From co-sleeping to crib... — The Bump
Babies: 6 - 9 Months

From co-sleeping to crib...

Hi! My son is 8 1/2 months old and we are trying to transition from co-sleeping to his crib. As predicted by many, this has been a difficult process. I did not plan on co-sleeping; however, due to his difficulties with gas as a newborn and pure exhaustion on my end! it happened. 

CIO will not work with him. His crying increases with intensity the longer he goes. Currently, I rock him to sleep and try to put him in his crib. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. He will also only nap if held or in car seat or stroller. I know I've created this, but there has got to be a way to undo it!  

Re: From co-sleeping to crib...

  • I honestly have no advice, besides read the Ferber book and implement his method. I know you said your son can't CIO, but have you really tried? My son is ridiculously stubborn and will scream his head off for hours in his crib, but I did Ferber, and it worked! You have a lot of things to work out, so you're going to have to focus on each onebyone. Just think, teaching your baby to sleep on his own, in his crib, without you next to him, is HELPING him. He needs independence and to learn to sleep. So any way you can get it done, you should do it. There are other nocry solutions out there, but from what I see on this board, they don't really work. Maybe someone else will chime in with a success story of a nocry method? My suggestion read the Ferber book and follow it! You need to stay consistent and don't give in and I guarantee you'll see improvement within 34 days. It's soo worth it... Such a lifesaver for us in our house! I did it for both kids and now they're rockstar sleepers :
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  • I read the No Cry Sleep Solution, thinking it was the only way for me, but I didn't get any where with those methods.  Tonight is our first night trying the Ferber methods and I am trying to occupy myself while passing the time for the first ten minute wait.  She seems to be winding down ... wish me luck.  I hope that you find a good solution for your little one's transition.
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  • I had to sleep train, because he was not getting enough sleep when he was in our room waking hourly. So we ready sleep easy solution, and moved him to his crib. It took about 3 days till things got great, and after about a week, no more crying when I put him down.

     Sounds like you're not interested in using a CIO method, but when you tried it what method were you using? How were you comforting him? Were you comforting him at specific intervals? How long did you let him cry...It does intensify before it gets better. Especially when LO is use to you always coming when he cries.  What was your routine before putting him into bed? Was he drowsy when you out him in his crib?

    I did try CIO before I read about a specific method, and it did not work at all. When I read about the routine, the comforting, the intervals, and the average time to expect a baby to cry for the first few nights, it was much more successful.

     I don't have much advice since I did use sleep training, but I hope it gets better for you.

     I still get up with Chase at night, but he is sleeping in 3-4 hour increments instead of one hour increments, and he is much happier during the day and meeting milestones.

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  • Try reading The No Cry Sleep Solution. It is a great book that avoids CIO.
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  • I like the baby whsiperer's pick up/put down and shush pat methods. Essentially you pat LO until drowsy then put in their cot. You keep patting them untilt hey're asleep. If they start to cry, you pick them up and as soon as they are calm you put them back in their cot, and continue patting. Rinse and repeat as often as required.

    It can take a while, and if your LO is not used to sleeping in their cot at all then it will probably take longer than average, but your LO will go to sleep eventually, because they can't fight it forever.

    We bedshared with LO until 8mths, and are now transitioning her to her cot at night. We're doing ok at the start of the night, but she wakes in the middle of the night. She's teething right now, so I'm just doing whatever to get by, but once she's through the other side of that I'll be more insistent on her sleeping by herself. 

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  • Have you tried putting your munchkin in the crib and stay and play or just sit and watch him play.. that way they don't just associate the crib with being left alone to sleep.  We co-sleep too and it wasn't our intention either, but he will nap in his crib, which is at the end of  our bed and sometimes even sleep for a good 6 hours or so till he needs to feed and then he comes back to our bed... and he plays in there if I need to put him somewhere safe for a few minutes.  He has a kick piano tied to the end of his crib and loves that because it is similar to his kick n play piano playmat which has always been a favorite.

    There were certain things he learnt to associate with sleep time ..  a  monkey that plays white noise, a tune and jungle sounds.. a glow worm that plays lullabys and also we installed a solar system mobile on the ceiling, the sun lights up and the planets orbit the sun and he loves that.  He also loves having mamas and papas dream a little dream sung or hummed to him and that's another of his sleepy nap cues.  Back rubs and butt pat also is a relaxation cue for him. 

    He will not sleep if he is too cold, hot or hungry or has gas, so if you eliminate all of those you may have more luck.

    Usually we will  cuddle him upright till he starts getting sleepy, then lay him horizontal in my arms facing me, then roll him so he is laid on his back in my arms and then when he is getting zoinked  he is an easy transfer to the crib as he doesn't have that shift in position or sudden loss of body contact to jolt him awake. 

    Usually if he is just about ready to go as soon as you lay him down he rolls to his side and he is out, occasionally he wil take a pat or two or a back rub and then he is done. When that isn't working the glow worm comes into play and if a couple of rounds of that don't do the trick  he gets picked up.. cuddle pat  and as pp said.. rinse n repeat lol.

    He isn't always easy to get down and will fight it but he doesn't throw a total fit at being in his crib like he did in the very beginning.  I watch him on my android from work and he will goof off and play in there for a good half hour after he wakes up before he alerts daddy that he is awake and wants food NOW !!!  I would totally try and get the munchkin to like his crib before expecting him to just go sleep  in it.

    You just have to figure out your lil ones comfort needs and work with that to make them feel ok about being in the crib. 

    Just don't leave the toys etc in the crib overnight while you are asleep, but if you can find a toy that they can activate themself.. like the glow worm or keyboard instead of one you have to turn on and off.. that may help as it gives them control over their comfort toys and sleep timing.
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  • Try rocking him not quite all the way to sleep and then put him in his crib. See if you can pat him all the way to sleep in the crib. If he throws a fit pick him back up and calm him down, then try again. Eventually work your way up to being able to put him in the crib and have him fall asleep on his own, no patting or anything from you. I'm working on this right now with my boy. If I lay him down in a light sleep or drowsy and he falls asleep in the crib , sometimes he'll sleep for over an hour there. If he's deep asleep when I lay him down he's awake again in 30 to 45 min. It's a slow process but crying is minimal. GL!
  • Have you read the Sleep Lady's Good Night Sleep Tight?  We haven't done any sleep training yet (mostly because we're not ready to put in all that work and commitment and DD sleep is not great but ok) but if we were to do sleep training this is the method I would choose.  It just seems much gentler to me than other methods.  Essentially, you put down baby drowsy but awake and comfort while staying by the crib the whole time until the baby falls asleep.  Every three nights or so you move farther away from the crib.  Google sleep lady shuffle and you should find it.
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  • I think you will have to do CIO as well. too many issues to tackle. I second the sleep easy solution. we did it at 4 months but never cobedded. it took 5 nights. it is so worth it! my daughter sleeps about 12 hours at night plus 4 hours total of naps. my friend has a 2 year old who cobeds, breadtfeeds, and is a terrible sleeper! my friend has not slept in years and is miserable!
  • Thank you everyone for all the thoughtful advice and suggestions.  Last night I put him down super sleepy but awake. He woke up immediately and cried for a minute or two. Then he started playing around in his crib. After about 20 minutes he started crying. I was standing next to his crib the whole time, trying to soothe him with belly/patting and rubbing his head. He continued to scream for an hour and a half with no reduction in the intensity. My fianc? came in and we decided that this method was not working and that we would try something different the following night ( tonight ). Will keep everyone posted on how it goes. 
  • Our DS is also 8 months old and we are transitioning from cosleeping to the crib. His crib is in our room, squished up against my side of the bed. He sleeps there for naps now, although his naps are shorter than they were before. I also have him sleep there at night. 

    I nurse him to sleep, wait until he is super out (limp, floppy limbs), then lower him into his crib and place a hand on his tummy. Once he is super relaxed again I put a light blanket on him and I can leave the room or go to sleep my self. At night, he wakes up a few times (2-3), whereas he never woke up at night while cosleeping once we were past the newborn stage. I scoop him out, cuddle him for maybe 2 minutes while he falls back to sleep and goes all limp-limbed, then he goes back in the crib.

    CIO is  not for us, and I know he will fall asleep almost instantly if I pick him up, so I do. But if you are interested in sleep training definitely get a book, read it, and follow it (if you aren't consistent I don't believe it will work).

    Good luck! 

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