A few years ago we crossed a major milestone in our house: getting rid of our crib. It made me so sad. We had it as a regular piece of furniture for six years and parting with it made me realize I no longer had babies – I have kids! But, it was a necessary step as my son had just turned three (yes, we held onto it as long as possible), and he was more than ready for a “big boy bed.” The transition was great, albeit we had many talks (a.k.a. threats) that big boys don’t get out of their bed in the middle of the night. And keeping the crib in the room for a while after adding the bed proved good leverage in case he did decide to slink out. He was psyched for the big move and was very good about it overall.
So, when we were ready to cross this step off our parental “To Do” list, we immediately started to plan for what kind of bed would make the most sense. And I have to say, I am still curious as to why parents purchase toddler beds. If you did purchase a toddler bed for your child and you love it, then that is great. But the question I am posing in this blog is why would purchase a toddler bed (which can be a pretty big investment) for something you use for such a short time? I know, I know…to each their own…but I’d still love to know how you came to your decision.
Here’s why. For us, the main reason for not purchasing a toddler bed was budget. The average price for these beds starts at $100 – and most are much, much more. That price is not bad, but the purchase is temporary. In just a few short years our child would have grown out of the toddler bed and need something a little bigger.
Knowing that, we opted to move our children directly into twin beds with a bed rail until they were old enough to ensure they wouldn’t roll out of bed. We also held off on using the box spring for both our children so they are sleeping pretty low to the floor; we just added the box spring to my daughter’s bed when she was six.
Essentially we spent more than the cost of a typical toddler bed, but our thinking was that we wouldn’t have to purchase another bed in a few years. We were actually thinking this one bed is it until they move out for college!
Is that thinking unrealistic? I truly hope not. I spent 15+ years in the same twin bed in my parents’ home growing up. And I was also on the same mattress and box spring all those years. I’ve been told you need to purchase new mattresses and box springs for your beds every FIVE years. To me, that’s unrealistic and a great topic for another blog!
The other reason we opted to go directly to a twin bed is décor. I am the kind of person who likes to finish the look of the room (at least get close) when I buy furniture. When we purchased both of our children’s beds, that meant we immediately had to buy cute comforters, coordinating sheets and pillows, and curtains. If we bought a toddler bed (and in our case, but not our choice, they would most likely be replicas of Lighting McQueen or Barbie Fairytopia), the décor would also need to be updated in a few short years.
Another option I wished I had the opportunity to explore – one that I think is so smart – is the convertible crib! You know – the kind of crib that can turn into a toddler bed? I wish we had one of those, but – again our budget won over desire with that argument. We bought our crib hoping we’d have more than one baby sleep in it – and we weren’t sure what the timing would be. So, to turn it into a toddler bed would only make sense for our last baby.
When it came to toddler beds, for us it wasn’t a viable option. I’m sure our children would have been upset if they knew there were other options versus their boring twin beds. But we did our research, and I still question the necessity of – or desire of – a toddler bed.
For those of you out there who defend your toddler bed purchase, please prove me wrong! Add your comments below!