Before my little one was born, we were planning on putting her in the cradle in our room, and hadn't even thought about co-sleeping. She really wants to be held while she sleeps, though, and so now I'm thinking that it might be a good idea. Plus, like Geeky said in another post, it's really not safe for her to be sleeping with me on the couch every night!!
I read the article that Geeky posted (thank you!!) but I'm still really clueless about this. Any advice? Also, what products did you use to co-sleep, and where did you get them from?
We also planned to have LO sleep in a cradle in our room. But, with breastfeeding and night wakings, it was easier to bring him into our bed. We got into a routine where I would put him to sleep in the cradle, then when he woke up for the first time at night, I brought him into bed. We didn't have any special equipment--I just put him between me and my husband, and only brought the covers up to about waist-level. He slept well that way, and it was nice--I'd always put him right in the middle, but he would somehow wiggle his way over until he was snuggled up right next to me.
When LO was about 8 weeks old, however, it seemed like he wasn't sleeping as well with us--he started squirming around a bunch and taking a long time to fall asleep. Plus, I wanted to start getting him used to sleeping on his own--I couldn't sleep the greatest with him there, and I wasn't into the idea of co-sleeping for the long term. So, when he wakes up for a feeding in the middle of the night now, I put him back to sleep in the cradle. It's working--he sleeps better, and so do DH and I. I think it's a good routine, and LO doesn't have any trouble falling asleep on his own these days.
So, in summary, I'm glad we co-slept for a couple months, but now I'm glad that he can sleep on his own.
But not for long. I sold it on eBay, pretty soon after that, when we got into our groove.
Just make sure there are no pillows or heavy blankets around her. I had a secure siderail and always slept with her to my right, not between me and hubby. He was aware she was there, but I just felt better when she wasn't flanked by two adults. I slept with my arm out (almost at a 90 degree angle), so I couldn't roll. Since you're not nursing, I don't have to share any of those tips with you.
We co-slept for two weeks because of my c-section. It was just easier not to have to climb out of bed. We put him on the changing pad between us and propped it up on pillows. He slept better elevated (which we found out was an acid reflux problem later). We then moved him to the pack-n-play.
We still co-sleep every once in awhile. Usually on weekends or a bad night he ends up in bed with us. He sleeps between us on a pillow. He starts in the middle of the pillow...but wiggles his way next to me. He has to at least be touching me. I sleep with my arm straight out above him just in case.
Cosleeping is an amazing thing especially those nights when baby is fussy due to many factors (teething, wants mommy close or growths spurt). She stirs, feels you close, snuggles up and is back out.
I pretty much sleep with babies that don't sit up in the crook of my arm so my arm is bent in an L shape and baby sleeps on the lower part of my arm along the length. It really keeps me aware of where their body is and fends off any other person in bed (for us that used the be the other toddler and now it's just daddy although he's pretty aware). With our queen sized bed I had a bed rail on my edge of the bed so he could sleep and nurse on both sides. Then with the king we kept a sidecarred crib (take off the drop down side and attach like a cosleeper) until our older toddler started sleepin in a twin that is pushed up against my side of the bed so there's a buffer there.
Once baby gets mobile enough that he can roll over and sit up that means they can still sleep close but no longer need the arm for protection. Then after about the first year they do fine just next to me or a bit further away. Of course I kept covers off his face (so the arm that was wrapped around him clamped down on that side of the cover so it couldn't move up. They always sleep lower than my pillow and it wasn't until about 2 that Ian started needing a pillow so that wasn't an issue either.
When we finally brought DS home he didn't like the bassinet, though he had been in one at the hospital for five weeks. The first few nights he needed to be held after waking/feeding and I basically slept in a semi-upright position with him in my arm. I would not put him down next to me with DH in the bed.
Now he's better at going back to sleep in the bassinet or better yet the crib in his room, but sometimes I'll let him sleep in the bed next to me in the morning or when we nap during the day.
My biggest concern about DH is not that he'll roll over on him, (though he could) but that he has a body pillow that he takes with him when he rolls from one side to the next, and it could cover the baby. When it's just me and DS, we have a lot more room to spread out and I don't put pillows/covers all over us.
I hated co-sleeping. I don't sleep well unless I can stretch out on my belly, and that's very hard to do when there's a little one in bed with you. My husband, however, loved it. He would sleep with the baby sleeping on his chest. Everyone was happy that way. Hubby is a back sleeper and it didn't keep him awake to have a warm bundle on his chest. I could stretch out and sleep the way I need to sleep. We'd start out the night with the baby sleeping in the bassinette in our room, and at the first waking, he would go fetch the baby (he was a great baby fetcher) for me to nurse. I'd nurse and hand the baby to him for any diaper changes (my babies always seemed to poop at night when they were new), and then he'd sleep with the baby on his chest til the next feeding. They were usually sleeping through the night by about 10 weeks old, but we kept each baby in our room at night (in the crib) til they were about a year old. Ahhh...good times...
We co-sleep for naps, it is the ONLY way i can get him to take a nap, plus, i don't mind the extra sleep anyways! When he is having a hard time falling asleep at night, i will also let him fall asleep in bed with me, and then move him to his crib when i am ready to go to bed, about 4 hours later. Sometime i will also dreamfeed at that time.
I LOVE sleeping with him, especially now, when he is sleepy hw lays there staring at me rubbing his head/ear with one hand and my face with the other, as he gets more and more sleepy, his hand goes to my hair and plays with that as he is falling asleep, it is the best feeling ever.
I start with my arm at a 90' angle, his head on my upper arm near my shoulder, he snuggles all the way in. If it is night, I will move my arm out slowly, and put a pillow just so his head can rub agianst it (we have a video montior, so after i leave, i can still see him) No blankets at all for him. It if it nap time, he usually wakes up after an hour, i found if i move my arm so he is laying on the bed himself, and pretend to be alseep, he will go right back to sleep, as long as he can see me .
I co-slept with my daughter until she was 6.5 mos. old and could go the whole night without nursing. She started out in the bassinet, but outgrew it 9and really, I just started pulling her into bed at about 3 mos. old anyway. We slept in the way that marielle described.
It was hard to move her out of the crib and I miss that time because she was still so small, but she does great in her crib now and I like being able to have a deep sleep, which is something I wasn't really getting when my daughter slept with us. And then on the days when she wakes up a bit early, I bring her to our bed and she will usually settle back to sleep until we all get up, and the great thing is not having to worry about blankets and pillows anymore (she is 1 1/2 YO).
I think this is just a subject where parents have to figure out their limts and what works best for them and their child.