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Parenting difference of opinion

Mrs.Vader 2012/08/19 11:56:02
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The situation: 16 year old Teen stays up til 1:30 am painting her nails and reading. Reading is a good thing, we love it when our kids read, but she was yawning, foul and cranky the next day day, taking her foul mood out on all of us (except my husband who wasn't home). I asked her to not stay up late reading the next night so she could be well rested the next day because we had somewhere to go first thing in the morning.

Husband says as long as she is reading, it doesn't matter what time she goes to bed. Says I have no right to tell a 16 year old to go to bed early; she's too old for that. He said her tiredness and foul temper isn't a good enough excuse to make that request, especially if she's staying up late because she is reading. If we didn't like her attitude, then that was our problem not hers.

I say that I give her lots of freedom and choices and never ask her to actually go to bed early, so the fact that I did it this time, should indicate how much I felt she needed it. I also say that as a parent, I have a right to request any child under my roof not stay up late. Yes, reading is important, but my kids have many, many, many opportunities to and getting a decent night's sleep is just as important, maybe more so because the teen in question suffers from chronic depression.

So the question is, Is it okay to ask your 16 year old to please go to bed early if it's obvious they did not get enough sleep the night before?
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Top Opinion

  • ★misfit★ 2012/08/19 12:34:37
    Other
    ★misfit★
    +5
    Suggest it and give your reasons why, even though she'll probably reject it. But don't enforce it because ultimately, it's time for her to start making her own decisions in regard to what's best for her body. She needs to figure out her body clock for herself, and also figure out that people don't want to be around her when she's cranky. It's part of growing up.

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  • Nameless 2012/08/27 23:41:20
    Maybe....it kind of depends.
    Nameless
    +1
    It sounds like you need to take her to see her counselor and see if you can work this out.
  • Libertys Martyr 2012/08/21 21:31:13
    Maybe....it kind of depends.
    Libertys Martyr
    +1
    You'll be fine no matter what. If it wouldn't make a good enough headline for the Maury Povitch show, then don't stress too much about it! And if she is being snotty, separate yourself from here and don't tolerate it. Let her know she is making the mistake of staying up too late and that soon enough she will see the repercussions of her sleep deprivation for herself.
  • Mrs.Vader Liberty... 2012/08/21 22:51:28
    Mrs.Vader
    +1
    I love your criteria (re: Maury Povitch show). LOL
  • YepIDidItSo 2012/08/20 01:23:04
    Other
    YepIDidItSo
    I wouldn't give it as an ORDER per se because it will be defied. I have had talks with my girls (teens) about their attitudes. Discipline for the ATTITUDE, and she will just have to learn the reason for herself.
  • jubil8 BN-0 PON 2012/08/19 23:37:51 (edited)
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    jubil8 BN-0 PON
    +1
    Er, you're the PARENT. You don't ask, you TELL.

    On school nights I went to bed at 10:00 all the way through high school. If I had something important I needed to stay up late for, my mother decided whether it was something I should have been able to take care of.

    P.S. If she's chronically depressed, maybe she needs to be checked out for Bi-Polar. It's MUCH easier to diagnose when someone is hyper.
  • Fran-Halen 2012/08/19 22:30:46
    Other
    Fran-Halen
    +1
    Make him deal with the aftermath of an up all hours teen.
  • Daniel O'Hern 2012/08/19 20:45:30
    Other
    Daniel O'Hern
    I never ever stopped my child from reading they will teach themselves out of exhaustion
    To fall asleep earlier. If she develops a mood then she can't be with u and the bedroom is a good alternative. If u treat her with respect and that means no yelling then they will
    Learn, and it is learned behavior which should have started very young. At 16 she has picked up all the behaviors u taught her. It's not too late but if they took 16 yrs to learn they may take as much time to unlearn and it can only be done by example See my book
    Common Sense Pediatrics for Parents.
  • Mrs.Vader Daniel ... 2012/08/19 22:02:24
    Mrs.Vader
    I don't yell at her...I have no idea where you got yelling out of any of that....and I did not treat her with disrespect. I simply requested that she not stay up late reading because she'd been acting tired and ill-tempered all day long.
  • James 2012/08/19 20:32:24
    Maybe....it kind of depends.
    James
    +1
    Wait until she suffers a little bit before you come up to her and say "yeah...I told ya so..."
  • Mrs.Vader James 2012/08/19 22:04:48
    Mrs.Vader
    +1
    LOL We have had a lot of "told you so" moments here lately with her. I have to say, I get little pleasure out of watching her suffer the consequences of her bad decisions though, so I generally don't actually say it out loud to her even though I am thinking it.
  • James Mrs.Vader 2012/08/19 22:10:24
    James
    +1
    Some people are just bull headed.
  • mustangluver 2012/08/19 19:28:56
    Other
    mustangluver
    +2
    First of all don't ask. You are the boss till she is 18. You have to have rules and regulations to have an organized and peaceful household. They have to know what is expected of them. There has to be a bed time. I don't care whether they can sleep or not. It was 11:00 for my 2 sons at 16. I never "asked", i told! I put it in their heads that when they turn 18 and have a job and make a contribution to the household, then they can stay up till whenever they wanted. It gave them a goal.
  • Mrs.Vader mustang... 2012/08/20 22:49:10
    Mrs.Vader
    +1
    Well...in this case, I didn't want this to become the hill to die on. I do "tell" my kids to do stuff, but this time it was simply a request for her to her to get a good night's sleep out of consideration for others.
  • Red_Horse 2012/08/19 19:20:45
  • Mrs.Vader Red_Horse 2012/08/20 22:50:46
    Mrs.Vader
    +1
    Thanks! She's taking prosac right now. I was so nervous about doing that, but it does seem to be helping (that and therapy).
  • Red_Horse Mrs.Vader 2012/08/20 23:25:40
  • sglmom 2012/08/19 18:42:52
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    sglmom
    +3
    Have this respectful discussion with your 16 year old ..
    and raise the concerns you have about what you observe
    (in a non-confrontational way) ..
    with teens ..
    (Sigh .. I've raised my own through those years .. I've got the GREY Hair to prove it too!)
    the fact that we can gently broach this subject ..
    with concerns about their health and ability to be a good person the next day
    (greeting the sunshine with a more positive outlook)
    is the way to go ..

    (good for you wanting to talk to your teen about this! a bit of good interaction .. in a non-confrontational way .. (for example .. point out that you're so much more able to be positive about your day with a good night's rest) is a good thing. I'd also say that you might want to have a talk with your teen's MD or treatment provider about this staying up late too .. it could be a possible indication that the Treatment for her Depression (moods) is needing to be further tailored so that she can enjoy a better outcome .. )
  • Mrs.Vader sglmom 2012/08/19 18:56:28
    Mrs.Vader
    +2
    Well I know teens have a different circadian rhythm from adults and younger children and she's always been a bit of a night owl, so I do try to work with that with her. Her energy levels during the day are actually up, so I take that as a hopeful sign that the meds are working. I will talk to her and her brothers about attitudes during outings (we homeschool and educational outings are a big part it). This time it was her, next time it might be one of them...may as well deal with how to handle it before it happens again.
  • sglmom Mrs.Vader 2012/08/19 19:00:22
    sglmom
    +2
    And ..if things get bad ..
    Call your SPOUSE and let him pick her up and deal with the 'difficulty' .. while you continue on with the outing with your other children!
    (now that will get HIS Attention for sure .. and she'll have some quality time with him too!)
  • fortycal_sig 2012/08/19 18:23:31
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    fortycal_sig
    +3
    Key thing there for me would be _ask_. At 16, you're at the point where you're accepting advice and suggestions, not taking orders.
  • Mrs.Vader fortyca... 2012/08/19 18:26:40
    Mrs.Vader
    +2
    Fair enough.
  • ☮ Ron ☮ Paul ☮ 2012! ☮ 2012/08/19 18:14:45
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    ☮ Ron ☮ Paul ☮ 2012! ☮
    +2
    Lack of sleep can cause a LOT of bad things that can be detrimental to ones health. As a parent/guardian you have a DUTY to make sure she goes to bed at a good time because not only does this effect her but everyone else around her, (as you clearly have found out.)

    You and your husband need to come to an agreement of what time is best for her to go to bed. She should at least get 7 hours of sleep, 8 would be ideal. We need that down time to recoup from all the things that go on in our lives.
  • Mrs.Vader ☮ Ron ☮... 2012/08/19 18:30:30
    Mrs.Vader
    +1
    I agree. Like I said, she has issues with chronic depression and I know from experience that lack of sleep (or even too much sleep) can really make that worse.
  • Melicious Kiss of PHAET 2012/08/19 18:14:01
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    Melicious Kiss of PHAET
    +2
    2-18 Years Old: 8 - 9 hours per day

    Sleep needs remain just as vital to health and well-being for teenagers as when they were younger. It turns out that many teenagers actually may need more sleep than in previous years. Now, however, social pressures conspire against getting the proper amount and quality of sleep.

    Even though she is 16 she still needs a full nights sleep. for her health.
  • Shawna 2012/08/19 17:08:48
    Other
    Shawna
    +2
    I agree with the top opinion expressed by earthbound_misfit. She needs to learn by experience that staying up that late is probably not in her best interest. However you do have a right to react to the way she behaves because she stayed up late. This is part of the learning experience. If she is grumpy and rude, people do not want to talk to her or help her. If she is supposed to be somewhere and she cannot get ready on time she is late or misses that event.

    I am a teacher and one of the mantas we embrace in education is that students learn by doing not by being told. We can all relate to that idea too as we have had some sort of experience where we learned how to do something by doing it even if we did not do it well, whereas having someone tell us how to do it did not lead to a good understanding or internalizing of the concept.

    So just make the consequences clear. You will not accept rudeness or grumpiness, you will ignore it and not engage with her. You will not adjust your schedule to hers so she might have to get her own meal or arrange her own transportation somewhere. She probably feels like crap anyhow but if you tell her she must go to bed early she will want to do the opposite of what you say. Let her figure it out for herself.

    Save the my rules under my roof thing for the big stuff where you are trying to keep her safe or you need to assert your own values.
  • Mrs.Vader Shawna 2012/08/19 18:35:41 (edited)
    Mrs.Vader
    +2
    She manages to get up and out on time, but she was so verbally abusive to her brother while we were all out doing a family activity, that I almost ended it right then and there, but then that would have been unfair to her brothers. I guess I could just tell her that the next time she behaves like that in public (or in private), she won't be allowed to go on the next outing.
  • Shawna Mrs.Vader 2012/08/19 18:59:11
    Shawna
    +1
    Yes, I think that would be a good strategy. Nobody has to put up with the abuse so if she is going to behave like that her company is not wanted. It is also possible she did not really want to be on that family outing but did not completely recognize that herself or felt guilty about actually saying so. This is, after all, the point in her life where she is supposed to start separating from you and that is natural and good, but it is a challenge to navigate that. If she has grown up with family activities rest assured that she does value them but she is trying to find that balance of her independence and her family time. Find a time to talk to her when she is not feeling grumpy or defensive and find out how she feels about the activities and if there is a way she would like to moderate them. My son, who is nearly 18, rejected "family movie night" a few years ago because he no longer wanted to spend his Saturday night with his Grandma and Aunt, watching Disney movies. He still attends family dinners when we have them (extended family I mean) but he is not expected to want to hang out with his parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles etc. He has grown up with these family gatherings and used to play with his toys at our feet when he was little and when older enjoyed pla...
    Yes, I think that would be a good strategy. Nobody has to put up with the abuse so if she is going to behave like that her company is not wanted. It is also possible she did not really want to be on that family outing but did not completely recognize that herself or felt guilty about actually saying so. This is, after all, the point in her life where she is supposed to start separating from you and that is natural and good, but it is a challenge to navigate that. If she has grown up with family activities rest assured that she does value them but she is trying to find that balance of her independence and her family time. Find a time to talk to her when she is not feeling grumpy or defensive and find out how she feels about the activities and if there is a way she would like to moderate them. My son, who is nearly 18, rejected "family movie night" a few years ago because he no longer wanted to spend his Saturday night with his Grandma and Aunt, watching Disney movies. He still attends family dinners when we have them (extended family I mean) but he is not expected to want to hang out with his parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles etc. He has grown up with these family gatherings and used to play with his toys at our feet when he was little and when older enjoyed playing board games. I feel confident that he values his family and will always want to spend time with them. Right now, he often heads out after the dinner to do something with his friends. This way he gets the best of both experiences, enjoys some family time but does not feel like he is doing anything he is being made to do.
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  • XXrawwwrXX 2012/08/19 16:19:13
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    XXrawwwrXX
    +2
    if you have something to do the next day, and she needed to be up early, its perfectly fine to ask her to go to bed earlier. though, she is 16, it could have just been a mood swing, and when i was her age, i could have gotten 12 hours of sleep and i was still yawning.
  • bricklyn 2012/08/19 16:16:26
    Yes, it is okay to ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    bricklyn
    +3
    If the kids is under your roof she should be required to abide by the rules of the house. Even 16 year olds need adequate sleep. 11 pm seems like a reasonable time for a child that age and is not out of time considering she is causing problems in the household because of her late nights.
  • Philo-Publius 2012/08/19 16:09:40
    No, it isn't okay ask a 16 year old to go to bed early.
    Philo-Publius
    +2
    In my humble opinion her foul temper is a completely separate issue, and should be treated as such. If she's rude to you or your husband then call her out on that and discuss it with her; tell her you don't appreciate it and that you won't be talked to/treated like that in your own home.

    She is likely up until 1:30am because that is her best (or only) 'alone time', when things are quiet in the house and she can just kick back and concentrate on things that are interesting or enjoyable (stress-less) to her. Those two or three hours late at night after everyone else has gone to bed (and are therefore not harassing/nagging her) may well be something that's *alleviating* some of her depression, and without which it might be worse.

    I know I myself cherish the two or three hours in the morning I have between about 5:30am and 9am, before everyone else gets up. I don't paint my nails, but I do read and enjoy my coffee and write and think. Everyone needs 'me' time.
  • Mrs.Vader Philo-P... 2012/08/19 18:38:18
    Mrs.Vader
    +2
    when you mentioned that quiet down time, I totally related. I get up a couple of hours before anyone else in the house for that very reason...it's quiet, I can do as I please, and don't have to listen to a thousand questions/ bickering/ etc.
  • Brian ☮ R P ☮ 2012 ☮ 2012/08/19 14:51:15
    Other
    Brian ☮ R P ☮ 2012 ☮
    +2
    Rather than attempting to preemptively regulate her behavior through obscure and ineffective means, you should punish bad behavior as it happens, and explain exactly why you think she is being punished.
  • peaches 2012/08/19 13:56:51
    Other
    peaches
    +2
    It's different to ASK than to try and FORCE. Making a suggestion is never a problem, but you can't force someone to go to sleep...
    Being a 16 year old, I do agree with your husband.
  • ★misfit★ 2012/08/19 12:34:37
    Other
    ★misfit★
    +5
    Suggest it and give your reasons why, even though she'll probably reject it. But don't enforce it because ultimately, it's time for her to start making her own decisions in regard to what's best for her body. She needs to figure out her body clock for herself, and also figure out that people don't want to be around her when she's cranky. It's part of growing up.
  • Mrs.Vader ★misfit★ 2012/08/19 12:50:11
    Mrs.Vader
    +3
    We did explain why and she honestly didn't offer up any argument to the contrary. You are right about learning about her own body clock though and the consequences of her actions. Maybe the next time she's speaking abusively to people because of her lack of sleep, I can call dear ol' dad to come pick her up from the activity we are doing and let him enjoy her company for the rest of the day. ;o)
  • bricklyn Mrs.Vader 2012/08/19 16:24:58
    bricklyn
    +2
    Great idea. Let him deal with her.
  • ★misfit★ Mrs.Vader 2012/08/20 02:30:23
    ★misfit★
    +1
    Great idea. I definitely don't think you should put up with any abusive speech from her.
  • bricklyn ★misfit★ 2012/08/19 16:24:14
    bricklyn
    +1
    She is to young make her own decisions and should be listening to the rules her parents make. Teens need more sleep than adults do and their brains is not fully developed either. They are not mature enough to make decisions regarding what is the best for themselves or their families either. That is why they have parents.
  • ★misfit★ bricklyn 2012/08/20 02:45:46
    ★misfit★
    I personally disagree...I think 16-year-olds are in fact capable of much more than we expect today, and parents need to encourage a healthy level of independence. There was a time when they used to be considered adults for all intents and purposes. They worked, got married, had kids, etc., and it was okay. I'm not advocating we go back to that, only showing how there is nothing about the teen brain that renders them completely incapable of decision making, and they must learn to make increasingly important decisions BEFORE they are out on their own.
    Yes, teens do need more sleep than they usually get. Yes, they are going to stay up way too late sometimes. But I think they should learn their limits while still young and with relatively few obligations. Better to be late to high school than miss an important college exam or be late to work.
  • bricklyn ★misfit★ 2012/08/20 04:07:14
    bricklyn
    +1
    All kids are capable of much more than most parents are aware of these days. That does not mean they still do not need a lot of guidance.

    When they used to be considered adults, they also used to work full time and were expected to help support the family and being responsible as well, instead of staying up late and wasting time.

    It is better to learn some self control in high school so they have enough common sense and responsibility when they actually get to college where they will be no one to baby sit them.

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