Establishing A Bedtime Routine With Your Baby – What Worked For Us
With both of our boys (Ethan now 4 and Logan now 2), we were lucky that their going to sleep was never a constant battle, but I can remember feeling a bit like I was going to break due to the lack of sleep (especially during the tougher phases). There was a time when we found ourselves in a phase of sharing our bed every night. There was even a time when we had to pick our youngest son up from his grandparents because he'd woke up at 2 o'clock in the morning and just outright refused to accept that he needed to go back to sleep. There were also times when I would feel consumed with Mum-guilt because my baby would wake up at night crying, and we'd struggle to settle him back off to sleep.
But I expect that this same sort of story is usual for parents of babies. I feel very thankful that it didn't take us too long to be able to establish good routines and find an approach that meant the sleepless nights weren't long term.
Setting a routine
The first thing we made sure to do was be consistent with a bedtime routine. The importance of routine was proven to us when our first son was quite young, and we didn't quite realise how much a change to his normal routine would affect him while we were on holiday. While away, we let him stay up a bit later and also come into our bed with us. Naively, we thought he'd be fine going back into his own bed when we were home again. But, of course, he wasn't, and what followed was quite a hard bedtime battle phase. So ever since then we've tried to keep to a good routine when it comes to going to bed.