How do I get my 6 year old son to sleep in his own bed?
June 18, 2014 10:04 AM Subscribe
My son has been sleeping in my bed since he was a tiny infant. He's nearly six now. So how can I gently and kindly get him to sleep in his own bed, in his own room? A few more pertinent details follow below.
Except for a brief few months when my son was in the 12-18 month range, he has always slept in the big bed. Cosleeping with a baby is all fine and well (well, let's be honest, not always), and even with a toddler it's doable (and sometimes not), but he's nearly 6 years old now and I am starting to want my bed back. He and I have talked about it and he's not enthusiastic. What makes this harder is that his father and I separated nine months ago and while relations between the two of us are really quite civil --friendly, even-- it remains a fact that the little guy is going through the sadness and upheaval of watching his parents divorce. When his father was in the picture, it was the three of us in the bed, and when his father moved to the couch, it was just my son and me. Now his father is out of the house entirely, my son is nearly six, and while I recognize that he'll likely want to go to his own room eventually (before puberty hits, please God), I can't help but feel that it's time for Mama to get her bed back. I take enormous pleasure in the fact that my son is an independent person, with his own ideas and opinons and quirks, and part of me would like to foster more of that *and* foster my own independence by recovering my bed. In the interest of being fully honest and thus getting useful advice, I must also say that I'm also motivated by the fact that I have a boyfriend who someday —NOT IMMEDIATELY, I hasten add— will likely be staying over, or with whom I might—NOT IMMEDIATELY— want to live with. I have absolutely no intention of making a little boy who's already going through a tough time have to deal with more upheaval right now, and as far as the boyfriend overnights or possible cohabitation goes, I'm imagining this *maybe* happening anywhere from six months to a year from now. But if it's ever going to happen, I need to lay the groundwork now. So does anyone have any concrete advice on how to go about this in a kind, humane, and thoughtful way?