Our little one is 4.5 months old and sleeps in her cot in our room. She sleeps 12-14 hours straight overnight with the occasional dream feed at around 7-8am (I'm already up and about at this time).

She's now started to occasionally grizzle or talk to herself during the night - usually self-settling within 20 mins or so, but it's enough to wake us up and disturb our sleep.

My partner is keen to move her into her own room so he can sleep better, but it's me that's not ready just yet... I can feel separation anxiety coming on already!

I've heard that you should move your baby into their own room before they are 5-6 months old, before they start to understand...

When did you move your child out, what challenges did you face and what techniques did you use to help with the transition?

asked 29 Oct '09, 06:02

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Lin
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With our eldest we moved her out when she reached six months, since the SIDs advice was that they should share your room for at least that long. The initial move went pretty smoothly.

She then hit separation anxiety at about 8 months, which meant that she got very upset if we left the room when she was awake and fought sleep, presumably because she realised we would leave when she was asleep.

We tried controlled crying which was agony but worked, she was sleeping through after a week. But when, about a month later, she got a cold and started waking again I couldn't put her or myself through controlled crying again.

I discovered Elizabeth Pantley's excellent book No Cry Sleep Solution and read it cover to cover over the next few months. It made me realise that my child wasn't abnormal - children, and adults, don't like to sleep alone. After this I started bringing her in to bed with us when she woke in the night and not even trying to put her back in her room.

When I got pregnant again, we decided to give up on the separate room altogether - I was finding the night-time rearrangements too tiring. So we put a mattress on the floor in our room and she slept there. Later we got a single bed which we put between our bed and the wall. She eventually moved out of our room permanently when she was 4 and her sister was 2. They moved out together to share a double bed with each other. They still share a room at 7 and 5, although we will probably soon be moving our 27 mth old son in with the 5 yr old and the 7 yr old will get a room of her own - which she now actually wants.

I suppose my point is that it might not be as straight forward as you think it is at first. And also, that it's not unusual for children to share with their parents for several years. Don't feel pressured into doing something just because it appears to be the normal thing in your society - separate rooms is abnormal, both historically and geographically.

Oh, and finally, if you are breastfeeding and want to continue, you may like to know that babies who bedshare are likely to continue breastfeeding for longer (try searching on google for Helen Ball and breastfeeding duration, there's lots of stuff).

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answered 29 Oct '09, 10:37

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Meg Stephenson
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Very interesting SIDs link. I'd never heard it was recommended to keep them in the parents room for 6 months before.

(29 Oct '09, 14:14) Kiesa ♦

the controlled crying method sounds tough but smart. I'm glad to hear it actually worked for awhile. I'll have to keep that in mind for our little one.

(29 Oct '09, 22:57) Artemis

I'd say CC didn't really work. Not unless you are prepared to do it every time your little one gets a cold or has any disruption to their life. And it is tough.

(30 Oct '09, 09:47) Meg Stephenson

thanks Meg - I'm going to buy Pantley's book on your recommendation. You are very correct that separate rooms is abnormal and that modern society has just conditioned us to think that it's the right thing to do. I especially like your point about breastfeeding also. You have made me feel much better. Oh, and I admire you for attempting CC - I could never do it... it would break my heart.

(02 Nov '09, 05:45) Lin

We moved our eldest son into his own room at exactly 7 months, but that was due to us moving house at that point too - there seemed no point in moving him into a separate room earlier and then moving.

For the twins, it was definitely earlier - I don't know exactly how much earlier, but 4 1/2 months sounds about right.

If your daughter is sleeping through the night, it sounds like a good plan to me. As for transitions... it was never a problem with our boys. Does your daughter already "know" her own room, in terms of playing in it etc? If not, that might help... but as I say, in our case it was no problem at all. We just moved their cots and they couldn't have cared less :)

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answered 29 Oct '09, 06:27

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Jon Skeet
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+1 took the words right out of my mouth... yet again =8-)

(29 Oct '09, 09:04) Yuval

+1 thanks Jon - no, she has never been in her own room yet. I will get her acquainted with it though as you suggest.

(02 Nov '09, 05:47) Lin

I was the one that wanted to hold on a little bit longer too and keep my son in our room. But we moved him around 4 months and after a few nights I realized that I was sleeping a lot better and he wasn't fazed by the transition. The only bad part was having to get up in the middle of the night, go to his room and get him to feed him . . . not as easy as when he was in my room! I would say that if she is sleeping through the night, now would be a good time. I do believe that the older they get the tougher it will be to transition her!

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answered 29 Oct '09, 06:34

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Melissa 1
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We moved our son into his own room at 4 weeks old. He took to the crib immediately, probably because he was too young to know any difference. I did experience a bit of anxiety, but I have a video monitor which really helped- I was the one who was up the first few nights-- watching him on the screen! I sleep really well now knowing that I can look at how he's doing any time I want. I suggest you invest in one, it's great!

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answered 29 Oct '09, 12:09

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DazedandConfused
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Interesting you mention the video monitor. When I was pregnant and shopping for a monitor I thought of them as excessive; however, when I was constantly checking on my daughter every time I heard her stir in the middle of the night due to fear of SIDS etc... I thought I video monitored would of been a fantastic idea and allowed me to sleep a little better.

(31 Oct '09, 01:01) Tammy ♦♦

@DazedandConfused: thanks for that - I also have a question out there re baby monitors... can I ask which one you have? A video monitor would put me more at ease and I hadn't thought of that as an option

(02 Nov '09, 05:39) Lin

I use the "Summer" brand, it's great. It has night vision and doesn't make the baby's crib bright, yet you could see him as though it were day time... I can even tell when his eyes are open!

I just checked at Babies R Us and see they have all sorts of models.

Check here: http://www.toysrus.ca/search/index.jsp?f=Taxonomy%2FTRUSCA%2F2510384&kw=summer+monitor

(02 Nov '09, 15:04) DazedandConfused

It is totally up to you when you want to move your daughter to her own room. We co-slept for almost 2 years and it was fine with both of us. It really needs to be something that you and your partner both agree on. My daughter sleeps fine in her room now. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

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answered 29 Oct '09, 15:38

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Michelle
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We moved both of our children to their own room around 3 months old. Our daughter was sleeping through the night at that point, so we really didn't have any problems there. My son was still nursing during the night, so I would get up, get him, feed him and put him back down. Sometimes, if I was really tired, I would carry him back into my bedroom to lay down while he ate, then I would take him back to his room.

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answered 29 Oct '09, 14:58

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mkcoehoorn
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1 year, but it would have been sooner had we had an extra room before then. She took to it and still is happy to go to her room and ask to be put to bed when she is tired.

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answered 30 Oct '09, 17:37

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Asked: 29 Oct '09, 06:02

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Last updated: 30 Oct '09, 17:37