Since talking to many Mums and Dads, we’ve discovered that quite often, only one parent handles the baby’s bedtime routine. However, we believe that shared duties can make for easier bedtimes (and happier Mums and Dads!). A child who will only fall asleep if Mum tucks him in with his baby comforter or only sit for a story if Dad reads it is likely to become upset when circumstances demand a change of routine. Parents who share the workload are also more likely to be less stressed, less tired and more engaged in the special one-to-one time that bedtime brings.
In light of this, here are our top three tips on creating a strong bedtime partnership:
1: Get Involved Together
Talking to each other about bedtime is the first step in building a strong team. Make sure you are both aware of all the vital bedtime information such as the time your baby has a bath, how many stories you’ll read or your toddler’s favourite pair of PJs. To be a team and to provide a smooth and consistent routine, you both need to be clued-up on the bedtime dos and don’ts. This kind of open communication is also likely to spark new bedtime ideas between you both, that you wouldn’t have necessarily thought of by yourselves.
2: Be a Tag Team
Instead of alternating the nights on which you and your partner put your baby to bed, consider taking the tag team approach. Maybe your partner could be in charge of bath time and story time and you could take over to put your baby to bed. Your baby will love getting so much undivided attention from the two of you and it’s a great way to subtly change an existing routine if your baby is used to only one parent dealing with bedtime.
3: Build Confidence
It’s totally understandable that the parent who’s used to handling the bedtime routine is going to be more confident than the parent who’s never done it before! You can help your partner to become more confident with the new duties by allowing them to do things in his/ her way, within reason to your agreed routine. (Getting annoyed with your partner because he/ she does the wrong tiger voice in the bedtime story is only going to knock their confidence and make the process stressful!).
Also, try to resist the urge to “rescue” your baby because you think you can console them more quickly or do a “better job” at getting them to sleep. Go downstairs, do something else and let your partner follow through with his/ her share of the work. This will encourage confidence in both your partner and your baby – and eventually allow you to relax too!
Ensuring that your family achieves good quality sleep is a majorly important part of parenthood. You can read how our happy clients have overcome their babies’ sleeping issues here with the help of our award winning Sleepytot baby comforter.