People give me the look when I tell them that I let my son sleep in my bed, but actually, a lot more people co-sleep with their kids than they let on. According to the CDC, 68% of American babies enjoyed co-sleeping at least some of the time. And in many countries outside the United States, it is an unquestionable practice. So when did co-sleeping get a bad name?
Here are five reasons why I still let my son crawl into my bed at night.
1. Shelf life
Everyone always says once you let them into your bed, you’ll never get them out. I think more along the lines of—you only have so many days they can sleep in bed with you. We always say we want to live in the moment, but it’s hard. I find that the downtime I have with my son at the end of the day is when I realize that these days have a time limit.
I am a pretty hands-off parent, and my son is quite the independent adventurer. I like knowing that after a full day of running around, he loves to fall asleep with his mom right there. It’s an unspoken bond between us—we go about our day doing our own thing, but know that our evenings will always be spent together.
3. Family time
Between work, playtime, cooking dinner, traveling on the subways, and somehow keeping a clean path to walk through the apartment, who really has family time? Does anyone even sit down for dinner as a family any more? Heck, we don’t even have a table in our tiny apartment! So I like to think of co-sleeping as our quality time together.
4. He still puts himself to sleep
My son still sleeps on his own (and falls immediately asleep) for his naps, and when I put him down at night. Many may think I am spoiling him, and that he doesn’t know how to put himself to sleep, but he has his routine and puts himself to sleep every time. I say it’s time for bed, he follows me to the bedroom, crawls into the bed, we give hugs and kisses goodnight, and I turn off the light and shut the door while he is still wide awake.
5. Waking up in the morning as a family is the best feeling in the world
There is just something to be said about waking up in the morning to a rustling of sheets by tiny feet and arms. Cuddles and big toddler grins in your face will always be a better way to wake up than to cries from a bedroom down the hall.
Do you co-sleep? Are you willing to admit it to the world? Share below why or why not!
Author: Stephanie Barnhart
Stephanie Barnhart is Author/Founder of Footballfoodandmotherhood.com, New York Editor for Mommy Nearest Magazine, and Founder/Social Media Strategist of SocialmindedMediaGroup.com. Stephanie is also a speaker of best online practices for small business and soloprenurs, as well as an educator to parents on social media monitoring. She has also been seen in the New York Times, PARENTGUIDE News, NY Metro Parent, ABC News, and been a contributing author on various websites.