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13 year old dd and bedtime - is this a battle worth fighting?

(57 Posts)
Dancergirl Mon 16-May-16 10:48:31

My middle dd is 13. Having got off very lightly with teenage stuff with my oldest dd (15), dd2 definitely pushes the boundaries far more and likes an argument.

Her bedtime has been drifting later and later. I accept that she might not need as much sleep as I thought so I've relaxed a bit and aimed for between 10 and 10.30pm. She's fine getting up in the morning btw.

However, I've said to her that by 9.30pm her phone should be off and left charging in the kitchen and she should start heading upstairs. Partly because she needs some faffing time and partly because dh and I can spend a bit of time together.

So last night, we were watching tv together, I reminded her it was 9.30, she replied 'in a minute'. After a long moan about how unfair I am, I don't nag dd1 etc etc, she stomped off to bed and didn't come and say goodnight like she usually does.

I suppose I am a bit lax with dd1, she is supposed to be in bed by 11pm but she is also a faffer. But it's late by then and I'm going to bed myself.

This morning dd2 was obviously still in a mood with me sad

So I don't know. When do you stop enforcing bedtimes? I know teens still need boundaries but on the other hand is this a battle worth fighting?

Stardust160 Mon 16-May-16 10:50:37

9.30 is far too early to be sending at 13year old to bed. My 7 year old almost 8 goes between 7.30-8

Dancergirl Mon 16-May-16 10:51:49

So what would be a sensible time then?

namechangeparents Mon 16-May-16 10:54:32

I send my 13 year old to bed at 9 on a school night. He doesn't usually go to sleep until closer to 10, but kids need wind-down time away from the electronic gadgets.
At weekends he goes up around 9.30/45 depending on whether there's anything he wants to watch on TV.

OP teachers will thank you for making sure your dd gets enough sleep.

ThornyBird Mon 16-May-16 10:55:21

My dc2, also 13 goes up at a similar time 9.30. I have the rule of no technology after 9 for him as he struggles to get to sleep so don't think iPad/iPhone is a great idea.

We will watch TV together or often he will take himself up and read or go for a shower if I'm watching something he doesn't want to watch.

Somerville Mon 16-May-16 10:56:04

I still send my 14 year old up to bed with her younger siblings at 8pm! And her lights out is 9.30 - we get up at 6.30. She's not allowed to take her phone up with her either. She has a bath, then reads.

I'm not sure how long I'll get away with sending her up so early. grin

But I definitely think 9.30 to head upstairs for a 13 year old is fine and should be enforced.

lljkk Mon 16-May-16 11:20:22

Mine must not keep me awake (I'm in bed from about 10pm) & they must get up in the morning. I will shoo them towards bedrooms if not there by 10pm, preferably 9pm.

I couldn't be asked to police the rest.

cbigs Mon 16-May-16 11:23:30

Crikey my 9 yr old goes at 9! I think it depends on the child . My five year old goes at 8 but will be awake at 10 still . She does not switch off for some reason always been like that. When I was that age I was allowed to read or whatever until I felt ready to go to sleep .

Dancergirl Mon 16-May-16 12:24:23

Some mixed responses!

So if you're in the enforcing a fixed bedtime school of thought, HOW do you enforce it? What do you do if you're met with 'no' or 'in a minute'? Imposing a consequence seems a bit OTT to me confused

MyballsareSandy2015 Mon 16-May-16 12:32:22

My 15 year olds go up at 10ish, no phones allowed but they can read as long as they want. Don't have a 'lights out' time. One goes up very easily, loves her sleep and gets tired easily. The other is more of a battle and if she got up in the mornings more easily I wouldn't mind a later bedtime. Weekends and school hols are very late

bilule Mon 16-May-16 12:36:32

my 13 year old, my 16 year old and my 10 year old all go to bed at 9 and I take the 13 year olds phone and the 10 year olds ipod.

They sleep really well and have plenty of energy, its all good.

steppemum Mon 16-May-16 12:38:15

no 9:30 isn't too early at all!

I do think it does depend a bit on what time they have to be up and out, but my 13 year old has to have phone downstairs by 9 pm and then lights out at 9:30.

It is an ongoing battle. The trouble is, if we let it slip it gets later and later and later. I can tell how bad it is getting by how tired he looks in the morning.

The only way we can enforce it is that if he doesn't do it he looses his phone for school tomorrow. About once a week we have to bring out that threat (go up NOW or your phone is gone for school, 5, 4, 3, 2,1... by which time he is in the kitchen plugging in phone and racing for stairs)

He complains that we always use his phone as the bargaining chip, but it is the only thing that works.

despite our best efforts, he is almost never upstairs at 9 with bag packed, clothes out and phone downstairs and had his shower. I consider it a good day if he has done that at lights out by 9:30.

PotteringAlong Mon 16-May-16 12:38:17

You see, I think the 15 year old should be upstairs going to bed by 9.30 too...

bilule Mon 16-May-16 12:38:19

they are not big telly watchers and they do a lot of sport so are happy to go to bed. Very occasionally the older two might stay up later.

The older two read in bed and faff about, probably don't get to sleep until nearer 10 (the little one is asleep within minutes)

MajesticSeaFlapFlap Mon 16-May-16 12:40:42

13 year old goes to bed at 9 on school days. He can read or whatever but he has to be in bed.
He usually goes to sleep so he clearly needs it

Plus I would get no quality time with his dad if he didn't

bilule Mon 16-May-16 12:43:45

I think its utterly crap that 13 year olds are allowed to take their phones to bed during school time, they should be reading and I don't care if I sound like a miserable old bag. Phones are completely addictive and do nothing for their mental wellbeing whereas pottering about and reading is good for them.


Smartiepants79 Mon 16-May-16 12:48:34

Upstairs for 9:30 seems reasonable to me. They need the sleep more at that age don't they?
I would stick to your guns and maybe be a bit more firm with the elder one as well. If the younger sees that her sister is expected to do similar she might be more amenable. So 10:30 upstairs for the eldest.

useyourimagination Mon 16-May-16 12:50:25

My 13 year old goes up at 10pm and has done for a while. Funnily enough, my 17 year old goes earlier but then she needs more sleep.

FutureGadgetsLab Mon 16-May-16 12:53:47

Not worth fighting about in my opinion. Id also let her have her phone and learn to self regulate, they eventually do. But then I'm a tech lover myself.

angus6 Mon 16-May-16 12:56:58

15 & 16 yo here. At 9.30 on a school night all phones, tabs, laptops have to be switched off and put in a basket on the stairs. Then they read or whatever in their rooms until they're tired. Weekends and school holidays they are allowed to keep their devices with them overnight and I know they will be on them half the night, but I only complain if they are being noisy and keeping me awake.

At 13 bedtime was 9, no devices overnight, but allowed to read until tired.

Any complaints or delaying tactics I used to bring bedtime forward by half hour for a week or two when they were younger. Now I just change the wifi password and don't give them the new password, that works like magic.

ThornyBird Mon 16-May-16 13:11:02

The phone/iPad thing I do enforce, consequence is to lose iPad the next day. They get left downstairs charging.

The time is a bit more lax. We all know 9.30ish is the guide but as dc2 hates most of the telly I watch, he doesn't hang around. After 9 I get to chose what is on the telly as the 4dc have control of the remote until then grin so if I want him gone, I stick Eastenders or similar on wink

Dc1 (14) is all far more relaxed as she has always been much better at going to bed/sleep when she needs to. She leaves her phone/iPad in my room after about 10, sometimes a little later now she has a BF hmm.

I do think it all depends on the child to a degree - dc2 would iPad all night if he could and us a doc to get up in the morning whereas dc1 has always self regulated and is first up at 7 every morning.

ThornyBird Mon 16-May-16 13:13:13

*Us a doc?

"Is a sod" is what I meant

ThroughThickAndThin01 Mon 16-May-16 13:17:49

I think 9.30 is perfectly reasonable for a 13 year old.

DS is just 16, and his school night bedtime is 10.15. No phone in room after that time.

Saturday nights, and school holidays he has his phone and decides his own bedtime.,

QueenJuggler Mon 16-May-16 13:42:41

My 8 year old goes to bed at 8.45, but is allowed to self-regulate reading time in bed. Most nights she's turned the lights out at 9.15, some nights she's up until 10. Putting her to bed any earlier just results in her lying in bed awake - plus teaching her to recognise her own signs of tiredness is a good life skill (somedays she wask to go up early and is asleep by 8.30, so we know it works).

She's flying at school and at sport - so no obvious negative impact of less sleep. Some people just need less sleep than others.

By 13, I'd assume self-regulation is possible. However, I don't have a teen yet - so might be talking out of my arse! But 9.30 seems bonkers early!

Dancergirl Mon 16-May-16 13:44:30

queen I also have a 9 year old who is a night owl! I try and turn her light off by 9pm but it's often a bit later and she doesn't get to sleep straight away.

I clearly have a family of night owls! grin

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