My Dream Vacation is Not Sleeping On Dinosaur Sheets
My child’s room doubles as a guest room when we have guests in town.
How can I make it work for both- Is there a way my child can still have a room they love but that isn’t a total turn off for the guests we love hosting?
(My child joins us in our room when we have guests in case you’re wondering.)
A., from Venice, CA
I suppose that depends on who your guests are, how often this happens, how long the guest is staying, and if your child minds vacating his/her bedroom on demand. In general, I think there might be another scenario for guests that is perhaps more ideal than camping out in a kiddo’s room- I’ve rarely seen a child’s bedroom that would be conducive to a comfortable guest’s stay. The chaos of kid-stuff, the colors, the smells, the all-around non-adultness of a child’s room is just not relaxing for a pleasant stay (unless you plan on a total room pack-up/ put-away/ virtual makeover before the visit. Honestly, kids kind of mark their territory like wild animals, but they mark it with stuff. Stuff everywhere. That’s what they do. And should do.
While a momentary inconvenience to them (and to everyone else) is not the biggest deal, as well as possibly a good lesson on “sharing,”putting other people’s needs first, and blah blah blah- if I was a guest at your house, I’d rather stay on an air mattress in some corner instead. Or what about one of those sleeper chairs? It’s like a pull-out sofa, but it’s a twin-size sleeper in a club chair. That could go many places. Or how about a small, redecorated trailer you could transform into a “guest house?” Or a cute mini-shack/shed?
I would say unless you can create a dedicated guest- friendly room or area, I would much rather stay at a local hotel, than in strangely-odored child’s room on their rocket sheets, my phone charging next to their Crayon box, stinky goldfish bowl, and dinosaur collection. I’d feel like real space invader and couldn’t relax- couldn’t wait to get out of there. That’s no way to visit someone.
I haven’t even touched on how your child might feel, which could range from confused to angry to rageful at the violation. Children have strong feelings about their perceived private spaces since they can control little else in their lives. Their rooms are sacred, safe areas- violating or disrupting their spaces can be an (unintentional) act of aggression. Why do it if it’s not necessary?
Depending on how a child is “wired,” booting them out of their room, so that some odd-smelling hairy adult can take it over, is an affront. (I often use astrology to understand what makes a person feel comfortable and safe.) You could be setting yourself up for some unnecessary stubbornness, and acting-out…why go there if you don’t have to.
We are all essentially animals, needing a safe den to rest and recuperate from the day. If you are going to open your shelter to host another animal, make it a nice-smelling, cozy place so that they can enjoy their visit. Unless you don’t want them to return, in which case, make your child your unwitting co-conspirator, and put the unwanted guest on the rocket sheets next to the goldfish bowl and crayons.
If you need some clarity, some change, or a refresh either inside or out, you’re in the right place. Aubrey Thorne is an astrologer, integrative coach, and feng shui designer in Los Angeles. She works with clients all over, both in-person and online. Feel free to contact Aubrey to ask a question or to schedule a consultation.