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My sister has a 4yr old daughter and she would very much like to break the habit of co sleeping. She is after an effective, gentle and easy approach. Her daughter is very dependent on her mother to fall asleep at night and will be up till all hours depending on when Mum goes to bed. Suggestions would be great.


Posted anonymously, 25th March 2014


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  • I’d love to know what worked in this situation.


  • Any updates on how you went? Be interesting to see how you managed it.


  • Children can be very resilient and understanding. Sometimes just letting a child know it’s time for them to sleep in their own room might just be enough.


  • Make her room fun and inviting and ensure the bedtime routine is something worth looking forward to!


  • Make a new bed exciting, maybe try falling asleep with her in her own room.


  • maybe letting her decorate her own room? big w have bed tents at the moment which she might like sleeping in they go over the top of a single bed. Id say just take it slow with her and make her room a little special place to be!


  • We started with talking about what we will do first before we made any changes, reassured him we can still read books, have cuddles for a little while but then I have to go. We started with a mattress next to the bed before moving into a separate room.


  • Explain during the day that she’s a big girl and can go to bed in her own bed at a specific bedtime. Let her know she can choose a bedtime story and establish a routine. It will take time but consistency is the key.


  • I had the same problem with my eldest, now thirteen. He wouldnt sleep unless in bed with me. I started a slow approach when he was three (just before i had my second child) i put a mattress beside my bed, he slept there for a few nights, then i moved it to the other side of the bedroom near the door where he slept for a few nights, then into the hallway for a few nights, then his room and then his bed. It took two weeks all up but it worked for us.


  • just get her to start putting her in her own bed just before she falls asleep


  • How is it all going? Any progress?


  • We never had our DD in our bed but when she went into a toddler bed she kept getting up and coming into our room. I would read her a story and sit on the end of her bed till she went to sleep, the next week I sat in a chair in the doorway the week after that in the hallway outside her room. Just remember if they get up to consisitently take them back, reassure them but don’t give in.


  • My son is the same, we are currently trying something that my mum tried and worked with my sister a mattress on the floor and they go on that in the parents room. Eventually my sister stopped coming in to my parents bed it also gave my parents the bed to themselves. We have tried everything with my son and 20mins after going to sleep he will wake up and come into my bed anyway, so hopefully this works for us.


  • Create a nice environment for her to sleep in… Paint her walls, decorate her bedroom and let her be involved in creating her own sanctuary. Give her something new to comfort her… Some pretty fairy lights, a special doll/teddy. Then transition her slowly into her bed. Eventually she will learn to sleep alone, as long as your sister doesn’t resort back to old habits


  • I would emphasis the “big girls” thing. Make her excited about her new stages….


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