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Profile for Jennifer Welsh > Reviews


Jennifer Welsh's Profile

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Good Nights: The Happy Parents' Guide to the Family Bed (and a Peaceful Night's Sleep!)
Good Nights: The Happy Parents' Guide to the Family Bed (and a Peaceful Night's Sleep!)
by Jay Gordon
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.47
113 used & new from $0.01

72 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We are so grateful for this book!, September 21, 2002
A few weeks ago I bought Good Nights. At that time my DH and I were sharing our bed with our 5 yr old and our 18 month old. Between the bouncing of the bed anytime anyone moved and the tight quarters and my little guy's night nursing every two hours, sleep quality was poor. I'd wake up every morning so tired, and my little guy would be out of sorts often, and my DH had a back ache from sleeping in wierd positions just to have room. My 5 year old said he never wanted to leave the family bed. We all loved it, but I had come to the point where it was time to move on! I'm no good to anyone when I'm that sleep deprived. I know that probably sounds awful to a lot of hardcore attachment parenters, but it was too much to take any more.
I read the book, and as they say, I laughed and I cried. I felt very affirmed for having slept beside our guys for so long, and I felt relieved; finally there was a book with tons and tons of practical information on how to deal with the not so perfect aspects of co-sleeping. (Love the title of the chapter on solutions to common family bed sleep problems -- "The Sandman Cometh.")
The chapter on helping a child wean from the family bed was a tremendous help to us. It gave us so many ideas for moving Ty to his own space that we were able to transition him to his own ROOM by using a few of the tips. Room, yes room! We got him bunk beds (Dr. Gordon and his co-author say it's the number one successful method family bedders have used!) for his previously unused bedroom. He was very excited and slept in there from the first night! After a week or so he got a little scared after watching a Scooby Doo movie, and wanted to return to our room for one night. By then we'd set up a bed beside ours, and we welcomed him back for what we hoped was only one night. Dr. Gordon says to realize kids will sometimes come back for a night or a part of the night, and to welcome them. I agree. If we'd pushed him out, it would have been like the forbidden fruit. The next night he was back in his room. I followed another tip in the chapter and when he was apprehensive about going to sleep, I promised to do some work in the family room right next door to his room (our BABY was now sleeping through the night most of the time and I could do this! - more on this in a minute) and this was very comforting to him. Next time I checked, it was sleep city in his room. Since then, he hasn't revisited. All he asks is that I lie in bed with him after shutting out the light after booktime, so I can be with him as his eyes adjust!
As far as Zach, we did end up using the 10 Nights method. I couldn't really do that when Ty was in the room, because I knew it would mean some crying. But it really worked for us! By night 8, Zach was snoozing for five hours straight. He is now happily sleeping through the night in our bed. It is SO much easier this way, and everyone is so much better rested. My DH no longer has back aches! This is all like some kind of miracle. (I felt awful, awful, awful the first few nights of 10 nights because Zach was indeed protesting, but I was right there and I think he "got" it that he wasn't going to have to go through this alone. I'm glad I didn't do this when he was younger, because I could actually explain it to him a little and I think that helped.) In addition, the book helped us decide to replace our mattress with a futon because everytime one of us moved, the others moved too and it was bad for sleep. With the futon on our box spring, there's a tremendous improvement! You just don't feel every move of the other bodies.
We worked hard to make all this work. (We paid a tidy sum to the bed store(s) for the bunk beds, the twin bed in our room, and the futon!) But oh, was it worth it! I never regret for a minute doing the family bed. There are so many memories I'll treasure, and so much good has come to us all from it. (I loved the quotes from all the former family bed kids in the last chapter of the book. If you have doubts about how these kids can turn out, read this!) However, I also don't regret for a minute having followed the advice in Dr. Gordon's book. Life is good when you get enough sleep!
I recommend Good Nights to anyone who 1) wants to co-sleep and wants to know all the great benefits or 2) is co-sleeping and wants help with dealing with the everyday problems or the big weaning stuff.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 8, 2011 7:38 PM PDT

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