From The Confessional: Thoughts About The Bedtime Sh*tshow

by Karen Johnson
Originally Published: 
Thoughts About The Bedtime Sh*tshow

Before having kids, no one warns us about how hard bedtime is—especially when you have toddlers and young kids. I mean, maybe they try, but can you really convey the level of suckage that is those final hours of the day when you just need your kids to go. the fuck. to. sleep so you can have your first quiet minute to yourself, watch grownup TV, and eat the good snacks? Those last minutes that seem to drag on for an eternity, and you become convinced that the final circle of hell is lined with small children asking for more water and wanting to tell you “one more thing” about Pokemon.

And, now that we’re quarantined with them, and there is no escape, the golden hour post-bedtime is that much more glorious. And that much more crucial to our well-being.

So no, before having kids, you can’t really prepare for this grueling nightly process, but once you become a parent to tiny bedtime terrorists, you know. However, there is hope, friends. It does get better. As they get older and more independent, it’s not quite as hellish. Or, you stop caring as much if they stay up late because their bodies have an easier time recovering the next day and they don’t flop like fish into a puddle of emotion because they were up until 8:45.

So hang in there, hold strong against the current, and know that at some point, they will go to sleep. I mean, they have to, right?

How does everyone else have kids who sleep... then there's me pleading with my 2 year old at midnight to go to bed. I'm exhausted and just want one night without a bedtime battle.

Confessional #25758977

I look forward to bedtime all day long. My own bedtime. All. Day. Long.

Confessional #25779282

Come on kid it is 10 pm. You should be asleep. Can you just stop NEEDING things?? Ugh

Confessional #25780360

39 years old and just don't have the desire to make time for sex. At bedtime I'm so tired I just want to sleep. Anyone else?

Confessional #25748510

I thought bedtime sucked before self isolation... OH MY LORD. I need this all to end so I can take my kid somewhere else, wear him out, and have a NORMAL bedtime routine again.

Confessional #25778007

As parents of willful little beings who are up our ass-cracks every second of the day right now, we all gotta do what we gotta do to get through this. Even if that means indulging in a little mommy-medicine after bedtime. Or ditching the bedtime routine altogether. No judgment!

I'm a weed after bedtime mom and I'm not ashamed

Confessional #25769391

It's 5:30 PM here and my kids are taking a late nap. Bedtime might not go so well, but I'm enjoying the quiet.

Confessional #25766656

I stopped doing the long nights with the baby , started sleeping in letting him do bedtime. Fell asleep whenever. Let some of the important shit go & it's amazing because now he's irritable and just like I was. Nobody gives AF about moms until they stop.

Confessional #25761084

Wtf do i care if my kds have a bedtime? Homeschool for us on my terms we all get to sleep late watch YouTube and finish schoolwork in 4 hours, then i can drink and play games or puzzles with kids theN go to bed and flick the bean

Confessional #25776018

The worst is when the other members of your family—kids, spouse, in-laws—don’t really get what “bedtime” means, and you’re just desperate for them to be on the same page as you.

Am I the only one whose kids hear the word "bedtime" and decide to beat the shit out of eachother?

Confessional #25762756

I wish DH would help with bedtime routines. Maybe then he'd understand why you CAN'T WALK INTO THE TODDLER'S ROOM AND TURN ON A F#$&+*# TOY. Who gets to deal with the kid who is awake again and won't sleep and will be a TERROR tomorrow. Yeah, not DH.

Confessional #25760775

Even when DH agrees to handle bedtime, I'm still the one telling DD9 to brush teeth, put on her pajamas, etc., so she gets into bed before 10. What does he think "bedtime" means??

Confessional #24937024

You do you SIL but do not come into my house and expect me to change the way I parent because you do things differently. Yes~ I think my kids both under 3 need a bedtime... even if it means they miss out on things that happen later at night.

Confessional #24486676

We’ve all been there at some point (some weeks we’re there every night)—when we are officially losing our shit. When the despair hits and you start to worry that they’ll never actually go to sleep and this is how it ends for you.

my 2.6 yr old fights every nap and bedtime. I just laid in bed with her for TWO. HOURS. while she fought going to sleep. i am reaching the end of my rope and i cannot deal!! like i cant breathe right now from the stress and anger of it

Confessional #25777193

My mom commented on how calm I was and what great boundaries I've set with my 21 month old. She doesn't witness bedtime when I feel THISCLOSE to losing my shit. Why do kids hate going to sleep so much?! Ugh. I am NOT calm right now.

Confessional #25755331

I’m a monster at bedtime

Confessional #25749114

And you’ll literally do anything to get them to go. the fuck. to sleep. Anything.

I follow the same f-ing routine for bedtime. Why does it work magically most of the time and then just epically NOT others? Right now is one of the NOTS and I'm losing my mind. Go the F to sleep!

Confessional #25753864

I really fucking hate bedtime, little fuckers just running all around. Just GO THE FUCK TO SLEEP!!!!!

Confessional #25778665

Dd3 is a bedtime terrorist. Same schedule , no nap and the last 2 nights she's refused any sleep until midnight. Completely taking away any chance I have to get a break from the bb or get shit done. I just want her to go to sleep.

Confessional #25752898

I can’t fucking take this shit anymore. Bedtime is a complete nightmare, it takes 3 hours to get these fuckers down. Then they keep getting back up and I’m losing my fucking mind.

Confessional #25750367

But good news! They aren’t three years old forever. Some day they won’t fight you as much. Someday they’ll put themselves to bed. Someday you might even laugh or have a joyous moment at bedtime. Hard to believe, but it’s true.

The past two nights halfway through our bedtime routine, my 3 year old pushed me away and said “you can go now! I’m not even sad about it. I love her to death but SO happy she’s getting older and more independent.”

Confessional #25755850

Used 2 lay w/ kids till they fell asleep n sneak out. 1 night they were jacking around for an hour. Said I've had enough. Walked out, they cried for a min and after that I lay them down, kiss night n shut door. Bedtime is way easier now!

Confessional #25750159

DD9 said something so funny at bedtime, it took us 15 minutes to stop laughing long enough to read a bedtime story. I hope she remembers stuff like that when she grows up.

Confessional #24843542

So yeah, bedtime is pretty much the worst. It’s right up there with potty-training and cooking dinners they’ll eat on the “what parts of parenthood beat you down and reduce you to a shell of the person you used to be” list. Hang in there, parents! You only have to do this like 987,000 times.

This article was originally published on