Sleepovers: Do You Allow Them?

pillowsSleepovers with friends can be the most memorable times in a child's life, yet many parents are terrified to allow their kid to go to them, or even to host another child. The first issue is that in order to allow your child to spend the night somewhere else, you have to trust the parents of his friend. It doesn't help that as parents we've all become scared to death by reports of child molesters and other crazies lurking among us.


But when your child is the right age (something only you can decide) sleepovers can have many benefits. In a parenting article I discovered, "The Right Age for a Sleepover," author Ronit Baras explains the advantages of sleepovers. Some highlights...

  • A sleepover requires flexibility. Kids are forced to leave their comfort zone and take themselves into new territory, into the unknown. With Mom and Dad knowing the host family, a sleepover can teach the kids that they can take that risk and survive it.
  • The younger the kids are, the more opportunities they need to stay away from their parents and still feel safe. Sleepovers are good opportunities enhance their social skills and independence. They go into a new house with a different set of rules and boundaries and they must learn to sense what those are and to get along - and most of the time they do.
  • Inviting friends to sleepover can teach your kids to share their toys, their bed and even their mom and dad’s attention.
  • When parents allow their kids to sleepover at friends’ houses, they actually let go of some control that they have over their children’s life. This is not an easy task and the younger the kids, the harder it is to let go. In many ways, a kid’s sleepover is a chance for parents to develop emotionally too

So what do you say? Can she sleep over at her friend's now?

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