Kids Do Everything to Delay Bedtimes

“Read one book before sleeping Mommy. I promise to read just one book. Not two. Promise. Read one book please. Just one book, promise..”

This was after we had a full day at the mall and I knew she was already too tired and sleepy. She knew I wouldn’t agree because she doesn’t want to read just one, but two, or three books! We will totally be off schedule if I give in. So NO.

“Once there was a little old woman and a little old man..”

I couldn’t refuse the begging look!huhuhu And I liked how she asked politely and how she made a promise! I just couldn’t help but give in. So we read The Gingerbread Boy and just as we were about to reach the last page, she closed the book and said,

“Read the Princess and the Pea!”

Oh, I thought you promised we’ll just read one book?

“Yes, just the Princess and the Pea book!”

But you picked the Gingerbread Boy story..

“The Princess and the Pea booooook. The Princess and the Pea………”

A promise is a promise, anak. You chose the Gingerbread Boy so when we finish the last page, we will go to bed. (kill joy mom…)

Good thing she didn’t push for it anymore. But her attempts were really good! Smarty pants.

These delaying styles actually started when she was a year and a half. We would read one book and she would quickly grab another book to delay going to bed. There were also times when she would say, “Another milk please”, and then afterwards say, “Water, please” And after a few minutes say, “Change diaper” or “Go to the potty, please”, even if we just did all that.

I never thought that toddlers could actually think this way. You know, to trick or test if it will work. They can literally make us stand and get what they need to buy more awake time. You may find it manipulative but I actually think it’s amazingly clever! This is something that we don’t teach!

Possible thought bubble: If I ask for milk again, Mommy will get one and then we can talk and not sleep yet. Let’s give it a try.

Just clever.

Next thought bubble: Oh I know! I’ll ask for water and then Mommy will say, here’s your water, and then we will talk some more and not sleep.

Talk about creativity and persistence!

And if that doesn’t work still: Maybe I can pretend I need to pee so she’ll stand and turn the lights on and not sleep yet.

They are quite determined to avoid bedtimes! And this will just go on and on until I don’t respond at all or until I have actually fallen asleep from pretending to be asleep.

“Mommy… Hug me and kiss me please… Mommy……”

Oh boy, and I thought those few minutes of silence meant that she already drifted off to dreamland..

Errrr you probably already know what happened next. I’m so screwed.

What are your kids’ delaying tactics?