Epic IKEA "Family Bed Hack" Creates Internet Firestorm

Photo Credit: Elizabeth Boyce

One Texas couple's decision to build a "family bed" to share with their five children has gotten a lot of attention recently. And not just because blogger Elizabeth Boyce managed to hack together two IKEA loft beds to create one epic family bed set up. 

Instead, the Internet has been overtaken by shock and awe at the idea of a family sharing a single bed. Never mind that family beds are actually the norm in many other cultures, Boyce's blog has been overrun by concerned citizens who are desperate to protect her sex life. So much so that, after her post on Facebook was shared 175,000 times, Boyce created an FAQ about her decision to bed share that is a must read. For people so concerned about boundaries, it's amazing how personal their questions for Boyce have been!

As a mother of seven children myself, who also once owned two of those IKEA loft beds for my daughters, I'm mostly just impressed that Boyce was able to turn those fuckers into ANYTHING useful. I gave our loft beds to two friends and both of them now hate me for it. Easy to assemble they are not, so props to Boyce for turning them into something useful and even stylish.

What should never be in question is the safety and appropriateness of a family bed. While it may not work for all families, it works for some families. My 5-year-old twins still crawl into bed with me almost every night and my 7-year-olds often sleep with their big sister, too. Children are ready to sleep independently at very different ages, and it's pretty bizarre that our culture is simultaneously obsessed with the importance of sleep independence for children and bed sharing for adults. If intimacy is so critical in bed together at night for married couples, why are we so surprised that children seek out intimacy at night, too? Our need for security doesn't end when night begins, and meeting our kids' need for security helps to create independent, secure adults. 

Although my foray into a family bed petered out quickly a few years ago, after I realized that a few hours of solitude before a child foot ends up in my face is critical to my sanity, I respect the fact that the world is comprised of people who aren't EXACTLY LIKE ME. So, while I'm not going to be building a family bed anytime soon, I applaud Boyce for doing what her family needs now, and in the future, whatever that may be

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