Awake at 1 a.m.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TerryJ2, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I woke up a few min ago, unable to sleep.
    I checked in difficult child's room. No difficult child.
    I crept downstairs and there he was, at the computer, playing Sims.
    How long would you ground your difficult child off of all electronic equip?
    We have talked about this in therapy ... how difficult child is supposed to lie in bed and be bored, or read, but never, never to play any computer games or video games at night.
    He has missed a lot of school this yr. I am very angry.
    In a calm tone of voice, I said, "Do you understand now, why we lock up your controllers and mouse at night?"
    He said yes and went straight to bed. (He took his Vistaril tonight around 6:30. He's going to be one, tired puppy in the a.m.)

    by the way, I put the mouse in my bathroom, behind the maroon makeup pouch in the cabinet.
    Because my chances of remembering that are pretty slim. :laugh: You all have to help me out here!:angel3:

  2. Pookybear66

    Pookybear66 New Member

    Hi Terry, I too am up at 1am because I am not exhausted enough to go to bed. I am tired, I have a cold and I SHOULD be in bed so I can get up at 7 with difficult child to do writing assignment it got too late to do tonight. So I can sympathize/empathize with you. That's something I can never remember-which one is grammatically correct. Oh well, I will remember the controller is behind the maroon makeup case for you. LOL! I am gonna post separately about my difficult child so be sure to check it out.
  3. Pookybear66

    Pookybear66 New Member

    DUH-I guess I AM tired after all, I forgot to help you out with your question. Is it possible to just let him go to school tired? I might still take away the comp for a day or week, but mostly I would just let him face the consequences. Because as an adult we have to learn to do that (He he!) So posting about my difficult child then going to bed. Nitey-nite.
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh, absolutely! He WILL get up in the a.m.

    I'm sorry you're up, too.

  5. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I think you have to decide ahead of time, and explain to him, what the consequence is for violating this particular rule. So if you decide that it's to be X days, then tomorrow morning, explain that henceforth, yea, even forever, the punishment for playing video/computer games after "lights out" is "X DAYS PERIOD".

    Write it in large block letters and post it on the wall next to his bed if you have to. Maybe even above the monitor.

    We have same problem with difficult child 1 and his DS. It's 10:30pm right now and I'll betcha he's in there playing it. He's gonna lose it until the weekend if that's the case. Just like he's lost the use of his cell phone until his grades improve.
  6. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Terry, I would probably do an increasing consequence. If he is on the computer once then he is banned for 24 hrs. 2nd time 48hrs.

    The other thing to consider is collaborating with him. It's beastly to not be able to sleep for whatever reason(as I sit here at 4AM). Ask him for suggestions. Does he have any thoughts about what would help him to sleep or at least stay in bed? Computers are dangerous in the hands of someone unsupervised. In the end, I would ask him what he thought would be a fair punishment/deterrent for him when he does play on the computer when he knows he is not supposed to?

    Maybe then his restlessness would be a joint issue to work on as opposed to a behavior that appears to be oppositional.
  7. Janna

    Janna New Member

    His consequence, in my home, would be he's not touching my computer. Ever. Until I know I can trust him.

    You can password protect any computer so he has no access. My children don't TOUCH mine.

    I can tell by your post that maybe you feel kinda guilty, cuz he's up in bed and he is, what? Bored? Ahh, well - be bored. He can read. He can listen to music. Whatever his excuse, doesn't give him a right to be down on the computer at 1 AM.

    You can only give so many consequences until the trust is just gone. Sounds like you can't trust him. So, until you can - hands off. JMHO.
  8. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Terry, I agree with Janna about locking up the controllers/keyboards/laptops every night and password-protecting the computers. You need to "simplify the environment" (as in childproof) so you don't replay this scene over and over again -- and become frustrated over and over again.

    I also think you need to get to the bottom of why difficult child is not sleeping at night. The effects of Vistaril can wear off over time. He may need a higher dose or a different medication to help him sleep (all three of my kids have trouble sleeping on their own because of their disorders and take something to help them). This hasn't been a one-time occurrence. It has gone on many nights and needs addressing with the psychiatrist.

    I also agree with Fran about working with difficult child to figure out why he's waking up every night.
  9. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    I wouldn't punish this one. He obviously is having huge control problems so I'd be locking up the cords, just like I'd be locking up the booze for an alcoholic and just like I should be locking up the Easter candy for me!

    Since nothing else is working, I'll throw in a wild card. I'd think about totally switching gears by providing a viable option (like Ninento DS) plus a timer set for one hour, along with an announcement that he WILL go to school no matter how tired he is.

    The other thing I'd mention is to really do some hard thinking as to why he's doing this. Is it just obsession, or is there something more? I have one kid that plays 15 minutes of computer games before bed because it calms him down (I know, it's supposed to stimulate but it has the opposite effect). An obsession can be like a drug to a spectrumy kid--too much or too little and they're out of sync but they function at their best on the right amount. Is he trying to get to that point? Are there games he's craving but can't play so he's sneaking extra time with these instead? Does playing help him regulate his body or mind in some way? Have you had a sleep study done to find out the cause behind the waking? One of my kids had sleep problems (turned out he needed sinus surgery) and computer games were the fastest way to get him back to sleep at night.
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I have a password that you need to know to get on the computer. Anyone can set one up. If my kid doesn't know my password, he can't get on. I highly recommend looking into that! Make your password something your child would never think of and he won't be able to get on unless you turn it on for him.
    As for the consequences, just decide and stick to them ;) He'll be tired in school today. Bummer. Also, I think SRL has some excellent points.
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thank you all.

    We normally lock up everything at night. I don't know why I forgot the mouse last night. Although, to be fair, husband forgot it, too. :)

    I think difficult child's Vistaril may be wearing off, plus, he tends to do this after weekends, when he's been used to playing more games and having less structured time.
    I think he is Major League Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

    We have an appointment. with-the psychiatrist for medications in 2 wks.

    I think our therapist appointment is sooner.

    I am going to ground him completely off of all electronics for two days and two nights. That is all he can handle before he will completely give up. Then it's back to one hour.
    I was very lax this weekend.

    I also want to come up with-an idea for him to do something special for me, because I lost sleep because of him, because he was doing something he wasn't supposed to do. Maybe a neck massage?
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    husband came up with-an idea. He thought that difficult child stayed up late, or woke up again, on Sun. nights, because we had a looser structure on weekends. I went back in my calendar and documented the days, and found that is absolutely true. The exceptions were the Mondays that difficult child had off, from teachers' mtngs or Presidents' Day, so he stayed up Mon. night instead.

    We definitely have to tighten the screws on weekends.