Teenager Bedtime Woes

Posted by Treasure Ransom @transom, Feb 14, 2018

Every night when we say it is bedtime, our 15 year old gets frustrated. We start hearing the following:

“My friends get to stay up later.”
“Why are you treating me like a baby?”
“I can’t believe you are making me go to bed. It is only 9:30.”

I know the importance of sleep for kids his age, for him in particular. Doing what I feel is right for him is causing us issues. I want what is best for him, and for our relationship. Any thoughts on how we can strike a balance?

That's tough, @transom. Do you think he'd get the point if you let him have his way a few nights in a row, staying up as late as he wants, but still having to get up at his regular time in the a.m.? As in, he'll likely feel tired, crabby, etc., during day and "get it"? Probably wishful thinking 🙂

We have a household of night owls. Our 13-year-old is often up reading past 11, but we do have set times when his phone needs to be put away, and when he needs to be off all other screens.

Good luck! I'm finding these teen years are more challenging for me than infant and toddler years.

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@sunnihemingsen

That's tough, @transom. Do you think he'd get the point if you let him have his way a few nights in a row, staying up as late as he wants, but still having to get up at his regular time in the a.m.? As in, he'll likely feel tired, crabby, etc., during day and "get it"? Probably wishful thinking 🙂

We have a household of night owls. Our 13-year-old is often up reading past 11, but we do have set times when his phone needs to be put away, and when he needs to be off all other screens.

Good luck! I'm finding these teen years are more challenging for me than infant and toddler years.

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Thanks @sunnihemingsen for the tips. Yes, these teen years are difficult. And my younger son is approaching it quickly! YIKES!

We have tried to give him more liberties lately on bedtime, but one saving grace of Daylight Savings Time (even if for the short-term) was that he recognized how tired he was and has been choosing to go to bed early this week. 🙂 I am glad to see him recognizing his needs. Usually, it is his behavior that let's us know he hasn't been getting enough sleep.

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@transom

Thanks @sunnihemingsen for the tips. Yes, these teen years are difficult. And my younger son is approaching it quickly! YIKES!

We have tried to give him more liberties lately on bedtime, but one saving grace of Daylight Savings Time (even if for the short-term) was that he recognized how tired he was and has been choosing to go to bed early this week. 🙂 I am glad to see him recognizing his needs. Usually, it is his behavior that let's us know he hasn't been getting enough sleep.

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Bedtime is a tough issue in the teen years. Our kids are all grown now but we survived these trials four times over! At around 13, we stopped enforcing a bedtime for the most part. If they were up crazy late, we'd intervene, but as long as their grades were good and they were taking care of their responsibilities, we stopped telling them what time to go to bed. We did, however, make them go upstairs to their rooms by the time we went to bed, have the lights off, and if they turned their tv's on, they had to put the sleep timer on and not turn the tv back on after (they almost always fell asleep watching it). If they were tired the next day, that was on them but expectations didn't change because they were tired – so they learned to self regulate and we didn't end the day arguing with them 🙂

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