OK let's pretend us parents actually sleep ...
Let's talk about those times when us parents actually manage to catch some shut-eye. You may need to concentrate as you think back so far through the haze of sleepless nights.
Now ask yourself which one of these amazing parents you are ... or who you would rather be!
This couple is face to face and breathe in each other's air all night. They often wake to the other staring at them in a lovingly/creepy manner and pass on all the germs from their sick kids meaning they share that head cold from person to person and back again. There is a downside to all that bed space too – the kids have somewhere to sneak in and they are too busy snuggling to notice.
How much should your child sleep?
How much should your child sleep?
While one lays in a fetal position, the other must snuggle right up and awkwardly place their arm beneath the other’s head, often resulting in dead arm. If you position yourself with your backs to the edge of the mattress, you again have way too much room for sneaky kids.
3. Toe touchers
Make warm memories. Your children will probably not remember anything that you say to them, but they will recall the family rituals - like bedtimes and game night - that you do together.
This position is fully separated but in a show of affection, the toe touch says, ‘I don’t hate you, I just need my space.’ This position is mostly reserved for hot nights after long days, but be warned: neatly-trimmed toenails are a must!
4. Other side of the bed sleepers
These guys know where it’s at. Mum has been touched all day and after finally falling into bed, Dad just knows not to encroach on her space. Smart man.
5. Separated sleepers
This couple have given up on all things in the night, or are stuck in 1953 where separate beds were not as uncommon. They might sneak into each other’s bed for a little ‘sexy time’ but will always, without a doubt slink back to their own room and for a better nights sleep.
"So this past weekend I was having a hard time finding the words (probably because I haven't had any sleep) to express to Kris why I'm not in the best of moods first thing in the morning," she wrote in the caption. The first image begins with Mum and Dad both sleeping peacefully alongside their newborn bub.
There may be some sexy time, but the separated sleepers will always retreat back to their own beds. Image: iStock.
6. Spread eagle sleepers
Guaranteed to have little to no space in the night, the kids are often found on the floor next to the bed because Mum and Dad literally spread their arms and legs so wide there is no mattress space even for a tiny human. Alternatively, the kids have learnt not to bother trying to sneak into their parents' bed from a young age and are blissfully asleep in their own beds where they sleep through the whole night. Every night. The spread eagle sleepers are also known as the smart sleepers or quite simply, the starfish.
Sarah Jessica Parker (mom to three son James and twin daughters Marion and Tabitha): “As a working mother high heels don’t really fit into my life anymore - but in a totally wonderful way. I would much rather think about my son than myself.”
7. The ergonomic sleepers
This couple has spent enough money on physiotherapists and pain killers to last a lifetime. Their bed has one of the most expensive ergonomic mattresses and they have pillows that cost more than a small car. They sleep flat on their backs with their arms by their sides because they know all too well the pain that comes from half hanging off a crappy mattress all night.
These parents love their sleep. They can often be found sitting on the couch in the early evening with their heads back and mouths wide open, sleeping while their kids watch movies and play video games.
The zombie can sleep just about anywhere. Image: iStock.
9. Musical sleepers
These parents know how uncomfortable it can be sharing a bed with children. They adapt, or rather roll with the punches (and more accurately, the kicks!) and when things get rough in their own bed, they relocate to another. This may result in Dad sleeping in a pink ballerina bed in the morning, or mum waking up clutching on to her son's pillow emblazoned with his favourite football team.
10. All kids welcome
Don't try to fix everything. Give young kids a chance to find their own solutions. When you lovingly acknowledge a child's minor frustrations without immediately rushing in to save her, you teach her self-reliance and resilience.
The last thing you need after a long day with the kids is a sleepless night and sometimes the only way to combat that is to open that mattress up to the whole family. Suddenly the child becomes the spread eagle sleeper while Mum and Dad are forced into being on opposite sides of the bed or risk a foot to the rib and a fist to the face. It may result in a visit to the chiropractor a few days later, but as long as you got some sleep you're winning!