At what age should opposite-gender siblings no longer share a bed/bedroom? - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 21 Old 04-18-2011, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
Llyra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: right here
Posts: 9,450
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My boy/girl twins each have their own bed, but lots of nights (like tonight) they wind up sleeping together in DS's bed. I think it's adorable, and they are so happy, but I happened to mention it the other day at a family do, and one of my cousins said she thought it was weird, and that once kids get to get around three, it's not appropriate anymore. And I was like yikes.gif. I mean, they're FOUR. They're barely over being babies.

So I totally get that it's perfectly fine for them to be together, now. But it got me thinking, and DH and I were talking, about when it's time to separate them, and I don't know what I think.

So I guess I'm wondering-- obviously it depends on the kids, of course, and the situation, but generally speaking, when do you think opposite-gender siblings should stop sharing a bed? What about sharing a room?

me knit.gif, he bikenew.gif, my three reading.gif, sleepytime.gif, and fairy.gif-- and the one we lost angel2.gif
Llyra is offline  
#2 of 21 Old 04-18-2011, 05:17 PM
 
frugalmum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My 14 yr old and 12 yr old opposite gender siblings still share a room and refuse to separate.  It is a very big room though-- it was formerly a living room that we now use as a bedroom.  So it is two or three times the size of a normal bedroom.  They don't get dressed in there, they get dressed privately in one of the bathrooms.  My son is extremely introverted so quite frankly I am glad he is sharing a room with his sister, otherwise I'm not sure he would ever talk to anyone!

frugalmum is offline  
#3 of 21 Old 04-18-2011, 06:00 PM
 
treeoflife3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: tennessee/kentucky
Posts: 1,513
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I had a boyfriend in high school who shared a bedroom with his sister til she moved out (they were only a couple years apart.)  There was only one available bedroom in their mom's apartment besides mom's room so it was really the only option for them.  They didn't mind it though... they just had a divider to give separate spaces within the room and changed elsewhere.

 

Personally, I don't think it is that weird, especially if there isn't much space for everyone to have their own room.  Not everyone can afford a three bedroom home to ensure each kid gets their own room because of gender and not everyone wants to share a room with one of their kids to split the different genders up.

 

I DEFINITELY don't think 4 is weird.  I was still taking baths with my brother when he was 5 and I was 9.  It wasn't weird at all... he felt more comfortable taking a bath if I was in with him.

treeoflife3 is offline  
#4 of 21 Old 04-18-2011, 08:54 PM
 
hakeber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Bogota, Colombia
Posts: 3,817
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Your friend is being weird.

 

4? My DH shared a room with his sister who is 4 years older than him until she was 14 when she demanded not having to share a room with her 10 year old brother and all his toys...they had a guest room so it worked out. But I also had friends in highschool who were twins (boy and girl) and they shared a bedroom until they moved out to go to college, and they both sometimes slept in the same bed together falling asleep talking about stuff.  They were best friends.  There wasn't anything sexual about it, so I don't see the big deal. 

 

I think some people have their own issues.  Don't put too much stock in it.

 

I say to your friend: 4?  For goodness sake.  Let them be kids!

 

ETA: I would say generally I would think they should have their own beds by the time they hit puberty (what with wet dreams and all that) but don't be surprised if they sometimes fall asleep talking at night in the same bed...they shared a womb, it's likely they will always feel safest next to each other.

BabyBearsMummy likes this.

Rebekah - mom to Ben 03/05 and Emily 01/10, a peace educator, and a veg*n and wife to Jamie.
hakeber is offline  
#5 of 21 Old 04-19-2011, 06:16 AM
 
mom2happy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 992
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I shared a room till I was 10 with my sister and two brothers. It was crowed, but we were poor.

We were fine. There was nothing weird about it for us.

My girl and boy took baths together until 5 and 7 yrs old. They always wanted to. They were so used to seeing each other naked that there was nothing abnormal about it. DD turned 8 and this year she decided she wants more room in the bath, so we do seperate baths.

When ever they want, they sleep together. It is wonderful when siblings want to be together. I would never take that away.

Some people are afraid of strange things.

mom2happy is offline  
#6 of 21 Old 04-19-2011, 07:26 AM
 
puddle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 910
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post

So I guess I'm wondering-- obviously it depends on the kids, of course, and the situation, but generally speaking, when do you think opposite-gender siblings should stop sharing a bed? What about sharing a room?



Whenever  either of them feels uncomfortable with it, then I think it's time to try to accommodate their needs if possible.  If they're both fine with it, then who cares?  I think the euphemism "sleep with" to refer to sex has given people the bizarre idea that sleeping and sex are related.

puddle is offline  
#7 of 21 Old 04-19-2011, 05:23 PM
 
redpajama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
Posts: 1,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My oldest two are 6 and 4 (boy and girl, respectively) and they still share a bed.  They each have their own bed, so it's not as if they don't have the option of sleeping separately, but they almost never choose to sleep apart.  shrug.gif

redpajama is offline  
#8 of 21 Old 04-20-2011, 03:22 PM
 
dawncayden's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Vancouver BC Canada
Posts: 4,343
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I'd say once one of them hits puberty I'd start talking to them about when they want to seperate. They might not want to. They might both feel comfortable all through being teens, and thats fine. I'd leave it in their hands.


75% Crunchy 25% Smooth
Raising 2 peanuts. #3 due in June bellyhair.gif

dawncayden is offline  
#9 of 21 Old 04-21-2011, 09:22 AM
 
4Marmalade's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,084
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My boy/girl twins are almost 3 and they sleep in the same bed.  My older dc's are boy/girl and they are 8-1/2 and almost 6 and they have sleepovers in each other's rooms all the time.  Doesn't phase me at all.  I am pretty confident they will all let us know what they want/need as they grow older and we'll deal with it then.    


Karen - spouse to dh for 11 years, mama to ds (Nov '02), dd (May '05) and ds and dd (Jun '08)

4Marmalade is offline  
#10 of 21 Old 04-21-2011, 12:54 PM
 
pianojazzgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Montreal
Posts: 4,335
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My dc are 6 and 3 and they each have their own rooms, but most nights they choose to sleep in the same bed.  I can't see any problem with that!


 


Kate, mom to 7 year old Djuna and 4 yr old Alden. Missing our good friend Hal the cat who died June 2, 2010

pianojazzgirl is offline  
#11 of 21 Old 04-29-2011, 03:23 PM
 
Polliwog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 4,062
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18 Post(s)

My DS is almost seven and my DD is four. They happily share a room. I can't have an opposite gendered foster child share a room with my DS but for my own kids it's fine. They love sharing a room and will do so for the forseeable future.


 

Polliwog is online now  
#12 of 21 Old 04-29-2011, 03:30 PM
 
APToddlerMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 2,172
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Your cousin is the weird one.  I wouldn't separate them until they express an interest in being separated.  This can be really cultural and there are plenty of places where there is no choice but for the whole family to sleep together.  They are babies.  I doubt they are planning on getting busy.

APToddlerMama is offline  
#13 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 12:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
Llyra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: right here
Posts: 9,450
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by APToddlerMama View Post

Your cousin is the weird one.  I wouldn't separate them until they express an interest in being separated.  This can be really cultural and there are plenty of places where there is no choice but for the whole family to sleep together.  They are babies.  I doubt they are planning on getting busy.


I'm thinking, from what my cousin was saying, that her concern was less that something inappropriate might be happening between the children, which of course is absurd, but that it would set off alarm bells for people like preschool teachers, and possibly lead to trouble with CPS.

me knit.gif, he bikenew.gif, my three reading.gif, sleepytime.gif, and fairy.gif-- and the one we lost angel2.gif
Llyra is offline  
#14 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 12:17 PM
 
eclipse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Mexico
Posts: 7,867
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have an almost 8 yo girl and a 5 yo boy who share a room and often end up in the same bed. I don't have any plans to separate them unless one or the other seems to be uncomfortable with it. DD has started wanting to change in private, but she still doesn't mind taking a bath with him lol.gif
eclipse is offline  
#15 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 12:32 PM
 
lkvosu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 116
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

 

 

Quote:

I'm thinking, from what my cousin was saying, that her concern was less that something inappropriate might be happening between the children, which of course is absurd, but that it would set off alarm bells for people like preschool teachers, and possibly lead to trouble with CPS.  

 

I think she has a point. As silly as it may seem to us, our culture does have hang ups about this sort of thing. In my state there are laws that each child must have their own bed from the time they're born, and children must have a seperate bedroom from adults (but may share with each other).  It most certainly could be red flag to someone with an issue about it or if taken out of context.  I think I'd be most comfortable if each child had their own bed so they were able to choose where they wanted to sleep, whether together or alone. It's something to think about, but if you and your children are happy with your current arrangement, I wouldn't worry too much about it. PP was right, this stuff is all cultural anyway. If we were to tell this "seperate bed, seperate room" business to someone living on the prairie in a one room mud hut 150 years ago, they'd laugh their head off.


SAHM to Cameron James (b. 10/21/10) and wife to my adorable husband. treehugger.gif
lkvosu is offline  
#16 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 12:32 PM
 
APToddlerMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 2,172
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by APToddlerMama View Post

Your cousin is the weird one.  I wouldn't separate them until they express an interest in being separated.  This can be really cultural and there are plenty of places where there is no choice but for the whole family to sleep together.  They are babies.  I doubt they are planning on getting busy.




I'm thinking, from what my cousin was saying, that her concern was less that something inappropriate might be happening between the children, which of course is absurd, but that it would set off alarm bells for people like preschool teachers, and possibly lead to trouble with CPS.


Well, okay I guess a lot of people are afraid of CPS and I understand that.  As a social worker though, foster care guidelines at least in my state allow opposite sex non-related children to share a bedroom (and I cannot recall for sure but I think double bed) through age 6.  There is absolutely no rule/regulation about opposite sex related siblings in the family who are not foster children.   

APToddlerMama is offline  
#17 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 01:31 PM
 
dawncayden's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Vancouver BC Canada
Posts: 4,343
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

There's a law that says 'from birth a child must be in own bed and own room'? Really? Are you sure? That sounds so crazy....How can there actually be a law...

maybe a guideline? and not an actual law?

 

D
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lkvosu View Post

 

 

 

I think she has a point. As silly as it may seem to us, our culture does have hang ups about this sort of thing. In my state there are laws that each child must have their own bed from the time they're born, and children must have a seperate bedroom from adults (but may share with each other).  It most certainly could be red flag to someone with an issue about it or if taken out of context.  I think I'd be most comfortable if each child had their own bed so they were able to choose where they wanted to sleep, whether together or alone. It's something to think about, but if you and your children are happy with your current arrangement, I wouldn't worry too much about it. PP was right, this stuff is all cultural anyway. If we were to tell this "seperate bed, seperate room" business to someone living on the prairie in a one room mud hut 150 years ago, they'd laugh their head off.



 


75% Crunchy 25% Smooth
Raising 2 peanuts. #3 due in June bellyhair.gif

dawncayden is offline  
#18 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 09:02 PM
 
lkvosu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 116
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

 

Quote:

There's a law that says 'from birth a child must be in own bed and own room'? Really? Are you sure? That sounds so crazy....How can there actually be a law...

maybe a guideline? and not an actual law?

 

D
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lkvosu View Post

 

 

 

I think she has a point. As silly as it may seem to us, our culture does have hang ups about this sort of thing. In my state there are laws that each child must have their own bed from the time they're born, and children must have a seperate bedroom from adults (but may share with each other).  It most certainly could be red flag to someone with an issue about it or if taken out of context.  I think I'd be most comfortable if each child had their own bed so they were able to choose where they wanted to sleep, whether together or alone. It's something to think about, but if you and your children are happy with your current arrangement, I wouldn't worry too much about it. PP was right, this stuff is all cultural anyway. If we were to tell this "seperate bed, seperate room" business to someone living on the prairie in a one room mud hut 150 years ago, they'd laugh their head off.



 

From what I understand, the law doesn't specify that the children must sleep in their own beds, only that they must have their own beds. I might be using the terms "law" and "guideline" interchangeably, but I know you can be cited for it by DHS (our state's version of child services), so whatever that means. About the own room part, I said (or at least meant to say) that children CAN share a room with each other, just not with adults as per DHS. The children in any given household must have a seperate sleeping quaters from the adults of the household. I think the law/guideline is there to protect children from undesireable or potentially harmful situations in which parents might ignore their child's developmental needs for privacy and/or to protect them from sexual abuse. I doubt it's commonly applied to situations like the OP is describing or to an infant cosleeping, although I wouldn't be shocked if they looked into something like that because of a compliant by a ill-informed, but probably well-meaning, preschool teacher. Our culture is so funny about this sleep business!


SAHM to Cameron James (b. 10/21/10) and wife to my adorable husband. treehugger.gif
lkvosu is offline  
#19 of 21 Old 04-30-2011, 09:55 PM
 
dawncayden's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Vancouver BC Canada
Posts: 4,343
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I would just imagine that if there were sexual abuse going on in a household it would be happening whether a child has their own room or not. 

 

Anyway, OP, I think it's great to share a smaller dwelling. RV's, boats, small apartments, it really brings a family closer together.


75% Crunchy 25% Smooth
Raising 2 peanuts. #3 due in June bellyhair.gif

dawncayden is offline  
#20 of 21 Old 05-01-2011, 06:44 PM
 
lkvosu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 116
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I agree dawncayden, but I imagane that's their logic behind the rule. Honestly, It's pretty ridiculous to think that children are less likey to be sexually abused simply because they have their own rooms. I don't know this for sure, but I'm willing to bet that the vast majority of abuse cases happen to children who do in fact have their own sleeping space. 

 

OP, sorry to go off on a tangent. I think you're situation is completely harmless and I'm sure anyone, CPS or otherwise, who took even 5 seconds to think about it would come to the same conclusion.


SAHM to Cameron James (b. 10/21/10) and wife to my adorable husband. treehugger.gif
lkvosu is offline  
#21 of 21 Old 05-03-2011, 01:28 PM
 
les_oiseau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 250
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


This is what I was going to say.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by puddle View Post





Whenever  either of them feels uncomfortable with it, then I think it's time to try to accommodate their needs if possible. 

les_oiseau is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off