with my dd i had to sit in with her for a while, but gradually over time sat further away from her bed. She's been in a toddler bed since 18 months, and would cry and follow us out of the room. So our settling technique generally starts off with me reading to her, then singing to her (of course I understand not everyone sings, but if you do, it might help). I used to sit next to her bed but facing away from her just enough that i could see her out of the corner of my eye to see if her eyes were closed. Over a few weeks, i gradually moved my sitting spot to be further away from the bed each night, sat in the middle of the room for a few nights, then stood in the doorway for a few nights, then waited in the passage for her to fall asleep, then out into the main parts of the house. Now I can just put her in bed and walk off and most times she goes to sleep, with the odd exception where she is naughty and hops up multiple times, but this is an exception rather than the norm. She is always far worse after a holiday or visit from relatives, and it usually takes about a week to get her back into routine.
We too went through the same thing at a similar age.
I know your not a fan if controlled crying but in the end it was all we could do. We found the crying would start to subside but once we went in there the screaming was renewed when we left.
I just waited outside for a minute then went in and patted and shhhh in a stern voice. I would say 'mummies here, daddies here, everything's ok' I went out and waited at his door for a two minutes and did the same thing. No eye contact no hugs ( which was torture as his little arms were out)
By 3 minutes he had generally gone...this went on for about 3 weeks then it stopped never to return again thank goodness.
Well after she went down so nicely last night, she woke up as we were going to bed! I ended up taking my pillow into her room with me - big mistake! I fell asleep all night & only woke when my alarm went off to go to work! Not what I had in mind but at least I slept I guess.
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