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7 Responses to Child-Led Bedtimes

  1. Crystal - Prenatal Coach  

    Great post, thank you for your insights!

  2. Alicia C.  

    When my oldest (who will be 13 in a couple of weeks) was little, I worked second shift at a restaurant and his dad was a musician. Here’s how our average day went: Wake up a 10am, nap time at 3pm, Bed time between 12:30 and 1:30am. He was fine. He got the amount of sleep he needed. He’s smart and healthy. He’s in 8th grade now, and never has trouble getting up. In fact, he’s a *morning* person, despite his first six years’ sleeping habits.
    A ped who says she needs to go to bed earlier is the same as any nosy interloper who says the same thing. This doc should be adding up the hours of sleep and looking at the results (a healthy, happy kid) rather than making this kind of suggestion.

  3. Shannon

    Right now my almost 3 year old is happily playing by herself in her room. We have been encouraging her to wind herself down a little bit between stories and actual falling asleep time. Not only does it seem to not keep her awake longer, it helps her fall asleep faster when she finally is ready. She is also more likely to let me know when she wants an early nap.
    Unless your child is sleep deprived, I don’t think this should really be any of your doctor’s concern. There have been studies that show a correlation between early bedtimes and better health or intelligence, but I have yet to see one that actually proves that going to sleep early is a cause of any of those things.

  4. Jenny  

    thank you for this!! the insights are helpful and i love how it comes not only from 1 but several mentors

  5. Jessica Lang @ Cloth Diapering Mama  

    Great article and awesome insight from the NPN ladies 🙂 My sons both “tell” me when its time for bed and always have. It is usually around the same time every night. Read their cues and it will be obvious when they are ready to settle down. I’ve tried set bed times and like the OP said, it can take 2 hours for that routine to work. Sometimes its tough to make sure they get enough sleep, but if given a nice relaxing environment and gentle encouragement my boys lead us to the family bed when they are ready 🙂

  6. Courtney  

    thanks for this article – i needed to see this today!

    everyone kept saying we needed a “real” bedtime and routine to keep our toddler grounded…well, after a week of doing the new routine, he figured out that A leads to B and B leads to sleep and rebelled – taking our former 30 min wind down period to 2+ hours. we finally scrapped the bedtime nonsense this week and are back to following his cues for when he is ready to sleep.