Sleeping Arrangements

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Categories Napping, Overnight, Sleep

When I was busy nesting during my twin pregnancy, I had visions of both babies peacefully sleeping in their cribs… in the same room. From what I had read, sleeping together is supposed to bring comfort and safety to twin babies, my friends’ babies shared cribs/rooms, and since we only have one room for them, this was the ideal setup. It was fun and exciting, a personal challenge even, to find bedding and decor that were different for our b/g twins, yet still matching. We cleaned out their room, which was an office/storage space before, repainted it, furnished it with two sets of everything, and even put in a nice reclining loveseat. This was an intense undertaking that required the coordination of my energy level, Toddler’s sleep schedule, and Husband’s work schedule spanning several weeks. But the result is a pretty nice nursery, if I do say so myself.

Needless to say, since I am posting this, with a title of “Sleeping Arrangements”, this lovely vision I had has not come to pass. To continue, I must tell their sleep journey thus far.

When they first came home from the hospital, all four of us (Husband, twins, and I– Toddler stayed with grandma for a few days) spent our days and nights on the couch. We have a large sectional, so everybody fit. It was just convenient to have our babies and all our baby stuff on and around the couch while I was still recovering from my c-section and wasn’t all that mobile yet. However, it isn’t the most comfortable place to sleep, so Husband and I agreed on a new arrangement about two weeks in. He could take one baby with him to sleep in the bedroom; Baby Boy was a good choice because he was soon going 9pm-5am. Even Baby Girl was doing just one 4am feed, so this worked well for another month or so.

However, this also meant the twins never had matching schedules. So when Husband went back to work and I had to take both at night, I just fed Baby Boy at 4am when I fed Baby Girl. And this worked fine for a while too. Except, their daytime schedules were still all whacky, which I didn’t mind as much as long as I got enough sleep at night.

Until… we hit a growth spurt about two weeks ago. And they became more interested in their surroundings, so their feeds during the day were getting less and less substantial. Somehow, they got into a vicious pattern of waking each other up and snacking all night long, one at a time. Add whacky sleeping during the day, and we were all cranky, all the time. At over 16 lbs and almost 14 lbs, I KNOW they are more than ready to sleep through the night, doing which would hopefully regulate daytime routines as well.

Three nights ago, I made the sad decision to separate my twins. BB got kicked out and now sleeps in his crib, in the nursery. I had tried to get both to sleep in their room for naps (as I did with Toddler before she went in full time), but even that hasn’t worked out. They woke each other up constantly, even though I run a fan on high for white noise. This is NOT what I envisioned while putting together this beautiful nursery.

So, for my own sanity, I have now fully committed to sleep training these babies. BB has done really well. First night: 9:30-5:30. Second night: 10-6:30. Last night: 8:30-7. For the most part, he can put himself to sleep and stay asleep. BG, on the other hand, needs a lot of work. She’s more sociable, therefore can be easily distracted from hunger and sleep, so it’s often a guessing game what she really needs when she’s cranky. She’s also addicted to her paci for sleeping, waking 3 or 4 times a night for it to be replaced. It’s going to take some heart wrenching screaming for her to be weaned of this bad habit.

I haven’t even begun to work on daytime sleep, but is there ANY hope for both to ever sleep together???

lunchldyd is mom to an almost-3 yr old and 4 month old b/g twins in Los Angeles. She hopes her heart doesn’t break before her babies learn how to sleep.

 

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lunchldyd

lunchldyd is mom to 3 year old boy/girl twins and their 5.5 year old sister. She is now teaches part-time to juggle the needs of her young children. When not at work and the kids are asleep, she is addicted to watching TV and sometimes sacrifices sleep to read in bed. She lives in the Los Angeles suburbs with her husband, three kids, and two dogs.

6 thoughts on “Sleeping Arrangements”

  1. Our b/g twins slept in the same crib for the first 6 months and did fairly well. We went to seperate cribs in the same room until they were about 9 months old. At that point we were where you are now and had to seperate them.

    If it makes you feel any better, we moved them back in together when they turned 3. They’re 5 now and still share a room.

  2. Yes, there is hope! Be diligent about the sleep training. I had similar situations with my now 35-month twins. Even when they’re sleep trained we still go through phases where we have to reinforce it. But, like you, we were limited on space and only have one bedroom for them. So we NEEDED it to work. By keeping them together they have learned to sleep through each others’ crying. Sometimes I separated them for naps, but nights they stay together. I am so glad I was diligent and kept them together.

    It will work out. This hard time WILL pass. You can read my blog about our sleep training if you wish. http://kristenanddanellis.blogspot.com/2011/02/sleep-training.html

  3. We went with whatever worked at the moment. For the first few months, they slept together in one crib… in the living room. Once they were able to move enough to jiggle the mattress and disturb each other, we split them into two cribs. They definitely did best either right next to each other or on opposite sides of the house — they couldn’t tolerate being far apart while hearing the other cry. From about 4M-10M (guesstimates), they slept nights on opposite sides of the house because we couldn’t get their night-waking in sync (If I was going to be up 3-4 times a night either way, I’d rather have one baby at a time than two!). Once they started predictably waking just once a night and going back down easily after that feeding, we moved them into the same room, in two cribs. Around 18M they started sleeping together in one crib, about the same time they started sleeping through the night. (I don’t think those were as correlated as it sounds here.) They still share a crib, at 23M, for nights, and insist on it. For naps, they have to be in separate cribs, or they just play.

    To answer your question, YES, there’s hope. It may not come as soon as you want/need it, but some of the worst baby-sleepers turn into some of the best toddler-sleepers, in my experience. Also, my theory is that babies sleeping through the night is a LOT less common than books and websites, and even some other moms, would lead you to believe. Try not to beat yourself up over it. It’ll happen eventually. In the meantime, you do what you have to do.

  4. You need to do CIO for bedtime/nighttime with them together. My girl twin was better sleeper than my boy twin and his screaming woke her up, she cried some and eventually went back to sleep. 3 nights and we were done. For nap training, however, I advise you to continue separating them since their actual sleep times may never completely synch. We had my daugher in our room and my son in the nursery since he was a worse sleeper (familiar surroundings). I am a Weissbluth follower – worked for all three of my kids (I have a younger singleton).

  5. I agree with Mommy,Esq above, I recommend you sleep train them together, they will learn to cope. We were also done in 3 nights, with 50 minutes of crying together on the first night and progressively less after. We usually split them up for naps. My 3 year olds are great sleepers now, unless someone is sick.

  6. Keep at it!!! Our girls (now four) went through some phases here and there, but they’ve been sleeping together, more or less on the same schedule, since infanthood.

    I know some fellow twin moms who run in to get Child 1 as soon as he starts to wake up, to allow Child 2 to continue to sleep. Having always been together, though, our girls seem to completely tune each other out. The cat can sneeze too loudly, and they’re both awake…but they can snooze right through the other’s worst nightmares, even.

    I know the training can make for some tough days, but be consistent in working towards your goal, and hang in there! Best of luck!!! :) :)

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