Seriously, bedtime is becoming the biggest challenge of the summer. My children have always gone to be early. we have tried a few times to move the bedtime to later and both have requested that we move it back. Part of the reason is that Mickey can’t/won’t sleep in. If he goes to bed at 7:30 pm or 12:00 am, he still is up at 6:00 am and extremely cranky. Because of Autism, we find it easier across the board to maintain the schedules whenever possible through the summer. So, we normally keep bedtime even in the summer (while being somewhat lax for special events – lots of drive in movies, movies under the stars and later than normal events). Both kids asked for bedtime to be moved from 7:30 to 8:00. That is fine, and truthfully should probably be 8:30 to be more age appropriate, but we will start with 8:00 and see. We have NEVER had an issue getting the kids to bed. They were both very well sleep trained when I got them and both are usually ready for bed and in bed within minutes of on time with almost no avoidance techniques.
So, why are we suddenly struggling with bedtimes? Why have neither kids been asleep before 9:30 a single night this summer. Blissfully, Mickey has slept in some, so I suspect we are in the midst of a hormonal shift, but still. Back to school is going to be a nightmare if he is used to sleeping until 8:00 and not go to bed until 9:30 or 10:00. His bus comes at 6:30. Changes in routine can take him a while to adjust and we have vacation right before school starts back. So, I am concerned that we are digging ourselves into a pattern that will be nightmarish to get out of.
They are fighting me on bed time. Minnie is falling asleep post dance camp because she is exhausted. She is crying for an hour before she finally passes out of exhaustion because she is so cranky, yet she refuses to go to sleep. Mickey is refusing to sleep in his room and using that as an excuse to delay bedtime. Neither have tvs or technology in their room and nothing else has changed, other than summer break. So, why will they not go to bed? My head is about to pop off – both children are cranky and ill tempered.
Any suggestions here are appreciated. Even when I force them to bed, they are sitting up and playing, talking, sneaking to each other’s rooms, etc…..