Night time parenting: Why there is no expiry date in our house – guest post by an insightful TBSTP group member
This post was written by an Insightful Group Member who wishes to remain anonymous
From day 1, I’ve co slept with my boys.
When they were 4 and 6 and I was expecting my third, I transitioned them to sleeping in a double bed in their room with me, then when I gave birth my husband took over, sleeping with them while I had the baby in “our” room. We’ve since added another family member and the sleeping arrangements are the same.
I lie there at night listening to them laugh about farts and talk about friends from school. Tonight they were asking my husband what he wanted to be when he was younger and I found out he wanted to be a train driver. I never knew that about him. Just little things that get bought up in conversation that wouldn’t otherwise happen with the rush of everyday life.
I listened to them talk about which one of them was adopted (true sibling style) and laugh at shadow puppets. Before silence fell and they were all asleep: at 10pm after being in bed at 8.30.
There is nothing wrong with my kids. They’re not anxious or weird or insecure and that’s why they need their dad to sleep (they don’t NEED it at all actually).
They’re the opposite and quite frankly that’s because of how they’re raised, not in spite of it.
Some people say bed sharing beyond a certain age is neglectful or wrong or abusive, I have heard it all. But as a parent I’ve learned never to assume what you’d do in the situation because everyone’s family dynamics are different.
Our children are respected, they’re loved, fed, warm, happy, secure, safe. Attachment parenting doesn’t have a magical age cut off where it goes from being cute and fun and nice to weird or creepy or annoying. When I hear people insinuating that it frustrates me, but my children being who they are is a testament to that, and I’m not about to speculate on an age where I’ll finally say “enough“. We’re just enjoying our time now.
We already suddenly have two kids that can read, a child that tells us how to work the computer, two that can swim the length of a swimming pool, one has a 6 pack and they’re all getting so tall and lanky. They wash their own hair, they use the potty, the baby is even cruising around furniture and letting go of things to balance and will soon be off to a running start, every tiny thing we cherish.
I’ve literally not slept through the night for 10 years.
If I want to have sex with my husband we have to run off like naughty teenagers.
I barely eat anything that wasn’t once served to someone else.
I don’t have any new clothes, and the bags under my eyes daily really hurt, but I’m happy because my kids are happy.
And soon I’ll be 45 and they’ll all be moving out of home or have already moved out and I’ll have all the time in the world to do all the things I momentarily feel like I’m missing out on now.
And they’ll be obsolete.
And I’ll feel obsolete.
I’m busy now and I’m so tired but at least I’m needed.
I’ll never do anything in my life as special or important as this ever again (unless someone ends up needing an organ in which I’d gladly give them all).