My husband, 18-month-old daughter, and myself have all been sharing our queen-sized bed since our daughter was born. I’m now eight months pregnant with our second child, and we’re not exactly sure what to do — should we transition our older daughter into a bed in our room? Buy a larger bed? Put the new baby in a co-sleeper?
When it comes down to it, I’m wondering how other families have successfully shared a bed with two children — it seems unfair to put our older daughter in a bed on her own so that the younger one can sleep with us. How did your family manage to co-sleep with two kids? — Holly
My first child was two years, seven months when I had my second. We were bedsharing throughout pregnancy and as soon as I came home with the new baby we resumed. We had a queen bed with a sidecar crib for “overspill” and Daddy on the left, toddler in the middle, Momma and new baby on the right with the sidecar. But after three months of toddler feet in my back while nursing a newborn, and being the cheese in the baby sandwich, we had to stop.
My infant slept through the night, but we would not because my toddler would wake up the whole house every night around 4 AM when she needed to pee. She doesn’t just wake up and say “I need to pee.” She flails all appendages and whimpers and whines until everyone else is awake too. Going by herself isn’t an option. But our house wasn’t set up for her to have our own room, so we strategized.
First, we did away with the sidecar and queen bed and bought a ginormous king-sized bed. It’s fantastic but I was still waking up with feet in my face. So we took the crib mattress, put it at the foot of our bed on the floor. We took kiddo to Target, had her pick out her own bedding and put her in her own bed. She liked it but still liked our bed more, so we told her if she stayed in her bed every night for two weeks straight she could have a special reward. At the end of two weeks, she got her reward and the habit of sleeping in her own bed was formed. She is still in our room, still technically “co-sleeping” and still safe and secure — but there’s no more feet in my face. She still needs to get up to pee once a night but it’s less of a disturbance. She can still come to our bed if she has a scary dream.
That said we are currently shopping for a new home that will allow her to have her own room, but only if it’s right next to ours.