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#31 of 55 Old 10-17-2012, 06:18 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by k x s View Post

 

My immediate though was 7.45 is an early wake up time for a teenager.

http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/hot-topics/backgrounder-later-school-start-times

 

 

He has to be on the bus by 7:45 - his wake up time is 7:15 - although he usually rolls out of bed at 7:35.

 

I doubt he gets enough sleep.  I tell him to go to bed, and he is always "5 more minutes, mom".  I suppose I could insist, unplug computer, etc…but it comes down to not wanting to micro-manage when a 16 year old goes to bed.  We have had numerous conversations about it.    He is by nature a night owl.  I bet he gets about 7.5 hours sleep a night.  I know he needs more.  

 

One thing we might (have to get our butt in gear) do is exercise more.  He has said he would like to take up running.  I could encourage him - maybe run with him on occasion, make sure he has the right shoes, etc.  Running may tire him out and exercise helps with ADHDish tendencies.

__________

 

In any event, it is clear many of you would wake up a teen in these circumstances…thanks for the feedback, everyone!  


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#32 of 55 Old 10-17-2012, 06:37 AM
 
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If he misses enough school, or is late enough times, the question about what happens in your home in the morning is going to be posed to you by the school.  If you know that he isn't getting up, is starting to become chronically late, or has absences due to this issue, the ultimate responsibility is going to fall on the parents, who are responsible for the children in their home.  It doesn't seem like the situation is really there, but just pointing out that saying that you sleep later than your son so you don't wake him is probably not going to be ok.  He needs help right now-he might not in 3 or 6 months, but he does now.  I'd wake him and be clear that timely attendance is part of going to school.  Sorry-might not be the answer you were looking for!

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#33 of 55 Old 10-17-2012, 08:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Every time he has been late, I have called in or signed him into the office.

 

The same day I wrote the OP, I called the office, explained we were having issues making the bus, and asked if someone could gently talk to him about it.  His guidance counsellor will.  They were actually very quick to reassure me on the phone that they appreciated that I was pro-active about the whole thing, and was keeping them in the loop.  They told me they have numerous kids who regualry show up late, disappear from school, etc...and they never hear from the parents. Suffice to say the school is not unhappy with me or the even the situation.  We do not have the "unexcused abscense" rules that exist in the States. 

 

My gut says the school does not overly care.  He doesn't do drugs, sell drugs on property, skip classes regularly, fight, swear at teachers,destroy property etc, etc.  I suspect they have bigger fish to fry.  wink1.gif  I am concerned because I don't think regularly being late sets up good habits.

 

In any event, I have decided to take a more proactive role in the whole thing, and ease off when he demonstrates independance in getting up on time in the morning. 


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#34 of 55 Old 10-17-2012, 10:09 AM
 
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If he doesn't get up, he should be woken up. He's old enough to learn to be responsible for getting himself up and off to school.

There is no reason, barring illness that he shouldn't be able to get up on time for school.

7:45 is not early for catching a bus to school. If he's too tired in the morning may e a parent should step in and get him to bed earlier.

Part of raising our children to be responsible adults who can function in the real world is teaching them that if they need more sleep, the solution isn't staying up late and blowing off morning responsibilities, the solution is going to bed earlier so they can get up on time in the morning.

My older kids have always caught the bus between 6:15 am and 6:30 am. Somehow they all managed to get up and go on time. My littles catch the bus at 7:34 am. I get up before them and then wake them up at 7:00 to get ready.

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#35 of 55 Old 10-17-2012, 10:38 AM
 
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Is this your son who was unschooled until recently, has written output issues and may have ADHD?

 

The vast majority of strategies recommended for kids with processing and executive functioning issues is to scaffold them - give them the support they need to get to their zone of proximal development.  So, get him to his "just right" level of challenge, where he can be successful consistently, then withdraw the scaffolding incrementally.  

 

So I think you do need to get up and get him going. He needs help to figure out a rhythm that works for him - getting to bed reasonably (I get it, he's a teenager), and getting up around the same time.  I have a teen with major sleep issues and we get her up within an hour of school day wake-up time to try to keep her rhythm consistent.  If she sleeps in Saturday, she stays up late, etc etc.

 

This is the term I was thinking of -- executive function. Impulse control and personal discipline are executive functions.    Getting up for school is a lot more than just "Oh, that's the alarm, I should get up."   There has to be level on top that says "I *need* to get up, because I have the following steps to accomplish before I leave the house."

 

Executive function skills come with both age and practice.  You can't expect a kid who is too young to exhibit adult levels of executive function -- but you also can't necessarily expect a kid who hasn't been doing a certain thing to immediately pick it up just because others his age *can* do it.   Research evidence shows that other executive functions need to be practiced to improve performance-- I don't think that getting yourself up is any different than those.


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#36 of 55 Old 10-18-2012, 01:01 AM
 
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I'd look at this another way:

 

Not "should I have to wake him up" but "he's lacking some skills that help him get out the door and to school on time". He's also lacking self regulation skills. What can you do to help him learn the skills? 

1) Make him turn off the screen earlier. It's not micromanaging if he doesn't yet have the skills. If he has the skills and  you're still managing it for him, that's micromanaging. For him, I'd say if he has to get up at 7, screens are off at 10. He can then get himself ready for bed. Phones should be stored in the main area of the house, computers off. (I'd be so mean as to unplug it and take the power cord if it's in his room and he's not turning it off.)

2) Help him walk backward through his morning routine -- you need to leave the house at 7:40. How much time do you need for your shower? breakfast? packing up? whatever else?

3) Help him get into the habit of getting up in time. While he's 16, because he's been homeschooled, he hasn't needed to learn this skill. Now he does, and it's clear he's not picking it up naturally. Some people just aren't morning people, but that doesn't mean they can't learn to get up in the morning.

4) Enforce meaningful consequences when he misses the bus. Is there any other route he can take? A back route that's safer? At 16, he should be able to walk along a country highway safely. Really. He needs to walk facing the traffic and keep his wits about him. But if my 11 year old can walk to school along a road that has no sidewalks (admittedly a relatively quiet road), your 16 year old should be up to the task.


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#37 of 55 Old 10-18-2012, 08:47 AM
 
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Great thread!  Kathy, over and over I read that kids with adhd tendencies consistently need a year or two more to grow up than is typical.  When they're 18 years old, developmentally they demonstrate milestones of slightly younger kids.  Were you OK with helping him get up when he was 14 or 15 y.o.?

 

 

Quote:
She'd sleep through her alarms or turn them off without being truly conscience. She'd be so angry at herself and no consequences natural or otherwise could change the issue. We took her laptop and phone away at night for most of a school year thinking this would help her sleep... no, she just tossed and turned. She really couldn't settle in before 10:30 or 11 (and that only gave her 7 hours at most.)

 

This is my dd's experience, and mine.  Age 44 and I still have a dreadful time waking up. The thing that helped was (besides medication) having obligations to other people: having school-aged kids.  Feeling horrible because I made my kid late to school is a great motivator. 

 

Do kids who have to get up before dawn and feed animals and shovel out stalls have these same problems? Not only do you have an obligation to someone else (the animals) but feeding them is more concrete than following a lesson at the white board. 


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#38 of 55 Old 10-18-2012, 08:51 AM
 
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I imagine kids on farms have developed the habit of getting up on time to do their chores. And this is an issue of habit too. He can get into a habit of setting an alarm clock, and getting himself up and together and out the door, but he isn't in it yet. While they're in school, it's our responsibility to make sure they get to school so we have to either get them into the habit, or get them up and deal with it.
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#39 of 55 Old 10-18-2012, 07:22 PM
 
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I'd get him off to school in the morning. My mother slept in every day and never got us off to school, and in my freshman year of college I flunked my two morning classes. Not because I didnt want to go, but because I simply could.not.get.up.and.get.out.the.door in enough time to get to class. No matter what time I went to bed- I just couldnt do it. Ill bet I missed about half of every class, appointment, or meeting I had before 9:30 am until I was 25 years old.

 

There's a lot to be said for fostering someone's ability to be a "morning person". IMO, you arent born with the attitude that the early bird catches the worm, but it can either be taught to you or you have to learn it yourself- perhaps the hard way. 


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#40 of 55 Old 10-19-2012, 04:05 AM
 
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I think its a bit unkind to wake him up in the mornings but not put him to bed at a good time at night. I know he may not like it but skipping school, being late and not sleeping enough are not good habits for him to be developing and if you are waking him up or driving him to school you are already micromanaging. Waking him up is a band-aid solution anyway. Not much point in waking him up if he's tired so he can go to school and not function/learn

 

The way I see it its a bit of a catch 22.

He either goes to bed at an appropriate time so he is able to wake up and catch the bus on time

or

He consistently shows up late/misses the bus and is tired throughout the day.

 

I guess if showing up late isn't an issue then its not a big deal.

 

If you do plan on restricting his bedtime. I would give him time to prove he can wake himself up and go to school. i.e If you can prove you can get up everyday for school then I wont restrict your night time activities but if are late to school from now on we are going to take away you phone, laptop at night etc.

It still doesn't solve the problem of him being tired in the morning if he does get up of his own accord but I think it will push him into regulating himself. If he can't then you need to start doing it for him and slowly let him take responsibility for it himself.

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#41 of 55 Old 10-19-2012, 11:47 AM
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Hey Kathymuggle!

 

I would wake him up every day!   I woke my kids up all through high school and still do for my two still at home.  

 

My oldest NEEDED! me to get him up.  He was awful.  I made his breakfast, lunch and dinner every day.   I was glad to do it and so was he.   The good news is that the last 2 months of high school he started telling me that 'I'm 18, I can wake myself up' and started setting an alarm.    


He is in college now and getting up on his own without mommy.   It all worked out.  So far, he hasn't missed a morning class or a morning workout (he's a Division I athlete). 

 

I wish I could still wake him up in the morning!  Sigh.......


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#42 of 55 Old 10-19-2012, 09:02 PM
 
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I wake my teens up.

 

For a while I was working a job where I had to leave wicked early and they CAN get themselves up, but they like me being here and poking them in the mornings.

 

I don't see what the big deal is.
 


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#43 of 55 Old 10-20-2012, 05:48 AM
 
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Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post

 

2) Help him walk backward through his morning routine -- you need to leave the house at 7:40. How much time do you need for your shower? breakfast? packing up? whatever else?

 

 

I'd wake him up. I'm pretty sure my mom woke me up at that age and probably my brother, too (older than me). 

 

I think Lynn is spot on with the above. I would sit with him in the evening and ask him to walk backward through how much time he needs to walk to the bus stop, eat breakfast, get dressed, time in the bathroom. Have him really think about that and come up with some numbers and time on the clock—"I should be out the door by 7:35 to get to the bus"—and then once you've gone through this when you wake him remind him to keep an eye on the clock. I think this helps with that scaffolding. Rather than micro-managing and telling him to eat now, and get dressed next, you're telling him to be aware of how much time he has and act accordingly. 

 

I do think, though, that if you made a family decision for him to go to school then as a family you need to support him in that. If he was an emancipated teen and living on his own then he would be responsible for himself, but if he's still at home he's not quite independent yet and needs your support. I'd get up with him.


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#44 of 55 Old 10-20-2012, 06:04 AM
 
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He is in college now and getting up on his own without mommy.   It all worked out.  So far, he hasn't missed a morning class or a morning workout (he's a Division I athlete). 

 

I wish I could still wake him up in the morning!  Sigh.......

 

LOL I so understand. My daughter is an (DIII) athlete. She has "early" classes every day, and hasn't missed one (AFAIK).

 

And I also wish I could still wake her up...

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#45 of 55 Old 10-20-2012, 06:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I do think, though, that if you made a family decision for him to go to school then as a family you need to support him in that. If he was an emancipated teen and living on his own then he would be responsible for himself, but if he's still at home he's not quite independent yet and needs your support. I'd get up with him.

I would not say we made a family decision. He made the decision - which is, I think, fairly typical when teens decide to go to school.  None-the-less, I can and will choose to support him in something he wants to do.

 

______________________________________________

 

As said earlier (people can keep responding if they want to, but I have what I need from the thread and it will be my last post)  I will get up in the morning and teach him/support him (through scaffolding) into being independent in this area.   I have gotten up early these last two morning - not with ease.  Suffice to say the apple does not fall far from the parental tree in this area!  Thanks to everyone for responding.

 

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#46 of 55 Old 10-20-2012, 12:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

 

   I have gotten up early these last two morning - not with ease.  Suffice to say the apple does not fall far from the parental tree in this area! 

 

 

Is there a reason that it is difficult for you to get up in the morning?

 

I think that when we get up and get our day started at the same time as our teens, we are teaching by example. We also have to shut things down and get to bed/get to sleep at a more reasonable time.

 

I think the converse is true. If we sleep in, we are teaching them that getting up and getting going is difficult, unpleasant, and not worth doing.  It can also be linked to modeling other unhealthy behaviors, such as being on the internet late at night (which I really struggle with).

 

I know this is a different deal for different families -- some parents work evening or night hours, or are providing night-time parenting to younger siblings while also raising teens.

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#47 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 06:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Is there a reason that it is difficult for you to get up in the morning?

 

I am not a morning person.  It seems simplistic, but I have been this way as long as I can remember.  I did set the alarm this morning for eight, as I know if I sleep in til 9:30 (which I sometimes do on weekends) I will have more trouble waking up tomorrow morning.  Ds is also going to be woken up - I do not have the heart till do it until 10:00 or so - but he usually sleeps til about noon on weekends.  I think he is catching up on sleep he missed during the week, and he stays up late on Friday and Saturday (he likes getting the house to himself.)    

 

I think that when we get up and get our day started at the same time as our teens, we are teaching by example. We also have to shut things down and get to bed/get to sleep at a more reasonable time.

 

I think the converse is true. If we sleep in, we are teaching them that getting up and getting going is difficult, unpleasant, and not worth doing.

Getting up can be difficult and unpleasant, lol, particularly if it is not your natural waking time.  I can roll out of bed easily after 8:00, but before that?  Not so easily.  I do think getting up earlier than your natural inclination is sometimes worth doing (and Ds has decided school is worth getting up early for, and I have decided that helping him get up is a good idea, so we will both do it)- but I also think it is worth setting up your life, if you can, so you do not have to wake up early if you are not a morning person.  I have always worked later shifts, taken later classes etc, to avoid early wake up times.  It comes down to knowing yourself.

 

I don't know if morning people are born or made.  If people come into this world "night owls" they can probably learn to get up in the morning, but it won't be their default and it won't be easy for them. 

 

 

 


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#48 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 08:20 AM
 
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In our family, the morning people are "made." DS and myself, total morning people. We need less sleep than typical. We wake naturally around 6:30 or 7 whether we go to bed at 9pm or at 1am. If we have to wake earlier, it's not a problem. DH and DD, need more sleep than normal, have difficultly settling in earlier in the evening and have trouble waking up in the morning. Yes, they WILL wake up but two years they woke at 5:30 for DD's school (and DH took her because it was on the way to work.) It NEVER got easier or comfortable or routine. I tell you, it was an unnatural order where they were up and DS and myself were still in bed. We're all happier now that we're all on a later morning schedule. DS and myself still rise early but it gives us some play time in the morning. DD and DH have an easier time waking at 7 than 5:30.

 

Personally, I wouldn't worry so much about setting the sleep/wake example. You may have to get up earlier to help him at the moment but in general, having your own routine that you stick to and that works for your individual situation is a plenty good example. They don't necessarily need to see you follow all THEIR commitments and schedules... especially at that age. My kids seem to understand that eating breakfast in the morning is important and put it together for themselves from K/1st grade even though DH eats his yogurt during his morning meeting at work and I eat mine after I drop them off for school.


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#49 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 11:37 AM
 
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Getting up can be difficult and unpleasant, lol, particularly if it is not your natural waking time.  I can roll out of bed easily after 8:00, but before that?  Not so easily.  I do think getting up earlier than your natural inclination is sometimes worth doing (and Ds has decided school is worth getting up early for, and I have decided that helping him get up is a good idea, so we will both do it)- but I also think it is worth setting up your life, if you can, so you do not have to wake up early if you are not a morning person.  I have always worked later shifts, taken later classes etc, to avoid early wake up times.  It comes down to knowing yourself.

 

I don't know if morning people are born or made.  If people come into this world "night owls" they can probably learn to get up in the morning, but it won't be their default and it won't be easy for them.

 

I do think some people are born late risers/night owls and some are not. I think you can make yourself get up and really work to alter your schedule if you need to.

I agree that it makes good sense to know yourself and go ahead and arrange your life to suit your natural sleep schedule if you can.

 

I can get up early pretty easily even if I am tired. I never use a snooze alarm. I'm energetic in the morning and night. I have always had a lethargic period in the afternoon though.

 

Dh always seems to have trouble getting up in the morning no matter what time he went to bed. He does it but definitely hits the snooze alarm multiple times. He is just not a jump out of bed and get going person in the morning.

 

My dd is more like dh and a night owl by nature. She doesn't wake up easily in the morning. She doesn't sleep all day but getting up early and going to bed early would be a real fight against nature for her. We homeschool. In future I think she could definitely look to jobs with flexible hours or work at night to make life easier on her.


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#50 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 12:25 PM
 
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I think it's definitely true that some people find it easier to get up in the morning. It's great for them because society seems to see them as productive members of society while we night owls are viewed as lazy slackers. Too bad no one gives props for staying up late.

 

I'm a night owl and my DH is even moreso. Both kids are and have never gotten up early even as babies/toddlers and have always been able to stay up late. Even as young as 6 or 7 they could easily stay up until midnight w/o complaining of being tired and have stayed up much later (2am, 4am) for special occasions like New Years Eve or sleepovers (not that I encouraged this behavior, but just in contrast to other kids who crashed at 10 or whatever). They have never had an early bedtime because when we would try that when they were younger I would end up getting super frustrated trying to get them to go to sleep when they obviously weren't tired and couldn't do it. When dd1 is tired she will fall asleep quickly w/in 5 minutes of her head hitting the pillow, but if she's not tired no amount of coaxing would get her to sleep. Dd2 is even harder to get to sleep. She's more like me. She needs about 15 or 20 minutes to get to sleep.

 


I have always had to get them up for school and have always had to get myself up, too. I would love a school that started around 9 or 9:30, but dd2 needs to be to school by 7:45. I just suck it up and get up, too.

 

I do think if you get up early long enough it can start to become a habit. My dad was in the military briefly and picked up the habit of getting up about 6am there. It stuck with him. Before I had kids I would easily sleep til 11 on weekends and since having kids and having to get them up for school for the past 8 yrs I don't think I could do that any more unless I was sick. I could definitely sleep later than 6:30 or 7 which is when I get up on the weekdays now, but I can't go much beyond 8:30 or so now. DH can, though, and can also stay up until 3 am or so. I usually flake out about 11 or 12 during the week, but occasionally stay up until 2. The kids would normally sleep until 8:30 or 9 or so on the weekends or summer vacation.

 

Interestingly enough, I can't nap, but DH can.


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#51 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 01:34 PM
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I wake my 15 yo. up to go to school when she forgets to set her alarm or sleeps through it.  I can't imagine just letting her sleep through the start of school if she weren't sick. 


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#52 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 01:38 PM
 
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I haven't read all the replies, but I'd wake him up. I'd also make him walk if he missed the bus. At 16, he can handle 2.5 miles, and it might make him work a little harder to get out the door on time.


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#53 of 55 Old 10-21-2012, 10:09 PM
 
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I think that there is a lot we can do to adjust ourselves to BECOME "morning" or "night" people.

 

Obviously, a lot depends on what time we go to sleep, but that is in turn dependent on what time we've eaten (and what), whether we've exercised (and how strenuously, and at what time), whether we've been exposed to sun/fresh air, and how much caffeine we've consumed (and when).

 

I know a few parents who insist that they can't possibly ever be morning people, because they will go to bed early ONCE, not be able to fall asleep quickly (because they are used to a later bed time), and then, naturally, have difficulty getting up early the next day.

 

it takes TIME to adjust one's inner clock.

 

All those factors I listed in the second paragraph?  Those are all factors in getting over jet lag, and commonly known by those who have to travel often to other time zones.

 

Basically, changing your bedtime/awakening schedule is like changing time zones.

 

Everything I've read says that sleep before midnight is more restful than sleep after midnight.  I can't find any studies saying this, so I don't know where that info comes from (please post if you find any!), but it fits with my own experience.

 

So we're back to, "if you want to get up earlier, you must go to sleep earlier."

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#54 of 55 Old 10-22-2012, 01:26 PM
 
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I think you're doing the right thing, Kathy. I agree with what's been said about it being possible to alter one's waking time, but I particularly agree with the poster above me who pointed out that it takes time to make a change. For a while I was getting up at 5:30 to exercise, and it truly felt easy, but then I didn't do it for a couple weeks in a row, and now it seems completely impossible to get up at that time. Of course, it isn't impossible, if I would make the incremental changes over time to get there again, but so far I haven't been willing to do that. 

 

Anyway, interesting thread. It's made me think about when I was a kid. My mom left for work at 6:45 when I was a kid (from about 3rd grade on), and my brother and I woke up to our alarm clock, fixed ourselves breakfast, put our lunches (that our mom had packed) into our backpacks, and walked a little over a mile to school, and were never late. That completely astounds me now -- my DS is in 3rd grade and I can't imagine having him do that! But my mom was a single mom who had to be at work, and she had high expectations of us, and we rose to them. Which is really cool, but scares the hell out of me when I think about doing the same with my own kids. I remember the sense of satisfaction that came from that self sufficiency though, so I do try to let my kids do certain things on their own so they can experience that feeling and know that I have confidence in them. But ... yeah, I'm not quite ready for them to be totally on their own on school mornings. redface.gif


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#55 of 55 Old 10-22-2012, 07:42 PM
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Oh yeah, I wanted to say that an alarm clock that is really helpful for both me and my dd is one that has a "sunrise" lamp with it.  There are different ones.  The one I have is the Soleil Sun Alarm.  The light starts coming on gradually about a half hour before the alarm is set.  It really helps me wake up gradually (and on time!)

 

Go to Amazon and search for "sun alarm."  There are a lot of different choices.  

 

And make him go to bed a half hour or hour earlier.  He really needs more sleep than 7.5 hours.  That's barely enough for an adult.  

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