The Gentle-to-Sleep Approach - Interview with Dr. William Sears

 

Is there an ideal age for parents to stop sleep-sharing?
Weaning from the bed is just like weaning from the breast. It could be when the child is two or three years old, or two or three weeks old. It's highly individual.

Many parents want to get baby out of their bed before baby's ready. How should they handle this?
I tell parents to put themselves in their baby's place. If you were a baby, would you rather sleep in a dark, quiet, lonely room behind bars or nestled right next to your favorite person in the whole wide world inches away from your favorite food? The choice is obvious! When a baby is used to sleeping first class, and you suddenly downgrade them, they are not going to take to that too kindly. One way is to use a sidecar, or co-sleeper, arrangement that attaches next to your bed. You can gradually increase the space between you and baby. A co-sleeper allows you to keep baby within arm's reach. Next, you can move baby across the room into his own crib and gradually to his own room. This is going to take time, because baby has been sleeping first class for seven or eight months. The transition is not going to happen overnight.

It sounds like baby calls all the shots. What about the sleep-deprived parents?
What baby needs most is two happy, rested parents. If parents are fighting because they're overly tired, then that's the signal to do something about it. A good parenting tip is, "If you resent it, change it."

Any more tips for moving baby out of your bed? I think this is a particularly vexing problem for PS parents.

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