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When Is A Child Too Old To Sleep With Parents?

children with parents in the same room

There are lots of different expert opinions on the subject matter and most importantly it varies between cultures to cultures.

Whereas the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) suggests that your baby is too old to co-sleep with you whenever you bring her home from the hospital and should sleep in her comfortable bassinet, some child experts believe it’s still okay to share bed even the age is 7 to 8 years and the parent and children are okay with that.

So, as you can see the matter has different opinions. I will give you a sum up of such expert’s opinion in this article. But first, let’s see why co-sleeping is happening so much among the societies.

Reasons for Co-Sleeping

There are several reasons why co-sleeping is still going on even though there are several warnings against it. Here are some:

  • It helps the mother breastfeeding the baby.
  • It increases the sleep time for both the mother and the baby.
  • The infant falls asleep much faster.
  • And more importantly, it develops a sense of closeness among parent and the baby.

The Hazards of Co-Sleeping With Infant

Various authorities and organizations like AAP, U.S. CPSC, and other non-governmental child organizations prohibit co-sleeping with the infant simply because it increases the chance of SIDS.

A study conducted by CPSC from 1990 to 1997 about the hazard of co-sleeping with the infant and reported to found around 515 infant death aged below 2 years. Also, AAP suggests the children should learn to sleep on their own, in their own baby cribs because of it developments self-esteem among them from the childhood.

But what about adult children?

There are lots of children aged between 8 to 10 years who still sleep with their parents regularly or still on the weekends. This is your prime concern, right? In fact, this is something that leads to destroying of marriage as well. Because such parents have limited private time and space to pass the intimate time.

Why Older Children Tend To Sleep With Parents?

Several studies have shown us that children today are less confident and self-dependent than the previous generations. There are several reasons behind that. The increased divorce rate, the pressure in the school, various other reasons.

These children tend to sleep with their parents to find reassurance and comfort. In general, there is nothing seriously wrong with it. But for the sake of you and your older children, you need to make her/him sleep in a separate room.

Steps to Follow To Stop Sleep With Parents

You need to take it seriously. For the sake of your own older children, follow the following steps so that your older children start to sleep in their own separate bedroom.

  • First, take mental preparations that your older children will resist it. Take every measure possible to make it understood that everyone needs their own separate space.
  • While you put your older child in their separate bedroom, gradually lessen the time you spend in the bedtime with him/her. The more you lessen the parental comfort gradually, the quicker she/he will learn to sleep in her own separate room.
  • Talk to your older child about the importance of sleeping separate room. Tell him/her it will increase the confidence and self-esteem. Speak frankly that you need to have better sleep alone in your own room as well.
  • At daytime, talk to your older child; listen to her anxiety or fears as well. That way, he/she will get confidence sleeping alone at night.
  • With your consistent trying and intervention, your older child will definitely have the habit of sleeping in her own bedroom.

Special Case Study

The following case study I found online and I think you might find it useful.sleeping baby with parent

A divorced mom of two older children (age of the son was 8 and the daughter was 9) used to sleep in the same bed. The mom went to talk to an expert about that issue. The mother herself used to feel uncomfortable sleeping with the two older children.

Well, the expert gave her multiple devices and I think you need to know about this if you are a single mom or father. If you are recently divorced, sleeping together with your older children is beneficial for both of you. It will heal you more quickly from the pain of the divorce. Also, the children will feel comfortable in such hard times.

Considering the age of the children, the expert suggested sleeping the mom in the middle of the bed keeping the two older children on both of her sides. He also suggested that, when the time comes to sleep separately, the boy should be separated first in the separate room.

Also, considering the age, all of the children and the mother should maintain privacy as much as possible like changing dresses in front of them.  And then when the time comes, both the children will start living in separate bedroom naturally, so stop worrying too much.

Summing Up

Apart from the fact that there is mixed opinion as to when is a child too old to sleep with parents, I would say as soon as possible. There is no fixed age, but the sooner the better. If your older children are still sleeping with you and you think your private life is not being hampered, don’t feel bad about it. The time will come naturally when your children will start living in a separate bedroom.