• http://stunewsandphotos.blogspot.com/ Stu mark

    Dooce, don’t change a thing about your writing. You give away what I would gladly pay for. You inspire and encourage, simply by being honest and open. That is Art.

  • JenC

    Not that you need any more parenting advice, but the anonymity of the Internet just compels me :)

    We used your strategy with the time out for our 18-month-old and the bed. (We did it with both kids at that age.) It worked like a charm. Scared the crap out of them, if I recall.

  • zitsmom

    If you have room, put a toddler bed with side rail in the same room with the crib, letting all the stuffed animals sleep there. Only if Leta behaves will she be “allowed” to sleep there too. Goals are good :)

  • Lisa

    Heather, I think the key is to get a high bed – that’s what we did for Juliet. She is so excited to climb up into it (quite a feat), and she loves stuffing bunny down in between the bed and the safety bar net side thingy so much that it hasn’t occurred to her to try to get out. Maybe Leta will be just so clueless?

  • http://jaycee.typepad.com/semantics/ Jaycee

    I don’t remember the transition from cot to bed all that traumatic. He would (and sometimes still does) go through stages of coming and telling me trivial things at 5.30am but then other times will just get up and play with his toys.

    And aren’t kids like parrots!!! In the supermarket, the ‘Mummy you did a fart’ thing is quite embarrassing.

  • mamablogs

    Keep her in the crib a few more months and then when you switch her to the bed, use that ole threaten the furry sloth bit.

  • mdstblz

    Phew, for a minute there I thought you had written this; “…an octopus with only three remaining testacles…” tentacles, I mean it only makes sense, everyone knows that octopi have eight testacles, I mean tentacles.

  • http://www.ransom-note-typography.com jon deal

    We knew it was time to move our oldest to a “big person” bed when she climbed out of the crib and up onto her dresser. And then fell asleep there on top of the dresser.

  • http://www.crankmama.wordpress.com CrankMama

    One of the worst days of my life was the day my twins climbed out of their crib. I heard “c’mon Joey” in a stage whisper, 2 loud clunks, and then giggles. Cold sweats ensued…

  • http://valerie.beautifulexchange.org Valerie

    I recall my own mother using “Because I said so” many, many times. Her other favorite was, “That’s what they teach us to do at Mom School.”

  • http://www.ithadtobeyou.net/lifehappens Felicity

    I can’t believe I’m commenting, I’m such a drop in the bucket!

    Maybe Leta would like a cargo bed with the railings. I felt better using one so I didn’t worry about my 2.5 year old falling out during the night, plus I think it felt secure to him as well. We had room to have both his crib and bed in his room, so each night I’d just ask him if he wanted to sleep in his big boy bed with a few of his favorite items and one night he said yes and that was that.

    By the way, I’m a new reader, I’m such a dork I actually read all your archives from your pregnancy on. LOL!

  • http://www.mooseinthekitchen.com moose

    I -still- think “because I said so” is a valid reason. And I’m old enough to use the internet and form somewhat grammatical sentences. That’s how effective parental brainwashing can be.

  • http://www.flummel.com/ee Karan

    We took the mattress and bedding out of the crib, made the same bed on the floor and then bought deadbolt locks for all the outside doors. It was a great transition for both kids and their parents.

  • Jennadog

    Funny you brought this subject up now since I have been thinking about it the past few weeks too. Until my son gave me no choice. He is 25 months and he just broke his wrist last week from falling out of the crib. He had never tried to get out before this day. Seeing your kid in a full arm cast is enough shame to suck it up and do it. He slept in a bed with rails for the first time this weekend and loved it! I put a gate up to keep him in his room.

    Good luck!

  • Angela

    Not that this matters at all in your life, but I have to say it anyways. You are my Favorite person ever. That is all.

  • Sheila

    I was amazed and astounded on this past Sunday when we took the front bars of our two-and-a-half year old twins’ cribs. I too was sure that they would never stay in when they were able to get out. But they didn’t! They asked for a last kiss, standing up as always, and laid down and went to sleep. So far, they haven’t even gotten up in the morning – they still call out for us to fetch them.

    And not only do they bounce, they don’t even wake up! Every night for the past 3 nights they have each fallen once or twice out of bed (onto the pre-prepared pillows and blankets) and just KEEP SLEEPING. It’s hilarious.

  • http://cowjumpmoon.blogspot.com Shalini

    “because I said so” always worked on me as a kid, on my little one, I think she will breathe fire at me if I try that.

  • http://www.q.t_pi@hotmail.com Jezzie

    What I love about the big kid bed is that I can snuggle with my son :) and then go to MY big kid bed…alone! I am tall like you, and I hated hunching over the crib on the nights of exhaustion. Worst comes to worst, I have let him fall asleep and then crawled out to safety :)
    Luv ya Heather, needed your tender, funny insights on life today.

  • tammye72

    I never thought I’d use “BECAUSE I SAID SO” until I had kids. As soon as they hit the “Why?” stage I ended up having to use it. Really, after so many why Mommy, why Mommy, why Mommy, it was either use BECAUSE I SAID SO or go insane.

  • lazydays8401

    My 29-month-old hasn’t slept in a crib since she’s been about a year old. Not that this was my choice – she simply refused to sleep in her crib & has always wanted to sleep in a “big bed.” She doesn’t get out, though she does end up in some weird positions where she almost falls out. We were on a vacation recently & I slept in a queen-size bed with her. I awoke in the middle of the night in a panic because she wasn’t lying next to me only to find her at my feet.

  • http://aunttippy.blogspot.com Tippy

    i always thought it was so cute how my niece amber would climb out of her crib when she was done with her nap, open the door, and come join us like nothing was awry, her hair sticking up all over the place (she’ll be 2 in november) until the day she fell out and smacked her forehead on her dresser, which we’d THOUGHT was quite far enough away, and wound up needing 6 stitches. the crib is a bed now.

    the way they tend to parrot us, in both words and mannerisms amuses me entirely too much. and then amber started dropping food on the floor from her high chair, and stage-whispering for the dog to come get it. then i got in trouble.

  • miss megan

    I’m sure you get plenty of AWESOME child-rearing advice…yeah…so I feel like a jerk

    but (remembering back to my toddler days) I think what my parents did to get me to stay in my big girl bed was act like sleeping in a bed without bars was just the awesomest thing ever. And they showed me how my friend sleeps in a big girl bed and my cousins sleep in big girl beds. But I couldn’t sleep in one unless I stayed in bed.

    I wanted to be like them so I worked hard on staying in bed.

    Oh peer pressure.

  • http://thelongway-ladysilk.blogspot.com AmySilk

    My close friend and her husband started having their 30 month old sleep in a toddler bed about 3 months ago. Emma, the little girl, absolutely loves it. She’s fallen out once so far, but their doctor told them it’s normal and she may do it once or twice more but then the falling out will stop completely. Some subconscience thing. Which makes sense considering we, as grown-ups, rarely fall out of bed for something that does not include incorrectly reading a sex manual. They don’t have a gate at her bedroom, but do at the top of her stairs. When we stayed there she only got out in the morning around 6 when she felt we’d all slept enough. :o )

    Good luck!! Oh and I can’t wait to use “because I said so” along with “Life isn’t fair!”

    Emma and now Leta both make me want to have kids TODAY. … now if I could just find a job to support one AND convince my husband… hmmmm….

  • http://biodtl.diaryland.com biodtl

    I got a t-shirt for Mother’s Day with “Because I Said So” in white glitter. If only it said, “Now Get Me a Drink!” on the bacx!

    And I can’t tell you how it pleases me that someone else punishes their dog by putting the item in question on their head and taking photos. I have tons of photos of my dog with torn-up napkins, stuffed animals, paper plates and Big Mac containers on his head.

  • hornblower

    All this manipulating and controlling – really, it’s just a huge headache for everyone. My kids are 11 & 8, & co-slept with us until ready to move into a bed on their own. We have never done the time-out thing either, though sometimes we might remove a child from a situation and go sit WITH them until things calm down a bit. I find this style of parenting you’re all talking about so exhausting; relax a bit everyone – parenting is not performance art. Though I guess for you Heather, maybe it is. And yeah, my kids are turning out normal – nice, kind & polite; they know better than to leave a snarky comment on your blog. Unlike their mama.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/24392469@N00/ DravenStele

    We bought one of those cribs where you can unscrew one side to make it a bed. My wife has been watching my daughter hang off the side of the bed rails for the last 10 months, asking “Do you think it’s time to take down the side for her?” Heck no.

    When Rhiannon started having night terrors about six months ago, we moved some unused couch cushions into her room next to the crib for one of us to lay down next to her until she quietted down. Those will make wonderful air pillows for her to fall on to if she ever makes it over the wire.

  • http://mochamomma Mocha

    Oft quoted in my home: “Because I said so” is a complete sentence. Subject. Verb.

    So far, so good.

    “One size fits all”, however, is an incomplete sentence. It needed to determine just WHO it fits. Certainly not everyone.

  • Chloe

    I made a bit of a big deal out of the transition – we went shopping for sheets for the bed, accessories, that type of stuff, so it was truly her bed by the time she had to sleep in it – plus the crib disappeared and she had no choice.

  • OneBabyMama

    God, I live in fear for the day I have to put my son into a “big boy bed”!!!
    His best friend who is a month younger (and has a month-old baby sister) FELL out of her crib onto a hardwood floor, necessitating (is that a word?) an ER visit (this kid doesn’t bounce! LOL) so her mom put her into a “big girl” bed. She NEVER leaves it! It’s weird.

    Rowan slept with us for his first 8 months, then moved to his crib when “co-sleeping” started to mean “I am going to jump on your heads, wriggle, and kick you until we’ve all gone insane from lack of sleep” and we’ve been more or less happy ever since.

    So, I think I’m going to keep him in his crib until he’s 18. ;-p

  • http://prozac-mommy.blogspot.com Mack’sMom

    My husband and I are currently going through this maddness! We’ve tried the SUPER NANNY techniques, read books, and tried everything but the duct tape and chicken wire…though it’s been discussed!

    Last week we thought we had finally won…boy were we wrong! She climbed out of her crib and layed on the floor next to the door screaming. She knows how to open the door, so we figured since she wasn’t coming out she was “dealing.” After about 10 minutes my husband broke down and went into her room.

    He found a half naked child…peeing on her carpet! “So who’s the boss now!?!”

  • http://thekilowatthour.blogspot.com kilowatthour

    um, heather? when i was about leta’s age i fell out of my crib and broke my collarbone.

    i’m just sayin’.

  • http://www.chirky.com jes

    Next time, will you have the camera ready? We all want to see Leta putting a biblical cow in timeout.

    Also, unsolicited advice: when you do get a bed for her, just put a mattress on the floor – don’t bother with a support system yet. It may be ghetto, but at least she won’t hurt herself if she falls out.

  • Allison

    Simultaneously genius and hilarious.

  • Wonked

    If you think your kid is going to use logic and transfer “because I said so” rights to you, YOU have been watching too much Elmo.

    - Wonked

  • Trinity

    That’s freaking hilarious!

    Because I said so! Hah! We’ll see how long it lasts, however, because my kids realized real quick that “because I said so” means nothing.

  • http://www.baggermania.com/babyblog/ lisa

    I really wish “because I said so” would work with individuals other than two-year-olds.

  • there’s a run in my pantyhose!

    My son is so weird. He will get in his bed, whether it be nap time or bed time and even if he doesn’t fall asleep for 2 hours, he will not get out. He’ll flail around calling out “Mommy” or yelling because his blanket fell on the floor and he can’t reach it. He just will not get out. But once he goes to sleep, as soon as he wakes up, he’ll get out of bed and come running to wherever I am. I have no idea how it happened that way… we didn’t train him to do it. He’s just a strange duck, I suppose.

  • http://www.alottaerrata.blogspot.com Alotta Errata

    Did you choose two minutes for time out because she is two? I’ve heard that’s the way to figure out how many minutes they can handle, one for each year of life.

    also, and slightly unrelated, I’d love to know how you get that ring effect in your photos, where the edges fade to black a bit.

  • farebear

    I’m de-lurking … finally. I’ve been reading your site for months. You crack me up all the time, and I identify with a lot of the things you say, and identify with a lot of the things you experience (even some of the Mormon stuff, although I am an active Mormon).

    Anyway, once again I laughed out loud in the quiet of my house as my daughter and dogs sleep through their afternoon naps. The description of Chuck and his avoidance of eye contact and shifty body language when presented with evidence of his chewing. It mirrored so closely the scenario with our dogs that I’ve never been able to look at so humorously. I think remembering your account will help me in future to take all their chewing more in stride and with a sense of humor.

    We moved our daughter Piper to a regular twin about a month ago. She is not quite 2, and her dad just got a bug up his butt that it was time. She’s tall, so she wasn’t really fitting in her crib very well and that was part of it. The rest was just whim. Yeah, fun whim. Its gone pretty darn well. we put a little railing along part of the bed so that she won’t roll off without some effort on her part, and have treated bed time exactly the same as we did when it was crib time. I did find her asleep on the floor the morning after the 2nd or 3rd night, sleeping pretty darn well actually. But I think she learned that she’s not very good at getting back up there on her own and now she doesn’t get down, no matter how long it takes her to go to sleep. I’ve been very lucky in that she’s a darn good sleeper … I’m sure it could have been much worse when her dad got this particular bur under his saddle.

    AND, I started using time-outs with Piper a month or so ago. I think I do it wrong … or I’m not very good at picking which battles warrant a time-out. Because it usually turns into me making her sit there for a time limit or until she stops crying, neither of which seem very connected to whatever misconduct she’s performed. I’m not even sure she has known why she’s ended up there every time. I really need to refine my technique. I shouldl probably read something about it, instead of just guessing my way through it like I do most things.

    Wow, when I de-lurk, I DE-lurk in rambling, boring comments. Sorry.

  • TNW

    I used to fling myself out of my crib all the time, so my parents removed the bars and set the crib on the floor. I didn’t dig that either, so I slept on the floor. I have only minor brain damage as a result…

  • mslieder

    Crib tent or razor wire…

  • Lori

    When we put my son into a regular bed, it took a few nights of trying to keep him there, but it wasn’t an exhaustive issue. We also used the bed for timeouts (I know I’m an awful parent), but when he was put into bed for a timeout or for bedtime he never got out without permission. I think he was 7 or 8 before figured out that the wrath of God would not descend if his little toes ventured out on his own! You’re a good mom and approaching everything with humor is the key to your sanity. Enjoy her. They just grow up too darn fast!

  • Melissa
  • http://www.omarphillips.net omar

    My kid is not quite 2 yet, and we’ve started doing little 1 minute timeouts. We still have to do it in his pack & play, as we do not yet have the ability to keep him still without strapping him down or enclosing him in something.

    We’ve had slightly more success with toy timeouts, where we’ll keep the toy he threw and/or hit me with aside for a minute or two. At first, he’d just go find something else to throw and/or hit me with, but now he’s starting to understand a little better that he’s gotta play by the rules in order to keep the good toys around.

  • http://www.adventurejournalist.com tonya | adventure journalist

    “Because I said so” were magic words in our house, they halted all conversation, leaving both kids with expressions of defeat. Until three or four days after Ryan (oldest) turned 15.

    Since then, “because I said so!” is met with merely: “… and?”

  • http://www.theeverydaymom.com Michelle Arnold

    We moved our daughter to a big girl bed a few months ago. Mysteriously she thinks there is an invisible force field that is prohibiting her from getting out of the bed. I think because we pushed it against the wall and have one of those safety rails on the other side, she doesn’t think she can physically get out. I know I should tell her otherwise………but why would I want to do that?

  • http://www.vaguelyurban.com Vaguely Urban

    Jo would be so proud of you. Hell, she probably reads you and actually IS proud of you.

  • http://pandemoniuminmyhead.blogspot.com Pandemonium

    Just chiming in to say we did the crib mattress on the floor for a little while also. Despite the scientific evidence that children bounce, I was just a little unsure about that methodology. We had to move my oldest out of his crib at 18 months because he was climbing over the rails and plummeting to the ground. Seemed that no bouncing was involved. : )

  • bluepaolo

    Oooh. comments.

    My two cents is that you want to get them (Leta) into the big bed now at her age, while the belief that she should do what you tell her to do is at least considered. We did this with our son around 26 months or so and he went along with it pretty well. Now that he is all of three, he is constantly testing limits as a matter of fact – often putting himself in timeout when he knows he’s crossed a line. But he hasn’t wavered from the bed thing, mostly because I think it hasn’t occured to him to challenge it. (pooping in the bathtub is another story…sigh) If we were trying to get him to sleep in a big bed at this age I really think it would be a lot harder. Of course every kid is different – but as you note – you have a stubborn one on your hands and it gets a little worse before it gets better.

  • http://brewerburns.blogspot.com Jennifer

    Congratulations. I’m impressed with how well the discipline is working.