Sibling Room Sharing

Sherri - posted on 01/19/2012 ( 9 moms have responded )




Sibling Room Sharing

A Parent’s Dream or Nightmare?

by: Julie Cole

When we were looking to buy a bigger house two years ago, there were a few things that topped the “requirement” list—a big mudroom, green space behind the house, a court and an eating area that we could fit in. Many were surprised that “more bedrooms” did not make the list. The conversation came up again recently when I mentioned on Facebook that Cousin Matthew was staying in the spare room of our house for a few weeks. Spare room? Six kids and four bedrooms—how could there possibly be a spare room? Well, there is!

My love of kiddo room-sharing goes back to the days when my parents also had an empty bedroom because my sisters and I all bunked in together. No one wanted to miss out on the late-night giggles and sleepy chats in the dark. The first time I had my own bedroom was when I was 20 years old and in second year university.

My kids began their room-sharing early. My daughter was 4 months old when she moved in with big brother, who’s 15 months older. We have spent the better part of the last 12 years with two cribs in our house, regularly with both in one room.

The room-sharing benefits are many—those late-night giggles and chats, hearing the big kids read to the little ones ‘til they’re asleep, knowing each has someone close by to provide protection from the boogeyman or next zombie apocalypse. I also like that it forces us to be efficient with space. If I went crazy buying kiddo clothes, we’d be featured on the next episode of “Hoarders.”

Some people think kids need a lot of privacy, but I’m not exactly sure what for. There are plenty of places one can go to be alone and have quiet time. Perhaps I’ll get more requests for solo bedroom space as they get older, but I’m not banking on it. With Cousin Matthew staying in the spare room, each kid was taking turns bunking in with him. Two of them anxiously awaited their turn and then bailed after five minutes to go back to their own rooms, claiming “homesickness” for their regular sibling companions.

But don’t think that room-sharing is all the land of milk and honey. There are some shenanigans that can drive a mama wild. For me, having to deal with these is a small trade-off.

What are your thoughts on room-sharing? Have you given it a try yet? Has it been a dream or an absolute nightmare?

I love love love her view and philosophy on this topic. What are your thoughts? I am bringing this up due to some other similar threads as of late.


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Katherine - posted on 02/01/2012





You reminded me of those who dont have the room to have their kids in different rooms. WHen you are left with no choice but to have all your kids share a rooom then it is what it is.

Katherine - posted on 02/01/2012




my older girls had their own room until it was time for baby sister to be moved into a room and I asked my girls who wanted to share a room with the baby and they both wanted to. So we moved all three girls into the lagest of the bedrooms and I dont know long this will last. I have no problem with siblings sharing rooms as long as its the same sex. My brothers shared a room until they couldnt any longer and I shared a room with my sister until we couldnt any longer and all four us went back to having our own rooms.

Stifler's - posted on 01/30/2012




My kids are bad enough sleepers in their own room. I can't even imagine the nights of them sleeping in the same room. I like to actually sleep at night.

Ania - posted on 01/29/2012




I shared room with my sister my whole life. There was a moment when it was too much, but we survived :) i don't think it made us closer though...maybe the opposite, especially in tenage years. Now of course it is a diferent story. My kids boy and girl will have to share the room now...and everyone is raisin eyebrows because it is a boy and a girl. I still believe they can share the room until they hit puberty. Maybe at that point we will have enough money to give them separate rooms :)

Emma - posted on 01/28/2012




My kids have there own rooms, but a couple of weeks ago, decided they wanted to share a room, So now they share, and my daughters old room has become there play room.

Katherine - posted on 01/26/2012




I'm one of 3 girls (my sisters are 9 and 10 years older then me).

My parents never expected us to share (since I was in the world) and did an addition to the house when I was really little so that we would all have our own rooms, plus 2 guest rooms.

Now that I am a mom with one little boy and we are thinking about having another in a year or so we are thinking of our options in the house we just purchased.

We have 2 bedrooms and an office (could be used as a bedroom but it has a sliding glass door - I REFUSE to put a baby or our son in here, let alone use it as anything other then an office).

We also refuse to put our children together in bedrooms, to us they need their own space, to get away from their sibilings, from us, from anything and everything, they also need space that they can go to rest, and actually get a good nights sleep. We feel that when you put siblings together the shnanigains that happen don't allow children to get the proper amount of rest required

Jenna - posted on 01/25/2012




Well, right now we own a four-bedroom house. We have five children. We also have a guest room. Our four older kids (ages 8, 7, 5 and 4, three boys and one girl) all share one huge bedroom that used to be the playroom. The baby (10 months) has his own room for now. The extra room is the guest room. When the baby gets old enough to be out of his crib, sometime in the next year or so, we will put him in the bottom bunk where our 4-year-old daughter currently is and move her to her own room at that time.

I think that room-sharing is beneficial. I was one of six kids, the only girl with five brothers. I shared a room with my little brothers until I was eight. Then I always had my own room. I think that not having to share after that really affected me for later in life. I never was able to get along with one roommate in college and by my third year, I finally found a place where I could have my own room and I paid nearly twice as much for it. I've been married nearly 11 years and I still sleep better when I don't have anyone in my room. My husband always shared a room and he sleeps better with someone in the room. It's a constant source of conflict in our marriage. I wish that I had shared a room and gotten used to having someone else around just so the transition to marriage wouldn't have been so hard.

For obvious reasons, my parents felt it best I had my own room and I can understand that, being the only girl with five brothers, all close in age. But I do wish that I'd had a sibling (sister) that I could have shared with.

And yes, I know it can be a pain to deal with sometimes, but that's just a fact of life--having to learn to get along with other people.

ETA: Also, I think that sharing a room can help build really strong bonds between siblings. I love it when I go upstairs after they've been put to bed and hear them whispering to each other. It usually only lasts about 15 minutes before they start falling asleep, but I know they are having some great bonding moments.

Celeste - posted on 01/24/2012




I don't have much of a choice right now. We have a 3 bedroom house. My 9 year old daughter has her own room and my 5 year old twin boys share a room.

Sometimes I wish the boys had their own room because they can keep each other from going to sleep and wake each other up. The boys like to go in my bed around 3 am and then sleep til I wake them up for school. One will wake the other and say "Let's go to mama's bed!!" LOL

And yeah, total shenanigans LOL

[deleted account]

I grew up in a house with 2 bedrooms and 3 kids. My sister and I shared a room and we actually slept in the same bed too. When my brother came along his crib was in our room. I loved it (except for the few occasions that my lil bro woke up crying). My parents built on to our old farm house, first expanding their room. So my brother moved into their room on a twin bed. Then they added two more bedrooms to the back of the house which my sister and I moved into when we were 9 and 11. My brother got our old room. At that age I was ready to have my own space, but I did enjoy it when we were younger. Unless we move we plan on putting our two girls in the same room eventually. I co-sleep with the baby right now. My toddler's room is huge. It's way bigger than the master so they will have plenty of room to share. The other bedroom is pretty small and we use it as a guest room. So I don't have experience as a parent yet, but as a kid I loved it.

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