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creating privacy for grumpy 10 year old in shared bedroom

(42 Posts)
dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 12:17:26

I'd appreciate some ideas as my head is going around in circles.

We were made homeless earlier in the year so are now in a very nice, but not very big, 3 bed council house. 3 kids and myself. My 2 boys (10 and 8) share the only double bedroom. My daughter (the youngest) and I have a single bedroom each.

My eldest son has never had his own room, but in our old place there were 4 bedrooms (one was a playroom for the boys) so there was at least scope for getting away from his siblings. He's now keeps going on that he wants his own room, and is rather annoyed that my daughter has one. He thinks that as he is the eldest he should have his own room- I've explained that it doesn't quite work like that! His younger brother absolutely idolises him and although they are best mates most of the time, sometimes it can get a bit much for him, and he gets frustrated that it is difficult to get some time out.

I've said that basically, there is 0 chance of him getting his own room in the next few years, and we'll just have to work on creating some sort of privacy within the set up that we have got. Which is where I get a bit stuck. The room isn't huge, about 4 x 3.5m and the window is at the far end so it can't be split without someone living in a windowless box. They don't have any furniture except lego trays and single beds with drawers (no wardrobes) so no way of creating room dividers. The boys have had bunk beds before and are not keen on having them again.

Any ideas?

Wiifitmama Sat 29-Oct-16 12:20:20

I have three children and also live in a 3 bed flat. I disagree with your setup. For us, the oldest gets the single small bedroom. They are much more in need of their own space. Youngest two share. The fact that one is a boy and one is a girl for you does not matter at that age.

Smartieskid Sat 29-Oct-16 12:21:23

Something like this could work

user1471549018 Sat 29-Oct-16 12:25:54

Another option would be for you and daughter to share the double although I know that's not for everyone! Could you get your son a small she that he could customise as his own space?

dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 12:28:55

wifit I didn't add that the boys have always wanted/chosen to share right up until we moved- they could have had their own rooms in the old house but didn't want to. Middle child doesn't want to share with youngest. The boys toys are mainly lego and mainly communal so that would create another issue if they split rooms now. Middle child is actually nearly 9…so if youngest 2 shared then eldest would have to move back in with middle child in a year anyway as it would be getting inappropriate for them to share…

smarties I like the look of the ikea shelf set up...

titchy Sat 29-Oct-16 12:29:29

You could still split down the middle and they have half the window each. The partition obviously couldn't be fixed to the window but a curtain track that bends around the window and partition might work. You'd need a competent person to make it if it was solid plasterboard on batons though.

Or you could fix a curtain track to the ceiling, again splitting the window in two, and hang a thick plain curtain off it so that becomes the partition wall. You could probably do that yourself.

dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 12:30:58

user my daughter would LOVE to share with me

I would be less keen grin but it's something to think about...

dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 12:34:14

titchy unfortunately the window is narrow (125cm) and is literally right in the very far corner of the room next to the wall with our next door neighbour. Splitting it would mean someone would be in an approximately 90cm wide space. I could probably do a curtain that let light through..

Garthmarenghi Sat 29-Oct-16 12:36:58

We had a folding wicker screen that we used to divide a bedroom. It let the light into both sides of the room, but gave privacy when it was needed. I've still got it in the garage!

lightsandresistance Sat 29-Oct-16 12:39:55

I don't think that the op should have to lose her privacy as an adult in order to accommodate a ten year old who has a perfectly good room.

I don't think putting the girl with the eight year old is right either. She would only have to move again in a couple of years depending how old she is now.

I would divide the room as above if possible but at the end of the day we can't all get what we want.

I say that as someone who has been made homeless and shared with a child for 5 years.

NapQueen Sat 29-Oct-16 12:40:26

Would your boys benefit from some time each when the room is just for them? So eldest gets 2 hours Saturday morning to use the room himself and the youngest gets 2 hours Sunday morning? Outside of these times the room is open to both?

Kidnapped Sat 29-Oct-16 12:42:42

An old-fashioned screen might work. You could position it so that it lets in some light. This kind of thing. £75 at Argos.

And you can fold it away easily for cleaning the bedroom.

It won't give total privacy of course, but it will give some.

ChippyMinton Sat 29-Oct-16 12:48:31

2 boys share here, and each have a bookshelf and chest of drawers back to back to divide the space. Lighting was an issue, so both have bedside and desk lamps so the overhead light can be switched off if one wants to sleep.

With younger ones I'd be concerned about safety and furniture toppling over, so would go with one of those Ikea shelves shown earlier, as they are designed to be free-standing (I would still fix one end to a wall though).

ChippyMinton Sat 29-Oct-16 12:49:51

Also, if noise is an issue, get them a set of headphones each.

user1477427207 Sat 29-Oct-16 12:49:51

why dont you give the children a room each and sleep in the lounge?

Kidnapped Sat 29-Oct-16 12:53:51

Why allow the OP in the lounge, user? She might get in the way of her children there.

There must be a shed outside she can use for sleeping. Best solution all round.

dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 12:58:03

nap queen I will suggest that idea to them

chippy headphones sound like a great idea

user I've got the smallest bedroom- literally can fit a single bed and some shelves/drawers no wardrobe (sloping ceiling). As I've got MH problems that are exacerbated by not sleeping right I made the decision (with MH nurse) that I needed a proper bed rather than a sofa bed so sleeping in the lounge is out.

noeuf Sat 29-Oct-16 12:58:38

We have this (same ages) and tbh nothing worked. Curtain divider was regularly swung on and ripped down, dividers knocked over or peeped round. Room not big enough to use a builder to change properly.

What worked is the little one staying out the room at times on the PlayStation downstairs and the older one chilling out up there alone.

We did consider converting under the stairs into a little den for him!

dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 13:01:44

I was also debating whether it was worth trying to convince eldest to get a high sleeper (a v sturdy one)…thinking it would be easier to get some privacy as a ladder would be in the way, and would be easier to put a curtain around the top bit being that much closer to the ceiling. Also, maybe underneath could be curtained/sectioned off for his exclusive use. But I didn't know whether it would be a bit of a white elephant….

dangermouseisace Sat 29-Oct-16 13:03:01

noeuf nice to get a bit of RL experience in there!

Eldest has asked if he could have his own shed (we do have a big garden…)

allegretto Sat 29-Oct-16 13:12:30

I wouldn't divide it at all as that just takes away space. I would let ds come into my room for a bit of privacy during the day when he needs to though.

allegretto Sat 29-Oct-16 13:13:00

A shed is a good idea!

Smartieskid Sat 29-Oct-16 13:14:41

Maybe have a shed as a play room

Clankboing Sat 29-Oct-16 13:23:08

I had 3 boys in a bedroom before our extension. My eldest son was desperate for privacy. We got a high sleeper for him and yes he did escape up to it. It was one with a desk, wardrobe and drawers underneath. From 'mrsflatpack'. It did work. No solution will be ideal tbh but that was our cheapest solution. One of my other sons likes quiet and I told him that he could go to my room if he needed peace. I set up a big rug on the conservatory floor for the youngest to play with his toys too, so that all 3 had places to escape to.

QueenLizIII Sat 29-Oct-16 13:43:37

He is 10 years old. Old enough to understand.

Possibly very gently remind him that you are lucky to have somewhere to live at all as he must know the family has had its difficulties.

Say you're sorry he doesnt like sharing with his brother but it is just the way it is.

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