Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Bedtime Excuses

Does anybody else feel like they are about to lose their minds because their kids refuse to go to sleep at night without a complete breakdown...every night?

Honestly I am at my wit's end with it.  It has been at least a week that he has been doing it every night.  Previously it would happen maybe one night a week, if that.  Every night at bedtime it is a consistent fight.  We do our bedtime routine the same every night, we spend mommy and Z time for about an hour after K goes to bed, and we make it all the way up to I start to leave the room.

It starts with when I put him to bed.  As soon as I start to leave the room he all of a sudden starts arguing with me to stay.  When I say no, it is bedtime, he starts crying.  It isn't a quiet cry, it is a crying yell kind of cry.  He is a very loud cryer (by the way he is 5).

I have tried to soothe him to find out what is really wrong and I get nowhere.  He tells me he is having nightmares, but then he would tell me that when he hadn't even fallen asleep.  I explained that he is just thinking about things he doesn't like and he needs to change his thoughts. The first 3 or 4 nights I would do this with him and tell him happy stories and try to change his train of thought.  And every night it took an hour after bedtime and he would have another excuse such as bathroom or hungry, or whatever he could think of.

This is when I realized that he is playing me.  Every night.  He just doesn't want to go to bed and since I stopped coddling him, he has gone into "I'm going to drive mommy crazy" mode.  He fights me about staying in his room.  I leave his door cracked at night so when he is screaming I close it so he doesn't wake his brother up, but then he just comes into the hallway scream-crying.  It has been a constant battle.

Tonight he chose to sleep in the den instead of his room because he refused to go to bed and stay in bed.  I don't even know what to do with that!

Any suggestions on how to deal with this without losing my mind or letting him stay up as long as he wants to?


  1. I had this same problem with my daughter at that age (she is now 7 and goes to bed no problem). I used to play music for her. I either set it to the lullaby music channel on her TV, or I'd play one of her CDs, very low volume, but loud enough to keep her occupied. It worked and she eventually grew out of it, and now her only need is a night light. Sorry, I know its tough. Hang in there!


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