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#61 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 04:29 PM
 
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Also want to add that I think the % of who makes the nighttime decisions is dependent on how difficult nighttime parenting is for the parents. I have friends who can sleep while nursing and don't seem too thrown off by broken sleep for years on end. I, on the other hand, desperately need consolidated sleep so the nighttime nursing is very hard on me. I do it but pay a hefty price. We're commited to doing it for the first year and then will consider night weaning. I have a 4 year old who needs a sane/energetic/positive mama during the day and there are days when I'm anything but that.

There's no right way to do it or to make the decision. It's a very unique process for each family.
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#62 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 04:32 PM
 
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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!!
See below for what I read on the website about the dad's role with the newborn. We can debate it - but it certainly seems to say that the mom is "it" - and the dad's role is stronger once the baby is a toddler. And actually - he really charactizes the dad's role as being unnatural to the dad - for instance, the mom is suppose to have dad hold the baby when he is happy and well rested - to "set dad up for success". And later on he talks about how dad gets more involved as the kids get to 1 or 2 -- but not in a caregiving way - the examples he uses are "going for ice cream or going to the park"? I just disagree . . . .

Here is the link http://www.askdrsears.com/faq/ap2.asp

And I excerpt it here too.

"I don't understand the Attachment Parenting concept. My sister follows your books. I am very concerned about the fact that she will not leave her 7-month-old son with our parents. Do you feel that there should be a bond with grandparents? My parents are very upset about this. I feel for his father, as there is no bond. The mother child bond is very important but what about bonding with family, friends, society? The father has only been with his son once by himself in 7 months!! How does this play out?"

How your sister is raising her infant may seem foreign to you, but she is just doing what comes naturally. This is how this will "play out":

For the first year or two, a child is primarily bonded to his mother. We see this pattern in many animal species, too. I wouldn't be concerned because this plays out very positively. Kids raised this way grow to be very bonded with their parents and out of this grows great confidence as they reach school age. As a result, they are ready to take on the rest of society. Mom and her infant develop a bond that is so strong, it is an instinct for both of them to be together. They learn to read each others subtle cues -- they "tune-in" to each other. Most infants tend to "need" their mommies quite frequently, so it is difficult for mom to be more than a few minutes away. My wife wasn't ready to be away from her baby for the first year and I respected that. Then, later, when our child was a toddler and had some other baby friends, we were able to get away for a quick dinner. Later that year my wife felt more comfortable leaving longer so that we could go out for a movie. When our child was four-years-old, we were able to take a few days away.

Dad's involvement certainly is less during the first 6-9 months, but he should try to spend time holding and rocking the baby. Mom should try to help by letting him hold baby when baby is well rested, and in a good mood. Setting dad up for success like this will help them to develop a good bond. Dad's bond usually is much stronger once the baby is a toddler. Yes, I did feel a little "left-out" when my kids were very young, but as they reached 1-2-years-old, I was able to get more involved. We had fun going for ice cream or to the park.

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#63 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 04:32 PM
 
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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. .
But only 1 mama up at night breastfeeding. . . seriously, if dad wants to get up 50% of the time to bottle feed breastmilk to a baby, to have a monitor next to his pillow so he is the only one who wakes up when the baby stirs in the next room, then he gets 50% of the vote. My dh wasn't willing to do that. I was the only one losing sleep, so my call.
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#64 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 04:38 PM
 
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But only 1 mama up at night breastfeeding. . . seriously, if dad wants to get up 50% of the time to bottle feed breastmilk to a baby, to have a monitor next to his pillow so he is the only one who wakes up when the baby stirs in the next room, then he gets 50% of the vote. My ds wasn't willing to do that. I was the only one losing sleep, so my call.
You should have excerpted the rest of my post? I address that . . .

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#65 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 10:36 PM
 
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TripMom, I understand what you're saying that both parents need to be involved. I don't think Sears is saying that dad shouldn't be involved...in fact, his involvement is critical to a mother's sanity. But, the reality is that young babies do need their moms and often quite frequently (especially if breastfeeding). I would never leave my 7 month old with the grandparents for the very reasons that sears describes in his response. I had that experience of my MIL holding the baby while he screamed...she kept insisting it was gas and that he wasn't hungry. When I finally managed to get him back, he immediately calmed down at the breast. I still look back at that instance and regret that I didn't grab him from her sooner....my body literally ached for him during those moments and my DH did not have that experience. I think what Sears described is a real experience for many mothers.

I guess I have to say that it's often true that a young baby needs his mother most during those first months. She is the source of food and security for him. Dad can do a lot of comforting but ultimately the baby needs his mother to survive (again if b'feeding). And since cosleeping at the beginning is often done because it makes night nursing easier, it seems that the mother should have a bit more say in that decision.
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#66 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 10:45 PM
 
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You should have excerpted the rest of my post? I address that . . .
I still don't see it? :
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#67 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 10:51 PM
 
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I still don't see it? :
Hmm? I say in my post that the baby has so many night needs during the first year that whether they are in the bed or out of the bed will not really increase/decrease the affect on the DH's relationship with the Mom. My point was - these dads need to accept that for a long while the "nights" are the babies. So who cares where they sleep in the beginning - they should have a say -- but its not going to really change anything? But later on . . . .

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#68 of 87 Old 01-04-2007, 11:01 PM
 
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I'm sorry. I'm not trying to be dense .

I didn't understand the point you were making about the early months.

I don't understand the part about "they should have a say- but it's not really going to change anything. . "
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#69 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 05:02 AM
 
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Like some other posters have pointed out, I would point out what the "real scenario" would be if the babe didn't co-sleep and dad had to step up to the plate and help out with the nightime parenting more because NOT co sleeping would be harder on the mom and dad would have to help out.

My dh is so much happier that we are co sleeping more with our second than we did with our first. She has slept with us from day one and he has never slept so GOOD! He tells all of his male friends that their wives should breastfeed and co sleep because it is way easier on him as a dad. He has stepped up even more now as she is older ( almost 2) and I'm pregnant and tired and he sleeps in the middle and takes care of her at night. There is no way he would want her out of our bed and we are working on scenarios on how to cosleep with her AND babe when that happens.


But anyways.....I would tell the dads that it would be only fair to help out more if they don't want babies in their bed. Like what? Going to babe when he/she wakes, bringing babe to mom, putting babe back to sleep after mom is done nursing. See how that one sits....

Heather , momma to ' Parker- 10, Carlee- 7 and our baby Genevieve Faith - 8-27-10

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#70 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 06:20 PM
 
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It seems that everyone accepts it as a given that it is easier to co-sleep with a newborn than not. I disagree. I sleep horribly when I am laying next to a baby - I never get deep restorative sleep. I much preferred getting up for feedings and sleeping separately if the baby was OK with that. I mean - you have to get up anyway to change their diaper? I just don't see it as so much better - it was always preferable for me to sleep without the baby right next to me in the bed.

Just thought I'd add that as well - since the thread takes as given that everyone feels "co-sleeping = more sleep"? Not so for me. . . .

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#71 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 08:05 PM
 
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From an evolutionary point of view, babies and mama's have evolved to sleep together. It significantly decreases sids (when done correctly). It increases the bond between mom and baby, mom's sleep cycles mirror babies, it increase milk supply, etc. Until recently, evolutionarily speaking, babies survival depended on mothers closeness for warmth, for protection. So I think when you mess with this process that has evolved over hundreds and thousands of years, you are bound to run into trouble. As far as father is concerned, yes, his opinions count, but isn't the babies health and safety more of a priority?

As for co-sleeping affecting the husband wife bond, I have not experienced this, I am happy to say. If anything, we are more affectionate during the day since we don't have the night to snuggle as much. I feel that dh's respect for what was best for babe made me feel even more loving towards him.

 
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#72 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 09:01 PM
 
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TripMom, I agree with you that not everyone sleeps better with the baby in bed with them. That is certainly very true. And I agree with you that a lot of these posts seem to be implying that cosleeping means more sleep for everyone.

I agree with the pp about the evolutionary aspects of baby/mother sleep. But there are a lot of things that evolve (meaning, change) over time and sleep arrangements are among them. I think for a lot of parents, the issue of not getting enough sleep is huge. We don't live in a culture or time where the parents get community support during the early months...they continue to have to work and manage, often on their own, during the day which requires a certain amount of rest. Some moms do very well with very little sleep, but many don't (myself included).

I do cosleep but that's because it provides the best arrangement for all of us...not because I am against cribs or a hardcore advocate for cosleeping.

Again, it's what's best for each individual and the family as a whole. I think we all get so worked up about these issues because we want validation for how we're doing it. I think parenting is one aspect of life that really triggers those defenses. It doesn't do much to help us support one another when we're always trying to defend our choices so that we feel good about them.

This is a bit off topic, but I feel like on these boards when moms are categorized into "ap" and "mainstream" that immediately puts a wedge between us. I seem to fall more into the ap style but that has just been an organic process of finding what sits well with me as a mother. I have a lot of friends who might be considered more "mainstream" and I never think of us with those distinctions. We're all mothers who love our children and are doing what is best for our particular families.

Sorry to rant...I think it's great to debate things but often these sensitive issues turn into debates even when the OP is just looking for feedback/suggestions/ideas. I do like that on babycenter they have a specific debate board so if that's what you want to do it's appropriate.

Ok, enough already from me.
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#73 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 09:19 PM
 
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I was speaking on a biological evolutionary time line. Bioligical evolution does not take place as quickly as things like cultural "evolution". Again, biologically speaking, babies are better equipped to co-sleep than not.

I do agree that what works for the family is certainly important, but I do think that what is best for the baby should be the top priority when making that decision. But I do understand that an extremely exhausted mama who can't parent during the day because of loss of sleep at night is certainly a risk to the baby as well. And I absolutely agree that there needs to be more support within our societies to make this more easily done for mothers and fathers. Cultural evolution usually far out paces biological evolution.

 
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#74 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 09:27 PM
 
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This is a bit off topic, but I feel like on these boards when moms are categorized into "ap" and "mainstream" that immediately puts a wedge between us. I seem to fall more into the ap style but that has just been an organic process of finding what sits well with me as a mother. I have a lot of friends who might be considered more "mainstream" and I never think of us with those distinctions. We're all mothers who love our children and are doing what is best for our particular families.
MDC is a site particularly for natural family living and advocates natural solutions to parenting challenges. So with that in mind, those are the type of responses and parenting styles that are advocated on MDC. I tshould not be surprising than if the majority of responses reflect those views.

 
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#75 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 09:36 PM
 
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Agreed. I think sleep is affected almost entirely by culture and not biology these days. We wake to go to work, school, etc. We don't go to bed and rise when our bodies tell us that we've had enough sleep. At least not most of us...our sleep is usually dictated by our schedules and not by our bodies natural rhythms.

I also have to say that some babies really do better when they sleep alone. I think this is simply temperment. Some babies need proximity more than others. Some babies wake more when they are near mama and sleep more soundly when they have their space. Yes, biologically there are trends but we human beings are very complex creatures and babies are so different. Anyone with more than one child can usually attest to that.
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#76 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 09:38 PM
 
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True, true!

 
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#77 of 87 Old 01-05-2007, 09:49 PM
 
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Yes, I know about MDC...used to subscribe to the magazine when my first was little. Even though, I wish that we could be more open-minded and less judgemental. I know I'm very judgemental and it's not a quality I find terribly attractive...especially when it comes to judging other mamas. We bring so much to the role of mother (our own childhood, our politics, values, etc.)....I guess it would be nice if even though "ap" is the majority view here (I'm one as well) we could understand that other folks simply can't do it this way for a variety of reasons. A dear friend of mine experienced pretty severe PPD after her first born and it made mothering a newborn extremely difficult and actually quite traumatic for her. I can really understand that experience. It is really hard in our society with little support for parents.

This is getting quite off topic...sorry about that.
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#78 of 87 Old 01-06-2007, 03:20 AM
 
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It sounds like the conflict is entirely in the relationship of the people in this situation - cosleeping is just the issue they're fighting about, but it's not the real issue. The real issue is the fighting.
:

My XH and I fought about so many things, but co-sleeping was never one of them (and he's generally a lot less AP than me). DD9 actually outlasted his time in my bed. I'm lucky that DH loves nothing more than waking up with both girls fighting over who gets to put her head on his chest.
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#79 of 87 Old 01-06-2007, 04:17 AM
 
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We only co-sleep because it gives us more sleep. It was not our original plan. . .it was survival!


But, I guess we are off topic. It was the husbands. Actually, I don't remember, did the OP ever tell us the mothers' reasons for wanting to cosleep? I assumed it was to get more sleep--??
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#80 of 87 Old 01-06-2007, 10:59 AM
 
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Yes, I know about MDC...used to subscribe to the magazine when my first was little. Even though, I wish that we could be more open-minded and less judgemental. I know I'm very judgemental and it's not a quality I find terribly attractive...especially when it comes to judging other mamas. We bring so much to the role of mother (our own childhood, our politics, values, etc.)....I guess it would be nice if even though "ap" is the majority view here (I'm one as well) we could understand that other folks simply can't do it this way for a variety of reasons. A dear friend of mine experienced pretty severe PPD after her first born and it made mothering a newborn extremely difficult and actually quite traumatic for her. I can really understand that experience. It is really hard in our society with little support for parents.

This is getting quite off topic...sorry about that.
Yes, if it is putting the baby in danger during the day due to lack of sleep of parents, definately an issue that needs to be addressed. But it doesn't sound like these are the issues that these father's are having with the cosleeping. Sounds like these are issues, not about the health and safety of the babies, but completely about the dhs. In my opinion, that sort of thing should come secondary to the babies health.

As for the PPD, it is a horrible thing to go through. It can be devastating, but there are some with PPD who actually do better sleeping with the babe if they get more rest. Yes, I have experience in this.

 
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#81 of 87 Old 01-06-2007, 04:51 PM
 
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You're right, race_kelly...I had the same experience with PPD and having my baby close to me was a necessity to my sanity...I would have stayed awake worrying all night long if he weren't by my side.

I got way off topic...I really agree with everything you're saying. I just start to feel that we can get a bit one-sided and make it sound as though other, less ap, types of parenting are somehow not as good.

I'm going to blame my tangential thoughts on my current state of massive sleep deprivation!
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Barb36-
I hope you get some rest!

 
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#83 of 87 Old 01-06-2007, 10:57 PM
 
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After reading this thread, I have to say that I am extremely thankful for my dh. To him, snuggling under a blankie with ds is one of the sweetest parts of his morning. When I leave for work at 6am, and see the two of them in bed together, my heart melts.
(We only parttime co-sleep, since six months, following ds's lead).
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#84 of 87 Old 01-07-2007, 12:49 PM
 
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I also have to say that some babies really do better when they sleep alone. I think this is simply temperment. Some babies need proximity more than others. Some babies wake more when they are near mama and sleep more soundly when they have their space. Yes, biologically there are trends but we human beings are very complex creatures and babies are so different. Anyone with more than one child can usually attest to that.
Very good point. My older DS is a very adamant co-sleeper. My triplets do not like it at all - and prefer to be together in their own room.

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#85 of 87 Old 01-07-2007, 12:54 PM
 
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This is a bit off topic, but I feel like on these boards when moms are categorized into "ap" and "mainstream" that immediately puts a wedge between us. I seem to fall more into the ap style but that has just been an organic process of finding what sits well with me as a mother. I have a lot of friends who might be considered more "mainstream" and I never think of us with those distinctions. We're all mothers who love our children and are doing what is best for our particular families.
Well said. And I might add that I think the "core" of AP is an approach to parenting that prioritizes responding to the childs needs. If you have a child who does not care to co-sleep - than it seems to me that one should not force the child to co-sleep. For those who have not had a child who does not care to co-sleep, I am sure this is hard to imagine and the instinct is to assume that the parent is "forcing" this - so not true. Anyway - one of the many problems with the "checklist" approach to AP -- and back to your original OT point - more polarizing of parental styles . . .

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#86 of 87 Old 05-25-2013, 03:48 AM
 
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I know that this is a very old post, but dh has been pressuring me to put our 6 month old ds in a crib or bassinet. I'm the one who has been getting up with him and feeding him, changing him since birth and he's been getting most of the sleep. Because of this,I don't think he really has a say. I have been sleeping with the baby in another room since birth and it has been easier on me with breastfeeding. . But he sent me this recent article on how co- sleeping can raise the chances of SIDS http://www.news.com.au/national-news/nsw-act/study-sheds-new-light-on-cot-deaths/story-fnii5s3x-1226647801128#ixzz2U1pmvL5J so he feels justified in his belief. I co- slept with our other two ds now 9 and 7 with no problems at all. It's more old an issue that there isn't as much intimacy- I'm touched out from "on demand" bf, so sending me this article may be out of concern on his part, but there also seem to be ulterior motives behind it. Thoughts anyone on how to convince him that co-sleeping is safe for our 6 month old?
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#87 of 87 Old 05-26-2013, 03:51 PM
 
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I would look to James McKenna of University Notre Dame for safe co-sleeping research. Good Luck.
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