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The heartbreaking story behind a widower’s approach to room sharing


Brandon Janous via Facebook

Cerith Gardiner - published on 03/23/23

After losing his wife to cancer, Brandon Janous sees the reality behind why his kids need to sleep in his room.

For lots of parents, one of the most difficult things to contend with is bed time. Whether it’s an often exhausted child refusing to go to bed, or a child who feels insecure at being in their own bed for the night, it’s a moment that can cause friction in many households.

To deal with this situation, many parents turn to the myriad of parenting forums offering up conflicting advice. But this can lead to further tension.

However, one father, Brandon Janous, shared his family’s situation — which puts everything into perspective.

In the description of his photo, Janous explains how his kids all sleep in his bedroom despite the fact that they each have a bedroom. As he points out:

“We live in a 4-bedroom home. And this is us. Every night and every morning. This is us. I used to fight it. I used to tell them that this wasn’t healthy. I’d tell them that they’d get better rest in their own beds. To give it a chance. That their beds are more comfortable than my floor. It never worked. No matter what I said.”

And the points he makes are ones so many parents battle with. We often think that room sharing isn’t “healthy” for our child’s development.

But the dad of three goes on to share that when his wife Rachel was hospitalized a few years ago, the only place he wanted to be was by her side:

“No matter what anyone said, by her side is where I was going to be. There was no place where I felt more safe, than on the floor, right next to her. I don’t fight it anymore. It’s been almost 2 years since they lost their mommy. In that time it’s become pretty clear that by my side is where they are going to be. And that to them, no place feels more safe, than on the floor, right next to me.”

And this message is one that all parents who have their children in their room (and feel guilty doing so) can hold on to. Their children might have their own beds, but sometimes kids need to be close to their parents. Sometimes they might not be able to express this need, or understand it.

It’s truly a gift to be able to give a child the security to sleep well. And as many parents will attest, once their children are in their teens, togetherness is the last thing they’ll want!

Catholic LifestyleInspiring storiesParenting
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