Transition from Toddler Bed to Twin Bed

Updated on October 27, 2010
J.B. asks from Marrero, LA
8 answers

Hey mamas,
I am getting a new bed for my son tomorrow and I am a little curious about the best way to transition. It is a twin bunk bed set that is solid wood, relatively new and nice. I showed my son pics of the bed(s) and he is really excited. The only thing I am a little hesitant on is will sleeping under a bed freak him out since he has been able to see the ceiling his whole life? This will be totally new for him. If the bunks can be separated, I am going to do that, but as it is a gift I won't know that until tomorrow. Anyway my question is should I leave his toddler bed in his room, in case it is too much for him or just have a little goodbye to the toddler bed and then stick it right up in the attic and never look back? My son is pretty adaptable but his father is away this week on business and I just don't know if changing beds will be a stressor or not. My son is three and really quite big for his toddler bed so it is time and he is excited. How have some of your kids handled switching beds? Just FYI, I will have him on the bottom bunk of course with the stair side on the wall so he can't get to the top bunk quite yet. Thanks for any thoughts or advice.

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answers from Minneapolis on

We just talked it up a lot and got him really excited. We also had him pick out sheets and then he got to show all his friends. We did it at 2 1/2 so I think he's definitely ready. As for the bed above, maybe you could put glow in the dark stars or something he might like (stickers?). We did it because we have #2 on the way so his toddler bed was in another room (we actually moved him to another room as well). I left it because we didn't want him to think we were kicking him out because of the baby. All of the books I read said to do it early enough that he doesn't relate the 2 together.

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answers from San Angelo on

I agree with Danielle P. We did it when my son was 3 and I let him pick his new "big boy" bedding and I put glow in the dark stars on the underside of the top bunk support planks. He thought it was the coolest thing ever. He also loves when I turn it into a fort by putting a blanket hanging down from the top bunk.
If he is excited and you play it up for him, I think he will be fine if you just take the toddler bed and put it away.
Good Luck!

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answers from Austin on

He sounds like a happy little guy who is excited about the new bed. Don't even mention the ceiling thing...I would never have thought of it and I doubt he will unless you put it in his head. You had a good idea in putting the ladder where he can't climb it, but don't be surprised if he finds another way up there. He'll be fine. My kids never had an issue at all, especially since this is not from his crib, just from a toddler bed to a "big boy" bed. Just keep saying all the positive stuff. Good luck.

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answers from Chicago on

We left the toddler bed up in our daughter's room -- transitioned her to a twin bed last month. We plan to take it down and move it in December once we know what sex baby #3 will be. We did leave it up initially so she could be comfortable and CHOOSE which bed to sleep in. Of course she chose the twin bed with the nice new princess sheets :) That helped. My daughter is also 3 (July birthday). Good luck!

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answers from Wausau on

I suggest putting away the toddler bed and being done with it. I think that if he has the option to use either bed, it will make the transition harder on him.

Maybe do something fun, like let him pick out new sheets for the bed, to make it special. Or maybe a new stuffed toy to sleep with. Something to mark the occasion as special. We just moved my son from his crib to his toddler bed, and it went very smoothly. I hope it goes smoothly for you as well.

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answers from Phoenix on

Just a thought, my son went straight from a crib to a twin (the twin was a gift and we didn't have money for a toddler bed). He was a little over 2 and we talked about it and then had him in the room "helping" take down his crib and set up the bed, that seemed to help to have him involved. There was a point when the crib came apart that he cried, but calmed down quickly as we got the new bed up. My advice is let him help, and let him see where the old bed is going so he isn't losing it, but I would put it away now. Good luck!

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answers from Houston on

I have four kiddos and what I found works best is this:

I left the toddler bed up in the room and had the child sleep naps in the big new bed, and night time in the toddler bed. For some reason it's easier to get them to try something new for naptime then for bedtime (like weaning from a bottle or breast.) Then when naptimes go really well in the new bed, without concern or fussing, it's time to try night time.

I never just take away the toddler bed because there's an emotional connection there, like to a favorite blanket or stuffed animal or doesn't hurt the child to allow him to sleep in both for now, and make a gradual transition.

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answers from Redding on

Maybe you could hang something really fun from the underside of the bunk bed like glow in the dark stars?

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