why is it always at bed time?


Active Member
Oy Vey! Why is it always then that the complaints of odd pains that hadn't manifested itself until bedtime or whatever,
comes after the lights are out and the goodnights have been said?

Tonight, she went to bed. husband tucked her in and read a story as always. The next thing I know she's downstairs telling me she can't sleep (2 minutes later) and she's flippin out because someone took her pencil at school. She has 5 bazillion pencils in this house! Who cares about a 10 cent pencil??????????????? Every time this kid goes to a party she gets pencils and she gets them at school for various things. I have so many pencils, I don't know what to do with them all, yet she's crying over the one that has basketballs on it. She's been totally manic all day. She's been making me nuts the past week or so /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/919Mad.gif. rrrrrrrr!

I need a :smile:


Well-Known Member
Poor thing, she gets no sympathy from Mom over her most prized possession being so ruthlessly stolen from her? :hammer:

I don't have any advice on this except perhaps to have her sign off on a checklist before bed, include a slot for daily gripes.

Wiped Out

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Sorry she has been so manic. easy child used to keep things pent up til bedtime-I never did quite understand that.

Sara PA

New Member
I think going to sleep is scary for some kids. They really have trouble disconnecting from their parents (usually mothers). Seperation anxiety. Any excuse to keep connected.

timer lady

Queen of Hearts

I was thinking the same as Sara - kt's anxiety level is sky high at bedtime. She used every excuse in the book.

I finally allowed her to fall asleep on the couch & we would carry her to bed. When she got to big to carry, I'd sit in her room; many times she just slept in the living room. Having said that, she's now going to her room on her own. She still checks in on us a few times before she falls asleep but it's gotten much better.

Keep your chin up! This too shall pass :warrior:


I know this may sound counterintuitive, but one technique that has helped my difficult children go to sleep is to give them permission to stay awake in their rooms. I say, "You don't have to go to sleep -- you can draw, read, play quietly with a toy -- but you do need to stay in your room." I often find them sound asleep with the light on and a book by their side.


Why is it always then that the complaints of odd pains that hadn't manifested itself until bedtime or whatever,
comes after the lights are out and the goodnights have been said?

[/ QUOTE ]

No help here, but I know "The Stall" tactic well. difficult child doesn't do that anymore at bedtime, but he transferred that well perfected tactic to other areas. :tongue:


Well-Known Member
I've never thought of a checklist. Pretty clever idea to try. Now, of course, mine are too old for that..lol.

I, too, never insisted that lights be out pronto. Most of
the time they were as the kids were tired. At one time I had a special musical cassette that GFGmom could listen to
if she felt too "jumpy" to go right to sleep. DDD


Active Member
This reminds me of a cartoon I saw not too long ago - something about how, around the world, as darkness falls,(showing drawings of various families from around the world) comes the refrain from millions of voices and the last drawing is of the globe with "I DON'T WANT TO GO TO BED!!" in a talk balloon. No kid wants to go to bed, for whatever reason, and I think with a difficult child it's like everything else, it's magnified. I know when I lay in bed things from the day go through my head. It's just "more" for a difficult child in my opinion.

Sorry she lost her pencil, and that it became such a big thing just when you were supposed to get peace and quiet.


Active Member
I don't think this is a problem that's necessarily gfgish in nature, although if anxiety is in the picture bedtime certainly increases the thoughts. My NT daughter is the same way--sometimes it's a stall tactic, sometimes the result of thinking through her day, and sometimes finally being quiet makes her aware of all the aches and pains, itches, and bumps she's accumulated through the day. I had a lot more patience for it when it was anxiety than I do when 8pm brings on the memory of so and so telling her that her new haircut looks bad or a cut so tiny I need a magnifier to see it.

I have to agree with the others that the pencil situation sounds very much like my difficult child when he deals with obsessions and anxieties. Most of the time the response seemed so blown out of proportion in contrast to the problem and it *was* frustrating but the best way to help them is to validate their feelings so you can begin to move on. One of the things that helped difficult child through issues like this was that I worked towards him being able to count on the fact that I would work on whatever and build a system to do so. In the case of the missing pencil or any other school related issue, we had a home school journal and finally it got through to him that I could write a note to the teacher on things he was obsessing or anxious over. At first I would reassure him I'd write the note and even have to show him then as later he progressed to asking me to write the note instead of having the fit. I knew we were really making strides when he told me he didn't need the notebook anymore and that it would be ok to just email the teacher whenever needed.


Active Member
It's not all the time, just on occasion. It's usually the occasion when I've got something specific to do after they go to bed (she doesn't know that, so that's not the reason). Last night, I didn't have anything planned, just that she was making me nuts all day and I was glad she was out of my hair for the night. I spoke to her about it this morning and she didn't seem to care that much about the stinking pencil.

I think I will try the checklist idea. I will just ask her when giving her medicine before bedtime if she has any gripes or complaints or if she's forgotten to tell us anything. This way we'll get to address any concerns and if she suddenly remembers after, I'll remind her that she should have told me when we asked and bedtime means discussion time is over, she'll have to wait till the next day.

The only problem is that she will frequently will complain of a phantom pain right at bed time and if I don't give in and give her tylenol or something, she will carry on all night. I hate just giving into this type of thing, because I know the phantom pain wasnt there until she went to bed. the thirsty, bathroom thing doesn't happen. She can just get up and go and get a cup of water in the bathroom. I dont' care about that, she can just get up and do it.

The worse part about it, is that she disturbs Mighty Mouse when she pulls this cr-p and then he's up crying because she's pulling this and he's usually the easy one to get to sleep. Then again, he's the easy one regarding it all....he's the easy child.


Well-Known Member
"No kid wants to go to bed, for whatever reason, and I think with a difficult child it's like everything else, it's magnified."

I agree. EVERYTHING with-our difficult child seems magnified. They make a bigger deal out of it...louder, more persistent.

Wish I could be of more help but there are already some good posts here.


Active Member
Personally - I give in, to a certain extent. I have a jar of placebo pills which I've used for this sort of thing. It's partly an insecurity thing, a bit attention-seeking as a result. They just need to know that you're still there thinking of them when they KNOW they're being a pest ("I'm a nuisance - do you still love me?"). Last thing at night all the insecurities rise to the surface, like pond scum.

When I look back, I remember my mother handling things in a similar way. But she would let me have a dose of cough medicine, or get an aspirin, which with hindsight was not good for my health at all. A placebo would have been much better.

For placebos - I cheated, I used the sugar pills from my contraceptive pill pack. I took them out and put them in a jar, and simply didn't take ANY pill those nights because I could identify which ones were the placebo. You can also get placebos from the pharmacist, or you can use mini-sweets of some sort. I've used herbal options - a peppermint is good because peppermint can settle an upset tummy. Ginger also (which also can break a fever). For night-time use I try and only give them the sugar-free (Isomalt) options. More than one or two will cause some tummy pain because the body can't absorb the isomalt, it simply doesn't recognise it, but chemically it will stop water absorption by the small intestine/large intestine and cause diarrhoea, purely due to osmosis.
But one, tiny, isomalt breath freshener is a great placebo option.

And in the long run, you get more peace. She feels loved and reassured, easy child gets to sleep undisturbed and you haven't dosed her with unnecessary medications.

Another trick I taught my kids, if they woke up with nightmares - the simply act of changing sleep position will mean that nightmare cannot come back that night. I try to get them to talk about it so I can help analyse what is causing the nightmare (usually something they're subconsciously fretting about) but when they go back to bed, they should lie on the opposite side, so the old nightmare will just trickle out their ear and go away.

I used to get night terrors as a kid, I had to learn to cope because it persisted until after I married. Having husband there made it easier to cope and slowly I've been able to deal with it. For years now, I've had no nightmares that weren't medication-related (it's one of the side effects of antidepressants with me).
So I must have driven my mother mad, with repeated panics in the night and desperate pleas for help. We went through so much aspirin...



New Member
My JK always has problems at night. Headache, stomache, His leg hurts so bad he can't walk to his room, he is so hungry that he can't get off the floor. Very melo-dramatic. I tell him that a good nights sleep cures most things. I usually have to lay down with him and talk for at least 20 minutes, sometimes more. After 15 minutes of talking, that is it. I just lay quietly and no more talking. If he is still up an hour or so later I give him some melatonin. That usually works.


New Member
OMG, Loth, I had this problem foreverrrrrrrrrrrrrrr with Dylan. The only thing that killed it was the Abilify. Don't know why, but it did.

Does she still get naps? If so, I'd immediately cut them.

I do the checklist with Dylan. He had a chart hanging on his door of everything and anything he wanted to do BEFORE bed.

Smallworlds idea is a good one, although I'm not okay with my kids staying up. My problem is, when I say lights out, it means lights out lol. They would never go to sleep.

No real advice. Have you tried Melatonin? Are you having her checked for the BiPolar (BP)? You should email me and let me know what's going on. Haven't been here, I'm so sorry.

Hugs, friend.



Mom? What's a difficult child?
difficult child does the same thing from time to time as well... we have a weighted blanket now and a sound machine...I spray the room with lavender to help calm her... and then tell her a story to think about to help her with night terrors... so most of the time she enjoys going to bed, we also give her a little flashlight to look at a book before sleeping, she has never abused it so far...I check on her and she is usually asleep pretty quick. And when she is manic, we can't do anything about her going to sleep anyway!!! We also give her Melatonin before bed, and when she complains of the tummy aches or pains we use the placebo also- I use the Homeopathic tummy ache/anti gas stuff that was for my 2.5 yo. They both love it and think it is a super cure...

When she fights going to bed it usually is an anxiety issue, she is afraid of her nightmares, she also gets pains... or she just starts sobbing hysterically, and can't stop. Sometimes I have her do a handstand against the wall or I put heavy pillows on her and it really helps her calm down. (overstimulated/sensory issues) Or I will massage her aches away... My difficult child is not really trying to stay up, when she wants to stay up she says so... she is too honest still...

Good luck