Sunday, 25 April 2010

Problem parents!

Bermondsey Mum has long suspected that she was not the only one...with bed-hopping children...and lo and behold, in the Guardian Weekend Magazine, Gordon Brown and David Cameron both admit to sleepless nights.  Not just them actually, Ed Balls & Yvette Cooper too (how does that work, both Cabinet Ministers, how many children under 5?!?).  

It's seen as a badge of honour or control, the claims that people make about their offsping's sleeping habits.  Bermondsey Mum attended 2 coffee mornings of her local NCT group listening to competitive mums outdoing each other with champion babies 'sleeping through' from birth, before accepting her abject failure and never returning.  Needless to say, BM was hopeless with the whole Controlled Crying business - crying uncontrollably herself - and embraced/resigned herself to the concept of intermittent bed sharing and only now that they are both of school age, can I (honestly) say that they sleep through the night and (recently) in their own beds!

Bermondsey Dad might disagree, but having agonized for years about various parenting strategies and where she was going wrong, Bermondsey Mum felt a certain sadness when she realised that a whole month of nights had gone by without night-time interruption by a small person and only she and Bermondsey Dad awoke in the marital bed. 

For anyone in the throes of that phase where sleep is precious and broken into 2/3/4 hourly slots, my only advice would be to chill about it - seriously, it's normal, everyone goes through it no matter what they say in public and it passes and a small part of you (once you've recovered obviously) will mourn its passing.   And then every so often, years later, when your bigger child wakes up just before the alarm goes off and comes into your side of bed for a morning hug, it will be a precious thing.

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