I’ve written this post in response to a question, it’s our experiences and I hope it helps.
This isn’t about D, but T – our as yet undiagnosed but probably on the aspergers end of the spectrum. I say “probably” but you know….etc.
Right from birth, T preferred snuggling in with us. It was a hard habit to break and right up until 5 years old, he was still spending the majority of the night in our room. Not necessary in with us, but on a little cot bed at the end of the bed. He always had a particular song that I had to sing to him too.
D, by complete contrast, was a very independent baby. In her room, in her cot, took a while to settle (hence melatonin from 4.5 years) but she’s always preferred her own space, coupled with a strict adherence to evening routine.
With T, however, it was a battle of wills and accepting that he had a lot of anxieties about sleeping in his own room, inevitably tiredness crept in and sometimes it was easier to just say “okay, come on then”.
What really helped make the transition was getting him actively involved in choosing his bed, his bedding, the decor etc. He chose a bed with a desk underneath as he does like to sit and write out his stats/match reports.
Another thing that really benefited him was – just by his pillow, on the wall – I put Hubbie and my handprints and wrote Mummy and Daddy underneath them. I told him that whenever he felt scared to put his hand on our handprints. He could knock on the connecting wall too if scared – and he did.
He also had anxieties around a wedding photograph that he could see from his bed (he used to say the eyes were watching him) and the streetlights distorted through the bathroom window, so we always make sure the bathroom door is closed.
I would say that the handprints on the wall worked best, no matter how fab his room looked, he still needed that reassurance that we were not far away.
He’s happy now to sit at his desk and do some writing, before he settles. Bathroom door firmly closed and photograph out of sight.
If Hubbie is at a late night meeting/football then he does like to settle in with me, but will sleepily head off when Hubbie is back.
D meantime snoring away and cuddling Bunny…
Very different experiences with both T and D but they are both very individual children, bless them.
Thanks for reading Jx