20 answers

At What Age Is Co-sleeping with a Grandparent Considered Inapproptiate

My daughter will be 9 years old in March. She is very tiny for her age. Some people think she is 5 or 6. Her grandfather (my dad) is very attached to her because when I had her, he was the one who watched her during the day for me while I worked. He works nights so he was able to do that.

Anyway, he lives in another state and visits often (about once every two months). Everytime he visits, he sleeps with my daughter in her bed for the whole night. My boyfriend pointed out his concern that my daughter is too old for that now. I guess I didn't realize it, but now I am agreeing with that thought.

Also, my dad bathes her sometimes when he watches her and I'm not home. I definitely think she is too old for this now.

I plan on telling him that she is getting to the age where she needs to learn to be modest around boys, even family.

My question is: at what age is co-sleeping considered inappropriate with opposite sex family members?

Does this seem off to you? I do not suspect anything abusive going on, but I am now wondering why my dad still thinks it is okay.

Thanks.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I had the talk with my daughter about this having to come to an end because she is a young lady now. She actually started to cry about not being able to sleep with her Papa because "everything will change now". I explained that nothing will change except that she will have more privacy. I guess she still wants to be babied. But I agree, there are girls her age that are developing. It just isn't right anymore. Thanks for input!

Featured Answers

He still thinks it's ok, because he still thinks of her as his little baby granddaughter. I would tell him that you are trying to teach her modesty and explain to her that as she gets older the rules change a bit. I remember when I was growing up I was so close to my grandfather "pepere" and then one day i was too old to stay in his room when I spent the night and had to go to the spare room. There was never anything inappropriate just a very close bond between a grandparent and his granddaughter.

5 moms found this helpful

I would say she is too old. My sons are 5 and 6 and they can bath themselves. Even the sleeping thing is a little odd. I could see cuddling a little before they go to bed, but it is time for her to have more privacy.

3 moms found this helpful

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He still thinks it's ok, because he still thinks of her as his little baby granddaughter. I would tell him that you are trying to teach her modesty and explain to her that as she gets older the rules change a bit. I remember when I was growing up I was so close to my grandfather "pepere" and then one day i was too old to stay in his room when I spent the night and had to go to the spare room. There was never anything inappropriate just a very close bond between a grandparent and his granddaughter.

5 moms found this helpful

I remember seeing a show where the mom was co-sleeping with her son about that age and the therapist said it needed to be addressed.
Put your dad on the couch -- or your daughter on the couch.
And Grandpap bathing a 9 yo? I don't think that's a good idea. Watching? Sure. Bathing? No.
I'm totally not implying your dad is wrong--he's probably a dear trying to blend in & help out, but I think you need to initiate a few small changes--like sleeping arrangements and bathing rules.

4 moms found this helpful

This is inappropriate and creepy. He is not a parent, but a grandparent and a male to boot, so when was there ever an appropriate need to co-sleep at all? Certainly not to breastfeed. What's wrong with the kids sleeping on the couch, or a sleeping bag on the floor for visits? That's what my cousins and I did as kids when we visited grandparents. Never in their room, but us in the living room or guest room. In fact my gramps was even a stickler about bathing suits and being covered up well just to go to the beach...even when we were kids. He had nothing to do with bath time at all.

Ideally, grandma should have been in charge of baths when she was younger.

I take it grandma is out of the picture...in that case, I wouldn't put the child in a position where she'd be doing overnights alone with him at all.

3 moms found this helpful

Sometime before puberty would be good. I'd have said by about 6 yrs old.
She's upset 'everything' will change? Growing up happens to everybody. Small changes come every day. You'd better start having some discussions about puberty soon or her period is going to come as quite a shock. Some girls your daughter's age have started already, although for many they are 10 or 11 when they start. Was your Dad bathing you when you were 9 yrs old? I'm kind of surprised he hasn't started getting a bit uncomfortable about this already. You are the Mom. Define some boundaries.

3 moms found this helpful

awww, I feel sorry for the conversation that you have to have with your dad. But yes, you have to have it. The only man i would allow my daughter to sleep with would be her dad. And id never let anyone bathe her past the age of diapers, other than maybe to help to wash the hair, but past 5 is pushing it there too.

I think you have the right angle, the modesty discussion, and perhaps you can set up an air mattress to where your daughter can still sleep in the same room, just not the same bed.

3 moms found this helpful

I would say she is too old. My sons are 5 and 6 and they can bath themselves. Even the sleeping thing is a little odd. I could see cuddling a little before they go to bed, but it is time for her to have more privacy.

3 moms found this helpful

How did your dad raise you? When did he stop bathing you? I remember when I was 10, I no longer wanted my parents to see me getting in the shower or bath tub, so I did it alone from then on. Has your daughter said anything? This all sounds quite sweet, and it's really nice he's as into his granddaughter as he is. Until your daughter says something, I wouldn't worry about it. By the time she's 11 or 12, she'll make it clear she wants to sleep alone. How does she feel about bathing? Do you or your boyfriend bathe her or does she do it herself? If she does it herself, I would just tell him that she has really grown up and she's bathing herself now.

2 moms found this helpful

While every family is different, I think that there is a difference between those families that regularly share the family bed with older children and what you are describing. She is definitely far too old for grandpa to share her bed when he visits and give her a bath. While I am very open-minded, I find his behavior a bit disturbing. It could very well be completely innocent but I do think you need to put an end to it.

2 moms found this helpful

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