Friday, May 8, 2009

Bed share but not if your drunk, stoned or tired

So, Doctors are issuing warnings about bed-sharing.

Bed sharing is natural and the best way to connect with baby. Benefits of bed sharing or co sleeping are many. Bed sharing isn't the problem, it's bed sharing when your drunk (or been taking any intoxication, including weed, pills etc), or as the doctors put it:

"The Health Ministry advises against bed-sharing when: The baby's mother has smoked during pregnancy. The adult in bed with the baby has been drinking or taking drugs or medicines that might reduce their awareness of the baby. The sleeping adult is excessively tired."

The education should be around all of the above risk factors. Most people that i know that bed-share, including our family, just don't tell people because they don't want to be judged by ill-informed people who just work from fear. Most people do bed share in some way. But if you are not sure, then put the bassinet or the crib next to your bed... it works. We have the whole bedroom set up as a big bed, in other words a single and queen bed together.

Is bed sharing a cultural 'thing' as stated below?

"Auckland GP Shirley Tonkin said anti-bed-sharing messages had been "opposed by prominent Maori who have claimed that it is a valued cultural practice and to oppose it is being culturally insensitive".

David Tipene-Leach, former head of the Maori cot death prevention programme, said there was huge resistance in the community to banishing babies from the parental bed. Instead, he proposed the use of woven flax bassinets for use in a shared bed."

In my experience it is only uptight anglosaxons who make a thing about it. Most, if not all, other cultures do the natural method of keeping baby close, especially at the beginning, and building the connection between baby and mother and father. BUT no bed sharing if you are drinking, smoking or working 3 jobs so are very tired.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bed sharing and breast feeding set up a close attachment between baby and parents - and this attachment leads to a healthy, well adusted child. Not to mention a strong bond between parents and baby that amongst other things can make that adolescent stage far easier. For some bizare reason the benefits of deep attachment between parents and baby are undervalued in my culture. For some absurd reason its far more normal to ignore the cues of a baby and leave them to cry and feed them four hourly. This is counter-intuitive, and just plain hard work. I bed share and love it. I call it lazy-parenting - because it's so much easier to roll over and breast feed and doze off to sleep, than get up, put on the light etc etc. How do you think our ancestors got on with out bedrooms and light switches? It's actually far more normal to bed-share around the world than many realise. In fact, I have read that more people share beds than don't! Of course you should never drink, or take drugs while your sleeping with a baby, that's just common sense. But I found I got used to my child's cues pretty fast when he was a new born, and there was absolutely no danger of me rolling on him as I just became too sensitive to him. If he made a noise, I'd wake up and do what ever needed doing. A year and a half on he's thriving - he's emotionally secure and happy. he's developmentally ahead of his age range. He's never sick. He's always laughing and smiling and he knows he's loved for who he is - not for some person I'm telling him he should be.