Right. Can we get this straight about co-sleeping?

(66 Posts)
OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:05:25

I've been told twice in the last week not to co-sleep, first by a HV at clinic, then by the GP when I asked her to clarify.

I'm assuming these are government guidelines but have they recently changed?

I co slept with ds1 and ds2 and am now doing so with ds3, who is 8 weeks old. Heck I even had a long quote in the MN book on babies a few years ago, on this very topic <expert> grin but now suddenly I feel rather alone and a bit worried that no one else is doing it, it's all terribly wrong anddangerous and I need to stop now.

I love co sleeping. Ds2 is still in the bed and he's nearly 6. But I wanted to check on here as I've always got the impression from this place that co sleeping is good, and wholesome and best for the baby.

And isn't it the case that babies regulate their breathing better when next to their parent? I'm sure I read this somewhere.

Help sad

Panzee Fri 01-Mar-13 11:22:52

Apologies: I have come on your thread to hijack/ pick up tips about cosleeping. My new son appears to be heading down the cosleeping route. I just can't work out the logistics, so I am watching for tips on how to be safe. smile

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:25:10

Panzee that's absolutely fine smile Welcome.

People do co-sleep. Never fear. However the official advice is that babies should sleep in their own bed in the same room as their parents, afaik. Doesn't mean you have to follow it.

showtunesgirl Fri 01-Mar-13 11:26:50

It totally depends on what country you're in as to whether they think it's bad or good! In many South East Asian countries, it's totally the norm.

Booboostoo Fri 01-Mar-13 11:27:28

As far as I know the main tips for safe co-sleeping are:
- not to drink
- not to take drugs or medication that might make you drowsy
- baby sleeps next to mum and wall, dad sleeps next to mum
- remove duvets, pillows, etc that can cover baby's face
- use a firm mattress so baby can sleep flat without risk of getting wedged anywhere.

whatyoulookinat Fri 01-Mar-13 11:30:33

I did it with all 3 dcs without any problems including a 5lb baby. I'm a light sleeper, don't smoke & didn't drink alcohol while doing it.

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:30:45

Thanks guys. It just seemed like no one was willing to say, yes, do it, when reading some of the research in the past it seemed like the best thing to do.

I hate feeling like some sort of rebel iykwim. I want to be thought of as a decent parent but this sort of thing makes it very hard. I've so far just smiled and nodded but have no real intention of stopping as I think it's safer in some ways.

Loislane78 Fri 01-Mar-13 11:31:18

I did it when v small and now at 6.5 mo if its a bad night.



Loislane78 Fri 01-Mar-13 11:33:15

BTW - Also did it in hospital and none of the MW said anything.

Swaddling was fine and apparently now not, weaning at 4 mo was fine and now not (unless DR's orders), eating x,y,z was out now fine etc. etc.

Do what you think is right I reckon smile

Quenelle Fri 01-Mar-13 11:33:52

When DS was a newborn my HV gave me a leaflet advising on how to do it safely. I don't have it any more and can't find it online unfortunately. Have you tried looking at what's available online from your health authority?

HeadFairy Fri 01-Mar-13 11:35:00

I co slept with dd from birth to 13 months pretty much every night, still do when she's poorly. I followed all the advice re safe co sleeping, and neither dh nor I smoke.

My sister recoils in horror at the thought of sleeping with children but I love it, there's nothing so nice as a soft warm baby next to you to!

CharlandOscar Fri 01-Mar-13 11:35:57

I know loads of people that co sleep. either part time or full time. My little one comes into bed with me about 3/4 in the morning (ebf)
i sleep better without him in the bed as Ive noticed I dont sleep as deeply when he is next to me.
Ive been told its safer for bf babies rather than formula fed due to hormones released when feeding.
I go to a bf group and co sleeping is recommended.
I think its one of the most wonderful things having your baby asleep next to you

HeadFairy Fri 01-Mar-13 11:36:49

lois I did it in hospital too (cs and it was much easier than reaching round to cot, plus dd hated cots of any sort) she slept on my chest until she was 8 weeks old!

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:41:26

Thankyou so much, this is really helping. How on earth do you manage with HVs and so on though. I suppose just try not to mention it? Probably my mistake was asking them if it was Ok. I think I was hoping they would say, yes, wonderful! and we could talk about all the reasons for this.

But no sad

As a fulltime working and bfing mum (went back when DD was 14 weeks) there is no way I could have survived at work if I didn't cosleep. It gave me an excuse for early nights, and precious cuddles with my baby. We are still cosleeping now at 3 because otherwise we wouldn't spend as much time together. I love snuggling with my little girl, and bed times have never been an issue. She goes to bed first at weekends, safe and secure knowing we will be coming up to bed once she's asleep.

ChunkyPickle Fri 01-Mar-13 11:41:46

I co-slept with DS from about 2 months when DP realised it was the only way we'd all get sleep (and that he loved having a little snuffly one in bed with us)

Apart from a brief stint in his own bed (a few months when he was just 2) DS is back in with us again (2.5) - personally I think it's because it's winter and he likes having someone warm to snuggle up to, and since I feel the same way I can hardly blame him.

I plan to co-sleep with our next baby, due September because I need my sleep, our house is cold, and TBH I feel that there is more risk from me/DP stumbling around in the dark with the baby in a moses basket than there is from sleeping with me curled around him/her.

Quite what DS is going to make of it I don't know - thank god we have a kingsize bed.

Lois Can I ask how you coslept in hospital? I was in for a week with DC1 and basically sat up all night every night holding him, as he would scream the place down in his designated plastic box sad The bed seemed too high and narrow for us to sleep next to each other though... probably my biggest fear of having DC2 is a repeat of this hell, so tips on cosleeping in hospital would be fab!
To answer OP, I get frustrated with this too - from what I've read a lot of cosleeping studies confuse safe cosleeping with falling asleep on a sofa, and consequently say its dangerous. You'd think health professionals could use a bit of sense in interpreting the data!

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:43:55

Chunky yes I've been told to put him in a cot or moses basket nearby but honestly, I doubt I'd wake when he did if he wasn't next to me.

I just wouldn't notice the snuffling and wriggling and he'd have to get to the crying stage before I woke. I hate the idea of that.

ChunkyPickle Fri 01-Mar-13 11:44:19

Last time I had a pack and play cot sat in the corner of the room that I bought assuming I'd need it. The HV just assumed that that was where he was sleeping and didn't even question it.

If they had I would have said, and then just nodded and smiled at whatever they said and carried on doing what was working for us.

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:46:17

I wasn't allowed to co sleep with ds1 in hospital - but I did anyway as they threatened to give him a bottle unless he fed. So I just got him in the bed and kept him there and they gave up. I think they were worried about him falling off, fair enough - the side rails are crap and useless.

This time I laid ds3 across the bed, and sat at the end barely moving for about 15 hours till I was allowed home. Just feeding him and so on when necessary. I didn't sleep at all, I couldn't. The plastic boxes are horrible.

ChunkyPickle Fri 01-Mar-13 11:46:35

Outside - I had the opposite problem, with him across the room in a cot all I could do was listen to the snuffles (which kept me awake), or if he wasn't snuffling, strain my ears waiting for his next breath (or get up and put my hand on him to check.. pfb..)

With him next to me I found it easier to drift off into a light sleep which was actually restful.

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:48:05

Yes good point Chunky, I actually thought s I was writing that, I'd probably be too worried to sleep at all if he wasn't with me!

It seems so bonkers that this is frowned on.

aufaniae Fri 01-Mar-13 11:49:57

AFAIK, the professional advice on co-sleeping is based on studies which shows that babies are at more danger from SIDS and death from other causes such as suffocation when sleeping. So they advise us not to do it.

However it's not as simple as that!

The studies are not a comparison of people sleeping with their babies according to the safety rules as compared to babies in cots.

What the studies counts as co-sleeping includes known dangerous practices such as sleeping with a baby on a sofa in the "co-sleeping" group.

This (US) article probably explains it clearer than I can!

" Does Co-sleeping Lead to SIDS?

Does cosleeping really lead to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)? Are pacifiers really a smart way of preventing SIDS? The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) would like you to think so, releasing this fall what other medical experts have called “an ill-advised and ill-informed statement” that simply flies in the face of reason.

Recommendations that advise against parent-infant bed-sharing and support the generic use of pacifiers imply a “truly astounding triumph of ethnocentric assumptions over common sense and medical research,” according to Nancy Wight, M.D., president of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine.

Yet if we review the very same research the AAP used to come to its conclusions, the message is clear: The relative risk of death to infants who sleep in a safe adult bed with a safe parent is not greater than those who sleep next to their parents’ beds – and their risk of death is far smaller than that of infants who sleep in a crib in another room. In fact, for infants over 2 to 3 months of age, the studies show that letting infants sleep in the same bed as their parents in fact protects them from SIDS more effectively than placing them near their bed.

Infants are at risk of suffocation in adult beds, just as they are in cribs. The clear message should be that adult beds need to be made safe, without overly fluffy or heavy bedding, wedging dangers, overheating, siblings (with a very young infant), parents who have consumed drugs or alcohol or parents who smoke. Sofa sleeping is not safe with babies.

Yet the message we get from the AAP is that cosleeping is unsafe – period. While breastfeeding is shown to reduce SIDS, the AAP does not even mention breastfeeding. Instead, the AAP promotes the use of pacifiers – an intervention that can impede breastfeeding and that the AAP recommends without appropriate substantiation.

Safe co-sleeping = healthy co-sleeping

Unfortunately, none of the studies cited by the AAP report bother to derive from their statistics a risk ratio for deaths of babies co-sleeping in a family bed with safe, non-smoking, sober parents who take reasonable efforts to reduce wedging and other suffocation dangers. From the available statistics, full numbers can only be guessed at – but cosleeping in safe conditions is clearly as safe or safer than sleeping in cribs in the same room as parents and far safer than sleeping in cribs in another room. Contradictory to the AAP’s statements, it is clear that limiting safe cosleeping will not reduce SIDS.

How could the facts from these research reports become so confused? It’s important to understand what’s actually meant by the terms used in the research.

The term “adult bed” usually includes dangerous sofas, sofa chairs, make-shift beds and waterbeds, which account for a large portion of the adult-surface deaths. Also, the term doesn’t necessarily mean cosleeping is occurring, only that an infant is sleeping on that particular surface. An infant sleeping alone on an adult bed is at greater risk than when sleeping there with a parent. Failing to understand these points makes appropriate adult bed-sharing mistakenly sound dangerous.

” Bed-sharing/cosleeping” statistics and comments usually lump together cases of infants sleeping with any adult in any state, including over-exhausted, intoxicated adults, smoking adults, other children and even combinations of these. These comments and statistics also generally include dangerous practices such as sofa-sharing. Another limiting factor of these definitions is that they usually include statistics on infants who coslept at any point during the night of their SIDS-related death – not necessarily at the time of death. Conscientious parents are scared away from safe cosleeping by such slanted reporting.

SIDS or suffocation?

Notice that most studies define all unexpected infant deaths as SIDS, while a few pose suspected suffocations as distinct from SIDS. The resulting statistics are quite different. While cosleeping may reduce actual SIDS, suffocation risks are greater for bed-sharing (as great as they used to be for crib-sleeping, before safety standards were taught), when appropriate precautions are not taken.

A few studies look for a new risk association with infant death in bed-sharing: the finding that possibly half of those dying while bed-sharing were not accustomed to bed-sharing – meaning, among other possibilities, that the parents or adults were not experienced in protecting the baby from hazards, that the bed-sharing was impromptu due to overtired or intoxicated parents, or that the baby may have been experiencing extra fussiness for some health reason and was brought to the parental bed for that reason.

What’s behind the figures?

Why do no studies fully compare safe, conscientious cosleeping with other sleep situations? The results would reveal the safety and benefits of the family bed. The numbers in the largest study on cosleeping around the world suggest that safe cosleeping reduces SIDS greatly. Most nations with SIDS rates much lower than the United States regularly practice cosleeping on firm surfaces with low rates of adult smoking. Countries with increased cosleeping frequency also show decreased rates of SIDS.

It’s become obvious in recent years that pharmaceutical companies wield powerful influence over doctors’ prescribing habits. Parents who like to read and investigate are well aware of the strong ties between formula companies and pediatricians’ advisements.

A few years ago, it became apparent who was behind the curious disinformation campaigns about cosleeping. In May 2002, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) released a weakly supported announcement purporting the dangers of cosleeping.

Interestingly, the announcement was sponsored by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) – in other words, the crib industry. The crib industry went further by providing “Safe Sleep” brochures to Toys ‘R Us and other venues, creating a video clip for wide media distribution, and granting continued “education” on the topic to doctors.

Frightening families away from safe, natural cosleeping sells more than more cribs. Research shows that cosleeping supports breastfeeding. Crib sleeping makes breastfeeding less convenient and more difficult; therefore, enforcing crib sleeping sells more formula. Keep following the progression: increased formula feeding means increased illnesses for babies, which means increased pharmaceutical sales.

Despite the 2002 CPSC statement about cosleeping “dangers,” the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) continued to support safe cosleeping. But now, with encouragement from SIDS organizations that are backed by pacifier and formula company funding, the AAP seems to have joined the anti-cosleeping bandwagon – and has begun plugging pacifier use, as well.

The facts speak for themselves

Yet the AAP’s latest announcement is not backed by sound scientific data. Review for yourself the summaries of key points from the largest and most recent studies. A large portion of these come from the AAP’s own journal, Pediatrics. They include all the relevant studies referenced in the AAP’s October 2005 journal announcement or more current reports from the same studies or authors."

The Evidence

The article then goes on to cite and summarise articles published in a range of science / medical journals including the BMJ.

Article lnk here

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 11:56:47

Thankyou for posting that Aufaniae. It's really helpful, I feel better already.

aufaniae Fri 01-Mar-13 12:01:21

"How on earth do you manage with HVs and so on though"

I'm actually looking forward to being frank with the HVs this time!

Last time we had a lovely one in our old town, but when we moved here, we got one visit from a HV when DS was 18 months. She asked me if I was having any trouble. I couldn't think of anything really, but tried to find something to give her so I mentioned that DS was still waking in the night. I'd previously told her that I was still BFing DS to sleep, and she seized on this as the cause, telling me that his tummy must be too full and he's waking up because of it. This really annoyed me as she didn't ask anything else about his sleep. (e.g. what kind of bed does he sleep in, is his room warm enough / dark enough etc, what's his bedtime routine like etc etc). IMO she obviously had a problem with "extended" BFing and seized on the first opportunity to tell me I should stop. I didn't argue I just smiled and nodded and carried on like before!

This time round however I am going to stand my ground and try to get them to talk to me about evidence based stuff. If any medical professional tells me to stop BFing before 2 years without good reason this time they're going to get lots of questions about why they're giving me advice contrary to the WHO guidelines. If they tell me to stop co-sleeping, I'm going to speak to them about the actual studies the advice is based on, and ask if they know what the figures on ^safe& co-sleeping vs not are.

They will probably end up hating me but I don't care, bring it on! Or I'll probably end up having a lovely HV like the one I got at first last time and I'll be slightly disappointed grin

Although, smile, nod and ignore - while doing your own research to find out what the evidence actually is - is probably a more diplomatic approach!

OutsideOverThere Fri 01-Mar-13 12:06:59

Good luck! I did question it with the HV last week and tbh she did say, look, we know some people will carry on co sleeping whatever we say, which is why they give out the safety guidelines too - but she said they HAVE to trot out the govt recommendations as law as that's what they're paid to do and they can get into trouble if they don't.

So maybe smile and nod is all we can really do.

FascinatingNewThing Fri 01-Mar-13 12:10:50

I co slept with dc2 in.hospital. I was only there for one night. They came through to check on us (we had been quieter than anyone else, probably due to the co sleeping tbh!) and he was asleep next to me. I said pleasantly "This works better for us" and they just put the sides up on the bed and left us to it. When seeing health visitors I told them we had made the choice to co sleep and nobody ever questioned it. Neither of us drink or smoke and we followed the guidelines. Also, dc2 sleeps 8-8 , sometimes more, and naps for 2-3 hours, in his own room now at 13 months, so the "rod for your own back".comments would have been nonsense if anyone made them!

Lifeisontheup Fri 01-Mar-13 12:25:49

I was tucked in bed with my second baby in hospital as he was cold and that's the best place to warm a baby up. I hated it, hardly slept and was freezing myself. I tried it when I got home with the same result, baby didn't sleep as much and I was awake a lot more as I only sleep well when muffled up to the eyebrows. He was BF for nine months and slept happily in his crib, co-sleeping isn't for everyone.
I think HV's and GP's advise against it simply because some people only take the bits of the guidelines they want to and do not safely co-sleep then if the worst happens will then say , the GP/HV told me it was ok and didn't mention the risk factors.
I think you should do what suits you and your family and follow the safe co-sleeping rules if that's what you decide to do.

HeadFairy Fri 01-Mar-13 12:32:42

I didn't even mention it to my HV, it was none of her business and she didn't ask.

Loislane78 Fri 01-Mar-13 17:07:51

Re. co-sleeping in hospital, I naively didn't know it was a 'thing' iyswim and that you were/weren't supposed to do it. It was my MW who was helping with latch/feeding early night-time that tucked us up so I guess I was lucky. The bed seemed quite wide and they put the side rails up and that seemed perfectly fine. I was given the NCT feeding magazine and it showed how to feed lying down so I practised that when I got home.

Maybe it depends on your hospital/MW? During labour MW was giving me a foot massage as contractions slowed so they're obviously a bit lentil weave-y round my parts! smile

PoppyWearer Fri 01-Mar-13 17:24:06

Midwife also tucked me up in bed with DC1, although that was back in 2008, which I appreciate is light years ago in terms of guidance etc.

Anyway, I've co-slept with both of mine.

wiganwagonwheelworks Mon 04-Mar-13 10:19:10

we cosleep. Baby sleeps on top of our sheets in a sleeping bag. I don't think I'd have been able to carry on BF-ing much longer if we had not, I went back to work when she was 5 months and she does most of her bf-ing in the night. I've never been asked by an HV about sleeping arrangements.

megandraper Mon 04-Mar-13 10:34:47

I co-slept with all mine - DC1 from about 3 months on, then DC2 and DC3 from birth. With DC3, the midwives in the hospital didn't like it, but we were only there for part of one night anyway, so it didn't matter too much.

I don't smoke, don't drink, paid attention to all safety rules. Babies always slept with their head on the crook of my elbow, facing me, so I was constanty aware of every movement. Around a year old they started not settling in that position, so I began putting them in their cot.

They are now 5, 3 and 20 months and I usually end up with at least one of them in my bed at night. Though we do get the odd night, like last night, when they all stay in their own bed, and I think now that DC3 is finally sleeping through, that will increase.

I never discussed it with any HVs. With DC2, we had to spend a night in hospital when he was about 15 months. They gave us a big cot for him and a little trestle bed for me. There was absolutely no possibility of him sleeping in a strange cot when he was ill, so I just brought him into the minute trestle bed. No-one said anything. The nurse even managed to take his temperature several times during the night without waking him and barely disturbing me.

I also slept on the sofa with them many times, though not with them lying on the sofa - me sitting up and them bf in my arms until they fell asleep in my arms - I'd nod off with my head back against the cushions. Neither they nor I ever moved an inch. But I don't advocate sofa-sleeping, I just felt the particular position and circumstances (DH almost always in the room as well, awake) we did it in were not risky.

PashaFox Mon 04-Mar-13 14:59:31

DH 7mo DS and I co-sleep, our bed is central in the room (not against wall) DS sleeps in the middle of us under our duvet (i know, I know, naughty mummy) and we've never had an issue. I find we all sleep better this way as DS feels safe and secure, and we actually get some shuteye!

Schooldidi Mon 04-Mar-13 15:11:44

I co-slept with both of mine. Dd2 still regularly comes into bed with us in the middle of the night and she's nearly 3.

I made sure I followed all the safety guidelines and I am absolutely convinced that it was safer for them to be in my bed than for me to be trying to stay awake to feed them and ending up falling asleep in an unsafe place.

My hv asked the question once, I answered honestly that we co-slept, she advised me not to then followed up by saying that actually she had co-slept with all 3 of hers, she thought it was wonderful but she wasn't allowed to advise it. We never mentioned it again, either of us.

npg1 Wed 06-Mar-13 21:56:47

I just think its so bad to co sleep, sorry. Im a mum of 2, been a nanny and now a childminder and always hear of bad sleep routines! Babies should be in their own beds

MysteriousHamster Wed 06-Mar-13 22:05:10

Why should babies be in their own beds, npg1? It's fair enough if it works for you, but mums have been co-sleeping with babies for aeons. So long as it's done right, then it's perfectly safe. They won't be doing it when they're 15.

My DS goes to bed in his room but wakes up most nights and heads straight onto our own bed. I love sleeping with him in the bed, he's no trouble, sleeps well, and we get just as much sleep as if he was in his own bed.

npg1 Wed 06-Mar-13 22:13:06

Because it disrupts the whole routine. You put them to bed in their owm bed but let them get up to your bed. They know they can sleep with you!

sweetkitty Wed 06-Mar-13 22:13:22

I have coslept with all four of mine from birth to about 15 months. I had a cosleeping/side car cot, best thing ever but half the time my bum was in it and the baby was in the middle of the bed.

DP said he used to watch me sleeping, babies head at my boob, my arm tucked round them, knees up underneath their feet, I was constantly checking them in my sleep and would even push him away if he turned over or got too close.

It's a very primitive, instinctive thing. Sorry but I think sticking a newborn baby in a little box especially in another room is sad. Cosleeping is the norm in most other parts if the world.

The HV never asked me where they slept at night and two were born at home and the ones that were born in hospital we never stayed a night luckily.

sweetkitty Wed 06-Mar-13 22:16:02

Mine all went into their own cots (well the cosleeper with four sides done up) fine and their own rooms no problem (sticks two fingers up at the rod for your own back brigade), they will all be sound asleep until about 7am tomorrow morning when at least one will come in for a cuddle grin

I so miss sleeping next to a wee baby and we've just put the last baby in a big bed so no more cot hmm

BertieBotts Wed 06-Mar-13 22:23:19

It's always been against official advice, I think you've probably been reading very pro-co-sleeping literature. (Which I agree with totally grin)

In fact the official line is that co-sleeping is okay but because there are so many guidelines to follow, it's easier for HVs, GPs etc to advise against it. Research shows that done properly, it is as safe as cot sleeping and some people believe that the awareness mothers have of their babies means that it is safer - this is just a theory though as it has not been proven by research (and never will now as cot death is thankfully so rare).

You sound like you're doing great smile And I used to deal with questions by sidestepping them. "Is he sleeping alright?" "Yes great thank you!" <Most likely we have a wildly different perception of "alright" but never mind!>

ShowOfHands Wed 06-Mar-13 22:23:24

"They know they can sleep with you! "


I co-slept with all three of mine. We never had any problem with routine. They grew out of it in their own time and we've never had any issues with sleeping in general. It works for some people; for others it doesn't. Follow the guidelines, and don't take any stupid risks and be as safe as you can.

FlyingUmbrella Wed 06-Mar-13 22:36:38

We co sleep with 13 month old DS and have done since he was 6 weeks old. I think it made BF at night much easier and possibly safer as I wasnt at risk of falling asleep whilst holding DS whilst trying to stay awake on a chair next to his cot whilst feeding him. We follow all the guidelines.
It works well for us. He now sleeps in his cot until first waking, usually at 11ish but is then in with us. We recently night weaned but he still loves coming into our bed for a cuddle and we love having him there! Quite a few friends think we're mad and ask when he'll sleep by himself all night, I just say he'll do it when he's ready.
I appreciate it isn't for everyone but if it works for you and you follow the guidelines, I fail to see a problem with it.
Anyway, given the option of being alone in a cot or in a cosy bed with loads of cuddles for the night, I know which I'd pick!

BertieBotts Wed 06-Mar-13 22:38:41

Yep, my child knows he can sleep with me. 99% of the time he chooses to sleep in his own bed, however. In fact I had to put him in my bed the other night because he had croup and I wouldn't have slept a wink listening to him breathe through the wall, but he wasn't bothered about being with me particularly.

I think it would be very sad if he felt he wasn't allowed to come for a cuddle in the night if he needed one.

Carolra Wed 06-Mar-13 22:42:55

I co slept with mine. Loved it and would do it again. There is excellent info on the BabiesKnow website if you want to read some recent studies and safety tips etc.

Carolra Wed 06-Mar-13 22:44:56

npg1 - I think I've already mentioned that out of my coworkers, the three who coslept had much better sleep than those who didn't cosleep. If you had been minding our 10 children then you would have presumed that cosleeping = good sleep, baby in own room = poor sleep. As we all went back to work when our babies were very tiny (about 14-18 weeks) poor sleep quality would have been a major issue. Thankfully we had the family and friends support for cosleeping.

Sleep routine and quality of sleep has never been an issue for us, and we remain completely pro-co sleeping.

AlwaysWashing Thu 07-Mar-13 08:35:06

I had the same from our early days Midwife, she practically begged us not to co sleep & told us that she had lost 2 babies due to co sleeping over her 25 year career. I really liked her as she was hugely supportive in every other way but felt a bit cross with her for what felt like scare tactics re co sleeping.
The upshot was that DS2 hated his Moses basket so slept on me for the first few weeks, which worked well with bf and as he got bigger we built his cot, left off one side and used it as a co sleeper (just simply as the specifically made co sleeping cots seemed so over priced) and then gradually got him to sleep in that for longer and longer periods. DS2 is now 14 weeks and is almost there with sleeping through and in the interests of us all getting a good nights sleep what generally happens is that he's put into his cot to settle himself to sleep and then comes in with us at about 2am when he naturally stirs and sleeps until somewhere between 3.30/6.30 when he wakes for a feed.
Bit long winded sorry! I was happy to co sleep and I was surprised to find that DH was too. It was important to me that DS2 could self soothe and settle himself to sleep but co sleeping seems to be working well for us and him.
I think you have to go with what suits you and yours best observing the guidelines as much as you can.
Incidentally DS1 hated being in with us & still does - squirms like a monkey!
Good luck with it all grin

Selenium Thu 07-Mar-13 09:14:55

I cosleep with my ds, who is 13 weeks and did from day 1 in the hospital (having decided this was the way forward from my experience with dd, where I effectively ended up cosleeping without intending to and panicking too much about it!) I had a cs so was in the hospital for 2 nights and no-one batted an eyelid. One hv gave me a leaflet on safe cosleeping and told me that it wasn't what they recommended but that she understood why I was doing it. For me, it fits really well with breastfeeding at night, if you can feed lying down and meant that I was never sleep deprived even from day 1, as feeding can virtually be done in your sleep. It is LOVELY being cuddled up to your little baby and I feel I can monitor him much better in the night if he is right next to me.

However, my dh is scared he'll roll onto ds in the night and is quite disturbed by all his little grunts and snorts in the night, so he is sleeping in the spare bed for the time being, which makes me a bit sad (miss him!) We have now moved ds's cot bed into our room against our bed and taken one side off so he starts the night in there right next to me. Hoping I can gradually get him to spend more of the night in there, as I don't see myself cosleeping long-term! I am quite encouraged by the stories on here of the transition to the cot/bed eventually being trouble-free.

OhMyNoReally Thu 07-Mar-13 09:15:24

I co-slept for the first month or two and the dc were swaddled. After they slept for around 4 hours between feeds I put them in their cot as it worked for us as a family. I also swaddled for 4 months, just recently stopped as ds wanted his hands for comfort, before they had annoyed him.

I was very suprised this time round to be told not to swaddle I couldn't understand why this age old method of putting baby to sleep was suddenly frowned upon.

Co-sleeping wasn't much of a suprise, as in 2010 with dc3 it was a bit questionable by hv and mw, but had been encouraged with dc1+2. It's so annoying and confusing when the advice keeps changing. No wonder parents get annoyed with hvs.

Gingerbreadlatte Thu 07-Mar-13 16:22:02

A genuine question not criticism - how does it affect relationships with partners? It wouldn't work for me for that reason. I'd really like to understand this point better?

gingerbread you just need to get imaginative.

Gingerbreadlatte Thu 07-Mar-13 16:54:00

World gone crazy- im not just talkjng aviut sex! ok, so said child is with mother at all times. Doesn't nap alone.

Gingerbreadlatte Thu 07-Mar-13 16:54:37

I said genuine question. No need to e rude.

Gingerbreadlatte Thu 07-Mar-13 16:55:25

I'm talking about emotional stuff as much as anything.

showtunesgirl Thu 07-Mar-13 16:55:38

I don't think anyone was rude. confused

Gingerbreadlatte Thu 07-Mar-13 16:57:28

Ok sorry- I'm overreacting a bit ( and got a child keeps pressing post on my phone)

It's massive point for me and I'm not co-sleeping. I can't be imaginative here

Mama1980 Thu 07-Mar-13 16:58:43

I co slept with ds1 and intend too with ds2 both were extremely prem. Before I was discharged first time from hospital my guidelines form the nicu were:
No pillows, use covers towels,
No alcohol or medication
Not if you smoke
Use blankets of possible rather than a duvet and a firmish mattress.

5madthings Thu 07-Mar-13 17:00:42

Co-slept with all of ours, youngest is 26mths sand still co-sleeps and you can still have a bedtime routine etc. Ours all went onto their own beds happily at about 3yrs old. Never had a cot!

Relationship wise its fine, its recommended for a baby to sleep in the same room as its parents for days and night sleep for the first 6mths anyway.

You find time for each other, 5 kids and 15yrs later our relationship is fine. Even if you don't co'sleep its hard when they are little but they aren't little for long! And time co-sleeping meant more sleep so we were happier and more able to make time for each other.

5madthings Thu 07-Mar-13 17:02:38

No one has said they don't nap Aline, my dd has a nap in our bed every afternoon for about two hours. But under 6mths if age no they slept with us around and as they got older they would sleep in our bed, we just settled them to sleep and then left them safe in bed.

BertieBotts Thu 07-Mar-13 20:37:38

Gingerbread I think we're as bemused as each other grin I don't see how co-sleeping could affect anything emotionally with a partner. No more than any other effect of having a new baby, anyway.

MrsSham Thu 07-Mar-13 20:57:55

Dd is 7 now and I was told by HV at every visit not to co sleep and it was recorded in dds red book, it actually stopped me taking dd to clinic which was a shame as I was actually in need of advice on feeding. But just couldn't bothered justifying ir being told I must stop co sleeping.

pixiegumboot Thu 07-Mar-13 21:22:11

I did with both, still do with one, wouldn't tell anyone 'official ' tho mainly because I can't be arsed with the cats bum face

gingerbread I didn't mean to be rude, and apologies if my post did read that way, it wasn't intended.

Emotinally it is fine. There is evidence to show that co-sleeping makes children more secure and independent, so actually, long term, it means we can make more time for ourselves. Of course the first few months with any newborn can be hardwork, but I found cosleeping lessened parental guilt, meant I wasn't fighting my instincts to cuddle my child, and that mine and DH's relationship grew stronger. As someone upthread mentioned, more sleep for all of us meant that we were less knackered and could make time for each other too.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now