Too Soon for Toddler Bed?

Updated on July 09, 2008
L.G. asks from San Diego, CA
8 answers

I'm confused as how to get prepared for baby girl two in our lives. #1 is 13 months old, currently in a crib and just recently started sleeping through the night. Still takes two naps a day. She will be 18 months old when #2 arrives. Her crib does convert to a toddler bed. Trying to think of the best (and most economical way) to provide beds our daughters. We kept #1 in a bassinette for 3 months and still have that. Do we buy another crib for #2 and then have two cribs? Do we get a cheap toddler bed for #1 and move crib for #2? Do we buy regular beds (such as bunk beds) and put #1 in one with rails and have that big purchase done? I think #1 might be too young for a bigger bed and it might cause me more hassle trying to chase her back into a bed she can get out of with a newborn around. On the otherhand, I'm not sure how I will put her down to sleep (besides placing her in the crib standing up) when my belly gets so big.... I'm confused!! How have others done this??? It can't be this difficult!!!

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answers from Las Vegas on


My son was 23 months when my daughter was born. I wanted him to be transitioned to a bigger bed by the time she arrived. I didn't want him to feel forced out of the crib. We were given a toddler bed and mattress from a friend and had that in his room from 15 months and on. He didn't sleep in it until he was about 21 months old. I agree with previous responses as to it just depends on the childs personality. Will she sleep in a toddler/big bed without climbing out and running around the room. If she won't then you probably might need to keep her in a crib longer. I might wait and see how things go. You could try converting her bed in the next few months to a toddler bed. Then once she is used to that you could get her a less inexpensive toddler bed or a twin. The toddler bed is a little bit of a waste of money in my opinion. My son is almost 3 1/2 and pretty much outgrew his in less than a 1 1/2 yrs. Good luck!



answers from Honolulu on

Child #1 can still be in her the lowest position with the rails up... since she still sleeps well this way. Although, by 18 months old when baby #2 comes, her sleep patterns "may" changes.

Keep the bassinet from baby #1, for baby #2. Use it for baby #2.
OR, you can get a "Moses" basket for baby #2, which is what we did. I LOVED the Moses basket... it's so practical and my son loved it. You can use the Moses basket for about 3 months or until baby outgrows it. Then, put baby #2 in crib. this time, child #1 will be 21 months old at this point... then you may choose to get her a "toddler bed" and segue her into this, with rails. (some children climb and get out of their beds and won't stay put. So, you will need to expect a "transition period" for her to adjust to her new sleeping quarters/habit, at the same time you have the new baby. THUS, *** perhaps have your Hubby deal with this "job." Have HIM handle your Child #1 and putting her to bed in her toddler bed....thereby you can have time to handle baby #1 and all that entails and getting her/him nursings and to bed too, and for wakings).

At the same time, your Child #1 will ALSO be needing understanding that she will also be having to adjust to a new "sibling." This can bring either good or difficult transitioning for the first child. It can take time, or not, for Child #1 to adjust. They need their own time and understanding. Don't expect the eldest child to suddenly act "grown up" and "accept" the new baby... they are going through LOTS of emotional changes too with a new family structure etc. Talk with her a lot and give her reassurances etc. I always tell my eldest "You are ALWAYS Mommy's FIRST baby.. .and I love you very much..."

Sorry have to rush off to get my kids to nap... but take care and good luck!



answers from Los Angeles on

A lot depends on the personalities of your daughters. DD #1 never attempted climbing out of her crib and stayed in one until 2 1/2 when we transitioned her straight to a double bed with ease. DD #2 is a whole other ball of yarn. She was climbing as soon as she could walk. We put her in a toddler bed at 19 months. If your oldest is a mellow kid, I'd keep her in the crib and buy a second crib. If she's a climber go for the toddler bed, but you will need to transition her soon. For months I'd find my daughter asleep on the floor of her bedroom instead of her toddler bed. I would also hold off on that big purchase. We spent $1500 on DD #1's beautiful bedroom set. She has thrashed it!



answers from Los Angeles on

I put my twin girls in toddler beds at 20 months, but their baby brother was 3 months, and needed to be in the crib. My girls slept together and out grew the crib, so we went with toddler beds thinking they might still want to sleep together. I dont think She too young, but it is a lot more work! We used to read, pray, hugs, kisses, light out and door closed... for the first few months we had a battle every night to get them to stay in their beds, we always found them playing. but once they adjusted it was fine. They are almost 3 and still in their princess toddler beds! (I only wish I would have gotten one that could be used for their brother).



answers from Reno on

My son was about 18 months when we started converting him to a big bed. We actually were given bunk beds so we had them broken down and the top bunk is his bed because of the railings. For a long time he had the bigger bed but still could not get out of it because of the height and the railings. It was actually really great. We did have some difficulty when he learned to get out of it but we would just put him back in bed, tell him goodnight and leave the room. I do agree that it does depend on the personality of the child and if they are ready for the move. My experience is I would try to move your 1st child to a big bed so that you do not have to purchase another crib. But you do need to think about how she will feel if she sees her little sibling in "her" crib. If you are going to do the transitition do it sooner then later so that she is not just moving when you will need it for your 2nd child. I hope this helps you. Good luck!



answers from Los Angeles on

What a great story! Thanks for sharing!
We moved our son into a regular bed (not even a toddler bed) at 1.5 years. We were co-sleepers then moved him on a crib mattress at the foot of our bed then into his own room and bed. We never used our crib-we now have #2 coming right after yours and I wonder what we will do. We will probably use the bassinette or something and try the crib to see how it goes. I too had a baby later in life and was nervous about being away from him after all we went through to have him-BUT rest assured you can transition if you really want to try it out. The best investment was the Twilight Turtle that we still put on every night that gives stars on the ceiling for 45 minutes every night-HE LOVES it but it is for the BIG BOY BED!

I know you will do what works best for you GOOD LUCK!



answers from Reno on

I know I am a bit late with this response, but I felt your confusions. My two boys are 14 months apart so I had the same questions as to when or if I should switch big brother to a bed or get another crib. I feel that you know your big sis the best and if you think she would handle the change without blaming new baby then make the change. I went with buying another crib for my baby, since big brother was a GREAT sleeper in his crib and I was so tired being pregnant, that I did not want to lose the good sleeper. I know that any change in bed was going to take alot of getting use to for big brother and I did not have the energy for it. Baby arrived and was in a bassinet with us for several months then both boys started out in the same room with their two cribs and are both excellent sleepers. When big brother was a bit over 2 we moved him into a toddler bed and when he was too big for the toddler bed we bought the bunk beds! So big brother gets the top with railings all the way around and little brother is in the toddler bed under the top bunk. We put baby in toddler bed since he is a great sleeper but likes to be snuggled WAY up inot the corner and we had concernes that the twin would feel too open to him. Still have great sleepers! I just feel that you know what your child can hanlde and how much strength and enery you have to help her thru the transition. God bless you and ALL your little miracles :)
I had to in vitro babies and then along came baby #3 from birth control pills :) Gotta love the way God works in you life!



answers from San Diego on

We moved our first daughter into a queen sized bed at 14 months because she kept climbing out and falling onto our hardwood floor. We just had one of those bedrails that you can buy so she wouldn't fall out. We bought the toddler bed for my second and she never uses it. I think toddler beds are a waste of money. Just buy her a big girl bed and use the crib for the baby. Let her pick out her bed so she feels special about it (because it might be strange for her to see that you took her bed and gave it to the baby). Let her pick her bedspread too. I bet she would get a kick out of all of it! If you plan on switching do it soon so that she has time to adjust to the idea of the big girl bed before the baby comes! Best of luck and congrats on two beautiful children!

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