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Thread: Going Back to Work, Bed Sharing not for me?

  1. #1

    Question Going Back to Work, Bed Sharing not for me?

    Hi all, I'm just going to explain my situation and looking for thoughts/advice/etc.

    I'm going back to work full time on January 3rd. My new employer knows I'll be pumping during the day. I have been able to pump pretty efficiently so I'm not necessarily worried about being able to pump enough at first.

    Right now I'm mostly bed sharing with my son. Usually I'll lay him in his crib (in my room) at the start of the night, if he'll have it. Then pull him in to bed with me after he wakes up. He nurses at night every 2-3 hours. Sometimes he sleeps in his rocking chair seat...thing. We've been trying different things.

    I have to be honest I'm not crazy about bedsharing. There's not much room in the bed between the 3 of us. I worry about him either rolling off the bed (when he does start rolling back to tummy), or my bf not being aware of him and rolling over on him in his sleep. He also sometimes thrashes around kicking and punching me which is mildly annoying but usually solved by a good burp. However, there's also the fact that he will fall asleep nursing and I Cannot roll him onto his back or he will wake up, so he ends up sleeping pressed up against me on his side. Even though we've been doing this for a few weeks now, I feel like it's unsafe.

    I'm also just mildly annoyed that I cannot sleep on my stomach like I want to and tired of having my boobs out all night. Just being honest.

    I think I should continue to bed share when I go back to work because I'm worried that If I don't nurse enough at home my supply will drop too much, or it will put an early end to our breastfeeding. Of course there's also the sleep factor. I do get slightly more sleep when we bad share. TBH, it doesn't feel like that much more sleep.

    My bf mentioned wanting him to stay in bed with us because he misses him during the day.

    I really want him to sleep in his own bed at some point truly hopefully before the year mark.

    Is there any actual good way to get an infant used to sleeping in his crib? Maybe this would be more appropriate for the sleep section of the forum?

    Should note he is 14 weeks old.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    24,912

    Default Re: Going Back to Work, Bed Sharing not for me?

    Any chance of getting yourself a larger bed, or finding some other creative sleep set-up? Like a co-sleeping sidecar crib? Or having dad move to a futon in the floor so that he shares a room but not the same sleep surface?

    There is no such thing, in my experience, as a "good" way to get a baby used to sleeping in his crib. You're highly likely to experience some crying because babies instinctively know that being close to mom means being safe, warm, and fed, and being in a crib means the opposite. You can try making the crib smell like you by putting a used pajama top or something in the crib, and you can try warming the crib before putting the baby in, and you can try transferring baby only when he is deeply asleep, and you can try keeping a hand on the baby for several minutes after transferring him to the crib and silently sneaking away, and all these things might work, or your baby might wake up the moment you put him down!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,386

    Default Re: Going Back to Work, Bed Sharing not for me?

    If crib is your answer, I would suggest trying a crib in your room, as close to where you sleep as possible. Your scent and sounds are soothing and this may ease the transition. Try putting a blanket or shirt with your scent on it with baby. Also, baby is closer to you if baby needs soothing. Also I think the safety recommendation is baby in same room as mom for a year or at least 6 months? Also try nursing baby very much to sleep before putting baby down.

    I agree with mommal about bedsharing- if you can get a larger bed or some other set up that gives everyone more room makes a tremendous difference. No need for anything fancy. Mommals ideas sound good, or maybe get a twin bed for your bf to sleep in beside you and baby? Eventually your child will need a bed of their own, so you can get that now instead of later and make use of it.

    As far as safety, if baby is sleeping on the other side of you, (rather than between you and your bf) have you considered a bedrail? I used a mesh bedrail that attaches to the mattress with all my babies and this gave me great peace of mind. For that and other concerns, The book Sweet Sleep covers the facts about bedsharing safety very well, including the possible safety issues of other people (aside mom) sleeping beside baby. It is pretty fascinating what is and what is not a risk.

    I think things like what position you can sleep in and rolling baby onto back without waking baby etc. are things you figure out over time, it is kind of a matter of finesse. But a baby snuggled into his unimpaired breastfeeding mother is not really in danger. A baby who cannot roll over being laid on their tummy is what puts a baby at risk of SIDS- Interestingly, this position that we now know increases risk was exactly how "experts" told mothers to put their babies to sleep for decades, surely increasing incidences of SIDS.

    SIDS risk is also increased by several other things that may or may not apply to your lifestyle or your baby. Again Sweet Sleep explains the realities of SIDS risk and it is very different than what you might have heard. Whether a parent bedshares or not, IMO this is information that can help every parent make the safest choices for their babies.

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