you won't need the gate for long. Dd1 doesn't need one anymore.

Biscuitsandtea Mon 29-Aug-11 22:41:09

Thanks Dawnybabe - I'd not thought of a gate!

Although (touch wood) he hasn't done it this evening - maybe it was a shorter phase than I gave him credit for! still glad to have an idea 'up my sleeve' as it were. I'd been sticking with calmly putting him back in and telling him it was still time for sleep, but had no 'next level' to go to.

<hoping I haven't jinxed it now>

Dawnybabe Mon 29-Aug-11 23:03:28

Obviously it might not stop him wanting to get out of his room, and he might still wake you up for a while, but at least it gets them in the habit of learning that they don't come out of their room after bedtime.

We had started to take the gate off dd1's room, but then we moved house and it unsettled her to the point that she kept waking up in the middle of the night and going round the entire house putting all the lights on and waking everybody up! So the gate went back on.

She's absolutely fine now. Good luck.

JumpJockey Sat 03-Sep-11 07:08:15

Argh Dawny that sound bad... Was about to post something similar, dd1 is 3 i. December and having been great at going to bed, for the last couple of weeks (since a: she had chickenpox and b: we hot back from holidy) she's taken a good 2 hours to settle from start of bedtime routine - bath, stories etc, she asks for one more mummy cuddle. Then one more. Each time agrees this is the last one. I (or dh) say this is the last one, she leaps out if bed to tbe top of the stairs and just wails and shrieks. She has sleepy music, night light, teddies etc, just says she doesn't want to go to bed. It wouldn't be so bad to let her get on with it but she keeps waking dd2 (nearly 8 months) and that really pisses me off!

She did this a while back and we put the sides back on her cotbed, then did a week's "staying in bed" reward chart. Can't really do that now as she's out of nappies at night and has a potty in her room, she's never needed it but I don't want to end up having to put her back in nappies as well.

Alas we're about to move house too, so not sure if there's much point trying to stop her at the moment as it will all be disruptes again in 3 weeks sad and intermediate ideas for what to do? Beyond one of us staying with her ti she falls asleeo, which is what she wants... (sigh)

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