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3 Reasons to Avoid Co-Sleeping

3 Reasons to Avoid Co-Sleeping

It’s a topic of great debate among parents and professionals and a question that Circle of Moms members debate time and time again: Is co-sleeping a good idea or bad idea?

Despite the fact that many mothers make a good case for co-sleeping, I never even considered it when my children were babies.

Many people, including Circle of Moms member Joy B., define co-sleeping as a child sleeping in the same room — but not necessarily the same bed — as her parents. So I guess I did technically co-sleep when my children were infants. But once they were too big for the bassinet in my room, that was the end of deliberate sleep-sharing.  

I was not up for “bed-sharing” or a “family bed,” which the Circle of Moms Family Bed Moms community defines as when moms share their beds with their kids (and enjoy it). There were three main reasons I chose not to share a bed with my children, reasons that many other Circle of Moms members echo when they’re discussing the issue.

1. Safety

Years before the American Academy of Pediatrics released findings that indicate bed-sharing can be dangerous under certain conditions, I worried about the safety of sharing a bed with a child.  Mom Brandi B. sums up my concern when she says “I am scared to actually sleep in the bed with my baby.”

Like Circle of Moms member Jamie D, I, too, worried about my son “falling off the bed [or] getting crushed or suffocated by me.” Even knowing what precautions to take around the type of bedding, the firmness of the mattress, and parental behavior didn’t quell my fears.


2. Sanctuary

Leaving safety concerns aside, my bed is my sanctuary. In a house filled with teenage angst, a pre-adolescent's toys, and a sticky toddler's messes, slipping into bed at the end of the day can be pure, unsticky, non angst-ridden bliss.

As Jamie points out, it’s my “me” time. Some may see it as selfish, but like Circle of Moms member “Lady Gillian” says, “I think parents should be allowed their own space.”

3. Sex

If the bed is that space, how do you have any intimacy in your relationship if you’re sharing your bed with your child? Co-sleeping Circle of Moms members say they have sex in the spare room, the couch or anywhere else they can manage it.

Personally, I’m with the member who calls herself “Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong,” who says that if she and her husband want to have sex in their bed they should be able to.  We don’t even have a spare room in our house, and with that aforementioned teenager, sex in other places of the house is out of the question.

That’s not to say we’ve never let our kids sleep in our bed. Over the years, a cranky or sick infant or a scared toddler has found his way into our bed in the middle of the night and stayed there. I’m sure it will happen again and that’s okay. I’ll just sneak off for a nap the next day.

Related Reading: The Case for Co-Sleeping

Do you co-sleep, sleep-share, or bed-share?

Image Source: Oksidor via Flickr/Creative Commons

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.

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CoMMember13614888935826 CoMMember13614888935826 2 years
#1 ill informed. #2 self involved. #3 lacking creativity.
CoMMember13629822357878 CoMMember13629822357878 4 years
Mishelle Mc Shane - What I don't get is how you can decide that YOUR choice is the unselfish one and MINE must be wrong and damaging to my kids. I don't choose to co-sleep, I never have. My kids have their own space and my husband and I do too. We do for our kids 24-7 no matter WHERE they sleep but when I go to bed I want my own space. it is a personal choice and it is not for some unrelated uninformed person to judge me.
nikipoirier nikipoirier 4 years
i love my boys sleeping with me... when ther bigger ok but there 5yr and 2yr... and i had my first die when he was a month old so i will always want at least one of them with me. intill there too big or dont want to. i love it! i know there safe next to me!
CandiceCrowe CandiceCrowe 4 years
I co-sleep with both of my boys. They both share my bed with me. While yes, sometimes, it would be nice to have my own bed again, they will not always want to sleep in my bed. They will not always want to be with their mommy. I love snuggling up with them at night as they do not always want to snuggle anymore. I cherish these precious moments but understand it is not for everyone.
LynnTullock96220 LynnTullock96220 4 years
I appreciate the "opinion" article. I don't think the writer is trying to change anyone else's mind, she's simply stating what works for her and her family. It makes me sad when others decide to attack or minimize her opinions just because they disagree. What she says makes sense to her as I'm sure your opinions make sense to you. I also believe that we can all find facts, figures and research to support our opinions. But, can't we just be polite to one another?
MargaretWhetstone MargaretWhetstone 4 years
My daughter only sleeps with me when she is too tired to care. She hates it. She needs a lot of space. She did it twice once when she was about 2 weeks old in the morning and last week when she was not feeling well and it was 5in the morning. She tried sleeping on all soft places in the house before being in bed with me. Dad was sleeping in the spare room when the whole thing got started! In a hotel she gets her own bed because she sleeps side ways on a double bed and there is no room for me. She is almost 4 now. She is a light sleeper we would know if she fell of. Plus i don't sleep well in a hotel.
Meghan79794 Meghan79794 4 years
My Husband and I enjoy co-sleeping very much so. It works for our family and I know that with 2 boys it will only be a matter of time before they dont want much to do with me :( So I will take my special time with them now :)
tanyagagnon tanyagagnon 4 years
I have co slept with my children 12,8 and 5the 8 and 5 year old are still sleeping in my bed I find nothing wrong with it....when their ready they will go in their own bed
JenniferJulius JenniferJulius 4 years
How about actual research on the matter instead of ill informed opinion?
JaimeCentrella JaimeCentrella 4 years
whatever decision you make be confident in it. Gather information from many sources, even opinions and then think for yourself and own your choice to yourself not the world unless asked by a friend what you do and why or you need to write a blog about it.
MishelleMcShane MishelleMcShane 4 years
DRAMA DRAMA DRAMA................. read this topic a million times now and a for the MILLIONTH time I just don't get what people have against co sleeping!!!!! I once read a mum sayin a baby had NOTHING to loose in her bed.............. LIKE WTF ure baby was prolly made there!!! Some people seriously lack parent-child connection...... No wonder kids grow up to feelin rejected n not wanted, My son is 7 and still sleeps besides me. He says on his own that one day he will sleep in his own bed.... Leave a child to grow outta it, of course u can train it. So please actin STUPID and enjoy ure kids for the time as one day u'll prolly look back and regret it!!!!!
AnnGraperManion AnnGraperManion 4 years
This is a personal choice and there is a lot of good research to read through (both pro and con) before you make your decision. Our first born was up often and by the time he was 4 weeks my hubby said his friend tried co-sleeping and they loved it. So we looked into it and decided to try it. Hubby made a "side-car" to start the night for baby, we used that for our intimate times too. We all got much more sleep! By the time the 2nd came along our fist born was 28 months old and wanted his own space... this was the baby that I'd let become very dependent on on me... he gained security from the sleeping arrangement! The 2nd was more independent right from the start and he moved into his brothers room as soon as he could walk... then his own sleeping space when he was 2. When the youngest was born we stuck with co-sleeping. The youngest was under 2 and joined the oldest. They never had to be alone unless they wanted it. They are now happy, independent adults. Research and decide what is best for YOUR family.
JaniceColeman55042 JaniceColeman55042 4 years
I think its a personal decision. With my daughter, she had colic and we began accidently falling asleep together. Then after colic subsided we happily co-slept till she was 9 months. We took all the precautions with blankets and pillows. Intimacy was never an issue because she napped and spent the 1st 3-4 hours of sleep in her crib. Transitioning he to her crib all night was only tough for a few days and I know many families who have to sleep train their babies who never co-slept so its not that different. My soon is now 11 weeks and we co-slept from the beginning. Yet last night at 1am he was having issues sleeping so I placed him in his crib and after 2 minutes of crying he fell asleep and is still sleeping now at 7:30am. I get the feeling we will be co-sleeping a much shorter time with him and that's okay too.
AlisonKlein AlisonKlein 4 years
We did co-sleep with our daughter. She was a very fussy baby and would keep me up all night so I would lay down to breastfeed her and end up falling asleep. It took FOREVER to get her out of our bed and I believe it has caused serious sleep problems both for her and my husband and I. I am now pregnant with my second child and do not ever plan on sharing my bed again, though who can say whether or not this baby will also be difficult? I may end up co-sleeping again...
LareciaTucker LareciaTucker 4 years
I have no problem either way. With our first 2 kids there wasn't much "co-sleeping" in the bed. With the 3rd and last one....a lot more.
LilianaNorgaard LilianaNorgaard 4 years
I would like to say that this is a personal choice. I did not co-sleep and I have a beautiful bond with my daughter. I also breastfed her and she slept in a bassinet in our room until she was 6 months old. I really do not feel she is any better or worse off than a child who sleeps in a parents bed. Safety is an issue in my opinion but if you are conscious of it and responsible all the power to you. I think that everyone's reasons are personal and there should be no judgement on either side. I pray for the family who lost their precious babies.
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