Thursday, September 07, 2006

To Sleepover or Not To Sleepover

I'm just wondering what other mom's opinions are on sleepovers. We are about to be bombarded with sleepover invitations. I feel like in this day and age, it's kind of scary to send your kid off somewhere for more than 12 hours. Most of the trouble I got into when I was younger was when I was "sleeping" over at a friend's house. But, I don't want my kids to be the freaks that can't do them either. Do you say yes to some and continually decline offers from their friends you don't know as well, or that your not quite sure about the parents?

Please share your insights with me!


Jules said...

I"ve thought about this alot as well. I've concluded that my kids can have their friends at our house, but can't stay over at someone else's. For a slumber party, I would let them go to the party, but pick them up at a late enough hour that they can have the fun without encountering the trouble.
Let me know what conclusion you come to.

Thoroughly Mormon Millie said...

My kids have friends whose family does "late nights." They have the same concerns and don't let their kids go anywhere else to sleep, or have friends sleep over. But they will invite friends over till around 10:30 PM - the mom says, nothing good happens after that time anyway. I think this will be our solution too. That way, the other families don't think, "Oh, you can have my kid come over, but you don't trust me with YOUR kid?"

It's funny you should mention this - I was just reading DYM's post about child care at her gym and abuse/molestation. More than anything, not letting your child spend the night anywhere else or having anyone else's kids sleep at your house cuts down on anything happening to your child AND no accusations can be made toward any of your family members. Hey, it happens.

Janice J said...

I agree with Jules adn throughly mormon millie. Let them go and pick them up at bedtime. In this modern day and age, we can't be too careful. In my house (but I will admit, my kids are young), the answer is always--NO!

abc momma said...

We do the "late night" thing. If Ant is invited someplace, we tell the parents that we will be picking him up around bedtime. We haven't had a problem yet.

No Cool Story said...

Hmmm, "to be dangerous" or to be "The freak".

Now that my kids are older, I let them spend the night at people's homes, not so much when they were young. This is how I do it:
*A molester can be anyone, I know.

-They only have 2-3 friends they can sleepover at.
-I have talked to the parents (lots & lots & lots)
-I have investigated what kind of house they run (guns?, smoking?, drinking?, late night craziness?, bad movies?, relaxed on immorality?)
-Dh and I have had countless talks about safety, since they were very little.
-I keep in contact with the parents, just like I tell them they can call me at any time of the day.
-They know they can call us at any time, for any reason whatsoever. They have their own cell phones.
-If ever, I was to call them, and they were not were they were supposed to be...let's just say you don't want to know, it would be a bad bad thing for them. Forever.

You can never be to careful. It's a tricky thing. I decline most invitations to spend the night.
That's my insight :D

helen said...

We never let our girls stay over with anyone unless we know the parents VERY VERY well! Generally we pick the girls up from "sleepovers" at 11:00 and they come home to do the sleeping! You are right to be cautious....just this week the husband of a woman in our ward was accused of "inappropriately touching" a child at a sleep-over birthday party in their home. I have no idea if the accusation is true but just the charge will undoubtedly change the lives of everyone involved. Always better to err on the side of safety and what fun can you have while "asleep" anyway?

Paulette said...

I agree with Jules, I never let my children do sleep overs. You just never know and I have heard to many horror stories. I just could not risk it.
I let my kids have friends over, and I was just honest to other parents that I was not comfortable.
I guess it is a personal choice. It is a whole different world now. I too would let our kids go to parties and pick them up at bed time.

sketchy said...

LOL, my kids think "sleepovers" mean when they get to drag a sleeping bag into eachother's rooms.

So that would be a No, we don't do sleepover's. We do "Half-over's", Movie Nights, Game Nights, Pizza Party's, Girls' Night Out Parties, Boys' Night Out Parties...but no sleepovers.

I had too many experiences at sleepovers at friends my parents thought they knew really well, that I would not want my children to experience.

And I don't do kids over at our house either because frankly how fun is it for me to have to deal with the crabby kids the next morning? I'd rather let them stay up late (or late enough!) and then let their parent's deal with them.

That said this doesn't apply to least on my side of the family, lol. (so bad!)

Anonymous said...

This is my 3rd try to post a comment!! I'll do what TMM suggested (comment #2). BRIGHT idea.

(this is Julie - rarelyhomemom, btw)

Gabriela said...

Thank you all so much for your comments, I really appreciate the input.

Sorry Julie, Blogger is really bugging me. I am thinking about moving to Blogsome.

Kristen said...

Well, I've only had one sleepover experience so far, and that was just over at the next door neighbors house who my kids play with all the time. The experience I had the next day was enough to keep me from doing it again for a long time. Tired, cranky, and unbearable child the next day was no fun.

I think my policy would be only families of kids that I know very well, who attend my church, or who we interact with on a regular basis. I most likely wouldn't allow it if it's just someone from school whose family I've rarely if ever interacted with.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry for posting anonymously. I don't think beta likes me much.

I am among those that don’t believe in sleepovers. IMO there is NO reason for them. My daughters have “Late Nights” or “Breakfast Bashes.” We usually invite three other girls over and they all come in jammies and bring treats. We will usually do a craft, play a game and watch a movie and then they all go home around 9:00…I am sure it will get later as they get older. For breakfast they will stay in their pjs, come over for a breakfast smorgasbord and we will watch Saturday morning cartoons and usually have a pillow fight.

I am even more convinced of this decision because about a month ago, I found out that a little girl that I was friends with, well her dad went to prison for sexually assaulting her when she was little…badly assaulted her. This was before people had to register as sex offenders and there were very little rules about how it was handled. Her mom decided to STAY with him-how sick is that- and never told any of the parents of the little girls that slept over or were friends with her. Nothing ever happened to me, thank heavens, but they now think there were others.

I feel safer knowing that my daughters are home, safe in their beds. I want to know that I am there for them and I never want them to be put into a situation where they have to feel that terror that comes with abuse. I never want them to be cornered by someone’s father or brother.

I also NEVER want my husband’s integrity to come into question. Period.

Wow, sorry about the can of worms. I think I am HIGHLY opinionated on this one. Let us all know what you decide to do!

Stephanie--For Better or For Worse

Anonymous said...

I tried to post yesterday...

My opinion has been strongly stated already by the majority of people here.

We do the late night thing too.
No sleepovers here.

Kristine (some semblance of order)

Anonymous said...

well i went to a thousand slumber parties as a girl and i had a slumber party every chance i got. so naturally i want tp throw them for dd and her friends... i think it will have to be limited to families we know REALLY REALLY well.

Lei (my many colored days)

txmommy said...

Owlhaven did a similar post over the summer and I thought she got some insighful answers. You might look there.
We do sleepovers. But only at memebers homes and really not that often. One rule we have is that in High School they can NEVER sleep over after a football game/dance/school event. I want to see them when they are done, here about the fun they had and make sure they have no opportunity to hide anything. Even good kids can drink and then no one knows if mom doesn't tuck them in bed at night. (they can have friends here)
We also have several friends who do "late nights" only and that's a fun alternative that's popular in our ward.

No Cool Story said...

"One rule we have is that in High School they can NEVER sleep over after a football game/dance/school event" -tx mommy

Great point. I haven't had this happend yet, so it never even ocurred to me. Good rule, I shall adopt it too.

Jennifer said...

Yep--I'm selective. My daughter is only 8, so it hasn't really been a big deal--she's really only done a couple of sleepovers and those were with good friends of ours, who even went to our church. So, I don't mind it if I know the family well, but I'm praying I will be able to say no if I don't.

Nettie said...

I guess I am different on this one. I let my kids do sleepovers once they are 8 and are well educated on what is allowed and what is not. I'm very selective about whose homes they get to sleep at. And I don't assume that just because we go to the same church, that it is okay. I go by how I feel.

When my kids have sleepovers they sleep in the family room. I stay in the area discreetly supervising (while blogging, usually) until everyone is asleep. That way I know what they are up to the entire time they are awake. And I tell the parents that is what I do.

Sleepovers can be an opportunity for bad things to happen. But those bad things can happen in many other circumstances, as well. I try to protect my children, but still let them experiences the fun of being kids. Sleepovers, in my opinion, being part of the fun.

JD said...

This is a good one. I am sure you'll come up with at wonderful solution that will work for you. When you do Let me know so I can copy LOL

Carla (NCS sis) said...

My husband was sexually abused by his sitter, and he saya NO WAY for sleep overs!
When I was a kid my best friend was never allowed to sleep over, and now it occurs to me that since her dad was a plastic surgeon, that may mean that he seen enough things to absolutely say NO WAY EVER.

Anonymous said...

I think moms should do what they feel comfortable with, but I do let my children sleep over at people's houses that I know well. I would also like to point out that the VAST MAJORITY of children who are sexually abused have it happen in their own homes by a father or other relative so those of you who think you are keeping your kids safe statistically, aren't necessarily.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I'm a 12 year old girl and my parents don't allow me to have sleepovers. I understand where protective parents' views are coming from, but most of the parties I'm invited to are sleepovers. My friends don't want me to miss out on fun, but they don't want to change the rules just for me.

I don't mind missing out on sleeping at their house, but a lot of fun happens with midnight snacks and movies that I miss out on. Usually, I don't mind going home early, but recently as we start high school, the whole idea of sleeping over involves dinner and games for me, yet movies, pancakes, desserts, and heaps of other things for my friends.

I have never been to a sleep over, and all of a sudden, I am realising just how much I miss out on. In a few weeks, my friend is having a halloween party. The plan involves nothing but sitting around until about 11pm (when I go home)and then it's movies and popcorn all night long. As much as I know dangerous things can happen at sleepovers, I don't have any experience to say either, yes, sleepovers are not a good idea, or no, they're just a bit of harmless fun.

In my group of friends, I am the only one not allowed to sleepover, and this means that I feel left out. They are still kind to me, and are my friends, but I feel as though they know each other and I don't know them. Sleepovers happen so often now, I get frustrated when I have to just sit there and wait for the subject to pass.

I would only want to sleepover at a friend's house if I trust them, and their parents. So, I am in two minds as to whether I should persist in my argument, or should I relent to my parents' caring views?

Anonymous said...

Hi again, this is the 12 year old girl. Just to let you know that I'm in Australia, so I'm not still up at 4:14 am as my previous comment says! It's actually 9:14pm here in Australia.

Anonymous said...

I am a mother of one child, a girl, 12 years old. Her Friends are very nice to me , and they're parents are really nice.

But whenever my daughter asks me if she can sleep over I say " No, I can't sleep without knowing your safety". But I still want to give her a chance and I did once, it wasn't that bad.And maybe you, mothers, can let your daughter sleep over atleast ONCE, and you will see the smile on your daughter's face.

There is actually no reason if you say to your daughter to not sleepover that is just if they were annoying you too much.

If you tried and it worked then give them other chances and trust me that will make your daughter smile everyday and min. She will really love you and will change her mind to sleepover at anyone's house and she will sleepover your room. Parents, :JUST GIVE IT A TRY...

Remember, If you will be more harsh and strict to them they will want to disobey you more.

Anna Burns


Anonymous said...

OMG!! I can't believe that is also a big issue for other parents. My kids father decided to leave me (or us) over a slumber party, some distant relative of his was having. I never met them and our kids never met them, so I said no and all havoc broke loose. I was second guessing myself until I read everyone elses rational opinions..

Anonymous said...

well, as a child myself the late night thing is alright but i would like to experience the sleepover thing just at least once or twice. so if i was a parent i would do the late night thing but i would let them sleep over just once after i got to know the parents well.

Anonymous said...

I am 13 and my parents randomly decided recently that I was not allowed to go to sleepovers during term time, on the basis that I have insomnia and I would never get any sleep. The problem is,I wont be able to sleep at home either, also everybody is away during holidays making it almost impossible to organise a large sleepover. I don't want to do the 'late-night' thing because my parent's idea of a late night is ridiculously early. Also I am the only girl in a school year of 105 who is not allowed sleepovers... fair?

kelli said...

My name is Kelli Kennedy. I'm a reporter with AP (Associated Press) writing a lifestyle story on the 'no sleepover' trend. I'm hearing from lots of moms with tween girls who aren't allowing sleepovers bc they worry about not knowing what goes on behind closed doors, not knowing the dad well enough or a host of inappropriate things.
I read your comments with interest and would love to get your insights for my story if you would be willing to be interviewed.
My email is My cell is 305 903 1617. I'm based in Miami.

Anonymous said...

I'm a 12 year old girl and my first sleepover was when I was in year 3 and we played in the garden then went inside and talked all night and now cox I'm older sleepiness are better. We go into town the get the bus back to who Evers house were going to then we do makeovers and go to the park or the bottom of the street and talk or if it's raining we watch movies and eat sweets there is nothing dangerous about it at all