Is 7 Years Old Too Old for Sleeping with Stuffed Animals?

Updated on July 03, 2011
T.C. asks from Birmingham, AL
48 answers

My seven year old son has a collection of stuffed animals and he feels as though he NEEDS to sleep with one evry night. He used to sleep with a bed full and then I took it down to one. He will be eight very soon. What do you guys think?

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So What Happened?

Thank you guys sooooo much for your responses. I totally agree with all of you. I guess I'm just over reacting, because I certainly don't want to rush him to grow up too fast. In fact that is the last thing that I want. He's keeping them as long as he wants. Thank you for helping me to look at things in a different perspective.

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B.C.

answers from Dallas on

What? No. He's still so little. Who cares if he wants to sleep with a toy??? My daughter is almost 10 and still sleeps with her webkinz. Not a concern of mine. My sister in law still sleeps with hers and she's 28.

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S.H.

answers from Honolulu on

NO.

I have a 7 year old. She does that too. Its fine... I did that too as a child.
Do not make him feel weird about it.
It is childhood.
It is memories.
It is fine.
Nothing wrong with it.

all the best,
Susan

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L.L.

answers from Hartford on

I don't think he is too old. My son is almost 8 and still has a lot of them. Some are special that he sleeps with. We have had more then a few sleepovers and every kid has always brought one as well.

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B.C.

answers from Dallas on

What? No. He's still so little. Who cares if he wants to sleep with a toy??? My daughter is almost 10 and still sleeps with her webkinz. Not a concern of mine. My sister in law still sleeps with hers and she's 28.

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S.H.

answers from Detroit on

I am happy to see that all of the responses are "NO", don't get rid of the stuffed animal(s). He is still so young and unfortunately, we live in a society that tries to grows up our boys too fast... and it has devastating effects on them (read Real Boys... very interesting). Anyway, look at it this way... you get rid of his stuffed animal, he feels scared, or insecure, and he will quickly learn that it is not okay to have these feelings (normal feelings), then will be ashamed every time he does, then will replace those feelings with anger or try to numb his feelings in some really unhealthy ways too. I am sure you have great intentions, however I really believe strongly that you will be doing your son a disservice if you force him through this stage. He will be pressured enough to be a "man" way to soon... he doesn't need that pressure from you.

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M.P.

answers from Provo on

Ummmmm. . .if he is getting a good night sleep, what's the point? I slept with a stuffed animal until my son was born. (i'm a single mom and I missed sleeping with my ex). Why do you think he needs to pass this phase? He'll grow out of it when HE wants to.

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S.H.

answers from Honolulu on

NO.

I have a 7 year old. She does that too. Its fine... I did that too as a child.
Do not make him feel weird about it.
It is childhood.
It is memories.
It is fine.
Nothing wrong with it.

all the best,
Susan

5 moms found this helpful
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E.M.

answers from Johnstown on

Ummmm is 30+ too old for sleeping with stuffed animals?

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S.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

I slept with a stuffed animal through high school and college.
What's the problem?
S.

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H.W.

answers from Des Moines on

Gosh no!!!! I went into surgery at the age of 20 with a stuffed animal. Why do you think he should get rid of them? I don't think it is going to do any harm to him if he continues to sleep with one; it is security for him. My bigger concen would be if you take it away...then he will loose that security and what reaction will you get then??? He could regress and start wetting the bed, coming in to sleep with you, have nightmare, be afraid of the dark....the repercussions (sp?) are endless. If he wants it, let him have it, eventually he will grow out of it.

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N.H.

answers from Dallas on

NO, not to old at all!

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S.B.

answers from Topeka on

Nope, let him sleep with them. I slept with a mountain of bears until I left for college. Even then I brought my favorite teddy bear with me. I no longer sleep with bears... so I seriously doubt he will sleep with them for the rest of his life.

Also my 10 year old was just like your son. He had to have a million and one bears in his bed. Here recently I guess he felt the need to put them away.. even his beloved one. They are all stuffed in his closet.

He will outgrow it himself. I would not force it on him.

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J.B.

answers from Atlanta on

NO! Plenty of adults sleep with stuffed animals! He's comforted by them and he's just a little boy -enjoy it while you can! I'm sorry, I just can't imagine why you would want to be done with something so sweet.

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S.M.

answers from Washington DC on

No, don't rush him, he is a little boy and there is nothing strange about it at all. And really, even if he was unusual (which he is not), who cares?

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A.P.

answers from Eugene on

I'm 29 and still sleep with my blanket--in fact I took it to the hospital with me when I had my son. It's nice to have something familiar to sleep with!

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L.L.

answers from Hartford on

I don't think he is too old. My son is almost 8 and still has a lot of them. Some are special that he sleeps with. We have had more then a few sleepovers and every kid has always brought one as well.

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S.H.

answers from Dallas on

If the stuffed animal makes him feel secure at night then let him have it. Its kinda like when your husband is next to you sleeping and it gives you a safe, secure feeling. He may feel a little alone at night and this helps.

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B.B.

answers from Portland on

I still have teddy bears from when I was a child...I don't sleep with them but I usually hug a pillow if my husband isn't in the bed. I don't see anything wrong with having a stuffy in bed.

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A.P.

answers from Dallas on

I have never been too old to sleep with stuffed animals... I am 70 years old..

Updated

I HAVE NEVER BEEN TOO OLD TO SLEEP WITH STUFFED ANIMALS... I AM 70 YEARS OLD..

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B.

answers from Augusta on

nope , my 8 yr old almost 9 yr old sleeps with a whole bed full of them, and I my self sleep with one when hubby is gone, just helps me sleep better.

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C.W.

answers from Austin on

heck no!LOL! Im 24 and I still need a stuffed animal (or pillow, or hubby) to wrap my arms around and cuddle while I sleep. I can't sleep without holding on to SOMETHING... As long as he's ok with sleeping with just one I would let it be. :)

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K.S.

answers from Kansas City on

I think, who cares?! He's only seven! Let him be a little kid. I would let my kid sleep with as many animals as he wanted. I don't see why this is a big issue with you.

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K.L.

answers from New York on

My son is 8 and does the same thing. He has one bear that he sleeps with every night that my parents gave to him. I did the same thing when I was that age and eventually stopped when I was a tweener.

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L.U.

answers from Seattle on

I think that my son still sleeps with all his buddies and it doesn't bother me at all! He has about 10-15 that are in bed with him all the time. I don't feel the need to make him grow up any faster than he already is, he just turned 8.
L.

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J.C.

answers from Columbus on

I think it's fine for him to have stuffed animals up to any age. I sometimes hug a pillow at night, which is kind of like a stuffed animal :)

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D.K.

answers from Washington DC on

I think....what's the issue here? It's totally okay for them to still be sleeping with stuffed animals at this age. I know I always did. Shoot, I even had a few no one knew about into my teen years. Nothing wrong with that. Let them be kids.

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K.A.

answers from San Diego on

My 9 going on 10 yr old son still has so many on his bed we have to make him take some off to make room for himself sometimes. I'm almost 40 and still sleep with my teddy :)

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T.S.

answers from Eugene on

I slept with my stuffed animals until I was in college--I actually brought one with me. No maturity problems at all--I just liked them. He's fine. They are cuddly. Nobody really likes to sleep alone, do they?

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L.C.

answers from Kansas City on

i think he is fine. I am 25 and i still sleep with a stuffed animal. Why? because its comfortable! i like to position my arms and head a certain way when i sleep that a pillow just doesnt work with. Putting my arms around a stuffed animal helps position my arms so i dont get cramps in them and leaning my cheek on it and my head on the pillow helps support my neck. its just comfortable!

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A.G.

answers from Houston on

My daughter has two rabbits, both named emma, they were given to her on two separate easters, she sleeps with them every night. I never gave it a second thought.

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K.U.

answers from Detroit on

My stepson had his Teddy to sleep with him until he was around 12 or 13 - his parents divorced when he was 4, so I don't know if that had something to do with it (his brother also had a favorite stuffed toy for sleeping but gave it up around 8 or 9). For a long time Teddy had to go everywhere we went, but at least we were able to convince him to let Teddy stay in the car (telling him that really, Teddy will be safe that way and not get lost). One of the daughters of friends of ours is 13 and still has her baby quilt that she sleeps with. It had been re-sewn and patched up several times, and finally reached a point where it was beyond repair. So now it is all bundled up with rubber bands and she calls it her "rag nugget".

I asked my cousin once, who raised 4 boys, how long they should be allowed to sleep with their security objects and she replied, "As long as they want to!" Now I have a little 3 yo girl of my own who has her own pink teddy bear and part of me hopes she will never give it up! She also has several more stuffed animals in her bed that tend to rotate in and out - sometimes she randomly decides she needs a certain other bear, or her sock monkey, or Elmo, or whatever to be part of the rotation. Maybe she thinks of them as an army of friends that keep monsters away. :)

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S.B.

answers from Kansas City on

I turn 30 in December and still occasionally sleep with my stuffed tiger. It's just a comfort thing.

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L.D.

answers from Las Vegas on

My 7-year old son likes sleeping with his stuffed tiger, elephant or otter every night. I don't plan on stopping it anytime soon. As far as I am concerned, it gives him comfort and who cares if he sleeps with a stuffed animal when he is 7 or 17. When he is 27 and ready to get married, then that will be a different matter but I suspect that he will drop the stuffed animal habit on his own well before he reaches adulthood.

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C.R.

answers from Seattle on

I still have a stuffed dog that I sleep with... He only leaves the bed when my daughter wants to sleep with "Mommy's doggy." I don't see a darn thing wrong with it!

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C.C.

answers from Fresno on

I haven't read your other answers, but I think this is so normal. My daughter and her (boy) cousin are both turning 8 soon, and they both sleep with tons of stuffed animals. It drives me nuts because my daughter has to totally disassemble her bed in order to make the bed in the morning (because the stuffed animals seem to get shoved way under the covers all over the bed). But whatever, if it helps them feel safe at night, then I guess we will just deal with it, huh? ; )

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K.C.

answers from Philadelphia on

You know that scene in E.T. where they hide ET in all the stuffed animals in the closet so the mom doesn't find him? That's my daughter in her bed - I swear, sometimes I can't find her because she's so surrounded by those things! I have no problem with it, she sleeps very well and is a perfectly well-adjusted child. Plus she looks so cute huddled in all that furry plushness!

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O.S.

answers from Birmingham on

It's never too late to sleep with what ever you love. Some of us like a fluffy pillow, very plush comforter, flannel sheets and/or stuffed animals .. the list of what makes us happy could go on and on. That would be "one of the battles" that you don't bother to fight with him. Let him snuggle with whatever helps him to get a good night of rest and you can just smile when you see him expressing his affection. Honestly, I think it is showing you that he is very full of love and will be such a great guy the older he gets.

S.R.

answers from Tulsa on

Your child is fulfilling a very natural need to want something to cuddle with at night. Would you rather have him in bed with you? I had a favourite teddy I slept with until I replaced him with my husband! :) Oviously I didn't take him with me to sleepovers or tell my friends I still slept with a Teddy! Bottom line, if the behaviour isn't hurting anyone, why are you concerned? Believe me, he'll give it up as soon as he's ready, as long as you don't make a fuss about it and NEVER "shame" him by saying things like "big boys don't sleep with toys"! Most "big boys" don't sleep alone either!

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M.M.

answers from Chicago on

My older son STARTED sleeping with stuffed animals at 7, we were pleased because he ignored them until then... I think it is fine, child needs transitional objects. Just do not take them away, please.

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A.C.

answers from Cincinnati on

I gave up my teddy when I moved in with my husband and there wasn't room for her in the bed. ^_^

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K.S.

answers from Dallas on

There is no set age for sleeping with stuffed animals. The question is there an underlying fear associated with not sleeping with the stuffed animal. I believe this needs to be address. If there is no fear, just likes the cozy feeling, than he will grow out of it at his own pace.

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R.M.

answers from San Francisco on

No, it's not too old.

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C.C.

answers from Tampa on

I slept with my stuffed dog up until recently when he accidentally got tangled up in the sheets and went through the wash (which he's MUCH too fragile for).

B.C.

answers from Norfolk on

I have a small bear I sleep with. It doesn't bother my husband - he bought him for me. I'm 48. I don't smoke, drink, gamble or sleep around. If sleeping with a stuffed animal is the worst vice I have, at least it's harmless.

C.B.

answers from Kansas City on

thank you for reconsidering! this is so not a battle needing fought. let him be. good job mom!

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M.G.

answers from Chicago on

It's completely fine! I wouldn't worry. It's just a comfort thing for him.

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H.H.

answers from Hartford on

I know you already figured it out but I wanted to add, w/o reading your answers that I am 31 and when my grandma died I dragged out the lion my dad bought me when I was born and snuggled on the sofa w/ it.....not something I do all the time that was the last time I have done that in about four years but you get my point

J.T.

answers from Oklahoma City on

There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with a 7 year old sleeping with stuffed animals!

V.W.

answers from Minneapolis on

I still have a small collection of stuffed animals and my baby blanket. I don't sleep with all of them every night, but I do choose one to sleep with each night. On nights that I sleep over at my boyfriend's house he always laughs at me when I pull out my blanket or stuffed animal, but as long as I cuddle with him too he doesn't mind. Lol.

J.G.

answers from Fort Smith on

My son is 12 and still has a teddy bear he sleeps with, unless he's spending the night with a friend or having a friend over. He's a completely normal, A-student, plenty of friends, healthy and active 7th grader. He's just attached to this particular teddy bear. I say, if it helps him sleep then leave him alone. Just make sure the animal is washed regularly, like each time the sheets are washed.

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B.M.

answers from Dayton on

35% of adults still sleep with stuffed animals and other comfort items. It is human nature to want a companion.

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