A PSA for co-sleeping

Courtesy of the Italian La Leche League, I found out that two different Italian news outlets recently misinterpreted a study on baby sleep by the Istituto Superiore di Sanita’ (published in the journal Pediatrics), erroneously claiming that the study shows that co-sleeping disturbs babies’ sleep. In reality, the study makes no value judgments on co-sleeping and discusses the variety of influential factors, including environmental and genetic, involved in sleep disturbance. In other words, like most everything else, it depends on the individual baby. Talk about alarmisti.

Such preachy self-righteousness, not to mention misleading reporting, makes me so mad. To think of all the co-sleeping parents who panicked needlessly when they read these stupid articles.

I am proud to say that we co-sleep with Peanut, though we no longer do it on a regular basis. He slept in our bed with us until he was about 6 months old, at which point he just kind of naturally started sleeping in his own crib. But that crib is right beside us, which apparently is still considered co-sleeping. And once in a while we fall asleep together after nursing, usually in the morning. 

We always just followed what felt right for our baby and us. I’ll admit I was a little sad when Peanut left our bed. It is just so deliciously sweet to wake up to his lovely head within kissing proximity. But I also have really enjoyed having more space again to move around in. Andrea was a little unsure about the whole thing at first but recently said he misses sleeping next to him too.

Co-sleeping already gets a bad enough rap as it is without sensationalist articles like this. The parents I’ve talked to who admit to doing it seem almost embarrassed, like it’s some kind of dirty secret. I really don’t understand why. Plenty of studies have proven that co-sleeping is perfectly healthy, and even advantageous if you’re breastfeeding. As for your sex life, well, it just means getting a bit creative.