Like mastitis and sleep training, co-sleeping is one of those things I didn’t even know existed before I became a mom. As far as I knew, babies slept in cribs without complaint, and their parents slept eight blissful hours a night in their own beds.
The first time I heard the term co-sleeping, it was in reference to a family who took the practice to the extreme, their master bedroom turned into a patchwork of mattresses with three kids and two parents sharing one massive family bed. I was appalled.
Later, I learned that co-sleeping, or bed sharing, isn’t always so intense — that sometimes parents just share a bed with one baby or toddler. Still, I couldn’t imagine doing it myself. I wouldn’t want to risk rolling over on the baby, I reasoned. They need to learn independence, I thought. And, ahem, when would my partner and I ever have sex if there was always a baby between us?
I reflected on all of this early one morning after being woken up by a two-year-old’s foot being planted firmly on the side of my head. How on earth did I become a co-sleeping parent? To answer that question, we’ll have to take a look back.