My baby hates his cot


Its a common question I get asked weekly.  

” my baby hates his cot” or “every time I put my baby in his cot he screams” or “why does my baby hate his cot”.

I call it cot acclimation or the process of getting a baby to become familiar with his sleep surface again.

Why does it happen? A couple of reasons-

– a baby is not familiar with the cot as a sleep surface.

– a baby feels “lost” in a larger environment.

– you are moving a baby from one room to another including the cot as a new sleep surface.

-you have been away on holidays and your child has formed a new habit when it comes to going to sleep.

– you have instigated a sleep behavioral method that may not have suited your child’s personality.

So how do I achieve it with my clients?The author, with closed eyes, and cheering baby in cot

We introduce a  baby to the cot in a relaxing, fun, non-threatening way at non-sleep times. This will allow your baby to become acclimated to being in cot with you there so no fears are left behind and your baby does not fear being left alone.

As the parent what are your emotions and behavior in regards to your baby going into the cot? Do you feel anxious, stressed, or like you are “rescuing” your child from the cot each time you put him down?

Our feelings and behavior do influence any given situation when it comes to our bubs.

Has you bub been in any recent separation situations? For example travel, daycare or illness.

What do you as the parent really think your child is expressing? Often parent’s get that their baby is reluctant to fall asleep, but often it is deeper than this. Is the behavior only around bedtime or is it showing up in other areas of the day?

Is it better or worse with you or someone else putting your bub to bed?


Three top tips for cot acclimation:

1. Plenty of play time during the day, in the room, in the cot, with toys, singing songs. Happy, Happy fun times.

2. Play Peek a Boo or a game of hide and seek for the older toddler.

3. Check the environment your baby is coming from to your new environment. Rarely does a child “HATE” anything, rather that the new environment is not familiar.

Work on these emotional well being tips for happy transitioning.

For further help or questions email