Anyone Else Co-sleeping?

Updated on September 13, 2006
B.J. asks from Commerce City, CO
43 answers

I know this is a heated subject, but it happens to work well for our family. (Don't worry, my husband and I are very happy.) I'm wondering if anyone one else has done this sucessfully. Did your kids actually decide when the time was right to sleep in their rooms? Was it difficult to stop breastfeeding? Looking for support. Thank you in advance!

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K.

answers from Phoenix on

My 2 1/2 year old co-slept with us until almost 8 months, when I weaned him. The easiest way to wean (no engorgement)is to simply cut out 1 breastfeeding per day- replace with bottle or solids- for 1 week. Then next week, cut out another and so on. To stop the co-sleeping painlessly (at least for the baby!) start with naps in babies own bed/room. When you get to one breastfeeding a day make it just before bedtime, sit in babies room and then put the down for the night. I have a 22yr old, 18yr old and the baby and it worked like a charm every time! Good luck.

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K.L.

answers from Albuquerque on

My son is 4 and he still sleeps with me. Partly because i was an older Mom when i had him and wanted to hold him 24/7. Also because my now ex would get upset when he cried. Now that his Dad and I are divorced he really likes to be held. And i enjoy the comfort too. He has his own room and bed that he relaxes in at night but comes to me when he is ready to go to sleep.

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P.Z.

answers from Fort Collins on

Yes! We have an 8 1/2 month old son and also co-sleep. We LOVE it! :) I breastfeed, so it's wonderful being able to feed Jack at night w/o waking up too much. I also have been married nearly 7 years and my husband loves having Jack with us as well. :) I'm not ready to stop... I don't know when I will be either. We all sleep so well together.

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C.S.

answers from Phoenix on

I am co sleeping with my 7 1/2 month old daughter. She sleeps on a body pillow bolstered on either side. For safety reasons, we don’t share a blanket- we each have our own. We love it. I also co slept with my son, Rio, who is now 2 1/2 years old. He decided he wanted his own bed before we stopped breastfeeding. He was about a year old (we got the bed for his birthday present and he loved the idea!). We put the bed next to ours in the master bedroom even though he had a room of his own. He felt much more secure that way. He didn't start sleeping in his bed right away, it took a few weeks to warm up to the idea (much like a potty chair) but then he decided he wanted to be a big boy. He just crawled in next to me when he wanted some milk or a snuggle. I let him set the pace. He fully weaned himself at 15 months which was perfect because I had become pregnant again. However, he didn't start sleeping in his own room until the baby came. Then he just couldn't stand to be woken up by her cries. He is very sensitive and her crying upsets him. Anyway, my husband slept in our son's room on an air bed for about 4 months after the baby was born and that helped Rio tremendously. My husband was worried his alarm might wake the baby as he gets up very early for work. Also he didn't want to be woken by her because he needs all the sleep he can get! After that, we decided to get a long twin mattress to put beside our king to make one giant bed. Now there is room for all of us, even Rio when he needs the extra attention (although he hardly ever wants to sleep in our bed anymore) and nobody needs to feel crowded or fearful of squishing baby. I just can't imagine putting my baby in a crib away from me, let alone putting her in a separate room. She's just not ready, and I'm in no hurry. I love having my warm little sleeping baby right next to me; within arm's reach. Well, sorry this post is so long. I hope it helps!
C.
P.S. Dr. Sears states in his book “Attachment Parenting” that co sleeping reduces the possibility of SIDS. On top of being great read it helps validate all of those ‘mommy instincts’ that society tells us to ignore.

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G.M.

answers from Albuquerque on

Hi, I gave birth almost 5 months ago to our 8th child; we are co-sleeping with him, just like we did with all of the others. I'm originally from Guam, and co-sleeping is part of my culture, and is pretty common in other cultures in that part of the world. I just breastfed until my body couldn't keep up w/ the demand; my baby didn't have any adjustment issues. Yes, all the kids just decided to sleep in their rooms (or in the living room, another cultural thing)when they were ready. Some were ready sooner than others, sometimes we wake up with the older kids in bed, like when they are sick.

I had a talk with the kids' pediatrician about co-sleeping--apparently the current APA guidelines state it is associated with a higher likelihood of SIDS, but when my next youngest daughter (now 5) was a baby, the APA was saying that co-sleeping reduced the chance of SIDS. Whatever. The way I look at it, each child and each family is different and the APA guidelines are just that--guidelines. You need to do what is right for your family right now, and try not to worry too much about being "odd" or not doing things right. Even with whatever you are doing now, you'd do things differently with every other kid you might have in the future, because each child will have a different temperament and will mature at slightly different rates. So you'd start feeding solid foods at different times, potty training at different times, etc.

Don't worry, kids are pretty resilient, and as long as you are loving your daughter to bits and paying attention to what she is trying to "tell" you developmental-wise, and as long as you don't try to force her to do something before she's ready (although it's okay to try to introduce her to new things!), she'll turn out just fine.

Honestly, I think out of all the mothers I know, the ones who are the most anxious (and with the most difficult children) are the ones who are so hung up on what this or that child expert says that they force their children to do things just to keep up with the guidelines. I hope I don't sound like I'm bragging because none of my children are perfect, but my kids (especially my older ones) all are comfortable talking to me about anything, even drugs, alcohol, and sex. Some of my friends have problems with their kids sneaking out, lying, getting drunk, etc. and I don't. My kids are pretty responsible, respectful, and considerate of others (at least when they aren't at home!) They love each other and protect each other when I'm not around, and they are comfortable enough with making their own decisions and deciding when they are ready to do things that they aren't slaves to peer pressure. They also speak up when they see someone being treated unfairly.

I think it's (in part) because we let our kids develop at their own rate while letting them remain "babies" for as long as they need to; co-sleeping is part of this equation. Do I really think that co-sleeping makes such a difference? Yes, I do. I don't think it's the co-sleeping per se but the underlying foundation of respecting you child's needs, nurturing them when they need it and respecting their personhood by allowing them to mature at their own rate. Anyway, sorry for being so long and rambling, and I hope this helps.

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E.C.

answers from Denver on

I had always heard it's not good to have your children sleep with you, but that could be completely wrong. My daughter slept in our room until she was about 3 months old and from then on slept in her crib until she was a little over two. It was hard for her at first and me as well, but after a couple of night she was sleeping better at night and enjoyed playing by herself when she woke up first thing in the morning. I also, got a lot better of sleep after the initial heartbreak. She loved her big girl bed until I went back to work full time about six months ago and wanted to sleep with us. So my aunt gave me the idea that if she wouldn't sleep in her room without a drama filled night to have her sleep in our room in a sleeping bag on the floor. My sister has always had her first son sleep with them in their bed and struggled until about two months ago for him to sleep in his own room and he's four now. I would definitely suggest you try and move her especially if you are planning on having more children. She is still young enough that she won't remember crying for a couple nights and young enough that she will give in more quickly versus when she hits the age of two.

As far as the breastfeeding goes, doctors opinions vary on how long you should actually breastfeed, but my girlfriend is a nutrionist and says there really is no nutrional value that they get from brest milk after the age of one that they don't get from milk or soy milk. It really wasn't that hard for me when I weaned my daughter. Physically, I think my body was ready to back to normal, so I adjusted fine in that department. For about two weeks I only fed her at night so she got used to having milk during the day. I probably could have stopped all at once, but I think for my comfort I stayed on nights. I didn't realize how much I enjoyed the bonding until it was gone, but just think of all the different ways you will have to bond with her in the upcoming days. My daughter is four now and there are so many great milestones and quality thigs you will bond together with her, Just think about those times to come. Good luck and I hope it helps!

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M.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi B.! I have had 3 kids and all of them, including the one currently sleeping now, have all slept with my husband and I since they were born. As newborns we had the bassinette at our bedside but because I would nurse, it was more comfortable to nurse while lying down with the baby. This made for an easy and wonderful transition from hospital to home. i would lay them in their bassinette at the start of the night and nurse them in bed with me. If the abay was really asleep, then I was able to lie them back down in the bassinette. If kind of fussy, I would just keep them with me in bed. My oldest daughter made it clear to me at around 20 months that she wanted her own bed. She saw a kids bed at a store one day and hopped right in so we took it home and it was easy as pie. Same with my 2nd daughter. She slept with us up until she was about 1 year and a half. She decided one day that she didn't want to sleep in our bed anymore and kept putting her blankie and pillow on the floor so a new toddler bed it was. :) My 3rd is now 19 months old. And he too is starting to show signs of wanting to sleep alone. He doesn't let me hold him how I usually did with him tucked in by my tummy and both of us on our sides. He wants to have his own space and so we know it's time. Both my husband and I were raised in cosleeping houses and so are totally for it because we know that our kids let us know when they're ready just like we let out parents know. Nursing is a breeze and everybody gets more sleep in our home. Good luck to you! :)

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T.H.

answers from Phoenix on

HI B.,

The first night in the hospital with my son (almost 3) I put him in bed with me. But, he grew to be a child who did not sleep well in bed with us (as much as I hated that!). But, he was not a good sleeper at all and every little noise or movement woke him. Now with my daughter, 6 months, she is still in bed with us, or in the bassinet next to the bed if I decide to move her after nursing her to sleep. But, if she wakes in the middle of the night she comes right into bed with me to nurse. I think my DH would like that to change but I love her sleeping right next to me. She never cries for a feeding, I can just feel her move and know she needs to eat, I am more in tune with her that way. I also have used a baby sling with both kids and it has been a lifesaver with two now. Just go with your gut, if you feel like you need to transition at some point, give it a try, if it is not working out, try something else. There is no right or wrong way to parent unless you are going against your instincts or your child's temperment. Don't let others make you feel as if you need to put your child in a bed sooner than you (and she) wants to! Best of luck!!!

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S.

answers from Albuquerque on

I was avid about my first son staying in his crib and then bed. My hubby coaxed him into ours after about 2 and a half years. I think the most important thing is to get them into their own bed/room by the time they're 3 and a half because everything changes at 4 (he's 4 now) and getting them out not only becomes harder, but makes it harder for the husband and wife. Their memories start developing so if it's a battle it's likely to be one they can remember and they simply become less flexible. Let's just say that now hubby wants big boy in his own bed but it's going to take a whole lot more time and effort than if we made sure he stayed there just a little bit earlier. And with my second I was lazy about weaning so now that the little one is 1 and a half, it's proving slightly more difficult, with lots more crying than I'd care for. I think you should start weaning about 9 months if not to a sippy cup then to a bottle. They're more adamant every few months!!!

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C.G.

answers from Colorado Springs on

I have a daughter that is almost 4 and she slept with my husband and until she was 3. We put her bed in our room and then she finally decided she would sleep in it after a struggle of course. It was very hard to stop breastfeeding her. I breastfed for a year and half. She used it as comfort so it was hard to ween her. I eventually did by trying to give her water at night or I just would not let her breastfeed and she would cry a little and fall back asleep.

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R.

answers from Phoenix on

We co-slept with both of our children. Our son (now 6) decided to move into our "Guest room" bed at 18 months. We said "my bed" and we went that day to pick out Elmo sheets. Our daughter (3.5) chose to move into her brothers room (despite a beautiful room she loves to play in) at 2. She sleeps in the bottom bunk. She will still join us around 5:30 am every so often. Our son nursed until the day his sister was born (his choice to give her milk) and she nursed till 3. Never would have planned it that way and of course it was far less frequent and regular. Enjoy these moments as they pass quickly. Do not let the views of others change your instinct. Have fun!

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M.

answers from Santa Fe on

We fell into co-sleeping when my daughter was diagnosed with a severe form of hypoglycemia at 5 months and we had to wake far more often than expected to feed, check blood sugar levels and give medicine. Before that our daughter had slept in a pack-n-play next to us, but we were getting ready to move her to a crib in her own room. We ended up co-sleeping until it became obvious that none of us were contributing to the good sleep patterns of the others. This was at about 14 months. At that point we moved her to her own room, but to a futon, never to a crib. It was difficult for the first month and I slept with her more than with my husband. In the end it worked out well, and despite other behavior problems sleeping is rarely one of them.

Breastfeeding continued until she self-weaned at 18 months.

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L.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi B.~

Actually I never did co-sleep with our children - I figured it would be hard to transition them over to their own beds and rooms. Although we did put a crib in our room and have the babies sleep in the crib in our room until they were 1 and then transitioned them over to their own rooms. Never had a problem with that. As for breastfeeding - once they were close to 1 - start by using a cup during the day if you haven't already - I started mine on a cup when they were 6 mths but not fully until they were about 11mths old. And only breastfeeding in the AM and PM. Once you have the Dr's okay to give cow's milk starting cutting back on the AM feedings and give them milk... then do the night time feedings as well. IT worked out great for me.

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M.N.

answers from Denver on

Co-sleeping = sleeping in close proximity or arms reach

Its a beautiful thing!!! Co-sleeping is the universal sleeping arrangement.... Follow your daughters lead and when she is ready you will know.

M.

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M.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi B.,

If it's working for you that is great. Carry on doing so and when you want to get your "couple bed" back you will need to go through a smooth transition for your little angel. You can find tips on how to do so in Sears books for example. I THINK it would take time (maybe years/ every child is different) for your child to want by herself to sleep in her own room/ bed (it is so wonderful in a lot of ways to sleep with mom and dad, so why would she want to change that).
As per my own experience, I started co-sleeping when my little boy was about 5-6 months because I was too tired to get up few times a night (he did not sleep well). it was ok but he wanted to nurse constantly and I was not comfortable to sleep. He got use to nursing in order to fall back to sleep and ended up using me as a pacifyer. Also I was never in peace because I was always worried about his safety. So I think none of us got good sleep. I then bought the co-sleeper which kind of helped but did not use it much (only few nights) and then I put my baby back to his crib. To solve the sleeping issues, it took a while as I could not find a method that I felt comfortable with (certainly not the crying out method). I kind of made my own and it worked. So THANK GOD we all now have been sleeping better.
He is a year old this week and I am still breastfeeding him. I am not planning to stop untill he reaches at least 2 years old or when he decides to stop by himself. They eventually do.

I really hope that helped you at least a little. GOOD LUCK! Blessings.

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T.

answers from Tucson on

Hi B.,

I have a sister-in-law that does the "rooming-in" with her family. I think the oldest is now 10 and she just had her fourth child. The oldest stopped rooming in at age 7 or 8 - a bit too long as he could not be without mom or dad when going to bed, i.e. - no babysitters for them. I have nothing against rooming in only that it seems to take away some independence for from the child and separation anxiety seems to start earlier than 15 months and lasts longer. (I've also had some friends that tried the rooming in as well) The main thing is that you AND your husband are getting the proper rest you need. Yes, you'll still be awakened even if the baby was in their own room but you maybe not getting the REM sleep you need. If you are - great keep it up if it's working for you.

Breastfeeding - I found it very hard to quit. My daughter stopped at 9 1/2 months by herself so not my decision and that was a little emotional for me. My son went on a nursing strike at 7 months and never looked back. That was even harder but the main thing that you try everything you can to keep it going and if it doesn't work out than they've gotten what they needed from you and time to move on. I tried to turn it into a positive thing rather than I did something wrong. Some support groups are great like the Lache League but depending on the group they can sometimes be a bit overwhelming and a bit pushy - just my experience.

I hope this helps - everything is stemmed from my experiences and myself being a nurse. Remember take care of you first because if you aren't functioning well then it's all the more difficult to take care of your husband and little one.

Take care,

T.

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R.D.

answers from Denver on

Hi B.,
My youngest son co-slept with me until he decided he was done breastfeeding at about 8 months. After that we put him in his crib in our bedroom and I sat near him with the rail down in a chair until he fell asleep. (I have a friend who kept the crib NEXT to her bed with the rail down to help make this transition.) The transition was not easy for him but I think if you can do anything for 3 days with an infant, it gets much easier after that. Then when he was 12 months old we moved him into his brother's room so he still has someone near him when he sleeps. I think it's great that he has never slept alone! Good luck to you too.

R. D.

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R.G.

answers from Phoenix on

Dear B.,

I am a mom of 4 and have co slept with all of our kids, from our first night in the hospital to still having out three year old coming in somenights to cuddle and hold his favorite warm squishy pillows. For the first three, after the newest sibling came home and they were comfortable with them, there was no fuss into going into Big kid beds. The three year old was harder to get on his own, but when he was comfortable enough in his big kid bed, he stays in his bed. As for nursing, as long as you are comfortable with it, keep it going. It is a source of comfort for little ones, and lets you get some well deserved sleep. Try not to get discouraged, just do what is right for your family, and all of the little details will work out in the end
R.G.

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S.W.

answers from Colorado Springs on

I have a 20 month old who I just got to sleep in his own bed. Yes, it did take some time but, we both sleep better now. I woke several times a night just to make sure he was ok. I do not think there is anything wrong with, I loved it and felt more of a bond with him. I just need better sleep and so did he! :-)

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S.S.

answers from Flagstaff on

Hi B.,
My husband and I co-sleep with our now 2 1/2 year old daughter. Recently she has decided on her own that she wants to go to sleep in her own bed (toddler bed) that is next to our bed. She sleeps in it for most of the night, but wakes up in the early morning (3-4am) and gets in bed with us. I know it is always a controversial subject, but we love it. I am also a pediatric OT specializing in early development, and I have seen nothing but benefit from co-sleeping as well as other attachment parenting-style arrangements (i.e. baby wearing, child-led potty "training", extended breast feeding etc.). Hope this helps!

-Sunny

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R.

answers from Tucson on

I have a 5, 4 and 20 month old. Thank goodness the last one is still in a crib. The two older ones still crawl into bed with us on almost a nightly basis. My four year old was very good about going to bed in her room and sleeping all night until we moved. I think that to break this habit we will just have to return them to their rooms on a consistent basis. I'll start just as soon as I have some extra energy.
I believe that the difficulty in weening a child has much to do with the child. My oldest was fairly easy to ween, around 16months- granted I had a 1 month old I was breastfeeding. My second would be breastfeeding well into her 30's if I let her. I had to go cold turkey in order to get her to stop breastfeeding. She wasn't happy about it but after a month or so she got the message.
I'm still nursing my 20month old and will probably think about weening him at two years. I think that he will be resistent to the idea like his sister was. But after breastfeeding for most of the last six years I'm ready for a break.
Good luck.

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M.C.

answers from Denver on

Hello B.,

I haven't read all of your responses. I just wanted to let you know that it is wonderful that you love your little one so much to invite her into your bed. It is such a natural place for her to be. I am excited to read that you are also breastfeeding and she is almost a year old. Thank you! That is so wonderful.

Namaste,
M.

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M.J.

answers from El Paso on

we cosleep...he is only 4 months so i can't answer the other questions (yet) but just so ya know you arent the only one...i love it...except for when he kicks me in the kidneys to get up at 8am..lol.
M. <><

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J.D.

answers from Phoenix on

i let my kids sleep with me and it is a heated subject with others. the kids do not decide when to start sleeping in their own bed. One of my sons is 7 and he still likes the idea of comfort at night to sleep with me. I let him sleep with us every once in a while but once i do that he wants to do it over and over and over again. you have to make the decision when you want your child to sleep in there own bed and then stick to it because other wise it is just to confusing for them. my husband has an 11 year old daughter and she slept in our bed last night (so age is not an issue). for the most part the kids have to sleep in there rooms i might let them fall asleep on the couch and then take them to bed however once they get use to it and they are on a schedule it is fine. i know it is hard sometimes being a mom that wants to make them happy all the time and feel comfort but it does not teach them independance and other things. the earlier you have them start sleeping in their own room the better but it will be tough for both you and your daughter. just be strong and remember the out come is always worth it.

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A.H.

answers from Phoenix on

co-sleeping??? Well we did it with bith kids ages 3 and 20 mos, but not exactly by choice. With my son we were in a 1 bedroom so he slept with us till 14 mos. He so was not thrilled with being moved then with my daughter we were in a 2BR but my son had the other room so she slept with us till 14 mos. We had a 4 mos period where we stayed with his sister so at that point we were all four in a king bed-it was a bit crowded! But we moved back to our own place and at 2 1/2 moved my son to a toddler bed then my daughter to her own crib. They do occasionally sleep with us but are doing good with their beds.

Breastfeeding? Oh boy my son was breat fed till 10 mos becaus I got pregnant with my daughter when he was like 7 mos so I had to wean him cause I was so exhausted but I did it day first then night and it wasn't bad at all. Now my daughter is 20mos and I just weaned her! We have moved alot since she was 9 mos old like 3 times so I breast fed her more for comfort than her actually needing it. For a while now she just breast fed like morning and night, when she is mad or sick so jsut comfort. I kind of limit the feeding times and she went 2 days on her own without wanting it so I kind of ran with that. She has tried to breast feed a few times but I just occupy her with something. Well thats what I did. Good luck!!

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T.D.

answers from Phoenix on

My husband and I have a family bed with our 3 year old and 4 month old....They have always slept with us. It just feels 'right'.

We have a king size bed with a twin next to it. I breastfed my oldest around the clock until I was about 4 months pregnant, he was 27 months. Weaning was very easy. When a child can communicate and understand, they are less likely to be afraid. I first weaned him at night and was nursing him only before bed for a week or so. When we stopped the last feeding, I told him that it was now time for stories before bed, he responded well.

We're now ready to put a space between our beds, but I don't plan on moving him out of our room any time soon. My husband and I love having the kids with us.

There is some very good reading material out there. My favorite is, "The Family Bed", by Tine Thevenin. There are even books for fathers.

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C.H.

answers from Colorado Springs on

Hi B.,

When our oldest was 1 1/2 we were renting a 1 bedroom house to save money at the time and although her crib was in our room, she would not go to sleep unless it was with me in our bed (my husband worked nights) so it worked then. After we moved and had another baby it wasn't working so great anymore, but we would let her fall asleep in our bed, and then we would move her to her own bed in her own room. Although she would get up in the middle of the night, we just had to escort her back to bed. Your little one is still so young, I think you should enjoy it, as long as your husband doesn't mind, but I would suggest in the next 6 months or so introducing her to a toddler bed, because after 2 years old they can become very stubborn and she might not want to try something new...then eventually you have a 3 year old kicking you in the middle of the night, and it DOES become crowded then! The key is finding the right time to introduce her to her own bed before she is too old and its too late, because then it really becomes a headache. Our little girl was almost 4 before she would fall asleep in her own bed, and I know its because we let her sleep with us for too long. Really, its whatever works for your family, but that is my experience with co-sleeping!
C.

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E.

answers from Colorado Springs on

Hi B.- We have a 4 year old girl and 18 month boy, and we co-sleep. The crib is in our room, and baby sleeps part-time in there, part-time in our bed. When our daughter was just over 2 1/2, she announced that she wanted to sleep in her own room, just after the birth of our son. She had previously been sleeping on a crib matress on our floor. Sometimes we still get joined by her, and have a snug full-sized bed with four of us in it! I weaned her at night at 20-22 months (that late because she had medical challenges), and fully weaned at 28 months. The best advice I have found is that if any situation, no matter how odd it may seem to others, is working for you and your family, and everyone is happy and well-rested, then nothing needs to change. In other words, don't feel pressured to do something just because society, friends or family tells you you should. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions! Good luck. E.

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A.

answers from Albuquerque on

Co slept with my first two and will with the next. We didn't go much past a year for various reasons, including a husband starting grad school and being up late studying. But we did move them to a bed on the floor where I could lay down with them at night, esp. to nurse. So we parents made the decision to move them to their rooms, but it was always a gradual process. I never had any problems weaning. With no prompting by me, they both stopped around 21 or 22 months in a very stress-free way. You are not alone. Lots of parents do this. You can probably find lots of co-sleeping families through the various groups and classes here:
http://www.bodymindandspiritabq.com

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T.R.

answers from Denver on

My son is now 18 months and he sleeps in his own bed (STILL not all night, but loves his own bed and his own space). However, we coslept until he was almost one and I LOVED it! I read all the literature for the people for and against it. (Yes, people against it are REALLY against it), and loved that I was so close to my baby, bonding and the whole thing about the lowered risk of sids cause they tune in with the sound of your breathing, etc. The reason we ended up stopping was because he moved too much, he loved to roll over and turn around and kick and all that. We dealt with that for a while, but then he started to wake up every time we moved or anything and it just became too much, we were all up all night. I was terrified to put him in his crib, but he actually did fine, he has never slept all the way through the night but he loves his crib and his room... he goes in there and says please when he wants to take a nap! The best I can say for you is if you are all happy then let it go as long as it works... you will be glad for the time you had when she is 15 and wouldn't sleep in your bed if you paid her!!! HA HA!!! My aunt and uncle coslept with my cousin as well and one day, when she was about 3 she just randomly decided she wanted to sleep in her own bed, and did and has ever since. I think when it is time you will know, or she will tell you, and until then as long as you are all sleeping fine enjoy it while it lasts!!

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H.J.

answers from Albuquerque on

I am A single mother of a 2yr old son, who I am still breast feeding. I'm planning to stop beast feeding when he turns 3 and hopefully move him into his own room. I'm not sure how to do either one. do you have any advice?

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E.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi there I co sleep too! I have a 6 month old (second child) it makes like OH SO EASY for us LOL Im soo lazy and dont want to get up all night and she and I are attached at the hip literally I swear.. I sling her too! Its works great for us! Now when breastfeeding and going to her own room time comes who knows how that will pan out! Im going to stop nursing at 1 yr!

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S.N.

answers from Denver on

I BF my 7 yr old until she was 2 and she slept in our bed as well. She slept in our bed on and off until she was about 5, and it worked for her. My 2 yr old was BF until she was 8 months old and hated sleeping in our bed, she started sleeping in her crib at about 6 months. It depends ont he child and they will lead you as to what works with them.

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D.Y.

answers from Denver on

Hi there. My first daughter never slept with my husband and I when I were married, we did have her crib in our room and then her toddler bed next to ours also in the same room. She had her own room the whole time with a twin of her own but never slept in there till she was almost two. When she would be in deep sleep my exhusband would carry her to her room and put her in her bed until finally she knew to sleep in her room and we got rid of the toddler bed in our room. She never asked to sleep with us because she never had.

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L.K.

answers from Phoenix on

If your daughter is not even 1 year and still breastfeeding, I wouldn't worry about co-sleeping - especially if you and your husband are comfortable with the arrangement. Breastfeeding is an important aspect of security for children and bonding for both mom and child. Continue as long as you would like.

My children were both breastfed and transitioned to their big beds (twin bed) when they were almost 2 yrs old. They are now 8 and 5 yrs and sleep through the night for the majority of the time. There is occasion where they wake up in the middle of the night for whatever reason and are welcome to come sleep with Mommy. Last Friday, my daughter had a sleepover at camp and since my son missed his sister and going to bed at the same time, he and I had our own sleepover/slumber party and we co-slept on a mattress in the living room!! He loved it!

L.

About me -
L. Kandell, MS, RD, IBCLC
I am a registered dietitian specializing in pediatric nutrition and an international board certified lactation consultant. I have been in practice for over 15 years and love what I do! I have 2 kids, a daughter (8yrs) and a son (5yrs).
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D.B.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi B.,
My son slept with me until he was 3, first 2 years with the crib sidecar against the bed and the last few months on a mattress next to me. A new house and new car bed helped the transition to his room although he still didn't sleep through the night for a while. I also breastfed just over 2 years.(we had some difficulty weaning but managed) I know most of this is not popular in our society but I have a very well adjusted, healthy and confident almost 15yo son who still likes mom to lay down and talk at night. When they are teenagers this time to connect is priceless so I would never have done it differently when he was little.

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R.R.

answers from Denver on

Hi B.,

I am cosleeping with my 3 month old daughter. Unsure if we will continue because advice from others report much better sleep for Mom when baby is not in the bed. There is very little written about this subject for our reference. Wish I could help you but you are further along than I. Thought I'd offer my support, though!

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C.B.

answers from Phoenix on

Yes, most children will eventually decide to sleep on their own, but many will also decide to "sneak in" with you on occasion. Just make sure to make it a big deal (like letting the little one pick out their own bed, or buying special bedsheets), and to let them know that you are just a door away. As for breastfeeding - first of all, start pumping and freezing baggies of milk now to thaw out when you stop. Also, start having some pumped milk in a bottle so that Daddy can have "nursing time" (Nuk nipples work best, they are most comfortable in baby's mouth and have varied flows). Then, when you ARE ready, giving a bottle at bed times or nighttime feedings for the first week, and then switching all feedings over (but cuddling your child in the nursing position), will do the trick. Odds are, once they find out that the bottle is more mobile than Mommy, they will stop. (A child will still tend to reach down your shirt and/or attempt to go back to nursing when sick or stressed, though, so make sure to give extra cuddles during the day.)

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C.R.

answers from Abilene on

I have an almost 9mo old and he still sleeps with us. Well kinda. He starts the night in his own room but when he wakes up to nurse agian I just bring him back with us. He moves around alot now in his sleep and thinks I'm an all night buffet. If you get any good advice let me know.
I'm sleeping like I did when he was 6wks old.

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C.K.

answers from Santa Fe on

I have a 7 year old and a 2 year old. I breastfed my 7 year old until she was two and a half. I always had in the back of my mind thoughts of when she would want to give it up. One day, she just stopped on her own. That is my experience. I wouldn't worry too much about it. We moms worry enough. She will stop when she's ready. My 7 year old also slept with us until she was 5 years old. Some of it, for me, was fear of her rolling on her stomach in a crib when she was really young and dying of SIDS. But at five, she was ready to be a big girl and have her own room. I remember reading in a book by John Grey that the U.S. is the only country where kids don't sleep with their parents. My two year old still sleeps with us. I breastfed her for 8 months, but stopped producing milk all of a sudden so the breastfeeding issue was solved on its own. I have learned, despite my fears, that things work out exactly as they're supposed to. Just being a good parent has been enough and the rest takes care of itself. I don't care what anyone thinks of my kids sleeping with us. My five year old still crawls in with us all the time. I love it. I want her to feel close and safe to us because that is not what I had growing up. I would never have dreamed of crawling into bed with my parents. That was just not the way they were. Hope that helps!

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C.

answers from Fort Collins on

Hi B.!

I am a mother of three very healthy well adapted children and I did co-sleeping as well. Just as you said, it is an often heated subject and there are always those who frown upon it. But as long as you are taking all necessary precautions to keeping the baby safe, i.e. no pillows or bedding in the way of the child that would keep her/him from breathing, etc., then I don't think there is any reason why you should feel guilty or ashamed of your decision. I was sooo exhausted in the beginning with my first born...and when I'm tired I'm extremely grumpy and a pain to live with. It was affecting everyone, including my baby. When I started co-sleeping, I became more restful and was much happier. And you know what they say, when mommy is happy, everyone is happy! I nursed my first until she was about 10 months, and my second at about 9 months, and I'm currently nursing my third (she's 4 months old.) When they stopped nursing is about the time that I was able to make the transition into the crib. The first night was the hardest, but it didn't take but a few nights before they were going to bed with little effort. There are resources out there for you to look into that supports your decision to co-sleep. One that I bought is what convinced me and helped me let go of the guilt and shame that some people (society) makes you feel...it is called The Baby Book by Dr. William Sears, M.D, and his wife (a nurse) Martha Sears, R.N. They have 8 children and they used co-sleeping as well. It is a great resource! I highly recommend it! Good luck to you and your family and here's hoping you'll all be sleeping soundly very soon!

C.

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T.

answers from Phoenix on

Greetings B.,

My husband and I co-slept with my first daughter and now with our newborn second daughter (1mon)! I thoroughly enjoyed it because I was more confident that my daughter was safe, comforted, bonding, and breastfeeding was a breeze which meant more precious sleep for me. It was not hard to stop nursing my first but she did nurse for about 2.5yrs! I dont know how you feel about that. For the most part she sleeps in her own bed but still comes in the middle of the night. So far we have her comfortable sleeping on a palet in our room. #2 will be our next lesson.

Peace and blessings
T.

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N.M.

answers from Phoenix on

Our daughter slept with us in our room, and she usually ended up in our bed after a middle of the night breastfeeding. If we didn't have a pillow top mattress she might have slept in our bed more frequently, but soft mattresses and infants don't mix, its just not safe.

She did not decide on her own to move out of our room. Instead, when she was 6 months old she began sleeping at longer stretches (sometimes through the night) it was time to move her. It was harder on me than her and if she did sleep through the night I still woke up at 3 in the morning and checked on her. Moving her out of our room did allow our sex life to become more active, and eventually I did get used to her not being with in arms reach. But I slept more soundly not worrying about rolling over her during the night. :)

Weaning was a slow mutual process, a feeding here and a feeding there began to slowly disappear. By the time our little one was about a year she discovered "real" food and was refusing the breast all together. I cried, but she took it in stride. Yet another thing in her life that was harder for me to let go than her. :)

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