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4 1/2 yr old bedtime??

(9 Posts)
globalmouse Sun 29-May-11 21:04:24

Ds has always been pretty good at going to bed - usually anytime from 7 til 7.30. He tends to wake about 6.30 in the morning.
BUT, recently (in the past month), he hasn't been going to sleep til nearly 9. I'm not sure if it's because of the light evenings (though tbh he sleeps with the light on anyway) or because 7.30 is just too early for him now???
It's driving me insane! He looks tired, we go through the whole bedtime routine we have done for years, but he just WONT go to bed. Keeps getting up and coming downstairs until 9 ish. One particular night last week, he was up til 10, which is unheard of for him, and was horrible for me as I was exhausted by 9! He goes to preschool, and is active in the daytime. I think I tire him out!
So am I being unrealistic about his bedtime, or is he trying it on??

ttalloo Sun 29-May-11 21:09:54

I don't think you're being unrealistic about his bedtime - DS1 was 4 in February, and goes to bed at 7.30 most evenings, except when he's had a nap in the afternoon, in which case it might be 8 or 8.30.

If your DS isn't having a nap in the afternoon, I'd say he's trying it on, in which case you're going to have get tough with him....

Guitargirl Sun 29-May-11 21:13:24

Both my DCs go to bed just before 9 and they are aged 4 and 2. We try to get them to go at around 7:30 but no chance, they just won't go to sleep. Both are VERY active during the day but no matter how busy they have been it doesn't seem to make a difference. The eldest (DD) stopped sleeping in the day when she had just turned 2. That didn't make a difference either.

whomovedmychocolate Sun 29-May-11 21:14:36

DD is 4.9 and goes to bed at 7. She actually goes to sleep nearer eight but she is in bed and reading then.

globalmouse Sun 29-May-11 21:38:06

My gut feeling was he was trying it on, but he is very resistant to this!! So far he has lost 2 boxes of toys and 6 days of tv! I do follow through with my threats, though from the way he behaves you would think I did't. And, I suppose the telling thing is that he goes to bed no problems for other people...

BUT he gets up early no matter what, and after a 'late night' he still doesn't go to sleep at 7.30, which I would have thought would mean he could cope with that little sleep. But he does look tired, and is that hyper-energetic I find he gets like when he is really tired.


AbbyLou Sun 29-May-11 22:30:03

My ds who is 6 goes at 7pm and dd (4) goes at 6.30-6.45. I sound like I'm expecting a lot compared to others but both are asleep within minutes of going to bed. They have to be up about 6.30 as we leave the house early in the morning. If dd who is 4 doesn't get 11-12 hours she is really bad-tempered.

Tgger Sun 29-May-11 23:08:49

6.45 or 7pm for both 4.5 and 2.5 dcs here. Ds does sometimes "read" in bed but always stays in his room after bedtime, and generally is asleep within seconds/minutes.

GreenTeapot Sun 29-May-11 23:27:06

Sounds like whatever started it, he's now overtired and will need help to get back into a routine of settling to sleep earlier. 9pm is way too late IMO, that only leaves him with 9 hours sleep.

What about some sort of tweak to the bedtime routine to make it interesting - can you alter the story book/bath/milk aspects somehow, eg story in bed instead of downstairs? My almost 4 year old has had George's Marvellous Medicine instalments read to him recently and loved is as a change from picture books. Then do gradual retreat so he doesn't need to get up to come to you. And I would personally have blackout blinds and lights out - he can still have a nightlight but I can't fathom how anyone can sleep well in a light room.

I think overall staying calm is probably key. Otherwise it will become a battleground, not what you need!

globalmouse Mon 30-May-11 10:58:36

thanks for your info everyone
greenteapot - I think you are right, he is overtired and into a new routine of staying up late. We already read (instalements of a chapter book) in my bed, then go over to his. He used to do this easily, but just seems to choose to stay up, as for other people he goes down ok.
I will try bribery - he usually responds well to a sticker chart. Just wanted to know if I was being sensible about bedtimes before I embarked on yet ANOTHER sleep training programme!!!!

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