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Is it advisable for a 10-year-old child to sleep in a separate room?

Q: I have seen in pictures and some psychologists have also advised that a child of age 10-12 years should sleep in a separate room. The logic advanced by them is that they want independence and the child will gain self-confidence. In my view if it is done, following effects will be there – the child of this age will have questions about sex, which if not answered, he'll try and seek them by seeing pictures or by asking friends in a wrong way. Loneliness at night will flare up their wrong deeds. Please advise.

A:It is a very good idea for a child (10-12 years) to sleep in a separate room from the parents. He will enjoy the feeling of independence and gain confidence, as you say. Many parents shift children to a separate bedroom much earlier, some, right from the start. I do not understand your reasons for hesitating. The child's questions on sex should be answered frankly and with the aid of pictures, if possible. I am not sure about what you mean by wrong way and wrong deeds. If you mean that children might masturbate (stimulate themselves), there is no great problem. Trying it out is part of growing up and does not do any harm. However, you should ensure that the child plays games and has adequate physical activity during the day. TV watching or surfing the web for sexual titillation should be controlled, of course. What you need to do is to get the scientific material (a pamphlet or book on sex education) and talk to the child about male and female sex organs and sexuality at the level of his understanding. Let him know the facts. His sharing the parent's bedroom could result in more confusion in the child's mind.

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