‘Co-sleeping and bed sharing are wonderful. If you feel worried about these things because people make you feel this way, don’t.’

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“You might be the mother who feeds her baby to sleep, who rocks and sings to her baby before putting her down. You might be the mother who wears her baby as they sleep in a carrier. Or let them rest on your chest, the pram or drive around for hours till they fall asleep… and if you are, well I want so to say you’re beautiful… and well done. Trying to get a baby to sleep is the most difficult thing in the world. Sleeping is just some things they do not like to do, despite what we are told. You are not making a rod for your back. You are not doing anything wrong. There is nothing wrong with your parenting skills. There is nothing wrong with your baby. It’s only a sleep problem, if it’s a problem for you.

Co-sleeping and bed sharing are wonderful, especially if they feel wonderful for you. If you feel sad or worried about these things because people make you feel this way, don’t. You are doing what feels right for you. These people don’t come home with you, don’t sleep in your bed, and they aren’t your baby, so their opinion is invalid. Do not let them make you second guess what an amazing job you’re doing. Shoulds will always come up in our mind, but babies change constantly, you won’t be rocking a 10-year-old, I promise. You are a wonderful mother who is doing the best for their child, their sanity and everyone’s well being.

Or you could be the mother who just NEEDS sleep, who doesn’t want to rock anymore, who wants to rest and for their baby to sleep in a cot. Who feels lack of sleep sends their anxiety into overdrive. Who wants help from sleep consultants or sleep schools and feels lack of sleep is contributing to feeling depressed. You could be the mother who has a routine, who’s baby has their spot to sleep, who avoids car naps like the plague and schedules their day around the babies sleep times. And I want to say to you, well done, well done for doing what works for you. You are a beautiful mother. You are not some monster who doesn’t love their child like some people will make you out to be. You are not incapable or a control freak, you are a wonderful mother who is doing the best for their child, their own sanity and everyone’s well being.

Or you could be in between and desperate to know if you’re doing it right. Well I want to tell you, you are, you are not broken, your baby isn’t broken.

I had two babies and did the exact same thing, one loves to sleep, and one doesn’t. Both drive me insane equally, but their sleep habits don’t dictate my parenting abilities, or their behavior in terms of a good or bad child. Your efforts are not wasted, you are not a failure. Even the most strong willed creative over thinking babies will sleep eventually. Their brains will grow, even though you may be so incredibly worried they won’t. They will, and they’ll be full of smartarse responses to keep you on your toes.

Every ‘expert’ will have an opinion on what is best. Every expert will have something to say that will make you feel guilty, but the truth is, it’s what works for you, and your baby.

Dummies, feeding to sleep, blankets, comforters… none of it is wrong. It’s all making this world a more comfortable place for your baby.

Remember, you are a wonderful mother, who is doing the best for their child, their own sanity and everyone’s wellbeing, take a deep breath. You got this.”

Laura Mazza

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Laura Mazza of Mum on the Run, where it originally appeared. Submit your story here, and subscribe to our best love stories here.

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