The Great Crib Debate

Last week, I took Baby J. to the Doctors for a well visit. We absolutely love our Dr., who is not a pediatrician but rather a family Dr., and Baby J. is very comfortable with her. For some reason, and I suspect it’s because DH was at work that morning and didn’t join us, Baby J. was particularly unhappy. This very unlikely behavior, she usually loves seeing the Dr., made her check up pretty difficult. Nevertheless, we managed to learn that she is now 75% height and 25% weight, and that she is B”H developing nicely.

Before we left, the Dr. asked me if she was dressing herself. I said that she was really into picking out her clothes (i.e. opening up her dresser and tossing all of her shirts, sweaters and pants on to the floor for Mommy to clean up) but otherwise, she hadn’t really tried to dress herself. She does hold out her arms for me to put on her jacket, and she is really into putting on hats, but otherwise she hasn’t tried to take off her pants or put on her shirt. The Dr. encourage me to work with her on dressing herself and I made a mental note to work on it. (Shockingly, two days later Baby J. figured out how to pull down the zipper and took off her shoes and socks. Talk about instant gratification!).

As I was struggling to get Baby J. back into her winter jacket, the Dr. asked me if she was in a toddler bed yet. I was a little taken aback by the question and replied honestly, that she was still in her crib. She then suggested that we move Baby J. to a toddler bed to “help with the growing up process.”

I left the appointment extremely torn and, once I got home, immediately took to Twitter to ask for some Mommy advice. Should I, or shouldn’t I, move Baby J. to a toddler bed? I always thought that, until she tries to climb out of it herself, she can stay in the crib. I never thought that I was stunting her growth – so to speak – by keeping her in a crib when she could very well already be in a bed.

The responses I received varied greatly, many people said not to rock the boat if she was happy, others agreed with the Dr. and said to move her over. Of course, Mom also had to weigh in, and she brought up a third opinion. If I’m going to move her into a bed, I better do it before the new baby comes, so she doesn’t think the baby is taking her crib.

Shoot, I hadn’t even thought about that. We are planning, at this point, to P”G have the new baby in a bassinet in our bedroom at least until the baby is either too big for the bassinet or is sleeping through the night. I figure, that’s not going to happen for at least 4-5 months after birth, which gives me plenty of time to get Baby J. acclimated to a toddler bed.

Still, I’m torn as to what’s the right thing to do for our child. As far as I know, she hasn’t tried to climb out of her crib. In fact, she will stand there and holler for me until I get up and go in there and take her out of the bed, but she hasn’t tried to climb out herself. But, on the other hand, I don’t want to hold her back in terms of development by not providing her with a toddler bed.

So what to do? P”G we have 9 weeks until my due date, and if we’re going to do it now we better do it soon. Do we bite the bullet and get her a toddler bed, or do we leave her in her crib for a little while longer?

Weight in on this great crib debate below!

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8 Responses to The Great Crib Debate

  1. I wouldn’t worry too much about it either way. Now I agree that it’s important to start showing kids how to do things by themselves from an early age, especially toddlers who love to try, but perhaps you might start a Twitter survey on when kids can be relied on to dress themselves.

  2. Due to various family and pragmatic reasons, I was in my cot until 3 1/2. Today I am a fully functioning woman in my late forties with no ‘gaol’ fetishes or fear of open mattresses.
    A pediatrician friend of mine once confided that if it’s not medical and just a matter of deveopment, they know about as much as the parents. In fact they know less because you know your daughter best. If she is happy do what you feel best for her and you.

  3. quietlibrarian says:

    Well, I had no idea you were expecting so besha’ah tova!!
    We moved all our 3 kids into a big bed sometime just before age 2 (have forgotten excaly how old J is) – the first 2 because a baby was coming along, and the last one because I wanted her to room with her sister and get Mr Big Brother some privacy. It was very smooth and it worked for us. No one felt that the baby was sleeping in their crib. I got rid of all bottles before new baby came for the same reason, and if J is particularly attached to a cup, a blanket or whaever, make sure baby’s are totally different.
    NB – a crib is also a good place to put a baby in to play or just be when you are dealing with her big sister, even if it is not their bed yet, and it keeps baby safer from over loving or accidental falling over.

  4. Wow, I’m going through a similar process *right now.* My toddler just turned two, and is still in his crib. We’re moving to a different city in June, so we don’t want to buy more furniture to shlep. However, the baby is four months old, and will have to be in the crib before we move. Also, my toddler just demonstrated to me, two days ago, that he can get out of the crib if he’s determined enough (I was, thankfully, standing right there).

    Right. We decided that we’re going to keep him in the crib with the rail down enough that he won’t fall out, but will be able to get in and out on his own. Then we’re going to put a gate on his door so he won’t be able to roam the apartment at will. We haven’t figured out what to do with the baby yet. I guess I should figure something out – thanks for the motivation and food for thought!!

    • holylandhipstermom says:

      Glad the topic was apropos! Do you have some sort of pack and play that the baby could sleep in until you move? That might work!

      • We totally have a pack’n’play (that where he is right now – in the bassinet insert), but I feel like it’s not so comfy.

        We actually scrapped that plan, and now DS1 is sleeping on a mattress on the floor (college-style). It’s worked really well for the past three nights, B”H. When the baby starts sleeping a little longer through the night, I’ll put him in the crib in the same room. Until then, I’ll keep him in our room.

        I did raise the mattress of the crib, though, and put the baby in there during the day so DS1 can get used to the idea. So far, so good.

  5. Sarah P. says:

    B’sha’ah tovah! We just moved Hila to a regular twin bed AND to a new room since she fell (jumped?) out of her crib and landed head first on the floor (she’s okay). The adjustment is HARD, but I do think that it may be easier now than when there’s another baby around — she’ll have enough to adjust to at that point without the crib/bed dilemma. 9 weeks is probably enough time to get her acclimated.

    But then again…as someone above said, why rock the boat — maybe in 5 months from now, when your new baby is ready for the crib, baby J will have willingly decided that she’s ready for a big girl bed.

    Okay, to conclude: I have no idea. We were forced into the big bed and I am really, really missing that crib. But I do think it came at a good time — due with new baby end of may. We now call H’s old room “the baby’s room” and I think by the time the baby comes along she will have embraced her new bed and new room!

    • holylandhipstermom says:

      B’sha’ah tovah to you too! Thanks for weighing in, I can’t believe Hila is in a big girl bed already! We should really get the girls together again for a play date! Hope you’re feeling good!

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