No matter where your kiddos sleep, it’s hard to make time for the sexy stuff. But if you’re a co-sleeping family, that can make things extra tricky because #logistics. Today’s post is all about bringing sexy back (to your bed), just in time for the day o love!
Let’s get real on what I hear co-sleeping, most* of the time. You’re convinced it’s the only way your kids can get a good night’s sleep. And even if it means getting a lousy night of rest yourself, whatever’s good for the kids is definitely good for you.
Wait, pump the brakes!
Have you ever stopped to wonder about the impact co-sleeping might have on you long term? Or do you find yourself making up other excuses for why there’s no time for #sexytime behind closed doors? Sounds like you’re in deep, mamma, and it’s time to set things straight.
*Of course, I have heard of many positive co-sleeping relationships over the years. You just have to realize that by the time families reach out to me for help, they are ready for a change. If you aren’t, that’s okay! You do you, mama!
3 Reasons to Break Up With Co-Sleeping
1. Because it’s teaching your kids bad habits. Co-sleeping usually starts out of convenience, and sometimes desperation. Do whatever it takes to get the babe to sleep through the night. But what if I told you this band-aid fix will actually make it way more difficult for your little one to sleep well on his own in the long run?
When it comes to learning independent sleep skills, bed sharing can be incredibly confusing for your little one. When baby wakes up between sleep cycles and you’re right there to nurse her, rock her, or sing her back to sleep, you’ve essentially turned yourself into the most accessible sleep prop.
Once you’re ready to transition baby to her own crib, chances are she won’t be. Why? Becaue she hasn’t learned how to put herself back to sleep without you being right there. After a few sleepless nights (and probably a lot of heated conversations with your partner), you decide she’s just not quite ready to sleep on her own, so you bring her back into bed. And this can go on for months, if not years.
This vicious cycle doesn’t have to be your reality! If you want your little ones to sleep through the night, then they have to learn a new sleep skill—one that doesn’t involve mom and dad. It won’t be easy at first, but it does work!
Bad sleep habits might die hard, but you don’t have to tackle everything in one night. A little at a time can go a long way. If you’re determined to stay in close proximity to your baby when he’s sleeping, transition him from your bed to a basonette or a crib in your room. Then work your way up to a crib in the nursery the next week. The ultimate goal: teach baby to fall asleep independently so he can doze off when you aren’t in the room right next to him.
The good news is that once your child has moved into their own bed and mastered solo sleep skills, they will typically sleep much better, more soundly, and for longer than they do in your bed. Win!
2. Because while the kids may be co-sleeping, you’re co-laying-wide-awake. And that’s not just because you physically have less space in the bed. When the kiddos are in bed next to you, your subconcious kicks in…Can I roll over? If I move, will I wake her up? Is he breathing? You may sleep less soundly because some part of your brain is always listening for any little noise, and over time, that sleep deprivation builds up.
While you’re positive a little makeup will disguise your fatigue and no one will truly notice, I hate to say it…science says you’re wrong (and your husband might agree).
The University of Arizona released a study back in 2006 that showed sleep-deprived people have a higher tendency to blame others for problems, demonstrate increased aggression, and are less willing to behave in ways that facilitate effective social interaction.
Parenting is hard enough. You and your partner are faced with making a gazillion choices every day for how you want to raise your kids. Add one tired parent to this equation and you might feel like you can’t agree on anything.
On top of that, couples who don’t get enough sleep are less likely to show gratitude towards each other, and significantly more likely to feel unappreciated.
If that’s enough to convince you it’s time to transition out of co-sleeping, make some changes to your own bedtime routine starting tonight. The first time your kiddos aren’t sleeping in bed next to you, it will probably feel SO WEIRD. You might not be able to relax. And that’s totally normal.
Just like baby has to learn a new skill to fall asleep independently, you probably will too. I suggest forming some new bedtime rituals of your own. Maybe after reading a story to your little one in the rocking chair and put them down, you relax in the bath or sit down with a book. This is a great time for some much deserved self care!
3. Because your hubby started sleeping in the other room. ‘Nuff said, right?
I’m sure we’re all guitly of the “Sorry honey, I’m just too tired for sex” line. Your libido basically goes to die when you’re over-tired. Sleep deprivation only has to effect one person for the relationship to suffer. And when you’re so desperate for sleep or your partner is forced out of the bedroom altogher, sexy time just doesn’t happen.
Not to mention, with the kids in bed with you, it’s near impossible to find a private intimate moment. So, throw on some JT, because it’s about time to bring sexy back (to your bed).
Once you transition your littles to their own beds, create your bedroom sanctuary. Turn your bed be a place of cozy relaxation and luxury that you look forward to jumping into.
Then put your relationship front and center. With no kids in bed with you, you’ll not only have more space, you’ll get more time. Kid-free time. Time with your spouse to talk about life’s next adventures and challenges. Time to catch up on each other. Time to snuggle, and time for lovin’!
Some parents have told me they feel guilty transitioning away from co-sleeping, and even selfish for wanting to take their bed back. Well I’m here to tell you to let that go. For you, for your partner, and for your relationship, few things are better than good sex and a good night’s sleep.
Did you know that if you started making sleep changes THIS WEEKEND, you would easily have your bed back for Valentine’s Day? Bow chicka wow wow. And after all, if there’s one gift your kids will always appreciate, it’s seeing their parents happy, united, and in love.
Happy “get your bed back” week!