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#480691 01/01/09 05:23 PM
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I thought I'd put the question out there. How can I convince my fiance that despite what the nurses in the NICU said ("do not under any circumstances allow your baby to sleep in your bed") that it really is ok and he's much calmer in our bed! I fall asleep with him on the couch and Brandon freak out thinking he's going to fall off me and die. He's paranoid about it. SO I've just started putting parker's bouncer right next to my side of the bed (We don't have the money for a bassinet or co-sleeper) and I'll put him in bed with me when Brandon's at work. I am not able to breastfeed (Parker doesn't latch right for a full meal at breast) so I'm exclusively pumping and feeding him breastmilk from a bottle. So Even though I wear him from time to time, I feel a stronger bond when we co-sleep.

How can I practically let Brandon know that it will be ok to co-sleep? Especially when so many medical professionals say no!

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CatMayhew #480742 01/01/09 07:46 PM
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There is a very good reason why the nurses told you not to sleep with your newborn, and should you happen to roll over on him in your sleep and injure him you would never EVER forgive yourself.
Thats a good idea to put his bouncer next to your bed where you can reach over and touch him whenever you want to, but PLEASE don't have him sleeping with you.
Meanwhile, keep trying to get him to breastfeed, lots of newborn babies take a while to learn how to do that well. They have a lot to learn when they are new, eating and sleeping well doesn't come easy for some of them, so be patient both with him and with yourself. You have a lot to learn too, but it will all get easier as you go along.
Most of all, relax and enjoy Parker, he is your little miracle!

Claybird #498304 02/28/09 02:57 AM
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CatMayhew don't listen to what ANYONE else tells you, go with your instincts. I have co-slept with all 3 of my children and they are now very healthy and almost 6, almost 4 and just turned 2. In fact my 2 year old still sleeps with us. The midwife told me the night he was born (the 2 year old) to put him straight into bed with me to feed him as we were both exhausted after a hard labour. And he's slept with me every night since that first night! It amazes me that in the Western world people think there is something so weird, dangerous and unnatural about being close to our babies!!! FFS, how do you think babies kept warm before the introduction of electric heaters and air conditioners??? Next to their mothers!!! Countries without such luxuries have no problems with children sleeping that way. There are now many studies which show the benefits of co-sleeping. The only time you should NOT sleep with your baby is if yourself or your partner have taken drugs or consumed alcohol or are on medication that could make you extra tired. Other than that, there are thousands of peopel worldwide who co-sleep just fine with their children, me being one of them!! People will give you all sorts of opinions, it's taken me a long time to learn to blow them off, but honestly your instinct comes first, use it and be proud of doing the best job you can as a mother :)

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CatMatthew,

Will try to write more later, but co-sleeping with your baby is not dangerous when done with safety in mind. In fact, some studies show that it is much safer..

For some backup on this, get a hold of a copy of "Cosleeping with your baby" by James McKenna, probably the foremost expert on child sleep in the country. And pretty much anything from the Doctor Sears Library. Also, search online right now for a free copy of "Babies Need Their Mothers Beside Them" by James McKenna, which can be found for free all over the web. If you are looking for some professional backup for what your body and mama instinct is rightfully telling you, there it is.

Claybird, I must respectfully disagree. Your kneejerk reaction to "what if" can just as easily be made in the other direction. And it's why cosleeping families are given such a hard time in this country with no substantive backing. Oversleeping (rolling over on your baby) is extremely uncommon and generally in the cases of alcohol or substance abuse, or extreme obesity. Mothers are wired so that in the absence of things like this, they just don't do it.

One small caveat though. Sleeping on a couch or a chair with your baby is not cosleeping per se, and does carry some risk of suffocation in couch pillows, or falls to the floor. Dr. Sears website has some basic safety precautions for cosleeping. I also have an article on cosleeping and safety and cosleeping choices on the breastfeeding website linked below which may be of some help to you.

And, come visit me in the breastfeeding site and forum! My admiration for pumping full time, but with the proper support, you probably can get that baby to breast if you want to try it. If you are interested, I can try to help/get you some help.

Warmly,

Nicki :-)



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There are real dangers when co-sleeping with infants. After nursing/feeding/changing and spending time holding them until they fell asleep, I'd place them in their bassinet or crib for safety. No pillows. No cushy mattress or blankets that could cover their little nostrils.

But, as they grew, I DID co-sleep with them. I think the guideline was as long as they were strong enough to hold up and turn their heads...push away if they need space.

We co-slept when it wasn't popular but it paid off dividends. We LOVED being close to our kids and vice versa. The proof: They were close to us throughout their childhood and remain so as young adults.

No other mammalian species force their children to sleep far apart from them except the European human races.

Co-sleeping is bonding!

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I agree that it might be kind of unnatural to force your kid to sleep alone on his/ her own. Unfortunately it is typical of European cultures to wake up early and go to work within a tight schedule far away from home in an environment where you have to be productive and nobody cares if you were co-sleeping or dancing merengue all night! Not everybody is able to sleep sharing the bed with more than one person. We taught to sleep our son on his own from the very beginning. He loves his bed and his teddies, he even recognizes the "signs" when he is tired and is always ready, sometimes even delighted to be taken to bed. He loves body contact during the day, he will hug you for no reason. A couple of times after a nightmare, we had him in bed with us and nobody slept, including him. So never again.

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I do agree that there are some situations just not safe for co-sleeping, so parents should do a bit of reading (or posting here!) to get advice before starting. For example if you slept in a bed that was really fluffy and full of fluffy pillows and blankets everywhere, and had just drink 5 scotches at a birthday party, that might not be a good co-sleeping situation. I know the example is a bit extreme, but my point is that there are good and not-so-good ways to do this.


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When cosleeping, it is important to be safe. Be sure there are no gaps between the bed and the wall or heaadboard where a baby could be trapped. Keep pillows and blankets away from baby's face. Use a sleepsack to keep baby warm. Never, ever sleep with a baby if you are on prescription or illegal drugs or have been drinking or are very tired. Some dads are not aware enough to safely sleep next to a baby - one dad I know can't cosleep since he flails when he dreams.

We have coslept with our 6 month old since she came home from the hospital. I can't imagine letting her sleep anywhere else. At least twice when she was tiny, she threw up in her sleep and was choking on mucus. I was able to pick her up immediately and drain her mouth and nose since she was right next to me.

Even my pediatrician said that he is fine with us cosleeping. He said, "Unless they are on drugs, mothers do not roll over on their babies!'

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Last edited by MikeSaltori; 07/16/09 10:44 AM.
MikeSaltori #554993 10/08/09 03:02 PM
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I co-sleep with my 6 month old....and I was terified at first because he had a hard time sleeping alone. He didn't cry but he would be up all night moving around and moaning. I felt like he was not okay. SO I started sleeping with him. Everybody told me not to but it was the best for me. One he rested finally and he was less grumpy in the day time. I never really rested because I couldn't really sleep thinking I'd suffocate him. SO I think I sacrificed my rest for his. Shortly he alone didn't want to sleep with me anymore...and I put him in his crib right next to me at night. He now sleep almost through the whole night, I just cuddle with him in the morning when dad goes to work. I think that if you feel comfortable it is okay. Obviously years ago people didn't have dr. and hospitals to tell them not to co-sleep and we made it through. Just be very careful.....very very careful and enjoy your baby reagrdless of what people tell you.

mominaflash #574488 12/31/09 01:26 PM
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I never did understand what the big uproar over co-sleeping is all about. Then again, I come from a family where co-sleeping and baby wearing is common place. I have six younger siblings who also all have children who co-sleep. I have Two NICU babies and was never told by any medical staff not to co-sleep with my children. My youngest son was what is referred to as a 'micro preemie'. He has had multiple surgeries, at 3 area hospitals, most of them at Boston Children's Hospital. The hospitals have always provided a bed for co-sleeping. Children's actually has mom and baby sized cribs. They actually have pamphlets in the wards about the benefits of co-sleeping with your child! I find that the time i spend close with him keeps me in tune to his breathing (he has an airway disorder) I find that I am able to sense serious changes in his breathing and react to them where I might not notice until morning if he was in another room. I would say, do what feels natural to you. If it was dangerous, it would not feel natural. As a mother you will know what is best for you and your baby. It has become to common place for us to ignore our instinct and follow the advice stranger gives us in a book. Although I have to agree, I can obviously see the danger in a situation mentioned above, someone who was heavily medicated or intoxicated could hurt a baby while asleep, then again, someone in that state of mind could hurt a baby changing a diaper. As with opinions, everyone has their own, and thinks their way is best. This is just my two cents Thanks Tina

CatMayhew #640274 11/04/10 12:20 PM
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Hi, I wish you all the luck with convincing him about co sleeping. Have you tried reading with him The Baby Sleep Book by Dr Sears? It is an amazing book for cosleeping. We have been co sleeping with our son since he was 6 weeks old (suggested by Dr Jack Newman) and he is 6 mo old now. We all love it, and we all sleep so much better since we have been co sleeping. The key is doing it safely. I wanted to respond especially to your breast feeding comment. I had an emergency csection after a 36 hour diffiult labour. My baby was in distress and his heart rate kept dropping. He was very stressed out after his birth and would latch but not suck. After a few days in the hospital with no luck bfeeding I stupidly allowed the Lactation Consultant to give him a bottle. She said it would "teach him how to suck properly". Well, the only thing it taught him was how to suck properly on an artificial nipple... It took me seven weeks of heart break, sleeplessness, and pumping every 2 hours to get him off the bottle and on the breast. I saw 6 different LCs and it wasnt until I found Dr Jack Newman that my baby finally got it. He had him bfing in his office properly for the first time, and on his first visit! I dont know if you are close enough to Toronto to visit his clinic, but if not go to his website (The Newman Breast feeding Clinic and Institute) and you can email him and ask any qiestions. He responds himself usually within a day. The way he got my baby off the bottle was with a lactation aid. This is a feeding tube that one end goes in a bottle of your milk, the other you slip in the corner of the babys mouth after he latches on. The baby gets the fast flow that he is used to from the bottle, only he begins to associate this with your breast instead of bottle. It only took my son two days and one night of using this and he was bfing on his own ever since. There are videos and info on his site on how to do this method. Im sure if you took this info to your LC they can help you get started. It is a little difficult at first but sooo worth it in the end. It is so difficult to pump and bottle feed, and bfing is so much easier. I wish you all the luck in the world with bosth bfing and cosleeping! If you would like to contact me, feel free! :-)

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Lots of people have already said it, but I just want to chime in with another co-sleeping success story. My twins were born a couple weeks premature, and slept with us from the day they came home until they were too big to fit! We're a very snuggly, affectionate family anyway, so co-sleeping was just natural for us, and I never doubted it. In fact, the one night the girls slept in their own room (really just a playroom), because they wanted to try out a new piece of furniture in there, I was up and down all night, because I was so worried about them. Worst night's sleep since they were born--LOL! Co-sleeping is the natural habit of humans since caveman times.

--Maria

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