Sharing a room with a sibling can be a joy and a nightmare at the same time. Playing together, chatting long into the night and knowing there was someone close in case monsters came out of the cupboard, can provide some of the best childhood memories.
On the flipside, some of the best arguments and fist-fights can start between the closest of siblings when they are expected to live in close proximity. Squabbles over clothes, decorating, ownership of toys and all manner of disagreements are likely to occur.
But with a property shortage here in Australia, and many families choosing to live close to the city, space is tight and children often have to share a bedroom.
There are many benefits for sharing a room, mostly because it teaches children to share, compromise and respect each other’s feelings – as well as making use of available space, and possibly cutting down the cost of furniture!
Sharing a room can also help siblings develop important life skills. Room-sharing siblings must stand up to each other to protect their interests, yet must also learn how to negotiate and compromise so that everyone in the room has his or her needs met.
Siblings that have already learned how to live in close quarters with someone will find it easier down the line to share a room with a room-mate, a flattie or a partner.
Most experts agree that sharing a room with a sibling is generally a positive thing, and if they are of the same sex they can probably spend their entire young lives in the same room.
For siblings of mixed sex, it is easy for them to share when they are young. However, as they grow older, the need for privacy (especially around puberty) means they will need to have their own room.