Why I Choose to Co-sleep
One of the things that new parents need to consider when they welcome their new baby is whether to put them in a crib or co-sleep. Co-sleeping, or having your child with you in your bed, has been around since time immemorial. Let’s listen to some mommies share why co-sleeping is the most natural choice for them. 1. It's a most practical choice. Bridget Ng-Ting, mom of Ira and Iya, says it was a practical decision since she prefers to be the primary caregiver of her children. “It was the most organic thing for us. You get to witness a lot of firsts that way! As long as my spouse shares the same sentiment about it (he does!), I don’t have to hurry to wean them. They do have their own room where all their things are. They have their own beds usually for afternoon naps, and they know that they have their own space to be responsible for even though they sleep in our room.”
2. It makes breastfeeding easier. Co-sleeping truly supports breastfeeding, says Bridget. Coykee Musni, mother to Amara, agrees. “Preparing for birth, and not knowing any better, I bought the works: an expensive crib, hypoallergenic mattress, quilts, and all. A little over an hour after giving birth via C-section, I couldn't feel the lower half of my body, and feeling like a whale squeezed on a stretcher in the recovery area, the head nurse brought in Amara from her tests, put her in my arms, latched her on, and declared, 'Don't worry, you won’t drop her.' I didn't. Rooming-in, our awesome pedia Mianne Sylvestre told us to return the plastic crib to the nursery since we didn't need it. She told me not to worry because I won't let baby fall off the hospital bed and I wouldn't roll on her or suffocate her. She taught me how to breastfeed baby and even roll over from left to right side without getting up, so baby can feed on both breasts at night with minimal effort from me, baby, and Daddy Pipo. I learned fast and it was easy. When we got home, I got a king sized mattress to replace our double sofabed. We've been co-sleeping ever since.”
3. It is safe and provides security. Meng Morales says, “We co-slept until Issen was three and Kobe was two. Apart from breastfeeding, we also wanted to make the kids feel secure at night. They wake up for various reasons and they'd whimper or cry. I wanted to make sure that they know I'm there for them whenever they need me. Now that they have their own room, whenever they have a bad dream or wake up for some reason at night, they just go to our room and wake me up. I then put them back to sleep in their room after I find out why they woke up.”
Bridget affirms, “I always have been uncomfortable imagining how they’d wake up and their first thought is “Where's mommy? or Where's daddy?” I just don’t want them to feel alone or neglected when they wake up disoriented and we’re not around. I also need to assist them especially during potty training period or if they're starting to get sick. It’s easy to monitor them if they're running a fever or if they are coughing throughout the night.”
4. It builds the parent-child relationship. Coykee treasures co-sleeping with Amara as it reminds her of her own childhood. “Story time and family cuddle time just before she conks out are always the day's highlights. I am also a product of co-sleeping. Among my fondest memories of my late mom are those with no words. Just a feeling of pure loft, security, and peace, of the whole family sleeping together on a big Persian carpet in our basement, and just sleeping beside her, feeling her beside me, and even as an adult while she was undergoing chemotherapy, of me hugging her from behind, and she getting my hand and holding it over her chest. If something like that is the only memory I can pass on to my child, I think she'll be fine.”
Bridget adds, “I wouldn’t miss any of the talks we have before sleeping! They get to share with you what their innermost thoughts, their prayers, their feelings and hopes.”
For these moms, co-sleeping is the equivalent of nurturing with love, peace, security, and comfort. They all agree that until their children are ready to completely move to their own beds, they will always be welcome for quality family cuddle time together.