1. Parenting
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    3. Is it okay to co-sleep with your child?

    Behaviour

    Behaviour

    Is it okay to co-sleep with your child?

    There are enormous cultural differences between the west and the east when it comes to co-sleeping with your child. When is the right time to shift your little one to a separate bed? What are the benefits and risks of co-sleeping? Would be great to have opinions ... more

    Comments

    Priyasoma Nov 10 2017

    Priya

    1)They feel more loved & stay happy

    2)The kids will talk a lot while in bed and also have a good nights sleep

    3)They will def feel safe and secure .

    4) but its always good to make them sleep separately once in a while to drive out the fear of sleeping alone / fear of dark

    5) as kids grow older , the parents should be really careful of their adult talk and behavior.. They have to be cautious if they want their time .

    6) whether we co sleep or not , kids def outgrow fast and become more independent and confident

    I really believe that the kids who sleep with their parents are more disciplined , caring , lovable , confident , transparent.

    Once they become real big , say 10 plus , u can make them sleep alone . they will quickly adapt themselves.

    When they are sick , they def need us beside them , def mom if not both !!
    They sleep better actually in these situations

    Mohan Sep 26 2017

    Pretty useful inputs !! Looks more like leaving the choice to the kid.

    @ Arundathi - What's your view on this? There are few parenting aspects, where we say, do what would be good for the kid, rather than just accepting what the kid demands. Most of us feel it's better the child decides whether he/she wants to sleep with parents.

    Mohan Oct 10 2017

    @Mohan Yes Mohan. It is confusing - your decision or theirs. It's not really about which is right or wrong. Rather, I would say look what works for your family. Go with your gut feeling. Kids will ultimately outgrow their need to co-sleep with their parents. When? Difficult to say. Perhaps in advanced teens their need for privacy will break the habit. Work towards it rather than enforce it, bear up with the inconveniences till then, and hope for the best! For some, sleep-overs help them wean away from the habit.

    anjulan1981@gmail.com Oct 7 2017

    Well, as we all know, there is no specific age or time when parents have to stop co-sleeping with their children. Important thing to keep in mind is to consider the child's idea or priority. Few children are ready at a very younger age and few children might have some worries in sleeping alone. From a very age of the child it is good to have a bed time routine, may be stories or simple silly memory games or anything. Children who have such sleep routines usually go easy about the idea of sleeping separately.

    Mohan Oct 6 2017

    Cultures around the world have different views on parents co-sleeping with their children. While some endorse it, some dont. Both sides have their valid arguments. Read them to make up your mind.

    Devi Oct 4 2017

    The answer is very subjective. There is no strict age to do so, and not necessarily the chronological age of the kid matches the readiness for the independence. For example my elder daughter started to sleep alone at the age of the 10, but my younger one seeing the elder one wants to sleep along at the age of 7.It is purely cultural, if both the parents and kids are comfortable can go for it. No need to push or be anxious about it.

    Saakshath Vijay's Dad Sep 25 2017

    Very interesting discussion here on co-sleeping and important points have been touched upon. It is true that our ways are very different from the west, especially when it comes to issues such as co-sleeping. My son is 11 years old and in our case, the situation was slightly different. From the time he was four years old, he has had a room for himself, mainly because he used to sleep with this grandmother. But, just so he did not feel the anxiety of not sleeping with his parents, we have had a bedtime ritual since he was a toddler. We would read to him his favourite bedtime stories and talk to him till he was sleepy. We also told him that he was welcome to come and sleep in our bedroom, if he wished to. Now he is grown up, but still have the ritual of sitting with him at bedtime and chatting with him. Last year, he himself told us that he was comfortable sleeping alone in his bedroom,when his grandmother is not in town. That way the transition was smooth. @Sathiya Priya, I had the same fears like you did -- whether he would be comfortable or not? What if he gets up in the middle of the night and gets scared when he finds himself alone? But he seems to be fine. I think when children should sleep on their own, when they think they are ready for it. Nevertheless, I feel parents also need to gently tell them that we need our privacy.

    Mohan Sep 20 2017

    Yes, exactly. How do we make them understand without they getting emotional.

    Mohan Sep 21 2017

    @Mohan The tough part is when they get emotional about it, isn't it Mohan? And then it triggers off our own thoughts and emotions! Whew...where do we go from here? Both child and parents getting emotional is not a bad thing, after all we are talking about a strong attachment and bond. So it will be difficult when something she is so used to, is going to change. I think the first step is to just know and accept that there's nothing wrong with her emotions or yours.

    Mohan Sep 21 2017

    @Mohan What would be the right age to start this. Do you also suggest leaving to the kid to decide?

    Mohan Sep 22 2017

    @Mohan There is no fixed 'right time'. Every child is different so it works differently in each family. Kids don't like to be pushed. Whatever efforts you make, let them be stress and emotion free. Shifting down-time or family time to their room helps them associate the happy moments with their room.
    Sathia's post has some nice practical suggestions too.

    Mohan Sep 22 2017

    @Mohan Yes, sounds reasonable

    Sathiya Priya Sep 21 2017

    You shall co-sleep with the kids till a certain period as most of the kids at the young age feel unsecured to sleep alone. I feel it should be consultative decision as both the parent and child should be comfortable. In our house, we all have the perfect family time before we go for sleep only. We discuss certain important things like academic goal settings for the kids, planning for an outing etc., We make it a point to have a family dinner and have light conversations too but ultimate family time is only before sleep. We all share the funny things happened during the day and certain other information, read stories, play some memory games etc. It was quite hard for me to initially think of parting way for a separate room for my kids even when the children younger to my kids started sleeping alone in our extended family. But when the kids wanted their space we thought its the right time to make them sleep alone. They will sleep alone in their room but after our usual family time and fun. There are nights when I used to suddenly wake up, rush and check they are sleeping well. One such day when I went, my little one asked, Amma, what happened? Did you have a bad dream?. Smiled at myself and I replied, Nothing like that, simply. In fact, I was the one who was in tears when my elder one started for the preschool. She never cried for single day. Kids will get adjusted but they should get convinced for that.
    @ Mathari - I understand your feelings. I too initially used to peep into their rooms in the middle of the night to make sure they are feeling safe but they used to tease me and gradually we will get used to it. But earlier the better, once they are too old they take longer time. In my case younger never search for me unlike the older one.
    @ Mohan - First, they should feel that its their room and its made specially for them. Set up a reading corner, decorate with the artwork done by them etc. to have the sense of ownership for the place then we shall slowly tell them they can sleep in their own room. Maybe, initially parents can sleep with the kids in the room for a couple of nights

    Sathiya Priya Sep 22 2017

    @Sathiya Priya Good points Sathiya. It's turning out to be more subjective as we keep discussing about it :)

    Sathiya Priya Sep 22 2017

    @Sathiya Priya Good thoughts Sathiyapriya. I liked your recommendations for the parents to accompany the kids in their new room for a couple of days.

    Sathiya Priya Sep 22 2017

    @Sathiya Priya Sathia, thanks for sharing your experience. Very practical and useful. To add one more suggestion - sometimes it helps them to know that they can come over to your room whenever they feel afraid, worried and need comforting.

    Arundhati Swamy Sep 21 2017

    This is indeed a very interesting discussion. I also think that beneath the genuine reasons for wanting kids to sleep separately, is another common and important reason - the lack of privacy for parents to share, discuss important stuff, and definitely for romantic and physical intimacy. And its not easy for kids if they stumble upon parents sharing sexual intimacies. Neither is it easy for the embarrassed parents! Busy lifestyles today leave very little room for parents to bond and spend time together.

    Mathari Sep 20 2017

    My daughter is in 11th std now. She asked for her own room at her 9th std, though we are insisting to have her own room from 8th std. When the moment, she says she wants to have her own room, we found it hard to digest. We felt very sad as though she is moving miles apart. We arranged her a room, and she happily slept alone in her room. As a parent, the day she left us to the next room makes us feeling very bad. We went often looked at her room, to see she is fine. She is cool. Felt, the good days of non stop talking with her comes to end, she is finding her own space.

    Mathari Sep 20 2017

    @Mathari Earlier we do, better it would be I think. Otherwise, it may be hard to digest for parents at later stages.

    Mathari Sep 20 2017

    @Mathari Won't agree. My take is to leave it to the kid to decide.

    Meera Mathews Marrate Sep 20 2017

    We have broached the subject and my 7 year old gets all emotional. She says she'll feel sad if she wakes up alone in the middle of the night and find neither of us beside her. What can we say to make her understand and without making her feel left out?

    Mohan Sep 20 2017

    My daughter is 6 years now and we too have been thinking about it. Should we continue to make her sleep with us or to start thinking about the transition. She is very much comfortable sleeping next to us and doesn't even like us talking about the same. So we are quite confused on this aspect.

    Mohan Sep 20 2017

    @Mohan Interesting thoughts Mohan and Mathari. One of the best ways to ensure a smooth transition is to do it from time to time. An afternoon nap on a weekend can be in a separate room. You then get used to it. But, for the child to develop independent thinking, it is essential that co-sleeping gradually paves the way for a separate room