Annin, Peter, Newsweek
Coed sleepovers are all the rage. Parents worry, but kids say a bag is just for sleeping in.
JUST BEFORE MIDNIGHT, LAUREN Rosner, 17, and 11 friends spilled through the door of her parents' Flossmoor, Ill., home, flushed with the euphoria of this month's Homewood-Flossmoor Community High Homecoming. They changed into cozy sweats and jeans, descended on the kitchen like a piatoon of army ants and eventually collapsed into sleeping hags in the rec room. Upstairs, Neal and Sheri Rosner slept the fairly peaceful sleep of parents who are almost entirely sure that nothing untoward is going on under their roof. Because here, and in towns all over America, the timeless ritual of the suburban slumber party has changed. It's gone coed.
Some experts see this as a natural outgrowth of the trend toward semi-platonic "group dating," an activity formerly known as "hanging out." Others attribute it to parents' natural preference to keep their children off the roads in the dangerous post-midnight hours after fall homecoming and spring prom parties. As for Sheri Rosner, she's morally certain that none of her daughter's guests misbehaved, although of course she wasn't in the room to see. But, she says, "I still would rather have them here than worry about my daughter being somewhere else."
For their part, the kids are even more morally certain that toed sleepovers don't lead to sex. …