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Should I move my daughter to a big bed before or after my next baby is born? Lock Rss

Hi Mums,

I am hoping someone out there can give me some ideas on this. I have a very active almost 16 month old daughter and I am currently 22 weeks pregnant. This means my daughter will be 19 months old when my next baby is born.

I am of two minds as to whether to move her to a big bed in the next few months leading up to the baby's birth or wait till after. I have the opportunity to use a port-a-cot for the new born for the first couple of months if I need to.

My daughter is a good sleeper MOST of the time, but can be restless in her cot some nights banging against the bars. I wonder if she would stay in a big bed or just fall out.

There are obviously a lot of changes on the way for my little girl and I am just not sure what order to do things with her. She has no idea there is a baby on the way, we have told her and continue to tell her about the baby, but she just seems too young to understand.

Please help...

Michelle smile
Hi Michelle,

Big decision, and best of luck with the outcome!

If you feel that Maddy is in a good sleeping routine, then go for it! Just follow all your usual bedtime routines. I read a great tip here on Huggies about putting the bed mattress on the floor first, before the bed! They can't fall out and hurt themselves, but get use to the idea of the big mattress and no cot bars!

My main advice would have to be that, if you make the decision to put her in a big bed, then don't back down! It may take a few nights of problems, but she will soon fall back into the routine of normal sleep!

You are fortunate that she is still young enough to have a choice! If she stays in the cot, she will not be too old yet and you have plenty of time to work that out after the bub is born.

Best wishes either way,


DD5, DS3, DS lost to SIDS at 6mths & DD6m

If i could just add that if you do make the move to a big bed, to do it before the new baby arrives. Being a toddler,she will not be able to vocalise her feelings about this and she may see the baby as taking her cot/bed away from her and cause resentment.
You could also make it a special day and involve her if and when you go shopping for the big bed.
Good luck

Vic, 2 girls - 9 yo & 17mth old

I will have the same sort of dilemma in about 6 months. I'm planning to move my son who will be 21 months to a big bed just before the baby is born. A hint I got from someone is to have it against the wall and prop the mattress up slightly with a few pillows underneath so that if they tend to roll then they will roll towards the wall. But I also plan to lay down some kind of mattress on the floor too in case he does fall off.

Kristina, Mum of James 3yrs & Matilda 14 months

Hello to all the mum's who have replied,

Thankyou for your advice and suggestions. I am still undecided of what I will do, but have taken all your comments on board.

I have just under 17 weeks till my baby boy is due, hopefully I will have it all sorted by then...


Michelle smile
I have the same problem, but have had to decide to leave the bed change until later. My son is still convinced the best way to get down off anything high is head first. Until he is reliably gettting off the right way, I'm stuck with the cot. Luckily I still have his bassinet so we should be ok for the first 4 months or so, at that point George will be 22 months old, so should be ready for the change (I hope!)
Best of luck for your changes.

Rachelle, NZ, son George 10.12.02, Ian 15.06.04

Hi Michelle and Rachel,

This was the old forum i was talking about...

It has some great ideas in the second last post, i think anyway,


DD5, DS3, DS lost to SIDS at 6mths & DD6m

Hi sable,

I am tending to agree with you. At first I was in a mad panic thinking I will have to do all these things before this next baby is born...

Now I am inclined to just relax and go with the flow.

I don't want to rush my daughter into a big bed and have all sorts of trouble while I am heavily pregnant... I am starting to have trouble sleeping now as it is and I am only 23 weeks pregnant :~

I wish you all the best with your second bub too. My daughter will be 19 months when her brother is born... if I can get through the first couple of months with her in the cot, I think I will be the better for it.

Thanks for your reply smile


Hi Michelle

If you are worried that your daughter will fall out of a bed, try a bed rail.

My daughter moved into a bed just before her second birthday and I bought a bed rail and she has never fallen out.

She is now 3 1/2 and still has the rail on as she flips all over the place.

You can buy bedrails from baby stores.

Good luck

Jodie, Qld. Madison (09/09/00), Ashton (22/01/04)

Michelle and other mums in the same situation:

I moved my little one to a big bed at 18 months. My daughter was 3 months and needed to move from the bassinet.

I bought a cheap mattress to go on the floor, part under his bed - so if he fell he'd land on the mattress. (just make sure the bed you get doesn't have hard sides) He ended up sleeping on the mattress on the floor most nights, but eventually after putting him in his big bed for every sleep he got the hang of it and in a couple of months was sleeping in his big bed all the time.

For us it worked ok leaving the move until the baby needed the cot, they are young enough not to be protective of "their cot".

Now we use the matress for sleep overs!

Hope this helps with your decision.


I moved my daughter to a big bed when she was 23 months old, and 3 months before her sister was born. She had always been a good sleeper, and it worked great for the first 6 weeks. Then she worked out that she could actually get out of bed herself if she wanted to. It was a nightmare being 36 weeks pregnant, and being up at midnight trying to get a toddler to stay in her bed long enough to go to sleep.

My baby is now 3 months old, and I'm finding that a lot of the time I am up during the night putting the toddler back to bed, more than I am feeding the new baby, but between the 2 of them it is really exhausting. Things are getting a lot better, but we are still needing to return the toddler to bed 2 to 3 times every night.

If you have the option I'd say leave them in a cot as long as possible.

We were concerned about the toddler falling out of bed, so have bought a trundle bed, which is down on the floor at the moment, with a bed rail at the side. We figure that she can get used to the bed and bed rail down low, but when we think she is ready we can put her in the big bed, and she will be used to the bed rail. She has fallen out of bed a couple of times - generally over the foot of the bed.

Good luck with whatever you decide.

mum to 2 girls

we took the easy option and bought a 2nd cot as we didnt want to disturb our sons good sleeping habits

mum of 3 boys aged 11, 13 and 14

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