How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

Baby Sleep Positions: “The Dog House”


Baby Sleep Positions: The Dog House


Every dad—actually, every man—knows this sleep position. With or without the baby in bed, whether they’ve experienced it personally or not. The Dog House.

This one is basic to human beings and probably has been for all time. There are probably really uncomfortable slabs of rock in the floors of most caves around the world that cavemen have polished smooth with their asses, spending the night away from their upset cavewives and cavemammas.

“No man is an island” the saying goes. Yeah, we can be super dumb, but we’re smart enough to know that it’s not a good idea to sleep next to an exploding volcano. So, sometimes the couch is the raft a man needs to circumnavigate the evening while the lava cools.

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30 Responses to “Baby Sleep Positions: “The Dog House””

  1. Tad says:

    I had the doghouse so many times that we just got a second full-size bed. Now with two kids, we both have the doghouse. How is that fair?

    • charlie says:

      Ain’t fair. But you know what it is? A fare on the cab ride to insomnia.

    • andy says:

      Uh oh! Someone’s been grossly informed. Fairness is not a component of marriage or parenting. I’m not bagging at all, they are two of the most amazing honors and joys in life. But fairness? 😉

  2. Valerie says:

    Wonderful, funny, insightful, and very addictive blog!

  3. Craig says:

    hilarious, Tad, but sadly I know exactly what you mean. We’ve never slept the baby in bed with us, she’s always been in a bassinet or crib, but I am no stranger to the doghouse. Mine is conveniently located in a roll away sleeper couch in the home office. I use it so much I bought one of those 4 inch thick foam mattresses to make it more comfortable.

    • Tad says:

      Craig – yes, for our first, she’s wanted to be in the bed with us since she was born, but at almost 2 yrs old can spend most of the night by herself in her room now. Luckily our second can sleep in the crib all night, and has daddy’s superhuman ability to pass out anywhere.

      But more times than not, for reasons I find difficult to remember in the morning, I always seem to wake up in my daughter’s room, snuggled up, with an empty bottle still in my hand.

  4. I just use my kids bed… Sometimes I don’t even bother trying to sleep in my OWN bed.

    • andy says:

      I’m with you. Because I work super late, often I’ll get the request from the wife that if I got to bed after 3am (3 hours before they get up) that I shouldn’t even bother coming to sleep in the bed since I might wake the little one up.

  5. Natedad says:

    Really love the site. Just discovered it a week or so ago – I’ve been here everyday since – laughing out loud at your parenting / family commentary – good stuff – keep it coming please.

  6. Stephanie G. says:

    Right now I’M the one on the couch with the two month old and Jon is in our bed with our 18 month old. Simply because I refuse to risk one kid waking up the other and potentially losing more sleep…

  7. ChiMomWriter says:

    My daughter regularly asks in the morning “Is Daddy sleeping downstairs?”

    Yes. Yes, he is. But honestly, it stays dark down there, it’s cool and the kids are gated out. So I think he scores a win. I get all the teething and nightmares.

    • andy says:

      Yeah. I don’t love sleeping in places other than the bed, but I know that I’m the one who has it easy. I don’t complain, I’ve got a good perspective… and survival instinct.

  8. wagthedad says:

    I WISH I could go to the couch in the middle of the night. My problem is that I don’t wake up enough to get out of bed but I am more awake than asleep. We tried to fix this by buying two queen-sized beds and sticking them together, which almost works, only kids number one and two still insist on glueing themselves to either side of me when they wander in around 3 A.M.

    Maybe if I got thrown OUT of the bed? Hmm….

    • andy says:

      I hate that limbo sleep that isn’t really sleep. Two queens put together sounds cool, like a kid’s attraction at a carnival or something. Too bad it didn’t work. I know what you mean, I’ve perfected the art of sleeping with my body straight and right along the edge of the bed, so I’m only intruding on its surface area about 1 foot. The little lad still winds up plastered to my back.

  9. DaDa Rocks! says:

    I know that position all too well 😛

  10. Phil says:

    The facial expressions are spot-on. How the hell do women sleep with that face?

  11. Ed Smith says:

    Sleeping on the couch is like camping except there’s a television involved!

  12. William says:

    The best part about sleeping on the couch is “pretending” not to hear the baby in the middle of the night.

    • andy says:

      That’s possibly the truest statement I’ve heard in a month. Wait, lemme check… (checking) …Yep, truest statement in a month. 😉

  13. […] But then again, I’m pretty sure my untimely demise, after that weak joke, will involve sleeping on a couch and no blanket for a […]

  14. doghousereily says:

    I have no child, but I wind up in the doghouse often. I suddenly understand why men of the later generation went fishing. They always came back empty handed, but seemed to have gained something in peace of mind. I have taken up bird watching (also, unfortunately, a day time activity), and while I get the peace of mind by going out to the mountain to watch the most spectacular birds of prey, who seem (lucky for them) to know nothing of the doghouse, I am usually in the doghouse for having gone out so long without being able to complete a single item on the honey-do list. One of the other bird watchers calls his wife the Colonel, while his mother in law is the General. I think this is generally an accurate description of married life.

    • andy says:

      Now I want to take up bird watching. But all I see myself doing is sitting under a tree and zoning out on the lack of noise and pressure and electronically illuminated screens. But I’ll take retaining the remaining pieces of my mind, if I can’t achieve peace of mind. 😉

  15. Mel says:

    I get annoyed when my husband beats me to the couch, because it leaves me nowhere to escape to, I can’t sleep in the 3yo’s bed, because he’s usually in our bed because his big brother got scared in the top bunk and got in the bottom with him

  16. LAMR says:

    My husband has never been sent to the couch. I would leave if I didn’t want to sleep near him or I’d move myself and the baby if the kid was up.

  17. Turtle-Dove says:

    Agreed LAMR, especially because he works and I stay at home with Straubs, but whenever I’m mad enough to not sleep with he always gives me a bit then he comes out and we talk and then go to bed together ^-^

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