co sleeping

Heidi - posted on 07/13/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )




Our 21 month old son started waking during the night and coming into our room a few months ago. We took the side off his cot as getting him to sleep in his own bed was a big problem, as soon as he'd feel the dropping motion he would wake up and he would'nt settle himself without being cuddled again. Yes I'm one of those mums who can't just leave the room and let my baby cry and cry and cry even though that's what people say we should have done. Now he will go to sleep in his room and if he wakes before we go to bed I go in and settle him back to sleep just sitting next to his bed. But he always wakes around 1-2am and makes his way down into our room to sleep in our bed. I don't mind when he just sleeps but sometimes he has really restless nights and kicks alot. I tried for 1 week putting him back to his own bed everynight when he came down but it did'nt make any difference as soon as I stopped. I think it is a natural thing for kids to want to sleep with their parents (myself and my brother both did it to ours) my mother in law says it's not normal. What do you other mums think?


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Kelly - posted on 07/14/2010




I am not a fan of it. However if you are then you need to deal with all the behaviors that go with it. Walking them back in the night and/or restless sleeping and reduced intimacy with your husband and deciding when you think they are too old to have free reign in your room and then fighting that battle when it happens. I prefer to teach them early on and everyone gets a good nights sleep and kids develop the skills needed to sleep on their own and roll oveer and go back to sleep at night when they wake up. Mine get plenty of nurturing in the day. Nighttime is for sleeping. What is wrong is to say no to your bed and then cave. (not saying that is happening in your case) That just sets up a pattern of poor parenting and you will never win the battles because it will reinforce temper tantrums. Then everyone is miserable.

Heidi - posted on 07/14/2010




Thanks for your responses, I think I will have to try either putting him back to bed for more than a week which is very tiring or bringing his matress into our room. i know he's not going to like either of them and I actually like cuddling with him when we sleep so I guess it's a half hearted effort on my part but it's those restless nights that are a pain and my hubby gets annoyed as he has to get up at 6am for work. Also worried he might not be out of this habbit by the time we have another baby. Maybe we should just get a king size bed lol

Geralyn - posted on 07/13/2010




Heidi, I personally think that it is a phase that he will move past. From what you wrote, he has not been a co-sleeper til just about 18 months, which makes sense to me developmentally. When children reach about that age, they are getting more and more exploratory with the world around them and becoming independent, but they may experience some periods of separation anxiety or need for "reconnecting" with mom or dad for security.

Co-sleeping can include sleeping on a separate mattress in your room. I am not sure what he is sleeping in now in his own room, but perhaps you could put a mattress in your room for him to sleep on as an alternative to sleeping in your bed? That may give him the comfort that he is needing right now while allowing you to have space without restlessness. Otherwise, if he ends up in your bed through this phase, he will transition back once thise phase has passed. I do not believe in any of the crying it out methods, and I do not believe that it is harmful to meet your child's needs at this time. For whatever he is experiencing, he needs to be closer to you at this time. I say go with your instincts....

I have co-slept with my son since he came home from the hospital, and he is now 27 months. He is a great sleeper and has been for a very long time. We love our family bed, and he knows nothing different - all of us sleeping together is completely natural to him. We are expecting another very soon, and our family bed will remain our family bed. I couldn't imagine him transitioning out to his own separate room just as the baby arrives. I do not want him to feel that he is being displaced, as he will always be my baby boy, no matter how big he gets. He will transition out when he is ready, and when that day comes, he will be made to feel very special about it - a "big boy" transition. I just wanted you to know our experience with co-sleeping, because to me and my hubby, its the most natural thing in the world. We love it, and it works for us.

Kelina - posted on 07/13/2010




I think it's normal to an extent. When he has a bad dream or if he is scared of something like thunder or soemthing like that, that was when I would crawl into my mom's bed and when i'll allow my son to crawl into ours(when he's older, right now he's only 17 months) I think you should continue putting him back in his own bed, and let him know he has to sleep there. He'll get used to it and eventually he'll start sleeping longer and longer. It takes something like 3 weeks to form a habit. Eventually he'll jsut roll over and go back to sleep unless something is wrong. I'm going to use the analogy of a dog for this, but no i don't think of children as dogs, lol. it's like letting a puppy sleep in your bed, eventually that puppy is going to get big and take up more of your bed. With your son it's going to take so long you won't really notice until one day you relaize you've got about 3 inches of bed to sleep on! Good luck!

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I think it is a natural thing for them to want to sleep with you, but I totally understand having a kid that is difficult to sleep with. When my daughter went through this phase (which was at a transitional stage in our lives) I put her bed in our (Mine and my husband's) room. I then pushed the beds together. She got to "sleep with us," and we got to sleep without her. See what I mean? She is very difficult to sleep with as well. She smacks and kicks and on occasion headbutts. After a a few weeks she was sleeping soundly at night and we put her bed back into her room. She didn't like the idea at first but eventually resigned herself to it. She still sleeps with us on occasion, but for the most part sleeps in her own bed.

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