How can I get dd to SLEEP earlier? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 10 Old 09-12-2011, 06:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not sure whether this is a discipline issue or a sleep issue, so I'll start with sleep.

 

Dd is 7. Over the summer, we had a very loose bedtime and so the bedtime routine started about 9, and she was in bed by 10, and then she'd read/draw for an hour before falling asleep. She'd get up about 9, some days 10 if she was really tired. Most summer days this was fine.

 

Well, school has started. Dd needs to get up by 7:15/7:30 to be ready at school. (7:15 is ideal. 7:30 is acceptable.) We're on week 2 of school and dd is STILL up until 10:30 or 11. The bedtime routine is starting at 8. IF she actually went to sleep by the time the routine was over (8:45-9:00), she'd be fine. But every night we find her up in her bed reading at 10/10:30. Yesterday at 9:45 I told her it was lights out. She then sneakily read under her covers until 10:30.

 

I really don't want to remove every book and writing utensil from her bedroom. That feels punitive. (And frankly, I don't have enough bookshelf space to keep them all.) But really, that's all I can think of. She has a radio to listen to as she falls asleep. The bedtime routine is stable and calming: pjs, snack, read to self for 15 minutes, brush teeth, have mom and dad read to you for 15 minutes (this gets us the 'required' 30 minutes of reading for school - though in reality dd reads for several hours a day), prayers, bed. This routine has worked for years.

 

She's doing OK getting up, but early evenings are hell because she's out of reserves. Even getting out of the house yesterday at 9:30 am for church was hard.

 

For other reasons, I'm not in a position right now to deal very well with a tired and highly emotional child. I NEED her to sleep by 9:30. (9 would be better, but if she slept 9:30 to 7:30 that would be 10 hours and OK. 11 would be better, but I'm not sure I can get her to sleep by 8:30.)

 

Help?!


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#2 of 10 Old 09-12-2011, 08:24 PM
 
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When you say "she's out of reserves" does that mean she's cranky and sleepy? If so could she go to bed at that moment? 

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#3 of 10 Old 09-12-2011, 09:00 PM
 
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Could you start the bedtime routine an hour earlier? Start at 7pm, finish by 8pm and she can keep reading til 9pm.

 

 


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#4 of 10 Old 09-12-2011, 10:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by verde View Post

When you say "she's out of reserves" does that mean she's cranky and sleepy? If so could she go to bed at that moment? 


Yes, it means she's cranky. But alas going to bed then is out that moment is usually 5 pm. She'd sleep for an hour or two, and then be up all night.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by katelove View Post

Could you start the bedtime routine an hour earlier? Start at 7pm, finish by 8pm and she can keep reading til 9pm.

 

some nights. Alas,  her brother plays soccer 2 nights a week and isn't home until  8 and she won't fall asleep before he does. We're working on starting bedtime earlier, but 7 pm is unrealistic for our family for many reasons.

 

And ARGH! I just went to check on her. I had TOLD her to stop reading and drawing by 9:15 tonight. She did. Instead, she decided she wanted to put conditioner in  her hair. So I go in her room at 10:15 and guess who had a bucket of water and some shampoo in her room!! She was dipping her hair in and putting shampoo on. dizzy.gifReally?? On a carpeted floor. This is so wrong on so many levels. (Time, on the carpet, and it's not like we prevent the child from bathing!)

 

Can I duct tape her into bed? Or would y'all need to call CPS on me?
 

 


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#5 of 10 Old 09-14-2011, 11:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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shameless bump -- she was up until 11 pm last night. She was in BED at 9 pm. HELP!!!!!


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#6 of 10 Old 09-14-2011, 11:29 AM
 
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hmmmm. I think I would discuss with her that she NEEDS a certain # of hours of sleep a night and that when she doesn't get that #, you are not doing your job as her parents. Explain that her cranky behavior is a result of not getting the correct amount of sleep and that you are going to help her get more sleep. Then, tell her it's lights out at a time that you want it out absolutely. Then, if she disobeys and has the lights on or is reading or....washing her hair in a bucket ( omg....that cracks me up...sorry :) ) then she will have to go to bed EARLIER the next day to make up the sleep. My kids HATE going to bed early. So, even if it's 5 minutes after 9 pm, then she has to be in bed with lights out at 855 the next night. It may take a tough week of sticking to it AND checking on her regularly for her to get it though. 

 

Good luck!


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#7 of 10 Old 09-14-2011, 10:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parker'smommy View Post

hmmmm. I think I would discuss with her that she NEEDS a certain # of hours of sleep a night and that when she doesn't get that #, you are not doing your job as her parents. Explain that her cranky behavior is a result of not getting the correct amount of sleep and that you are going to help her get more sleep. Then, tell her it's lights out at a time that you want it out absolutely. Then, if she disobeys and has the lights on or is reading or....washing her hair in a bucket ( omg....that cracks me up...sorry :) ) then she will have to go to bed EARLIER the next day to make up the sleep. My kids HATE going to bed early. So, even if it's 5 minutes after 9 pm, then she has to be in bed with lights out at 855 the next night. It may take a tough week of sticking to it AND checking on her regularly for her to get it though. 

 

Good luck!

 

We've had the 'cranky behavior from lack of sleep' discussion ad nauseum. I think that your plan is the next step. (Yes, the washing her hair in a bucket is funny... but still...). She will HATE to go to bed earlier. She's remarkably resistant to bribes (a.k.a rewards). I hate to threaten the child, but she's got to change. I've been ill, so the monitoring hasn't been possible and probably won't be for another week.

 

My first tactic though, was to give her melatonin for a few days to 'reset' her sleep clock. I gave her some at 9 pm tonight and she was out cold by 9:30. I'll do this for a few days and then taper down the melatonin dose and see if her old habits reappear. If they do, I'll assume it's partly behavioral. I don't really want her on melatonin every night.

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#8 of 10 Old 09-25-2011, 09:39 PM
 
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I feel for you - I am having the exact same problem with my 6 y.o.. She has been staying awake till 11:45 or 12, and I start bedtime around 8:30 with bath, reading, etc. She shares a room with 8 y.o. sister who falls asleep way before her, but lately she's been keeping her up too. It's driving me nuts, because she will not stay in her bed, she wants me to sit with her, but I need to get up and do laundry and a bunch of other stuff after a certain amount of time,and she follows me around, and then I'm exhausted and ready to sleep and she's still awake and she wakes me up if I fall asleep. She is cranky and tired during the day, and she would sleep till 9:30 or 10 if I let her, but I've been waking her around 7:30 to try to shift her to fall asleep earlier. I tried melatonin one night and it did seem to help, but I feel a little unsure about giving it to her again. 

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#9 of 10 Old 09-28-2011, 02:20 PM
 
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 Is she introverted? I am and honestly even having a 9 year old that I'm having to homeschool daily and a toddler that will be up at 5am no matter what I still can NOT get to bed before 11pm and wont fall asleep before 1-2am.. The night is "my time" I decompress I go through the day in my mind I plan the next day.. As a child I was the under the covers reader and the awake for hours past my bedtime thing.. and yes got crazy ideas like now would be a good time to wash my hair... ( I still do )

 What really helped me... To have all the get ready stuff way way earlier like having my parents read to me before dinner having PJs on by dinner teeth straight after.. Then having the finial bedtime being little more than a quick kiss and a prayer and an hour alone to jsut think and settle having all the stimulation right before of reading and music and all that was nice but too much it was appreciated but didn't allow my mind and body to unwind.


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#10 of 10 Old 09-28-2011, 07:53 PM
 
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Oh I feel your pain, sister.

 

My 8 yr old is up reading in her bed now as I type - it's 10:51 pm. I was laying with her to try to get her to fall asleep but it wasn't working and I just lost it and yelled at her and now I feel guilty.

 

My problem is that she wants one of us to lay with her until she's asleep - which would be fine if it took her 15 min. to fall asleep and she konked out at 8 pm - but when it takes hours and it's not till 11 pm - basically DH and I never see each other.

 

(As an aside - DH refuses to do anything to press the issue with her. I'm at the point where I could just say, "look sweetie - it's time to go to bed," and deal with the drama queen fit that follows ... But that's another story.)

 

So anyway - I have no good advice for you ... but you're not alone!


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