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Can anyone talk to me about co-sleeping?

(33 Posts)
kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 20:02:52

Hia, am just wanting information, ideas or points of view on co-sleeping. DD gets really unsettled at around 4am and the only way that I can get her to sleep more is to put her in bed with me and DH.

I put her on top of the duvet in between us and although I don't think that I would roll on her, I worried that DH might. She doesn't roll yet but is trying to so am cautious about putting her on one side.

Is there any safe way of carrying on putting her with us or is it a big no-no?

I have pushed her cot right up against the bed but it doesnt work the same.

Would appreciate any thoughts. thanks

ThePurplePim Wed 29-Jul-09 20:11:59

My ds slept with us right from the word go (even on his first night, in the hospital, the only way he would sleep was face down on my shoulder) until he was 8 months old, when he made it clear that he was ready to sleep on his own. He was breastfed until he was 10 months old, when he weaned himself with no trauma. Co-sleeping was an absolute life-saver for me, as he was a fairly constant feeder and I would have got no sleep if I'd had to keep getting up and seeing to him in another room. Neither of us ever rolled onto him (you get really good at sleeping like a panther on a branch)- you become absolutely aware of where they are, even when asleep. Personally I think there are huge benefits to co-sleeping, and I'm really proud that we were able to rspond to and meet his needs in the way that he obviously wanted. It's not for everybody (and indeed it's not necessary for everybody - I wouldn't have chosen it had it not been clear that this was the only possible way forward). Health professionals will generally frown on it, so my answer was just not to talk about it with them. There is a great deal of cultural evidence to support the practice, we've just become divorced from it in the west.

In a nutshell, if it works for you just do it. Good luck!

GwarchodwrPlant Wed 29-Jul-09 20:20:03

My DS has always needed to be close to me and try as I might I could never get him to settle for long in his moses basket next to our bed so I started co-sleeping and it's worked brilliantly.

He is now 10mths old and still breastfed and co-sleeps although we have had to make a few adjustments.

We have removed the divan from underneath the bed so now we only sleep on the mattress on the floor which is fine, perfectly comfortable and most of all- safe.

We have also moved the bed into the corner of the room so that two sides of the bed are up against the wall. I put DS to sleep between me and the wall so there is no chance of DP rolling on him or DS rolling off the bed.

It works well for us and I couldn't imagine it any other way!

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 20:21:14

I do feel completely aware of her when she is there and i wake at the tiniest noise or movement.

Do you mind me asking what you did with regards blankets/duvet?

GwarchodwrPlant Wed 29-Jul-09 20:26:18

We've always ahd a duvet, a microfibre one and its currently a very low TOG as it's so warm at night. In the winter, when DS was born, we had a higher TOG and he slept under it with us. Not strictly following guidelines I know, but I was so conscious of him that I would never have let the duvet cover his head.

We still used pillows as well, but only one very light one each.

ThePurplePim Wed 29-Jul-09 20:31:10

Ditto re duvets - ds slept under ours with us. When it was warm he had his own small blanket alongside me instead of the duvet. He didn't use a pillow, but we did. His head wasn't near the pillows (we did a lot of lying-down feeding).

BertieBotts Wed 29-Jul-09 20:33:38

Hello! I love these threads Just background, we made a conscious decision to co-sleep and I think I'm the one who's not ready to give it up yet! I think if I wanted to put DS in a cot he'd settle for that about 70% of the time at this stage.

Can you take one side off the cot and have that on your side? I do sometimes put DS in between me and DP but generally he is on my side with a sidecar cot. He is bigger though (9.5mo) and although I'm sure he'd let us know if we rolled on him I sleep much easier when he's just on my side. You could also use a bed guard, but look for one which has no gaps he could get trapped in.

I have always kept the duvet away from him, he sleeps on the sheet with a cotton blanket which also covers my midriff, the duvet goes over my feet. In the cold months when he was newborn I used to wear a dressing gown in bed as my arms would get cold. I wouldn't put him on top of the duvets as babies are supposed to sleep on a firm surface to reduce any suffocation risks. Also he can roll and tends to choose to sleep on his front now.

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 20:34:40

Im wondering if I made sure the cot was wedged up against the bed if I could put her between me and it. then I could tuck the duvet round me so it couldn't go on to her.

I do use quite big pillows though, should i get thinner ones even if I put her so her head is further down the bed?

BertieBotts Wed 29-Jul-09 20:35:35

Yes sorry meant to say, he is nowhere near the pillows either - his head is level with my boobs, and I lie on my side with my lower arm outstretched along the pillow to stop DS wriggling up and underneath them.

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 20:37:15

I do drop the side of the cot, but i think she just isn't close enough still!

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 20:38:28

x-posts! I put her head at boob level too with my arm outstretched.

GreenMonkies Wed 29-Jul-09 20:40:25

Two words; side-car safe, roomy, comforting, easy. (as you can see mine love our bed, although this was taken over two years ago!!)

ThePurplePim Wed 29-Jul-09 20:41:21

We also dropped the side of the cot but it didn't really make much difference. He wanted to be close, and I couldn't really feed him comfortably when he was on the cot rather than on the bed. Where the cot DID come in really useful was as he got older and more mobile it prevented him from falling out of bed when he was on that side of me.

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 20:43:57

Oh wow, they are so cute! smile

thats kinda what I was trying to achieve with the drop side cot against the bed but it isn't quite the same height.

Are they expensive? We are pretty poor at the mo. (who isn't sad)

stainesmassif Wed 29-Jul-09 20:52:29

i love co-sleeping and stopped feeling guilty about it at the same time that i realised it would save my sanity. currently i wrap a nursing pillow around ds - feet end that is - so that he can't kick me in the stomach all night or roll out. we both sleep under a summer weight duvet. dh sleeps in the spare room - but more so that he can get a full night's sleep.

i do find that you are hyper aware of where they are anyway. plus i get to see his lovely face in the middle of the night. smile

barleycorn Wed 29-Jul-09 21:01:39

I've co-slept with ds2 from day 1, dh is a v heavy sleeper so I don't like them sleeping next to eachother - besides that space is sometimes taken by ds1 who gives him a good kick if he feels he's not got enough space, oh happy days.

We've got a babydan bedguard, ds2 sleeps at boob level, well away from my (flat) pillow & I've only just started putting him under the duvet, now he's over 6 months. Before that we had a light blanket covering us, with the duvet round my legs only.

Co-sleeping's great when they're little, must work on ds1 though...(he's 3).

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 21:16:44

I will google bed guards and side car beds.

I do love bringing her into the bed in the early mornings. Its great to wake up next to her. I feel so much more bonded to her and feel like I am nurturing her. Its a much more chilled out way to wake up, its not getting up at 5am which is always a good thing! wink

cheesesarnie Wed 29-Jul-09 21:20:07

ds2 grew out of cosleeping way before we did!wed had such problems with dd and ds1 that by the time ds2 came we decided cosleeping was the way for us.we babyproofed the room,matress on the floor me in the middle,dh one side ds2 the other side.i slept with my pillow turned length ways so it wasnt near him and duvet between my legs(my own little nest!) and ds2 was first swaddled and as he got under he wore a grow bag.

cheesesarnie Wed 29-Jul-09 21:20:51

i miss it!ds wont get in our bed at all now.he says its for babiessad hes only 3!

kittypink Wed 29-Jul-09 21:57:44

thats really sweet, but sad for you sad

i have looked at bed guards and think they may be the way forward! DD can use it when she is ready for a proper bed so will get plenty of use.

Thank you all so much, I am definitely going to carry on bringing her into the bed. She obviously needs the closeness and it sounds like most children grow out of it by them selves. I was thinking of keeping her in our room till she slept through or when she is around a year old (ish).

GreenMonkies Thu 30-Jul-09 19:54:44


We got our full size side car cot from ebay for £25!! If you are converting a normal drop side cot you have to completely remove the drop side, and raise the mattress so it's level with yours.

feralgirl Thu 30-Jul-09 20:39:24

I wish I'd shopped around and got a side car cot. I never intended to co-sleep and it was MN that taught me that it's a perfectly acceptable thing to do (my mum remains to be convinced!) DS was in a cot in my room for about 6 months but we also co-slept parts of most nights using the cot side as a barrier iyswim and it was fine.

I've moved him into his room now because I was just waking him up when I came to bed. I still have him in with me most mornings from 4am-ish so I've got a bed guard rail thingy. I roll myself up in my duvet and move all my pillows except one and he's in his grobag. I generally sleep at arms length from him though because he tends to suck my hair otherwise!

The only prob I've had with the bed guard was that I left DS to play on the bed the other day while I was faffing about and he rolled around it and onto the floor sad blush A king size bed with detachable legs is top of our "to-buy" list before we have any more DCs...

ZippysMum Fri 31-Jul-09 14:24:24

FWIW we made our cot-bed with only 3 sides instead of 4 and have it lashed to the bed on the open side. It has 3 base positions, and the middle mattress position puts the cot mattress at exactly the same height as our bed. We didn't want to splash out for a side car separately and so the home-made version seemed most practical!

kittypink Sat 01-Aug-09 19:23:24

DH has been wonderful and altered our cot base height then lashed it to our bed. First night trying it out tonight! DD is asleep at the mo in her gro-bag in her new style cot. Am planning on bringing her closer to me when she starts to fuss at 4am.

Wish me luck!! smile

GreenMonkies Sun 02-Aug-09 08:43:01

How was it Kitty?

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