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A Psychologist's Thoughts on Clinical Practice, Behavior, and Life

Sleepovers Are Now a Battleground

An article about sleepovers in the March 30, 2023 issue of The Wall Street Journal ("Sleepovers Are Now a Battleground - Parents split on slumber parties, once a rite of passage — 'I've had parents ask me if we have a water filter'") aroused reader comment. Having long treated children, I've gained insight into this parent dilemma. What it comes down to is knowing your child's and your comfort with sleepovers, and how well the other parents are known. Which can be tricky when parents feel the need to interrogate them about the presence of animals, the storage of guns, and potential allergic substances. For a parent to be concerned about real potential dangers is not "helicopter parenting." I've heard of life-threatening allergic reactions which would terrify even the least risk-averse parent and remember as a child visiting a friend's home and his pointing a gun at me (a real not toy gun). Contrary to popular belief, sleepovers are not needed for a child's healthy personality development. Not until they're adult and it's with a potential mate, of course. Nuff said.

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