A Good Example of Bad Co-sleeping

Home / A Good Example of Bad Co-sleeping - February 24, 2015 , by yvettelamb

I have written about the reluctant co-sleeper before (I believe there are a number of us out there). If you co-sleep when you do not want to co-sleep, but your baby makes you co-sleep, then your night may go a little something like this. Although for your sake, I hope that it does not.

 example cosleeping

11 PM: Start the night with everyone in their own bed or crib, resolute to remain that way until morning.

12:30 AM: Get up to shush the baby back to sleep.

1:30 AM: Get up to rock the baby back to sleep.

2 AM: Get up to go to the toilet. Wish you had done your pelvic floor exercises.

2:45 AM: Get up to rock the baby back to sleep. Baby will not be rocked back to sleep. Feel cold and very tired. Bring the baby into bed; this will be the last time (which is what you always say).

2:50 AM: Follow safe co-sleeping protocol by protecting your eyes and vital organs from kicks, pulls and punches as the baby makes himself comfortable.

2:55 AM: Receive a heavy blow to the temple. How did his foot even get up there? Ever professional, remain silent and swear only in your head.

3 AM: Along with your partner, cling nervously to the edge of the bed and marvel how one tiny baby can take up so much room, and also grow extra limbs.

3:10 AM: In mime form, discuss your octopus baby with partner, and the lack of space for three of you. Watch him stumble a little gleefully to the spare room as the baby steals the space he left behind. Still cling to the edge of the bed.

3:15AM: As you wait for the baby to settle (stop assaulting you), feel grateful that you are at least lying down rather than stood in the nursery playing a desperate round of ‘shush-pat’.

3:20 AM: Baby falls asleep so you immediately need to cough. Attempt to ignore this natural, involuntary impulse but let out a small strangled bark, much like a sick dog.

3:25 AM: Fail to loosen baby’s vice-like grip from your hair. You are exhausted; you can sleep through this pain.

3:26 AM: You cannot sleep through this pain. Again, swear silently, but with gusto.

3:30 AM: Think these thoughts in a repeated cycle: Nobody else co-sleeps. Co-sleeping is natural. Co-sleeping creates dependency. Co-sleeping is right for us. I will regret co-sleeping. I wonder if my scalp is bleeding. We are almost out of bread.

3:55 AM: Gaze at your baby and enjoy the closeness of him curled up next to you. Listen to his rhythmic breathing and begin to drift off.

5:15 AM: Wake up, suddenly panicked that the baby isn’t there. He is; with his head on your weak and tiny bladder.

5:20 AM: Ignore the desperate urge for the loo and try to fall back asleep. Consider if bed-wetting is an acceptable alternative to waking the baby. Are undecided.

5:25 AM: Dare to move your baby’s head – success! Fall back asleep.

6:15 AM: Wake to your baby smacking you repeatedly in the face, and smiling. It has been another good night… for him.

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38 thoughts on “A Good Example of Bad Co-sleeping”

  1. Terrie says:

    Yes!! That is EXACTLY how my nights go. Especially 3.25am I swear I’m going bald.

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Ha I know – what is it with the hair?! They are brutes!

  2. Whoops, that’s what I get for commenting on my phone, Anyhoo… Totally had that with my first but vowed never again with my second, have given in occasional but realised its even harder to get some sleep so won’t be doing it again, until I give in!

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      My phone is a total pain to comment on stuff with. Either that or I have very fat and clumsy fingers 😉 If we have another part of me thinks I will (try to) be really set and not go down this route, and another part of me thinks I’ll co-sleep from the off to get as much sleep as possible!! But can imagine with two you have to look at the bigger picture as it’s much easier to get through the day like a zombie with only one child to care for!

  3. ladyjvil2wil says:

    Wow! Have you been peaking in my bedroom window, smh!! On top of all that, MY 18 MONTH OLD IS NURSING IN ADDITION TO FIGHTING SLEEPING IN HER CRIB, wakes up atleast twice during the night to roll on me and attack my boobs! Because according to her my body belongs to her..Alas, what can u do? It’s always good to know u r not the only one..Wishing all of us more restful nights before they turn 18, lol!!

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Haha, you really are getting assaulted in every which way! Obviously, breastfeeding is wonderful and nourishing and all that… but can appreciate why you don’t want to be as active with it at this point in the middle of the night! Wishing you some proper rest soon x

      1. ladyjvil2wil says:

        Thanks lovely!! One day at a time is all we can do 🙂 .. I see weaning in my near future and doing a fundraiser to pay for a sleep consultant so I can be a “GOOD PARENT” and not encourage their dependency on me, because they are toddlers and should be independent like an 18yo, riiiiiiiiight haha, jk! Well, I’m not kidding about that weaning part :). I am grateful that I am getting better with tuning others out and affirming myself as being a good mother 🙂

        1. Yvette Lamb says:

          Oh God there are a lot of knob heads about, who of course, as people who don’t know your child half as well as you do, are perfectly placed to tell you you’re not doing it right! Idiots! I can be so critical of myself but ultimately, every choice I make is for the right reason at the time (whether it’s right for my son or right because I’m too tired to do anything else), and when your kids are loved and happy, I’d say that is pretty amazing parenting right there! 🙂

  4. Tara says:

    So true, only I have given up any pretense of not co-sleeping and she comes in with me at 10pm when she first wakes.

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      I am sure that is far more sensible than all the lying I did to myself that we would NOT co-sleep… and end up doing it anyway. Your method sounds much more restful (bar any assaults of course). I hope you have pitched your co-sleeping body suit to Dragons Den by the way! 🙂

  5. Fionnuala says:

    Oh yes, that’s our life too. But I know I’ll miss him when he starts sleeping through the night in his own bedroom.

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Awe, that’s very sweet – enjoying it while it lasts is a good way to think. Now, my son (mostly) sleeps in his cot all night – have probably just cursed it! But when he’s poorly he comes in with us and it’s nice to get extra snuggles. However, I have to say I don’t miss the regular co-sleeping… I think I had about reached my limit!!

  6. Louise says:

    Oh yes, so very true! Although the co-sleeping happens more with our eldest these days – Sophie rarely settles if I attempt to tuck her into bed with us so I end up leaning over the cot with endless hours of shush-pat sometimes instead!

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      It’s a tough call on which is worse isn’t it? Shush pat or a kicking in the ribs!! Hope your leaning over the cot days are over soon – we do a fair bit of this when trying to get Sam to sleep and it’s not great on the back!

  7. Kaye says:

    Haha, This sounds exactly like my nights lately!

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Sorry to hear that! 😉 Good luck sleeping / protecting yourself from the violence tonight. Repeat: It won’t last forever (hopefully!)

  8. Emily-Jane says:

    Every night…I used to hold off until 2am..now I am so over the shush pat I bring her into my bed at the first waking!

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      It’s the wisest way! I think I did about 7 or 8 landing trips a night for a couple of months when he was younger, co-sleeping not even occurring to me. And then finally, after an exhausted lightbulb moment I brought him in and couldn’t believe how much easier it was. Until he started moving / attacking / standing / talking…

      1. Emily-Jane says:

        I know..I eventually found being beaten up lying down rather than walking the halls all night was a lesser if two evils..

  9. In India, we follow this practice of never leaving the baby alone,so making him sleep in a crib in another room is totally unacceptable and often sacrilegious. Babies, toddlers, little children in whatever stage they are, they co-sleep with their mothers. The premise elderlies hold for this is that the babies will get scared or the ghosts will come haunting them. We are indeed a fearful lot. 😀 My mother would not even let me sleep with my back turned to my baby. imagine being pulled, hit, punched, pushed but still have to lie on one shoulder. Your post reminded me of those days. At 4, Dhruv still co-sleeps with me and I love cuddling with him.

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Oh wow, that’s really interesting. That takes any dilemma about whether or not to co-sleep out of the equation at least doesn’t it! That’s so nice that Dhruv and you happily co-sleep now. It must be more relaxing at that age without the fear of them falling out of bed etc. and less risk of regular, random wakings too I would imagine! You are a trooper though, keeping on through the face to face attacks of the younger days…. motherhood really does give you a thicker skin!

  10. Ahh yes. I am a reluctant co-sleeper. Elsa goes to bed at 7.30 by herself and usually wakes up and won’t settle around 1am. She then comes in with me and proceeds to attack me in her sleep for the next 6 hours. Sometimes she uses my head as a pillow. I keep telling myself I will attempt controlled crying next time but I’m always too tired when it comes to it!

  11. Yvette Lamb says:

    Ha at head pillow! Laughing in sympathy you understand. It’s so hard to know what to do when you’re tired… not least in the middle of the night. I couldn’t imagine the fresh hell that must be controlled crying at some ungodly hour when we could all be at least laid down if together. But then… I am a total sucker and also a fan of the easiest option! Whatever you do, I hope you get some more rest soon 🙂

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      It’s amazing how many of us are ‘afflicted!’ Little bruisers 😉

  12. goddesslea79 says:

    Oh I remember all this well. I have a 5 year old that still ends up width ways in my bed some nights x

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      A 5 year old must have a strong kick too! You are hardcore… and I’m sure I will be right where you are in 3ish years!

  13. Mummy R says:

    Hahahaha! I am a cosleeper and my girls are now 27 months old. I absolutely identify with this as we did (sort of) choose cosleeping, but are in a sort of constant quandry about it.
    #fridayfrolics

  14. Mummy Fever says:

    Very familiar with this from the older children – currently 7 months into round four #FridayFrolics

  15. ‘Another desperate round of shush-pat’ Ha! Nailed it, my friend. Great post.

    #fridayfrolics

  16. Great post 🙂 I always stop the shhh pat a minute to soon and and up starting again 🙁 Thanks for linking up. #FridayFrolics

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Thanks Claire – ah yes stop too soon and live to regret it – been there too!

  17. Rachel K says:

    Exactly this. I laughed so hard that I cried. What a relief to know that our family is painfully normal! That mine isn’t the only husband suffering through the questionable luxury of escaping to the couch! Thank you. (First child, seven months old, teething.)

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Thanks so much. Painfully normal – that is a very apt description of life with a baby. I used to switch between feeling sorry for my husband and also really jealous that he got to swan off to sleep by himself!!

  18. Faye says:

    Oh wowwww this is exactly where I am at….definitely a reluctant cosleeper! Baba is 3.5 months and I swore I wouldn’t have her in with us but i have found myself folding of late just to get some sleep….she wakes up happy and bright, as I drag my sorry arse up to face another day deshevelled and weak! Oh the joys of motherhood 😉

    1. Yvette Lamb says:

      Oh I know, it’s so hard isn’t it? I still have the thought that their sleep is so important as if they don’t sleep they’re even grumpier than us. BUT it’s awful when you are too hot / getting clawed / scared to sleep with them beside you. They really are the bosses of us! In the end, I think all we can do is try and get as much sleep, however we can, whenever we can! Hope you manage some rest soon 🙂

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