Teenage siblings sharing a room?

Naomi - posted on 02/27/2013 ( 9 moms have responded )

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We have 5 kids, a 20, 19, 10, 7, and 10 months. The 10 and 7 year old share a room they are both boys. The 20(girl) and 19(boy) are my stepchildren and they have there own rooms. My 10 month old is in the room with me and my husband. The problem I am having is we need to downsize majorly. We have alot of debt, no savings, and $1580.00 per monh rent and $200-$500 electricity bill every month. My husband makes good money but we just cant do it. My roadblock is that I can only find 3 bedroom apts that are within price range. We cannot move to another house because we wont save in utilities and we cant afford a huge deposit. I am ok with the fact that we have to give up stuff but we are stuck with the two older siblings sharing rooms. The 20 yearold is disabled and she has autism, she will never leave us and the 19 year old...well we are working on his motivation. Is it wrong for them to share ? Or should I give the 3 boys the master bedroom to share ? We have to make a change or we are never going to get out of debt and save money. Any Ideas ?

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Liz - posted on 02/27/2013

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You're in a tricky situation, but I would strongly counsel you against putting your two older children in a shared room if your daughter has autism and is disabled. Sharing with a 19 year old boy could be extremely stressful for her.

If the 19 year old cannot find work and contribute to keeping you all in a bigger house so that he can keep his own room, then I am not sure what else you can do but put your daughter in her own room, you and your husband in another and all the rest of the kids in the biggest room. That's still not ideal.

Another option might be for the 19 year old to lose his room and sleep on the couch. Harsh, but might help his motivation...

Amy - posted on 02/27/2013

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A 19 year old who has to sleep on the couch or share a room with two other siblings might be the very motivation he needs to find his way in the world. If not in the world maybe out of the house at least. I would leave the 19 year old in her own room.

Gail - posted on 03/04/2013

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I would not put my 20 yr old disabled daughter in the same room with my 19 yr old son.

I STRONGLY third the suggestion that he can share a room with his brothers or sleep on the couch.

Tammy - posted on 03/09/2013

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I think you should decide how your family would be most comfortable.
Here is my story about my childhood living arrangements:
My family had relocated from the Westcoast to the Midwest. I have a brother and a sister (we were 8, 11 and 14 at the time ) and my parents needed to save money until they got established and able to buy a place again. We lived in a small two bedroom, two bath apartment for about six months. My brother and sister and I got the master bedroom and we had a blast! Despite our gender and age differences,we were fine with it, probably because, we got a long so well at the time and also because it was something very new to us (previously us girls shared a room and my brother had his own). Our parents got the small bedroom. Then we moved to a 3-bedroom townhouse for 3 years. I was the oldest and somehow I managed to convince my parents to let me have my own room; it was probably the greatest sell job I had ever done in my life! LOL The two younger ones got to pick out the bunk bed of their dreams. My parents were finally able to buy a 4 bedroom house and strangely, within the year, my brother and sister and I drifted apart. We have never been as close as we were when we lived in those small places.

Dove - posted on 03/06/2013

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I'm in agreement with pretty much everyone. Stick the 19 year old in with the younger boys. If he doesn't like it... he can find a way to move out. When a family is having financial trouble everyone makes sacrifices for the good of the whole. Good luck finding a good, cheap place!

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Dove - posted on 03/06/2013

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Although I will add.... you may end up with some trouble renting a 3 bedroom place. I don't know about everywhere, but some places will not rent to you unless the place has enough bedrooms to have only 2 people per room... and no opposite sex siblings sharing.

I didn't really believe this as I thought it was only a county housing type of rule, but my counselor works with a family who is homeless right now simply for the fact that they can't afford a rental that has adequate bedrooms and no one will rent to them with lesser bedrooms in their price range.

Liv - posted on 03/06/2013

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Definitely a tough situation. I am with the others that you should have the 3 boys in a room. Give your 20 year old daughter the smallest room for herself. And you, hubby and baby take a room.

This will definitely help your 19 year old understand sacrifice and growing up.

But your daughter does need her own space.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 03/05/2013

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Either your 3 boys share a room, you and hubby have a room, and your daughter gets her own room, or you keep the 2 younger together, and the two older separate, and you and your husband make the sacrifice and sleep in the front room.

It is NEVER OK to allow an adult male to share a room with an autistic female, sister or not. Respect their privacy. I also notice that you did not offer the option of having the three boys share, and you don't refer to all of the kids as your kids, indicating to me that you've not fully accepted "his" kids into "your" full family. So, look at it this way: If the situation were reversed, and your 10 & 7 year olds were opposite sex siblings, living with their biological father, and he were asking the same question, how would you respond? You'd probably tell him to make the sacrifice and let the kids have separate rooms.

I respect the fact that you recognize the need to get on your feet, but don't penalize the kids for situations that they did not ask to be put into.

Ashley - posted on 03/05/2013

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A 3 bedroom? u hubby & baby get a room 19 10 & 7 yr old get a room & 20 yr old get a room!

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