The amount of times that I’ve given into my pre-school child’s incessant begging to sleep smack dab in between my husband and I in our bed is too many to count at this point. And sometimes, I am so depleted of energy and sleep deprived that I give in.
Co-sleeping isn’t ideal for us (She kicks me right in the back!), but sometimes, it’s necessary for survival. Plus, what kid doesn’t love snuggling up with mom and dad in their big, comfy bed? Not to mention how many parents of older kids have heard me complain about out midnight bed burglar and promised me that I’d miss it one day when she’s too old for that.
However, for one family, co-sleeping — even with tween kids — is still very much part of their bedtime routine.
Brandon Deal, who runs The Deal Family social media account with his wife, Meagan, revealed that his family is what he refers to as a “co-sleeping family.”
However, he points out that their sleeping arrangements are a little different and a lot more functional than what I’m dealing with at my house (aka a four-year-old back kicking ninja).
“So, when people find out that we're a co-sleeping family, they think we all pile up on one bed. That is not the case,” he explains.
First up, he shows their king-sized bed.
“So, this is our king bed. I sleep on that side. Meagan is in the middle, then little Sarah Grace right here,” he says while panning each family member’s designated bed spot.
“This little twin size bed in the foot of our bed is where McKenzi sleeps. You say, ‘Why does she sleep there?’”
He then pans the camera to his 12-year-old daughter, McKenzi, who replies, “I don't know, it's a little safer.”
Now, we don’t know whether McKenzi means that sleeping in her own bed is a little safer than being whacked in the face by a sibling’s hand or if she means that sleeping in a room with her parents feels safer.
Either answer is totally understandable.
As for Sarah Grace, the Deal parents have a solution if and when she gets “too big” to sleep in bed with her parents — add another twin bed!
“We'll get that out when we get there,” Deal concluded.
After the video went viral, several TikTok users chimed in with their own opinions on the family’s interesting co-sleeping arrangements.
“I can barely handle co-sleeping with my husband,” one user joked.
Another supported their arrangement and said, “You keep co-sleeping until those kiddos decide to sleep in their own beds ♥️”
“We co-slept with our oldest til 12, our son til 10. We lived remote in the woods, my kids are grown and amazing keep doing you guys❤❤🙏,” another echoed.
Others weren’t so sure about the arrangement, leaving comments noting that the Deal’s children would be codependent and lack independence from co-sleeping at such older ages.
“That separation anxiety is going to be intense!” one user wrote.
Another said, “As a child I know how safe it feels to sleep with your parents, but as a married woman I realize how important it is to not let my kids sleep w us.”
One user noted, “We had a rule. Unless there was blood, fire or puke, the kids stay OUT of our room.”
One TikTok user had some questions about the family’s co-sleeping habit and wrote, “How do you have alone time? How will Mackenzie gain independence in the future and sleep on her own?”
Something tells me that the Deal family has worked out these questions already and found what works for them.
Leave it to the powers of social media to turn something that seems pretty sweet and harmless into a negative aspect of a family’s overall dynamic. Let these people live in peace! If one day, my tween-aged daughter comes into my bed for a snuggle, I will not turn her down.
In fact, one time when I was a boomerang kid back from college, I watched a ridiculously scary movie alone and had to crawl into bed with my mom because I was scared out of my mind. Sometimes, kids just still need their parents, and that should be okay!