Mum-of-four clashes with her mother and sister-in-law over her children’s bed time routine

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  • A mum-of-four has asked for advice after being criticised by her mother-in-law and sister-in-law because she puts her young children to bed ‘late’ most nights.

    The anonymous mum, who has one older child and three children under the age of five, took to parenting forum Mumsnet to share her dilemma with fellow parents and ask for advice.

    Writing on the website, the mum asked why other people ‘put their DC (darling children) to bed early …when it’s unnecessary?’

    ‘Mine go to bed at 9 and get up at around 8, sometimes later at the weekend’ the parent explained, confessing that the children under the age of five sometimes go to bed as late as midnight if it’s a special occasion, which leads their mother and sister-in-law to be ‘very judgey’ .

    ‘SIL (sister-inlaw) and MIL (mother-in-law) are both very judgey about my DC’s bedtime with SIL saying at the weekend that my DC must be ‘chronically overtired’ because they were still dancing at a family party at midnight’ the parent wrote.

    ‘The hours of sleep they get are actually no different but in my opinion a later bedtime means my DC can do more in life’, she wrote.

    The parent added, ‘SIL admits she spends every morning drinking coffee with the kids watching TV until 10 because she’s so tired, then if they go out they need to be home for naps by 12. She doesn’t seem happy with the way things are but so many people seem to think it’s just the way things must be with young DC.’

    The mum asked other parents for their opinion after being criticised for putting her children to bed ‘late’

    The mum finished her post by asking: ‘Am I being unreasonable to not understand the obsession with early bedtimes, coupled with complaints about early rises?’

    Reactions to the post from other parents were divided, with some agreeing with the mum: ‘Whatever works for a happy family life!’

    However, others suggested that children needed early bedtimes because it is ‘good for their health’ and also allows parents to spend quality time together without the kids around.

    ‘My darling daughter has to have an early bedtime if we are to spend any time together as a couple’ commented one mum.

    Another said, ‘Since dropping his nap my child is going to bed at 630 and it’s wonderful. I really need my evenings. I would never see my husband otherwise. It works for us and my mental health. Yours seems to work for you. Stop judging.’

    However another mum wrote: ‘I take on board people points about not always having a choice with early risers etc, but I can’t see why anyone would think being woken by children at 5am was something to AIM for.’

    What do you think about the mum’s dilemma? Share your thoughts on the debate with us in the comment box below!

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