Rebecca Eckler is one of Canada's most talked about newspaper columnists, the author of Knocked Up: Confessions of a Hip Mother to Be, which has been translated into nine languages. Also the author of the bestsellers, Wiped!, Toddlers Gone Wild, and Rotten Apple, the first in a YA series. Random thoughts on life in the competitive world of modern mommyhood. Blog will be loved by trendy mothers who still feel, or often feel, that the most important word in "mommee" is ME!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Tell me your secrets....

I'm going to ask you all a personal question, so feel free to respond anonomously...

I don't know, maybe it was about a year ago, but I read this article, I think in the New York Times, about how many husbands and wives do not sleep together in the same room. It was like some big hidden secret happening all over America.

I thought it was pretty fascinating, because I think the number was extremely high. It turns out that all these couples just got a better night sleep if they didn't sleep in the same room as their partners.

Now, I'm not saying their sex lives suffer because of this (You can always get laid and then move rooms, right?)

I just thought it was pretty interesting how many married couple's didn't actually sleep in the same bed, or the same room.

As a very light sleeper, I can totally relate.

But I'm not talking about husbands and wives not sleeping together, because one is a light sleeper and the other snores or gets out of bed to go to the washroom five hundred times a night.

It's just that, for the past couple weeks, I've been sleeping with The Dictator, in her bed, in her room.

So now I'm wondering how many mother's actually sleep with their children, as opposed to their husbands.

I know why I do it. Well, there are a couple reasons.

First, I'm a working mother. So any time I can get with The Dictator, even if she's asleep, I'll take it.

Second, after I put her to bed, I honestly start missing her about 15 minutes later.

Third, I love when I sneak into her bed at midnight and say, 'I love you,' and give her a kiss on the cheek, and she says in her sleepy voice, "I love you too Mommy. Give me huggies."

So I've become addicted to sleeping with her. I know it has to stop. I know I have to move back into the marital bed soon.

But, tell me, do you love sleeping with your toddlers or babies? Please tell me, I'm not the only one...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is so timely because I never thought that someone would not want to sleep with their partner. My little one is 11 months and I've already bought her twin bed so that I can even just sleep in her room with her. I am still breastfeeding and love when she wakes up in the night as I look forward to being with her. Even falling asleep in the chair with her at night is good-except for the neck kinks.

The dad is a very light sleeper and seems to need so much more sleep...he has a hard time with her getting up in the night-even though I am the one who gets up with the baby. Because he was a light sleeper we could never have baby sleep in bed with us. She slept in crib since coming home from hospital, except for the nights he was away on business where I would sneak her in with me. There is nothing like a cuddle from the bebe...

1:07 PM

Anonymous Sarah said...

You're not the only one!! Before Regan was born I was totally against sleeping with your kids (typical opinionated non-parent!!) but not 3 hours after she was born I had her out of the hospital bassinet and in bed with me. She's warm, and soft, and she smells better than my husband. I just love how she snuggles her little bum back against me, and holds my hand to fall asleep and whispers "Mommy I want to sleep in your arms". She just turned 3, and most nights she sleeps by herself, but if she's sick, or scared, or my husband is hogging the blankets, I'm more than happy moving into her double bed...If anyone out there is thinking of moving their babies from the crib to a big bed, definitely get a double or queen if you've got the space! So, maybe sleeping with her every night is a mistake, but they get so big so fast and one day she won't want let you sleep with her - I say enjoy every second.

1:20 PM

Blogger Laural Dawn said...

I cuddle with my toddler all the time. Sadly, we almost go to bed at the same time, and if he can't sleep and I'm tired, I just hop into bed and we have "cuddles". The rule is that after a couple of minutes of chatting we close our eyes. Then my husband carries him to bed around midnight.
I don't sleep in his bed because it's a toddler bed. It's too small.

1:27 PM

Anonymous sskellington said...

I know it's frowned upon to sleep with your babies but I have 3 girls and did it with each one until they wanted their own bed.

There will come a time when they don't want you around, so enjoy them while they let you.

1:55 PM

Anonymous Katie said...

I lay down in my almost 3 year olds twin bed with him every night to help him fall asleep and frankly, i feel sorry for the parents that put their toddlers down and then leave the room! At the end of the day it is the perfect way to reconnect with him and to get some much need smooches and hugs. I know that I am going to blink and he will be eight and won't want me near him so I am stealing every darn moment that I can now.

1:56 PM

Anonymous ali said...

i cannot. under any circumstances. sleep with any of my children. they are all way too squirmy. and never. stop. moving. the entire night! drives me batty.

2:23 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My kids never liked sleeping in our bed, even as infants they seemed to be more content in their own bedrooms with the door shut and the lights off.
Each morning my husband would bring them into bed to nurse and snuggle. The nursing is a thing of the past now but the morning snuggle is the way we start our day everyday.
So please don't feel badly for me that I put my kids to bed and leave the room. I'm a stay at home Mom and my kids and I luckily get to spend everyday together, there's no need to seek out time to reconnect, smooch or hug, we do that all the time.
I think it's wonderful that so many parents have commented that they too value "loving" their babes, it sure is something to cherish.

5:13 PM

Blogger Haley-O said...

Ditto to what Ali said. I can't sleep with my monkey because I get kicked in the throat, pounced on, my hair pulled, eyelashes pulled. You get the picture.... I sleep with the hubby.

5:23 PM

Blogger Amanda said...

I used to LOVE sleeping with my daughter, but now (she is 19 months), I am too squished and get stuck in one position unable to move and it isn't as comfortable anymore. I do like it though, for sure. The whole issue with her is that once you start, the habit is hard to break, so it's all or nothing I find.
As far as sleeping in separate rooms from my hubby...if he's snoring, I'm gone! Otherwise, for sure we are in the same bed. Once my daughter moves into her big girl room, I won't have the freedom of another bed in another room though and couches just don't work for step at a time, I guess!

6:25 PM

Blogger Jen said...

I love snuggling up with Abby too. She slept with us until she was about 3 or 4 months old. Sometimes at night I will sneak in her room and cuddle her for a bit, or sneak her into our bed for an hour but my husband carries her back to her own bed for the night.

I'm a stay at home mom and even I miss her after she's asleep for 15 minutes. But at night I NEED to sleep, and deeply.

Such a great feeling though!

10:19 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are not alone. I lie down beside my 3.7 year old daughter until she falls asleep. I often fall asleep with her, but will wake up an hour or two later and go to my own bed. But then daughter will "patter" into my room around 3 in the morning and kick daddy out of the bed so she can snuggle with me.

11:11 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My 24 month old still sleeps in bed with my husband and I. There is no better feeling in the world than waking up in the middle of the night and seeing the 2 people you love most sleeping. Enjoy the time!

10:48 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have never slept with my son in our bed. He is 2 years old and has always fallen asleep on his own in his crib. Last night I worked late, so I didn't get to see him. I climbed into his crib and cuddled him for 1/2 hour. I totally get it. The smell. The small hands. The deep breathes. The fidgeting. The bum in the air child's pose sleep position. I could not have in our bed every night - he wouldn't go to sleep and I wouldn't sleep. But I am a big fan of the crib cuddles and I think I'll get him a double bed so that I can keep it up. Good thing I am small.

10:33 AM

Anonymous MOTP - mother of the pants in the family said...

It is one of the best things! to sleep with your kid, and listen to their breathing get all rhythmic.

My daughter slept with me for the first year of her life, and my husband, because he's a light sleeper, slept in the living room! Now she's 4, and sleeps in a big girl bed, and both my husband and I love to give her cuddles and hugs in bed - she just usually says "go" when she's had enough!

11:48 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My oldest sleeps best alone in his own room...he's not quite 2. He loves to come into our bed, but almost never falls asleep there. He's spent a bit of time in his "big boy bed" with mummy or daddy, and the cuddles are wonderful.

We also have a baby - 7 weeks old. He spends most nights in bed with us...loves to be held, won't sleep alone very well. I can't wait until he's bigger and I can cuddle with him even more!

Sleeping with our babies is one of life's joys...they are young for such a short time!

6:35 PM

Blogger mad muthas said...

it's utterly delightful! and as a friend of mine said, 'what do i want with a big rough hairy man when i've got a gorgeous smooth cuddly little boy, whose breath smells sweet in the morning? i was very sad when my son stopped trotting through to our bed in the middle of the night (he was 8). all the broken nights were worth it!

2:05 PM

Anonymous Dawn said...

I remember reading an article a while back -- I'm not sure if it was in the Globe and Mail or a magazine -- about parents who sleep the same bed with their kids. One example I recall was an older kid, like in his/her teens and the parent was still sharing their bed. I just thought it was kind of interesting that this is so prevalent.

9:06 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I HATE sleeping with my kids (12 mos and almost 4 years old). The one-year-old wakes up (and wakes me up) about every hour or so. The 4-year-old is super-wiggly, and he kicks me and pokes me in the gut. When I kiss him goodnight and he asks me to lay down with him, I always do (and love to cuddle), but I usually wake up about 20 minutes later, or he pushes me out of bed (because I'm taking up too much space, I guess) and says, "Go 'way, Mommy."

I know lots of people who subscribe to the "family bed," and I don't take issue with it. It's just not for me!
Karen in San Diego

5:36 PM

Blogger petite gourmand said...

If I could fit in the crib I would...
I say enjoy.
before you know it she will want to sleep alone.
snuggle up and enjoy the extra cuddle time.

5:11 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My husband and I were recently staying at a Hilton Hotel with our 8 month old daughter. The Hilton is great since they provided a great travel crib, high chair and lovely blanket for my baby.

One afternoon after a great swim in the Hilton pool, I took my daughter up to the hotel room so that she could nap with me in their fantastic king-sized bed. (BTW, they now offer a 'Pillow Menu' so you can choose your favourite firmness level) My daughter and I used to snooze in bed together all of the time and I thought this would be another lovely mother/daughter moment.

WRONG! My 8 month old is a squirmy baby. She fell asleep and then immediately started rolling around. Her final position was laying diagonally across the middle of the bed with her leg up on a pillow. I'm pretty sure that I saw her smiling at me a doing a 'nah nah nah....'

haha. Great writing! Keep it up!

5:23 PM

Blogger hautemama said...

I think it's sweet..and if hubby's happy than s'all good.

10:00 PM

Anonymous scurvyann said...

I'm loving naptime with my 2 year old son. I really look forward to it - first snacktime, then we watch the "Upside Down SHow" on noggin, then we sack out on the floor together on mounds of pillows. Best part of the day!!!

11:16 AM


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