23 answers


At what point should siblings stop sharing a room? My 3 1/2 year old granddaughter and 5 1/2 year old grandson share a room.

Thank you.

2 moms found this helpful

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

S. you have a boy and a girl. i have two girls and they are 15 and 13 lst year i gave them there own room . i dont think you have to wory just jet. he can saty in her room till he is 10 years old. at 12 years old the girl neets her own room . thats when they teenage years start. i hope this was help to you .

More Answers

I remember that my older brother (2.5 years older) got his own room when he turned 9 or 10 and I was 7. It was sad and we would sneak into each others rooms to talk into the night, but that didn't last for too long. I think 8 or 9 is about when kids really start to get into "liking" the opposite sex and so think that's probably the appropriate age. But it is an individual decision that depends largely on resources (bedrooms) available and disposition of children.

Good luck!

FT working, single mom of 4.5 year old girl.

1 mom found this helpful

I persoanlly shared a room with my younger brother of 2 1/2 years until I was probably close to 10 and it was heart wrenching for us to be parted.

I think its weird that there are laws about this and plan to have my children share a room as long as they want to. Families should do what works best for them and to have a law makes it seem as if inapropriate things WILL happen if a bedroom is shared but opposite gender siblings...again, I really think this is a bizarre mindset!

If you have legitimate concerns I would take them up with your grandchildren's parents otherwise I agree with previous post and think this is not an issue that you should be concerned with.

My understanding is that section 8 uses age five as a guideline to determine how many bedrooms a family using housing assistance must have, but I do not know of any other 'law' pertaining to it. The department of social services could also cite that as a concern if they were investigating a complaint.
In my opinion what's more important is whether the children are comfortable with the arrangement. My two older children had their own bedrooms from birth, but regularly chose to sleep in the same room. My daughter would fall asleep in my son's room during story time when they were younger or while watching TV when they were older. I don't see any harm in that.
If they must share a room because there aren't enough bedrooms, I would try to partition the room so they each have some privacy.

The law says certain things for purposes of public housing guidelines, but private families can do whatever they want! If it works for the family, it's fine. The kids I nannied shared a room till they were 7 and 5. They had their own rooms, they just liked being together - and that's ok!

I am interested in the responses to this because I have just-turned-4-year-old boy/girl twins who still share a bedroom & I assumed I would let them do so until they started asking for more privacy. I'm curious to hear more about this MA "law" that someone posted about that siblings over 5 of different sexes cannot share a room - never heard of such a thing. Doesn't sound right or possible to me. For some, it's purely a space issue in their home.....not enough bedrooms to go around. What to do then?

my kids all slept in the same room untill my daughter started kindergarten. Than she wanted "privacy"
so boy 7, girl 5, boy 3 when we put her into her own room alone.
I don't know of any "law" that says no sharing a room over age 5.

Ihave a friend who is the only girl of eight. She shared a room with her brothers for years. i thinkuntil she moved out, i don't think there was any other way to have it though.

I guess I kind of wonder the same thing. My son hated his bedroom on the first floor of our house and the baby's room is on the second with us. It's a very small room. He has sense started sleeping in our daughters room. He is 11 and she is not yet 3. He sleeps a sound night and we all feel better having them both in the same room. The house was not set up for parents to feel comfortable about thier children. So honestly I think it depends on the situation and the children themselves. A bedroom is ussually just a place to sleep, at leat it is in our home, so far.

I believe there is a law when the state is providing the housing like with foster care. By the way are you asking the question for you or because daughter/daughter in-law wants to know. Honestly if their parents aren't concerned you really should mind your own business. I have a 4 year old boy and a 3 year old girl sharing a room and wouldn't change it know even if I had more space. They need each other to sleep most nights the end up in the same bed. They are siblings there is nothing weird about it.

I completely agree with Greer. Even if we are talking about your daughter and not your daughter-in-law.

For reference, I shared a room with my younger brother until I was 11 and loved it. We have friends who shared a bedroom until they were teenagers - an older brother and younger sister. They are the closest siblings I know.


In my opinion this has to be a family by family decision. Some sibblings do very well sharing a room until they are much older, and others need their space sooner for various reasons. In my family my brother and I shared a room on and off until I was 14 and he was 12.
The majority of the time we had separate rooms, but when my parents divorced and later when my mom passed away the very best my parents could do was a 2 bedroom apartment, so my brother and I shared a room until the situation could be remedied.
Many people may look down on my parents for us sharing a room so late in our youth, but in the end it worked out great. While we were grieving the loss of our mother and living with my Dad and his wife it gave us a chance to keep a close bond that helped us adjust to the difficult changes we were facing.
There were some obstacles such as needing to change clothing in the bathroom and we had to be mindful of what we wore to bed to keep everything modest and "clean", but I remember that time with joy ~ my brother had the top bunk and I had the bottom bunk so my parents made little fabric tents so we each had our own space when we needed it, and at night we could talk until we fell asleep. It really helped us get through that rough time.
Of course when I got my own room after about 2 years of sharing a room with my brother I was excited to have my own space which allowed for more privacy. (I could now change in my bedroom/do my hair make up in my bedroom etc).

Each family has very different needs. Each child is so very different. It would be difficult for me to tell you a specific age when sibblings should no longer share a room because I don't know enough about your family. If you think about your family's dynamics and think they need separate rooms soon then perhaps discuss with your grandkids parents why they chose to have them share a room at this age. Ask them what the benefits are, and what the drawbacks are. Listen to them and only give advice on the situation if they ask you for it ... even if they don't ask you then they might ask you later, and they will be a lot more receptive to your advice if they've asked you for it.
Sometimes children share a room simply because finances don't permit a bigger or differently arranged living space. Also, when children only sleep in their rooms sharing a room isn't as much of a problem as when they use their room for most of their activities.

Hope that is helpful to you.

They're fine as long as they both enjoy it, and besides, it's not possible to dictate to parents how big a house and how many bedrooms they need to have. My grandchildren are 4 and 5.5, and they share a room and the bathtub. People need to calm down about this issue. This is the age when they SHOULD be together, see each other naked, and get simple answers to very simple questions they might have. It's no big deal. Later on, as kids go to school, they will first see the issue of bathroom privacy, and that will probably be the first issue your grandchildren will face. They will tell their parents when it is an issue for them. The bedroom-sharing will probably not be an issue for a while. Personally, I think if people want to get all fired up about decency and sex, they should look at daytime soap operas, music videos, language, and inappropriate sexy clothing (especially for girls, but also for boys having their waistbands down around their butts) - that stuff is a lot more negative than a couple of innocent siblings sharing a bedroom!

I don't have a personal opinion, and I agree with others that it is a famly decision. However, for reference, I work for the state licensing foster homes, and the basic requirement is that no sibling over age 8 should share a room with a sibling of the opposite sex.
Food for thought...

S. you have a boy and a girl. i have two girls and they are 15 and 13 lst year i gave them there own room . i dont think you have to wory just jet. he can saty in her room till he is 10 years old. at 12 years old the girl neets her own room . thats when they teenage years start. i hope this was help to you .

I think it depends on the family and the children. I know my brother and I shared a room until we were about 9 and 7. There's absolutely nothing wrong with it at their ages, and there was nothing wrong with my brother and I sharing our room.

Hi S.. Children of opposite genders are not supposed to share a room after they turn 2.

I am an only child so I did not have to go through sharing a room but, personally, I would say that a boy and a girl should not share a room anytime after 4 or 5 years old. And I think that with all of the info going around today, with stories coming out that people are saying they were abused by their own brothers/sisters when they were young and never said anything until they were grown, or even experiencing natural curiosity, that is why I think there are laws now suggesting ages of when children should technically be separated.

Hi S. - I say right now.... The ages of 5 and 6 are the ages of curiosity. Sometimes games are played (my daughter played mommy and baby and we caught her nursing her little friend!)in order to "see theirs".

And, of course, if you do catch the game, it's all pretty matter-of-fact and no hysterics - or they'll both wonder what the heck all the fuss is about and then KNOW it's something they want to get right back in to when no one is looking again!

Hi S.,
I asked my pediatrician about my children sharing a room and she said that it actually creates better sharing tendencies and better neighbors for the future. I would think if there was a law about it - our pediatrician would have mentioned it. They all love sharing a room - each having their own area and personal space. Of course, we will separate them when privacy becomes an issue, but until then they are doing well. I say anything that is going to create better future generations of giving/sharing individuals must be a good thing!

There is a law in Massachusetts that boys and girls can not share a room after the age of 5.
So they should have separate rooms.

I'd love to see some feedback for this question..I have a 1 year old son and am pregnant with a second...not sure of the sex yet. However, they will haveto share a room for a while.

I would say first off they have to have seperate rooms to go to?! It makes me think sheet through the middle of the room like Marcia and Greg Brady.... remember that??
Anyway age wise I would think when the older one is around 8 or 9 he would start to think/realize that girls are icky and different and not WANT to be in the same room. If everyone gets along though I would leave it for now.
If it ain't broke....:)
Oh and as far as the people who think there is a "law".... maybe there is and I don't know about it, but that is stuipd! If it works for the family, then what is the big deal? We are not talking about 13 and 15 and they are forced into it. Lots of siblings bath together when they are 3 and 5, same gender or not. If the conern is understanding sexual content and difference, if they ask, explain it age appropriate.
To me same gender kids share rooms all the way until college all the time, does that make then turn out gay or insestual with their same gender sib?!?! of course not.

I am usually not a reactive person, certainly not with strangers. However, I came across your post and remembered you as the same grandmother who raised concerns about the amount of activities your grandchild participated in.

I have no opinions whatsoever on children sleeping in the same room. I do, conversely, have an opinion about in-laws who offer too much input on how there grown children are raising there own children.

If you are posting on these boards simply to commiserate, and then keeping your findings to yourself, that is well and fine and I commend you for seeking an outlet outside of your family to do so. These boards, after all, are a place to find opinions and comfort from a group of people going through similar things as you. However, I sense a tone of meddling underneath your post. If you are in fact planning on going back to your daughter-in-law and saying something like, "Well the other mommies on Mama source said...," that is perhaps the fastest way too ruin your relationship with you daughter-in-law, and in turn your son and grandchildren.

My own mother-in-law is overbearing, and the more she pushes toward us, the more I pull away. That is human nature. It is the fight or flight reflex. I know you must love your grandchildren very much (as well as your son and his wife, I assume). So the last thing you want is for your daughter-in-law to have to choose between fighting with you or fleeing from you.

So, give your son and daughter-in-law some space. They are the ONLY people who should make decisions about where their children sleep. And really, the only opinions they should have in mind when they make such decisions are those of their own children.

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.