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is it ok for a 12 year old boy to sleep with his mom
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is it ok for a 12 year old boy to sleep with his mom

my girlfriend is a single mother of five children. The youngest of which is a 12 year old boy. she has been a single mom since he was a baby and has done a wonderful job raising all of the kids. Lately it has been a topic of discussion between us about her 12 year old boy wanting to sleep with her. When I am there and spend the night, he has no problem sleeping in his own bed, but when I am not there, he wants to sleep in bed with his mother. I have tried to tell her that it is not healthy for a 12 year old to be sleeping with his mother, but when i bring it up she gets angry and tells me that i am not a doctor and that there is nothing wrong with it. She says that he is just a very affectionet child and wants to feel close and loved. I have expressed my concerns about a 12 year old boy and how they start to develop sexually at that age. she says i am way off base and i should mind my own business. I know that this is not normal behavior, but it is something that should be a big concern. Should she wait until he outgrows it or make it stop immediately.
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It's not a good idea for a parent to be sleeping with a tweleve year old child (or with a child of any age, for that matter). The issue of development of early adolescence complicates the situation with a child of twelve, but even if it weren't for this the child's mother shouls stop this practice. He's clearly able to sleep in his own bed. It may be that his mother is satisfying her own need for companionship by this preactice. It is definitely not a good idea.
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This is the mom again.........my son goes to bed in his own bed...he wakes up at night and then will come in sometimes......it has gotten to be less and less and now nearly at all. Whatever his reasons were for wanting to be with me I feel he is working out. I never once have ever asked my son to sleep with me.  This is something he started when we moved in our house 4 years ago. As a mother of five I am not lacking companionship and look forward to my time at night by myself. I am also aware of boys and their arousal at a certain age and if and when that were the case I would certainly feel uncomfortable.  I am not sick or perverse.  
This is kind of a personal thing with me and my bf who is only here every other weekend and does not know what goes on here on a daily basis. Nor does he know any of my children the way that I do as I have spent all their lives with them.
  He also does not mention that his own son slept in a bed with him when he stayed over his house until he was 13.
I am comfortable in my decisions and have gotten other input as well.  The advice in this forum comes from a social worker,LICSW(Licensed, independent clinical social worker) and after finding that out I would not expect any other answer than his original reply.
A home of hugs and affection is nothing to be sorry for.  Nor is it disturbing in any way.  It is in the minds of people where that all starts.

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No one mentioned that you were sick or perverse.  I don't think it entered any one's mind who read any of the posts.  Disturbing is just what it sounds, it did not imply anything perverse.  Despite the fact that the advice comes from an LCSW, I don't think any professional at any level would agree with your reasoning.  Affection is a wonderful and critical part of any child's life- but an adolescent of the opposite sex sleeping with a parent is just not appropriate no matter what the particular logic behind it may be.
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This is that mom....i dont believe all information has been given by my bf.  He does not sleep with me every night......spends many nights away from home....and has never given me a hard time when he could not sleep with me (when my boyfriend stays here).  I have researched this topic and found much more info than was posted here.
  
I would also suggest that joemhappy post his question in this forum as he might recieve another opinion other than going to a place that satisfies the answer he was hoping to find.
http://www.medhelp.org/perl6/ChildBehavior/messages/33332.html

I might add that joemhappy had approached the subject by calling it sick and perverse. And also, that maybe my son had psychological problems. Makes faces and sighs when my son comes and puts his head in my lap while we watch tv.
  More info....I have had to overcome my childrens father not being part of their lives for the past 10 years.  All my children are very affectionate and show it to the people they care about and know who care about them. I treat my children as individuals and not part of a group.  They all have certain needs and as a mother I will be there for them no matter what others may percieve our relationships to be.  

Please read the other information on the website above.....and not settle for the answer that is strictly black and white.  The response showed no factual information and even included a "but".
(and also cant spell very well)
Would love to hear more input on this.
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You are the parent and, ultimately, only you can make the decision. But it would be prudent for you to examine your behavior and to ask yourself: Is this necessary? Does it promote my son's development for me to be sleeping with him at his age? Is this a normal thing to be doing? It is our obligation to provide you with reasonable, responsible feedback, and it would be irresponsible for us to endorse your behavior.
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Curious as to whether you looked at any of the info on this site and perhaps might respond to its content. I am recieving alot of conflicting information,




http://www.medhelp.org/perl6/ChildBehavior/messages/33332.html
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My 2 cents ... I don't feel that it is right to sleep through the night, together, on a regular basis at all.  Personally I would not be comfortable with it, but, speaking from experience, if you have a child that for whatever reasons, needs to be with you more than others to feel safe/loved or whatever the reason ... I don't think an occassional night in mom's bed here and there would kill them, and I do STRESS occassional.

HEre's what I do:  My 6 yr. old has some issues he's dealing with and some nights are really tough for him.  He has school the next day etc., so if at 11pm if he is still struggling - I let him lie down with me.  He ALWAYS goes right out once with me and then he is moved into his own room.  Most often he stays in there until morning.  Occassionally I do lead him back in the wee hours but most often, he is fine.

I assume the BF has no kids?  Do what you have to do to maintain peace in your home.  Just make sure that your son understands what's appropriate and what's not.
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Maybe you (the mother) need the comfort or companionship. You have been given the highest opinion of a respected authority and still vehemently try to dispute.  I have to agree, this is disturbing.
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The web address you cite is this Forum. I am the person who responds to the questions, and I must reiterate that your behavior is not sensible. The fact that you and your gentleman friend are having a conflict is beside the point. Hopefully you can resolve your differences. But, on the face of it, your behavior warrants concern. For the benefit of your son, take a careful look at what you are doing, try not to act in a defensive way, and make some changes by setting sensitive but firm limits.

Kevin D. Kennedy, Ph.D.
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I have a friend whose 11 year old (soon to be 12) son also sleeps with her.  He also sleeps with his grandmother that lives next door.  The problem becomes more difficult to change whenever others involved do not view it as a problem.  This mother recognizes that it is a problem but her own mother reinforces his behavior by telling her that he is simply afraid of sleeping by himself.  Let me state that I am a former investigator of child abuse/neglect.  I explained to her that had I come across a situation such as this it would have warranted action.  It is NOT healthy, or appropriate for a child of 12 years to still be sleeping in the bed with ANY adult and especially one of the opposite sex.  My friend is aware of this and has tried numerous times to stop his behavior only to be scolded by her own mother for not allowing this to continue.  My advise to her was to not allow him to sleep at his grandmothers house (more importantly - her bed)until this behavior changes.  There is a real concern here for inappropriate touching at this age given the accessibility.  I am sure if (when) this child touches his grandparent then it will be a wake-up call that it is time to remove this child from her bed.
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Why does anyone on this forum dr or otherwise feel it prudent to advise an obviously loving, caring, aware, attentive, providing PARENT when it is time for HER son to sleep in his own bed (which he obviously does and most likely will NOT be doing much longer of his own accord)???

I don't care what the "authorities" say a parent needs to do what they feel is best for their children. Each child is an individual and needs to be treated as such.

It wasn't the mom who came here for support or help it was the BF (who seems slightly jealous of his GF's attention and tenderness towards her son).

There is more to this situation than meets the eye. Before judging I wonder how many here have an affectionate 12 year old son.

My FIL passed away 2 years ago and many of the brothers and sisters innocently slept together in the same bed (the children still at home ranged in age from 19 to 10). It helped them feel secure and safe.

This little boy (yes LITTLE BOY...he's 12 not 18!!) has been raised without a father in his life. For now he's "Momma's boy"; he will eventually grow to be a man and in that process grow out of sleeping in his mother's bed.

What exactly is it that is potentially "harmful" about this situation or not "sensible"?

The dr also mentioned that children of "any age" shouldn't sleep in their parent's bed...he has expressed his opinion and that is all. He has no scientific basis to back up his claims.

SCparent, I am AGHAST that you would investigate a parent for the sole reason that they sleep in the same bed as a minor child! Do you live in America?? Do you seriously believe that every parent that sleeps with their minor child is suspect of ABUSE/NEGLECT?? There are REAL issues of abuse and neglect to be investigated. I live in a state where seriously abused and neglected children are returned to homes because their parents completed a "rehabilitation" program...guess where those children are a year later...back into foster care and 10 years later they're in therapy...or jail. Makes me ill...

I realize there are very real situations of abuse but where do the government and medical professionals draw the line? Investigating abuse where there is none can be as traumatizing for children as actually being abused (I've seen it happen).

This mom obviously wants what is best for her son. I respect her for not bowing to the "professionals". I believe she is in tune with her son's needs. The closeness they share will last a lifetime.

I'm amazed that many here have accused her of sleeping with her son to fulfill her unmet need for companionship and comfort. Honestly, is it wrong to enjoy the companionship of your kids whether during the day or otherwise. Is that "harmful" and "insensible"?

How many parents here can truly say they have never gone into their teenager's room at night, looked down at their sleeping face and wished that they could pick that child up and rock them in their arms like they used to? How many parents can say they don't long for the days when they used to hold their child's hand, lay with them when they were sick, a time when they were the center of their child's world. What kind of a parent doesn't look back and cherish those days or in the midst of it wish it could stretch out a little longer.

This woman's child is still just a little boy.  

Kelly

P.S. I think it's the rest of us that need to get our minds out of the gutter and see the innocence of the situation.

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i just run into this site researching another topic, but found it imperativ to write another point of view.
i am very concerned about the person HVMA responding in an 'official' manner  with a PH D( in psychology?!)
i was very saddened  reading  HVMA response which is not only very damaging, but opinionated, strongly biased by his personal view of the world and not at least educational. from any   counselor i request a respectful, helpful and sensible answer and not a sledge hammer or a moralizing finger pointing. also, if i may point out your opinion is sooo in the minority if you take a look at the world population where at least most moms (often dads too! sleep closely together, sharing the same blanket to keep warm, snuggled up for closeness and comfort etc.
the US is probably one of the counties with the highest perctage of people with sexuality problems......steeming certainly not from family co-sleeping.

my comment to Mskattykat: while it may not always be appropriate to sleep in the same bed with a teenager i like to point out that there is a very strong movement in the us on co-sleeping, which is so very normal amongst the mayority of the world popolation.
you can research co-cleeping on the web, mothering magazine has articles in their archive on this issue as well. trust your instincts and educate yourself from people from different walks of life.
by the way - your situation, as much as anyone could say from what you wrote sounded very healthy to me. keep trusting your instincts and share such issues with other wise women and other self-empowering people ..... warm greetins and best of luck.
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It seems like you are here to be desputiv with some of the people. In this particular case, you don`t even know the total truth, since you only accept the boyfriend`s version. In order to give someone advice, you need to rewiew to whole story, and put your prejudice behind.
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I don't see what the problem is.  I have two children ages 3 and 6.  While neither have slept in the bed with my husband and myself we have let them come in on occaison such as sick, bad dreams, afraid during a thunderstorm.  Kids need to feel close to their parent sometimes for differnt reasons.  Maybe they just can sleep, are worried about something that happened at school, and who is the one person they can go to that will comfort them and help them feel safe -- Mom or Dad.  I think parents should enjoy having their child want to be near them. At some point kids do grow up and it becomes uncool to hang out with Mom and Dad.  I know I enjoy every hug and kiss from my little ones.  I enjoy laying in bed on Saturday morning and watching cartoons.  I don't see how a mom letting her 12 year old come in every now and then would be a problem.  When I was growing up my Dad would work nights occasionly.  I can remember sleeping with me Mom lots of times because I couldn't sleep or becasue she couldn't sleep or I just wanted someone to talk to.  When this happend I was in college.  The only thing it did was make me feel closer to my Mom -- which is a good thing.  I gave me the sense of knowing that she was always going to be there for me.
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Wow, I am really surprised at the comments concerning the Family Bed situation.  Perhaps a 12 year old boy with his mother is getting into the upward range of what is acceptable on a regular basis, but I certainly wouldn't be so quick to say, "Any child of any age with any adult in a bed is inappropriate."  The whole sleeping in seperate beds is a relatively new concept - children have been sharing beds with each other and their parents for centuries, either from lack of money for seperate beds, lack of space, or even just the desire to be close to each other.  In America, where both parents work all day to keep up with their bills, often the family bed gives them a chance to just be together.

I have worked for the state in Family Services, and during my six months of training and regular continued training, "bed sharing" was never linked to abuse (it may be a sign, but not the CAUSE).  Perhaps it is time for her son to start sleeping in his own bed because our society deems such independance to be so important, but I was very disappointed to see such finger pointing from a forum where parents seek out scientific, fact based help on concerns about their children.  Although it was the boyfriend who posted that message, there will be other parents reading this information as well.

What about any suggestions to find out WHY her son is feeling so anxious that he gets up in the middle of the night to seek comfort?  Isn't the point to help the child with his problems and not to judge the mother for what may or may not be appropriate behavior?  I have not heard anything from the mother's statements to make me feel that she is abusive, only that perhaps she a little too accomidating.

I would suggest to any parent to simply do an online search, talk to other parents, and talk to their child's doctor to see both sides of the family-bed idea, and develop your own opinion.  What may be best for one person's child may not be best for your child and vice versa.  I hesitate to take blanket advice from anyone that is not supported by some facts.
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mskattykat. i hope i got your name right and you are the mom of the 12year old who sleeps with her.
my son just turned 14 in dec.when he was 12 he also slept with me. you mentioned the father had not been active in his life but other then that i didn't see any ask you what might else be going on in his life. my son slept with me almost every night for 2 years. there was nothing wrong or perverse about it and there is nothing wrong with your son doing in in my opinion.my son also started out every night in his own bed. if he slept over night somewhere he was fine. but at home by morning i would find he had climbed in with me. it always woke me up but sometimes just enough to cover him up. we never handled it as if something was wrong with it. he is also very affectionate and was nothing for him to want to cuddle to watch tv. even now at 14 he will come lay his head on my shoulder or cuddle with balnket with me while wathcing tv.
my son has been in counceling for adhd and anxiety for over 2 years.it came out in coucneling he was having nightmares about someone hurting me and the family. he dealt daily with anxiey that most of us would not be able to handle even while on meds.my point in telling you is that there is most likely other reasons then"he just wants to sleep with his mom".you are right in being there for him.for whatever reason he needs you mosre in this period of his life. i would encourage counceling because i did find with he was dealing with things he didn't understand.the anxety had bcome so much a way of life for him he didn't know more normal until on meds.
go with your gut instinct with your son.
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I read another post similar to this one and Im going to add my response here as well ..By the way the bf did make a reference to the 12 year old boy going thru puberty....I think its sick that this society is so quick to make something so natural seem wrong,,,and to make sexual connotations is horrible. We feel as though our rules are the only rules....Our society says kids should be separated from parents and sleeping in their own beds from babies....WHY? (Only in the western world...I have a daughter who is 10 years and 4 mos. old and she still sleeps with me on a regular basis...their is nothing sick or sexual about it.
She has always had her own bed...We jave gone thru four of them. Just out of the need to do what society says we should. the second one after the baby bed, was one of those play house type beds for tottlers and young children, She quite enjoyed playing on it! Then we moved to the "real bed" a full size that she got to pick out a nice pink compforter for...then a few years later on a shopping spree I got her all new bedroom furniture, including Bunk Beds for when she has sleep Overs....Even with all of that.... she still prefers moms bed, and mom doesnt mind. I have been pushed by society to get her out of there because this isnt socially acceptable, Hense buying so many beds at different ages....but to hell with it....My daughter and I are a team in every aspect of our lives...Im a single mom and shes an only child and she finds confort and security in sleeping with mom, and mom feels a scence of security in keeping her baby close, warm and safe! I dont think thats an unatural act for a good mom...or dad! Yup shes still my baby. And I still feel the naturing need just as strong today as I did the day we brought her home from the hospital. Yes she is older and the roles change...but Im still mom and shes still a child...whats more natural that sleeping with YOUR child...Every body isnt Michale Jackson.
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They grow up so fast enjoy your children no one knows there needs better then Mom and Dad.  if Dad be present.  everyone has there view.  at the end of the day mom has to do whats best for her children.  i am mom of 6 and they all have different needs and its up to us as parents to know exactly what they are.
best of luck to you and remember continue to pray for your kids everyday and God will show you whats best for him..

you are in my prayers and God bless you for being such an awsome loving mom...
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i think its ok because when i was 12 i slept with my mom and nothing happend i felt nothing in any way so i think its ok i mean it just depends on how the child thinks so i think its ok it
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thanks to all that responded to this page....has it helped....yes it helped me alot.......just to know that it was my choice as a parent and that there are people who support my decision and I am not out of my mind sick or perverse....if you care to know how this page has affected my life here it goes........i still think my boyfriend is a ***...lol...he hasnt looked at this page since he got the answer he wanted from the doc.....I redid my sons bedroom for christmas......new bed and furniture etc.....he has not been back to sleep with me since why????i dont know........but we still curl up together on the couch to watch tv and i still get all those hugs and affection from him like always....it was not the bed that made our bond together.....it was about love and being there for eachother no matter what the reason. Kinda like how i wish my boyfriend would be.
Thanks again and I hope this has helped someone else.
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I to would like to take a moment and thank everyone who took the time to write regarding this issue. For those of you who do not know, I am the bf. A lot has come from this, some good and some bad. I want everyone to know that the reason I wrote this question in the first place was because I thought i was seeking an honest medical answer to a question that I had concerns with. My concerns were not that it was perverse or wrong in that sense, but that it may not have been good for the child long term. Obviously my concerns were not founded, nor should they be a concern for others. Both as children and as adults, we are told that we should ask questions when we are not sure of something, this is how we learn. I thought that I was asking a board certified professional for advice, I guess I was wrong. If seeking an answer and trying to educate myself on a topic that i did not know anything about is wrong, then I am sorry. I never meant any harm to anyone.
PS: i did look at all the responses.
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My son is twelve.  He has had alot of deaths in his few years on earth.  He is terrified of loosing the person left to him.  He is in therapy for years, but as people keep dying it remains hard to keep him feeling safe.  For years he would only sleep in the living room with all the lights on.  I am happy I can now at least get him into my room with the lights on dim.  To the mother who has a problem with her BF and his opinions.  There are just too many men out there and only 5 children.  Love cannot be dirty.  
Funny as Americans we sleep with our cats, our dogs and people we barely know.  But give our children the comfort and safety when they are sleeping and its perverted.  I would have a hard time explaining to my son, the dog can stay but you have to go....
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Hi.   I would really like to give a different perspective as to why a twelve year old boy might (and this is a might, depending upon the situation) occasionally enjoy lying down with his mother at night.  At the age of twelve, there are so many emotions and experiences that are confusing to young men.  They have highs and lows, rejection and fear of rejection, fear of not "measuring up" and those bigger than life sexual feelings that they simply don't know how to channel.  The fact is that most boys at the age of twelve feel embarrassed to seek the much needed maternal affection and nurturing of their emotional wounds in the daytime, when another person can see their pain.  When others can actually see the pain, they are more vulnerable, and they can also see the fear, worry, anger, or whatever emotion might show upon the parent's face.  At night, when the lights are dim and you aren't looking at him in the face, he perhaps feels more comfortable allowing himself to be vulnerable.  You can give him at night what he "needs" while still appreciate his developing manhood in the light of day.  As if, "I'll tell you all about my fears and who hurt me today, but don't make me look at you while I tell you."  Ask any parent to try to insist upon eye-contact while asking his or her child, at the dinner table, "How did you feel when she laughed at you after you said. . . ." Then ask the same parent to try lying down with the kid at night, while holding his hand, and asking the same question.  It's no surprise that most parents learn the most about their kids (especially boys) late at night, when their pain can't be "seen."  Boys fear being thought of as weak and being called "a momma's boy" but the reality is that there are times when he needs someone stronger than him to help him during his "weak" times. And, I am always leary of anyone with an "all or nothing; black or white" mentality.  The one thing I learn with time is how little I really know about what is best for everyone else; having my own three children has been the most humbling experience of my life!!!  And, I will always be grateful for that.   Adelaide
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i so agree with pandooora its so true.....  Good Job
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Hi mskattykat

My 12 year old and my 7 year old son keep jumping into bed with me wanting to be cuddled off to sleep. The 12 year old gets jealous that the 7 year old gets to lie in bed having a cuddle if he doesnt. So I just go with the flow.

The 12 year old has in fact gone into early adolescence - he's in love with a host of pretty female Australian pop stars. He also has a crush on my 30 year old girlfriend. And an unexpected side effect of having overseas students live with me, is that he has developed warm friendships with a number of the girls - he has had invitations to holiday all over the world. He constantly rebels against me. I dont understand it that every other young females adores him - and talks of his compassion and sensitivity.

But as for wanting to sleep with me, I'm just going with the flow. Adults don't like to sleep alone - why do we think its healthy for children to do so? There's nothing sexual in it. Both kids tell me that they want to be with their mum because they feel safe, and because "it's warm and comfortable" - whatever that means. I can promise that acording to the 12 year old, I have no other positive qualities - I'm the worst mother on earth.

But he needs to be assured that he is loved and feels safe - and crawling into bed with mum does it for him - and thats all there is to that story.

My kid will grow out of it when he is ready - the same way he grew out of his dummy - and so will yours. I don't think this is an area that men are terribly wise on.

Helen
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FIRST I WOULD LIKE TO SAY THAT SOME CHILDREN ESPECIALLY CHILDREN THAT WERE ALLOWED TO SLEEP WITH THEIR PARENTS WHEN THEY WERE LITTLE DO IT OUT OF HABIT. I DON'T FEEL IT IS SOMETHING TO FREAK OUT ABOUT AND I WOULD ONLY BE CONCERNED IF THE MOTHER WAS INSISTING ON IT WHICH SHE IS NOT. I DON'T KNOW HOW OLD MY DAUGHTER WAS WHEN SHE STOPPED COMING IN OUR BED BUT IF I TOOK HER BACK TO HER BED SHE WAS LIKE A BOOMERANG AND WOULD COME RIGHT BACK. WHEN SHE WOULD STAY AT HER DAD'S SHE ALWAYS SLEPT WITH HIM AND WAS DADDY'S LITTLE GIRL. HE BOUGHT HER A NEW BEDROOM SET WHICH I DON'T THINK SHE EVER SLEPT IN. I KNOW SHE STOPPED WAY BEFORE 12 BUT SHE IS NOW 21 AND WHEN I GO AND VISIT HER SHE WILL STILL CUDDLE UP WITH ME ONCE IN A WHILE AND FALL ASLEEP, SHE'S MY BABY AND WHY PEOPLE OR DR'S WANT TO SEE IT AS UNHEALTHY IS RIDICULOUS. UNLESS YOU HAVE MOLESTATION PROBLEMS GOING ON AT HOME WHY IS IT A PROBLEM? MOTHERS ARE MORE NUTURING THAN MEN ESPECIALLY IF HE DOESN'T HAVE CHILDREN AND THIS GUY SEEMS TO BE JEALOUS OF HER SON WHICH IS NOT GOOD. AS THE MOTHER SAID ITS NOT A ALNIGHT THING CRAWLING INTO BED IN THE MORNING WITH MOM IS OKAY BECAUSE THEY ARE GOING TO GROW UP AND CRAWL INTO THERE WIFE'S BED AND NO LONGER BE OUR BABIES SAVOUR EVERY MOMENT YOU CAN WITH YOUR KIDS LIFE IS TO PRECIOUS TO WORRY ABOUT WHAT SOME CHILDLESS MAN THINKS. MORE PARENTS SHOULD LOVE THEIR KIDS HALF AS MUCH IT MIGHT MAKE OUR WORLD MUCH SAFER IF KIDS WERE LOVED MORE AND SHOWED AFFECTION THEN WE MIGHT NOT HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT SOME KID BLOWING OUR HEAD OFF FOR A $1, THEY WOULD HAVE MORE LOVE IN THEIR HEARTS AND CARE ABOUT OTHERS. I HAVE ALWAYS WONDERED WHY SO MANY KIDS TODAY ARE SO COLD THIS PRETTY MUCH ANSWERS MY QUESTION. SHOW LOVE AND RECEIVE LOVE YOU WILL HAVE BETTER KIDS FOR IT.
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A related discussion, My baby's shoulders click. was started.
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A related discussion, 12 year old boy in bed with mother was started.
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Everyone is obviously defending their feelings on this subject. Well that's understandable, but there r many other ways to establish and maintain the sense of security, closeness, or any other needs. What happened to talking about the things that are bothering them, or what the root of the problem causing the child to sleep in bed with the parents. Parents are our childrens greatest teachers, teaching or showing a child that we should just go to sleep after they come into bed with us is not healthy. I know at times children definitely need that security and reassurrance from their parents, better ways to give that to your children than through sleeping with them in your bed when ever the child is upset or scared or whatever the case maybe. Ever thought of getting up and sacrificing some sleep to talk to the child about why he or she is in "need" of sleeping with the parents. Or just try holding them and comforting them about what is really bothering them. Communication with the child is best way to get through to them, having or letting the child sleep with the parents sure isn't doing the child any good, it tells the child that we should just go to sleep and it will be ok because they are beside us in bed, that sets a habbit or standard that the child will follow. We as parents should lead by example, if u want your child to feel close to u, secure at night, reassured that everything is ok, then talk to them about it not sleep with them about it. Even if u have to sit up with them for awhile and just hang out or talk about it, u can comfort and reassure them then put them back in their bed, or u go lay down with them for awhile, stop being lazy. The child will follow whatever examples the parent sets for them, monkey see monkey do is the old saying. Sleeping isn't parenting, take some time and get up out of bed to face the problem, can't face it sleeping. The child will appreciate your time and effort a lot more rather than hugging them and telling them its going to be alright because they r sleeping beside you, that developes a false sense of what being secure or assured is, when they get scared or are bothered they should just come sleep with mom and dad and the fear or problem will just go away, not exactly truthful parenting towards the kid. Like I've ssaid earlier in this post I do think it is ok for the child to seek out the parent for comfort or security at night, but sleeping is sleeping, not comforting or reassuring them of their security. Most of the time the coforting and reassurance of feeling safe and secure is given before sleeping occurs, not during, that is why I said to get up and see what is going on, not just say get into bed and rollover and go back to sleep. That is not how u make sure an baby is taken care of at night, u get up and go take care of them then u get to go back to sleep. I'm glad my daughter knows she can come to me anytime night or day, and I will be here for her, not sleep here for her. If u don't show your kids that your are willing to take the time to talk to them about what is going on right then, what example are you setting for them? Goodluck! Hopefully my comments helped and did upset u a little. The truth does hurt. So does life.
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