Currently both our daughters, 4 and 1.5, sleep in their own rooms. I'd like to have them sleep with us occasionally, but not regularly, but am stymied with how to work around certain issues. So I'm asking those who currently bed share how they deal with these issues.
One of the things I would like to hear about is how do cosleeping families work around differing bedtimes. Our daughters go to bed around 7:30 but me and DH don't retire till around 10:30 (and sometimes much later). We also get up eariier than the girls at around 6:30 and DD2 doesn't wake until about 6:45 and DD1 not until 7:30-8:00. If you're all sharing the same room, how do you go to bed without waking the LOs? How do you get up and go about your morning ritual (stationary bike, bathroom, showering, etc.) without waking the LOs? How do you deal with one child who rises (quite energetically!) earlier than the other(s)? Our master bedroom has the traditional attached bathroom with no door so there's no way to shield sounds from the bathroom.
Also, when DH and I go to bed, there's probably about 1/2 - 1 hr of bedtime ritual before actual lights out and sleeping. Like bathroom, brushing teeth, washing faces, reading books or doing crosswords or a little computer work in bed, etc. Both daughters were in our room in a co-sleeper until they were about 6-8 mos old before they went to their own room. When our daughters were getting around 5 mos old, it became an ardurous task of tiptoeing around in VERY dim light trying to get ready for bed and trying to VERY quietly slip between the sheets so as to not wake the infant. If we didn't do a good job, we had a crying baby who wasn't happy about being wakened. We HAD to get them in their own room so that they could have undisturbed sleep. So I'm very interested to hear how families work around these issues while maintaining a family bed.
Also, for those with a family bed, what about when someone's having a tough night (or week!) like sick, teething, etc. Doesn't that ruin everyone's sleep for a while?
When DD1 was 3.5 and DD2 was 8 mos we moved DD2 out of our room into the "girls' room" because we thought they'd like sleeping near each other. DD2's disruptive sleeping was making DD1 grouchy and irritable during the day because her own sleep was being negatively impacted, so we had to move DD2 into her own room. We kept a pack-n-play in DD1's room in the hope/expectation that DD2 might spend some nights there once her sleeping was more regular (teething has been a constant disrupter), but DD1 appears ambivalent about having DD2 sleep in her room. She asks for it a lot, but if we attempt it she gets all out of sorts during their bedtime routine so we have to abort the plan and put DD2 in her own room. And DD2 seems to like having her own room and doesn't seem interested in sharing with her big sis.
I guess my question regarding that is how does anyone get a good night sleep with all the bodies so close together? Seems like the more bodies you have the more potential for someone having issues on any given night and causing a problem for the whole family??? Just curious how this works out as I haven't really seen any posts addressing this.
Me, myself, I didn't cosleep with my parents and I also remember having the feeling that I wasn't allowed in the parents' room. My folks divorced when I was 5, but neither household had any kind of "inviting" presence regarding the bedroom. I love it now that my 4yo comes into our room upon waking and I get to see her morning face (and hair!) and I get to greet her with a smile. I also would like our 4yo to sleep in our bed occasionally, but when I've tried she starts getting into our things (like playing with lotion or vasaline or nail files, whatever) while we're not in the room and I have to send her back to her own room. And I can't have our 20mo daughter sleep with us because with me being in such close proximity she'll want to nurse all night long and I can't sleep while nursing, it's too disruptive to my sleep. FWIW, she started sleeping through the night early and hasn't night nursed since she was about 3 mos old (lucky me!!!), even when she was sleeping in a co-sleeping in our room. She's almost 20 mos and nurses about 3-4x/day, upon waking, before or after nap(or both) and at bedtime.
So, I'm just curious how co-sleeping families address these issues as I'd like to co-sleep occasionally, but just can't figure out the logistics. We do have a king sized bed, so I'm not too concerned with space, though I do toss and turn a bit because of shoulder issues. Suggestions? Comments??