Three's Company

The parenting realm offers a multitude of techniques and styles for child rearing... but, in a world where everyone believes their opinion is best, it can prove difficult to navigate the already challenging waters. My parenting ethos is "DO WHAT WORKS FOR YOU" sadly I cannot say the same for the many critics out there that offer unwarranted parenting advice that is usually based on unfounded facts. 

I say all this to say when it comes to the to the topic of co-sleeping usually the ones against it have very negative thoughts towards the ones who do it. From the often privacy invading questions like " How do you guys have sex?" to the perpetuators of the toxic patriarchy who ask " Is your partner ok with that?" I understand there are risks with co-sleeping just as there are risks with leaving a baby alone in a room. What is important is to implement what works for you. Co-sleeping has worked for us ( and far from hinders our sexual activities). With moving to a new state, struggling with post-partum depression "attachment parenting" has been my savior.  The extra skin to skin when sleeping really helped me a lot. Breastfeeding at night is definitely a breeze.  

As a family that travels a lot,  I needed to offer my child some sort of consistency and with continued breastfeeding and co sleeping he is used to some sort of routine ( even if it is simple). When we are in new surroundings I know I can offer him these comforts even if the bedroom changes every other week or so. It isn't easy, believe me and although it hasn't affected our sex life, my physical comfort is definitely impaired. With continued traveling in our future , I don't see it coming to an end any time soon and that's okay.

Below I'm sharing the pros and cons of co-sleeping. Understand that no formula is safer, nor does it make one a better or worse parent. 

 

PROS

  • Easy Breastfeeding

For obvious reasons, babies who co-sleep are more likely to successfully breastfeed and breastfeed longer. When factoring in logistics, with your milk supply readily available it's as simple as turning over to nurse. This supply and demand also helps boost milk production.

  • Better Sleep for Baby

brain scans have shown that babies who co-sleep have healthier sleep cycles. Because babies often wake in the middle of the night, the exrra reassurance that mom and dad is there makes it easier for them to return to sleep.

  •  Better Sleep for the Parents

Since the baby sleeps better, it’s no surprise that the benefits add up for mom and dad. because baby ISN'T waking up as much, it makes it easier to sleep through the night.

  • Reduced Risk for SIDS

studies do find that SIDS risk increases with babies who sleep in a crib. The risks of co-sleeping drop further when proper precautions are in place of course. with co-sleeping, it is easier for parents to detect when something is wrong with the baby.

  • Normalized Temperature

Babies  cannot regulate their body temperatures. Babies who co-sleep, however, have been found to have more normal, stable body temperatures than babies who sleep alone. This is probably because the parent’s own body heat helps in regulating.

  • Better Breathing, Stable Heart Rate and Rhythm

babies who co-sleep breathe better than babies who don’t. This is believed to be an effect of the baby syncing  breathing with that of mom’s or dad’s. This might factor in with decreased SIDS risk

Researchers also believe that the baby’s heart rate syncs somewhat to the parent’s. It’s as if being around another human being unconsciously gives your little one cues on their own biological process.

  • Comfort

there’s something simply comforting about being near your baby. Physically and psychologically, Separation from the parents at this time may even result in anxiety.

  •  Better Bonding

psychology suggests that much of bonding is unconscious. Being there in the dark of the night just strengthens your baby’s instinct that you’ll be there when they need you the most. This is  helpful if you don’t have much time to bond with the little one during the day.

  • Brain Stimulation

Compared to other animals, many human babies have to do much brain development out of the womb. Co-sleeping can even make for better brain development as it allows your little one to subconsciously take note of your own behavioral and sleeping patterns.

  • Later Independence

contrary to popular belief, Babies who co-sleep are actually more likely to become independent much sooner. babies who co-slept soon became kids that were more self-reliant and socially independent many years later.

  • Dad’s Involvement

it helps them feel less left out from the large amount of bonding that mom has with the baby during breastfeeding. It also gives them a feeling of involvement in the baby’s day-to-day care.

 

CONS

  • Less sleep for you.

babies toss and turn in their sleep which can prove uncomfortable at times.

  • Less intimacy.

Let's face it a lot of  people aren't comfortable doing the hanky panky with a baby in the room,  if you're fearless like me and understand baby will not REMEMBER this then you'll be fine.

  • Increased dependency

Most parents fear their children will end up not wanting to sleep in their own bed. Children very regularly end up bed sharing even with their own room.

We are all out here doing the absolute best we can, that's all that matters! What was the deciding factor for your sleeping arrangement? Would you change it?