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October 22, 2003



Studies funded by industry groups are always suspect. Who would have thought that there even was a crib industry? I loved these lines from the Fact Sheet:

"Several well-designed research studies demonstrate that SIDS is drastically reduced in babies cosleeping along with an aware, protective (non-smoking, non-drug-impaired) mother. Such an announcement would not sell cribs."

David C. Buchan

As somebody who is currently sleep deprived I'm reminded of the hidden danger of having a baby sleep in your bed. They can keep you awake! And that can be dangerous - especially on the road.

robert paterson

I think that there is a limit to us men talking about co-sleeping. Any experienced mums out there?

A question that Robin asked me as we were talking about this at 5am!!!!! this morning was if you co sleep, when and how do you make the transition to their own bed


My kids all had their own basket/cradle/crib/bed but also slept with us. They napped in their own "bed" and went to sleep for the night in their own "bed" but at some point they woke to be nursed and were taken into our bed where they remained for the rest of the night. I would't even remember waking up and getting them but would wake to find them in bed with us. Auto pilot.

Our first 3 boys are spaced almost exactly 2 years apart and there's 2 1/2 years between Ben & Jasmine. They each nursed until I was about 3 months pregnant with the next and then they weaned themselves. So at some point by about 16 months old they no longer woke in the night to nurse so they woke up in the same bed they went to sleep in. Jasmine nursed until she was 3 or older but I don't remember whether that included her wandering in from her bed to ours or not but she probably co-slept longer than the boys.

Alex (our Autistic son) was the exception. From Alex's webpage: "Alex would wake in the night and not be able to get back to sleep. He did not want to nurse or be held or touched. He just wanted to go back to sleep and couldn't. I picked out a beautiful instrumental lullaby tape and began playing it when he went down for a nap and to bed at night as a sleeping "cue". Worked like a charm. Then when he awoke in he night I just went in and put on the tape. The tape and the portable crib went where he went until around 2."


My daughter Taylor slept with us 90% of the time, from birth to about 9 months, 60% after that to one year, and rarely after age one. It was much easier on everyone if she was handy to nurse at night and all of us get as much undisturbed rest as possible. I don't know how mums who bottle feed do it -- I would find it such a drain and pain in the ass to be getting up every two hours to get a bottle. My husband loved having her close for a cuddle when he missed out on her all day.
I have no regrets up until she was about 6 months, BUT enough was enough when she was 10/11 months; restless and no one was getting any sleep. We did the cry it out thing at around a year or so, and in 4 nights she was sleeping in her crib, most nights from 8:30 PM all the way to 5:30 AM. When she would wake in the night I didn't nurse her, just left her alone and in 5 minutes she went back to sleep. I was amazed! This consistancy for 3 nights broke her of night waking.

At 5:30 AM she would be tucked in bed with us for a nurse and a snuggle before the day. We continued on like this until 14 months old, when she dediced she was done nursing.

I think that as long as it works for all parties concerned, nothing wrong with a combined sleeping approach. We missed having Taylor in bed with us, but it was clear that by 10 months, she really didn't need to nurse at night, and when she was on her own she had much longer uninterrupted periods of sleep.
We started putting her down at a regular time in her crib, mostly after falling asleep from nursing, but often awake. She was mad, and insulted at being put to bed, but again, 2 minutes of protest resulted in 8 or more hours of sleep.

With the next one (whenever that will be) I will likely co-sleep/bassinet through to 6 months, but start with structured day naps right away. THAT was my big mistake from the get-go. Once she slept a few hours in the day in her crib at regular times, she slept much better at night, and happier in her crib at night.

But, last night she woke in a panic at midnight and spent an hour snoozing with us. I then put her back into her crib once she was settled. She's 17 months now, and I hope she always feels the security of having a warm spot for her in our bed, from time to time. I wouldn't trade those early months with her at night for anything.

robert paterson

Many thanks Jypsy and Kelly

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