Mother-of-three and radio star Chrissie Swan has made a startling confession.
The kind of confession that sets Facebook alight.
In defiance of “parenting experts” and official advice she has revealed that she regularly breaks one of the parenting taboos, and she loves it.
Chrissy Swan makes a parenting confession. Via Facebook.
Writing on her Facebook page Swam, mum to Leo, 10, Kit, 5 and Peggy, 3, has told her fans she regularly co-sleeps with her children.
Swan wrote: “Of all the things in the parenting books that I read and tried to implement, the one thing I'm so glad I eventually ignored was the 'never let your kids sleep with you' rule.”
“They're big enough to go to bed in their own beds but they always, always end up wedged between me and Chris. Especially Peg.”
The radio presenter continued: “Waking up with them next to me and watching them as they sleep in, and feeling their warm little bodies and bony knees in bed at night next to mine is honestly one of my life's greatest joys.”
Chrissie Swan's post has been liked by thousands. Via Facebook.
She then acknowledged the “taboo” surrounding her confession.
“I know it's a personal choice but for me it has just been the loveliest thing. Enriching. If you love it too, don't let experts make you feel bad. They'll stay all night in their own beds eventually... and I for one will miss them.”
“I understand if it’s not for you,” Swan wrote. “Plenty of things aren't for me! But this one is and it has been the loveliest and most unexpected reward of motherhood for me.”
It's officially called co-sleeping but really after a child is out of the SIDS danger zone so it's simply the act of a sneaky little monkey crawling into your bed at night and invading your warmth.
It’s a contentious topic - one of the top three of parenting topics sure to be divisive.
Along with how you feed your baby and how you discipline them, co-sleeping debates are sure to drive the haters out of the woodwork and set the trolls at each other.
And just like that, it is the last night my second son, Kit, will be a 4 year old. Tomorrow he is 5. Five! Unbelievable. He has slept with a 'ruggie' every night of his life and I'm guessing even as a big 5 year old, the ruggie will still be around tomorrow night. And beyond. Happy Birthday Kit. You are just so lovely. X
But something surprising happened when Chrissie Swan posted this. Instead of the haters and the critics the floodgates opened.
Hundreds on mothers confessed to what they previously thought might be something to be ashamed of.
They confessed to something they previously felt was wrong or taboo or unwise. They confessed that they too allowed their little ones to sneak into their beds for a cuddle, that they too knew that feeling of tiny toes and elbows and knees pressed up against them.
And that they too loved it.
Such a simple topic, but one that reached into the hearts of many.
One woman wrote:
“Chrissy, you have made me feel so much better about my parenting choices. As a single Mum I often feel like I'm alone and doing something wrong for allowing my five-year-old to share my bed. But to be honest in my bed with me she will sleep uninterrupted for about 10-11 hours but on her own in her bed the sleep can be interrupted with the garentee [sic] of her climbing into bed with me….Thank you for your courage to speak out, I for one appreciate it.”
Another said: "It was very frowned upon when our two were growing up now (27 and 23) so we lied and said they didn't sleep with us but they sometimes did."
“Chrissy, you have made me feel so much better about my parenting choices." wrote one woman. Via iStock.
Another mother said she would be heart-broken if her children decided to stop climbing into her bed.
“I will take my night time visits and cuddles and ungodly early wake ups until they run out and I miss them. Because I will miss them!”
Another woman said while she gets “ridiculed” for it she doesn’t care.
“Totally agree it is the best part of my day both ends....laying down and having my 3 yr old snuggling in to fall asleep and waking to her beautiful faces and kisses. Highly recommend it to all.”
Others thanked Chrissie for her candid confession.
“Thank you thank you thank you Chrissie, my 2 year old will not sleep in her bed always wants to be in mummys bed, too many people shake their heads and say it's wrong and I've made a mistake, I like to think when she's ready she will sleep in her bed it's nice to hear it from someone else that I'm not doing the wrong thing and haven't made a mistake.”
Swan's post had hundreds in agreement. Via Instagram.
In an age when parent shaming is at its height and most parenting topics discussed online end up with a barrage of criticism, only one or two commenters - out of more than 500 comments made to Chrissie Swan’s post - said they didn’t like having their children sleep in their bed.
Perhaps one woman summed it up the best:
“My goodness this is EXACTLY how I feel about co-sleeping with my kids,” she wrote.
“Even though I sleep with half my arse out of the bed every night, I would not have it any other way."