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To not get why people put their DC to bed early

(367 Posts)
RogerThatOver Mon 23-Oct-17 22:56:41

...when it's unnecessary?

I get that if you all have to be up and out for 7.30 then they'd need to be in bed early.

But my SIL has 3 DC under 5, none at school and no plans to return to work at any point. Her DC are in bed for 6pm. That means being stuck in the house from 4pm every day which I would hate. They get up at 5/5.30 which she complains about endlessly but what does she expect if they go to bed so early? They can't go on days out because the DC are tired by lunch time and have to be home to nap, they don't do family parties or weddings because the DC cannot travel after 3pm and need to be home to wind down for bed by 4pm.

I also have 3 DC under 5. Mine go to bed at 9 and get up at around 8, sometimes later at the weekend. We can have full days out, if there's a party or wedding they can happily stay up until midnight. We can go to the park til bedtime in the summer and never need to rush home. They have an older sibling at school and are all ready on time to take her at 8.30 so their bedtime won't need major adjustment when they start school.

SIL and MIL are both very judgey about my DC's bedtime with SIL saying at the weekend that my DC must be 'chronically overtired' because they were still dancing at a family party at midnight. The hours of sleep they get are actually no different but IMO a later bedtime means my DC can do more in life. SIL admits she spends every morning drinking coffee with the kids watching tv until 10 because she's so tired, then if they go out they need to be home for naps by 12. She doesn't seem happy with the way things are but so many people seem to think it's just the way things must be with young DC.

AIBU to not understand the obsession with early bedtimes, coupled with complaints about early rises?

AuntLydia Mon 23-Oct-17 23:00:59

You'd all probably be a lot happier if you judged each other less. Let her worry about her routines and lifestyle and maybe she'll stop sticking her beak into your business.

Blueskyrain Mon 23-Oct-17 23:01:15

Totally agree with you!!

PoppyPopcorn Mon 23-Oct-17 23:01:24

I had an early riser. It was hell. We tried everything to make him sleep later - extra naps, no naps, later bed, early bed, blackout blinds, sheets, blankets, duvets, bribes, gro-clokcs, everything.

Nothing worked. He was up at betwene 5 and 5.30pm irrespective of what time he went to bed. If I'd kept him up until 9pm, he would have been a little ratbag all day. He was an early riser right through to hitting the teenage years and now has to be chiselled out of bed to get to school in the mornings. Your sister in law's routine obviously works for them.

Also I used to LOVE that moment in the early evening when the kids are in bed and you've got a couple of hours to yourself before bedtime. Couldn't be doing with not starting that until 9pm.

Osirus Mon 23-Oct-17 23:04:14

I agree. My 15 month old goes to bed at 9.30-10pm and then wakes at 9am. Perfect, and she has been known to stay up later, which is great if we are on holiday/wedding etc. It suits us anyway, and of course we will have to adjust the times when she needs to get up for school. At the current time, this works well for us and my DH gets to spend quality time with her after work and we all eat dinner together.

Glumglowworm Mon 23-Oct-17 23:05:05

Both of you should stop judging each other

Some kids get up that early no matter what time they go to bed. So to get the sleep they need they have to go to bed early.

You carry on doing what works for you and your dc and let her do what works for hers.

arethereanyleftatall Mon 23-Oct-17 23:05:27

It's up to any parent to choose the bedtimes that suit them best.

I would imagine the main reason for putting children to bed early is so that the couple can enjoy the evening together.

Which is fine. As is your way.

honeylulu Mon 23-Oct-17 23:06:23

Well you do what works for you, and she does what works for her. Neither is "wrong" (though our household timings are much more like yours btw.)

arethereanyleftatall Mon 23-Oct-17 23:06:50

Oh, there's also lots of dc who wake up at the crack of dawn regardless of what time they go to bed. Again, an early bedtime works in that situation.

AuntLydia Mon 23-Oct-17 23:07:00

Yep Poppy, that's what 2 of mine were like. And my (now ex) SIL loved to judge me for it. Although I can honestly say I never judged her for the fact her kids went to bed later - I couldn't really give a shiny shit, they seemed well enough rested to me. My 3rd child is very much a late to bed, late to wake up kid. I struggle to get her to sleep early enough on a school night as she is just naturally awake until 9ish.

Steeley113 Mon 23-Oct-17 23:07:26

Mind your own, seriously. I had an early riser, nothing has ever changed that and the only way to cope with it is early nights. Just stop worrying about what they are doing and concentrate on your own thing and tell her to do the same 🙄

spacefrog35 Mon 23-Oct-17 23:10:02

Same as poppy. Mine gets up at 05:30 regardless of bed time. I also love the fact that it gives me an hour or so to cook/do washing & general other household chores. I have absolutely no idea how I would cope if she didn't go down till 9pm.

AuditAngel Mon 23-Oct-17 23:10:13

Horses for courses.

We keep Kate hours in our house, never fixated on routines. I sometimes wish the kids would go to bed earlier, but late hours suit us, my DH owns a bar, my kids do professional shows so can easily cope with a 10.20 finish at the theatre, even when DD2 was 5

TheEdgeOfGlory266 Mon 23-Oct-17 23:11:46

My almost 3yr old will sleep for a solid 12 hours regardless of when he goes to bed. His bedtime is usually 7pm and my husband and I quite like getting an evening alone together but it's not a super strict bedtime. It was before my mat leave and he had to be up early for the childminders but on days when he doesn't need to be up we take our time. We're lucky he will just go to bed when we promt him, he will quite happily stay up for special occasions. A friend of mine, her son is up at half 5 regardless of when he goes down, so she puts him to bed at 6 so he gets a decent night and she can get an early night. Horses for courses i suppose. Not everyone is the same.

DramaAlpaca Mon 23-Oct-17 23:11:53

My DC are grown up now, but I was always in the put them to bed later camp, mainly so I'd get to sleep longer as I've never been a morning person.

My SIL was like yours, all hers tucked up in bed by 6.30, then she used to wonder why they were awake at the crack of dawn.

We're all different though, we all do what suits our own families & circumstances & it's not really helpful to judge.

NewDaddie Mon 23-Oct-17 23:13:16

We haven’t been able to establish a routine that sticks yet but usually dd sleeps early, which gives dw and I bit of time in the evening and dd goes jogging with me in the morning.

When she’s up late and wakes up late it’s good too though.

ZippyCameBack Mon 23-Oct-17 23:15:17

I'm too busy to waste time worrying about when other people's kids go to bed. It's none of my business. I have some children who need to be in bed early, some who need much less sleep and one who would sleep professionally if that was a possibility. Each one need something different and anyone who thinks they can judge me about their bedtimes clearly needs more work to do.

haveagobletofblood Mon 23-Oct-17 23:15:53

Whatever works for you but 6pm does seem very early for bedtime. 5mo DS goes down between 7-7.30 usually and that feels about right.

ShoesHaveSouls Mon 23-Oct-17 23:16:43

Sometimes you find that it's not the bed-time that governs the waking up time, but the other way round. I found that anyway. No matter what time I put ds to bed, he'd still wake around 6am. So bedtime was 7pm.

It means you get an evening to relax. I think you should both stop judging each other tbh - then you'd all be a lot happier.

muttmad Mon 23-Oct-17 23:16:52

I love my kids, but those couple of quiet hours before bed, winding down cuddled up watching tv with my partner are very much needed after a full on day. I’m lucky I suppose as they go to sleep about 7 but will happily sleep through till 8am.

TheDisillusionedAnarchist Mon 23-Oct-17 23:16:53

I wanted to be like you because we are night owls but my baby gradually pushed bedtime earlier and earlier by being impossible to settle. He now goes down at 1800. Can't say I love it but it works for him. I followed his lead, perhaps your SIL did the same.

LongWavyHair Mon 23-Oct-17 23:17:47

My dc get up really early in the morning no matter what time they go to bed, so they go to bed in between 6pm and 7:30pm. I don't get a lie in ever so I settle for downtime in the evenings instead.

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 23-Oct-17 23:18:31


Some people prefer to have their evenings free and kids in bed early.

Others prefer more of a lie in and to have their kids up later.

Granted her routine doesn't sound like it's working to well but that may not he down to what time they go to bed and more down to the quality of sleep they are getting or how often they wake

overduemamma Mon 23-Oct-17 23:19:27

I have a 3 year old and 8m old. Both go to bed about 8ish. 3 year old will sleep till about 8am. 3m old will start waking about 6.30 x

catrin Mon 23-Oct-17 23:19:32

I had the world's tiredest child. She would possibly make it to 8 pm but be falling apart by then, so up until age 5 or 6 had a 7 pm bedtime. She still slept until 8am or until I woke her on a school day. You do what works for your children.

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