Can We Co-Sleep And Sleep Train?

– Written by JoAnna Inks 

happy family mother, father and  father child daughter in bed

I’m a mom, and so I totally get it!

We have this primal and almost uncontrollable impulse to be close to our babies.  It’s deeply rooted in our DNA!

I’m confident there are evolutionary defenses involved in this phenomenon, but to me, it feels like put LOVE.  I LOVE this tiny human so much that I want to have contact with him ALL the time, every day & every night.

Also, baby doesn’t seem to mind, and there’s some so special about sleeping right next to your baby, that it seems unnatural not to!

That’s exactly how I felt until my older son was six weeks old.  Then, I realized that this little guy hadn’t figured out the “sleeping etiquette” around sleeping with another person 😉 The constant fidgeting and poking me was kind of keeping me up ALL night.

And I was tired.  Like, sand in the eyes tired, like, tired that I’d never felt before in my entire 33 years of life.  Tired AF!

I realized that one of the ideas I had about becoming a mom just wasn’t working for me, and I needed a quick course correction.  I didn’t enjoy co-sleeping and needed a change.

I’m so not against co-sleeping.  I have plenty of friends who co-sleep and absolutely love it.  Some of them have multiple kids in bed with them. Awesome!

A huge fist bump to you if co-sleeping works for your family!  If you love it and you’re co-sleeping safely, go for it! I’m all for whatever works for each family.  We’re all different, and that’s okay.

Over the years, I’ve spoken to families who love co-sleeping but aren’t into being woken up so many times each night and they want to know if sleep training can help their little one to stop squirming or waking up 18 times a night to nurse.  For the record, your 20-month-old does not need to nurse at night…Like at all 😉 

I always feel like I don’t have a good answer for these parents.  I sympathize with them because who wouldn’t want to sleep next to their baby and not be woken up all through the night.  That would be amazing, no doubt.

Here’s the BUUUUUT…But, it’s not going to happen and here’s why.

Babies are wild sleepers!  They twist and turn throughout the night and often end up completely turned around in their beds.

Also, your baby thinks you’re pretty special.  If they wake up and see you, they get super excited.  They either want to nurse or play.

Why can’t sleep training help with this?

It’s not a sedative!  Sleep training is about teaching a baby the skills they need to get back to sleep on their own between sleep cycles every night.

Nothing we teach your baby can put them in stage 3 sleep and keep them there for 11 hours.  They’ll always sleep in cycles, and some part of that cycle is super light – hence the wake-up, nurse, play, whatever…

We see the most success with teaching baby independent sleep skills when they are in their own bed, in their own room, without any distractions.

We ALL sleep better alone.  If you have a partner that snores or one that wakes you in the night, you know what I mean.  Alone in a dark, cool cave would be perfect for optimal sleep 😉

Some people, including me, have a hard time giving up those snuggles in the “big bed”.  What I suggest to my clients, and this helped me as well, is to set aside 15-20 minutes in the morning, after your kiddos have slept 11-12 hours are well-rested and bring them into your bed.

Snuggle, play, sing songs, or whatever you want to do to keep that closeness and bond.

This solution won’t mess up their ability to sleep well at night and won’t keep you up in the night either.

If you’re one of those families that’s chosen to co-sleep and have now decided to reclaim your bedroom, your little one might have other ideas about that.

I often tell my clients that your kiddo isn’t suddenly going to sit up in your bed one night and tell you to put them in their own bed, in their own room.  It’s just NOT going to happen!

But, the good news is that every baby can learn to LOVE to sleep independently.

I’ve helped families undo YEARS of co-sleeping in a few short weeks, and I can help yours too!

Want to find out how?  Book a complimentary discovery call today.

Here’s to a well-rested family,

P.S.  The call is FREE.  Here’s the link 

Book A Call

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