He Sleeps / She Sleeps

He said / She said
Tales of Man vs Woman !

Welcome back to our ‘He Said / She Said’ series and to #4 in the series. We’d unintentionally taken a break from this series but with good reason – we got married 🙂 , had our ‘Mini-Moon’ in Galway, Nip#1 started big school & I appeared on national radio – are we forgiven?! Hope so 🙂

But we’re back so strap on your ear goggles & get ready to go.

Nutshell version:

How unbelievably different our sleeping habits are – they couldn’t be further apart from each other if you tried!

Man from MarsHe Said:

So let’s just put it out there – I’m the fella who can sleep anywhere, anytime, anyplace in pretty much any position or situation – even if I’m not tired. It’s a gift, seriously, it is.

The very (very) odd time, it can take a while for the lights to go out but relative to others, it’s probably not that long at all.

Flip the coin and if I don’t get a certain amount of sleep, I’m all over the shop and will try to carve open a situation which will enable me to get some kip. Years back, I use to have a long commute to work, and I’d get to work early on purpose so I could get some kip in the car – to be precise, in Tesco’s carpark – with people buzzing about and there’s muggins having a bo-peep in the jammer!

The lads use to tell me I suffered from ‘TATT’ – ‘Tired All The Time’ haha but I was. However, I was never lazy, I worked two jobs (office & pub) for over 5 years in my twenties (while also studying for my QFA exams I might add!) & then again in my early thirties when we lived in Cork. But I was always tired so TATT was a great description of me.

However in my defence, knowing what I now know about my heart i.e. finding out I’ve heart disease and the whole stents thing, it absolutely makes sense that fatigue would have been a factor for me, sure my valves weren’t getting the correct level of blood supply in both sides of my heart FFS! And The Missus will vouch for this, since getting the stents in, my energy levels are very different to what they use to be. I don’t get unusually tired anymore – I do of course get naturally tired from a 17/18 hour day looking after the Nips but so would anybody. Having said that, proper exhaustion kicked my ass last week for the first time ever and it was like getting hit with a sledge hammer if I’m honest.

This is fact – when The Missus was preggers with Nip#1, at night she’d ask me to try and talk her to sleep with relaxing phrases and sentences while I rubbed her back. But she’ll tell you herself, all it did was make me fall fast asleep way before her! Ouch. No surprise here but I was relieved from those duties fairly lively!

And when Nip#1 was born, I had it tough. 8 hours sleep each night, bloody hell that was hard I’ll tell ya (messing of course!). But there was good reason. Nip#1 absolutely refused to drink any bottle – ever. She only wanted the boob and that was that. I wanted nothing more than to feed her a bottle, in fact because I couldn’t, I missed out on some serious daddy/daughter bonding as a result which genuinely got to me. To this day, I’ve always been second choice for Nip#1 and I really feel it stems from not being able to feed her a bottle when she was a baba.

I have to say The Missus was absolutely amazing, I don’t think any man could do what she did for the length of time she did it for. 16 months of breastfeeding – 16 months – every 3 hours with no break, day & night – stand up woman and take a bow – fuck me, amazing.  I repeat, no man could do it, I certainly know I couldn’t.

It’s different with Nip#2. Bar a short time when she went off the bottle, she’s taken a bottle since day 1 to today and she absolutely loves her ‘bop-bop’. So I’ve been involved with feeding her from the start and I love it. I find it’s a great opportunity to constantly whisper into her ear ‘Daddies girl – you’re gonna be Daddies girl OK’ 🙂 !!!

After we got Nip#2 home form the hospital (she was 6 weeks early), I was waking up with The Missus every 3 hours to take turns feeding and prepping the bottles etc. After a few days of this, I was in a joker, honestly I was. Didn’t know my arsehole from my elbow. Turns out when I’m that knackered, I’m the exact same as I when I’m pissed out of me head!!! I can’t walk straight, I can’t talk properly, I can’t keep my eyes open correctly, I mumble, I repeat myself and I’ve zero memory of what I had just listened to – uncanny!!

I’ve fallen asleep standing up on a moving Dublin bus – fact. I’ve fallen asleep on the jacks. I’ve fallen asleep on the floor numerous times. I’ve fallen asleep on a plane while reading the paper with my head resting on the paper – fast asleep. I’ve fallen asleep in an office on the table & floor. Get the drift?!!

Right, Nip#2 is asleep and I’m off to join her 🙂

Woman from VenusShe Said:

Now I must start by saying that I’ve never been much of a sleeper – all my friends can vouch for that however when a baby comes along I think everyone is in for a big surprise on the sleep front. When Nip#1 arrived I was overridden with adrenaline and high as a kite on oxytocin – I didn’t need sleep, I could have just sat and watched her all night. That only lasts so long – eventually you need the sleep. “Sleep when the baby sleeps” is a crook of sh1t – I don’t know many mums who were ever able to do that. Nip#1 was a pretty easy child – now she wasn’t one of those sleeping through the night from eight weeks but she definitely had a routine and stuck to it. I exclusively breastfeed from day 1 and eventually when we decided to introduce a bottle, our beautiful daughter was having none of it. The night pattern for the best part of year was a feed every 3 hours so that’s what my body got used to. I thinks it’s fair to point out at this stage that Ross is a great sleeper – he could literally fall asleep anywhere and at any time – see below!

Ross aka the stented papa sleeping on a plane leaning on his newspaper
Could literally sleep anywhere

So when Ross would wake from his 8-10 hour slumber and turn to me and utter the words no mum wants to hear “God I’m knackered” …..I swear to God, anytime he said it I was like “Really??? You’re tired?? From what exactly? Too much restful sleep?!“. (Warning to all new dads out there – unless you are sharing the nighttime feeding routine never complain about being tired ever again).

The Worry:

So what came with motherhood was ‘Worry’. It was a form of worry which I had never really experienced before – worry that she was too hot, too cold, not breathing, in a draft, worry that I wouldn’t hear her due to tiredness…..so usual mum stuff. This is exactly the type of thing which would keep me awake for hours despite being exhausted already. There was one particular night when I woke up Nip#1 was turned around in the bed (head was were her feet normally went) – out of fright I woke Ross to find out if he had possibly moved her. He sleepily told me he hadn’t – what happened next was he went straight back to sleep and I sat awake for the night trying to figure out ‘did I wake up and turn her around & don’t remember it‘, ‘did she somehow move herself around? Not likely as she can’t really move at all‘ ‘did Ross do it and forget?‘……it still remains a mystery to this day. I’m sure Ross may have even forgotten this story as it was such a non-event to him ;o)

And then came Nip#2:

When we were pregnant with Nip#2 we agreed we were going to introduce a bottle early with albeit with breastmilk but I knew I wanted some help with the night time feeding this time round. So that’s what we did – in fact it took a while for Elle to latch on as she was in ICU for a while so had been used to feeds via tube/bottle during that phase. So Ross helped out with the nighttime feeds for a while – till Nip#2 decided she was over this bottle thing and exactly like Nip#1 opted for breastfeeding only. I have to say it was very enjoyable watching Ross try to cope with the nighttime feeds – as I mentioned he is a great sleeper but more to the point is he is not great when he doesn’t get his sleep. Honestly by night 2 he looked drunk as a skunk trying to get Nip#2 to drink her bottle! It was very funny. So I managed the nights until it was time for me to go back to work and at that point she actually started sleeping better so even with some waking at night Ross has been able to cope with all of it and has been ever since.

We had a beautiful period when both the girls were sleeping but the only thing guaranteed with kids is that things will change….we’ve had weeks of Nip#1 crawling into bed with us followed by Nip#2 deciding that she is just going to be awake for a while at night. At this point I think we are both used to the missing sleep thing but are still wrecked from all the demands of the day followed by the demands of the night. That said I can’t help but think they are growing up so quickly that we should really enjoy those special bonding moments because before we know it they will be gone and the girls won’t want those cuddles & kisses.

What’s your experience of this? We’d love to hear your take on it so please leave your comments below. And if you liked it, share it 🙂

Love linking up with…

Pink Pear Bear
Sticky Mud and Belly Laughs
3 Little Buttons


My Random Musings
My Random Musings
Sparkles & Stretchmarks Sunday Best

40 Comments Add yours

  1. Ah congratulations on the wedding! Exciting! I love this series. My partner and I are just like you guys in regards to sleep! Thanks for joining us at #SundayBest – hope you’ll join us again tomorrow x
    Hayley McLean would luv you to read…Siblings In FebruaryMy Profile

    1. Agh thanks a million Hayley, so glad you love it. We’ve our next instalment scheduled for this weekend. Didn’t make Sunday as we are flat out with the wedding plans (4 & a bit wks away) so getting time to write new content atm is pretty much non existent! Thank you so much for commenting. Chat soon, Ross #SundayBest

  2. We’ve been ridiculously lucky with Ben sleeping. He usually goes down any time between 6-8pm and wakes up between 6-8.30am dependant if we have work or not. However I am so worried if we add a second child to the mix that we’ll feel the true meaning of sleep deprivation! #sundaybest

    1. Holy Christ!!! That is amazing amount of sleep for a baby / toddler. You guys must be well rested every morning?! Both the nips are sleeping better currently, obviously that can change overnight but bar one or two wake ups, generally it’s good atm so long may that continue!! Ya know, that is exactly what happened us when Nip #2 arrived. Turned everything on it’s head. We went from well rested to wrecked – permanently !!! But you adapt and get use to it!! Thanks for reading & commenting. Regards, Ross #SundayBest

    1. Thank you Corinne & well done on being the featured post! Also a big thank you Makenzie for hosting such a great linky! It was great news to get on a Sunday morning and made our day! Thanks once again, looking forward to linking up again next week 🙂 Regards, Ross #mg

  3. Love this post and hearing it from both sides….I struggle to get back to sleep during the day, unless I have had literally 2 hours sleep that night. My hubbie on the other hand is able to sleep through a tornado, motorbike revving right outside the window and 1681 screaming infants on their way to school. Thanks for linking up to #dreamteam x
    Bridie By The Sea would luv you to read…Surrender to SleepMy Profile

  4. Avatar Janet says:

    My daughter is 11 and still has a very erratic sleeping pattern. Routine has just never happened. Although she has always had a bed time, I can’t force her to sleep. I have noticed now, since she just started secondary school (September) she has slept better. When you’re so tired, it’s really difficult! I don’t sleep a lot now and I always joke I haven’t slept much at all since I had my daughter! I tend to live on coffee!

    I always enjoy reading your posts as I love seeing two sides on the story!

    Thanks for linking up to #AnythingGoes

    Janet would luv you to read…My Top 8 Gothic Monsters for HalloweenMy Profile

  5. Congrats you are #mg’s most clicked upon post from last week!

  6. I love the perspective from both sides guys.
    My hubby can sleep anywhere! Me, I’m fuelled on Coffee. I’ve run on under an hours sleep when the oldest was a tot, I would have played an awesome zombie extra in the walking dead mind! We’re lucky with the littlest though, he can’t get enough sleep, so happy days ! The best of it is, we’d all do it again, a thousand times over wouldn’t we 🙂

    Thanks so much both for joining in with #MMBC. Enjoyed reading your posts as always
    Jayne @ Sticky Mud and Belly Laughs would luv you to read…Kitchen Essentials For Your HomeMy Profile

  7. Avatar yvonne says:

    My husband can sleep through anything, his excuse when he doesnt wake up when the kids are screaming the house down is “I once slept through a hurricane!” Whether this story is true or not is debatable!
    yvonne would luv you to read…Social Media Blast – Instagram Week – Smile For The Camera!My Profile

    1. Avatar yvonne says:

      Sorry popping in from #bigpinklink
      yvonne would luv you to read…Social Media Blast – Instagram Week – Smile For The Camera!My Profile

  8. Avatar Petite Words says:

    Love this style of post! Ingenious! A wonderful, very insightful read #anythinggoes

    1. Agh Wow!! So happy you like it, we get a great kick writing them. ‘Ingenious’ – love that, thank you!!!! You should check out the first 3 posts in the series, I think you might like them too 🙂 Thanks for commenting. Regards, Ross #AnythingGoes

  9. Love reading the same story from two very different angles! I did the exclusive breastfeeding thing with my two as well and so was awake every two to three hours to feed. The Hubby still to this day insists that it was just as hard for him as he was “disturbed” by all the waking up. (Boo shucks!) Great post and the he says / she says concept is great! Congratulations on your wedding to you both. Hope you had an amazing day x #bigpinklink
    Rhyming with Wine would luv you to read…How Do I Answer the Hardest Question of All?My Profile

    1. Hey Dawn, sorry for the delay but I found you eventually thanks for your spam-bot tip off 🙂 Haha – ‘disturbed’ by the waking up, love it!!!! I use to say ‘Jayzus, it’s tough having 8 hours kip a night ya know!!’ – messing of course but still said it! You are the same as The Missus = amazing women. No man could do what you guys did, so my hat is tipped big time. Love that you love the series, we’ve more in the pipeline so make sure you are subscribed to my site (hint hint :-)) And thank you, the wedding was great, super super day. Chat soon, regards, Ross #BigPinkLink

  10. Oh sleep! The age old battle. I was always exhausted after the babes came along and found out I was anaemic. I was lie on the floor and sleep on the spot tired and that kind of exhaustion is horrid because you literally can’t function. Know exactly how you feel about being drunk! Great idea for a series! Thanks for joining us at the #bigpinklink
    Louise Pink Pear Bear would luv you to read…Big Pink Link 36My Profile

    1. The Missus The Missus says:

      Thanks for the comment Louise – wow it sounds like you had a rough time of it – that level of exhaustion particularly along with being anaemic is so difficult to manage. Delighted you’re enjoying the series #bigpinklink

  11. Congratulations on the wedding! I’ll forgive the absence in the circumstances . I’m glad you’re back with thus series though, it’s fantastic and always makes me smile. My husband regularly sleeps through all night time wakings, although he’s got better as the kids have got older, and is terrible on reduced sleep. Thankfully were pretty lucky and don’t get too much interrupted sleep these days but we are about to start potty training with the youngest and move her out of the cot into a proper bed so that could all change.
    Alana – Burnished Chaos would luv you to read…Words To Live By #3: Find The FunMy Profile

    1. The Missus The Missus says:

      Thanks Alana! Ross was so bad especially with Nip#1 – he didn’t wake at all. But likewise he is much better now but still needs his sleep. I love the phases of through the night sleeping which we get every now and again. They never last that long though as there always seems to be something going on with one of them. I remember the move from the cot into a bed ….the small person standing right beside your bed in the middle of the night – I can’t honestly say with hand on heart that Nip#1 scared the absolute bejaysus out of me a couple of times with that one. #mg

  12. Avatar Amie says:

    Haha I’m exactly the same when I’m tired! Except I do all the night time stuff on my own because the partner has to work the next day which is a bummer. At this point I can also fall asleep anywhere at anytime #MMBC

    1. Haha, yes, I am not alone!!! We should set up a club cause it is a gift 🙂 Bummer is right, sounds like you don’t get much of a break so? Thanks for reading Amie & commenting. Regards, Ross #MMBC

    2. The Missus The Missus says:

      It’s very tough when you’re doing it all yourself. You have to do what works best for you as a family. Now that I’m back working full time I would find it hard to be getting up a couple of times at night. I guess we are lucky that Ross is at home with the girls so he can do the night shift. A lot of families have both parents working and still have to do those night shifts with the kids. Definitely counting our blessings #MMBC

  13. Avatar Lisa says:

    I so enjoyed reading your post. It made me smile, a lot. I bottle fed both my girls so had help from the start, which was just as well because with both of them I had a couple of times I slept right through the night ; thankfully their Dad did not and tended to them. It’s ok, no harm done they are now 13 years and 11 years 😉 #MMBC

    1. If my post makes even one person smile, that makes my day so thank you Lisa for that. Sounds like your children have done just fine and I’ve learned how important it is to be the helping hand Mammy needs cause it’s a lot for just one person. Really appreciate your comments, chat soon, Ross. #MMBC

    2. The Missus The Missus says:

      I must admit there were days when I really wanted the kids to take a bottle just so I could get some rest but for the most part I enjoyed it. Sleeping is a luxury in the parenting world when your kids are small – as I keep telling Ross, this phase doesn’t last forever and we should cherish every second of it….not always easy when your eyes are hanging out of your head and you’ve still a ton of things to do #MMBC

  14. Haha! Sleeping with kids is certainly an adventure. Before you’re a parent, you laugh off all the “you’re never going to sleep well again” comments. But, I think it’s true, for Moms anyway, especially those of us who breastfeed. But, it’s worth the exhaustion! Thanks for your entertaining post!

    1. Jesus, it really is an adventure. If by the word you mean ‘getting kicked in the head, chest back, legs and every other body part, then yep it’s an adventure haha. I have no idea how The Missus breastfed for 16 months every single day & night while still being able to function daily. Being a SAHD for the last 7 months, I now fully get how important it is to get some time to yourself. But you are right and The Missus will back this up – it’s worth the exhaustion for sure, nicely put. So glad it entertained you, happy days! Regards, Ross #MMBC

    2. The Missus The Missus says:

      I was only having a conversation about this yesterday – people without kids are quick to comment, I know coz I was one of them but as a parent you know for sure that they have no idea what they are talking about! No matter how many nieces, nephews, godchildren they have….it’s not the same. Breastfeeding is enormously demanding but I must admit I loved every minute of it (well except for the cracked nipples phase) – I was very sad to stop it but it was time with both of them. I didn’t get to feed Nip#2 as long as Nip#1 but there were other factors involved. Ross benefited greatly from this though as he never had to do a night feed – well ok he did it for that short period when nip#2 actually took a bottle. It was all worth it and I wouldn’t have changed a thing

  15. This is great! We have 3 kids and when they were babies we used to actually argue/compete over who had had less sleep. Lee could sleep through anything and I’d wake seconds before one of them did expecting a cry! Now they are all much bigger I love my 8 hours sleep again. Sarah #mg
    Sarah Stockley would luv you to read…Backyard Cinema – The Lost WorldMy Profile

    1. Haha, very good (argue/compete over sleep!!). Sounds like Lee = Me & You = The Missus 🙂 On one hand the nips have ya wrecked but you know, on the other hand these days go by sooooooooo fast we need to learn how to love them and find the balance (easier said than done I know) because at least I know they are in their beds !!! Parenting = best & toughest challenge in the world – fact 🙂 Thanks so much for commenting Sarah, really appreciate it. Regards, Ross #mg

    2. The Missus The Missus says:

      I was always able to survive on very little sleep and in addition I am a very light sleeper. I used to wake before they would start crying too – it’s like a ‘spidey-sense’. Now I know Ross has the girls at night time I fall into a deep sleep – it took a while to get there and I do still wake up but not as quickly as I did before. Truth be known my job is very demanding so I’m tired for that, then I try to squeeze in quality time with the girls and exercise, planning, family, some blogging, website maintenance, friends…. it’s exhausting. It’s a juggling act but that said we wouldn’t change a thing…..welll except for a lotto win maybe ;o) #mg

  16. A great idea for a series, as men and women certainly are so different! I never thought about being pissed and being tired having the same effect! Alison #bigpinklink

    1. Thanks very much Alison. We are so glad we started it cause (i) it’s been great crack writing them & (ii) the public have really taken to it which is just class. We are 100% from different planets but that’s what makes us work so well (ironically!!!). Pissed / Exhausted comparison is so accurate for me anyway, not sure about others! Thanks so much for popping by, regards, Ross #bigpinklink

    2. The Missus The Missus says:

      Thanks Alison – we’ve a ton of ideas for this series, now we just need to find the time to write them. It’s great to get such positive feedback – it means we will definitely keep going. I can’t believe sometimes just how different we are at times and at other times we are just two peas in a pod. Mel #bigpinklink

  17. Ahh well, my daughter is 11 months old. I have never been able to sleep when she sleeps because I use that time to do the things I like doing. Having said that I can watch her sleep for hours wondering how did I make such a cute little thing but the moment she wakes up and I realise that I’m sleep deprived the other chain of thought starts 🙂 #mg

    1. Haha!Being a SAHD now I get that, genuinely. However when I was working, I’d always say to The Missus – ‘You’re wrecked tired, just go to sleep when the nips go asleep’ but she never would and I never understood it. Now I understand it. Having said that, if I’m wrecked tired and there is stuff to do (say, dishes or washing) I’ll go asleep BUT I have to be absolutely wrecked. If I’m just really tired, I’d won’t and I’ll get stuff done and I feel great for not going asleep. It’s a learning process!!! Thanks for reading/commenting. Regards, Ross. #mg

    2. The Missus The Missus says:

      As Ross said, he always told me ‘Just go to sleep, what are you doing?’ but I never listened and when Nip#2 came along, I just didn’t have the time. Our kids are 4yrs and 1yr and honestly I still can hardly believe we made these wonderful beautiful children. #mg

  18. oh I love that you both write and share the two sides. Aspen was boob obsessed, but due to my lack of milk (and big time mummy guilt over this) we topped her up with formula. So I would breast feed and then Steve would take over and find off with the bottle. It worked well. Steve was great with little sleep. He is an early to bed early to rise and I am the opposite and I NEED sleep! So he would go to bed whilst I settled Aspen who didn’t let me put her down until midnight most nights. Then Steve would do the over night feeds. After 3 babies who none of which were good night sleepers or even good day sleepers my hubby said NO MORE, he is apparently too old now to get up in the night and cheerfully tells me if we have another one it will all be on me lol #mg

    1. My God, whatever about not being good sleepers during the night OR during the but bloody hell Mackenzie, not good sleeping day AND night is bloody tough! Sounds like you guys had a good routine set in place to combat it and the fact the you needed less sleep that the other clearly helped that. I have a saying that for couples to really work well together, there has to be a ‘putter’ & a ‘leaver’. Two putters or two leavers are you’re gonna run into trouble. This could be a load of shite at the same time but for myself and The Missus it is 100% the case. I leave stuff down and she puts it away! Ying & Yang yeah? perfect harmony. Same applies to the sleep routine! So glad you like the format for the series, we’ve more on the way so make sure you’re subscribed to my site to make sure you don’t miss them – hint hint hehe. Lastly, so delighted this post was your most clicked on post, that makes us very happy indeed. Chat soon, Ross. #mg

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