Co-Sleeping Against My Will

My baby wants to sleep with me. Which is understandable. She spent over nine months inside of me. Apparently, I’m a hard habit to break.

Problem is, I’m not comfortable with it. Despite the incredible feeling of her warm little snoozing baby body next to mine, plus the perk of being able to kiss her fuzzy head with minimal effort, I don’t sleep well. I’m too nervous about one of us rolling into the other. I’d much rather tuck her into something-or-other next to the bed, where we can get sleep independently, yet I can attend to diaper-changing and nursing needs immediately, before getting more sleep. That’s the goal, right there. More sleep.

Roy had no problem with our setup: Pack ‘N Play with Newborn Napper next to the bed. Took to it right away. Vera, on the other hand, will not have it. Not at all. I try. I’ll set her in there, where she’s OK for a few minutes, then when the fussing starts, I’ll pat or rock or insert pacifier until she calms, and then we’ll do the whole process over again, and again, and again, for up to a hour, when I give up and snuggle her into bed with me because I want to sleep. After all, light sleep is better than no sleep at all.

Part of me wants to give in and just figure out how to co-sleep as safely as possible, at least until she’s old enough for me to feel comfortable letting her cry it out. After all, she’s my baby. My last one. And her wants and needs are so basic and primal right now: Food, attention, a clean diaper and to have me sleep next to her at night. Plus, I know plenty of people who co-sleep (or co-slept) and love it.

But the bigger part of me wants to track down the miracle solution. The product that will be different enough from my Pack ‘N Play that she likes it, but similar in that it fits right next to the bed. It’s hard to know what to invest in. The last thing we need is another big hunk of plastic taking up space and collecting dust. Another big hunk of plastic that solves my involuntary co-sleep situation? Yes, please.




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  1. by Alison

    On March 2, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    We used a snuggle nest with my daughter, my SIL used her diaper pad and said it worked fine.

  2. by Jill

    On March 2, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    My twins slept in the Fisher Price bunny cradle rocker for 8 month’s. It rocks them to sleep, with optional music. It was hard to get them out of the cradle once they out grew it. Now they co-sleep with me.

  3. by Kami

    On March 2, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    We bought the Arm’s Reach Mini Co- Sleeper for the baby I’m due with in a few weeks. While we haven’t used it yet, I liked the concept and the reviews were mainly positive. With our first son, I used a Moses basket on a stand that was next to our bed. However, I don’t think that’s safe with a toddler running around.

  4. by Darcie

    On March 2, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    I also had no desire to co-sleep when we brought Huck home. It scared me and Reid even more. The first few nights to a week he mostly slept on my chest and then we figured out a swaddling/bassinet combo that works pretty well. He still ends up in our bed for a few hours a night, but I can deal with that for now. He now sleeps in his crib swaddled for a good 5 hours before waking up. The bassinet we have is…
    And we have some of the Halo sleep sack swaddles.

  5. by Amanda

    On March 2, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    I heard from a friend that her baby would not sleep in the crib until they figured out that it was warmth the baby wanted. Before putting baby down to sleep in the crib they’d first warm the mattress up with a heating pad so that it was warm and cozy, just like mom or dad’s chest.

  6. by anti Jen

    On March 3, 2012 at 9:25 am

    That’s funny, because the same thing happened with Zadie. And, unlike with Sam, I just gave in. I remembered what it was like to go without sleep just to get him to go down for a few hours, and figured: screw it. Zadie slept with me (me sleeping lightly) for about 3 months, then we moved her crib to the foot of our bed, then across the room, and eventually to her own room. I slept on my side, boob out, and she nursed at will. Down side: I often woke up with one giant boob, and one depleted boob. The middle-of-the-night boob switch was my biggest disruption. It wasn’t perfect, but I didn’t have nearly the sleep deprivation that I had with Sam, and I can’t remember being nearly as exhausted. And don’t worry. You won’t squoosh her. You’re the mom. You’re built with some sort of radar.

  7. by Marie

    On March 6, 2012 at 10:40 am

    Fisher price rock n’ play sleeper!! My twins slept in them next to my bed untill they were 8 months, it was the only way they’d sleep an now I swear by these rockers!

  8. by Lindsay

    On March 6, 2012 at 5:38 pm

    I second Marie’s suggestion! The Fisher Price Rock n Play sleeper was the ONLY thing my son would sleep in besides somebody’s arms. It has since been passed on to three other new mommies who swear by it.
    Love your blog by the way. Just relocated to NC from Minneapolis a few months ago and I enjoy reading about all the familiar MN locations you talk about.
    Best of luck to you!

  9. by Lauren O

    On March 7, 2012 at 9:46 am

    Do you have her swaddled? That was the miracle cure for my now almost 11 month old. We used a swaddler blanket, the one where it has velcro to hold them all snug. It really helped.

  10. by Mackenzie

    On March 7, 2012 at 8:41 pm

    If you are a healthy, breastfeeding mom/baby CO-SLEEP! It is indeed natural, and clearly it is what your maternal instincts are telling you to do. If you want the science behind the benefits as well as the celeb endorsement, read BEYOND THE SLING by Mayim Bialik PhD in neuroscience and better known as Blossom.

  11. by Liz

    On March 10, 2012 at 1:37 am

    Rock n play!!!

  12. by Liz H.

    On April 1, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    I hear ya. Laughed at the one giant boob comment above. If you google rock and play “flat head” is one of the suggested searches…