Home & FamilyParentingHow to Keep the Peace When Kids Share the Space

How to Keep the Peace When Kids Share the Space

Dr.Sue (@TheKidsDoctor) offered some of her expertise during our #SesameSleep Twitter party. You had questions, she has the answers.

@StealsDeals asked – How do I get my two girls to sleep instead of bicker in their bunk beds all night?

Dr.Sue replied…

I would sit down and discuss why it is a privilege to share a room and bunk beds with my sister. Make it a reward that they get to share the bunks, rather than a perceived opportunity to “bug” my sister. I would have this discussion way before bedtime, when everyone is already tired and cranky. We have Sunday night Family meetings before dinner where everyone gets to talk about problems, concerns, stuff going on during the week, and I found this a good time to have this kind of discussion about bedtime expectations. I would then have consequences if they bickered and fought and consistently upset bedtime, and would even separate them if need be for a few nights in hopes that they would miss the privilege of sharing the bunks.

At their ages they will respond to positive reinforcement with sticker charts too, to reward getting along etc. You can have “The Congeniality Calendar” and when they fill up the week they get to choose a prize, such as a trip to the library or bookstore to get a new bedtime story, or out for ice cream, or maybe being able to have a friend for a play date and dinner. Every parent knows “the carrot” that their child will respond to, it needn’t be big!

For more sleep related Q&A with Dr.Sue, be sure to check out how our Twitter Party went which includes the most common sleep-related questions moms had.

If you have any questions for Dr. Sue, be sure to check out Kid’s Doctor Radio which airs every Sunday between 7:30am-8:30am central time on 103.7 Lite FM CBS Radio Dallas and the Kid’s Doctor web site.

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