I have two boys: almost 2 and almost 4. They sleep in the same room (2yr old in crib, 4yr old in twin bed). I am pregnant and due in April. My husband and i disagree on how to put our kids to sleep. He wants to rock our 2yr old to sleep and lay down next to our 4yr old to go to sleep. From the time he starts the 'sleep' part of the bed time routing (after stories, brush teeth, etc) it can take well over an hour for the kids to fall asleep. He frequently complains that we need to cut their naps so the kids will go to bed earlier and faster.
I, on the other hand, don't like to lay down with the kids or rock them. I do believe in AP. While I used to rock and lay down with them when they were younger, I have now 'trained', if you call it that, my 4 yr old to lay down on his own. I still lay next to him for a few minutes and cuddle. I sometimes stay in the room for quite some time sitting in the rocking chair. If I leave I also tell him he can always come get me if he needs something (which he does). My 2yr old doesn't like to rock and now wants to read books in bed (with a small light on) and then lay/play in bed until he falls asleep. Again, he hasn't cried about this. It can take a long time (30 min.) for him to fall asleep, but he's never sad. Its as if he's using up his energy. Occassionally, he needs some cuddling or a song and I gladly oblige. While I have made a concerted effort to try these methods, I never made them 'cry it out' or didn't listen to their concerns.
My question is: Am I no longer an AP parent by not staying with my children until they are fully asleep? Is it okay to leave them if they are happy? My husband isn't willing to leave the room if the children are awake because this isn't AP. I tell him he'll never know what the kids are okay with until he tries. I feel like I'm being practical with my time. I can't take two hours every night (until 9pm) to put my kids to sleep. I have no time to myself and I don't think that is emotionally healthy. My husband can never have 'date nights' at home or do anything together because our kids take up so much of our evening time. Especially with another baby on the way, I feel like I need to teach my kids some independence with love.
Tell me honestly, am I being unreasonable? Its causing such a strife that I honestly question whether or not I would have more children. I'm struggling understanding how its not healthy to leave my child to fall asleep on their own when their content to do it. Does it take you all night to put your kids to bed? I really want to be an attached parent, but I don't know that I have the emotional sanity if it means I give up all time to be by myself.