Where should DH sleep?(39 Posts)
Planning ahead, baby is only due in Jan. DH will take his 2 weeks' paternity leave and then take a leave of absence, so he will be at home for the first 8 weeks or so. I'm planning to sleep in our double bed, with baby next to the bed in a cot/crib for easy access for nighttime feeds.
We had assumed DH would stay in the room too, but the more I think about it, the more I wonder if we shouldn't set up a mattress in the spare room? Doesn't make any sense for him to be woken every few hours when baby wakes and I'm feeding etc? I'd rather he was well-rested so he can be more useful during the day!
What have others done? How did it work out for you? I'm not keen to kick him out tbh and I don't think he'll be thrilled at the suggestion- he's super keen to be in on the action, but I want to do what's best for our mental and physical health (all 3 of us!)
We had a spare room with double bed...it worked brilliantly...for everyone...
We have four dc all slept in our room for the first 6 or 7 months. I can count on one hand the number of times the baby disturbed dh. There were nights I contemplated poking his eyes out for daring to sleep through it all!!
DH stayed in bed with me, DS was in the bedside cot. He sleeps through pretty much anything though!
My DW and I stayed together, Obviously the brunt of the effort of feeding was laid at her feet but as a father I wanted to experience as much as I could those first months. Yes tiredness is part of baby life but I wouldn't change those mornings for the world where I would take our DS down stairs and watch a couple hours of family guy in the dark while he drifted off in my arms. Sorry to break the stereotype but I enjoyed waking up early for a bit of daddy/son time when I was able to feed him with the bottle later down the line.
DH always slept in our bed. He would wake slightly when baby cried but seemed strangely impervious to general baby noise. Not sure why all these precious DH’s have to sleep in a separate room.
I suggest starting with you all together and seeing how it goes. Having said that, I threw DP out fairly quickly with both ours because I was waking every time baby stirred and with DP in the room I woke every time he stirred as well. He on the other hand slept through everything
Ds- first baby. For around the first fortnight one of us stayed awake and held him downstairs! Then we (somehow!)settled him in a moses basket next to our bed.
Dd- first fortnight dp slept in the spare room and was in charge of any night wakings ds might have. I co slept with dd in our bed. When she became a bit more settled dp came back and dd went into a crib by our bed. If she needed to come into our bed dp would usually retreat to the spare room until around 5 months after which we all just slept together.
With both dc we were lucky enough to have a spare room for one of us to 'escape' to if need be.
We've got a spare bed but DH stayed with me and both of our 2 DDs - he very rarely woke up (despite my best efforts some times!) and it was much nicer for me to have (albeit snoring) company.
Dh stayed for dd1 but didn't for dd2. I preferred him out so I didn't worry about waking him or him waking me.
I put a bed in the baby’s room. I started off with father and moved in the night ensuring I got a shit nights sleep and did everything myself and he slept through. Mmm maybe not such a great plan.
What exactly are you expecting him to do during the day that needs the super-charged night's sleep? I'm sure he'll manage nappy changes even if he's been woken in the night. Leave him where he is to share the experience with you.
Also, I'm guessing you're planning to breastfeed, but in case that doesn't work out you might want him on hand so you can share bottle feeding, not safely tucked away in another room.
Have you asked him how he would feel being banished to the spare room? He’s not got to get up for work so it’s not a problem him waking in the night is it? Don’t make him feel pushed out.
My DH was often awake helping me in the night (we bottle fed), and then went to work as a Dr in the morning- never once did we think about sleeping separately.
If you end up having a c-section then lifting the baby can be difficult to start with. DH had our babies sleeping on his side of the bed for the first week each time, so he'd lift them up and pass them to me for a feed.
Just might be useful if you do end up struggling.
I wouldn’t plan ahead too much as you have no idea how things will work out. I would imagine that in the early days, you might appreciate the moral support of him in the bedroom with you. It’s more likely that he’ll benefit from a separate bedroom when he’s back at work and you’re still chugging on with night feeding three or four months in.
However, you might appreciate a spare bed in the last few weeks of pregnancy when it can be very hard to sleep comfortably and you’ll find yourself tossing and turning.
DP stayed, we all co-slept. I did the "in" tray and he did the "out" tray (if necessary) it really worked for us and felt like we were sharing duties.
We all stayed in our bed!
Both of ours started off the night in moses basket then ended up in our bed at some point during the night.
I breastfed - dh never even woke up.
Really helpful, thanks everyone! I've not yet asked him how he feels about it- I very much think he'll want to stay, but I'm pragmatic and want to make our lives easier for what I assume will be the tough first bit. It's useful to hear what other people have experienced- I think we'll aim to all stay in the same room, but adapt if necessary.
And yes- planning to breastfeed, and was hoping he'd be supercharged for all the laundry that I hear will need doing. And cooking delicious meals! :D
Even now I find myself worried about waking him (which has been known to happen) when I'm struggling to get comfortable at 4am and I'm tossing and turning (like a beached whale...!). So I was wondering whether it might be better to not have that concern, but I agree we'll have to play it by ear.
Thank you for all your advice!
All 3 of us slept in the room for about 4 weeks, then DH moved to the spare room until DS2 went to his own room at 8 months! Certainly during the week anyway. It meant that DH could get some solid sleep - I'd have to wake anyway as was breastfeeding. Anytime from 5am DH would take DS2 away as he'd had some undisturbed sleep. Good luck!
One more thing to consider is where you’re going to feed at night. I know a lot of people feed their baby in bed but I found after my caesarean that I couldn’t get comfortable in bed so I used to go into the spare room where we had a very upright sofa which was perfect for me, it also helped me not fall asleep when feeding and meant I could watch my iPad during some of the 40 minute feeds without disturbing my OH. I also used to change her nappy in there as she would cry during this.
Oh yes, DH also had to see to DS1, although this was mercifully infrequent by then! How people manage with tiny age gaps and poor sleepers I'll never know!
After a few nights of the baby crying because that's what they do, and me crying because I couldn't stop her crying, I set up the sofabed downstairs. DH doesn't fit on it, so I couldn't have thrown him out of the bedroom. Once DD was sleeping a decent length of time, she went in her bedroom and I went back to the proper bed. DH did the night feeds one or both weekend nights, with expressed milk, and I slept in the bed, just waking up to express when my boobs were exploding. He sat up all night watching films, causing me irrational anxiety about not teaching the baby the difference between night and day. She figured it out pretty quickly.
DD was small and sleepy, and I was knackered, so I needed to wake both of us up properly to feed, with lights on, nappy change and my iPad to faff on the Internet. It would have been massively disruptive to DH to do all that in the same room, and I couldn't see any benefit in us both being exhausted.
Keep him in the same room at least for now. My dh looks back really fondly at those early days (I would feed, he would wind and cuddle) we were all exhausted but he would be really sad not to have had those memories. Don't protect your DH from being a daddy.
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