Co-Sleeping and Why I'd Do it Again

Co-Sleeping and SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) has been in the news once again today but as is often the case the research is all about the risks of suffocating or overheating your baby if they are sleeping in your bed. This is NOT Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Lots of research is being undertaken to try and piece together what exactly happens when a child's body just stops working. Why their heart stops beating. Why they suddenly and sadly are taken from us and with no apparent reason.

Now I have that off my chest I would like to share my experience of Co-Sleeping. As with most things when it comes to parenting you have to make a decision based on your situation, your environment and knowing yourselves. My Husband was not allowed to sleep in the same bed as me and my children. He was more than happy for me to sleep next to our children and was more than understanding when I presented him with the reasons I would not be happy with him staying in bed with us. These were:

  • He is built very large (think a bit like a rugby player!)
  • He is a very heavy sleeper
  • He is overweight
  • He smokes before he comes to bed

This was our situation. I made a call, I was happy with this. Both my babies were healthy and they just liked to be near their Mother. It's a fact that your heartbeat and warmth are incredibly comforting to your baby. I got a lot of joy from this. I am not a heavy sleeper, nor do I smoke or drink. The next step to our Co-sleeping was to look at our environment. I would have a cover and was always warm and comfortable enough and my babies were happy in their sleeping bags.

I did all the important checks you would do when placing your child into their cot or Moses basket (which we did as well) No gaps, no teddies, no pillows, no duvets, baby on their back, no bumpers and all the rest.

Co-Sleeping was an amazing experience for myself as a Mother. It's just something I did and it came naturally. My daughter loved it a lot more than my son who took quite nicely to his Moses basket after the first couple of months.My daughter is looking forward to our holiday in 3 weeks because we'll be in a caravan and she'll be in the same bed as Mummy (she's 5! I still love snuggling in bed with Midge but she's such a bed hogger that her having her own bed is a much better option for us all!)

Did you/ do you Co-Sleep? Did it make you feel better about those few months or did it actually make you more anxious leading you to feel better not doing it? I'd love to hear your views. Here is a good piece of information from the BabyCentre on Co-Sleeping safely.



Unknown said...

I co slept with Hayden & like you I made all the necessary checks & made sure my other half was aware too. I would do the same thing with my next child making sure I follow all the procedures that I did with Hayden.
Great post hun :D

Lotte xo
BericeBaby || Pregnancy, Parenting & Lifestyle Blog

Jean said...

This was very well said. I think the marrow of this argument between co-sleeping and not is knowing your limits and what is possible for your family. You knew your husband would not be safe so you accommodated for that. My first born co-slept because he needed it. My daughter could care less where we are when she's sleeping as long as it's not with her.

Hayley: Sparkles and Stretchmarks said...

I always swore I would never co-sleep after reading so many horror stories about it, but I was surprised to find that it came naturally to me to want to do it and my son seemed to enjoy it too.
He's 8 weeks old now and is slowly starting to prefer his moses basket, but he still likes to sleep next to me for at least an hour or so of a night and I enjoy it.

Sparkles &



The Organised & Nutritious Penguin said...

Both mine were in a bed nest which is attached to the bed so you can easily pull them into bed with you to feed....and put them back. But I always nodded off whilst feeding them and most of the time they stayed in my arms until morning or I got up to use the loo. For me I got more sleep that way and in my opinion a well rested mummy is a better mummy! Of course I didn't do it if I was super tired, and if hubbie went out for a night out I requested that he sleep in the spare room! Guidelines are just guidelines! My daughter also likes to sleep with a muslin across her face....thats another story!

Unknown said...

I had to co sleep, more so with Sam in the early days as it was the only way we could all sleep! Still do it for the odd hour or so in the night when he wakes up as it settles him. I don't really sleep well with him there though as I'm such a light sleeper and always end up in an uncomfortable position where I'm trying to almost protect him from any harm! I feel really bad that James used to sleep on the sofa with Alex a bit as that is so, so bad and unsafe (guilty parents)! Hate that it always gets bad press in this country x

Anonymous said...

I think everyone is different with this subject and I don't think there is a right or wrong because we all do things the best way for our OWN child. I think if your children benefit from it then there isn't anything wrong with it. I personally didn't do it and I don't think I would in the future but that's because for me I was happy enough with Josh in his moses basket next to the bed. I would check him constantly anyway, and having him in bed with me/us at the time, wouldn't have given me any more reassurance than the moses basket did xx

Jessica Reyna Brogan said...

I love co-sleeping with my son. He was a preemie and the first couple of months home were tough. He wanted to nurse every 90 minutes and he was an incredibly slow eater, so he and I would sleep on the couch together (since my husband was working and needed his sleep). The couch made more sense for us at first. I wasn't able to roll over (not that I would've--I was sleeping so lightly anyway), and Jack fit perfectly into the crook of my arm (and not in between the back of the couch and myself--safety first!) He's finally using the co sleeper attached to our bed, and as much as I like being able to toss and turn and actually sleep, I miss snuggling with him. Last night, after his night feeding, he seemed particularly cuddly, and it was so nice to sleep with him in my arms for a change.

Unknown said...

I didn't co-sleep because for me it wasn't right. I would have been scared I would have rolled on it, plus the OH is rugby player built and he is a heavy sleeper too. I also didn't want to get Cameron into a habit that I would then have to get him out of later on.

But that doesn't mean I would judge anyone else for it.

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Hannah said...

Thanks for your comment Jean :) Glad you have such an easy going daughter! My little one went through a mummys bed only phase, very tiring when they're not babies anymore and toddlers who would happily stay awake all night!

Hannah said...

Thanks Hayley. I feel the same, it wasn't actually something I even gave thought to, I just did it one night and it worked so well I never really looked back. We also placed the basket on the bed as well which works just about the same! x

Hannah said...

The bed nest sound lovely and very reassuring and safe when set up correctly, I think i'd like one if I had another just to try something new. I can't say I always got a better nights sleep but I didn't always have a bad sleep either (otherwise i wouldn't be so fond of co-sleeping after all!) Funny you mention the muslin and your daughter, I have a niece who like that! Thanks for your great comment x

Hannah said...

If it's the only they'll sleep then i'd def do it! I think a lot of people eventually resort to co sleeping because they feel they've tried everything else. What ever works for you I say! I've fallen asleep plenty of times on the sofa, i wouldn't recommend it obviously but I won't lie and say it hasn't happend. Newborn and shattered mum, was bound to happen! xx

Hannah said...

Completely agree with you Chloe. For some people, co-sleeping isn't worth the lack of sleep and anxiety.That's when it's not going to work out and it isn't beneficial to anyone! We also had the basket next to or even on the bed sometimes with our baby napping in it and me laying next to it. Both felt fine. I guess I like the morning snuggles without moving lol Thanks for your comment xx

Hannah said...

That must've been hard going for you all, especially with the constant feeding I'm glad co-sleeping helped you both. I miss the snuggles now my 2 are older and in their beds, now and then I get a cuddle in bed...rarely! Thank you for your comment :)

Hannah said...

Thanks laura, it's refreshing to hear someone say it's not for them but go ahead, I won't judge if it works for you. I get the habit thing, it can be hard when the time comes to move into their bed, I won't lie.
Thanks, I will try and look at more blogs this weekend too xx

Hannah said...

Thank you for your comment Lotte. I'm pleased you'd try co-sleeping again, it's great isn't it? I would give it another go too unless baby wasn't happy of course! xx

Kat Sighs said...

Great post Hannah! I love sleeping with my babies, even now. Actually, even more so now as they are getting bigger way too fast.
I asked my husband to stop bringing them to bed as he's a heavy sleeper, big built and wouldnt wake when they cried. We agreed that I would he would wake me to have them if he couldnt settle them.
I must admit I didn't sleep very well when they were little as I was always worried about squashing them but I wouldnt have missed it for the world xx

New Mum Online said...

I have lots of posts showing Aaron in a Gro Bag in his cot, and before that, swaddled for 12 weeks. But that was all in the first 6 months.

He then came into our bed, and he will be 3 in just over 2 weeks and is still there.

Yes he should be in his own room by now, but we are both happy as is.

I love cosleeping and we find it incredibly safe for a whole host of reasons.

It REALLY helped when he had Norovirus a few weeks ago.

Great post btw.

Liska xx