Monday, 16 July 2007

Battle at bedtime

This is a typical transcript of an evening with The Boy. It spans a time frame of about three hours from 6.30 pm until 9.30 at night.
Me: Goodnight Darling! Sleep tight…
Him: I need a cuddle and a kiss
This is duly done…
Him: Mummy!
As I reach the door…and pause.
Him: Do you know what?
Me: No I don’t
Him: Knock knock
Me: Who’s there
Him: Me!!!!
Me: Goodnight Darling. Sleep tight now
Against pleas for a further cuddle and extra kisses and more jokes I close the door repeating the Night Night mantra.
I collapse after a hard day of virtually doing nothing or at least what seems like it as I am no further forward I the great ORGANISATION than before – in fact no further than I have ever been…I grab a glass of wine then hear thump thump thump from upstairs.
Me- shouting through the ceiling: Go to Bed!
Him: I need a wee!
Me: OK! Go now for a wee now Poppet.
This is duly done or at least I think so as I do not investigate this claim – not yet anyway. Perhaps he will go to bed shortly and I can get on with – whatever…I hear the door closing to his room and breathe a sigh of relief.
Five minutes later…and I feel a presence behind me, he has tripped down the stairs and is now watching TV over my shoulder – I hurriedly turn the TV off as I feel that the machinations of the Kings, Dingles and Sugdens are hardly ripe viewing for a four year old.
Him: I need some water!
Me: What now?
Him: Yes, I’m thirsty…
I get the water and hand it to him at the top of the stairs.
Me: OK - here you are. Go to bed now Darling.
All seems quiet for twenty minutes. Then…
Him – from the top of the stairs: I think I need to go for a poo now
Me: OK Darling just go and call when you need me
Him: Mummy! I need you.
Sometime later…
Him: My teddies are pushing me out of bed….
Later still…
Him: I need you!
Even later…
Him: I think I’ve found something…
Even later still…
Him: Mummy!!!!!
By this time I am in the office writing – he hunts me down…
Him: What are you doing?
Me: Go to Bed
Him: Can I do that?
Me: No Darling – it’s bedtime!
Him: You’re mean
Me getting exasperated: Bed, NOW!
Him: You are fat and ugly! You are fat and ugly when you are mean!
Me: GO TO BED NOW!!!!!!!!!
I thunder out of the office and he scampers to bed and dives in.
I close the door.
Me- seething but trying not to explode: Goodnight Darling.
There is silence. I wait at the door. He seems to be staying put. I retreat back to the office and carry on.
Five minutes later.
Him: I need a wee
And so on…


Anonymous said...

If it's any consolation I have a very similar problem. Amy is autistic, granted, but it's still frustrating all the same! She usually starts going to bed around 9pm and gets to sleep at 11ish. I often hear her mooching about, playing with toys on the floor and occasionally she comes to me with a lame excuse for getting out of bed. The excuse I have yet to resist, however, is "I need a snuggle".

Crystal xx

Suffolkmum said...

Aaarghhh this is too familiar for comfort! It does get better - that's what I keep telling myself when my daughter plays up, anyway .... what is it with that 'knock knock' joke? Mine do it all the time!

Preseli Mags said...

So familiar, I just had to laugh! Mine always do this sort of thing when their Dad is working a late shift. One evening I put music on to see if that would calm them down, but I put on the Lazytown soundtrack and they were dancing on their beds! I sorted them eventually with some whale and dolphin music. Instant sleep (although they were tired from all the dancing...!) Other successes have included Beethoven's fifth, Peter and the Wolf and tonight, the Carnival of the Animals! I have a whole stack of Mozart and a bit of Chopin lined up for future nights. PMxx

Cait O'Connor said...

You have brought back memories.
Patience (which you have) is a virtue, those days won't last forever though it seems as if they will at the time.

bodran... said...

Mine's 19 and still a right pain in the Butt at bedtime!!! If it's not his humungus exhaust roaring which he does to wind me up, as he goes! and is going to get stuffed with clay one day soon!! or it's havent you washed them yet!!!!!!AAARRRGGGHHH


We do a story ,read in bed, after teeth and washing that is it, any movement after that is received very cooly and without much response,if they say they can't sleep its fine but stay in your room and looka t books and you do not come down..Goodness I sound a mean hard Mother but it does work.. most of the time!!

countrymousie said...

Oh dear. You sound in need of that super nanny woman off the TV to break that difficult habit.
I was the same when I was little - I used to worry I would die if I went to sleep! Perhaps he is worrying about something odd.
Keep going - once you cave in to the "why dont you pop in with us" lark you will be lost forever!

Have you tried keeping him up an hour longer and see if he is then so tired he does fall asleep. Worth a try if you havent.Its worked for a couple of friends of ours with the same trouble.

Heartened to hear you watch Emmerdale!! love mousie

Milla said...

this is my life! or was, actually, oh decisions decisions, is / was / is. And my wee/poo/teddy boy is 9 in November. So don't bank on any let up just yet...

Go on you know you want to...


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