Is 1am an appropriate bed time for an 11 year old?

mommakittyJanuary 28, 2009

Is 1am an appropriate bed time for an 11 year old, or am I just too old fashioned and making a big deal out of nothing? When my son is at his father's he stays up till 1am or later when there is no school.

At my house, 10pm is the bedtime when there is no school. Also, my son drinks (Starbucks) coffee when with his dad.

I am open to all opinions.

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As the mother of a 12 yr old boy, my opinion is no. 1am is OK for the ocasional slumber party with a room full of boys, but not for everyday. However, I'll bet your vote doesn't count on what he can do at Dad's house. It must be hard for the kid to live under different rules at each of your houses.

My favorite time of the day is usually bedtime. Which is 9pm school nights and later on the weekends if there is a good reason to stay up (ex: movie, sporting event etc)

Good Luck!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 9:59AM
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When the father and kids are having a good time together I see no harm in it as a special treat. I have more of a problem with giving him the Starbucks.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 10:43AM
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Ditto Stargazzer.

My DD age 6 has a bedtime of 7:30. When I was 16 my bedtime was 11pm.

Once in a while... fine. As a regular bedtime, no, unless he is able to get up at a reasonable hour consistently. Most people need more sleep.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 11:45AM
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If he's having fun, and there is no school, and he's not tired in school.... then once in a while is fine.

I wouldn't like the Starbucks though.

BTW - when my kids stayed at grandma's, (one week every summer) they were up just as late, playing 500 and watching Letterman, AND having chocolate for breakfast.
They grew up just fine.

It DID take me two weeks to get them back into a routine, but the relationship with their grandparents was more than worth it.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 4:04PM
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mamakitty - I think 1 am is too late to stay up. Maybe once or twice a year, but not 2 or 3 times a week.

As for the coffee, it's not as big a deal as our parents made it out to be. My 2 older sons both started drinking coffee at 12. #1 is 6'5" at 14, #2 is 5'8" at 12. It does not stunt growth, and the caffine doesn't "overstimulate" kids like the old wives tales say. One cup of coffee can actually make it easier for a kid to focus - but only one cup, and in the morning with breakfast, not at 10 pm!

Good luck in getting your ex to listen to your concerns!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 5:07PM
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My sons are 12 and 15. They sometimes stay up that late on weekends. The two of them and DH will stay up late watching a movie or playing video games. When we don't have to be anywhere the next morning, I don't care, they are hanging out with their dad, just being guys. But I won't let them make up for that by sleeping all day the next day, that would mess up the cycle and Monday morning would be impossible.

I would not give a child coffee. But Starbucks has other options, so a parent can still get a child a treat and not give them coffee. DD and I have a "thing" when I go to the grocery every other Saturday, we start with a Starbucks stop. She is 9, she gets a chocolate chip frappucino or a hot chocolate, neither are coffee drinks,

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 5:10PM
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My SD10 goes to bed at 8:30 and is allowed to read for 15 minutes...she is up at 6:30 am. She has complained about her bedtime and asked if she could stay later. My reaction to that is that when she no longer wants to be tucked in and needs no help reminding her of her bedtime she can stay up later. On the weekends she may get to stay up later not always. My DS16 often is up until very late. He has sleep problems like I do. When he was young it was H&LL getting him to bed and he slept with me until he was 7ish. I know, I know....but I tried everything and I kid you not....three hours after his bedtimes he was still awake. Since I had to get up around 5 I needed my sleep so I let him sleep with me.

stephanie has a good point about Starbucks. It depends on whats in the cup.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 5:20PM
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My DD is 11, and has to be at school by 7:30 so early to rise is tough without good rest. 9 pm on school nights. Maybe 11 on weekends. Midnight on special occasions like new years or slumber parties.

They are growing and need rest. With colds and flu going around, a good night's sleep is important.

My daughter can have caffeinated beverages during the day but not after 5, and certainly not coffee. And most days I limit to one caffeinated beverage.

I think coffee can start in college, personally. :-)

You don't say how long the child sleeps in either. But I hope not getting up too early.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 7:12PM
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When my son is at his father's he stays up till 1am or later when there is no school.

Since there is no school the next morning, I don't see what the problem is. Especially because it's happening at his father's house. Unless something is putting your child in danger, it's really not your business what goes on over there.

Also, my son drinks (Starbucks) coffee when with his dad.

While I don't think giving an 11 year old coffee is the brightest idea, again, he is not in danger and he's at dad's. Let it go.

Those are my adult opinions. Now, for a 10 year old's opinion:

My parents split when I was 10. I could go to my dad's any time I wanted, there was no "EOW + Wed. Night" arrangement. We did establish a "Thursday night date." I'd spend the night every Thursday, and he'd take me to school on Friday. Thursday nights with him were great. We usually went to the same buffet restaurant every time, then hung out at home, either watching TV with a giant bowl of popcorn, or tending to our fish. We each had an aquarium.

In the morning, dad would get up pretty early and get ready. Then he'd sing a little song.....the lyrics consisted of my name and variations of "time to get up" :) This was really difficult at first, because "the magic bed" was at my dad's. This bed was so darned comfortable that you never wanted to get out of it!

My dad also had season tickets to the hockey games, so during the season, I'd go with him on Tuesdays and Thursdays to the game, which meant not getting home until almost 11pm. I had to go to bed right away, but it was still very late for a school night. He always got me up and out on time, although I was probably pretty cranky on those mornings :)

My dad was 40 when they divorced, lived in a "singles" apartment complex, and had parties that I could attend if I wanted to. (I probably didn't know about ALL of them ;) I'm sure my mom was secretly having fits about that, but it was very cool for me. Not because I could have alcohol, (which I couldn't, and didn't want anyway), but they were just fun parties. I also went to the big annual blowout held by the complex, Bastille Day. That was actually an event that a kid probably shouldn't have been at, but it was huge fun!

What I'm trying to say is that some of the things I did with my dad at a young age might not have been appropriate, but they really weren't dangerous, and at 50, I still have fond memories of those times. They were very special and bonding. Try to look at things that way for your son.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 8:42PM
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Maybe I am old fashioned but I think an 11 year old should be in bed before 1 am-school or no school. The Starbucks is not a big deal. Does his dad work long hours and come home late and that is why he stays up so late? That would be the only rule bending I could see as legitimate. I believe when parents share custody the rules each parent has may be different for the child but if it is not harming him it should be OK. For me the 1 am is a bit much. Good luck in sorting this out.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 2:54AM
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My daughter is 11 and almost every weekend she has a freind or cousin sleeping.they are nearly always still awake at 1am or later watching movies in bed.I dont have a problem with it, she doesnt wake late or grouchy,so i see no harm in it,as long as they havnt got to be anywhere in the morning then i think it is fine,my daughter doesnt like coffe but i dont think that would bother me too much either

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 11:48AM
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Coffee is a big deal. I watched a TV show where they took several volunteers who agreed to quit coffee. After so long they brought them back to discuss what they went through. Headaches for weeks and sweating spells, etc.. The asked if they would go back to coffee and I remember one said no, never it's an addiction. If I had drank coffee as a child they would probably never found what was wrong with me. I have a very acid stomach, when I complained to my stomach doctor, he ask me if I drank coffee the said it's very hard on the stomach.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 3:10PM
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Weed30 - has some wonderful advice, well done !

Mommakitty- I think you have to ensure yourself that your son's father is a responsible person who will take care of his son - and leave it at that.

Going to starbucks for coffee with our dad, sounds like fun to me - good childhood memory.

For over a year now, we have a "walk and talk" time after school every day. We go for a long walk, and also include a stop at a coffee shop on the way. My DS is 16. It has been the best time, for just talking about all sorts of things. It's about keeping the communication open, not really about drinking coffee.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 5:23PM
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1am is too late to be up for an 11 year old. I also wouldn't give my 11 year old starbucks. Dad is probably trying to be the 'cool' dad or thinks these are good ways to bond maybe. If he only sees the kid EOW, then he probably doesn't want stinkin' rules to sour his precious time... or for sleep to get in the way apparently.

But, it is his house and it is his choice. Unless if affects the child when he comes back (like not rested enough for school on Monday) then there really isn't anything you can do and it's not your business really. Just as it would not be dad's business how you run your house, unless it's harming the child. It's a difference in parenting styles and the most you can do is tell him you don't like it but if you do that, you open the door for him to criticize your house rules, etc. (and it won't mean he will change.. but it could result in future conflict)

Let it go and wait for bigger fish to fry.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 7:34PM
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I don't think 1 a.m. is a horrible time for a 10 year old to go to bed on a Friday night or Saturday night if he doesn't have to get up early the next morning, and if it's not messing up his sleeping cycle the rest of the week. Particularly not on a Friday night, if he has Saturday night to get back on track.

My son did a lot of things that kept him up late on Friday nights, sometimes Saturdays at that age. Camp-outs, sleepovers, sporting events, etc. I slept over with friends or they slept over with me lots of weekends at that age, and we giggled long into the night.

I also don't see the coffee once or twice a week as a problem, either. Many people see nothing wrong with their kids drinking sodas which contain caffeine, but say no to coffee.

A kid with health problems or sleeping problems may need to limit the caffeine and go to sleep at consistent times, though.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 8:40PM
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Bottom line, it probably doesn't really matter what you think or what we think. There are enough varying opinions to realize that's just what it is.. an opinion.

Some people allow soda, some coffee, some fake juice. Some wake their kids up earlier... It's hard when there are two different households... but you really can't force your Ex (or whoever he was to you) to follow all of YOUR rules.

Personally, I would talk to your 11 year. He's old enough to understand that sleep is needed and so on.... Unless his dad is "forcing" him to stay up, he should be mature enough by now to know to go to bed by 11:00 or whenever. You can also explain the effects of caffiene and why it should be limited in children.. although if you allow him to drink caf. soda, you won't really sound credible... may be you could push the moderation thing on that. He's old enough; you should be able to get through to him directly.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 9:58AM
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Is 1am an appropriate bed time for an 11 year old?

On a weekend I do not see a problem with it! On Friday or Saturday nights we often have movie or game nights at my house. We stay up till wee hours of the night playing and laughing together. It gives us all a chance to bond because the weeknights are so hectic with homework and activities we do not always get lots of quality time together. And even during the day on weekends the kids may have practices or we may have things to do and errands to run. I would look at it in a more positive way because it shows that your ex is trying to spend quality time with his child!

As for the coffee I would not think it is a huge deal either. A cup or so every other weekend is not going to be any worse than a soda. When I was a kid my grandparents would give me a cup of coffee with milk and sugar with cookies to dunk in it! I have no health problems resulting from this.

With my own child and my ex I have learned that you have to pick your battles. If you complain over every thing they do that you do not agree with they will start to tune you out. So I only complain about the big things, and because I don't complain often my ex listens to my complaints more I think.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 10:01AM
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I would like to thank everyone for sharing their thoughts, opinions, and stories. I guess I am just more conservative than my ex, and more conservative than some of you. While it may not be a big deal or cause him any harm, I see nothing wrong with wanting some consistency in his life, because I do understand that coming from a broken home can have it's issues.

As far as the coffee; at our house, we only drink caffeine free sodas and only on the weekends. During the week we drink juices, water, and sometimes lemonade. I do feel the staying up late and the coffee drinks are a way for dad to be the "cool" parent. There are better ways for parents to bond and spend quality time with their children. There are better ways to be "cool" parents.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 10:31AM
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Mommakitty, I'm in complete agreement with you. "I do feel the staying up late and the coffee drinks are a way for dad to be the "cool" parent."

My ex-husband does the same thing with my daughter. Lets her stay up late, lets her eat cookies at midnight, doesn't make her eat healthy food, etc. She comes home and tells me about it. I just explain to her why I do the things I do (I want you to be healthy, I want you to be in a good mood the next morning so we can do fun things). I think that our children appreciate our consistency and in the long run will understand why we made the parenting choices we did (and why their other parents made their choices).

I rarely allow her sodas, and extremely rarely a whole one or one with caffeine. Juice/lemonade is also not served every day and when it is, it's real juice, not the 10% juice stuff. That said, I got her an ice cream the other day, but we keep the high-sugar foods in moderation.

If you've been reading the news about mercury and high-fructose corn syrup lately I think it's a good example of why we need to keep feeding our children the basics (meat, bread, dairy, vegetables, fruits) and stay away from the processed foods.

I know it's hard. I feel for you. But someday our children will understand that our way of showing love was to show them how to live healthy.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 11:39AM
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You know I'm not sure you're really after a solution. Like many separated parents, maybe you just want to gripe about your Ex? You never addressed talking to your kid directly... could that not solve the problem?

You don't have control over your Ex, but you do over your child. I have a 10 year old and when he goes to spend the night at a certain friend's house where they let him stay up til 2:00 or 3:00, I explain to him that he simply needs to go to bed earlier in order to be able to function the next day. He gets it and goes to bed at a more decent time. Can't you explain that to your 11 year old? I mean he's probably going to be offered many things in life; he needs to know how to say no. It's not too young to teach him at 11.

Just because dad may not make him brush his teeth, doesn't mean he shouldn't be. Focus on him.. teach him general rules of life that he must follow even if you aren't there to enforce them.

And, my husband gives my younger one coke at night when I'm not around and lets him stay up late if I'm gone. We're married. I'm not sure he's trying to be really cool, as much as a lot of men just don't 'think' or figure things are all that bad. Who knows who is right. Again, focus on teaching your son. My 10 year old knows not to eat 5 cupcakes in one evening when I'm not there. Just because my husband won't stop him, doesn't mean he'll do it. Focus on teaching your child how to take care of himself.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 12:40PM
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"You don't have control over your Ex, but you do over your child."

I agree with the fact that you can have control over your child to do things like brushing their teeth without being reminded.

But I can not imagine sending my kids to a sleepover birthday party or something and giving them a bedtime! And I can not imagine telling my kids what time they have to go to bed or what they can/can't eat at their other parents home. They are under their other parents rules when they are there. Just like my ex would not tell our child what he is and is not to do at my home.

I think that everything in moderation is fine. If you withhold sweets and things from your children all the time they will look at it as something they really want and can not have. Then, when they can have it they may overdo it!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 9:47PM
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So, you can tell your kid to brush his teeth, but you can't tell him to try to get to bed by midnight because he has a game at 8:00am the next morning and won't be able to do well for the team if he decides to stay up and not go to bed until 3:00? I never said it was a one time b-day party.. he spends the night at friend's houses almost every weekend and he knows what the rules are about getting enough sleep to function on the weekends. If he wants to continue sleeping over, he goes to bed at a decent time. He stays at one friend's house who has a single father who never, literally, never makes them go to bed. The father goes to bed and the kids do what they want... In fact, it is kind of like that at a lot of places. The parents go to bed and the kids stay up in the basement or wherever and the parents don't even know they are up. My kid went to bed at 5:00am and woke up at 7:30am the first time he spent the night at the single dad's house. I had to explain him why that wasn't ok to do even if the father goes to bed and lets them stay up, he needs to go to bed by a decent time.

And, there are many kids who tell me "no" they can't have soda or whatever it may be. I even had one tell me how long he was allowed to play on the xbox. Kids that age have rules that can continue on into other people's houses. They are 11, not 4.

A kid that age should be able to say no... say no to drugs, to smokes, to whatever it maybe that you want to teach him to say no to. She is his mom... she can decide. I personally think one coffee is fine, but she may not and she gets to teach him what she wants. And, just because dad or a friend may not make him wear a bicycle helmet doesn't mean he shouldn't still know to wear one on his own. Mom needs to teach him her values and not try to force her opinions on to her ex. Learning to respect yourself and your body and what you can do to it, and put in it, needs to be taught to children. Of course there are exceptions to every rule (a camping trip, a b-day party, an uncle in town who likes Starbucks), but those type of exceptions should probably be rarer than 2-3 times a week.

Maybe that's part of what is wrong with society today... parents who don't teach their children to think for themselves and understand the repercussion of things. If you set rules that are only good in your own house, your kid won't know how to handle the real world when he is out in it.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2009 at 12:22AM
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What I am saying is that if it is dads weekend then dads rules apply. Mom is not picking the kid up at 8am the next day for a game from the way it sounds so I see no reason why she should be deciding what time their child needs to go to bed at dads house.

My kids sleep at home most of the time, I can't imagine them sleeping over at friends homes almost every weekend. Maybe that is what is wrong with society....parents don't have quality time with their kids anymore. They just let them spend the weekends with other people and hope that they do what they are supposed to do.

I am not saying my kids don't know what they can and can not do....what I am saying is that when they are with their other parent it is up to the other parent if they stay up late or drink caffeine.

If my kids are with friends I am confident that they would not smoke, do drugs, jump on train tracks, etc. We have not had any issues so far and I have a high schooler, middle schooler, and 2 in elementary school.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 11:06PM
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LOL - You're obviously not a stay at home mom... I have more quality and quantity than I can handle!!! Plus, I really do like trading off with the parents and having his friends over here too and getting to really know them first hand.

Problem is, if the father allows the kid to stay up... the kid will probably sleep in a little and then have a tough time going to bed at a decent time on Sunday night and getting up on time Monday morning... I bet the job of getting him up on Monday goes to his mother. Probably not fun... An inconsistent bedtime is not good for anyone, and lack of sleep which usually follows late bedtimes, is not good for a growing child. It does and will affect the mom... maybe indirectly, but it will. So, if she wants to teach him why he should try to get to bed by 11:00, all the more power to her.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 6:13PM
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I am divorced from my kids' dad and went through a somewhat similar experience. The bottom line is, when they go to dad's house, it's inevitable that they are going to do things you don't necessarily approve of. Probably it's something that all divorced parents who trade off visitation have to deal with.

In this case it's bed time and drinking coffee. In the grand scheme of things, these are pretty minor. But I can see where they would carry great importance in your mind. Basically the dad is allowing your son to defy your rules when he visits.

How do you fight this? Trying to tell the dad what he can/can't do with your son is only going to lead to resentment and arguments, and in the end, the dad will do what he wants anyway, and even worse if he feels angry for what you've said.

Trying to tell your son to follow your rules at dad's house is also doomed to fail. It puts your son in a quandry - what are the chances he'll voluntarily go to bed earlier? And if he doesn't, it sets him up for guilt feelings and ambivalence about which parent to listen to.

So, what's a mother to do? My advice is to make sure that your son understands and follows the rules at your house. Don't pit yourself against dad or try to be the good guy or whatever. Kids need and want discipline (no matter how much they test their limits). You can tell him how you feel about him drinking coffee, you can suggest that he order the non coffee drinks at starbucks. But don't insist upon it. At 11 years old he's old enough to make some decisions on his own and this is a minor enough thing to let him do. And at this age, he also knows that 1 am is too late to stay up... but again, you can't expect him not to take advantage of dad's leniency.

As they say, "pick your battles". You don't want him smoking or doing drugs, and those are the kinds of things you have to stand firm on and make sure he understands they are wrong. A late bed time and a coffee every couple of weeks is something you should be able to overlook.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2009 at 9:26AM
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I am actually a SAHM. I was teaching part-time for the first half of the school year for a teacher on maternity leave. Now she is back at school and I am home.

LOWSPARK I completely agree with you! Don't try to control what happens at the other parents house unless it is putting their life at risk.....staying up late and drinking one coffee is not.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 10:04AM
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Well, maybe it's 'cause you have more kids then. I don't know why you would think I don't have enough quality time with my kids especailly if you are a SAHM yourself??? I feel like I am always with my kids and that they actually need to spend MORE time with kids/friends their own age, especially my older one. Just different family dynamics, I guess...

and lowspark wrote...

"At 11 years old he's old enough to make some decisions on his own and this is a minor enough thing to let him do. And at this age, he also knows that 1 am is too late to stay up... but again, you can't expect him not to take advantage of dad's leniency."

I must really have a great child! ... because I can and do expect my child not to take advantage of dad's leniency. Granted, we are not divorced, but my husband generally doesn't put my oldest to bed when I go out for the evening... but my child is old enough to know when to go to bed himself and does so. I know it's a different scenario, but bedtimes are bedtimes.

Aren't some kids even allowed to babysit (at least themselves) near this age? Do they just never go to bed since there isn't a responsible parent telling them to do so? Seriously, which comes first being able to babysitting or understanding what a bedtime is?

I'm sorry but you're babying your kids. Believe it or not, at 11, they are capable of knowing better and acting mature about their own bedtimes. Just because someone else allows a significantly later bedtime, doesn't mean they should take advantage of it. It's teaching them maturity basics and teaching them how to say no to something they may want. They can do it at 11 and should be. This is perfect situation to teach your kids how to control their desire and say no. They're old enough, it's still safe enough if they mess up, it's controlled. Try it...

    Bookmark   February 13, 2009 at 10:25AM
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Believe me, there is a HUGE difference between divorced Dad with visitation not enforcing Mom's rules and still married Dad at home not enforcing Mom's rules. It's different in so many ways... including, but not limited to, what they are doing until 1, what the dad says to the kid, how the kid feels about divorce, dad, mom, etc.

Plus, yeah, some kids just naturally go to bed at a certain time. Some don't. It's nothing to do with whether the child is good or not. It's just a personality thing. My sister always went to bed early (still does). She's a morning person. I'd stay up all night (and have) if I could. That doesn't make me not "good", just a night person. Same with my kids. Older son liked to stay up late, younger son liked to go to bed at bed time. (Now their both away at school and who knows WHAT time they go to bed).

    Bookmark   February 13, 2009 at 10:57AM
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You said that your child sleeps at a friends house "almost every weekend". At 11 I think that is too much. Guess we do have different family dynamics.

As for your issue with your dh being too lenient and expecting your son to follow your rules when your dh is home alone with him......well I find it sad that you and your husband are not on the same page with raising your kids.

My whole point with this post is that children of divorce have enough issues with guilt and sadness. Why burden them with more by telling them what they can and can not do with their other parent? If their other parent wants to spend as much time with them as possible on the weekend they have them and allow them to stay up late then it is not the end of the world! It is fine!!

And I am not babying my children by not telling them what rules I want for them at their other parents home. I am being the opposite of a control freak!

    Bookmark   February 14, 2009 at 9:57PM
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This just isn't a wrong or right issue. I, too, have one child who just puts herself to bed without being told; she's 9. I have another who will wait until he's told; he's 12. I do pretty much what I remember my mom doing. It's called "You're so quiet I forgot to send you to bed!" If he's in his own room (where there is NO tv/video games BTW) I can "forget" to send him to bed. He might be in the middle of creating a Lego or Erector masterpiece, creative juices flowing... fine by me. A few times I've even said "You can stay up as late as you want if you are cleaning your room." What difference does it make to me if his "cleaning" muse comes at midnight or noon on a weekend? DH and I are night owls, so I guess we just relate to do doing your best work at night.

So tonight, Saturday and the beginning of a week-long school break for us... my 6 y/o was sent to bed at 10pm. He played a game with his brothers and then was sent to bed. DD, the 9 y/o was already in bed asleep by then. She is a creature of routines, can't stay up late if she wanted to, her body just turns off at 9pm. So the 12 and 15 y/o stayed up later, working a computer game they were programming (something #1 is learning at school, and he was teaching #2 who was making contructive comments to improve the game). Now, I can't just stop that, brothers getting along, learning from each other, having fun. They were quiet, not fighting. Can't count on when that will happen again, gotta let it be when it does, if at all possible. LOL. So I just said to remember their siblings were sleeping, stay quiet. Oh, and I did tell them to brush their teeth before they got too tired and forgot. They quit around midnight and went to bed. I'm still here, piddling around, and DH is working on a project on his computer for work. You gotta do what works in your house.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 12:42AM
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Stephanie your house sounds like ours on the weekends!

Its funny that it seems like my kids get along best late at night when they know they could be sent to bed! Then they find all kind of things to do together nicely. Last night my 6, 10, 12, and 14 year olds stayed up late playing some donkey kong bongo game on our wii. They were hitting away at the bongos for hours! My arms get sore after 20 minutes of that game! So they were getting a good work out and having fun together. Today we have nothing to do besides straighten up the what was the harm in a late night?

I understand routine during the week....but when I was a kid the weekends were for fun and relaxation. It was a time when my family and I could spend time together. That is what I try to do with my kids.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 11:29AM
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mom2emall- that's funny. Sounds like our homes have a lot in common! We could do that Wifeswap show and feel right at home. There is a lot to be said for going with the flow.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 3:47PM
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I think to be on WifeSwap you have to be either a control freak or have monsters for children! That way you can go live in the opposite house.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 8:37PM
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Yeah, my kids have watched and said "We should do that!" I told them we aren't weird enough. That was when they saw an episode when the "new" mom gave the kids their way and proclaimed kids should not do chores. ;o)

I am way too normal and boring for any reality show.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 11:30PM
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I don't think so, particularly as there is no school the next morning. On a school night, that would be much too late, in my opinion. I let my 9 yo DD stay up as long as she wants on Friday and Saturday nights if there is no swim meet, soccer game, or basketball game teh next morning. (I'm not big on strict rules for such things as bedtimes. During the week she goes to bad anywhere from 8:30 to 10:30 depending on when everything gets done that needs to get done and after a little relaxation time).

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 4:53PM
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This was a funny post to me this morning at DS10 had a sleepover last night and the boys asked to stay up "late." When I went down at 9:30 they were all in bed asleep without any prompting from me. Our kids are in bed at 8:30 asleep at 9:00 weekdays and maybe 10 on a weeknight.

DD14 goes to be at 9:30 with complaint but she is and we have to take her cell phone as it is not unusual for other kids to call her at 10, 1030, 11, 1130 on a school night and wake her up?????? Kids are def staying up later these days I find.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 9:50AM
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I don't think it's right to tell your child what to do at the other parent's place, if it's undermining the other parent - if it's really a concern (and one should choose one's battles) if you can civilly discuss it with the other parent, much the better. Kids are stuck in the middle.

You also have to take what your kid says with a grain of salt sometimes ("what?? my child never lies..." hot flash- kids do lie.) - they will say what they think the parent wants to hear, especially if one parent is domineering or they are afraid of them.

DD would go home to mum after having an enjoyable stay with me and tell her nothing but bad things, things that didn't even how dad gives her a hard time about this or that. Mum mentioned it to me, and I had to say, not how it happened. DD thought it was what angry mum wanted to hear.

DD also mentioned to her sister (from whom I'm estranged) how she could get anything she wanted from me - not that I consider I was spoiling her by any stretch of the imagination, but....whatever. Mum, in a rare moment of shared co-operative parenthood told me how daughter had mentioned it, so I made sure I was not being hoodwinked.

I know two boys whose parents are divorced, dad is a nut job, mom is a basket case but keeps kind of sort of stable, keeps up appearances which at least means kids are fed, go to school etc. Dad is some sort of undiagnosed bipolar, does drugs at home, has way too much money and spoils the boys, has all night poker games etc. The kids can do pretty much anything they want and miss a LOT of school when they are with dad.

Boys went to live with mum. Went to school, things were a bit more normal. Mum is a bit uptight and probably wigged out about too many things but things were ok, but.... both boys decided they wanted to stay with dad.

Kids don't really 'get' consequences, if they can do anything they like and get away with it, if one of their parents allow it, they'll probably choose the 'fun' parent.

So son staying up late with dad probably isn't end of the world, but for your kids to get the best you have to dispassionately communicate with the other parent to do the best for the kids, and choose the battles. Unless other parent really is a (and not just you being petty, for example) danger to the kid, as it were, choose your battle, accept what the other parent does differently within reason, and never EVER undermine the other parent in front of, or to the children.

My ex did that, since long before she became the ex, and both kids can be people I don't like very much at times. Mum is suddenly realising this now, too late, and can't do anything about it.

On the other hand, newgardenelf, no offense but BE A PARENT - age 14 is young for a cellphone with unrestricted use...I would argue they should be set to receive calls only and only able to call you and emergency numbers....but here's a thought - 9.30 is a reasonable bedtime but that will have to change as dd gets older, HOWEVER - turn her phone off when she goes to bed. DOn't tell her, just turn it off. Not appropriate to relay calls after bedtime.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2009 at 3:20AM
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Staying up tell 1:oo is a bad idea unless for a special threat.( sleep over,new years) At that age they are growing and changing and its bad all around, If I stayed up that late, I'd crash.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2009 at 10:04AM
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I really do not see the harm in staying up late one or two days a week. My kids do it. They are all healthy and this does not impact them getting up on Monday mornings. But we are all night owls when we can be in my house.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 12:16AM
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Well 1AM is too late and coffee is not good for the kids if it is on a regular basis. But if it is on occassion it is OK, both coffee and 1AM.

DD was not allowed coffee. But we drink tea. Come to think of it tea has a lot of caffeine too (sometimes more than coffee). Plus some parents think that pop is OK but coffee is bad. Pop is way worse than coffee.

DD wouldn't stay up that late simply because she got used to sleep early and she would just fall asleep. She wouldn't stay till 1AM now either (unless she is at a big party or so), she gets tired.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 7:12PM
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1 AM is fine. Make sure he sleeps until at least 11 AM so he gets enough sleep, though.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 11:30AM
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