Why I Struggled With The First Sleepover

Why I Struggled With The First Sleepover

I didn’t know whether to write about this. I don’t want it to be taken the wrong way, but in my ‘Mum eyes’ it was a big deal and it still is really.

The First Sleepover

Now, the title of the blog post is ‘The First Sleepover’. This isn’t entirely true. Little Man has had sleepovers before but at my Mum and Dad’s house. Now because they are my parents, their house is like a second home, it’s two minutes up the road and now he’s done it a few times, it’s not such a big deal anymore. Obviously, it was the first time, but now he’s done it a several times, I can handle it a little better. I still feel weird when I come home without him and I still check my phone every five minutes to make sure I haven’t missed any calls or texts, but it’s got easier.

Last weekend, the Little Man had his first sleepover at somewhere he hadn’t stayed before and I have to be honest, I didn’t handle it very well.

The Mummy Struggle

The thing is, it was totally unplanned. Little Man and his Dad went out at 2 pm in the afternoon to get their haircuts done and I was expecting them back a couple of hours later. Well to cut a long story short, I didn’t see him again that day and I think that’s the bit that I found hard.

They went to see my husband’s family and at this point, I need to add that the Little Man totally adores his cousin. He worships the ground she walks on, so when a possible sleepover during the upcoming Half Term came into the conversation, he jumped in and asked if he could stay that night. There and then. His excitement at the prospect I am told was something else.

By this point, the time was getting on and it was almost 6 o’clock at night so there was no time for him to come home and see me and I hadn’t been very well so couldn’t really go out. And not only that but I didn’t want to make a fuss. When it was mentioned to him that maybe another night would be a better idea, his disappointment was palpable. The decision was made that he could stay. His first sleepover was imminent.

I found it very hard because this was a first for him. A huge first and it was a big one for me too, as his Mum. As the one who has never missed a hug and a kiss at bedtime. Or at the very least when I’ve dropped him off to stay with my Mum and Dad. I’ve always had the ‘goodnight’ or the ‘goodbye’ and the ‘see you in the morning’. But I didn’t get that this time, and I felt so empty that I’m struggling to describe it.

Not So Little Anymore

We had a quick Facetime but I have to be honest he really wasn’t interested. His excitement knew no bounds and whilst I know I should have been happy that he was happy (and I was, in a way), I couldn’t help but feel sad that tonight, he just didn’t need me. That was a tough blow to take.

For five years I’ve been his everything and despite knowing this time would come, when it happens, it doesn’t make it any easier to handle. Mumma’s little boy isn’t so little these days and he is growing so fast and so much in every way. I know I can’t slow it down and I need to embrace it and treasure it but it’s an emotional time. This much I have discovered.



I had no fears about where he was staying. I knew he was in safe hands. He was with family after all. My problem was that I wasn’t prepared and the introvert in me, needs a plan in place. The Mum in me needed that ‘goodbye’ and that ‘goodnight’. I didn’t want him not to go. I just needed those things for me. I still don’t know if this is me being selfish. I just know how I felt.

Sleepover Success

And of course, he had a wonderful time. He tried new foods (yay!), he slept well and he came home happy. I got my cuddle on his return and I have never been more pleased to have him home with me. He got extra cuddles at bedtime too that night.

Perhaps I’m in denial. Perhaps I haven’t come to terms with the fact that my Little Man is growing up and he’s not going to want or need me as much as he once did. I know this is something that I need to deal with and I will. Next time though, I will hopefully be more prepared, maybe then it won’t be so hard.


I may or may not have made a fuss over nothing. I’m not really sure now. All I know is how I felt at the time. But what I do know is that to care that much and be that bothered, doesn’t make me a bad Mum. Quite the contrary in fact. And that’s not a bad thing, surely?


How have you coped with unexpected situations relating to your children? Perhaps you’ve avoided the first sleepover for this very reason? Perhaps you think I’m being ridiculous? Let me know in the comments. I promise not to be offended!


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  1. emptynestmummy
    9th February 2018 / 1:31 pm

    An uninvited little tear crept out when I read this! My big boy, aged 6, has started asking about sleepovers. For many reasons, but mostly because I am so desperately needy and clingy, he won’t be doing a sleepover until he is older. 26 seems a suitable age. What do you think?

  2. hampersandhiccups
    9th February 2018 / 7:44 pm

    Funny, I was just thinking about this the other day. Our oldest is only 1, but I’m already dreading that first sleep over. She stayed away one little night when we had our second baby, and that was hard enough! We couldn’t get out of that hospital fast enough to go pick her up. Although, there’s some days when I would like to just ship her out 🙂
    Katelynn, hampersandhiccups.com

  3. 10th February 2018 / 1:37 pm

    I would find this really difficult too! I’m so glad it went well though! Thanks so much for sharing with #Blogstravaganza xx

  4. 10th February 2018 / 5:22 pm

    I totally get this. My work schedule makes it so that time with my daughter can be a bit scarce sometimes and on those occasions I don’t like to share. #thatfridaylinky

  5. 10th February 2018 / 10:21 pm

    I remember when Reuben first stayed at my sister’s house. We had all been out all day and together and when we came to leave he got upset and my sister said he could stay at her house which he immediately jumped at the chance to do. We didn’t make a fuss but both Sam and I felt very out of sorts as we hadn’t planned on it happening, and I had seen him all day. To not have seen him would be a different story indeed. #ThatFridayLinky

  6. diynige
    11th February 2018 / 12:58 pm

    No sleepovers for the girls haha ! Actually I’m serious glad it went well for you Thank you for linking to #Thatfridaylinky please come back next week

  7. 12th February 2018 / 7:28 pm

    I remember growing up and constantly sleeping over at friends right from the age of 3 or 4. We had great friends who lived opposite so we were constantly at each others houses. My son had a similar time as his best friend lived next door so he was having sleepovers from the age of 4 and I never batted an eyelid. My daughter however, has been a different matter. She had her first sleepover at 6 years old with a friend from school. I felt so uncomfortable about it because I didn’t know the Mum really well and was worried how she would behave. It turns out it wasn’t the greatest success and now I’ve said no sleepovers for the foreseeable future!! #blogstravaganza

  8. 12th February 2018 / 7:59 pm

    It can feel daunting and anxiety sets in – more so when it is unexpected and you don’t have time to process the plan! But at least you knew he had a fab time!!! I remember the first time I left my daughter (middle child) for the first time over night and we went to London. I cried down the motorway but as soon as I got there I had such a fab time and knew she was in safe hands! #Anythinggoes

  9. 12th February 2018 / 8:11 pm

    Perfectly natural feelings and good to blog them out. I was just the same with my first son and when my daughter went on her first residential trip with school and now with them approaching adulthood way too fast, it is a whole heap of new worries and feelings. But we are there and we love them and we are blessed in that. #FamilyFun

  10. 13th February 2018 / 6:15 am

    Do you know, I have never even thought about this happening and just reading your post made my stomach lurch! I’m completely fine with Boo staying at my in laws but the thought of her being elsewhere and not being able to say goodnight … I don’t know how I’d cope! #TriumphantTales

  11. 13th February 2018 / 10:12 am

    This is something I struggle with. Fidget will be six in March and I loathe the fact that she wants sleepovers. It’s a real sticking point with me. She has had two so far, both with the same close friends. But I was a mess that my little girl was staying elsewhere. It’s something I need to work on. Great post.

  12. 13th February 2018 / 12:30 pm

    I’m sure I’ll be the same when my boys have their first sleepover. It must be strange not having your son in the house! #familyfun

  13. Kate@TheMumConundrum
    13th February 2018 / 3:05 pm

    My eldest two have had a few sleepovers with their Granny and their cousin, which I’ve been ok about (usually because I’ve been so frazzled it’s seemed like a welcome break) until their bedtime comes and goes and things are deathly quiet… Suddenly rather than enjoying the peace I end up wanting them to come back and make things chaotic again! It does get easier though – promise! x #triumphanttales

  14. 13th February 2018 / 4:23 pm

    I would say that my first thought is that because it was out of your hands, the decision, it frightened you a little that your son is capable of making these kinds of decisions and maybe you felt that he doesn’t need you as much as you think and he’s growing up too fast. The other side of the coin is when you want/need him to stay somewhere and he’s unable to leave your side and you feel frustrated that have your son stuck to your side all the time and you’re writing blog posts about trying to teach him some independence. Whatever happens, or however it goes, there’s always the flip side and we never feel like we’re getting it right. You did say I could be honest, I’m nothing but, but that’s why you love me so much lol

  15. 13th February 2018 / 6:01 pm

    This is perfectly understandable, especially when it was unexpected. I something’s struggle with the idea our kids are growing up so fast but it is natural #triumphanttales

  16. 14th February 2018 / 5:15 pm

    I would find this difficult too. I’ve never had a night apart from our son. He’s two so I have a little while to go to sleepovers but I might just have to host them all! #triumphanttales

  17. 18th February 2018 / 8:32 am

    Oh lovey I can only but imagine. I think I would be the same if I am honest, especially as it was unplanned and just sprang on you, after he had beeb out from midday. Oh I totally get it. That said I am glad it went well! Thanks for joining us lovey #familyfun

  18. 19th February 2018 / 6:39 pm

    They grow up so fast — I feel for you! And I totally understand. xoxo #triumphanttales xo

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