When your child won’t sleep away from home, it can make life difficult – and if you’re staying in a hotel or as a guest in someone’s home, it can make life difficult not just for you and your child but for all the people around you too. Kids aren’t much different from adults when it comes to wanting the creature comforts of home. Don’t you sleep better in your own bed with your own perfectly scrunched pillow?
If your child won’t sleep away from home, try to minimize his stress with these tips:
Bring a special blanket, pillow, or stuffed animal
Yes, we’ve actually gotten 30 or 40 miles away from home and realized that we didn’t have the necessary comforts of home and turned around to get them. Our oldest daughter had to have a pillow case; her twin brother still travels with a nearly worn-through stuffed animal. Once we lost our youngest daughter’s blanket while walking around in downtown Portland. We promptly located the nearest department store and replaced it with an identical version (even still, we think she could tell!)
Let your child stay up a little later to get sleepy
Traveling and being in a new environment can be overstimulating; that alone can make it difficult to get your child to sleep away from home. Allowing a little flexibility in the bed time can sometimes help.
Stick with routines
As difficult as it might be, try to stick with routines to help your child wind down. Read a story, brush teeth, cuddle together – whatever you would normally do to help your child settle for bed. Try some breathing techniques to help calm your child. If your child won’t sleep away from home even with these efforts, treat it as an opportunity to show unconditional love and grab some extra bonding time together!