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post #41 of 87
:

I think this is the bottom line for these friends of yours. I agree with everything else said about striking a real dialogue about the underlying issues here and exploring all sides of parenting decisions. But right now, sleep is a precious thing and a 5 month old nurses quite a bit at night. Mothers have to do whatever they can to maximize their sleep and often cosleeping is the best way to do this.

I think focusing on how well these couples are coparenting is not really the issue here. The men are not going through a hormonal upheaval and really need to rally behind their wives during this incredibly challenging time. When everyone is getting adequate sleep and the hormones are not wilding raging and the adjustment process is not so new, they can concern themselves with navigating their discussions and decisions around raising their children. And by then, it might not present much of a problem for them.
post #42 of 87
Thread Starter 
I sent this thread to two of the couples I talked about. All of your comments have been so insightful--I have to admit that I didn't see all the angles of this issue, and I feel a bit more educated!

Regarding our friends, each has some issue that I think could contribute to the problem. One bottle feeds, two breastfeed, and the bottle feeding mom is the most adamant about co-sleeping. Perhaps she wants a kind of closeness she doesn't get with feeding her son.

Anyway, after reading all the comments here, I feel ready to discuss this stuff like crazy with our friends! You've all said things I could not understand or articulate, but after reading what each of you said, I thought, "Yeah! Good point!"

I think I projected myself and my father onto this issue without realizing it, and that certainly clouded my judgment. I apologize, and I thank you again for the great input. I lurk here a lot, and I always find a heck of a lot of wisdom!

Before I sign off, I shall eat a huge slice of humble pie, for my husband and I let our dogs sleep in our bed with us. They don't move much and tend to be quiet, but there it is. Our friends bring this up when co-sleeping is discussed, and I just have no excuse!
post #43 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
Ya know what? Dad's wants ARE second to baby's needs. So are mom's. That's part of being a parent. Any man who isn't ready to face that, isn't ready to be a dad. I think it's largely a maturity issue.

-Angela
I agree, that's the bottom line.

FWIW, I don't feel like I "need" intimacy with DW any less than before DD was born, but my heart just opened up so much when she came into this world that I feel there's nothing I wouldn't sacrifice for her, and can't imagine it any other way.
post #44 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirrelly View Post
Some of my husband's friends have talked to their wives about this, and were yelled at--one had to stay at our house for a few days.
That sounds like a problem in the marriage that goes way, way beyond co-sleeping. I think if you have to spend "a few nights" at a friends because you talked to your spouse (about anything), blaming co-sleeping is just a red herring. I mean, how good could the relationship be/have been if you have to move out?

Co-sleeping is not, IMO, inherently bad for marriage. Lots of people do it and love it and love the benefits for their family. I think your question has little to do with sleeping arrangements and everything to do with communication problems.
post #45 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by tamagotchi View Post
Squirrelly, I don't understand what you mean by saying that cosleeping is "marginalizing" fathers. Cosleeping gives fathers a chance to be close to baby all night, just like it does with mothers. Fathers can cuddle with the baby and take over some of the night time parenting. From watching my DH interact with our child, it's clear to me that cosleeping has helped him to feel close and involved.

Maybe there is something else going on in your friends' marriages. Are the husbands' complaints really about sex? Or do the husbands feel that they are not getting enough attention from their wives and the babies are getting all the attention? A lot of times that's what husbands mean when they complain about cosleeping.
My husbands needs were not met until a year after having Ronnie. I did have 5 breast surgeries and a long recovery from the birth.
He adores co-sleeping and we gave away our crib.

Although when we do have sex, a bed is the last place I think of. LOL
post #46 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
See, there are some dads who hate diaper changes too- so? Goes with the territory. Baby NEEDS to be with mom- day and night- simple biology. If dad doesn't want baby to breastfeed does he get to veto that too?

-Angela
I agree

Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirrelly View Post
I sent this thread to two of the couples I talked about. All of your comments have been so insightful--I have to admit that I didn't see all the angles of this issue, and I feel a bit more educated!

Regarding our friends, each has some issue that I think could contribute to the problem. One bottle feeds, two breastfeed, and the bottle feeding mom is the most adamant about co-sleeping. Perhaps she wants a kind of closeness she doesn't get with feeding her son.

Anyway, after reading all the comments here, I feel ready to discuss this stuff like crazy with our friends! You've all said things I could not understand or articulate, but after reading what each of you said, I thought, "Yeah! Good point!"

I think I projected myself and my father onto this issue without realizing it, and that certainly clouded my judgment. I apologize, and I thank you again for the great input. I lurk here a lot, and I always find a heck of a lot of wisdom!

Before I sign off, I shall eat a huge slice of humble pie, for my husband and I let our dogs sleep in our bed with us. They don't move much and tend to be quiet, but there it is. Our friends bring this up when co-sleeping is discussed, and I just have no excuse!
HOnestly this is what kills me. Many people don't think twice about letting their pets sleep with them for comfort, but the idea of their helpless, defenseless infant sleeping with them in some how un natural?
post #47 of 87
The one thing we actually said we are not going to do is bring baby into the bed with us. Hubby was going to help with nighttime feeds by burping baby ect. Her cot was set up right next to me. He however fell asleep with baby on him as he was so tired.

To make a long story short. After we moved with her as a 6 week old we just decided to let her sleep in our bed as she use to wake up screaming in the new place and she like never ever cried unless she had pain.

I did ask hubby what he thinks and he told me it is okay until she is 6 months. When 6 months came we discussed it and he said he is fine until she is a year. A year came the other day and we talked and he said it is totally fine with him as she gets really anxious if she is away from me at night and he knows it is the only way I can get sleep. He also knows I am a real worry wart and wont be able to sleep at all. He is totally against CIO.

Now I know I might get stoned here for this. But I feel no matter who is the primary caregiver. There is two parents for a child. And it is of the upmost importance to never ever let your partner feel that his feelings arent important at all. We have discussions about everything of childcare. When something new comes up that we havent dealt with we have a conversation about it as soon as we can.

I will just sit down with my partner and ask him how he feels how we are doing so far. He can bring up anything he wants. Now I know sometimes our feelings get hurt as if it is something personal. But just hear him out. It might not be what he says directly. If it is that he doesnt get some time alone with you. Then arrange some time. We do it when baby is taking a nap. She is totally fine taking naps by herself during the day.

Sometimes just do something special for him. I am sure he will come around then. They just want to feel part of the family. And it is their right to feel like that.
post #48 of 87
Thread Starter 
I think that's healthy--to let your husband air anything he may feel.

Also, I realize that having my dogs sleep with me is hypocritical. I've also had my nephews sleep in my bed with me, although that's hardly enough experience. My dogs are very quiet and don't move once they've found a spot (they're Whippets, if anyone is interested). They are hardly akin to other dogs or children. Children develop and grow, whereas, despite what my dogs tell me, they stay at a sort of infinite state of dorkitude. My nephews, I have found first hand, and from their mothers, develop into kicking, screaming, writhing, yelling beings. It's a good thing that they're darned cute!

Mainly what I want is to be able to discuss this with our friends. I've taken the men's side because I felt it hadn't been heard--I want to be able to discuss this without sounding as if my husband and I are taking sides. The guys I've mentioned really do feel lost, and I did send them this thread and/or spoke with them about what was said. I think that listening to the guy, regardless of your opinion, would make a big difference. Just letting him know that you care about what he thinks would help. That's what I've gleaned from my hubbies' friends!
post #49 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirrelly View Post
I sent this thread to two of the couples I talked about. All of your comments have been so insightful--I have to admit that I didn't see all the angles of this issue, and I feel a bit more educated!

Regarding our friends, each has some issue that I think could contribute to the problem. One bottle feeds, two breastfeed, and the bottle feeding mom is the most adamant about co-sleeping. Perhaps she wants a kind of closeness she doesn't get with feeding her son.

Anyway, after reading all the comments here, I feel ready to discuss this stuff like crazy with our friends! You've all said things I could not understand or articulate, but after reading what each of you said, I thought, "Yeah! Good point!"

I think I projected myself and my father onto this issue without realizing it, and that certainly clouded my judgment. I apologize, and I thank you again for the great input. I lurk here a lot, and I always find a heck of a lot of wisdom!

Before I sign off, I shall eat a huge slice of humble pie, for my husband and I let our dogs sleep in our bed with us. They don't move much and tend to be quiet, but there it is. Our friends bring this up when co-sleeping is discussed, and I just have no excuse!
post #50 of 87
I just wanted to share my experience because my dh us not a big fan of cosleeping anyway here it is:

I let my dh talk me out of cosleeping with dd. At 6 months old I was getting less than 4 hours of sleep 20 minutes at a time. It was torture. I decided that I didn't care what dh thought I was going to cosleep. After a few weeks dh and I discussed it. He still didn't like cosleeping but was willing to keep going because he loved having a happy, well rested wife and baby. A great compromise was to side car the crib so we still had our space and he didn't sleep next to dd (it made him nervous which caused him to not sleep well). We discussed moving dd out of our bed every 3-6 months and consistently came up with the decision to keep going because we liked how much sleep we were all getting. We moved her to her own bed in September and she loves having her own bed now. We are expecting #2 in February and dh is actually excited to cosleep from the beginning because he knows that we will all sleep better that way. Again, he still isn't sold on the idea but is sold on getting more sleep.
I agree that the father's feelings should be heard and taken into consideration, but I think this particular decision is ultimately the mamas.
I also agree with some of the pps. It seems like these couples might have larger issues and cosleeping is the outlet.
I hope they find some peace!
post #51 of 87
Co-sleeping has been difficult here, but DH and I have talked and because DH knows that I do the nighttime parenting, and because DD does not sleep well, we both agree that we are doing the right thing for her. We are BOTH looking forward to having the one place in the house that we can be alone back. I know that may sound harsh to some, but I feel that intimacy is a very real need that seems to be next to impossible in our current situation. It has been hard, but communication has helped. I, also, remind myself and DH how they grow so very quickly and it won't even be an issue in time.
I do think that we do have to be sensitive to our DHs feelings. I didn't realize how hard it had been for DH until some things happened that really got my attention. It wasn't necessarily the co-sleeping in itself, it's more the fact that I am exhausted and have a hard time being what I need to be for the rest of my family because she is a terrible sleeper and when she doesn't wake up the minute we have a chance to have sex (which happens frequently), we have to be careful and quiet pausing at every sigh. What a great sex life.
post #52 of 87
no idea. dh was the biggest mainstream dad ever, now he is at least as chrunchy as me. he loves sleeping with our dd and me, and we both think this is the best thing ever. our marriage became stronger i swear!

...but if a dad doesn't think this way...i have no clue what to do.
post #53 of 87
My DH was initially uncomfortable with the idea of co-sleeping. When I was pg, I had several things that were non-negotiable: co-sleeping, BF, no circ, and a natural birth. All of these are things that his family did not do. I started discussing them early on. BF was no issue; he was all for it. No circ was no issue - just the thought of it upsets him and he was circed. The natural birth was more about me. He didn't fight it. After taking a Bradley class with me, he was very supportive of it (to the point that I started to worry that I'd fail and upset/disappoint him ). Co-sleeping took a bit of work... but I gave him articles to read, and discussed it ad nauseum. He is now a strong proponent of co-sleeping and wouldn't dream of allowing me to change it (if I were so inclined). I personally feel that his sexual "needs" aren't being met, but that is more due to the residual pain from my 4th degree tear (which makes sex excruciating : ).

There are topics that I was less certain about initially - CD and vax come to mind. We discussed these together. I was sure that we'd use sposies. After doing barely any real research, I told him I really wanted to CD, what did he think? I showed him the research. He was 100% in agreement : He now does almost all of the diaper laundry and tells people how great cloth is We're still researching vax, but currently we're not doing them. In fact, I'd have to approach him with wanting to do a certain vax and explain why .

He is getting some disapproval from his family (less than I expected). He defends OUR decisions....

I guess this has gotten quite long and off topic. More or less what I am saying is that some things are non-negotiable. I'm glad that I knew that ahead of time, recognised that DH (and his family) would disagree, and held the discussions before DD was born. Our marriage is stronger now than it was before pregnancy.
post #54 of 87
How did things turn out?
post #55 of 87
There are many comprimises available, when both parents aren't agreeable about co-sleeping. Baby can snooze in a side-car or a crib in the room, for example. Or the parents can do what we ended up doing. I was getting aggrivated with co-sleeping when my daughter was about 14 months old, because she was such a wiggle-worm and was a marathon nurser. If she was near my breasts, she HAD to nurse.non.stop., and I couldn't sleep while she was nursing, for some reason. So we'd start out the night by having her in her own bed. I'd put her to sleep, and then DH and I would climb into bed. We'd have a bit of alone time, and then when DD woke for her nightly feeding, DH would go fetch her and bring her into our bed, where she would spend the rest of the night.

I've always beleived that people are meant to cosleep. Not just kids, but people. I remember growing up, the only time I slept securely was during a period of time when I had to share a bed with my sister. I was an insomniac the rest of the time. It wasn't until I moved in with a boyfriend, and we started sharing a bed, that my insomnia was "cured." If DH is gone overnight, I can't sleep if I'm in an empty bed. I've talked to several friends who feel the same way. Empty bed = no sleep. Warm bodies = cozy sleep time. Most people wouldn't deny their spouse the warm coziness of cosleeping with eachother....why deny a child?
post #56 of 87
I guess the only thing I have to add is a thought about if the situation was turned around. When I was PG with #1, I was pretty mainstream. I believed in extended BF, but that was it. DH talked about co-sleeping before DS was born, but it made me uncomfortable. I didn't really know why, it was just something I couldn't put into words. I did all of the night-time parenting, so he let me have my way at first even though DS only slept for 30-45 minutes at a time. After about 4 months, I was a wreck- depression, sleep deprivation, cranky, and not in the mood for anything intimate with him - even cuddling or kissing. So he put his foot down, the best thing for us, as a family, was for DS to share our bed and for me to learn to nurse him laying down. I tried pulling rank - I'm the one up, so it gets to be my decision - but since I really couldn't put a reason to resisting, I agreed to try it for a week or so. We never turned back.

At 8yo, DS still likes to be snuggled to sleep. I also regained my sanity, especially since he didn't start sleeping more than 3 hours solid until he started school.

Also, by the logic presented by some PP, since my DH became a SAHD 6 years ago he now does more than 50% of the active parenting. There is very little nightime parenting to be done, and I am at work most of the day. So does that mean I should get NO say in the choices on daytime parenting? I find that somewhat insulting, that I should have no input simply because I am not the one doing the work.

We have discussions on every decision, even if DH has to call me at work. I rarely second-guess him, simply because he IS the one there. But if there is something that either of us feels very strongly about we talk it out. We explain our reasons and logic, show each other the research, in short we work together. We never discount the feelings or opinions of the other just because one of thinks it is the "right" thing to do.

DS gets consistancy and DH and I get harmony and a strong marriage.
post #57 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaChicken View Post
I guess the only thing I have to add is a thought about if the situation was turned around. When I was PG with #1, I was pretty mainstream. I believed in extended BF, but that was it. DH talked about co-sleeping before DS was born, but it made me uncomfortable. I didn't really know why, it was just something I couldn't put into words. I did all of the night-time parenting, so he let me have my way at first even though DS only slept for 30-45 minutes at a time. After about 4 months, I was a wreck- depression, sleep deprivation, cranky, and not in the mood for anything intimate with him - even cuddling or kissing. So he put his foot down, the best thing for us, as a family, was for DS to share our bed and for me to learn to nurse him laying down. I tried pulling rank - I'm the one up, so it gets to be my decision - but since I really couldn't put a reason to resisting, I agreed to try it for a week or so. We never turned back.

At 8yo, DS still likes to be snuggled to sleep. I also regained my sanity, especially since he didn't start sleeping more than 3 hours solid until he started school.

Also, by the logic presented by some PP, since my DH became a SAHD 6 years ago he now does more than 50% of the active parenting. There is very little nightime parenting to be done, and I am at work most of the day. So does that mean I should get NO say in the choices on daytime parenting? I find that somewhat insulting, that I should have no input simply because I am not the one doing the work.

We have discussions on every decision, even if DH has to call me at work. I rarely second-guess him, simply because he IS the one there. But if there is something that either of us feels very strongly about we talk it out. We explain our reasons and logic, show each other the research, in short we work together. We never discount the feelings or opinions of the other just because one of thinks it is the "right" thing to do.

DS gets consistancy and DH and I get harmony and a strong marriage.
I wouldn't say you have no say in the daytime parenting, but less. Dh stayed home one day a week when ds was little and I didn't think if was my place to tell dh what to do in his time with ds. I might say, "I think he is watching a little too much tv," but I'm at work. Dh is the one trying to balance housework, baby care, sanity, so he got the final call.

I'd certainly take dh's opinion on co-sleeping into consideratin, but if I am the one with serious lack of sleep, I get the final call. Anyway, why is it that if I LISTEN to my dh, but don't agree, he assumes I'm not LISTENING?
post #58 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirrelly View Post
Yikes!!

I never intended for this to be so...um...zesty, and for that, I'm sorry. I just wish both mothers and fathers would be equal partners in raising a kid, but I doubt that will ever happen. The friends I first mentioned are just getting a bit touchy about everything, which is why I thought I'd post here.

I really do want to know how to talk to the fathers, since the mothers of these babies I mentioned seem to know what they're doing, but the fathers don't. Does that make more sense? I just want to be able to give good advice, and I'd personally like these guys to be good and involved fathers.
Hi Squirrelly -

I've skimmed your posts - and you are so "right on" on some of these issues I thought that I should jump in this thread to let you know that I totally agree.

2 parents to make a baby. 2 parents to parent the baby. both parents should get a vote - period. And I too have witnessed the mothers who on the one hand "complain" that there husband doesn't help or doesn't do this or doesn't do that --- and then on the other hand I watch the poor guy get critisized about whatever he does do and I watch the mom refuse to let him do a lot of things because he doesn't "do it right" (as though she has the corner on the "do it right" market) blah blah blah . . . .

I think your thread has gotten zesty because it touches on a zesty AP topic - the dad's role with the child. Read Sears - he'll tell you the role is basically nada for the first few years?? I don't agree and I have met others on these boards that also don't agree it makes any kind of sense to cut a father out in those first years (and heartbreaking for the dads who are so wanting to be a care provider)

As to your original post -- We co-sleep with DS - he is 4. I agree with the dad's concerns - it does interfere with their relationship with the wife. In the beginning, when nursing demands are so extreme - having the baby sleep in or out of the bed isn't really going to make a diff one way or another. I mean - the baby has a LOT of night needs and those come first. period. But as the child grows older and older - I found that DS really really did interfere with my relationship with DH. Recently we asked DS to sleep in our room, but on his own mattress. He agreed. And the first night we did that I was bowled over when I realized that I hadn't "touched" DH while sleeping in years! I hadn't snuggled with him while sleeping at all in 4 years. This definitely spilled over into our daytime affection for each other - we used to be quite affectionate - but realized that we hardly ever kiss, hug, hold hands - like we used to. So yes - for us - as time wore on, co-sleeping did interfere with DH and I and I am glad to have him back now!

PS - our triplets show no signs of wanting to co-sleep?? Probably a good thing as I have no earthly idea how we'd all fit. Unless of course I turned my bedroom into a big pile of mattresses. Works for some. Not too appealing to me.
post #59 of 87
My husband was the first to DO cosleeping with our son. It was a survival instinct when our son refused to sleep anywhere else. From the first night he slept with us (usually ON us)

Our daughter has been a little different as we were both rather scared to cosleep because she was so tiny. When she came home from the NICU she was 4 pounds 6 ounces and she slept in a bassinet pushed up next to the bed so all I had to do was reach an arm out to check on her (which I did VERY frequently, and often slept with my arm in the bassinet and me body curled on the edge of the bed next to her). She slept a 6 hours stretch the first night home, and has pretty much continued to have at least one 6 hour stretch unless she's getting ready for a growth spurt. Then I'm lucky to enjoy a 2 hour stretch

We've started moving to her being in bed with us now that she's bigger, though my husband has reservations. He knows she needs to be close to us, but that time in the NICU has made him scared he could hurt her. Something he never worried about with Ryan. In fact he advocated to other dads how easy it was. Perhaps it might help if your husband could discuss the good points of cosleeping with the other dads?

All this is to say we've made a compromise for Adara to sidecar a crib that we never used before so that she can have a space and we can have a space. They will be the same space, but it helped ease my husband's issue.
post #60 of 87
I just have to chime in about Dr. Sears. I have The Baby Book and I have always found that he encourages the fathers to be involved so that mama doesn't get totally burned out....I never got the feeling that he talks about the work being on the mama alone for the first year...that would kill me!!
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