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DH and I are having disagreements on how to care for our 15 mo old DD, I hope you don'd mind a vent… he’s a very gentle loving guy but with a very short fuse sometimes, and as the stay-at-home parent he bears the brunt of the care for DD which wears him down even more. These are our issues:<br><br>
1) Co-Sleeping<br>
When DD falls asleep I’ll put her in her crib, but when she wakes up later we’ll bring her to bed with us. There she proceeds to kick us around in her sleep so neither of us parents sleeps well, plus we end up needing to see the chiropractor fairly often.<br><br>
It took a LOT of heartburn and heartache to get DH to agree to doing co-sleeping. TBH, I’m not thrilled too much either with the arrangement but I refuse to let DD cry herself to sleep so I’m willing to deal with the discomfort.<br><br>
Some of the moms in his playgroups have talked about how well CIO worked for them, I have to keep reminding him that each child is different, and that they’re probably not telling him the whole story (ie you only hear the Good Stories from them). Every time we have a lot of sleep troubles with DD, for example when teething, he complains that we should have tried CIO. Usually at 4am, grr. He complains that we lost our window of opportunity by not doing CIO when she was smaller.<br><br>
He is also reminding me that if I want baby #2 we need to clear out baby#1 from our bed soon. Yeah we could be intimate any where in theory but in reality he’s not going to be comfy anywhere else. PLUS he’s very worried about being stuck with two babies in our Queen sized bed.<br><br>
Given that I’m 41 I don’t have the luxury of waiting a few years for DD to outgrow co-sleeping (not if I want babe #2), so I need to figure out soon how to encourage her to sleep more in her crib. Right now if she’s the least bit awake when I put her in the crib, she’ll stand up and beg for us to pick her up. I’m off tomorrow to B&N to hunt for the latest Pantley book (I hear it deals with toddler sleep issues).<br><br>
2) Discipline<br>
I am starting to study up on Gentle Discipline because it just makes sense to me. His instincts are not quite there I think – though he’d never spank etc he does use a strong (almost yelling) voice with her when she’s “acting up” in his view. I tried to tell him that we need to address the root cause (hungry/sleepy/etc), but that just got him upset because he’s the one that has to deal with any tantrums in the day and he really wants some sort of quick fix because he doesn’t have the patience to deal with tantrums all day long. I should probably say that so far tantrums have been the exception not the rule. I suggested hiring part time help for him but he’s not very interested.<br><br>
3) Exclusion feeling<br>
Mostly he’s upset because he is feeling excluded from deciding how we bring up DD. His ‘mainstream’ ideas that he gets from his playgroup friends are not being accepted by me. I’m the one bringing in any AP ideas, and being very insistent on the key areas I care about (such as CIO and co-sleeping and disciplining). I DO try and educate him but I’m learning as I go along too so sometimes I’m going on instinct. So he feels I’m just ignoring his ideas and opinions and giving him no choice on how to raise DD.<br><br>
Sorry for the long post/rant, I just HAD to vent somewhere where I’d be understood!<br><br>
-Ana
 

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Hi,<br>
I am a single mom so I do not have alot of those issues...which sometimes is nice but sometimes is not. My daughter who is 6 still crawls in my bed and it make for a rough night as she is a very rough sleeper...kicking and thrashing around. If you could afford it I would go out and buy a king size bed I think that would help alot. As an alternative idea do you think if you put her mattress next to you guys on the floor she would sleep there at least you wouldnt get kicked? As far as different views on parenting how bout if you bought some books that are more towards your view and then you oculd both read them. You could ask for his suggestions in choosing what he thinks would work well. He might feel more included but all the ideas would lean towards what you want.
 

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I have had the same argument with my DH on several occasions.<br><br>
First thing I think is every child is different so CIO may work on one child but not the next...even in one family. So don't let CIO stories get you down. Just do what feels best for your child in your family.<br><br>
If your daughter being in your bed doesn't feel like it works then change that. It will be hard at first. She will have to learn to fall asleep alone. But you all can do it if you decide it is what is needed.<br><br>
I personally don't feel that natural parenting and discipline are contrary concepts. I think that being a natural mother means preparing my children to be adults. I don't want my children needing other bodies in the bed to be able to fall asleep. I would hate for them to bring people to their beds only to fill a need for a body in the bed you know? I think we all need to learn to sleep alone. But when we learn that is individual. My first son was always fine sleeping alone and is a star sleeper. We all slept better (him and us) when he was alone. My younger son not so much.<br><br>
As to your husband and his ideas regarding parenting. I think his are just as valid as yours. He is their dad after all and his instincts are just as important as Mom's. I tell my DH that as the household manager he has to listen to my management expertise- but between you and me in the end he is dad too and though he does things I would never do...I let him. I figure that almost every kid grew up with moms and dad's who were a bit different. We don't have to be on the same page on everything.<br><br>
I try to get on the same page on most things but that means I have to listen to him discuss and compromise. Dad's are often the ones to lay down the law and we mom's often fight it...I know my DH has filled that role here. And while I fought it I have come to see on several occasions that he was right- my son was old enough to learn to do XYZ and he CAN live without his toys all over the house. Maybe your DH is right?<br><br>
I had to tell my DH no PERIOD to one thing- spanking. I couldn't stand it because when he did it then my son got more violent with everyone and would "spank" the dog. But I let DH do it until I could make a real case for why it wasn't OK drawing on our life (it didn't help with ods' behavior and lead to more bad behavior). I tried to be open that maybe my DH had as much and as good instinct as I do. He was a lot more open to listening to me when I could show that no only was his discipline not working but it was creating problems. I let him try so he could listen to me.<br><br>
Our children do need to function someday in a world with rules and those rules start here at home. There are things they will need to be able to do- for example follow directions that are given without explanation (because I said so).<br><br>
I think that you should open your heart to your DH and listen to what he is saying...try to be open to the instincts he is bringing. I mean you picked him for a reason right?<br><br>
Parenting is not ridged. Each day I learn and try something new. Adjust course if you try something and it doesn't work. When I feel like it is all bad I think to myself will anyone know that this happened when he is 30...if I am certain that my choice won't "show" on my boy when he grows up to be a 30 year old man then I try not to sweat it.
 

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Well you dont have to do CIO to help a toddler spend the whole night in their own bed. My twins sleep in their beds in their own room. But the difference is you have to GET UP and go get them back down before going back to sleep.<br>
If your dh wants dd out of your bed, then he can either go to her and parent her back to sleep and put her back in her own bed. Or if you are nursing at night he can bring her back to bed when she is done.<br>
If he wants to change the cosleeping arrangment, then he can take the steps necessary to do it kindly.<br><br>
Is there any way he coudl find an API playgroup in your area? He might have made friendships in his playgroup and I wouldnt suggest abandoning them but it couldnt hurt to meet some other parents who are more AP oriented. I found my playgroup through a "find a group" link on the API website. So it is pretty easy because all my mom friends are AP too. And when we give advice, it usually is pretty child friendly and kind. Although we still vary quite a bit in our approaches.<br><br>
I would suggest that if he is the SAHD then it is probably extremely important to him to have a lot of input. (I would be hopping mad if my DH came home from work and said "I think you should do things this way") My dh considers me to be the primary expert because I spend the most time with the children.<br>
How interested is he on reading up on parenting topics? Does he do any reading or chatting on the Internet? If you help guide him to some good sources of information he might just come to the same conclusions you have after doing the "research" himself.<br><br>
Good luck<br>
Joline
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for all the responses!<br><br>
I agree with Mommymine that I should listen to DH on parenting and I *DO* listen on many things. However he keeps defaulting to me on many things, for example, what to feed when. I'm the one that is teaching him how to feed her things other than jar food. I was the one that discovered babywearing and pushed for us to use carriers (he loved them once he agreed to try them).<br><br>
I have suggested in the past that he look at websites for SAHD and about parenting. But he says that he's too busy with her in the day and at night he's got parent burnout so the last thing he wants to do is look/ read about parenting stuff.<br><br>
I have also suggested that he help with helping to teach her to sleep in her crib. Again he says he's burnt out at night so that all defaults to me. And I have to go to work so I can't stay up all night with her. She's no dummy, even in deep sleep she can tell I'm trying to get her in the crib and she'll wake up immediately. I think I'd need a whole week (or more) of just working on the sleep thing with her. I have Thanksgiving week off, maybe I'll try it then...<br><br>
Joline, thanks for the perspective suggestion about impact of our parenting when they're all grown up... I shouldn't sweat it as much as I do I guess.
 

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Mommymine deserves the credit for that!<br>
And it is great advice. I think I will keep it in mind myself.
 

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Somewhere around 16-18 months, we began to transition my DS from our bed, to a toddler bed (in our room). I am 5'4", and I could lay next to him, nurse, etc., while he fell asleep, then exit to my own bed. If he woke, I could repeat laying next to him. Over time, I began to exit before he was asleep. Now, on all but very rare occasions, he sleeps on his own, but he always knows he can call me over to snuggle. (Note, we reinforced the toddler bed by building a wooden 'box' that acts as a support in the area where I lay - the box is approx 8" x 8"x 42")
 

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My husband is also a SAHD. We have a son that is 13mos. We have his room child-proofed and setup a twin bed on the floor with a bed rail. My son has always hated the crib. When we tried the mattress on the floor he started to sleep a couple of hours by himself. I sleep the first couple of hours with my husband and the rest of the night with my son. We don't all cosleep together because my husband needs that time to physically recharge...he gets touched out through the day.<br>
When it comes to decisions, I try and let him make the daytime decisions. I did let him know that there will be no CIO and spankings. When he yells or says something that I do not agree with I let him know that he is a great father but there are alternatives.
 

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I have had some of the very same arguments with my DH. The discipline, the co-sleeping, all of it. As far as the co-sleeping goes: As of last week, we are now flying solo in bed. Our DDs are still very young (15 mos & 27 mos), but they now share a full-sized mattress in the room right next to us. Granted, they usually end up in our bed at some point, but for all intents and purposes.... I miss the girls in bed, but I was sick of arguing my point. And I feel that I got my way for the better part. They are happy and don't seem the least bit traumatized by the change. Since your DC doesn't yet have a sibling to share with, how about a mattress on the floor next to your bed? As far as the discipline goes, I refuse to budge. My DH would never hit our children, but he is also a "yeller". I won't tolerate that. Anytime he even starts to look upset, I send him out to the garage to yell. By himself. And he ends up feeling like a jackass. He once said: "It's embarassing to deal with my anger the same way a 2 yo does. I should have picked up a better method somewhere along the way." Persistence has paid off in this case. Not to mention the fact that you can't argue with results. If I had a nickel for every time someone has commented on how well-behaved our children are....<br>
Sorry for the rant, just commiserating and tossing in my 2 cents.
 

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My dh and I are having similar problems, but our ds is only 10 mos. We don't have the CIO issue because we have friends who use that method. When we are over at their house, our hearts break for listening to their little one.<br><br>
On the discipline side of things, dh and I are almost polar opposites. While we only have one small child, we are around our 2yo. niece a lot. I abhore the way dh "disciplines" her. He is very stern with her and believes that since she does things "on purpose", i.e. pushing ds, she needs to be yelled at to stop. Usually it's pretty awful to be around him and dn at the same time.<br><br>
Dh has been coming around more and more though. I've been reading "Unconditional Parenting" by Alfie Kohn when it comes to discipline. I try to keep a running dialogue with dh about what I read in it.<br><br>
We've also been attending API meetings together. I think it really helps him to see that there are lots of other parents (moms <i>and</i> dads) out there who use gentle discipline, don't CIO, and co-sleep. And I definitely think you two should look into an API playgroup. It's so nice to be around like-minded parents in a relaxed setting.
 
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