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  • Sleeping in own bed?

    I have a soon to be three year old.

    We started cosleeping with him at four months old in our bed (he was a perfect crib sleeper up until then). We loved the connection we felt with him. We new he was safe just by opening an eye to see him or just listening to his breathing.

    At the age of two we got him a twin mattress and placed it in what was going to be his room (we decided it was time to introduce him to his own space and to give us a little as well). We started transitioning him to this idea by laying with him in his bed with him for naps and nighttime (to transition him into his bed). Either me or DH would snuggle with him in his bed until he was asleep. At some point in the night he would wake up and come into our room and he would then sleep with us the rest of the night.

    Present day....
    We just concieved and we would like to cosleep with #2 and hopefully I will have a much better experience/success with breastfeeding. We decided it would be safe to only have one in bed with us (future baby) so we feel the need to wean our son from our bed.

    We are thinking about doing this in stages.
    Stage 1: Tonight I explained to my son that he's becoming a big boy and will be sleeping like a big boy in his bed with his stuffed bear. I lay next to him and read him a couple stories, gave lots of hugs and kisses and then sat in a rocking chair next to the bed. He cried and wanted me to 'snuggle him' to sleep. He climbed in my lap and wanted to be held and sung to. I held him and sung a lulluby and put him in his bed. He cried on and off for about 5mins asking why I won't sleep in his bed. I told him he's a big boy and we are going to try it. Each time I hugged and kissed him, told him I love him and sat back in the chair. Eventually he fell asleep.

    When he comes into our room later tonight we aren't going to refuse him sleeping in our bed as we feel that would be too much too soon.

    We are planning on weaning him eventualy from sleeping in our bed all together as with a newborn that could be dangerous with him climbing into our bed. - We plan on doing this as phase 2.

    Am I doing the right thing? Tonight was very hard and it felt like my heart was breaking when he was crying (I don't believe in CIO) and asking for more snuggles in his bed. I feel it will be more difficult/complicated when another baby arrives. Am I being too hard on him?

    Has anyone done this in phases?

  • #2
    Yes, it is much safer to only have one child in a bed, especially with a newborn, but have you thought of less drastic measures? We have a toddler bed next to my side for my 3yr old to lay in when he needs nighttime companionship. My husband still cuddles him to sleep in his own room and bed 8:30, but he usually does come over to our room at some point. If he really needs snuggles, hubby takes him back to his single bed and lays with him the rest of the night.

    Be careful with the "big boy' idea and phrasing. He may decide he dosn't ever want to be a big boy if it means such a sad thing to him. I know that has never been a motivator for me at any point in my life---to be a big girl! Are you going to quick that he feels a loss?

    Do you expect that having a second child means that your first will feel less need for you? I know that would be easier (my second is just 8m) but my first still wants a connection with me. When my lap is empty he fills it, when I am not carrying someone he want me to hold him. If I would of told him to just be a 'big boy' I am sure he would say he dosn't care! " just love me mommy!"
    There is very little written about adjusting to having a second child, but I wish there was. It sound like your son needs a gentler hand.

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    • #3
      it sounds like he isn't ready to sleep on his own. and if he makes the connection that all this is happening b/c there's going to be a new baby, he may begin to resent the baby, before its even born!

      i agree w/being careful w/the "big boy" concept, too. if he doesn't feel ready to be a "big boy", he may feel inadequate or shamed b/c he's not feeling ready for what you are telling him "big boys" should do.

      there are many ways to safely co-sleep w/siblings if that would work for your family. just make sure there is at lest one adult between him and the baby. you can give him his own mattress in your room or a sleeping bag. maybe he'd enjoy picking out a cool sleeping bag to be kept in your room in case he needs it.

      i remember when i got pregnant w/ds2, i was very worried about how our family bed would work out. but you know what? it was probably the easiest part of the whole transition! all the pieces just fell into place.

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      • #4
        im wondering now how cosleeping with two is any more dangerous than just one.
        when my second was born it didnt even occur to me.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by layla View Post
          im wondering now how cosleeping with two is any more dangerous than just one.
          when my second was born it didnt even occur to me.
          it's not that it's more dangerous, only that you shouldn't allow an older sibling to sleep next to an infant. they can roll over on the baby. API's co-sleeping guidelines are here.

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          • #6
            ah i see. i always slept inbetween my girls.

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            • #7
              Update

              Thank you everyone for the replies.

              Currently when he comes into our room in the middle of the night we just let him join us.

              Having a mattress next to our bed or going to his room when he comes in ours is what we'll probably do in the second phase (in a month or two).

              Our bed will be way too crowded with a toddler and baby in it together. Not to mention getting kicked in the stomach by my toddler is getting old.

              Today: I chatted with him this morning to see how he felt about 'last night' and him sleeping in his bed. He said he wants to sleep in his bed and mommy and daddy can sleep in their bed in their room

              When it was time for his nap today I asked him if he wanted me to sit next to him while he slept in his bed or if he wanted me to exit and me stay in my own room. He chose to stay in his bed and me to stay out of the room.
              For his nap routine I followed the same as night time. I layed next to him. Read a story, gave hugs, kisses and tucked him in. I then left the room and he went to sleep with out a stir. I'm shocked!

              - in retrospect he had mentioned sleeping in his own bed alone in the last few weeks. I guess maybe he needed a little nudge?

              Thank you for listening!

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