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Sleeping with Your Baby: A Parent's Guide to Cosleeping

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  356 ratings  ·  46 reviews
Sleeping With Your Baby: A Parent's Guide is your guide to understanding how to make nighttimes with your baby safe, fun and relaxing! Written by James McKenna, the world's authority on co-sleeping.
Paperback, 128 pages
Published May 15th 2007 by Platypus Media (first published January 1st 2007)
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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  356 ratings  ·  46 reviews

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Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A great resource with science based evidence. This book solidified my reasoning and quelled my fears about bedsharing with my son!
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: parenting
Great resource! So good to read real science-based information about co-sleeping and bedsharing.
Jan 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle, parenting
I liked that this book had very clear safety guidelines for co-sleeping, including illustrated do's and don'ts. I felt that there was an even-handed approach, advocating room-sharing vs. bed-sharing where risk factors exist. And they did a fine job of evaluating the recommendations against co-sleeping and then pointing out where more data needed to be studied. Appendix III (the AAP SIDS statement) and Appendix IV through VII (the responses from individuals/organizations who disagreed with the ...more
Apr 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Reading The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding totally changed the way I parent, and this book, Sleeping with Your Baby helped me feel great about bedsharing, something that our culture, media, and even the AAP warns against. My thought is that if something feels good and natural and has worked throughout the course of human evolution, it is probably a good thing to do on many levels, as long as the parents educate themselves and do it safely. This book had a lot of "good science," and is a helpful ...more
Sep 18, 2009 rated it liked it
This book is a must-read for those interested in co-sleeping, but that being said, it's not a must-buy or must-have. Borrow a copy from a friend or get it from the library.

Quick read (1 day). Gives guidelines and history of co-sleeping and bed-sharing, with tips on how to do it safely.

See also his websites:
Sandra Hatton
Jul 19, 2012 rated it really liked it

I felt it was a little repetitive, but it had a lot of interesting facts about co-sleeping/bed sharing. I learned a lot and had all my suspicions and beliefs about the dangers of "crying it out" and importance of bed sharing confirmed. I definitely recommend all new mommies and daddies read this before they have their baby so that they can start co-sleeping from day one guilt-free. Everyone gets more sleep!
Jul 22, 2012 rated it liked it
Really simple book. Good practical do's and don'ts, but nothing too suprising. Draws attention to the fact that much of current Western practice is based on cultural preferences and assumptions rather than research, and that the media has overstated the dangers of cosleeping, especially considering it is predominant practice in much of the world.
Sarah Joy
Good reference, super quick read. I give it three stars only because I was expecting more content, or more secrets that aren't already easily extracted from other parenting books I'm reading.

I guess it's just reassuring to have one book on my shelf that's an authority on the subject, though. James McKenna truly is an amazing researcher and pioneer for infant sleep health!
Feb 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is a pro co sleeping guide to all the benefits of sleeping with your baby, how to do so safely and when not to. This book made me feel everything I already felt was right indeed was.
Sep 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is very informative in many ways. At the very least, it opened my eyes to the data suggesting that bad sharing can be safe in certain circumstances.

Unfortunately, it did leave a few questions unanswered for me, and because of that, it still left me with some doubts.

I will also note that the book is very brief, the section on how to bed share safely, particularly so. Nonetheless, there is a fair but of repetition. I was left with the impression that an effort had been made to pad out
Mar 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I devoured this book in one sitting. A lot of the information i already knew but having the scientific data to back it up made me even more comfortable.
We had already decided to co-sleep, but i liked the reinforcement of correct ways to do it, outlining the benefits and again, data to back it up.
If you’re considering cosleeping, on the fence about it, or want more detailed info, this is the perfect read. It’s also short, easy to read, and to the point.
Nov 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book

This is a great book with science based evidence supporting cosleeping (which I said I would never do - until I had my son). I just wish it was longer.
Emily Monroe
Jul 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is an easy-to-read reference and "how to" guide for safe bedsharing (cosleeping) practices. I learned a lot and will reference this book after my baby is born for safe practices.
Emily Dyan Ibarra

A fast and simple read, but feeling more confident and understanding of cosleeping and how to do it properly. Would recommend.
Aug 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a quick and easy read, full of information. This was on my to-read list but I read it for a class assignment.
Nov 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Co-sleeping is not black or white - it is very important HOW yo do it and this book is a good guide on safe co-sleeping.
Jun 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Easy read. Lots of information about cosleeping, supported by evidence based research. I would recommend this to new parents. My husband read it as well and found it helpful.
Feb 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
enjoyed this factual and yet easy to read, slightly opiniated quick and easy book. very encouraging for co sleeping
Mar 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this whilst my son was curled up sleeping next to me. Although I was already bed-sharing and happy with my decision, this book has really made me
feel more confident about discussing it with other people and am happier to advise others to do so.
Erika RS
Jul 15, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: parenting, owned, kindle
This book contains a lot of useful information on why cosleeping is valuable to both infants and parents. It also clearly differentiates different types of cosleeping -- bed sharing vs sidecar style vs room sharing -- and their varied risks.

I think that understanding the risks of cosleeping and how to avoid them is important for any family. As is noted often, not just in this book, most parents end up sharing a bed with their infant at least some of the time. Knowing how to do so safely is thus
May 25, 2014 rated it liked it
We plan on roomsharing for sure and will probably dabble a bit in co-sleeping and see how that goes. This book has some good info however there are two big drawbacks to this book:

1. McKenna spends far too much of the early half of this book defending co-sleeping. This is understandable given co-sleeping is not viewed as acceptable by the mainstream (the American Academy of Pediatrics warns against co-sleeping). I think most people who take the time to buy and read the book are interested in
Feb 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars. The author is the leading researcher of infant sleep/cosleeping so I was hoping for a book with lots of science and data. Instead it reads more like a pro-cosleeping pamphlet, trying to convince parents that the stigma is overblown. But my family has already made our decisions re: bedsharing, so I wasn't looking for justification or cultural analysis--I wanted to know about the science. This book is light on actual information, and left me unsatisfied.
Jun 22, 2014 rated it liked it
This seemed to make sense based on all the other things I've learnt about babies recently. So i wasn't surprised to find similar arguments being used that I've heard before - its impossible to spoil a baby, babies that are attended to more promptly cope better, cry less etc and on and on. It supports itself pretty admirably with a ton of science, and provides jumping off points to delve further into the subject if you remain unconvinced.

Based on what I've learnt and read, alot of the ways I
Sarah-Mae Adam
Apr 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book had very clear guidelines to how to, and who should, safely co-sleep with your infant. While the author is clearly pro-cosleeping, he continues to stress that co-sleeping is not for everyone, must be practiced safely, and that there are certainly situations in which parents and families should not co-sleep.

"This book is intended to provide a balanced, comprehensive and holistic perspective on cosleeping and bedsharing, specifically while breast feeding. It is intended to provide safety
Feb 28, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2008
While I don't have any children yet I picked up this book to hopefull learn more about co-sleeping as this is something that I will be doing when I become a parent.

I found the book very simply written and honestly did not learn anything that I had not already known. What I did find in the book I feel is common sense to me but I can see how someone who has never heard of bed sharing would learn a great deal from this book.
Sep 03, 2015 rated it liked it
If weren't sure about co-sleeping, this is a good book. But if you were pretty much sold on the idea beforehand, this book just provides the scientific and cultural support for the practice. There are one or two things you can do to make it safer, but that is the extent of the new information I got on the topic. Isolate your bed to eliminate cracks, don't smoke, and, keep pillows at a safe distance, don't use heavy blankets. 'Nuff said!
Sep 27, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: paper-book, family
If you are considering co-sleeping (or bedsharing), but are hesitant, this books tells you what to do, and what not to do. It is filled with practical tips and answers to frequently asked questions, and is great for parents wanting to know how to co-sleep safely. I was only disappointed that it merely discussed the potential benefits of co-sleeping cursorily.
Very good overview of the subject, with solid science and research. Not as life changing as Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family, though.
Oct 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
What a great book. It is nice to read the positive & scientific facts behind cosleeping. McKenna is an anthropologist & has a mom/baby sleep research lab at Notre Dame. Cosleeping has many benefits for mom & baby esp for breastfeeding, attachment & safety. It was quick & easy to read too!
Mar 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Good, consise read about the benefits (and cautions) of co-sleeping -- a term which includes bed-sharing and simply having the baby sleep in your bedroom on a separate surface (i.e. crib, bassinet, co-sleeper).
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Dr. McKenna is the author of Sleeping with Your Baby: A Parent's Guide to Cosleeping .

He received his undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley in Anthropology and his Ph.D. from the University of Oregon, also in Anthropology, specializing in the evolution of human parenting systems and human development. He taught at the University of California at Berkeley for two years