This past week I was talking to a mom who has toddler twins. The babies are almost 2 years old and she is ready to teach them how to sleep independently through the night.
the big question was, HOW?
How to transition from 24 months of rocking before bed and during the night to teaching her little ones to go to bed on their own and learn proper sleep habits.
Ideally, the best time to teach your little one sleep superpowers is the early stage of life, because your child is just a sponge for new habits and you can set the pace that you want for them to wake up, nap, and sleep. But if your twins are already toddlers, don’t panic because they are still going to learn the new sleep habit easily.
Take our client Anna as an example. Her son Jonah was 19 months old and still waking up 3-4 times per night. Exhausting, right? We started the sleep training process and in just a few days he started making progress. By the end of our time together, as little as 2 weeks, she reported that “nap time and bedtime were just a breeze”.
So, mama, it will work for you and your little ones as well, pinky promise.
But I know what you are also thinking: “Wait a second, I have two little ones!” And yes, that means that you will have to put some extra effort into the process, but hey, you are also going to receive double the reward!
How to sleep train twins…
We have clients who are moms of twins or even moms who are sleep training more than one child at a time. The good news first: it is possible, it will work. Even if now you feel exhausted and skeptical, that’s normal. If you commit to the process it will work and in no time your twins are going to be sleeping through the night and you will have some well-deserved “me time”. You just need to trust the process and stay committed.
Let’s talk about nighttime
If your twins sleep in separate bedrooms, it might seem like an oxymoron because physically, you can’t be in two rooms at once. If you are a single mom or parent maybe you want to try putting them to sleep in the same room for a while until they learn the new skills. Otherwise, you will have to be going back and forth from one room to the other.
To teach your kids the new sleep habits, my first bit of advice would be to start a new routine so your twins know that time to say goodbye for the day is coming. The routine doesn’t have to be anything complicated and should be designed to slow down and send the signal to their bodies that it is time to relax. Some of my favorite ideas are taking a relaxing bath, changing to their cozy pajamas, maybe a bit of milk, reading a story together, and into the crib.
Cutting out old habbits
I’d suggest cutting the old habit of rocking, sharing a bed, falling asleep while feeding, whatever the previous habit was, cut it at once and start implementing the new routine right away. You are probably going to get a bit of pushback from your kids, which is absolutely normal. Maybe you would like to implement a bit of time for cuddling and hugging but remember, we want for them to go into their cribs while they are fully awake.
If your spouse is home at bedtime, I’d suggest that you both alternate and each of you spend a bit of time with each child at night. This way, the children have to remain in their room, and you and your partner will rotate for the cuddles, reading, and the goodnight routine.
Let’s talk naps…
So, what would happen during nap time, when you are home on your own?
Usually, moms are all by themselves during nap time and don’t have a support system to put their babies in bed. If this is the case for you, we can still get creative and establish a nap routine. And yes, routines are very important and our bodies love them, so don’t be scared to set routines for naptime, bedtime, dinnertime, and basically all times.
For the nap routine, maybe the three of you can get together in a room and sing a few songs, read a story or do a soothing activity that they both love. Again, the idea is to send the signal to the body that nap time is here and we are just getting ready to enjoy it.
If they are going to be napping in separate rooms, you can put each of them in their cribs and just alternate from one room to the other until the new sleep habit kicks in, and after that, it will be a breeze. It might seem hard or even like an impossible task at the beginning, but they usually learn fast as long as you stay committed to the routine and the new habit.
when will we see results?
In my experience, my clients start seeing results just a few days into the new routine, and most of them even on the first night.
As I always tell my clients, discipline on the parents’ side is paramount here. Make sure that you have a support system and have made the firm decision of teaching your children great sleep habits. If that’s the case, I am proud of you, mama, because it might seem hard, but you are setting your little twins up for success by teaching them this life-changing skill.
You are also going to be enjoying the ripple effect of the rewards in no time. Think more “me time”, date night with your spouse, a relaxing bath, reading a book in silence, or maybe a glass of wine. You enjoy yourself, we are not judging over here!
There you have it
Leave a comment below and let me know: are you excited about teaching your twins how to sleep through the night independently? I really hope that you are!
need more help please
If you have read until here and you are feeling like, well this sounds a bit complicated, I’d love to have an experienced Pediatric Sleep Specialist to guide me through this process, then schedule your “Sleep Now Call” and let’s chat!
My team and I have a track record of success helping moms, parents, babies, toddlers, and twins sleeping through the night in as little as 2 weeks. If you want to join the happy, energized moms club, just apply here for a call, and let’s make your and your little ones’ well-being a priority. Reach out mama, we got this together!