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Parents Panel: What's one thing you tried to get your little one off to sleep?

Co-sleeping, late night drives… and a run-in with the Gardaí.

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AS PART OF TheJournal.ie’s weekly Family Magazine, we wanted to create a space for parents to share their views. A place where mums and dads could share their experiences, lessons learned, and even mistakes along the way. With that in mind, we’ve launched TheJournal.ie Parents Panel.

This week, we’re asking our panel: What’s one thing you tried to get your little one off to sleep?

We caught up with some of them at home – and read on below the video for more responses.

Source: TheJournal.ie/YouTube

Three (or four…) in the bed

Co-sleeping worked for us every time. If any of my babies woke up for a feed or a cuddle, they came into my bed and that was it for the rest of the night. Obviously there are times when it’s not safe to co-sleep, but in general I found it a great solution.

- Susannah O’Brien, mum to four kids under ten

Confusing the Gardaí

I recall one night taking my eldest son out for a 2am drive to soothe him to sleep. I had a thesis paper due the following morning, and once he fell asleep, I pulled into a field gate, took out my laptop and started working. Around half an hour later, a Garda knocked on the window. He must have been a father too, because once he saw the sleeping child in the back he just laughed and gave me that knowing look!

- Derek McInerney, single parent with sons aged 13 and 9

Pre-bed dance marathons

She is two years old and hasn’t slept a night since she was born. At the moment we try to get her dancing to the music on MTV for a good hour before she goes to bed, which seems to tire her out.

- Denise Cumiskey, single parent to daughters aged 15 and 2, and an adult son

No more night feeds

We worked on pushing their middle-of-the-night feeds later and later until they eventually were sleeping through until morning. If they woke for a feed, we’d give them the dodie instead, and they’d go back to sleep for another hour. We have three fine sleepers today.

- Alan Dooley, dad to sons aged 8 and 10, and a daughter aged 4

Guilty road trips

When my youngest was six months old, my two-year-old suddenly decided to give up her daytime nap – the only time in the day when I had an hour entirely to myself. I tried taking them both on long drives to help them nod off, but guilt about my carbon footprint forced me to concede after about a week.

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- Denise, mum to a daughter aged 3 and a son aged 1

Three years of patience

My sons both woke up every single night until they were three years old. I can still remember the first morning the two of them slept through until 6.10am. I felt like I’d won the Grand Prix.

- Suzie Kelly, single parent to boys aged 6 and 3

Daily strolls in the pram

Our daughter suffers from a family trait: FOMO, Fear Of Missing Out. She really fights going for afternoon naps. The only thing that works consistently is taking her out walking in the pram, so I’ve started walking from our house into the village three times a day, religiously.

- Ríona Flood, new mum to a 12-week-old girl

Breastfeeding and late-night TV

My son was breastfed, and that was a surefire way of satisfying him if he woke at night. I feel like I should get a degree in goldmining from the hours spent watching late-night episodes of Gold Rush on the Discovery Channel!

- Olly Keegan, mum to a 3-year-old son

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Want to know a bit more about this week’s featured panel members? You’ll find a bio on each member here.

More from our Parents Panel: What’s the one thing you wish you’d been told before having kids?>

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