26 answers

Should Sisters Share a Room or Have Their Own?

I have two girls that are 5 and almost 3 (26 months apart). They have always had their own room but we would like to move them together to free up a room in the house. My 5 year old has bunk beds (they can be seperated) and we got these for her (them) a year ago with the idea that when our 3 year old is out of the crib that she would move in to her big sisters room. They have a big playroom so we really don't feel like they need to have their own room. However, I am not sure it will be an easy transition as they are very comfortable where they are. I would love to hear from other moms if they have done this and how it turned out. Good experiences? Bad? Any opinions on if it is good for siblings to be together or better for them to have their own space? Thank you! G.

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For now sharing a room is fine, but once the older one is a pre-teen and beyond, they really need separate rooms. If they share when they are teens, it will be a constant battle for different reasons, and teens like to spend time in their rooms alone, and also with their own friends when they come over.

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Holy smokes, it is really interesting how we modern Americans think everyone has to have their own room, even when they are little.

Anyway, I think you got good advice already; bottom line being that it is actually BENEFICIAL for young siblings to share a room, but when they hit puberty (let's say at about 12), then it becomes preferable for them to have separate rooms.

I came up in a big family, and even mixed gender rugrats shared rooms for starters. LOL

I have 6, so the 3 girls have a room and the 3 boys have a room. We have a play room, that is HUGE....all they do in their room is sleep, they have their beds and dressers. The play room has ALL the toys, a queen bed, also loft bed w/trundle, and we have a couple blow up singles and sleeping bags. When the kids truly need a night alone, they sleep in the play room. Each of their beds have trundles under them as well. when they have a friend over, they alternate, depending on who used it last, as to who gets to use it then, or they sleep down stairs in the living room w/friend. They are all very close, they fight, but I do not know a sibling that does not have some kind of spat now and again. Over all it has been GREAT. The play room is also the Guest Room. Good Luck. If you allow them to "decorate" it together, and pick out specific things like color and comforters that coordinate, Theme...it goes A LONG ways.The girls did underwater theme...hung stuff(netting and lights) on ceiling and paintings of ocean themes on walls, kinda corny for the little ones, but then the teen likes it too. The boys did pirates theme. They all get to do some painting and decorating. ..FUN!

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For now sharing a room is fine, but once the older one is a pre-teen and beyond, they really need separate rooms. If they share when they are teens, it will be a constant battle for different reasons, and teens like to spend time in their rooms alone, and also with their own friends when they come over.

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When we moved our baby (then 12 months) into her sister's room, we wanted to make it special. So we told the older one, she could have the room decorated any way that she wanted. I thought she would say "I want Princesses" or something like that. She said "I want blue walls, and pink flowers with red centers and purple polka dots" She said the same thing every time I asked her for about a week. Luckily, we had some friends who were artistic enough to make her vision a reality. After the decoration was complete, we moved them in together and they were excited about it. We had a bit of a transition with bedtimes and we had to put the older one to bed first so they wouldn't play together. Now that they are 7 and 4, we have been putting them to bed at the same time for a couple of years. It is nice that we can all read together in the same room, and then one of them just hops over to the other bed and lights out.

We are in the middle of selling our house, and the proclamation has been that they each want their own room in the new house. Too bad they probably won't get it! I also like the fact that most of their toys are in the playroom and bedroom is for sleeping. Good luck!

Well G. I have both my girls in the same room, right now and they are 12 and 9...at first it was a little hard but now they talk about everything and it has seems to have brought them closer. There are time that I over hear them talk about all kinds of things and I have it very heart warming that they confide in each other like this now. So for me I think it was a great move.

Y. S

I have 6, so the 3 girls have a room and the 3 boys have a room. We have a play room, that is HUGE....all they do in their room is sleep, they have their beds and dressers. The play room has ALL the toys, a queen bed, also loft bed w/trundle, and we have a couple blow up singles and sleeping bags. When the kids truly need a night alone, they sleep in the play room. Each of their beds have trundles under them as well. when they have a friend over, they alternate, depending on who used it last, as to who gets to use it then, or they sleep down stairs in the living room w/friend. They are all very close, they fight, but I do not know a sibling that does not have some kind of spat now and again. Over all it has been GREAT. The play room is also the Guest Room. Good Luck. If you allow them to "decorate" it together, and pick out specific things like color and comforters that coordinate, Theme...it goes A LONG ways.The girls did underwater theme...hung stuff(netting and lights) on ceiling and paintings of ocean themes on walls, kinda corny for the little ones, but then the teen likes it too. The boys did pirates theme. They all get to do some painting and decorating. ..FUN!

Hi G., I don't know any reason your daughters couldn't share a room, my sister and I grew up together, she is 8 years older,and I'm sure I was annoying. But I think they may really like it, sharing is a good thing to learn. There are so many small families that don't know how to share space, talk to college kids...it's a learning experience. I would do it!! Good Luck, Deb

I am considering doing this and my girls - 2 and 5 - are begging to do this! Not sure what reality will be like but they see it as a treat not a takeway.

My middle sister and me bonded very much so because of a shared bed room. It may make going to sleep harder on you, because they will interact when they should be sleeping.

just move them together and make it seem like the most exciting adventure and they wont make a big deal about it.
if they make a big deal about it anyway, then they really need to be in the same room together all the more!

I shared a room with my brother until I was about 11, when puberty hit. We had a huge house and plenty of room, but my parents thought it was a good idea - we learned how to share, to deal with conflict, etc. It made us very close.

My son was 3.5 when his brother was born. His bed was in the same room as the crib. Then we got pregnant with #3 and I told him that when the baby was born, he could have his own room with a queen bed. He cried and told me that he wanted to be near his brother. Now we have 2 queen beds in one room and usually, they start off in their own beds, but nearly every night, when we check on them before we go off to bed, they are in the same bed. They are best friends....even with the 3.5 year difference. (My husband is actually building a double queen bunk, so we'll see where they sleep - I'm guessing on top!)

The other night, my parents watched the kids and when we returned home, all 3 kids were asleep in the same bed and #2 had his arm over #3 and #3 was completely content in his arms.

Sometimes our older one tells me that he needs some space, so I tell him that he can hang out in his room and shut the door. I tell #2 to give his brother some quiet time. They both get it...and there's no issues. Sometimes #2 doesn't want #1 around, so I give him the same space.

I say give it a chance and they may really like sharing their room. I have 2 girls, my oldest is 3 and youngest 3 mos. My youngest is still in a bassinet in our room, but I asked my oldest how she felt about sharing a room with her sister and she was SO excited! We put the crib in her room, so now there is a crib and a toddler bed. She loves to idea of her baby sister moving into her room, and it makes life easier since we can keep our extra guest room for guests/computer/etc. They may want to have their own rooms when they're older, which is fine by me when they ask. But I love the idea they'll grow up sharing a room and that my oldest welcomed it with open arms (I've heard of little ones that are totally against giving up their space and they were only 3!) I always wished I had a sister to share a room with!!!

Eventually, at a certain age, especially for your eldest daughter....they will "need" their own room.... they develop differently and she will need more privacy and just her own space.

for now, they are still young... so it might be fine to combine them... but a child that age(s) should be talked to about it first... and asked their feelings on it... and that they know it does not have to be, "permanent." They are used to having their own room.... and might want it to stay the same. That should be respected. To me.

A playroom, is not the same as having their own room.
I shared a room with my sister growing up, we are 2 years apart. But after a certain age, it was just unbearable... we were so different from each other, we had our own preferences to things and ideas and tastes and needs for privacy and different habits... so at about the 2nd grade or so, we had our own rooms.

Some siblings don't mind being together... some do mind. Mostly, for friends I know, their children started off from the get go, being in the same room... THEN, when they were older, they each got their own room.... and this is a natural progression for children... since they develop more, change and have different needs as they grow up. AND.. .the older children get, the more pronounced the differences in age gets... developmentally. There is a big difference for example, between a 3 year old and a 5 year old. Even if it is just 2 years. For my friend, she separated her kids when her daughter was 6-7 years old... and her sibling was 2 years younger as well.
Regardless, it needs to be discussed with the children first... and have a trial period, maybe. Personally, as a child, at that age, I did not like thinking that my sense of privacy was uncontrolled or that I had no input in the matter. My sister and I fought a lot when sharing a room... and my older sister would just boss me around and push my things away and she took up most of the room. It was just frustrating. And we had a big playroom too... didn't matter... a playroom is not the same as a bedroom. A bedroom is a special place for a child.

Personally... I would leave them the way they are...

All the best,
Susan

I shared a room with my sister until I was 18 and although I only have one girl, my three boys share a room. I think that sharing a room, at least for a little while, is benificial. You get to learn how to share a space and live in close quarters with someone else. I found it benificial to me and think it will be for my children. Your girls are young enough that they should be fine. Even if they are used to having their own space, I think they'd be fine sharing a room, they may even enjoy it. My oldest boy had his own room and requested to be in the same room with his two other brothers. I don't think you'll have any problems putting your girls in the same room.

I can't help you on the mom's perspective, but as a child I shared a room with my big sister and I loved it. I think it is what we will do with our children. Once my sister hit the puberty age she got her own room. I was bummed, but it was time for her to have her own space.
Good luck with your choice!

My two sons (just about 4 years apart) shared a room for several years (after having their own rooms their whole lives). They loved it. It finally fell apart when my eldest hit middle school and he felt he needed some "by myself to think" time.

Give it a go. If it works, great. If it doesn't, you can always move them back.

Good luck!

Sharing a room isn't punishment, it's a blessing. My sister and I shared a room most of our youth, up until the early teen years. We're still very close because of it. Yes, there will be disagreements at times, but the 'working through it' really trains you to work with others as an adult. I can't tell you how many roommates I had as an adult before I met my husband (meaning we shared a house, not a bedroom!). The ones who shared a room as a child were much easier to live with than those who were given their own room. There's something magical about being able to share a room with a sibling. A closeness that just naturally happens.

I wish you the best in whatever decision you make!

My older daughters fought CONSTANTLY when they shared a room, mostly over the fact that one is a neat freak and one is excessively messy. When we finally moved to a house where they could have separate rooms they loved it, but my younger daughter dragged her blankets in and slept on her sister's floor rather than in her own bed for years, clear into her teens. There's good and bad either way. Sharing teaches them compromise and, well, sharing, but having their own room means fewer arguments over space and cleaning. What works for one family doesn't work for another. I'd say, put them together, but let each pick out bedspreads, wall decorations and such for her half of the room, so it feels special for her, and have clear rules about what goes where and who is responsible for it.

My boys share a room and they are three years apart. One drawback, they can't nap in the same room. I think they'll do fine as kids but it could be interesting when they get to be preteens.

I have a 6 yr old and 3 yr old girl. They had to share a room in the fall due to another sister coming. They have really enjoyed it and it has been good for both of them to work on not being selfish/possesive with their stuff. They play together in there alot and the big sister can no longer say stay out of my room! :) I also think they like that there is someone in their room at bed time. They both fall asleep faster, it's very rare that they talk/play. What we did was had them go play at Grandma's and my husband and I got their room ready. They each have a special corner and my mom came and painted their name above their bed. They came home and it was all done. They were really excited. If they have a playroom already it would be great for them, at least for a couple of years. Hope it goes well!

Hi, I read all your responses and can only add to the good experience. We have 4 boys ages 7, 4, 2 and 11 months. All but the baby share a room. They have their separate play room so they have no problems sharing the bedroom. In the morning they usually wake up really early and they like to play with their train set together. As long as they have a place where they also can have some "alone time" they'll be fine, they are going to enjoy it. I noticed that it taught them to take care of one another and that is a big plus.

Good luck.

I grew up in my own bedroom (only girl) my two older brothers shared and liked it till pre teens but still always were jealous I got my own room, they thought it was unfair.

I am excited to read all the positive responses though because we have a 7 1/2 and 3 1/2 and were thinking of having them share a room so they could use the other room as a playroom, we don't have one.....we NEED one.

Lst year, our oldest thought is was a fabulous idea, this year, she doesn't. Like I said, she is almost 8 and already want her own space. I am still thinking of doing it because when she watches TV, she does it in our room, not hers.

Even though I don't have personal experience, I think since your oldest is excited about the idea, you should try it. I remember feeling so alone in my bedroom while my brothers were playing together in their room so I was jealous of them too. Guess there is good and bad both ways.

Good Luck,
R.

My girls share a room and for the most part they love it. They are two years apart and they don't want to be without each other. I have the other room set up so that if they want their space they can have it but its a rarity it is used. My oldest sleeps on the top bunk and the younger on the bottom. It has worked well for us. I would say the only drawback is nap/bed time...if one isn't taking a nap and the other is it seems there is always something the one wants out of the room! Anyways...I think it would be fine if your girls want to share a room until they decide they don't want to anymore! Good Luck!

It is wondeful for siblings to share bedrooms. My sons enjoy having eachother - they are 10 & 7. I grew up sharing a bedroom with my sister and didn't want my own room until I was a teenager. Anyway, I think it promotes closeness. Kids that age don't need there own space. Think back to the days when families shared very small spaces...

My sister and I shared a room as did my brothers. My two boys shared a room. I noticed as my boys got older and started living more individual lives, that the only time that they spent together was in their room. Had they each had separate rooms, they would not have interacted as much. My mother confirmed the same thing about us growing up.

Holy smokes, it is really interesting how we modern Americans think everyone has to have their own room, even when they are little.

Anyway, I think you got good advice already; bottom line being that it is actually BENEFICIAL for young siblings to share a room, but when they hit puberty (let's say at about 12), then it becomes preferable for them to have separate rooms.

I came up in a big family, and even mixed gender rugrats shared rooms for starters. LOL

My sister and I (4 years apart) shared a room from the time I was out of my crib (I think I was 2) until she was 16. It wasn't a privacy thing, but my older brothers moved on to college and there was room for us girls to have separate bedrooms. We didn't have a big enough house for a playroom. My sister slept in a trundle bed that pushed up against my own bed so that I wouldn't roll out of bed as a little one. We could have separated our beds as we got older but never did (even as teenagers!) Yes, we'd fight (what siblings don't?) and even get so mad that one of us would lock the other out of our room. Mom would eventually resort to making cookies to entice the mad one (usually me) to unlock the door. We never knew any different, so we never knew that we were supposed to have our "own space". Even after we had separate rooms, I'd get my sleeping bag and sleep on her floor half the time. We drove my mom crazy with our "slumber parties". I can still hear her yelling, "GO TO BED!" And when my brothers came home for summer break, they'd have to share a room with bunk beds and they survived. Your girls will be fine as long as it's fun and you don't let them think that sharing a room is a bad thing. Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but why do children need privacy (except from their parents!)?

My girls are 26 months apart also, currently 2 and 4. They have always shared a room and I don't think they would have it any other way. They giggle and play a bit at bed time (they stay in their beds for the most part but throw toys back and forth and pretend to read) but I just put them to bed a little earlier so they have time. They love being together and I feel like that supports the type of relationship I hope they will share as they grow.

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