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LDavy
LDavy asks:
Q:

How old is old enough for a sleepover?

My friend just asked me when it's the right age for a child to sleepover at a friend's house.  I didn't know what to say.  I remember going to sleepovers at the end of elementary school, but I don't remember when I started attending.  I ended up telling her that if she trusts the other parents, and her child wants to go, I don't think there's a problem.  Was I right? Should parents set an age limit on sleepovers (since they often don't know what happens and they'll just have to trust their child's judgment) or should it be allowed as soon as the child's ready?
In Topics: Family fun / holiday celebrations
> 60 days ago

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ronald
ronald writes:
Excellent topic. My wife and I have been conversative on sleepovers. Although it is very popular in our area, we have to know the parents very very well to consent to a sleepover.<br />
> 60 days ago

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jennjenmeggers
jennjenmegg... writes:
Well, Good Question. My 9 year old has had a few sleep overs allready. I think its when you feel your child is ready. And if you know the sisutation the child will be in? i mean my kid only stays where i know the parents.... but to each there own...
> 60 days ago

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kat_eden
kat_eden , Parent writes:
Hi LDavy,

This really is a great question.  Unfortunately you and your friend are right to have concerns.  Sleepovers can be really fun for kids and can be a great way for them to spread their wings a little, but there are also some real risks to consider.  

I think decision about "when?" is less important that the decision of "who with?"  In order for the child to really have fun you want her to be old enough to feel comfortable falling - and staying - asleep in another house which happens for most kids around 5 or 6.

But "who with" is a much bigger deal.  I would only consider letting my boys go on a sleepover with a family that I know very well.  Not just well enough to trust that they'll take good care of my children, but well enough to have a really hard conversation with.  For example, I think it's important to talk to the host parents about your expectations about video games, movies, and TV the kids will watch at your house.  You should find out whether or not there are weapons in the house and how they're locked if they're there.  You should ask whether or not the family plans to have other adults or teenagers in the home while your child is there (and reschedule the sleepover if they're planning to).  You should confirm that the parents will be supervising the whole time (not teenaged kids).  

Just because you know, trust, and even like the host parents, you can't assume that they'll handle each of these issues in the same way you do.  You owe it to your child to find out explicitly.

In terms of getting the child ready for the sleepover, I found it helps to let them choose one "lovey" to take (for younger kids obviously) and to have a picture of the family in their bag in case they start feeling homesick.  It's also important for her to know that you'll come pick them up in the night if she needs you to - just knowing she doesn't have to stay will probably ensure that she will.

Let us know what your friend decides!

Kat
Education.com Community Team
> 60 days ago

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Jorkeno
Jorkeno writes:
I think its when you feel that your child is already ready. It is important for you to know the objectives why your child needs to over night, if these reasons made you comfortable and safe for your  children, then there's no reason to say no! trust on them.  Children today have their own consciousness and conscience in doing things for their own good.  so we just have to support them and stay intact as a family.
> 60 days ago

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Jorkeno
Jorkeno writes:
I think the right time for the children to have sleepover is when they are ready.  If you can see with his actions that he is quite responsible enough to have certain actions for himself.  And the fact now a days is that children do know what will be the effects of their action.
> 60 days ago

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Mrs.Star
Mrs.Star writes:
I think they should be 10 years old & up. And you should know the persons parents for a long time.And trust your child and their friends guardians.
> 60 days ago

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Kumar1
Kumar1 writes:
it really up to ur parnets to trust u 2 not do nottin bad when u do go sleep over
> 60 days ago

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monkey911
monkey911 writes:
4,714 people said a kid should be 10-13 for their first sleep over
> 60 days ago

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ptrubs
ptrubs writes:
any age is fine, although probably best if your kid is outta nappies.  You can base your decision on whether _their_ kids seem well adjusted.  Your kid is going to experience different things while on the sleep over (part of the reason you do it, right?)  So if they get to play video games or stay up a bit later, or eat different food, or sleep in a tent, its good for them to experience the differences in the world - and how other people navigate it...
> 60 days ago

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medinaloftis
medinaloftis writes:
My daughter is 4 and stays the night at the neighbors who has a 4 and 2 yr old is this to young for "sleepovers"? My husband says 8 no more sleepovers
> 60 days ago

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Charlotte101
Charlotte101 writes:
I have a daughter who is nine now but started having sleepovers in 3rd grade but i have to know the parents and the child and they have to know me to
> 60 days ago

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