Tim Challies forbids his children from going to sleepovers at friends’ houses and does not allow other children to sleep over at his home.
In a Facebook video, “Why My Family Still Doesn’t Do Sleepovers,” Challies explained that he’s doing it to protect his children from potentially dangerous situations.Hero Images
He said that neither he nor his wife experienced any harm at sleepovers when they were children, but they knew people who did. Challies continued:
“Either somebody had abused them or hurt them or they had encountered things that they should not have encountered. So for many people, their first experience of pornography was at a sleepover. Their first experience of sexuality or even drunkenness was at a sleepover.”
He called sleepovers high-risk situations because young kids are put in an environment where their friends could encourage them to do something dangerous, and they don’t have the maturity to navigate such a challenging situation.
“We didn’t want to put our children in a situation where they were young and vulnerable and still too immature, still too inequipped (sic) to know how to deal with a situation. And often I think we put very young children in situations they simply don’t have the capacity, the maturity to deal with.”
Challies said that sometimes the parents of their children’s friends were irritated with him and his wife, because they felt they were being judgmental or overprotective.
“One of the most helpful things about just saying ‘no sleepovers’ was that we never had to choose, we never had to explain ourselves. We never had to say to our children, ‘you can sleep at that person’s house, but not that person’s house.’ That was very helpful. When the parents were upset with us, we just said, ‘no sleepovers.'”
Although his children sometimes get angry with him for banning sleepovers, Challies wrote on his blog that he and his wife felt that the risks of sleepovers outweigh the benefits.
You can watch Challies’s video below: