Mommy . . . can I get in bed with you? Can we cuddle?
I love and hate these words. My 6 year-old probably comes in a once or twice a week in the wee, wee hours of the morning, walking all the way around the bed to my side, tapping gently next to me and whispering this age-old question.
I love that he still wants to cuddle—and he is so snuggly. However, I also thought I left interrupted sleep with diapers, temper tantrums, and bottles–in the past! Obviously not. A few days ago over-tiredness finally won out. I told him he needed to try and go back to sleep first, but if he really needed a parent, to wake up dad.
Bad decision. He woke up dad, which woke me up anyway. (I’m a light sleeper.) The result: Mom still awake and now doesn’t even get the benefit of snuggles.
I know many will say he really needs to just stay in bed and work through it. But I also know snuggly time isn’t going to last that much longer with a 6 year old boy. So, we’re going back to the old way.
Kathleen Rundle posted an interesting blog on a related subject. She wrote:
They may not talk about it often but most American families actually have family beds to some degree. Some families do insist that children sleep in their own beds every night, no matter what. Most parents at least allow their children to join them when they have nightmares. Many allow them to whenever they like. Some parents even encourage their children to join them at night.
There’s also a lot of interesting research on snuggles. One recent study found that a mother’s cuddle is a natural painkiller for babies.
What do you do in your house?