When I fell pregnant with Tilly, we built a new room by dividing the lounge and turned it into a little room for Tilly, but I couldn't bear to use it, I didn't like the idea of her being in the room on her own. So for the first few months she slept in the lounge with me in her crib and by the time she was 5 months old, she was sleeping in bed with me. I must of been the only 37 year old in the country to have bed guards on either side of her bed! It became a household joke that I wouldn't fall out of bed.
The fact of the matter was that I was kind of addicted to the co-sleeping, When I had co slept with Kim in her baby years I was told 'you will never get her in a bed!' 'or you are making a rod for your own back' and when people tell you its a bad thing to share a bed with your child, then you believe them. This mean't I lost out on the closeness with the older kids, that I share with Tilly.
The truth of the matter is that I would recommend co-sleeping to anyone as long as you follow some safety procedures to ensure your baby is safe with you.
- Never cover the baby with the duvet, this will overheat baby
- Never smoke in bed with your baby
- Never co-sleep when you have been drinking, the risk of suffocation is higher
- Use bed guards on your bed
- Make sure you mattress is firm because there is a risk of suffocation if the mattress is too soft and the baby sinks in to the mattress.
- Never co-sleep of you are really over tired because you won't wake up if you roll on your baby
- Never co-sleep if your baby was premature or under weight.
- Never leave your baby alone in a bed
- Never sleep on the sofa with your tiny baby as they can easily get trapped in any make gaps or metal work there is.
Obviously as the child gets older, the risks will lower. I enjoyed co-sleeping with Tilly and eventually as Beth moved out, then Zach moved out, it freed up a room. Co-sleeping doesn't just mean that your child develops a real attachment to sharing a bed with you but also that you develop an attachment to sharing a bed with your child. So it gets difficult for you both when you start thinking about putting your child in their own bed. It took me 5 months to get used to the idea of Tilly moving into her own bedroom. Firstly I pushed her bed right next to mine and she slept in it, but could reach out and feel for me in the night. She understood that she was 5 now and none of her friends slept with their mummy.
Many people would say co-sleeping is bad for you and your child, but everyone is different and everyone makes their own choice with their child. The reason I co-slept were because we were over crowded and I had severe PND, so co-sleeping definitely helped me to bond with my little girl.
Do you co-sleep?