Futons &
Links of
Bilingual Interest
  Mia`s Bicultural Bedtime [home]
(Futons & Co-Sleeping)

mia and daddy on the futons

Click here for other mothers' stories of co-sleeping.

Our family kind of defaulted to the Japanese norm of sleeping all together on futons on the floor.

We started in the U.S., with me worried about suffocating or rolling over onto the baby. I did a lot of research online. The U.S. research was sometimes negative, sometimes positive.

http://www.lalecheleague.org/Release/cosleeping.html (positive)
http://www.babyreference.com/Cosleeping&SIDSFactSheet.htm (positive)
http://www.storknet.com/cubbies/attachmentparenting/mckenna-faq.htm (balanced look by respected Dr. James McKenna, Ph.D)
http://www.kellymom.com/parenting/familybed.html (comprehensive positive overview)
http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml99/99175.html (negative from U.S. consumer product organization)
http://sids-network.org/experts/carroll2.htm (balanced look by Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine)
http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?s=&threadid=117731 (a discussion thread from Mothering.com about problems with co-sleeping)

In the end, my Japanese husband reminded me that for hundreds of years, co-sleeping has been the norm in Japan. Also, Japan has a lower (3.4 deaths to 1000 live births) infant mortality rate than the U.S. (8 deaths to 1000 live births). They must be doing something right.

So we slept together on our futon mattress on the floor. Luckily my husband sleeps heavily and wasn't disturbed by Mia's wakings. It was so nice to just roll over and breast feed her (and fall asleep myself sometimes during the process) when she woke for night feedings. I think sleeping on futons on the floor also relieves some of the anxiety of "maybe the baby will fall off the bed." I don`t know if we would try it that way with a U.S. bed.

When we lived in Japan, we slept on three single, futon mattresses laid next to each other on the floor. I slept in the middle.

My husband and I find intimate time together after the baby is asleep. All in all, I was happy with our decision to sleep this way, but I heartily believe it is a personal, lifestyle choice.

Out of 42 responses on the Married in Japan list (Non-Japanese women married or in relationships with Japanese men) 32% said that their child/baby slept either in the family bed or on their own futon/bed next to the parents' bed. 10% said their child/baby slept in a room of their own.

Feel free to drop me a message about YOUR personal experience. I would love to start a page with many people's personal stories.


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