Lots of people have asked my thoughts on co-sleeping, so here goes:
I feel that for the first 3 months (aka the 4th trimester), baby still needs to feel safe, like they are a part of mama. The best way to do this is to spend lots of time cuddling, nursing, rocking, and sleeping together (or with a co-sleeper next to the bed). Your baby will feel very insecure and scared when he or she is not with you, because they are so new to the big, scary world. I encourage you to keep your baby close for the first few months. It is important.
After that, slowly, around 5 months, transition baby to the crib if you don’t want them to sleep in the same bed as you. You CANNOT spoil a new born. It isn’t possible. They operate solely on instinct and there’s nothing you can do to change that. They won’t get “spoiled” to you holding them, or feeding them, etc. It doesn’t work that way.
Some mothers fear their child will only want to sleep with them from now on, and they will never get their kid out of the marital bed. If that’s the case, don’t worry! 3 months will not effect their long term sleep habits.
A good rule of thumb that I’ve stuck to is recognizing that at first baby needs to be with mommy, THEN, as they become more comfortable in the world, they can be independent enough to sleep on their own. Only you know your child best, so make sure YOU feel comfortable with the transition before you try to move baby from bed to crib.
I feel co-sleeping is safe in most cases if :
- You are not taking any sleeping pills or downers
- You aren’t significantly overweight
- Your comforter is not pulled up to where it could cover the baby (I didn’t need covers as I was sweating bullets for the first couple months which I’m sure new moms can understand! So gross)
- Your bed is large enough for you, your partner, and the little one
I never had a problem co-sleeping with pearl because as a mother, you all know the second you hear one little squeak or whimper you jump wide awake. I never had any fear of not hearing her if something was wrong. Once again, though, YOU have to feel comfortable. If you aren’t, there is a great option for you. It’s called an Arm’s reach co-sleeper. Baby goes right next to bed for easy access at night.