I recently read a forum for parents of toddlers, where they were debating the right time to transition from a crib to a bed. As I was reading through the comments, I realized how unconventional our sleeping arrangements are. My toddler has been on a floor bed since he was around 11 months old, and it’s been a game changer for my family. To start, he’s never been the best sleeper. I know what you’re thinking, aren’t all babies terrible sleepers? The answer is yes, but that’s what sleep training is for!
In our case, however, sleep training was an epic fail. I tried all the things, including the Ferber method, this adorable contraption, Taking Cara Babies, and every book, guide, and resource under the sun short of hiring an actual sleep consultant.
Now, I am not sharing this exhaustive list to knock any of these methods. They’ve worked for a lot of people, including many of my friends. I’m sharing this to demonstrate that everyone is different and there is nothing inherently wrong with your baby if the conventional advice isn’t working. What works for some might not work for others, and sometimes you just have to think outside of the box!
Back to floor beds. When my child was around 10 months old, we visited a family member and I slept with him on the floor on a mat. I didn’t want him to fall off the bed, and I knew he wouldn’t be comfortable in a pack and play, so this seemed like a safe alternative. I remember being amazed that we slept through the night, and when we got home, I immediately ordered the same mat to replicate their floor bed situation and never looked back!
» » » » » » » » » RELATED READ: 5 Confessions from a Sleep-Deprived “Mombie” « « « « « « « « «
Why a floor bed?
- I never wanted to cosleep or bring him to our bed because I worried he would fall.
- I don’t need to transfer him, and I can easily roll away once he’s asleep.
- He has more space and freedom of movement.
- Floor beds can promote independence as he’s able to get in and out of bed on his own.
Since our initial floor bed discovery, we’ve stepped up our game a bit. Our setup resembles this bed, and we’ve cleared out all toys, distractions, and hazards. Some nights are more challenging than others, but overall this has worked for our family and we’re all getting more sleep.
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