My child won’t go to bed and stay there

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Danger Zone: Toddler bedtime problems

The clock continues to tick: past 8pm, past 9pm. Your toddler keeps getting out of bed—or is still up. "I'm not tired,” “I’m thirsty” and “I’m hungry” are arguments you are all too familiar with. When your child or toddler won't go to bed or won't go to sleep, it can be upsetting for everyone in the family. So if you are dealing with the dreaded scenario of a toddler screaming at bedtime and want to know how to get a toddler to sleep in their bed, and wake up there, it helps to understand how situations like this occur.

What are common bedtime problems?

If setting up your child’s bedtime routine is difficult or stressful, it is probably also having an effect on other parts of your life. Your relationship might be starting to suffer, or your child (and you) will not be getting enough sleep to grow and function well.

Common issues you may battle when getting your child or toddler to sleep include:

  • Dawdling or going to bed slowly
  • Crying or calling out once in bed
  • Waking or having nightmares during the night
  • Ignoring instructions, complaining or refusing to sleep in their bed
  • Getting into your bed, or a sibling's

Why do bedtime problems happen?

Sometimes there may be very simple reasons for bedtime problems—your child is unwell, over-excited, over-stimulated, or stressed. These are usually temporary problems and will settle when thing go back to normal.

Sometimes you can do things (without meaning to) to make bedtime less dreamy than it could be:

  • By arguing, answering questions or reading one more book you may be accidentally rewarding your child’s sleep-avoiding behaviors
  • Rocking or soothing your child to sleep when they were a baby could have formed a habit that they may still expect now
  • Children like boundaries and are more likely to go to bed without a fuss when they have a consistent bedtime routine

...or maybe all of these things at once!

It is possible to get a better bedtime routine

If a crying, procrastinating child, or a child who won’t go to bed and stay there is the norm for your family then you are almost certainly dealing with the effects of exhaustion too! Put a stop to the tears, excuses and attention seeking tactics so the whole family can get a good night’s sleep—and be happier and healthier for it!

4 million+ parents
have been helped to settle bedtime problems...
and much more!

You can achieve your parenting goals with the Triple P’s toolkit of parenting solutions and strategies. The Triple P – Positive Parenting Program® is the world’s most widely researched parenting program with 35+ years of scientific testing and re-testing, and hundreds of clinical trials and real-world studies that prove it works for most families. It is used in 40+ U.S. states and can work for you too—and it is available online!

Find out more about Triple P

Why is Triple P's positive parenting program so different? Because it gives you proven strategies to help you set up your child for life—so they'll be happy, confident and successful. In the meantime, your home life will be better too… with rules followed, relationships stronger and parents who are much less stressed! Do you want to find out more about Triple P and how positive parenting can make that happen for you? It's all here…

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