My dd is 5 and very rarely falls asleep before 10pm. I have to go through a whole routine of 3 stories and then I have to lay on her bed with her until she falls asleep. If I try to go before she is asleep she cries and says things like don't leave me, I'm scared. She has fairy lights and night lights so it's not dark in her room. We live in a flat so she's not upstairs on her own or anything. Every night she wants to sleep in my bed with me and will happily stay awake until I go to sleep. It's like she doesn't need much sleep and is never tired until later. Which means she's also finds waking up in the morning very hard. Should I start putting her to bed earlier? I start at 8 now but she takes 2 hours to go to sleep which means I have no time to myself in the evening.
Have you asked her what she's scared of? My 4.10 had a phase of being scared of ghosts we spent quite a long time talking about how ghosts aren't real etc etc. He is also allowed to play in his room after bedtime and listen to a story cd. He can choose when he is tired and wants to go to sleep. However he's not allowed downstairs because I have 'jobs' to do (like watching telly!). I would try reasoning with her why she needs you there, then explain the problem for you and come up with a compromise. 5 is quite old enough to understand. K