• Kathy Whitham

Is Bedtime A Problem (Again)?

Has your kid started coming into your bed at night - maybe again, or maybe for the first time? Are power struggles and screaming showing up at bedtime now, even though you thought you were done with that?


In last Saturday’s Zoom group, a parent brought up an article she'd read about an increase in sleep problems during these times and shared the major challenges she was having. There was an immediate sigh of recognition and relief from the other parents in the group.


I know it can be worrisome and frustrating to have your child acting like a baby. It can be tempting to resort to what worked last week or last month, or what seems like forever ago to get cooperation, even though it’s not working now.


Here’s what’s happening. In these stressful times of change and uncertainty, your child is regressing to a younger emotional age in order to feel secure. Simply said, When we stress, we regress!


This can be so hard when you’re already both physically and mentally exhausted at the end of the day. The mental exhaustion is real! The regression is real!


I believe an understanding of emotional age can help in the following ways:

  1. To allay your fears about your child’s regression.

  2. To give you permission to connect to your child’s emotional age as it is expressing itself.

  3. To give your child what they need to feel safe and regulated and bring them back to themselves when they are ready.

In the long run it will build better resilience to respond to your child’s emotional age rather than trying to get them to act their age.


Here are my top three blog posts about emotional age and strategies that help.

  1. https://www.parentingbeyondwords.com/post/you-re-old-enough-to-know-better

  2. https://www.parentingbeyondwords.com/post/is-your-child-regrssing

  3. https://www.parentingbeyondwords.com/post/the-magic-of-emotional-age

Let me know what you think...

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