M. asks from Houston, TX on October 03, 2006
How Big Is Too Big
My mother says I'm being mean so I thought I would ask. When is a little one too big or too old to be sleeping on mamma? My mother insist that her kids (4 of us) slept on her chest until the age of 4 or 5 (the time the next baby came around). My son is 20 months and sleeps well by himself at night most times but he takes his naps on me until he's sleep enough for me to put him down. But like this morning, he decided he was waking up at 3:45 and wanted to sleep on my chest. I toss and turn all night and sleeping in one position is impossible for me. Plus that's a sudden 25lb gain directly on my chest making it difficult to breath.
I guess he caught me on a bad night. I got him out of his bed and layed him down next to me and that wasn't enough. So I we got up. If I couldn't sleep he wasn't going to either. He walked around here throwing a fit for the longest. Around 4:30 I put him back in his bed and he slept (or at least was quite) for a little while. He got back up around five and that was enough for me. I got him up, turned on all the lights, and made breakfast. He usually wakes up around 7.
I need to know, am I wrong for not wanting him to sleep on me? And if not, how do I get him out of that habit? If so when is a good time to stop?
So What Happened?™
Thank you all who replied. I think he was just having a bad week sleeping. I'm actually getting him back now by waking him up. We just started potty training so I wake him up at 6 to handle his morning business. So look forward to potty questions from me in the near future. So far he's doing pretty well, even staying dry all night. Thanks again.
D. answers from Shreveport on October 08, 2006
This is only for you to decide, cuddling is great too.
My daughter slept on my husbands chest for a long time and now shes 7 and cant sleep by herself, My other two children could go to sleep by them selves because I didnt do that.It is a good bonding, I do not think you are mean for not wanting to do that, the weight is heavy, I find laying close to my 7 year old, on my side, she snuggles to my belly, which is still as big as it was when I was pregant, lol and its a comforting feeling for us both.
K.G. answers from Houston on October 03, 2006
It is crazy that anybody should have to think that a baby should sleep on them or with them. Children, babies, and mama sleep better when given space and room and children need to sleep in thier own bed. You need your sleep and rest and if the baby is not allowing for that rest then you need to change something.
T.M. answers from Lubbock on October 04, 2006
You are doing your best to keep him in his bed. Not every night will be easy. Just stick to what you are doing and he will get it. Once you have him sleeping in his bed the whole night you will be glad you stuck with keeping him there. Long night are part of being a mother to a little one. Just think in a couple of years you will have new issues to deal with. I am a firm believer that your children should be in their own bed. Almost all mothers go through what you are. Stick to your guns and hang in there. Tell your mother you aren't mean, you are just being a good mother. Remind her that it's your child, not her's.
C.W. answers from Houston on October 03, 2006
I know its hard, but remember they are only little once. Cherish all you can while they still want to cuddle and need that feeling of securtiy.
S.S. answers from Shreveport on October 03, 2006
I read your problem this morning and have been thinking about it all day. It just came to me while I was putting my daughter's stuffed animals away that maybe your son is laying on you to hear your heartbeat and that is a comfort to him. When he hears it he knows your there and he can have peace of mind to sleep soundly. Maybe if you got him one of those teddy bears from Toys R Us or somewhere like that that makes a heartbeat sound then he could listen to that at night and it will give him the same safe and secure feeling he gets by sleeping on you. I'm one of those guilty parents of letting her kids sleep with her. I still rock my almost 4 yr old to sleep at night. But they are only little once so I do it to keep them close to me. Hopefully this suggestion will help you out.
C.A. answers from Houston on October 03, 2006
Well I guess you answered your own question. What worked for you mom does not have to work for everyone. You seem to have reached your point of it NOT being okay. I personally do not sleep well when my son crawls in bed with me so I try to keep him in his bed most of the time. You do not have to base your parenting on what is good for someone else. Quite frankly, if my mom told me that I would pop my son over to her at bedtime, go home and get a good night's sleep for myself.....lol. Put him to bed, establish a big guy routine like bath, story, cuddle time then sit in a chair or on the floor and wait a few minutes. I bought my son a "bed buddy" he only gets at bedtime and a fisher price safety flashlight cause it goes off by itself. It also works better for me if I didn't sit on the bed cause it is less disturbing to get up and leave from chair/floor rather than the bed. If he gets up, tell him it is bedtime and put him back in his bed. If he gets up again, put him back in his bed but do not speak to him. Leave the room. If you can do this for a few nights, consistently, he will start to get the idea. When he does stay in bed without intervention, give him a little treat. Yes for a few days you will be severly sleep deprived but this is when you are closer to winning the battle. It will get better.
A.A. answers from San Antonio on October 04, 2006
Wow!!! Each of these responses support your decision as they should. I was taken back that your Mother called you "mean". This is such a negative, hurtful and mean spirited comment. The experts don't support infants/children sleeping with parents and those opinions are based on research, studies and science.
I'm an older single mom that went through fertility to have my twin sons that are now 27 months old. My world is my home and children and I love nothing more than being with them - the closer the better. Yet it was and is very important for me not to set the precedent of them sleeping with me - based on the research and reading I did. I would have loved to have them sleep with me/on me but I didn't allow for what I believe is in their own best interest - not mine.
Best of luck to you, your family and your job search.
J.C. answers from Houston on October 04, 2006
I have to agree with the last 4 or 5 moms. To be a good mom, you need rest. Getting a baby to understand that what mommy says, goes isn't easy, but their protests will not continue forever.
My son, who is 8 now, used to wake up at those wierd hours and would be wiggly, squirmy, and really restless when I'd let him lay with me. I began putting him in his playpen with 1 or 2 very safe toys and let him play himself out. I'd get up in an hour or two and he'd be sleeping soundly, cuddled up with his toy. I found that he slept his best when he slept alone. Oh, one more thing, I had a little white noise air filter fan in his room that really helped get him sleeping well because it blocked out sounds like my snoring or cars going by etc.
You're doing the right thing. My motto when my son was your childs age was.... "try everything".
You'll find that there are people in your life who will always have the opposite opinion of yours. This is your life, your child, and your choice. So, go with your gut.
I'm sure you're doing a great job.
M.F. answers from Houston on October 04, 2006
Get him out of bed with you... this is his first step of independence and he will gain needed confidence from being on his own. Sleeping with your children cripples your mothering throughout the day and gives you no time away from your kids. Even the short night away makes you look even more forward to seeing them in the morning. It also strengthens your marriage by giving you some "down" time with your husband.
Most of all in mothering, follow your heat for you are his mother which is exactly what he needs. You are gifted to mother him in ways no other mother could and so for this reason you must follow your heart and instincts. Your child is so different from anyone else and will develop in his own way. By following your inner wisdom you allow him to develop into himself. You are doing a great job and your heart for him shines through!