25 completely (ir)rational reasons my child refuses to sleep

Posted in Preschool.

For someone so small, so sweet and so innocent, a child sure knows how to put up a fight, especially when it comes to naptime and bedtime. While some toddlers and preschoolers happily fall asleep whenever and wherever, others will pretty much do anything to avoid sleep.

My daughter falls into the latter category.

Here are just a taste of the many excuses my child has tried on in order to stay up a few minutes longer (and ensure I am one step closer to losing my mind).


1. “I’m hungry.”

Even though you were offered food five minutes ago? And you refused then? Hunger doesn’t hit until a child is horizontal.

2. “I’m thirsty.”

That’s so strange because you have a water bottle right beside your bed. And you’re not drinking out of it.

 3. “The blanket is itching me.”

The very same blanket that you’ve been using since birth, that was only just washed, that I’ve rearranged 15 times already tonight and that you have refused to sleep without every other since the day you were born?

Yes, that’s the one.

4. “The dog is looking at me.”

No. No the dog isn’t even in the bedroom. But good try.

5. “I can smell the dog.”

Pretend it’s a nice smell. Like cinnamon.

6. “I want a story.”

You’ve had a story.

7. “The TV is too loud.”

The TV isn’t even on. And, before you try it, the neighbour’s TV isn’t on either.

8. “I’m not tired.”

The yawns, eye rubbing and whinging would suggest a different story.

9. “I don’t like my pyjamas.”

You picked them out. And you’ve changed them three times already.

10. “I want to sleep in your bed.”

My bed is uncomfortable. And there’s most likely a dog in it.

11. “The picture on the wall is moving.”

Nope. That’s your exhaustion kicking in. You’re so tired you’re hallucinating.

12. “I need tickles.”

Okay, two minutes of tickles.

13. “Something is touching my back.”

It’s me. You told me to tickle you.

14. “I can’t sleep unless you sing to me.”

Okay, I’ll sing to you.

15. “You’re singing it wrong.”

How about we just be quiet and close our eyes and see how that goes?

16. “It’s too quiet.”

It’s supposed to be quiet. It’s bedtime.

17. “My finger hurts.”

No it doesn’t.

18. “My hair hurts.”

That’s not even a valid pain.

19. “I can’t remember how to sleep.”

Close your eyes. Stop thinking. Take deep breaths. And relax.

20. “I need Teddy.”

Teddy is right beside you.

21. “I need him to sleep on my other side.”

Then move him.

22. “I can’t sleep unless you tell me how many sleeps until my birthday.”


23. “My birthday is too far away.”

Go to sleep and it will be one day closer.

24. “The moon is too bright.”

I’ll shut the curtains.

25. “The room is too dark.”

For the love of…

Let’s face it – young children have the debating skills of highly qualified politicians and the ability to pretty much spin any situation that involves them going to sleep. But while it may be frustrating, just remember, one day they will be teenagers and then it’s pay back time!

Prepare for what’s to come with Children’s Panadol’s The First Five Years, a handy and easy to navigate book, specially developed to help answer those questions most commonly asked by parents with children aged from birth to five years. Children’s Panadol also has a great new interactive website called Buddy Bear that you can use to cheer your child up when they’re upset or need to take medicine. You can personalise it so Buddy Bear can call out your child’s name and sing their favourite nursery rhyme, which they’re sure to love. Because it’s always nice to have a helping hand, especially when it comes to your baby’s health.

(This is a sponsored post for Children’s Panadol)


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