Sleepovers? To do or not to do? Tim Challies has some thoughts

Tim Challies wrote a good piece on whether to allow your child to sleep away overnight at a friend's house. He and his wife have their own reasons that he shared in a blog essay as to why they don't ever allow their young children to sleep overnight at another person's house.

Why My Family Doesn't do Sleepovers
Before my children were even old enough to ask, Aileen and I talked it through and decided we would not allow our kids to do sleepovers. Now let’s be clear: there is no biblical command that forbids them, so this was not a matter of clear right and wrong, but a matter of attempting to act with wisdom. We determined we would make it a family rule: ...
Then the piece blew up. He was astounded to find that three quarters of million people looked at it in just inside of week. And the comments section blew up too. He bemusedly said that he never quite knows which of his blog essays will generate such reaction, but usually a person can kind of tell. a On the sleepover one, though, he had no idea it would generate controversy and also such encouragement. Read his second piece here:

6 Reflections on Sleepovers
I didn’t see this one coming. After over ten years of daily blogging, I tend to have a pretty good sense of which articles have the potential to cause a reaction and which articles have the potential to fizzle. I might have guessed that an article on why my family doesn’t do sleepovers would have attracted a few more readers than usual, but I wouldn’t have believed that in its first week it would be read by nearly 750,000 people. But it was, and I found myself wondering why.
Here are some other moms and dad bloggers with thoughts on the subject of sleepovers.

Rethinking sleepovers

Today's Christian Woman shares some pros and cons in this article

Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis shares a situation of how he handled when his daughter was asked to go on a sleepover birthday party. Scroll down.


  1. I heard this being discussed today on Wretched Radio and my ears perked up. We have had a family rule for years that we "don't do sleepovers." I haven't read the Challies article yet but I'm glad that the issue is being raised. This will probably sound grouchy but I wish that people would stop inviting our kids to sleep over because when we say no it always feels so awkward. It would be nice if more people said they don't do sleepovers, too. There are plenty of people who we would feel comfortable allowing our kids to sleep over at their houses but having a blanket rule eliminates having to constantly make decisions on an individual basis which would inevitably lead to compromise. I think kids should be able to get their fun in during the day and sleep in their own beds at night. The things I got into at sleepovers were not innocent and that was decades before the internet was in everybody's pockets. Melissa

  2. Hi melissa,

    Well said! And that is EXACTLY what Challies said! LOL, you're on the same wavelength. He said that in his research so many people said they were exposed to porn for the first time at a sleepover.

    Also, he said that one of the reasons the article blew is us the landslide of parents writing in saying that they don't do sleepovers either but felt like on one else had the same philosophy they did and they'd felt so alone. Do take some time to read his essay, it isn't long and I thought it was really good. Both of them, in fact.

  3. Elizabeth,
    THANK YOU for the link to the Challies article, it was so affirming and supportive for us. I shared it with my husband as we have just been discussing this very topic!!! Our kids are 12 and 14, and when they were little I kind of was able to just keep them somehow unaware of sleepovers. I didn't want to allow them b/c I am very protective of my kids, AND I didn't' want to deal with how tired they would be. When they each turned 10, I let them have a birthday party sleepover at our house. My son, just slept over at a friends for the first time a few weeks ago. We have decided we are not going to really allow sleepovers (with some exceptions) for the reasons Tim listed. My MAIN concern, especially with my son, is that he will be exposed to porn. So many kids have smart phones with internet (WHAT IN THE WORLD ARE PARENTS THINKING?????) and I don't want him to have a struggle all his life because of what he has put in his mind. We have 1 computer in the house, in the kitchen, and they have to log into it with me allowing it, to use it. We have also been very careful about what they watch, listen to and read. I didn't do all that protecting to have it thrown out the window at a sleepover. I am so glad that people are talking about this, and that I don't stand alone!


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