When my boys were 16 months old, Nate started climbing out of his crib. We thought he would grow out of this phase but every time we put him in the crib, he tried to climb out. The cribs we bought did not have the option to use crib tents, so we made the decision to transition both boys to toddler beds.
If I could do it all over again, I would have bought different cribs that could accommodate crib tents. We have spent the last year trying to get naptime to work in our house on weekends. Until this weekend, our naptime routine was that we put the boys to bed, then I or my husband Jon watch the video monitor and intervene where necessary.
The boys generally play for 30 minutes to an hour, but sometimes they play for 90 minutes. They fight, they sing, they shout, and they generally go crazy in there – fun time with no supervision! It is anything but naptime as they egg each other on. Each naptime is filled with time outs, warnings, and frustration on our end.
We had numerous naptime ups and downs. We had days where we gave up and drove them around in the car until they slept. I emailed every twin mom friend and every twin group to which I have access. I scoured the internet for solutions. And every person told me not to separate them at naptime if we wanted them to sleep together for bedtime.
This weekend, Jon and I decided to break all conventional wisdom. We were tired of spending our weekends as referees for an unknown amount of time. By the time the boys fell asleep, we barely had time to eat lunch before the boys were back up. We decided to split the boys into different rooms at naptime. AND IT WORKED.
We explained to them what we were going to do. We put them down in different rooms and they were both asleep within 10 minutes. Alex was a little sad and wanted me to sleep in Nate’s bed, but I rubbed his back and told him he would be ok by himself. They slept for two hours, their longest nap since the bed transition. At bedtime, they asked if they were going to be in different rooms and when we told them they were sleeping together, they happily talked for 10 minutes then went to sleep.
During this entire year, we thought we were doing the right thing by keeping them together. We kept thinking it was a phase they would outgrow. We were wrong. They simply nap better when they are apart. This experience taught me that there is no one “right” answer for parenting dilemmas and that even the collective wisdom of all the twin moms out there sometimes doesn’t have the right answer for your situation.
What about you? What advice have you gotten that doesn’t work for you?