When you hear about slumber parties and sleepovers, do you silently wish that your child will not be interested to attend one too soon? When your family friend is hosting a sleepover party, are you comfortable about the idea that your child will be out of your sight and supervision for a while? Even if your child has probably slept over with other relatives before, you may still be uneasy about the whole thing.
It is only common for parents to be ambivalent about the idea of slumber parties. And no matter how fun it may seem for kids, some parents may not be sold out with the idea. Of course, parents could never be blamed for feeling apprehensive. After all, it is never easy to entrust the welfare of a child to a family that you may not know so well.
When your child asks permission to attend his first sleepover party, the most important thing that you need to consider is his safety. Find out how many kids will be attending the party, and it may also be a good idea to get in touch with the host parents. Invite them for coffee or tea, so you will at least have an idea about their family.
Go ahead and discuss things like safety issues and health concerns. While you cannot entirely judge their values and parenting approach after a short meeting, it can help settle your growing apprehension. Being parents themselves, they can definitely understand your actions.
Since children mature differently, there is no fixed age on when sleepovers are ideal. Just bear in mind that your child should be able to look after himself before he is allowed to attend one. If you think that your child is ready for the separation, discuss proper behavior and tell your child that if he changes his mind during the course of the sleepover, it’s definitely alright to call home.
As much as we want to keep our kids in our safe cocoons, we also need to give them room for growth. During this stage when they are open to new experiences, it is our duty to make sure that they are taking safe risks. When you come to think about it, sleepovers can very much indicate a developmental milestone. It is actually a time when kids are ready to be physically away from their parents, so they can test their own wings.
We could never stop the hands of time from turning, and as much as we want our kids to need us, we also have to be selfless so they will learn how to become independent individuals. There is actually no guarantee at how a sleepover will turn out. Some kids may end up going home in the middle of the night, while others may have a blast with the entire process.
As parents, we would always want to be around during our child’s many firsts. But in times when they also need space so they can find their place in this world, we also have to learn how to step aside so they will learn essential life skills