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Family Bed with new baby on the way... I'm scared!

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  • Family Bed with new baby on the way... I'm scared!

    Hi! So our beautiful DS is 13 months old and we're due with our second at the end of October. Sweetie-pie nurses to sleep every nite... in fact he won't even consider sleeping without his nighttime nursies.

    I've tried on many nights to move him to his sidecar, but as SOON as I move him, he's awake and crying. I'm so nervous about the new baby coming and how the situation will all work out. DS has never been an "easy" baby to get to sleep and our routine can take up to 1.5 hours.

    Poor DH has ended up on the couch the majority of the nights over the last year and I just don't want that to be the case! I'm wondering how we will all fit into the bed... and what is safe.

    I've had (of course) the regular suggestions... "He needs his own bed", "you have to start sometime..." and the truth is, I'm feeling GUILTY because I have never let him learn how to comfort himself back to sleep. Ever since birth, (he's my first birth baby), I have literally been right there, or RUN to him at the first sign of stirring. The few times I've attempted to "be tough" and see if he'll fall back asleep he just ends up getting increasingly upset, wakes right up, and I end up in there after a minute anyway.

    So that's my dilemma, it's nice to have a place here to post where I'm sure that many loving moms have dealt with the same or similar problem.

    Thank you in advance for your suggestions & guidance! :-)

  • #2
    congrats on your very soon arrival!!

    Originally posted by copaseticdiva View Post
    I've had (of course) the regular suggestions... "He needs his own bed", "you have to start sometime..." and the truth is, I'm feeling GUILTY because I have never let him learn how to comfort himself back to sleep. Ever since birth, (he's my first birth baby), I have literally been right there, or RUN to him at the first sign of stirring. The few times I've attempted to "be tough" and see if he'll fall back asleep he just ends up getting increasingly upset, wakes right up, and I end up in there after a minute anyway.
    this sounds like precisely the AP way. attending to his needs, etc. you actually are being "tough" b/c this style of parenting is often "tougher". it can take more energy and more responsiveness, but there are HUGE payoffs as they age. he will trust you and accept your guidance.

    for safe sleep guidelines, read our Nighttime Parenting Principle. i was nervous about how the whole nighttime thing would work out, too, when ds2 was about to be born. however, mine are 3 years apart and ds1 was no longer nursing. just from the info you have given, it sounds as though you will have to get them to sleep separately. nurse down one while dh is w/the other, then nurse the 2nd down. it may be some time before you can all go to bed together. OR, it may all just come together perfectly! for us, all the pieces just sort of fell into place. i hope this is the case for you!

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    • #3
      Hello copaseticdiva! Congrats!

      When is the new baby coming? Do you have a little time to gradually adjust your precious first?

      Maybe nurse the oldest to sleep on a futon on the floor (in your room) and then move over to your bed with the infant in the sidecar (between nursings) Then if your 13 mo old wakes up and comes over --the baby will have a safe place to be while you attend nurse and/or cuddle to sleep the older. There are many varieties of this idea... and I am doing one with my 3yr old that comes over at a certain point in the night and I don't want him to roll onto his 10mo old brother!

      Maybe check this other thread where we talk about what to do about our second. You will figure something out, just get creative! Here are some of our arrangements.... Let us know how it goes!

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      • #4
        Please don't feel "guilty" because you "never let him learn how to comfort himself back to sleep." In my opinion, based on all of the science I've seen and experiences I've heard about, letting a child "learn to comfort himself" is neglecting the child and forcing him to learn how to suppress his real needs in order to cope with abandonment. Not good for any child!

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        • #5
          I am sorry I didn't address the emotional part of your question! That is VERY important!
          You are doing the best for your baby regardless of what those other people think you should be doing.
          You are following your mommy instincts and his cues! He is lucky to have such a responsive mother that isn't forcing him into a situation he is not ready for.
          Take a look at The University of Notre Dame Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Lab Link for the long term effects of a bed sharing family.
          and here is an article at Mothering.com-A Foot in Your Face, or Ten Other Reasons to Family Bed By Joylyn Fowler

          What you provide for him by being attentive at night is priceless! Don't let those naysayers make you doubt yourself!
          Last edited by naomifrederickmd; 01-13-2009, 10:41 AM.

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          • #6
            maybe?

            Hi-- I am totally new to all of this and only three months into cosleeping with our first DS but could you put your first born between you and DH and your DC2 btwn you and a mesh guardrail? I know some DH sleep too soundly to be next to baby but perhaps with a 13 mo old and if your DH is fairly aware after a year or cosleeping you could pull it off- or even put one of those pillow rolls btwn them if needed. You are doing an awesome job being there for your LO and planning to do the same for your new baby..

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            • #7
              yes I couldnt agree with you more naomi!

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