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For those of you who cosleep with two or more children....how do you handle bedtime? esp. with a baby.....my dh works nights and i'm wondering how i will still be able to lay with my ds until he falls asleep and nurse a baby to sleep. love to hear your experiences.....
 

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I am fortunate to have dh home at night, but for naps, this is what I do----let ds watch a cartoon, nurse dd to sleep, put her in the bouncy seat in the bathroom (fan on), go lay down with ds til he falls asleep, by then dd will wake, I'll nurse her again, put her back down, and maybe have some time to myself. Or else spend the rest of the afternoon holding her<br><br>
The few times I have been alone at night, I basically have done the same thing, once ds is asleep, I'd retrieve the baby and we'd all sleep together. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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it is never easy for us, and when they finally fall asleep if we are not already knocked out, i wish i wasn't pregnant and broke because I would love a glass of wine or good beer.<br><br>
seriously, though....it is bad.<br><br>
when i was pregnant with ds3 we got a tv (almost a decade tv free before that), and I would nurse ds2 to sleep and have ds1 face the wall while i watched something inane until i passed out, but there were two months where my dh was working and living in arizona and i was in chicago pregnant as possible.<br><br>
now we usually do it together. all the routine stuff and sometimes a lot of lay down or you'll wake your brother, if you keep this up you'll have to sleep in the other room, kids sleeping on the end of the bed, books on tape, bribes, i don't know.<br><br>
most nights ds1 (age 6) is in his room and calls out to us for two or three hours before falling asleep listening to the lion witch and the wardrobe on cd.<br><br>
ds2 sleeps in our room (but goes in there 1-2 hours before us and listens to some annoying snoopy in the kitchen cd until he calms down)<br><br>
no tv in our rooms or theirs of course, but we used to have to wait until ds2 was watching leno or a cooking show for him to settle down and we'd carry him sleeping from the living room.<br><br><br>
ds3 will either nurse to sleep or fall asleep in dad's arms and then nestle between us. he has to be run around our apartment though before settling. you can't sit and hold him unless he's into a marathon nursing session.<br><br>
we do all the routine bath, brushing, books, before this time....<br><br>
they NEVER would all fall asleep together at the same time in the same room. one will ALWAYS cry for water, ask a question, jump out of bed and rouse the other who is almost asleep.<br><br>
we still end up with ds3 in between us and ds2 nestled at the foot of our very crowded queen bed.<br><br>
we once slept in a full sized bed all five of us for three weeks at my sister's apartment....crazy<br><br>
i know my stories aren't comforting, and they make me look like a bad mother, but they're honest.....<br><br>
good luck.<br><br>
i'll look for tips too.
 

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Once our babies arrived, we had to change our bedtime routine with dd#1 (she's 3). Before, we'd do bath, teeth, jammies, stories, and then I'd lie with her until she fell asleep. After the babies arrived, that became impossible as they would both want to nurse at that time <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> So, if dh was home, he'd do the whole routine. If he wasn't, I'd do it as best I could with the babies in a sling when they were little or playing on the floor or the bed. DD#1 also started to fall asleep on her own. It started by necessity when dh was out and the babies were crying and dd#1 couldn't fall asleep and I'd be running around trying to calm them down and trying to get dd#1 to sleep and it became a bit of a disaster. So, a few times, during all this running around, dd#1 would just fall asleep! Now she does it willingly most nights <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Liam was born when Emily was 21 months old. She was/is still nursing, and we were/are (sort of) still co-sleeping, but she had been sleeping all night since she was 15 months. I was/still am nursing her down for *most* but not all naps.<br><br>
I know everyone says make the changes before the new baby comes, but we decided NOT to, because I was concerned that if it worked and she regressed, we'd just have to do it again anyway, and be more frustrated at the regression than if we just go-with-the-flow. (That was just what worked for us, no criticism of others)<br><br>
Now what we do for naps (if it's just me -- a lot of times DH and I each take a kid if he's home) -- I usually nurse the baby while I distract Emily by singing or reading to her. Then give the baby his passy, and lay him beside us, while I nurse/cuddle her to sleep (she usually only nurses 5-10 minutes, and if she's not asleep by then, we cuddle. Then I can nurse the baby again, either to sleep and leave him there with her, or I can take him out and lay him somewhere else.<br><br>
So, #1, I'm saying I think it's totally possible to keep laying down with the toddler if your 2nd is laid back about it, especially if you can get her to take a passy. I know some people think passys are bad while BF (I did with Emmy) but it really helps with the 2 kid nap process, and we haven't had any nipple confusion, thank goodness.<br><br>
On to #2, your new one may wake up the toddler, but probably only for a few nights til the baby noises become normal. If you're co-sleeping/nursing, the baby probably won't really *cry* much - mine doesn't, but he gets restless and grunts a lot.<br><br>
I discovered early on that in those first few weeks of night-time diaper changes, it was easier to be in another room. The first night we were home from the hospital, we all slept in the same (king) bed, and the baby woke the toddler so DH quieted the toddler, and the baby and I exited to a queen in the guest room. I kept wanting to try it again, but have been too afraid that would happen again and too sleep-deprived to risk it!<br><br>
We stayed with that plan til the baby was 5 weeks old (I nursed the toddler to sleep in their bed, then DH joined her when he was ready to go to bed. She had been sleeping through the night, not waking to nurse, since I was 3 months pregnant, her own doing, very nice<br><br>
Now we're visiting the in-laws for a month so we have a queen bed and a queen mattress on the floor. Still me&baby, DH&toddler, but I SO miss sleeping with and snuggling my DD! In fact, last night we squeezed all 4 of us into one queen 'cause I just couldn't stand for us to be separate. Worked amazingly well - all slept great!<br><br>
As soon as we get back home, we're buying a twin to put next to our bed, complete with new Dora the Explorer sheets, for DD. She already LOVES her Dora pillowcase, which I gave her before the baby was born, so I'm hoping she'll be excited about her new bed when she sees the sheets. I'm planning to keep it right next to our bed for as long as she needs, but hoping that eventually we can move it across the room, and later, to her room (maybe when both kids are old enough to sleep together or something?) That way, I can put the baby (who won't be a newborn anymore, but 3 months old) between DH and I, and still snuggle the toddler who is next to us in her own bed.<br><br>
Be prepared for the toddler to wake some at night (sort of a regression) at first. That was why I didn't make big changes before he came, thinking she might associate not sleeping with us with her baby brother and resent it. Yours might not, they don't all, but we did have a couple of weeks of it. I'm glad we're still co-sleeping, since it makes getting the toddler back to bed much easier<br><br>
Sorry it was long; it was not exactly what I expected, but what ended up working for our family. What I tried to say was, you may just have to experiment to see what works for you, and -- good luck!
 
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