Accidental Parenting, Co -Sleeping
Accidental parenting is a term I first heard when I was expecting Eilidh. It was from a pregnancy book called ‘The baby whisperer’ by Tracey Hogg. Back then, being a teen about to become a mum it was the only insight I had into what parenting would be like. I’m sure Instagram was a thing back then too but not the supportive, social network it is now.
One of Tracey’s favourite phrases is "Start as you mean to go on." You've probably been in a rough situation with your child where you were willing to do anything to fix the problem. Well, often this "anything" turns into a not so good habit down the road. Sure you may not care too much about this habit at first, but 4 months down the road you may find yourself going crazy with this habit.
Lol at four months- its been nearly four years for us.
When you accidentally co-sleep
Co sleeping is something I’ve never really had a strong opinion on.
I’ve found over the years of motherhood I’m more of a ‘do whatever gives you rest’ kinda mum.
So when Oscar (and occasionally the girls) come wandering into our bed during the night I’m certainly not going to be the one to get out of bed to take them back through to theirs.
A little background:
Oscar comes through to our bed every single night and has done since he was just over a year old. When he first started I was pregnant with Matilda and absolutely exhausted. So I let it happen. To be honest I enjoyed the cuddles and at this point I was very much guilt ridden that my baby boy was soon to become a big brother.
We would deal with it once the baby was here.
Matilda came along and Oscar continued to come in beside us. We didn’t stop it because newborn tiredness and we didn’t want him to wake her. He would come in and just fall sound asleep. Matilda was a fab sleeper and was in the cot next to my side.
We would deal with it when Matilda was in her own room.
Matilda moved to her own room and I decided I was too lonely, poor G (I craved little people cuddles) to stop Oscar from coming in!
So now, we are a good few years down the line (Oscar is five in June) and still he, without fail is in beside me from around 1130pm every single night.
Yes so as I said, accidental co-sleeping.
When we settle Oscar into his own bed at bedtime (around 730pm) we’ll chat to him and ask ‘will you stay in your own bed tonight, like a big boy?’
Oscar has the most heart melting responses
‘My body just has so many cuddles and I want to give mummy all of my cuddles’
‘I just love giving mummy all my sneaky cuddles’
He has his very own definite space in our bed and climbs into it without hesitation. Within two minutes of a cuddle he is sound asleep again.
We’re now at the point of he’s-too-big to have in our bed for us all to comfortably sleep. Don’t get me wrong, there is space. We invested in a super king when I was expecting Matilda for situations like this very one.
Now on top of Oscar coming in Matilda wakes wanting to come in too. She’s a nightmare. She’s that toddler you see in the memes with legs kicking your sides or with her toes in your face. She’s wriggly, hot and doesn’t want to be touched by you. (If you attempt to cuddle Matilda while she sleeps you will be shouted at)
Then in walks Eilidh with a sore tummy, or is scared or just wants to be in the ‘family bed’ oh that’s right. Not mum and dads bed anymore.
Of course the bed can’t hold us all so at least a few nights a week G will be kicked out his own bed to find somewhere else to rest his weary head.
It’s all gotten a bit much. It’s all a bit accidental and we’re all too tired to deal with the problem.
So any advice??
An exhausted, just want to starfish in my own bed, mama