19 answers

My 7 Month Still Sleeps with Me

I have recently decided to try and move my daughter to her crib now that she is 7 months. However, she is waking up a lot more and cries a lot more. She is a very happy baby and she falls asleep fast and stays asleep when she is sleeping with me. She has to feel me to fall asleep(hold my finger, me play with her hair etc.)I feel terrible but I need to be able to move around too. I am a single mom so is it really that bad if I continue to let her sleep with me. I feel really bad when she cries because she hardly ever cries.? What should I do?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, just to let you all know.... My daughter is still sleeping with me and I have decided not to move her anytime soon. It eases my mind when she is right by my side. Plus I love waking up and watching her sleep. :) thanks to all that offered responses.

Featured Answers

No, co-sleeping is fine as long as it works for both of you. Don't move her just because someone tells you it's time. If you are both getting needed sleep, then I'd keep doing it.
Good books when the time comes (no CIO advocating):
"Happiest Baby on the Block"
"The Sleep Book"
"The No-Cry Sleep Solution" (also "...for Toddlers and Preschoolers"

More Answers

First I think you need to ask yourself why you think it's time to mover her from your bed. Is it because you feel pressure to from outside sources or because you want your own bed back. If it's because YOU are ready, then by all means go for it. If you're not ready and are doing it because of what people say or think, then it's not the right time. My husband and I co-slept with our daughter until she was about 5 months old. We only stopped at that point because she was a little wiggler and a kicker in bed. It was time. She needed more room. We started with the pack and play in our room (which she had slept in off and on since birth). I put it right next to the bed so if she woke up and needed to be nursed or soothed, I could just reach right over. I didn't have to get out of bed. I would let her play in her crib while I was putting laundry away or at various times throughout the day. I made big deal out of how neat her crib was. I don't think she understood the words, but definitely picked up on the enthusiasm! Then I started her on naps in her crib. Once she had napping down, I switched her over at night. It was kind of rough the first few nights. She was still waking up fairly regularly (every 3 to 4 hours) to nurse, so I was up and down a lot. I admit, I still brought her to our bed to nurse, it was just easier on me, and lots of times we would both drift off. No big deal, when I woke up I would put her in her crib. I think it took us about a month to get her to sleep in her crib for a full night.

Let me stress to you that this is a decision only YOU can make. She's your daughter. If other people give you a hard time, tell them to stick it. There is TONS of research that shows how beneficial co-sleeping is. Don't rush things. They're only little once. If snuggling her at night makes you both feel better, then go for it! Just don't let anyone make you feel bad for the decisions that you make when it comes to raising YOUR daughter.

2 moms found this helpful

I am a mom of 4 children, and I have to tell you that your life will be much easier if you just let that baby sleep with you. Keep listening to your mothering insticts, you really know more than you think. The trouble starts when you let outside opinion matter too much, or let someone scare you into believing that you are doing something wrong. Fear shouldn't base important parenting decisions! Human babies need touch, your baby will be smarter because of the extra touches she gets all night from you. You and your baby will sleep better knowing that you are together. Your breathing actually reminds your baby to breath. Cribs are not always as safe. You are doing the right thing!

2 moms found this helpful

My 13 year old still likes to sleep with me. Lots of people let their kids sleep in their beds. I wouldn't worry about it. If you are feeling cramped, you could always put her crib next to your bed and put her in it after she falls asleep. That way if she wakes up you can let her know you are right there.

They grow up so darn fast...my advice is to enjoy every minute you can with her.

1 mom found this helpful

Goodness--I'm still trying to keep my 3-yr. old in her bed and all 3 of my kids pretty-much slept with my husband and I for the first year or so even though they always started the night in their own bed.

Most parents I know or that have talked about this topic typically have had their kids in bed with them in some form or another until about ages 2-3. That's about the time it seems developmentally that they're ready to be on their own. Granted, there are plenty of acceptions I'm sure and plenty more people who do the "cry it out" method or the "no cry method" (which somehow for us always ended in tears anyway).

So, good luck and just know that this is perfectly normal behavior for your sweet, little one. Besides, cuddling in bed together can be special time together since you work full time.

J.

1 mom found this helpful

No! Cosleeping is not bad! It is a completely healthy and beautiful thing that is common around the world. Here are some great links:

http://www.naturalchild.org/james_mckenna/

http://babyreference.com/Cosleeping&SIDSFactSheet.htm

http://www.llli.org/Release/cosleeping.html

In addition, Dr. Sears and Martha Sears, author "The Baby Book" and "The Nightime Parenting Book" also support cosleeping as normal and safe.

1 mom found this helpful

First off, I'd like to say hats off to you for being a single mom. You have a full plate! My DH has started his new job in Evansville 10 weeks ago, and we have seen him maybe 10 - 12 days of it! So I have even a more deep appreciation for single parents. I don't have family in Cincinnati (which is where we live now), so it has been very rough and I'm not even working full time. But we are all moving next week to evansville even though our house hasn't sold yet.

Anyways, both our daughters really didn't start transitioning to their own crib until about 10 to 14 months. We started with nap times, then just at the beginning of bedtime. We would make a little bed on the ground next to the crib and have our hand in the crib because they liked that contact too. We would have white noise (fan) and soft music playing. It took a few days of them crying alittle at first until they realized we weren't going to leave and that we were staying in the room too. once they fell asleep, then we would sneak out of their room. Then if they'd wake up, we'd just bring them to bed. And then work slowing on getting them back into bed as time went on. We'd lay next to them on the floor by their crib until they'd fall back to sleep. It took several months before they were fully transitioned into their own crib. Our #2 took longer, since I really didn't start until she was 14 months old, and DH was out-of-state. I was tired all the time, but we both of adjusted and sleeping well. They both wake up from time to time, but I'm able to get them back to sleep just fine. The 15 month old is usually just thursty, so I keep a sippy cup of water close by.

1 mom found this helpful

I am in the same situation with my daughter who is 8 months old. I actually just put my pack-n-play (that is also a co-sleeper) next to my bed and started her sleeping in that. I think she needs more room to move around when she sleeps so I think eventually she will like it, but last night was her first night and it was REALLY hard. She kept waking up and crying because she thought I wasn't there. I had to pat her back and talk to her and she went back to sleep. I agree with the other mom that commented...you have to do what is best for you and your daughter. Like I said, I think my daughter is feeling crowded but if your daughter is comfortable with you then let her sleep there. Just remember...they are only little once! Good Luck!

A.

1 mom found this helpful

Try putting her crib next to your bed and touching her through the slats or maybe give her a scarf that smells like you to hold. That may be enough. I wouldn't worry about her sleeping with me unless I was planning on having a new man in my life. He might resent it. It also can make intimacy an issue. Our youngest sleep with us and he would sleep right throu our encounter's but that was his Dad so it never became an issue.

When our kids were little occasionally they would sleep with us but not alnight, and when we put them in their crib we would put them on their tummys but now all this is a no no. I have noticed a lot more babies being rolled onto and the child dieing. I guess we just have to use our own judgements and do what is right for us. I imagine it is as hard for you as it is for your baby to be alone. Try putting a pillow on each side of her and see if she feels more like it is mommy laying next to her. Good Luck

Hi S.,

There's nothing wrong with co-sleeping if that is what works for you. It sure helps a lot if you are breastfeeding. I got a lot of encouragement from the book "The Family Bed" by Tine Thevenin. She's still very small, she'll want her own space eventually. My kids slept with one (usually me) or both of us for a long time (I loved it), and it didn't end all at once. In fact they still like to cuddle sometimes and they are teens now.

Try one of those co-sleeper things that attaches to the bed if you are feeling cramped.

Kudos to you for being a working single mom, and for buying a house!

Listen to your heart, you will know what to do.

K. Z.

S., I wouldn't worry about it a bit. They're only young for a little while, and you both need your rest. If that's what works, go for it. I'm also a single mom, and both of my kids (now 10 and 12) slept in with me for quite a while. My daughter was 5 when she was ready to move to her own room, and my son was a bit younger than that. I was happy to have him in his own bed, because he's an active sleeper and kicked and moved a lot. Not the least bit restful for me! I did have a toddler bed set up in my room for them when they wanted to come in after that.

No, co-sleeping is fine as long as it works for both of you. Don't move her just because someone tells you it's time. If you are both getting needed sleep, then I'd keep doing it.
Good books when the time comes (no CIO advocating):
"Happiest Baby on the Block"
"The Sleep Book"
"The No-Cry Sleep Solution" (also "...for Toddlers and Preschoolers"

Dear S.,
When my daughter was 7m old, she would wake up and I would nurse her. Her Dr. said let her cry and she will go back to sleep. I did that and it was the best thing I did. I suggest that you let her cry. It will be very hard at first. It will seem like you are neglecting her but you are not! Only let her sleep in her own bed. When she is sick lay in her room but don't put her in your bed because when she is older it will be more difficult to stop it. L. J

Everyone has their own opinion on these things, but I treasure the time that I have spent sleeping with my sons in the bed. I love that they want to cuddle with me, hold my hand, etc. My sons are 3 1/2 and almost 2 now. I've been transitioning them into their own beds more and more, but they still sleep in our bed about half the time. Eventually all kids end up in their own beds. I don't know any teenagers that still sleep with their parents, do you? :) If you are working a lot and have precious little time to spend with her, I would make the most of every minute! Do what you know in your heart feels right.

Hi, S.,
I can't tell whether you want her in your bed, still, or not. (?) You said that you want to be able to move around, too. So, if you don't mind her sleeping with you, and you just want more space, I'd say get one of those co-sleepers that attaches to your bed.

I know it is hard to get a good nights sleep when you can't stretch and move around like you want - my babies didn't get out of my bed til they were 18 - 24 months. (Oh, who am I kidding?! My soon to be 10 year old came in and slept with me last night! I don't know when they grow out of it! :) )

But, the two things you need to know is that 1) there is NOTHING wrong with your baby sleeping with you, and 2) there is NOTHING wrong with you deciding you need your own bed.

Decide if you feel you are not getting good enough rest, and go from there. If you are okay in that department, enjoy having that precious girl sleep with you! If not, purchase one of the co-sleeper things so she's out of your bed, but still next to you. And if you can't afford to purchase one of those, take heart in knowing that eventually, they like their space, also, and will move over to their side of the bed! :)

Blessings to you, and peace in the knowledge that whatever you decide, it will be the right decision for the two of you.
J.

My daughter is 7 years old and just stopped sleeping with me. Honestly, I kind of miss snuggling with her in the middle of the night.

I still go in her room and snuggle with her on her bed until she falls asleep and I have told her several times that if she wakes up and is scared for some reason or just can't get back to sleep that she is more than welcome to come in with me.

I would not change anything at all about co-sleeping with my daughter...she slept with me and my husband from the time she was a newborn.

If co-sleeping does not bother you then I don't see any reason to stop.

Good luck and I believe that if you follow your mommy instinict and ignore what outside sources are telling you (except for those of us on mamasource of course :o) ) then you will make the right decision.

Good luck.

Try putting an item of clothing with your smell on it on a stuffed animal. Maybe if she cuddles it she will feel you are near. Good Luck
L.

All i can say is i am so sorry lol I understand completely. I allowed my oldest to sleep with me because her father was activated and went to Iraq.Its SO SO hard to make that move.. I was finally able to make it with her when she turned 4 :( I did it slowly.. I started out with either sleeping in her room where she can see me or i allowed her to stay in a lil bed in my room for like a week to get use to being alone in the bed... then when she got use to that she was fine.. she would still have problems and wake up alot and try to get in my bed but i had to be strong and say no. it breaks your heart i know :) but since your baby is alot younger... it depends... i tried to let her cry it out when she was tht young but i couldnt bear it so i decided to just wait till she was older so she would understand... its pretty much when do you want to fight your battle? If you as her mom are not ready to give up that specail time because you have so much on ur plate..then dont! who cares what other people think or say as long as you and her are happy... Do it when your ready..if your not ready then wait..nothing wrong with that :)

The real problem for your daughter is that she doesn't know how to put herself to sleep without you there. Kids do wake up in the middle of the night, and if they have to have you to get back to sleep, you're going to find yourself soothing your 10 year old back to sleep several times a night! New babies do not have the ability to sooth themselves, but by 7 months old, your daughter is fully capable of doing so. She just doesn't know how.

It sounds like you are already able to get her to sleep in her crib, but are having trouble with her waking up throughout the night. So try rocking her (or however you put her to sleep) until she is VERY drowsy, but not fully asleep, and then set her in her crib. If she begins to wake herself up, pat her, stroke her hair, let her hold your finger, or do whatever soothes her, but do not remove her from the crib. Also, very importantly, say nothing, and do not make eye contact. At 7 months, she may fuss if she knows you will give her attention for it. If she finds that you will not play with her during the night, she'll be less eager to wake up.

If she wakes up and cries while you are soothing her, pick her up and repeat the rocking process as often as necessary until she is asleep in her crib (but make sure she is at least slightly awake when you set her down). If she goes to sleep but then wakes up later, let her cry for 5-10 minutes and give her a chance to put herself to sleep. Some people say to let them cry longer, but I've never been able to let my baby cry for more than 10 minutes, so do what feels right to you.

At first, you're probably going to have to do this several times a night, so be prepared. Eventually, you should be able to set your baby down when very drowsy and walk away without soothing her in her crib, and have her put herself to sleep. This may take several weeks to accomplish. You should also eventually see that while she may continue to wake up several times during the night (and even talk to herself during these awake periods), she will put herself back to sleep without you.

Best of luck! I went through this with my son when he was 3 months old, and I think it's hard at any age. I decided I was comfortable moving my son out of my room when he was a little over 3 months old because I wanted to improve my sleep, and I didn't want to have to hold him through his naps every day anymore. I still get plenty of snuggle time when I rock him, and I'm still really proud when he puts himself to sleep! It takes a little while to get it down, but once you do, it's worth it!

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