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Problems with age gap 16yr old and 11 yr old

(25 Posts)
FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 10:21:10

I've been very lucky until now, my 2 DS have always got on well despite the 5 years between them. However now the 16 yr old is growing up and attending college I do have a problem which I don't know how to resolve! He wants to spend time gaming during/after the 11 year old's bedtime, I don't have a problem with this except that the noise is preventing the 11 yr old from getting to sleep. He is trying to be quiet but if course that's almost impossible when they get into the game. Their rooms are opposite each other so any sound carries through.
I will give the 16 yr old credit, he has been coming off without too much complaint, but I feel bad for him as its normal for him to want to socialise online with his mates, I also of course feel bad for my other DS who has just started Senior school and needs his sleep!
What do others do in this situation? Is it just tough luck for the older one? I know its 1st world problems really...

OP’s posts: |
lughnasadh Tue 29-Sep-20 10:22:47

I'd say tough luck and ear plugs for the younger one.

Seeline Tue 29-Sep-20 10:26:13

What time is bedtime for the younger one and what time is the older one playing?

I assume he has headphones and both doors are shut?

FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 10:30:10

lughnasadh

I'd say tough luck and ear plugs for the younger one.


Tough luck for younger or older DS?

OP’s posts: |
FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 10:31:59

Seeline

What time is bedtime for the younger one and what time is the older one playing?

I assume he has headphones and both doors are shut?


Younger bedtime 9.30, he reads in bed from 9ish.
Older one wants to game until 10.30ish.
Older DS has gaming headphones but even when he's trying to be quiet he has a naturally deep voice which carries.
Yes both doors shut but its an old bungalow and doors not great at sound proofing.

OP’s posts: |
lughnasadh Tue 29-Sep-20 10:34:37

Tough luck for the younger.

I'm certain when they are 16 they'll not expect the whole house to pander to a 9.30 bedtime.

Noise is inevitable when living with others. The older one isn't being unreasonable.

AriettyHomily Tue 29-Sep-20 10:35:04

Tough, he needs to be quieter would be my stance. Or move the console somewhere else.

Seeline Tue 29-Sep-20 10:36:11

It's difficult - neither sounds unreasonable.

Could your older DS move into another room further away from the younger one?
COuld the younger one have some music playing quietly in the background to help block out the noise?
Or maybe if your younger DS is really suffering - restrict it to Thursday/Friday/Saturday nights?

MyEnormousTurnip Tue 29-Sep-20 10:38:44

Well I’d say tough luck to the older one. Come off at 930.

August20 Tue 29-Sep-20 10:42:51

I think it's tough luck for the older one unless he can sit in a different room in the evenings.

Sleep is so important and disrupted sleep will make your younger son miserable.

corythatwas Tue 29-Sep-20 10:43:12

I would treat this as any other house-sharing situation/consideration of neighbours situation. Establish a reasonable time when your youngest has to accept that ordinary household noises go on. n this case, I'd say about 11. Up to that time, your youngest just has to suck it up.

After that, treat it as any other noise that carries enough to keep other people awake: must only happen rarely and by prior arrangement.

Think about it as if you were the ones sleeping next to him. How late at night would you find it reasonable to have him shouting at the screen?

If your eldest thinks he could be in a house share or a relationship without considering whether his housemates'/girlfriend's sleep is disturbed, he'll have a rude awakening one day.

WitchesNStuff Tue 29-Sep-20 10:47:50

I don't think its unreasonable to expect the 16 yo to be quieter. My DC sometimes game when we are in bed as DH works a very early shift. If they are too noisy they are warned they will have to come off. They generally then keep quiet.

FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 10:48:19

Mixed responses then!
I'm glad its not just me that is conflicted!
I have thought about an area of the lounge for eldest to play, its tricky because his PC is obviously based in his room but I'm wondering if he could use the laptop sometimes (I am clueless about technology)
I hasn't thought about ear plugs for youngest, that could also work.
Thanks for the replies and opinions.

OP’s posts: |
Comefromaway Tue 29-Sep-20 10:49:46

we have always had a headphones and no noise after 10pm rule (extended to 10.30pm is all household members agree). He needs to be quieter/not speak.

Even dd who is now in halls of residence has to agree to quiet times after 11pm whilst in halls.

FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 10:50:20

Any suggestions for comfortable earplugs??

OP’s posts: |
PhantomErik Tue 29-Sep-20 10:56:15

I'd say the sleep needs for the younger child trump the wants of the older one to play games!

I'm honestly pretty shocked anyone would think differently.

Can you imagine an 11 year old being tired at school & mentioning to a teacher that he can't sleep because his 16 year old brother is allowed to play computer games until 10.30-11pm! I think there would be calls home etc as surely that's unacceptable.

Whatsnewpussyhat Tue 29-Sep-20 10:56:31

I'm on the side of the sleeper. I bloody hate noise when trying to sleep and the sound of someone talking is grating.

Do you have downstairs room the 16yo could set his game up in instead?

FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 11:03:02

PhantomErik

I'd say the sleep needs for the younger child trump the wants of the older one to play games!

I'm honestly pretty shocked anyone would think differently.

Can you imagine an 11 year old being tired at school & mentioning to a teacher that he can't sleep because his 16 year old brother is allowed to play computer games until 10.30-11pm! I think there would be calls home etc as surely that's unacceptable.


I know what you're saying, and I do agree. But I'm trying to meet the needs of them both and the 16 yr old also has a right to socialise with his friends. I would be happy for him to play until 11pm if it weren't for his brother's need to sleep. After all when the 11 yr old is 16 he will be able to do this!
I absolutely recognise the need for a good night's sleep for the youngest though, of course this is important.

OP’s posts: |
EnglishRose1320 Tue 29-Sep-20 11:05:52

I have a similar age gap between dcs, little younger though 10 and 15, 10 year old goes to bed at 8:30, reads until 9. 15 year old is allowed to game with chatting until 10, then allowed to game quietly until 10:30 and has to be off all screens by 11. Seems to work well, he still gets to game and gradually winds down whilst he is doing it and his brother gets some sleep.

If older dc wants a longer gaming night, has a set time he wants to chat with friends online etc, particularly if it's a weekend he will sometimes come off chat from 8:45-9:15 ish to give his brother a chance to fall asleep and then be allowed to chat a bit longer afterwards.

Changedmynameagain1 Tue 29-Sep-20 11:10:16

Could he be quiet for the half an hour that your youngest goes to sleep for... as realistically once the youngest is asleep he would stay asleep?

Changedmynameagain1 Tue 29-Sep-20 11:10:39

Then once he’s asleep keep gaming until a reasonable cut off time?

FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 11:14:08

Changedmynameagain1

Could he be quiet for the half an hour that your youngest goes to sleep for... as realistically once the youngest is asleep he would stay asleep?


That's a good idea! Why didn't I think of that. Thank you. Going to suggest it, he can go on at 10 when youngest is asleep.

OP’s posts: |
FannyIsNotMyAunt Tue 29-Sep-20 11:14:45

EnglishRose1320

I have a similar age gap between dcs, little younger though 10 and 15, 10 year old goes to bed at 8:30, reads until 9. 15 year old is allowed to game with chatting until 10, then allowed to game quietly until 10:30 and has to be off all screens by 11. Seems to work well, he still gets to game and gradually winds down whilst he is doing it and his brother gets some sleep.

If older dc wants a longer gaming night, has a set time he wants to chat with friends online etc, particularly if it's a weekend he will sometimes come off chat from 8:45-9:15 ish to give his brother a chance to fall asleep and then be allowed to chat a bit longer afterwards.


Thanks that's also helpfulsmile

OP’s posts: |
sickofyou22 Tue 29-Sep-20 11:55:47

If his voice carries would he keep the younger one awake if say he had a friend over and they we're just talking? Or he was talking to you? Because it sounds pretty awful to say 'no talking after 930' for example and I'd be looking how to deaden sound if it's that bad, it's going to get worse.

oomymoomy Tue 29-Sep-20 12:54:27

Does the noise wake up the younger one if he's already asleep? Or is it just the 'getting to sleep' period that's the issue? I know I’m like that - unless I'm utterly exhausted I need almost total silence to nod off, but once I’m out I can sleep through almost anything! smile

If this is the case with your younger DS, would the older one agree to a silent break from gaming for twenty minutes or so, just while the younger one is dropping off? Would it be disastrous if the older one went to bed slightly later to accommodate this? Could he get ready for bed while he's waiting (supper, brush teeth, get stuff ready for the morning, or whatever) and then go back to gaming for a short while after?

Otherwise I think it has to be different rules for school nights and weekends/holidays.

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