Myth #3: Co-sleeping is dangerous

It is dangerous to have your baby in your bed.

I have to say this is one that I actually did believe until well after Ripley was born. I chastised people who co-slept thinking they were putting their babies in danger because they were too lazy to get out of bed.

Some things just can’t be understood until you’re in the situation but after endless nights of waking up every 45 mins, I decided I’d just let Ripley sleep with me. He was four months old. I still panic sometimes that I’ll roll on him, but most of the time I wake up with his feet kicking my face. I’m pretty sure he is OK. I freaked out when I put him to sleep on his tummy at 5 months because it was the only way I could get him to sleep longer than 45 mins. He slept five hours and now he won’t sleep on his back, except in our bed oddly. I will sleep with my next baby from day one. I will not feel bad about it, and I don’t feel bad about saying it.

The judgement I receive (despite most people admitting to co-sleeping quite often) is sad. Worse still are the times I hear myself playing it down to avoid confrontation. I shouldn’t feel sad about the choices I make, I should own it. But the fact is, that despite a lot of people admitting that mothers have instincts and know what to do with babies, we still seem to try and be sheep.

In situations like these, I always think, what do women in tribal situations do, like women in Africa. They don’t have 3 bedroom houses with lots of beds, they sleep together. It keeps everyone safe and warm. Why do we in the Western world need to change that? From my reading, the main reason women were told not to sleep with their babies was due to babies being deliberately smothered due to having too many children to look after. There was a time, a long time ago, when women didn’t have nearly as many choices as we do now, and a time when poverty was rife. So to stop the practice, the church banned sleeping in the same bed. Thus how we came to the situation today. Furthermore, there is quite a lot of evidence that mother and baby match their breathing rhythms which protects baby and also allows mother to sleep deeper when baby is sleeping deeper thus feeling more refreshed. 

Dr Sears, a renowned pediatrician has some great information on co-sleeping or bed-sharing. See this link for more

Disclaimer: I am not a medical expert, just an expert in Ripley Faraday Cram. I don’t want to offend but I also think it is important that the realities of parenting are acknowledged. If my thoughts offend you, I’m sorry, but please just move on

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