How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover


Sleepovers can be a lot of fun, but your mom may not be as excited about the idea as you are. Your mother may think that you aren’t old enough, or be nervous about something going wrong with a bunch of kids in her home. Set her at ease by presenting her with a small guest list and compelling list of reasons for you to host a sleepover. If she still isn’t open to the idea, consider asking her about having a late-night gathering where your friends don’t sleep over. Overnight programs and backyard camping are other solid alternatives that you may want to bring up as well. If you keep your cool and demonstrate that you’re old enough, you and your friends will be having some late-night fun in no time!

Part 1
Building an Argument

Building an Argument on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Think about why you want to have a sleepover and write down a few reasons on a piece of paper. Write down that you want to strengthen your friendships and have a fun time with your friends in a safe environment. Consider what skills you’ll learn from a sleepover, like how to become independent and deal with other people’s differences in a controlled environment.[1] Your mom probably had sleepovers when she was your age, so a reason like, “It’s a rite of passage when you’re young!” is perfectly reasonable. Possible reasons include strengthening friendships, getting new experiences, and learning how to host friends in your home.

Building an Argument on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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When you tell your mom that you want to have a sleepover, their first question is going to be, “With who?” Ask a few close friends if they want to have a sleepover ahead of time, and write down the names of any friends that say yes. Try to keep the guest list between 2-4 friends for your first sleepover.[2]Tip: To increase the odds of yourmom saying yes, stick to friendsthat are the same age and gender.If you’re 10 years old and aboy, only invite other10-year-old boys.Tip: To increase the odds of your momsaying yes, stick to friends that arethe same age and gender. If you’re10 years old and a boy, only inviteother 10-year-old boys.Tip: To increase the odds of your mom sayingyes, stick to friends that are the same ageand gender. If you’re 10 years old and aboy, only invite other 10-year-old boys.Tip: To increase the odds of your mom saying yes, stick to friends thatare the same age and gender. If you’re 10 years old and a boy, onlyinvite other 10-year-old boys.Tip: To increase the odds of your mom saying yes, stick to friends that arethe same age and gender. If you’re 10 years old and a boy, only invite other10-year-old boys.

Building an Argument on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Even if your mom is already friendly with your friends’ parents, try to get their contact information ahead of time. Your mother will have to coordinate pickup and drop-off times for the sleepover with your friends’ parents, and having their phone numbers readily available will make this process easier.[3] Even if you know your mom already has the phone numbers of the other parents, get them anyway. This will show her that you’re serious about having a sleepover and will demonstrate that you’re mature enough to host one.

Building an Argument on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Where will everyone sleep? What time will you be going to bed? Are there any games that you’re going to play with your friends when they sleep over? While your mom may set limitations on a lot of these questions, write out a few initial ideas to show her that you’re capable of organizing it yourself.[4] To avoid people fighting about who gets a bed, say, “We can have everybody sleep on the floor in sleeping bags!” Sardines, hide and seek, board games, and card games are all excellent activities for a sleepover.

Building an Argument on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Once you’ve got a few reasons that you want to host a sleepover, a guest list, and some plans for the night, practice presenting the information out loud. Walk through each part of your proposal by saying it out loud in your room. Practice in the mirror to see how you look when you’re presenting.[5] If you get scared when talking to your mother about something you want, try to memorize the first couple of sentences. Start with something like, “I would like to talk to you about having a sleepover. I think that I’m old enough to handle having a few friends over, and this is my idea. I would like to invite Lisa and Sarah and their parents said it was okay. We will go to bed at a reasonable time and will sleep in the living room together.”

Part 2
Talking to Your Mom

Talking to Your Mom on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Don’t bring up your idea first thing in the morning or as soon as your mom get home from work. This will make her less likely to hear you out, since she won’t be ready to talk. Instead, find a calm time during the day to bring up the subject. Politely ask her if she has some time to talk to you before stating your case.[6]Tip: Pay attention throughout theday to see if your mom is in agood mood or not. If she’s beensmiling and laughing a lot,it’s probably a good day to askher.Tip: Pay attention throughout the dayto see if your mom is in a good moodor not. If she’s been smiling andlaughing a lot, it’s probably a goodday to ask her.Tip: Pay attention throughout the day to seeif your mom is in a good mood or not. Ifshe’s been smiling and laughing a lot,it’s probably a good day to ask her.Tip: Pay attention throughout the day to see if your mom is in a goodmood or not. If she’s been smiling and laughing a lot, it’s probablya good day to ask her.Tip: Pay attention throughout the day to see if your mom is in a good mood ornot. If she’s been smiling and laughing a lot, it’s probably a good day toask her.Approach your mother and say, “Hey mom! Do you have a few minutes to talk about having a sleepover? I really want to have one here and I have a few ideas.”

Talking to Your Mom on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Your mom probably had sleepovers when she was your age. If you can get her to think back to her childhood, she may be more likely to give you what you want. Ask her questions about what she did at sleepovers when she was your age, and if she has any experience hosting sleepovers when she was a kid.[7]

Talking to Your Mom on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Use your indoor voice and take a breath between each sentence to collect your thoughts. Staying calm while you’re presenting will show your mother that you’ve thought through your ideas and care deeply about having a sleepover. If your mom is initially against it, don’t worry. If you can show her that you’re capable of having an adult conversation, she may change her mind.[8]

Talking to Your Mom on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Don’t throw a temper tantrum if the conversation doesn’t go exactly the way you want it to. If your mother initially says no, wait a couple of days and then try asking her again. She may change their mind over the course of a few days, and asking her again may show them that you’re serious.[9] If you lose your cool, you’re only going to reinforce your mother’s belief that you aren’t old enough to have a sleepover. If you feel yourself getting really angry, slow your breathing down and count from 1-10 in your head to reset yourself.

Talking to Your Mom on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Even if you didn’t get what you want, thank your mom for hearing you out. If your mother wants to negotiate, be open to modifying your plans. A sleepover at your house will impact your parent too, since they’ll have to prepare their home, coordinate with other parents, and monitor you and your friends, so be willing to accept that they may change your plans.[10] Say, “Thank you for taking the time to listen to me” at the end of your presentation.

Part 3
Proposing Alternatives

Proposing Alternatives on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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If your mother isn’t comfortable hosting a sleepover at your house, see if she’d be alright with you attending a sleepover somewhere else. If the problem is that she doesn’t want to supervise you and your friends, she may have no problem with another parent watching over you.[11]Tip: Before you talk to yourmother, ask your friends if anyof their parents would be willingto host a sleepover if yourparents say no. This way you canpropose an alternativeimmediately without having tohave a separate conversation.Tip: Before you talk to your mother,ask your friends if any of theirparents would be willing to host asleepover if your parents say no. Thisway you can propose an alternativeimmediately without having to have aseparate conversation.Tip: Before you talk to your mother, askyour friends if any of their parents wouldbe willing to host a sleepover if yourparents say no. This way you can propose analternative immediately without having tohave a separate conversation.Tip: Before you talk to your mother, ask your friends if any of theirparents would be willing to host a sleepover if your parents say no.This way you can propose an alternative immediately without having tohave a separate conversation.Tip: Before you talk to your mother, ask your friends if any of their parentswould be willing to host a sleepover if your parents say no. This way you canpropose an alternative immediately without having to have a separateconversation.When she turns down the possibility of a sleepover at your place, you can immediately say, “What if my friends and I have a sleepover at Danny’s house? His parents already said that it was okay!”

Proposing Alternatives on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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If your mom doesn’t want your friends to spend the night, ask her if you can have a half-over. Invite your friends over, dress up in your pajamas, and play all the games that you planned on playing during your sleepover. Arrange it so that your friends get picked up around 9:00 or 10:00 pm instead of spending the night. This may be a good middle ground if your parents have plans the next day or you don’t have the space to accommodate a lot of your friends.[12]

Proposing Alternatives on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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If your mother really cares about her personal space, see if she’ll let you and your friends camp in the backyard. Set up a tent out back and have your friends bring sleeping bags. You can play games in the tent and hang out in your backyard throughout the night.[13] If you have a fire pit in your backyard, you can ask your mom to help you set up a fire so that you and your friends can roast hot dogs and make smores.

Proposing Alternatives on How to Convince Your Mom to Let You Have a Sleepover

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Zoos, libraries, and schools often host overnight sleepover camps for young people in their area. If your mother is totally opposed to sleepovers, she may be open to you and your friends attending an educational program in a sleepover setting. Overnight programs can be fun because they give you plenty to do in an environment where you don’t normally get to spend the night![14] Say, “What if my friends and I attend an educational program? Do you know of any at the zoo or library?”