Logistics of cosleeping toddler and newborn baby... How is it done?? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 12 Old 03-22-2013, 08:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I just found out I'm pregnant, so I have a long while to think about this, but I'd love some tips.  My DS will be almost 3 years old when this baby arrives and we are trying to decide on the best way to make a smooth transition and get the most sleep for everyone!  Currently, DS is 24 months old, and he starts the night off in his own bed in his room, but every single night comes in to our bed around midnight.  He is fully weaned.  

 

Some ideas my DH and I have thrown around include:

 

Trying to get him to stay in his room all night (Hahahahaha)

Putting a mattress on the floor by our bed for when he joins us and getting him to use that.

Continue to let him join us in bed, and when the new baby arrives, just keep her in a crib right next to our bed so that we don't have to worry about an infant and a huge two year old on the same mattress.

 

With this new baby, I would actually prefer to keep her in a crib in our room instead of in bed with us, until she is old enough to come climb in by herself.  I found co sleeping with my son as a tiny infant a bit nerve wracking honestly, but it was the only way we got any sleep.  

 

Anyway, I'm just feeling jittery about how we are going to work out the sleeping arrangement, even though it's still almost 9 months away!  If anyone has any stories of what worked (or didn't) for them when welcoming a new baby into a cosleeping family with older toddlers or preschoolers, I'd love to hear it.  

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#2 of 12 Old 03-22-2013, 12:13 PM
 
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When we were in your shoes, we sidecarred a crib next to my side of the bed, and our tot slept there. The arrangement worked wonders! Tots are careless sleepers, so I don't recommend putting yours next to the baby for sleeping.

There are a number of online tutorials for side-carring. Good luck!

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#3 of 12 Old 03-23-2013, 08:26 AM
 
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We have a different arrangement and it has it's own issues but it's my plan so far. I'm 22 weeks, DD is 24 months and she doesn't sleep in our bed. She has a very low double bed in her own room and has been on it since about 18 months. I lay down and nurse her to sleep then get up and leave. We live in a very old house and the doorknobs are very sticky and hard to turn. That means she stays in her room and calls for me when she needs me. I sleep with the baby monitor and get up, go in, change her and nurse her back down, then go back to bed. We don't cosleep in our room since DH has medical issues and our bed is really high. I often end up drifting off and cosleeping with her part time and usually cosleep all night when she's sick. We have the crib for baby in the third bedroom and I plan to go in and nurse baby as needed on a very comfy reclining rocker. I also plan to get a light bassinet/Moses basket so I can take baby into DD's room if she has a particularly rough night. Now keep in mind that this is all theory and I'm still months away from trying it. In your situation maybe your DH could go lay down with DS so he stays in his room. What size bed does he have? I have to train DD not to be such a bed hog; I still end up perched on the edge despite all that mattress real estate lol
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#4 of 12 Old 03-23-2013, 01:38 PM
 
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When we were in this situation, (but our kiddos are 16 months apart), DH slept with DS on a seperate matteress while I slept with DD. It worked out really well. 


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#5 of 12 Old 03-23-2013, 02:05 PM
 
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We did something similar to the PP. When my son was about 27 mos we transitioned him to his own room, with a queen bed in there. I started sleeping with him in there so he would stay put. Then when baby arrived a few mos later, my husband started sleeping with him b/c of all the newborn wakeups. He needed his sleep for work. It worked out great for us.
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#6 of 12 Old 03-23-2013, 11:17 PM
 
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I'm interested in hearing more ideas, too. We cosleep with DS, who will be 28 mos when baby arrives, and I have no idea how this is going to work! I don't think we'll be ready to transition him out of our bed by then, but I'm not sure what else to do.

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#7 of 12 Old 03-24-2013, 12:21 AM
 
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I'm sort of in the same boat, though my dd is a bit older (she will.be 3yrs 4mo when baby comes.) We currently have a queen bed with a sidecarred crib on my side. DD spends most of the night on the crib mattress, but since my colostrum has come in she has shown a distinct uptick in interest/frequency of nursing and will sometimes half-wake-up and flop over me to get to the other breast. I'm concerned about how her increased interest in nursing is going to pan out with a needy newborn around (I was really hoping that she would self-wean during this pregnancy.) I'm also concerned about the possibility of her smothering the new baby with her half-asleep flopping and such. We bought a First Years fold out co-sleeper, which is basically a separate sleep surface with little "walls" which is intended to go on the bed between the parents. We used it a little when dd was little, and it definitely worked to make us more aware of her presence, and thus prevent over-rolling. But obviously there is a huge difference in the awareness of a sleeping adult vs a 3 yr old. So we are considering the possibility of getting an Arm's Reach mini for the other side of the bed and just using that until the new baby is better able to fend for herself, so to speak. But even the mini would significantly reduce the space in our already cramped bedroom, so we'll see.

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#8 of 12 Old 03-28-2013, 09:48 AM
 
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I'm expecting our 2nd to show up in the next month or so and since we found out we were having another one we've been trying to take steps get DS (2.5 yo) to be a bit more independent about his sleep. We haven't made as much progress as we hoped but this is our plan and what we've been doing.

 

We sidecarred a crib next to our king bed. We put DS to sleep in his room (he has a double bed) and when he wakes up DH goes in to sleep with him or lays with him till he's back asleep then leaves if he wants to sleep with me. He always ends up in with DS at some point though. When DH is tired and doesn't want to have to get up from our bed and go into my son's room, he'll just go straight in there to sleep. The baby will sleep in the sidecarred crib. We're hoping DS will start not needing DH to sleep with him so much and then DH will sleep in with me and the baby. Sometime soon...hopefully.


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#9 of 12 Old 03-28-2013, 10:08 AM
 
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I am also in this predicament! So I'm also looking for ideas! My son will be 3 years and 6 months when the baby is born in May. We have a queen size bed quite high off the floor, and his crib is side carred to my husbands side of the bed. My son did great with this arrangement when we first found out I was pregnant. (Didn't want any unwanted kicks to the belly) I thought this will be perfect, I'll just use a bed rail on my side and switch baby depending on which side I'm nursing on. But now by the middle of the night my son makes his way between my husband and I. And it's almost always unnoticed. (Sneaky little fella) so it's worrying me quite a bit to bring a baby into the bed and have my son moving about as he pleases.

I've been trying to tell him he has to stay in his "bed" but lately he won't and I don't think it will get any better with a new baby. I'm thinking the separate bed idea will be our only safe option. Unless I side car a co-sleeper to the other side. I told my husband I could just use the bassinet that we had bought for DS that wasn't used, and he isn't keen on it. He loves bed sharing.

Guess I better figure it out soon, only 9 weeks til due date!

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#10 of 12 Old 04-30-2013, 08:33 AM
 
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I have tried reading multiple books on bed sharing over the last 9 months, The Family Bed, The Attachment Parenting Book, Natural Family Living, Nighttime Parenting, and the list goes on. None of these books address this issue!

 

I am a little worried because our second child is due in only 2 weeks now, and I have a 2 1/2 year old that exclusively bed shares with us. We have a queen mattress on the floor of our room, and a smaller (almost crib size) bed next to ours for her. She sleeps in in about once every month. We have been working on getting her into that bed for months, and nothing has worked.

 

We don't have the option of getting a bigger bed (a king wouldn't fit up our narrow stairway in our old house). A co-sleeper for baby won't work since our bed is on the floor, because our bedframe wouldn't fit up the stairs either. I have spoken with a few moms and dads who have shared their bed with a newborn AND another sibling, but they did say it was difficult but eventually their older child wanted to go in his/her own bed. Could anyone tell me if this plan (to keep us all in one bed for now) is even safe? I'm hoping to have my older daughter on the outside edge, next to my husband, and then the baby in between us. Any thoughts would be appreciated! 

 

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#11 of 12 Old 04-30-2013, 12:54 PM
 
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Have you seen those fold-up cosleepers from The First Years? If I were you i would try one of those or a moses basket on the floor next to the bed (and an adult body between the toddler and edge of the bed, so she doesnt roll off the bed onto baby) until the new one outgrows it, and hopefully by then you will be able to move everyone into the bed/crib combo?

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#12 of 12 Old 05-01-2013, 02:34 PM
 
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Thanks for the advice! I recently bought a moses basket, thinking of it for nap times. I could see how it would be good for nighttime too though. 

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