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Friday, 1 April 2016

Co-"sleeping": How do you do it?

Co-"sleeping" with a mobile baby: How do you do it?

As those of you who follow me over on Facebook will know, about a month ago, we finally braved it and put the kids in together.

Yes, the toddler and the baby are now officially sharing a bedroom.

This was always the intention; we live in a two bedroom house so it needed to happen eventually. However given that neither of them had been the best at sleeping it seemed like a foolish move to try too soon.

The baby had been taking naps in his cot in the toddler's room for some time and seems to like the space of the big cot bed and so, after a horrific weekend of being woken up every 45 minutes at night, out of sheer desperation I decided we had to try it out on a more permanent basis. It couldn't possibly be worse than the status quo.

Much to my amazement, it has actually worked out remarkably well thus far.

The toddler, unlike me, sleeps soundly through the baby's brief nocturnal moans, shuffles and short cries, and as a huge bonus has stopped complaining loudly about going to bed now that they have bedtime together. She has also stopped waking up frequently in the night and/or waking us up, and the best news is that we generally don't hear from the baby until (very) early in the morning. God bless these thick 1950s house walls.

It has meant that, contrary to all expectations, I have not yet been able to write an utterly hilarious blog post about the misery that is having two children up all night... but this does not displease me.

Feeling a bit cocky perhaps, we got rid of the cot that was in our bedroom

Not just dismantled, but also taken sixty miles away to be put in indefinite storage. The room feels a lot bigger than it has for eight and a half months and I can get out of bed without smashing my hips on furniture so that's a good thing. However it does mean that in the period between 5am and 7ish, when the baby decides he wants to wake up, whinge and then go back to sleep every 15 minutes or so, he has to come back into bed with me.

This diagram more or less explains how our co-sleeping arrangement goes down:

Assuming that a key component of co-sleeping is the sleeping bit, I'm clearly doing it all wrong. As someone who happily co-slept regularly with both of my babies until they were around 4 months and then occasionally after that when they were teething, poorly or wouldn't settle (basically anything for an easy life), I still don't understand how it is achieved on a consistent basis with a mobile baby who appears to have a death wish.

Maybe the co-sleepers among you can tell me where I'm going wrong?!

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  1. Aw bless you! I have tried to do the co-sleeping thing a few times (illness etc like you say). It just does not work for us either! My little one spins around in circles and climbs on top of my head. This is not conducive to sleep! I have occasionally considered climbing into the cot and trying to get a few winks in there...

    Good luck and may the sleep return soon.
    Dawn x

    1. I think parent sized cots are going to be my Dragon's Den idea - don't steal it!

  2. Haha! Glad it's working out better. I love your diagram. When I co-sleep with my daughter (rare these days just because it's so impractical that I would rather just ne up with her) it is EXACTLY like that! Realised I didn't like your fb page yet and so like with my personal account too. Hope the good nights continue #bigpinklink

    1. Thank you so much.

      Sadly, we have succumbed to illness. I knew I had jinxed it! Last night he slept on my head from 2am.


  3. I LOVE the diagram!! That makes up for the post you have been as yet unable to write!! I also love the wide eyed expression on your sons face in his photos-he is just too cute!! Unfortunately, I have nothing to offer on co-sleeping. I did it for 6 weeks with my first, when he refused to be put down, but I couldn't sleep because I couldn't get comfy with him in the bed! And we soon realised that swaddling tricked him into being put down, and he started sleeping in his basket. The second wouldn't entertain sleeping in our bed!! He went into a cot at 2 weeks because he just wanted to spread eagle, and he hated our bed, and the basket, and slept really well in the cot! Even now if I offer for them to come into our bed, when they're ill etc, they both refuse, which makes me sad, because I'd like them to do it occasionally...! I hope the room sharing continues to be a success for you!
    Thanks for sharing with #bigpinklink!

    1. Aye, he's definitely cute. They make the non sleeping ones extra cute so you keep them.

      My first would not sleep with us past 4 months and will only now (at two) if she's ill but much prefers her own space. All children are so different...

  4. Oh this is fantastic news...in the main! I'm glad the move to a shared room went well. Hmm the bed sharing thing though, no I can't help you...we haven't mastered it. I sleep terribly with a baby...now toddler in my bed/on my head. We have a mattress on the floor for middle of the night visits and after a quick bed cuddle he gets deposited on that but that doesn't really help your query I'm afraid! Lucy at occupation:(m)other #bigpinklink

    1. His absolute favourite position is on top of my head. It's extremely uncomfortable. One day, he might sleep in his own cost until such amazing times as 6.30 am... I can but dream!

  5. Ah yes I can definitely relate to that picture! I'm not quite sure how co-sleeping works for us with two mobile children - it just does somehow. Maybe it's because once they're mobile, they get put in the middle and hubby and I provide a fairly good barrier to stop them escaping. That's not to say we haven't had them fall out of the bed once or twice though. The bedside table out of use and pillow fortress is definitely part of our set-up too! Glad to hear that all is going well with the baby and the toddler sharing a bedroom :-)

    1. Thank you! Ah it's great isn't it. On occasion I have the two in (but usually when the bigger one is ill. She isn't a sharer naturally) and my god that's hard work!


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