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Bedroom allocation for 'non-resident' stepchildren

(32 Posts)
PlinkertyPlonk Sun 07-Oct-12 13:16:10

So just wondering how people here have tackled this dilemma. We have a new baby and 3 tweenage stepchildren who visit every other weekend (2 girls, who can share, and a boy). The problem is we will soon only have 3 bedrooms. Ideally we'd like to give them a room each so they feel like it's their home. On the other hand, it seems bonkers for bedrooms to be sitting empty and not used for most of the week.

Any suggestions or advice for tackling the sleeping arrangements? I can see this is going to end in tears!

purpleroses Wed 24-Oct-12 09:17:09

Nothing "elevated" about having your bedroom turned into a living room when you're not there confused

purpleroses Wed 24-Oct-12 09:16:46

Petal - the OP here has suggested that she is thinking about doing just that, and asked about how you deal with them wanting to put things on the wall, etc. If she's got the space to do it, Blurbird's solution sounds good to me.

Petal02 Wed 24-Oct-12 08:52:38

Bluebird – whilst the arrangements you describe obviously work for the family in question, I can’t see many other households wanting to split their lounge in half to create a bedroom for ‘occasional use’ when the non-resident child could probably share a bedroom with one of the resident children when they come to stay? Again, this seems to attribute elevated status to the non-resident child, eg he/she is too important to share a bedroom.

bluebird68 Tue 23-Oct-12 23:03:07

but if they have little bits and bobs on the shelves- as mine loved doing then i'd leave those out. Its the big toys and clothes that need to go when they're not around (IMHO)

bluebird68 Tue 23-Oct-12 22:59:51

re lounge/bedroom sharing. i'd just put all their things away when they aren't there. Its what i always did when my DSS went home anyway . Pining things on walls? hmm i've never really liked anyone doing that. Pictures the kids made generally went in the kitchen for a while before being stored for posterity, better ones- i.e special art things from school went in the hallway usually so everyone could see. A pin board can work. Get the largest cork one you can find then if you don't like the look of it the rest of the week stick it behind the sofa , but i'd want to keep it up as it would probably look quite good.

bluebird68 Tue 23-Oct-12 22:50:02

i know someone who has a fairly large lounge that they divided into 2 rooms with folding doors. When his son stayed the room was divided so he had his own space and privacy- there was a sofa bed and a narrow desk, book shelves but not much else. When he wasn't around- which was usually, the room was opened up and just gave more space for the rest of the family ( 2 adults and 3 kids) . Worked very well .

Mico62 Sun 14-Oct-12 14:14:50

We bought a bigger house rather than now DH move into my house. The spare bedroom is gender neutral with a single bed with a pullout bed underneath for if his kids or anyone else want to visit - they're teens and only his youngest has stayed. We also wanted a seperate living room for if his kids wanted to spend time with their dad without me or my kids feeling we had to go upstairs to give them some privacy.

PickledLily Thu 11-Oct-12 19:05:02

Charlearose - I think you are spot on. I've been feeling guilty that they won't have their own space but actually I think if we manage it carefully they will be ok with it.

charlearose Thu 11-Oct-12 15:29:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Petal02 Thu 11-Oct-12 10:45:11

Excellent post Charlearose - very sensible advice.

charlearose Wed 10-Oct-12 21:16:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PlinkertyPlonk Tue 09-Oct-12 10:00:38

Apologies goldy, I called you nellie for some bizarre reason. I am clearly losing the plot.

"Teach the DSC not to leave small things within her reach" I am trying. Not having much success currently. I swear they are blind and can only see something the size of an elephant and only if it is sitting on them.

Agree, DD gets her own room. Baby sharing with DSDs won't work as DD wakes at least 3 times a night.

"most teens seem to see there parents as the devil itself and your just so not cool enough to be enter their lives". grin Oh so true!

So does anyone here use their sitting room as a part-time bedroom for their kids? How does it work? Do you just use a sofa bed and hide the kids stuff away when they aren't there? What about pinning stuff on the wall?

charlearose Tue 09-Oct-12 00:00:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

purpleroses Mon 08-Oct-12 20:00:57

Why don't you use the downstairs room as a bedroom for DSS when he's there, and use it as a living room when he's not?

In terms of your baby chocking on things, or catching nits - these are going to come up as issues whether or not she shares a bedroom with them. Teach the DSC not to leave small things within her reach (eg put them on a desk that she can't reach) and treat their nits!

PlinkertyPlonk Mon 08-Oct-12 19:12:30

Hello, back again. Tried to post last night but internet crashed. Grrr. Anyway, what I was going to say was...

It's a minefield isn't it!

The baby is a girl, 7m, so too young to share with the other kids (9-13yrs). We've just moved DD into her own room for exactly Gracie's reasons.

Currently the DSDs share and DSS has is own room. To answer Nellie - things they keep in their room mostly amount to dirty clothes, damp towels and sweet papers. To be honest their rooms are disgusting and I wouldn't want DD sharing their rooms (and nits) - she would end up choking on something they'd left lying around. They are lovely children but they aren't expected to keep their rooms tidy at their mums and it's a battle I chose not to fight at ours. Hmm... might be time for a rule change.

We could use the sitting room as an extra bedroom and the kitchen & breakfast room as a sitting room (it can just about squeeze in a sofa), but it seems bonkers to be crammed into one room when half the house is empty for most of the fortnight.

AandAmom Mon 08-Oct-12 15:50:30

No we all decided to replace single beds with a double cos the girls like sleeping in a double at any opportunity so we had the discussion before my DS went away, he just sometimes has an issue with my DS treating place like a hotel - glasses/plates left in room etc - and has now made an issue out of it but made me feel uncomfortable throwing in the "my house my daughter gets the en suite" statement. Wish we had never bothered now !

purpleroses Mon 08-Oct-12 15:31:48

AandAmom - if you just decided unilaterally to replace two twin beds with a double, without consulting your DP, I can understand why he might be a bit cross! Why on earth wouldn't you discuss something like that together? A double is only really suitable for one girl at a time, meaning you'd make it diffiuclt for his DD to visit during the university holidays. If one girl is a student and the other lives mainly with her mum, then neither really live with you, but no reason to try and push either of them out and tell them it's not their room any more confused

monsterchild Mon 08-Oct-12 15:27:50

And it IS his house if you are not married and it's only in his name.

monsterchild Mon 08-Oct-12 15:27:08

Have a talk with both girls, see what they want to do. Then do that. It sounds like they are both old enough to know what they want, and they both sound reasonable too! If DP gives you trouble, tell him the girls figured it out.

AandAmom Mon 08-Oct-12 15:03:55

Sorry if I should have started a new thread on here but new to this and sounds like I need similar advice. Live in a 4 bed house that we chose together but my partner of 11 yrs bought and pays bills in. I buy food and make it in my opinion home. Have my two kids living with us his two visit weekends. Have one spare room and did have twin beds in kids rooms so when partners DS and DD visited his son went in with my son of same age and his daughter went in win my DD one year older, this room has en suite. When my DD moved to Uni 5 weeks ago I swapped the twin beds for a double and explained to husbands DD she wold be in there when my DD was away but in hold my DD would have her room back and Partners daughter would use spare room or because they get on they could share the double, partners daughter fine with this. My DD came home for visit this weekend and when she had gone my partner had a go at me saying his DD should have slept in usual room, I tried to explain that that room is my daughters bedroom of 5 yrs with bits of her stuff still around and his daughter was fine as she does not consider it to be her bedroom as all her stuff is at her moms. He said I am wrong and it is his house and my DD has moved out o needs to fit in when she comes home ! I feel like I have no say and am dreading next time my girl comes home, help !

monsterchild Sun 07-Oct-12 21:21:55

I agree with brdgrl, we have this issue, a two BR home, a DSD and DS1 on the way. We have told DSD that she will always get to sleep in "her" bedroom (not on the couch) but that it will also be DS1's room too!

She is 6, and will be 7 sson after he is born. So eventually they won't be sharing rooms, but for now it's how it has to be. We do have a little guest house, and I am guessing she will want to sleep out there when she's a teen anyway!

brdgrl Sun 07-Oct-12 21:17:45

Do you mean three bedrooms total (including you and DH) or three for the kids?

I would ABSOLUTELY give the baby its (sorry, would say "his" or "her" but I don't think you said which it is) own room! It is the only one of the children living there all the time, and deserves to have some stability and security. Even if the baby is sleeping in with you at nights now, you will want a place for its things, and for naps during the day. Things change very quickly, and as gracie says, it will be harder (and actually I think more difficult for the DSCs) to take a room back later on to give to the resident child.

The DSCs otherwise end up with two bedrooms apiece (one at your's and one at their mum's), while your DD or DS ends up with none. That seems really bad precedent to me.

If it were me, the girl DSCs would share a room, and the boy would have his own. If there were ever times when a room was needed for a visitor at the same time, the boy would be expected to take the sofa.

purpleroses Sun 07-Oct-12 19:52:29

I'd let the girls share and DSS have his own room on the understanding that when the baby needs to move out of your room it shares with him. Unless there's any possibility of using a loft conversion or downstairs room?

Graciescotland Sun 07-Oct-12 14:34:54

I'm not really a fan of having the baby in your room, DH snores and wakes baby which wakes DH, it's an exercise in torture for me.

I'd be tempted to label one of the rooms baby's room straight away and deal with the fall out as it'd be more difficult to take the room away down the line. Babies for all their size have an enormous amount of stuff and it may get annoying to have it all in your room/ living room.

Is there anywhere downstairs (dining room?) where you can put a sofabed?

AThingInYourLife Sun 07-Oct-12 13:47:51


I guess for now it's not an issue when the baby is in with you.

It sounds like the older children are too big for mixed-gender sharing.

I would think that the baby will need his/her own room/nursery eventually.

Is the baby a boy or a girl?

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