Finding a Comfort Item for Bedtime

Updated on September 29, 2011
T.G. asks from Aubrey, TX
16 answers

How do you find a comfort item for a 2 almost 3 year old? Do I take her to the store and have her pick something she wants to sleep with? What if she picks a toy train or something? How do i keep it related to bedtime? She has some anxiety about being in her room alone. We let her pick out a blanket and pillow to sleep on that didn't help. I tried buying her a buzz light year stuff toy with no luck. So I want her to pick something but dont know what approach to take.

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answers from Dallas on

My daughter has a night light from Ikea that changes colors. It charges and can remained plugged in, or you can take it off the charger and put it anywhere. She also listens to an ipod all night long and has since she was in her own room. She has tons of lovies... Donald is her favorite, but she sleeps with others as well. The light and music seem to do trick and I don't have to worry about losing them.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

Have you thought about a pillow pet? I didn't even really think about it myself but my SIL gave my son (when he was about 22 months) a dog pillow pet and he loves it!!! He's so excited when it's bed time and he says Dog! Dog! and then lays down with him. I just got him a Thomas the Train pillow pet for when he naps at my mom's house, he was way excited about that one too. This way it's a lovie and a pillow and it's pretty easy to travel and wash.

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answers from Los Angeles on

Maybe she doesn't need something to snuggle with since she already has the blanket, pillow and Buzz Lightyear that don't work, and I don't see that her picking anything out would increase the chance of her using it to comfort her to sleep. And usually the thing a child has as a lovie at 2 or 3 is something they've had since infancy. Seems as if she needs something to lesson her anxiety and relax her so she can fall asleep.

My suggestion would be to get her a nightlight by Cloud B that projects constellations on the ceiling. It stays on about 45 minutes, which should be long enough for her to gaze at it, relax and fall asleep. Here's the ladybug, they come in turtles and such as well and in different colors:

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answers from Boston on

My son is younger than your daughter (18 months), but he's never been the best sleeper...until recently! Over the summer, I introduced a "lovey" - very soft bear with a small blanket attached to the bottom. I made sure to pair the bear consistently every night with our bedtime routine. If I was nursing or giving him a bottle, I put the bear between us. I also slept with it myself for a while to give it my "smell" before introducing it to him - probably more important for an infant than a 2-3 year old though - I'm guessing. Anyway, he came to LOVE this lovey. When I give it to him at bedtime now he laughs and gives it hugs and kisses - adorable. He also knows that it means BEDTIME! He knows that once he gets the bear, it's time for a bottle and stories, waves night-night to his big sister and runs to the bedroom.

I'm not so sure it's important to let your daughter pick out her item; I have a daughter who's 3 and half....I think if I were trying to help her in this way, I might pick something myself that I would be sure she'd love and give it to her as a special gift, perhaps...? Maybe you could put the item in her bed for her to find - like a new bedtime-buddy who accompanies you during whatever you do for a bedtime routine....??

Hope this helps! Good luck!

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answers from Washington DC on

In my experience, nothing worked but what she chose herself, which happened to be a toy she had since infancy - that they no longer sell, of course. So when it went missing we had some sleepless nights. Frankly, if you can avoid the lovey, you might spare yourselves some trauma when it goes missing. If you do take her to the store to get one, get a spare.

Up until about 6 months ago, my DD had no lovey. She slept with some toy, but not always the same. It's an individual thing, I think. And even with the lovey, we still have to inspect her room for monsters before bed. I also leave her door cracked until I go to bed, but tell her that I'll shut her door to keep the cat out so she doesn't freak out if she sees it shut at night.

What about one of those little pillow pets? They're cute and can double as a car pillow, too.

If she picks out a train, then so be it. At least she'll sleep. My DD regularly sleeps on books and random items that she lost in her bed.

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answers from Wichita Falls on

We ended up getting our daughter a HUGE dog. It's kinda flat (like a pound puppy) so she actually sleeps on it. It doesn't travel well but it's imposible to lose. The dog "chases the bad dreams away".

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answers from Dallas on

Scent is a very strong emotional trigger. My almost 2 year old wouldn't even get anywhere near her bed until my mother in law came up with a brilliant idea. She took one my husband's old t-shirts and cut and sewed it into a small blanket. The first time we offered it to my daughter was in her crib. She was screaming to get out. We handed her the t-shirt blankie and touched it to her cheek. She immediately snuggled it up to her chest and laid down. Since then grandma has made a few more blankies out of Daddy's childhood Star Wars sheets she found in her attic. Try offering a pillowcase off of your own bed and see if the scent of her parents will help comfort her. Good luck.


answers from Spokane on

I would take her a let her pick out whatever (within reason) she thinks will help her feel safe at night.
My 3 y/o sleeps with something every night. Sometimes it's a book, sometimes a toy car, sometimes a stuffed animal. Whatever makes him happy :)
good luck!


answers from Jacksonville on

My daughter has lots of loveys. She loves dogs and her first lovey was a stuffed floppy Pluto. (never seen another one like it anywhere, either). She absolutely loves all stuffed dogs and has quite a collection. She has cycled through sleeping with different ones (usually the most recently acquired, then when it is less "new" she'll grab an oldie but goody). She is 10 now, and while I used to pick them out for her (the softer the fur and squishy the stuffing the better), I let her pick her own these days. Target usually has a fantastic selection of soft fluffy stuffed animals. And they rarely cost more than about $10. My daughter's latest, however, the super duper sized pup (seriously, the dog is 4 feet long) that she bought with her own money cost closer to $20. She also HAD to have a pillow pet, and her brother gave her the panda one for Xmas. She likes it alot too.



answers from Dallas on

I had this same issue with my son, until I found the children's "themed" pillows at Target. They are essentially pillows (very soft and cuddly), but shaped and look like the characters. My 2 year old has the "Brobee" one from Yo Gabba Gabba, and carries it everywhere. I got my 4 year old daughter the Dora one (very cute), and she loves it as well. You might try it. They're only about $15, and I'm sure they probably have them online too. I also use a sound machine (have with all 3 of my kids), and that is very soothing. I keep it on "white noise", but it has several settings. Got it at Brookstone, and my 4 and 6 year old still fall to sleep to it. Good luck!



answers from Oklahoma City on

Both my daughters really enjoyed a GLO E Teddy Bear. He lights up with 7 different colors. They come in other animals as well. If you can't find one in store then Ebay is a great place to look for one. The only problem is that they are NOT machine washable. I ended up buying another one and took his electronics out once my daughter didn't mind if he lit up or not. That way I could just put it in the washer and dryer.


answers from Dallas on

I gave my kids pillow pets for Easter. If they feel they need something else, they usually grab a teddy bear or doll baby out of the toy box. Kids find thier own thing that works for them. When my son was 2, he wanted to sleep with my silky robe. He liked the smell of me on it and the texture was a big deal. With my oldest is was a gloworm because she was afraid of the dark


answers from Phoenix on

I would just take her and let her pick something like those little stuffed animals that are also a blanket, if you know what I'm talking about. Its a little square piece of blanket but it has a head and feet on it so its like a stuffed animal too. They make things specifically to "comfort" kids. They are soft and comforting and able to be slept with. Also about the comment on what if she picks out a train, who cares? Its good for kids to play with both "boy and G." toys, it makes them well rounded. Good luck!!!



answers from Dallas on

My daughter is excatly the same age- we use to have bedtime struggles- this is what has worked for us @ bedtime:
1. Established routine- everynight 30 minutes before bedtime it's exactly the same
2. Nightlight- which she picked out
3. Stuffed animals- which she picked out. Don't give her the option of a train. Pick out 5 that you're ok with and have her choose. We have her stuffed dog with her where ever she goes- not just night time. At school when she gets axious they'd give her the dog- I'd find something she likes, and take it with her wherever she goes. It doesn't need to be related to bedtime, it just needs to be related to comfort.



answers from Boston on

I started giving my first daughter a blanket to sleep with every night since she turned one, she'll be 9 in a couple of months. It got soooo used it basically fell apart. I had to sew it multiple times (strangling hazard!). Anyway, when I eventually had to cut a bunch off and make it smaller I started patching the holes it got. Here comes my point of the story....I've patched it with items of clothing that mean something to her. She outgrew a pair of footie pajamas and actually cried because she couldn't wear them anymore. I used those for a patch until they were gone. She loved her
original blanket but she really loved that it now contained a part of her fave
jammies. Then she also loved a super soft zip up sweater I use to
wear...I say use to because I needed a new special clothing item to repair
more holes in blankie. I cut that sucker up and patched blankie up! Her
comfort was totally worth losing the sweater over. The ONLY original part of the blanket is the satiny edge (that I totally cut off the original blanket and then sewed back on the smaller reconstructed one)....the entire "inside" of the blanket now is ALL special patches. It's quite a work of art!

Are there any special clothing items around the house...either hers she's outgrown, yours or your husbands, that you could make a lovey out of?



answers from Dallas on

Does your daughter like the sesame street characters? Target sells small stuffed animals of the sesame street characters. My son has Elmo and Zoe and adores them! They are the perfect size for sleeping. I have two of each in case one gets lost etc. Let her pick it out. That's what we did.

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