Does bedtime kinda suck at your house?
Be honest, do you kind of dread bedtime? Does your anxiety start to rise a little bit when you're about to announce to your preschooler "time for bed"?
“But I’m still hungry”
“My tummy hurts!”
“Mommy, one more song pleeeeeease!”
“Just one more book”
"Stay with me, mommmmmmy"
Does it sound like I have a video camera in your house at bedtime?
It usually starts innocently enough – “one more hug”, “read that page one more time”… and then a month later you realize that bedtime has spiraled out of control and now it's taking you an hour to get out of your kids’ room.
Stalling is just one way that our kids try and exert control over their lives. And, let’s be honest, they don’t have control over many things so they grasp at what they can. And, can you blame them? Most of the time it works, right?
So, to streamline bedtime and bring some order back to the routine, talk to your kiddo about what their perfect bedtime routine would look like.
Use a strategy called Guided Choices to put together a step-by-step routine.
->Do you want one song or two?
->Do you want to read a book before the song or after?
->Should brushing your teeth happen first?
But here’s the secret… include their favorite stall tactics IN the routine!
->You always want one more sip of water at night, let’s add that to the routine.
->Don’t forget the extra long hug before mommy closes the door.
->Are you sure you’re okay with only 2 songs?
Using guided choices to give them some control over defining their bedtime routine while prompting them to include their favorite stall tactics is the mommy magic you need to regain control over bedtime.