Co-sleeping is apparently the only way forward....

(39 Posts)
Dollybird86 Thu 01-Aug-13 21:59:47

Hi I dont know if im putting this in the right place but here we go...

Im currently 28weeks pregnant with PFB and 2 particular family members keep insisting that I should just except that co-sleeping is the only way in the early months and that having no routine is the easiest way to do things.
1 of these people in particular is very much an easy road kind of person when it comes to everything especially her kids and alot of her parenting methods arent for me. (There is no way of me telling her this without sounding rude) I would much rather have a routine and it be difficult in the first few months than end up with a child that will not sleep by themselves this is pretty much mine and my dh main fear!
I saw her yesterday and she seemed very happy to tell me about someone we both know who is very much struggling with new parenthood despite being super organised and a nanny!who is now ff and co-sleeping but shes had to go back to work so very understandable.
All im looking for really is someone to tell me if routine has worked for them and that its worth not just going with what's easy.
Thanks for reading

Sunnysummer Sat 03-Aug-13 03:36:56

Like people say, it will end up being a what works for you and for your baby.

There is no 'easy road'. As the replies above show, for some babies cosleeping means more sleep, for some less, for some babies routine is a saviour, while you'll also meet mothers and babies who are exhausted to the point of PND by week 12 from trying to make a routine work with a baby who just isn't ready.

One of the midwives in hospital said that the best advice she could give was to do whatever it takes to keep you safe and sane for the first 12 weeks, there's time to change things afterwards if you need. Another thing I liked was never take absolute answers from anyone who has had only one baby - so often people will think they have 'the solution', but then have a second or third baby and realise that this baby requires a totally different approach!

In the meantime, hope you are able to get some rest, and to try not to be too hard on yourself or your friends about parenting styles until your baby arrives and you find out what works for you smile

shufflehopstep Sat 03-Aug-13 02:32:34

My opinion, for what it's worth, on routine is do what works for you. If you cope better with, do that, if you don't, don't. I would have been stressed if things were too regimented as living with a newborn regularly means routine goes out the window, and I'd feel I was trying to catch up for the rest of the day. I'm much more a go with the flow kind of person and it worked fine for DD and me. Now she's a toddler and I'm back at work, it's different and there's more structure to the day.

Learn to smile and nod at the long line of people who feel the need to offer unsolicited advice and just go your own way.

Seenenoughtoknow Sat 03-Aug-13 02:18:24

Or as Noblegiraffe says - whichever choice is made for you by the personality of your DC! (very true)
There are pro's and con's with any way you do it, just focus on the pro's and enjoy them if you can. Best of luck.

Seenenoughtoknow Sat 03-Aug-13 02:14:51

We co-sleep, and I still bf and my nearly two year old wakes up lots in the night to feed (totally unnecessary!) and cuddle, and has no real sleep routine, but the lack of sleep doesn't bother me, and I love the closeness.
I have one or two friends who have done the same and are happy with the situation.

I also have friends who have their DC's in fabulous routines, early bedtimes etc etc and they are perfectly happy too.

You can start one way and still go down the other route later, or the other way around. There are no rules, just try to enjoy the benefits of whichever choice you make.

LadyLech Sat 03-Aug-13 01:54:10

Agree - do what works with your DC.

I tried co sleeping with my DD1, but I found it actually increased the amount of times she woke in the night (it was almost like she could smell my milk, and so cried for it constantly). I ended up so knackered that I actually rolled on top of her in my sleep. This is despite her being exclusively breast fed.

I moved her out of my bed, stopped offering her milk in the middle of the night, and she stopped waking after that (she was about 6 months at the time). For us, it was the worst thing that happened, and I dread to think what would have happened if I had completely covered her. Thankfully, I was only partially on top of her, she screamed and I woke up. I never co slept again after that.

noblegiraffe Fri 02-Aug-13 23:07:13

DC1 was a fucking nightmare, sleep, any sleep was a bonus, so we co slept safely in the end because I was simply falling asleep with him in my arms as he fed in the night through sheer exhaustion. We didn't have a strict routine, but if he had been awake for 90 minutes (later 2 hours) I went into 'get DS to sleep' mode, which required full on violent rocking. He was a sleep fighter, and rather than 'self settling' or simply falling asleep when tired, he would get more and more irate and wound up until he was unbearable. Forcing him to sleep even before he seemed tired was the only way forward. Routines and books didn't help, because they didn't seem to account for a baby who threw up every time you lay him down.

Anyway, DC2 is great. I haven't needed to cosleep with her (6 months) and unless things change drastically, I can't see it happening. She is a completely different baby. If I'd had her first, I'd have been smug about my parenting and how you should simply leave them in their cot and they'd go to sleep. First time she did it, I simply didn't believe it because it was so different to DC1.

If your baby is like DC1, then all the routines in the world won't help. So wait to meet your baby, and be prepared to throw the books out of the window if necessary, and do what you need to do.

SunnyIntervals Fri 02-Aug-13 22:53:35
SunnyIntervals Fri 02-Aug-13 22:53:14

Cosleeping is incredibly common - the Isis Uni of Durham research project fiend 50% of all uk babies had co slept by 3 months.

I think we all need to focus on what's important, which is your baby's well being. When yours arrives you will know them best and can make decisions based on what you think they are like.

I co slept and bf on demand and mine slept through by 8 weeks, as it happens, so not having a set routine does not mean your baby won't develop good sleep habits - there is loads of evidence based info on the Isis website.

Shiraztastic Fri 02-Aug-13 22:46:01

Do what works for you.

Before I had a baby. Of my own I wanted a routine, had no intention of letting a baby manipulate me, thought a bit of exercising their lungs did them no harm and would never ever ever consider bed sharing.

4 dcs later, how I laugh at my stupid naive judgemental pregnant self.

Whatever books you've red or ideas you have, you can bet our baby won't come out exactly as predicted.

Make sure you save this post so you can look back on your baby's first birthday and see whether your opinions have changed... wink

rowtunda Fri 02-Aug-13 22:42:09

Yep the best piece of advise I was given was when you decide what you are going to do just be consistent.

DrDolittle Fri 02-Aug-13 22:38:45

Routine worked with both kids (DD now 8 and DS now 3). We didn't co-sleep much (only occasionally when they needed it), but I guess every child is different. See how it goes with yours, after you meet him/her and get to know what makes your DC tick.

AmandaPandtheTantrumofDoom Fri 02-Aug-13 22:32:58

Lala - I'm glad it worked for you. But it worked for you because you were consistent with it AND because it suited you, suited the personality of your baby and suited the way you wanted to parent. It wasn't just consistency.

Lala29 Fri 02-Aug-13 22:20:12

My DD slept very well in her bouncer or pram for daytime naps since pretty much the beginning (maybe after a couple of weeks). We always tried to follow the books, put her down awake and not cuddle her to sleep. Worked perfectly, as we were consistent with it and did it from the word go. It also worked perfectly well for my only other mum friend I know, who also followed a strict routine.

It meant at night, husband and I divided the night, so he did first half (and bottle fed expressed milk for dream feed) and I did second half without baby in room disturbing the other. I could then go to bed at 9pm and have at least 4/5 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Same with him.

waterrat Fri 02-Aug-13 21:22:35

If your baby is screaming at 4 am and you have not had more than a few hours sleep each night for months on end - you may well want to bring that baby in to your bed and the relief you will feel as they fall asleep next to you is indescribable !

I hope your baby sleeps well - but routines are not easy to establish with all babies - most babies in te early months want your body heat and your heartbeat next to them - I don't know any babies who obediently slept in their Moses basket for daytime naps in the first weeks! Most prefer to be in your arms

Please don't fixate yourself on one way and a routine - all children find a rhythm as they grow - we co slept and then moved easily to cot sleeping - it's not a big deal, go with what they need at the time

Even if it takes some work to transition to own cot/ routine etc later on - that's no more work than you would have put in at the beginning

I think you should relax a bit - you do sound judgemental - your friend just wants you to know what worked for her

cpic Fri 02-Aug-13 18:05:27

I have bought the troll bedside crib from ebay so baby can be right next to me for night bfs. we have been lent a moses that he will probably nap in downstairs for the first few weeks then I hope to establish naps in the crib too, when we are at home. I reckon openmindedness is the key though, not going to beat myself up if it goes another way. smile

MrsHoarder Fri 02-Aug-13 17:41:30

I would say its worth knowing cosleeping guidelines and being prepared to do it if its something you aren't dead set against.

Then you can have light blankets clean and folded near the bed so if you decide to go for it you don't need your duvet, know about not drinking etc. But if its something you will only do if its really tough you don't want to be researching and hunting for bedding whilst at breaking point.

milk Fri 02-Aug-13 17:36:37

Moses basket at the side of the bed worked for both of my children smile

badguider Fri 02-Aug-13 17:35:25

Co-sleeping actually in our bed wont' work for dh and I no matter what the lo wants (due in 5 weeks).
So we've hired a 'sidecar' cot which can be put alongside our bed level with us so it's almost like co-sleeping, or it can have it's side up up and moved away from our bed (wouldn't put them in their own room at first due to SIDS advice anyway).

My approach so far has been to try to prepare to be flexible (if that isnt' an oxymoron!)... we'll see how well it works in a few weeks smile

Lollypop1983 Fri 02-Aug-13 17:31:32

I always said I would not co-sleep, and my LO would have a routine.

My LO is now 17 weeks. He comes into our bed early morning so we can get a couple of extra hours sleep. We don't really have a routine. U won't know til u meet ur baby. Every baby is different.

Lala29 Fri 02-Aug-13 17:23:43

I had a book called Baby Secrets, as Gina ford scared me when I was pregnant. But to be honest, it's exactly the same thing, just expressed nicer. After a few months I was doing a combination of the 2 books (taking advice as I needed it) and probably did mostly Gina after a bit. I did adapt the routines slightly to suit us (DD needed more sleep than books suggested,) so I just kept her on a routine for a younger baby for a while.

It's not a miracle answer and comes with its own problems (you have to plan your life around a routine, adapt which activities you do, etc). But it was worth it for me, I still managed to do loads of stuff and unlike many of my mum friends, never had to rush home with a screaming baby, because baby was hungry or overtired. And never is not an exaggeration by the way.

It doesn't work for everyone, but ilike my life to be 100% planned out, so it worked for me (and gave me confidence, as I had no idea what I was doing having never really been around babies).

LittleBearPad Fri 02-Aug-13 17:17:00

Regardless of whether you co sleep SIDS guidance is that the baby should be in your room until 6 months. We never co slept but having dd in our room made nightimes a lot easier.

It's very important to remember is that whatever book you read and plan to follow - your baby won't have read it. So be prepared to go with the flow a bit.

rowtunda Fri 02-Aug-13 17:08:11

It really is a cliche but you just can't plan these things. I didn't co sleep and had a very rough routine (baby whisperer EASY routine) I breastfed (and I do sort of think you have to do that on demand) but baby was in own room early & always put in cot for naps - harder in the early days but worth the effort from my pov

I have a friend who cosleeps, babywears and hasno routine. It looks like a bloody nightmare to me as baby can't sleep without her or being held etc. but my friend & her baby are very happy and have there own way of doing things.

Neither way is better I suppose and neither easier - you just do what seems natural to you & your little person.

Dollybird86 Fri 02-Aug-13 16:49:07

Thanks so much all of you I really have no idea what im going to end up with baby wise but im going to try and keep an open mind and see what comes.
Lala 29 did u follow any routine in particular?

Thanks

Whilst it's interesting to think about how you'd like to parent your baby when expecting PFB in many ways you have to wait until they're here and then go with what works best for you all - it's not really a case of taking the easiest path, just the one which works for you !

Lala29 Fri 02-Aug-13 14:06:21

I knew when pregnant that I wanted a routine, baby in own room, etc. People told me I'll change my mind. Dd was in own room from day 2 and we followed a very strict routine. Yes, it didn't work immediately and required effort on both our parts. But she slept 11-7 from around 8 weeks (she was breastfed).
Co-sleeping and on demand feeding are not an inevitability. However, plenty if people object to strict routines and were very vocal with me about it. Frankly, I had the last laugh as I had a happy baby, who was fed and slept before she knew she wanted to, so barely ever cried (no need!) and husband and I were happy and well rested and enjoyed quality time.

Not for everyone, but if that's what you want, do it and screw others who think they know better.

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