This Is Why My Kids Don’t Give Me Any Problems At Bed Time

March 27, 2017

I don’t have any problems getting my 3 year old and 5 year old ready for bed.

I know you do though.

If getting your little ones into bed were easy peasy you wouldn’t have been so interested in reading this post, now would you?

I don’t mean to gloat but I’m just so happy that I can get two kids into bed very easily and it doesn’t require much effort to do it either.  Seriously, the only thing I do is threaten them.  Yup, thats right, I threaten them.

Is that the side eye you’re giving me? I can feel it. Like you don’t threaten your kids…

Threaten is such a harsh word huh? It gets a bad wrap, but let me explain.  Every night my kids go to bed at 8:30pm.  When the clock strikes 8:30, I say “Time for bed guys!”  The response I want to hear every night is “Okie mommy!” But who am I kidding?  Every now and then I hear:

“I don’t want to go to bed!”
Or my favorite “I’m not tired!” (As if that even matters).

If this happens my kids know they have to go to bed an hour early the next night.  And no one wants to go to bed at 7:30pm while everyone is still up!

So that’s the threat, if you whine or give any pushback when it’s time for bed, you have to go to bed an hour early the next night. And when the next night comes we COMMIT.  This is the only way it will work, if you commit.  They need to see that you deliver on your threats. And you if you have any other children who get to witness the delivery of said threat, they too will understand you’re serious.

Around 5pm hubby and I start announcing the early bed time for all offenders…

“Last night you complained about going to bed and because of that you have to go to bed early.  Which means we need to take your bath now and you won’t have much time to play or use the computer because you have to go to bed early.”  We say this about 3x until bath time to really hone it in.

Then during bath time we remind the offender, “I really hope you don’t have to go to bed early tomorrow as well.  As long as you go to bed early tonight with no complaining you will go to bed at your normal bed time tomorrow. But if you decide you’re going to whine or complain about going to bed early tonight, then unfortunately, you will have to go to bed early tomorrow as well. Do you want that?”

The answer is always NO and they go to bed early with NO PROBLEMS.  The following night because they experienced the early bed time, they give no problems as well. And the non offending child witnessed the punishment and surely doesn’t want to experience an early bedtime.

Problem solved!

You Might Also Like


  • Reply Shereese March 27, 2017 at 10:28 am

    I absolutely love this article. It was so helpful and it has changed bedtime being a war and having peace at bedtime. Thanks so much Jenell for sharing all that you do with us.

  • Reply Noche April 5, 2017 at 8:37 am

    Ha! Great way to get the kids in bed on time. I think I will try this because every now and again I get some push back as well. Just curious what made you decide on a hour early as oppose to maybe let’s say 1/2 hour? And does the hour early bed time effect the rest of your scheduled routine for the night? As I think about this, it would truly effect the household where they cook daily after work and do homework. I really appreciate your tips. Now can you leave a tip or two for the kids who don’t want to do homework! 🙁

    • Reply Jenell B Stewart April 6, 2017 at 8:56 am

      I chose an hour because I wanted it to feel like a punishment. An hour in your room while everyone in the house is still up can feel like torture because you’re not really sleepy and the house isn’t quiet either. For us, the hour doesnt effect our schedule because we have dinner, then we go into bath time and then they have about an hour or two to play. So they lose that play time or the play time is shortened. If this is a punishment you want to instill you will have to plan for it. I also want to remind you that if you do this just once the likelihood your child will give you problems around bed time are very slim. And if they do, because let’s be honest, they are kids, it’s not going to happen again anytime soon. So don’t worry about it too much because this is not something you have to do 5 nights a week. One night with this and your child will get the point.

      As for homework, I find if you can make it a family affair it helps. I like to sit with Joel while they does his homework and simultaneously I’m either doing some work on my computer or reading a book. It sets the tone that we are all doing work. If this isn’t an option for you, consider getting homework done before they begin any evening activities. It may be obvious but if you’ve not done your homework you can’t play, watch tv, use the computer or tablet etc.

  • Reply LaKayla April 6, 2017 at 2:11 pm

    This is a great idea! I am definitely going to start “threatening” my 5 year old with going to be early. Its amazing how as I read your blog I can hear you actually saying certain things LOL! I think a bedtime routine would be a great video on your YT channel one day. Also, do you have any tips on getting a 1 year old (almost 2) to sleep in their own bed. Nothing seems to be working. Thanks in advnace!

  • Reply Camille April 27, 2017 at 4:42 pm

    Do your children sleep in the same room? If so, do they actually lay down and sleep when you put them down, or do they talk and play together until they eventually fall asleep? I have 2 and 4 year old girls and they share a room (and bed…), but if I left them to their own devices, they would constantly leave the room or be playing/jumping/singing in their room until I told them to lay down and quiet down.

  • Leave a Reply