Julie, a single mom of one, isn’t worried about keeping up with the Kardashians.
She doesn’t cruise around in a $150 million jet like “climate-conscious” Kim nor does she pout her cosmetically enhanced lips in selfies like Kylie.
But, like Kourtney, Julie shares a bed with her pre-teen daughter, RK.
“Co-sleeping with your kid is completely normal,” Julie, a 50-year-old rom New Orleans who declined to give her last name, told The Post. “We’ve done it every night for the past 8 years.”
Kourtney was branded as “weird” on Twitter earlier this month after confessing that she still shares her bed with 10-year-old daughter Penelope Disick.
The admission reignited a longstanding debate about the practice of parents sleeping in the same bed as their children. For infants, both the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strongly advise against co-sleeping because of the increased risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and suffocation.
For older children, the practice is less dangerous but still divisive. Those on one side of the mattress boast of the cozy convenience and bonding benefits, while the other side say it’s odd, inappropriate and potentially psychologically harmful.
Actor and self-titled “natural mama” Alicia Silverstone, 46, was called “clueless” in July after she copped to tucking in alongside her 11-year-old son Bear every night because she believes it’s a more “loving” way to parent.
A few months later, “Yellowjackets” star Christina Ricci, 42, caused an online brouhaha when she admitted to catching Zs next to her 8-year-old son, Freddie. The actress claimed that, as a baby, he’d “scream himself hoarse” when she tried placing him in his crib.
Julie, a former public school principal and the owner of mom blog TheBossyHouse, has shared her bed with 8-year-old daughter, nicknamed RK, since birth, because of the girl’s nighttime fears and heart-related health issues.
“There were times she wanted to have her own room,” said Julie, adding that she would have preferred to have her queen-size mattress to herself all these years. “But when we’d try it out she was too scared to sleep by herself, so co-sleeping just worked best for us.”
And it’s not just moms who are passionate about the practice.
Brandon Deal, whose family of four includes wife Meagan and daughters Kenzi, 11, and Sarah, 5, has gone viral on TikTok for co-sleeping in the same bed. In a recent YouTube post, he says that it’s his honor as a father to let his kids sleep in the bed with him.
And when asked about what co-sleeping means for “alone time” with Meagan, he said with a wink that “the room where we sleep is not the only room in the house … We don’t go to bed the same time [the kids] do, so of course we get alone time. We work it out.”
Still, some scientists advise against the system.
A 2021 study on early childhood co-sleeping in pre-adolescence, kids ages 10 to 13, conducted by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, found that the practice is “significantly associated with increased behavior problems in childhood.”
But other specialists have found that no child is ever “too old” for co-sleeping as long as it’s what they desire.
“It’s the child who should choose whether they’re comfortable sleeping in the family bed or in their own room,” Brooklyn-based pediatric sleep consultant Carolina Romanyuk told The Post. “If at some point the kid says, ‘Okay, peace out mom and dad, I’m good, I want to be in my own room,’ then parents should [honor that request].”
In Julie’s home, RK made the decision to go to bed in her own room this summer.
So far, neither one of them is losing any sleep over the new arrangements. In fact, they’re both loving their new nighttime independence.
“We re-decorated and made her bed into a cozy little cave that she loves,” said Julie, who does miss snuggling with RK at times, but is glad about the transition. “She’s so happy to have her own space, and I’m even more happy to have mine.”