Simple answer here is: You are FORCED to make the trasition!
We transitioned Holden early here's why...
Actual reasons why you should decide to transition...
Holden was 14 months old when we started the toddler bed transition because I had heard many times in our ECFE (Early Childhood Family Education) classes that regression in many respects is common with the welcoming of new babies. We would welcome Gretta (#2) when Holden was only 22 months old so I felt like I needed that "time" so regression wouldn't happen. I had already bought a toddler bed on deep discount while I was pregnant with Holden (cheap ass, I know). The Dream On Me Classic Toddler Bed in White is very close to what we started with.
We made this experience EXCITING. First, we set it up in the living room and left it there for a few days. This may have been because I had to order a fitted sheet (don't waste your money on a sheet set!), but it worked out because he was able to play on it, have movie night, and sniff it out like a dog with a foreign object added to the home. Honestly, we may have made this thing too exciting because... well, you'll find out later. A few days later we moved the bed into his room.
A great recommendation is, if possible, put the toddler bed in the same place the crib was in this will help with familiarity of the space. First thing you need to consider once the bed is in place, SAFETY! If they can touch it, they will. Make that room so unappealing no one would want to be in that sucker! Eliminating the fight will make things easier. Once you think you have made the room so unappealing no one would want to be in the room, go grab a glass and fill it up with wine. Sit in the middle of the room and look around. If you can find something to touch, stick something in (hey, where did you find that to stick in there anyway), something you can pull down then YOU DIDN'T DO YOUR JOB! Now, redo it. Ah, there - now your done.
Here's comes the fun part. It's bedtime. I have read other blogs about making this time exciting. For me personally I do not recommend amping your child before bed in a new place. If you haven't already, start a routine. If you have a routine stick to it as close as possible, but move the end pieces to the bedroom. Do not make this a time you deviate from how you would leave the room. Leave the room as if you were leaving your little in the crib. Make bedtime the same as much as possible. If you have been a jellyfish until now, now is time to get a backbone! If you don't here that little crawl out of bed, CONGRATULATIONS! If you survive a toddler bed transition without a fight - GOLD MAMMA STAR.
Options for leaving the room:
Ultimately, after trying all of these things and not succeeding. We went back to the cry it out. Did Holden kick the door? Yes. Did Holden pound on the door? Yes. Did he scream at the top of his lungs? Yes. Did he cry? Yes. Did I sit outside the door for over an hour the first few nights and cry? Yep. Did he fall asleep next to the door from being exhausted from those episodes? Yep. Guess what? Again, a week later SLEEP for Holden, SLEEP for me... SLEEP!
I am in no way saying our way is the right way, hence offering other options. I believe persistence ends up being the key here whatever your child's personality, ALL kids thrive in a structured environment and enjoy knowing what to expect from their caregiver. Provide them that expectation and watch them grow.