Making A Case For Co-Sleeping
Contributed by Sara Dawkins
Why is co-sleeping with your child viewed as taboo for many individuals? Regardless of the argument, there is always a counterpoint that makes equal sense. Do people simply want to have nothing more than a reason to complain? What makes one parent's way of raising a child the only way of raising a child? A number of instances can cause SIDS [sudden infant death syndrome]. To put blame on a loving family because the child was in the same bed would be akin to punishing the parents for allowing a child to perish in a fire because they were in the same house. Sometimes, circumstances are just out of our control.
SIDS in bed
There is an argument that persists that co-sleeping is dangerous and some courts will charge parents with homicide in the event of SIDS. However, far more cases of sudden infant death syndrome can be attributed to sleeping in a crib. As long as safety precautions are taken for the child, the risk can be quite nominal. However, those against co-sleeping would rather you believe that any child sleeping in the parent's bed is at greater risk than those within cribs.
Regardless of where the baby is sleeping, special requirements need to be looked at. Fluffy comforters or other objects such as pillows can cause a baby to suffocate. As infants don't have a developed ability to turn themselves over, this could pose a serious threat. These are the same precautions you take for letting baby sleep in a crib.
Spoiling the baby
A large portion of those against co-sleeping argue that the situation is "spoiling the baby." The basis of this opposition is how some parents are unable to separate their toddlers from their beds as the child will simply not sleep alone. However, putting a more forceful foot down and demonstrating the importance of a "big girl" or "big boy" bed could alleviate a great deal of the complications parents face in this situation.
If creating a stronger bond with your child is considered "spoiling" them, then maybe there needs to be more. Too often, children become isolated from their parents through various actions. It is the parent's job to stay involved with his or her child and any method that will create a stronger bond should never be scoffed at. What spoiling parents need to come to terms with is that you are the parent, not a friend. While it may be difficult at first, there comes a time where rules need to be enforced. It may be a scary first couple of days for your child, but eventually they will learn to sleep in their own beds.
Organizations around the country put emphasis on protecting children. Although this is a noble aspect, how much involvement is considered extensive or ridiculous? Some can point out that the involvement social services puts into a household in today's society also coincides with a rise in violent children. How can someone who doesn't have children of their own have the experience to tell you, "you're doing it wrong?" If the child grows up happy, healthy and loves you, then you are a success regardless of what a textbook tries to tell you.