« Each child is unique, it is not a matter of applying theatrical rules » explains Isabelle Filliozat speaking about letting the child sleep in the parents’ bed. (First chapter of Understanding children’s emotions)
It makes me think.
We often hear that we should not, that it is a very bad habit! And it is exactly what we thought when our kids were small.
It happened only very rarely. Sometimes, when they were tiny babies, they would finish their night in our bed, only because I was falling back asleep while he was feeding, but we never installed the kid in our bed. Why? Because we knew we were not supposed to, bt above all because I needed to sleep! I was exhausted, and the noises of the baby in the room would wake me up, even when he was only moving a bit. A good sleep was necessary for me, and if I were to have another kid today, I would still put him to sleep in another room.
However, I find this sentence interesting: it was the best solution for us, but not necessarily for other parents, other children…
« Does it feel like yes or no? »
It felt like no, but it won’t be the case for everyone.
Last weekend, I was discussing with friends who have hard time making their daughter go to sleep in the evening. She wants someone by her side. I was kidding with them: « Let her with me for a week, no problem, she will fall asleep at 8! »
Yes, for me it is important that the kids understand that after bed time it is parent time, but this is because I need it, simply.
Now I wonder: these parents might need it less than I ? This little girl might have reasons for needing to be reassured? (thinking about one of the questions raised later in the book: « what’s his story? ». In this case a recent change of countries, which means a world upside down!).
Maybe these parents succeed in finding a better balance than what I could do between what their daughter needs and what they are capable of giving her…
I need to ask them: « does it feel like yes or no? »