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How on earth do we manage “safe sleep”???

(43 Posts)
UpToMyElbowsInDiapers Sun 14-Apr-19 04:29:08

DS (3 weeks old) will only sleep snuggled up against me, or OCCASIONALLY in a cozy laundry basket my DM has filled with blankets. I bring him into bed to breastfeed, and often wake up 2 hours later to find he and I have both nodded off together... which he clearly loves. It’s the only way he’ll settle. In other words... not “safe sleep” at all. I am fully aware of this so please (please!) don’t tell me all the horrible stories of babies who have died in their parents’ bed or been asphyxiated by cushiony surfaces... I know. The stories are haunting me. I am fully motivated to change.

What I really need is tips to get DS to sleep in his sleep-safe bassinet for more than 7 minutes, which is his current record. Because that’s also untenable for our family. Please please please: how do I get this cushion-loving cuddle bunny to sleep on a firm mattress with no blankets? So far I’ve tried swaddling and I’ve tried pre-warning the surface with a heating pad. No dice. Other ideas...?

TTQuestion Sun 14-Apr-19 04:35:50

In my limited experience, there isn't a way. You have to work in shifts with your DH and do half the night each.
The likelihood is you are going to fall asleep while taking care of baby so make sure you're set up to do it it as safely as humanly possible, as this is far safer than accidentally nodding off say on the sofa.

I ended up and still am happily (mostly) co-sleeping with my cot refuser

It's a stark realisation I know.

drspouse Sun 14-Apr-19 04:43:59

We didn't co sleep mainly but there is a lot out there on what kind of bed covers are safest etc.

BelulahBlanca Sun 14-Apr-19 04:52:50

We co-sleep. I take everything off the bed except a flat sheet and sleep with an arm around DD. She cannot stand a sleeping bag or blanket so she is in a long sleeved sleep suit. I sleep in a dressing gown.
Like @TT said, if they don’t like the basket make the bed safe. It’s more important you all get some sleep then he is in a basket at the moment.

MrsFDJR Sun 14-Apr-19 04:57:21

Congratulations on your new baby ❤️
I co-slept/ bedshared with my baby until he was 8 months old. It meant we all got sleep and were a happier family. It can be worrying with all the negative stories out there about co-sleeping but what I found is the majority of mums I have spoke to, did/do it at some point.
For us, it was just me and baby in the bed, he had a blanket, I had a duvet that would be intertwined between my legs and no higher than waist. Slept in long sleeve pyjamas or dressing gown if it was nippy. I did find I’d get a few aches and pains from being in the same foetal position but as a mum I don’t think you ever sleep the same again grin. I didn’t drink or smoke, and made sure I could get a decent nap during the day (Mum or friend to watch baby) so that I had some alone sleep time and could fully relax.

Here is a link about safe co-sleeping

Over the 8 months we tried several times to get him in a cot with short successes but finally he now sleeps exclusively in his cot. So this period you are going through won’t be forever. Do what works best for you and your family.

Good luck x

Jent13c Sun 14-Apr-19 05:22:26

This was why I switched to co sleeping. My son would only sleep in my arms and even then he was on/off breast so many times and I was so so tired. I woke up with him in my arms and freaked out at how unsafe it was so switched to lying on flat firm mattress, just me and him on bed, no pillows, light quilt around my legs and warmer pjs on. I slept around him (if you Google image cosleeping you'll see the position) and he had constant access to milk at night. I didnt exactly feel well rested at the time but it meant that I was only awake while he latched on and then we both fell asleep together. Remember that the hormones released during breastfeeding make you both sleepy so it is completely natural for you to drift off which is fine if theres someone else about to keep an eye on the baby.

Also it does get 2 years old my little boy takes himself off to bed, sometimes for 13 hours at a time!

blackcat86 Sun 14-Apr-19 05:34:27

Make sure that you are always putting him down in his cot when fast asleep. Get him off to sleep and wait for about 20 mins. Put something that smells like you in the corner of the cot, get the room nice and dark (at night) and use white noise. Do you have a motion mat? Those things are literally life savers? If he wakes and screams go and settle him back to sleep by rocking him. Once he fast asleep get him back into the cot. You need to persist or sleep in shifts. It's either or really. As you know you are putting your baby at risk. Could a relative come over to help so you can nap in the day?

SomethingStupidSomethingGreat Sun 14-Apr-19 06:07:20

We co-slept for the first few weeks with my ds as he would not go in his next to me at all. It wasn't quite next to me enough apparently. Probably about 8 weeks in he would then be put down in his crib. I think sometimes it just takes time. Google the 4th trimester (if you haven't already), I found that really useful in understanding this behaviour. The best thing for our family in those exhausted early days was my OH staying up with baby til about midnight/1am - whenever he woke for a feed - and I went to bed about 22pm. It meant I got some good quality sleep, not listening out for a baby, and not scared to move - before my night with baby started.
I know it's hard OP, believe me it gets easier even if it doesn't feel like it atm x

countrymousesussex Sun 14-Apr-19 06:21:09

Have you tried a Sleepyhead? I know they’re not recommended for overnight sleep BUT if it’s a choice between that and a laundry basket with blankets in.....absolutely transformed our DD’s sleep as she was thrashing around so much she’d bang her head on the side of the crib.

Or, is the carrycot if your pram safe for overnight sleeping? They’re quite cocoony, which your baby might like?

HappyPunky Sun 14-Apr-19 06:30:39

We Co slept with DD in a grobag and me in a sleeping bag wearing a cardigan. She mostly slept on me so I was exhausted until she stopped at about seven months. I just made it as safe as possible and did as little as possible in the day and didn't commit to anything just went out when I felt like it.

Theweathermansaid Sun 14-Apr-19 06:31:18

it's totally normal and instinctive to cosleep. According to kellymom website, safe tips are:

•Baby should be placed on his back to sleep.
•The sleep surface should be firm. Do not put a baby on a waterbed mattress, pillow, beanbag, sheepskin or any other soft surface to sleep.
•Bedding should be tight fitting to the mattress.
•The mattress should be tight fitting to the headboard and footboard (or sides of the crib).
•There should not be any loose pillows, stuffed animals, or soft blankets near the baby’s face.
•There should not be any space between the bed and adjoining wall where the baby could roll and become trapped.
•Babies (with or without an adult) should never sleep on a sofa, couch, futon, recliner, or other surface where baby can slip into a crevice or become wedged against the back of the chair/sofa/etc.

moleeye Sun 14-Apr-19 06:36:55

I feel your pain x

Have a 4 week old who seems to hate everything his sister loved. We went out on Friday and bought a crib as he was in a Moses basket in our room which he HATES.

Two nights in and the crib has changed our life! I put him down awake in it in his grobag and he goes to sleep. He is still waking every 2 hours for a feed (ebf) , but he's not fighting the bed now. I just plonk him in it and he goes off.

I'm not one for co-sleeping but each to their own. And quite frankly this stage is so exhausting I agree with doing anything that makes your life easier

Good luck!

HalyardHitch Sun 14-Apr-19 06:37:05

My youngest was like this. I gave up trying to transfer him very quickly. I ditched the blankets, ditched a pillow, wrapped up warm and let him snuggle in bed with me. Lie on your left side and line his head with your breast. Much the way you slept when you would have been pregnant. If I was really cold I wrapped the blanket around my legs and sometimes slept on the very edge of the pillow. Neither of those things are recommended though.
You can then start to master bf laying down.
Sorry....I don't know if this helps. I just gave up grin

fitzbilly Sun 14-Apr-19 06:39:24

Just co-sleep, using the safe sleep advice people have already posted. It's the only way you will get some decent sleep.

Humans have been co-sleeping since the dawn of time, it's very new to think babies have to sleep alone.

There is a safe was to co sleep, and it is a really nice bonding time too! Your baby wants to feel safe and warm snuggled up to you, so go for it!

NewMum19344567 Sun 14-Apr-19 06:46:14

When I coslept- only tight clothes, no pillows, no blankets, baby in gro bag, husband not in the bed but had baby monitor so could see us if he woke up in the night, the 'next to me' on babies side so if he learnt to roll would roll into that. It wasn't really comfy or nice but was the only way the baby slept! I read the gentle sleeping guide that showed the list to follow to safe sleep but can't remember them off the top of my head!

Happygolucky009 Sun 14-Apr-19 06:51:17

I co-slept lots, I do not smoke, was not doing drugs or drinking alcohol at the time. I was breastfeeding so child was positioned next to breast, covers were wrapped around my waist and I slept in dressing gown for warmth.

Partner often sleep in another room which I preferred!

DelphiMum Sun 14-Apr-19 10:26:24

Read up about safe co sleeping. Basics are no smoking or drinking. Baby on your side of the bed. Get duvet miles out the way of the baby. BF lying down and then just let baby sleep under your arm.

Icedlatte Sun 14-Apr-19 10:29:42

Hi, actually the advice has changed this year, The Lullaby Trust put out new guidance a couple of months ago in partnership with the NHS about how to cosleep safely, so please don't beat yourself up!! Just follow those guidelines and get some sleep, you sound exhausted, stressed and full of guilt. A good sleep will help in so many ways!

ABC1234DEF Sun 14-Apr-19 10:30:57

Next to me crib was a real game changer here

Pushpull Sun 14-Apr-19 10:34:19

Another one saying follow the safe sleep sleeping guidelines. Most of the mums I know who have breastfed have bed shared in one form or another and I'm of the view that its inevitable so you may as well learn how to do it safely. Please dont beat yourself up, rest when you can

Ponchie Sun 14-Apr-19 10:38:26

I use a snuzpod with a sleepyhead and the mattress removed to allow for better airflow

UpToMyElbowsInDiapers Sun 14-Apr-19 12:42:34

Hi all, this is really reassuring and helpful. Thanks. I think for the next few nights I’ll focus on making our bed safer (ditch the duvet). I still hold out hope that we’ll be able to move our DS at some point into his own sleeping area as I find that side co-sleeping position is murder for my back, but I take on board the “fourth trimester” comments. And the cuddles are nice!

Intellectually, I know this is just a phase. DD (21 months) is a champion sleeper in her own room... I just can’t for the life of me remember how we got there! 😂

Justonemorepancake Sun 14-Apr-19 12:44:43

Co sleep - intentionally and therefore safely. If you follow the guidelines it is safe.

TheVeryHungryTortoise Sun 14-Apr-19 14:15:13

My Son was like this too, now he's 5 months old and sometimes cosleeps (often spends the majority of his night in his next to me crib and then at some point in the morning I bring him into bed with us for a snooze.)

There is nothing wrong with cosleeping if done safely, PP have already posted good links. I do have a little bit of advice for what worked for us though. When he was a newborn I used to feed/cuddle to sleep in bed and then I'd roll onto my side while still holding him to my chest and slowly roll him onto his back. I could then sleep a foot or so away from him and not fear about crushing him! Over the weeks I'd move further away from him and eventually managed put him in his crib. (Sorry that's not explained very well!)

reetgood Sun 14-Apr-19 14:20:11

Yes, I had the same problem. I had a co sleeper side cot and we got quite good at transferring him from me to cot, although it did require a slightly farcical dance with sticking a muslin down my top whilst he snoozed on me, transferring using the muslin like a sheet, and preheating the cot with a wheatbag. We were both quite sleep deprived. I didn’t co-sleep with him until later when he seemed a bit more robust.

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