My 7-year-old is struggling to go to bed at night: Advice?

My seven-year-old is having trouble going to bed at night. We have tried everything besides melatonin at this point. Tv off an hour before bed, books relaxing lotions/oils like legit everything. She will go lay down but refuses to actually sleep until I and or my husband sit up in her room with her till she falls asleep, which is usually a 45 min to an hour task. She has every excuse under the sun as to why she needs us up there, and normally, I don’t mind, but it’s getting longer and longer. My husband always caves and sits up there and tries to make me feel bad if I tell her no as “what if she is actually scared,” but I’m telling you she is doing it because she knows she can get away with it. She plays in her room by herself or reads books in bed until we come up and is just fine being up there by herself. My 6-year-old son who sleeps directly across the hall (so she’s not up there alone) goes up and goes to bed, no problem. I guess what I’m saying is I’m at a loss and could just use some ideas or suggestions to try to get her to 1 go to sleep on her own or two cut down the time we are spending up there with her.


Start bedtime an hour earlier :woman_shrugging:


Try a weighted blanket

1 Like

Sounds like she’s scared of the dark did u ever think about that? Get some good lights for this child.

1 Like

Give her a time limit that you will be in there. Maybe 20 minutes? Read a couple books together and when the 20 minutes is up tell her goodnight and leave the room. I’m sure after a few days she will be fine.

He’s coddling her. She’s in total control of that situation and she knows it. Nip it!


Start bedtime earlier. Honestly it’s the fact that hubby caves. My 4yo did that for the longest time, but now that hubby or I no longer cave she knows she has to go to bed. When she gets up I simply say, “nope” and I lead her back without a word, she crawls in and I leave. She has a nightlight and even soft music playing to relax her. She rarely gets put of bed now.

Trampoline and a ritual movie

Put a camcorder without no one knowing.

When my daughter started having troubles going to bed we wore her out about 2 hours before bedtime, my husband and her would run laps in the house (open area) for a good 45 minutes, then she would get a snack, read a book, get ready for bed, and passed out. She might not be getting enough of her energy out during the day to go to bed at night, my daughter also has to have a fan on (she’s like me with that) and 2 night lights (one is a wax warmer for her room to smell good, the other is a lava lamp). It’s been working for us for almost a year now :crossed_fingers:t2: she turned 7 in May.

Find a reflexologist. They can help

My 7 yr old is the same and has been the same for a loooonnnggg time. She started having major sleep problems once she turned one. Lately she can’t fall asleep until close to midnight. Melatonin isn’t working. She has anxiety. She’s deff not afraid on a normal night of the dark. We’ve tried no tv ect. Nothing worked . Behavior wise though she is a challenge daily. So if I tried to say “3 books and I’m leaving” I would have a 3 hour meltdown.
How would that go for you? Give a time minimum: or a book minimum. Have a routine and that’s it. Be consistent. See how it goes? Maybe a warm rice sock to help relax her?

Melatonin is the ONLY thing that works for us!!

1 Like

White noise machine, cooler temp in house, weighted blanket

1 Like

Give her 1 gram of children’s melatonin 1 hour before bed time

1 Like

I had the same problem with my son the doctor recommended giving 2 mg of melatonin at the same time every night it may take up to a year, it because the lack the Natural melatonin in the system I am now doing the same thing with my daughter and she’s seven

Weighted blanket! My daughter slept in bed with us … ever since that package came from amazon …a 5lb weighted blanket… she has slept in her bed

Sit just outside her door way with the door open

Try a weighted blanket my kids love it so much it’s a struggle to get them up for school :grin:

Stand ur ground stop giving in to her shes old enuf to play u if she falls asleep while you sit with her then its a bad habbit by all means get a nightlight or glow in the dark stickers but unless u stop letting her win then get used to sitting there every night. She certainly doesn’t sound to me like she needs melatonin id do strict bedtime routine n stick to it maybe do storytime or a chat before bed downstairs but once you don’t give in she will adjust


I don’t even let my one year old get away with this. If y’all cave now just imagine what she will getting away with when she’s a teenager. Have a bedtime routine and stick to it. Do not cave and do not give in. If u feel the need to sit with her then 10-15 at most, read one book or whatever… But once the time is up then that’s it. No getting up no excuses. You have to show them early in life you are the parent or they will walk all over you!


Try melatonin a warm bath with melatonin bath salt or bubble bath before bed.

I set a timer with my daughter started with 15 minutes (you can start wherever.) I laid with her for that fifteen minutes then when timer went off I left room. As time went on I gradually lowered the amount of time down by 5 minutes each time. For a while I stayed in there for five minutes but then got to point she doesn’t even ask for me to lay with her anymore.

1 Like

I felt this in my soul. I l go through this every single single night and just went through this for an hour. All I can say is hang in there and hope it gets better. Classical music seems to help some and low lightning. Good luck!

My son has same problem. His doctor said he isn’t active enough. Let them play outside and run around a hour or so before bed

If she’s up there playing by herself just leave her be. Don’t mention bedtime and turn the TV on and just let her play. Maybe she will get tired and get caught up in the TV and drift off to sleep.

Some of you all assuming its automatically her just being a brat & wanting coddled need to piss off. My son is 6 & does this same thing, he is high energy so he needs extra time to relax plus has anxiety, even gets stomach aches at bedtime often bc of it. He is also scared of the dark or just being alone & worrying something bad could happen. Kids think & worry about little things more than you may realize.
Yes sometimes kids do play it up & know it will get them more attention but that is not always the cause. Honestly I do not have much advice to give, I lay with my son until he falls asleep. Yes it’s annoying & exhausting sometimes but it’s so much easier to get him to truly relax & sleep peacefully quicker that way. I have been researching & considering melatonin. If you do try that route, understand that children need about a week of melatonin every night for it to work properly. It’s not automatically effective.
Best of luck!


We bought our grandkids oversize stuffed dogs and at night they could cuddle with them and it’s like having a person lying beside them. …They would pat the dog to put it to sleep…worked great !

Set a time limit.
Stick to it.

I don’t have this problem but would a light 5lb weighted blanket help? it may comfort her. I put a few drops of lavender oil in my kid bath and on pillow. I also have glow in dark stars on my kids wall. It maybe exhausting laying w your child but you will miss her cuddles when she is a teenager.


I’m sorry but she is only 7 if she needs 45 minutes of your time to go to sleep comfortably then as a mother you do it! She will only be young a short time and you will wish she still asks you to stay with her in Just a few years! Enjoy this bonding time!!!


Maybe she just wants some time spent directly on her? She’s 7 with a sibling a year younger, perhaps she just wants to know she can have your undivided attention and this is the only way to secure it without resorting to bad behavior.
Is it that much of an ask from your child to spend time before she goes to sleep? It’s not like this will go on forever.


“we have tried everything besides melatonin”
…try melatonin


My husband or I laid down with my 8 and 9 year old since they were like 2. Finally a couple of months ago my husband said, ok you two are old enough to go to bed alone. July 1st we’re done laying down with you and we’ve had no problem. I feel your pain. We were laying down up there an hour to an hour and a half and that really cuts into things you need to get done in the evening!

1 Like

It might be exhausting , trust me I know as I’m typing this laying with my child . But it won’t last forever , you don’t see 25 year olds still needing their momma to hold them to sleep, one day she just won’t want or need you there. It will stop. An hour really isn’t that bad or that much of time . Maybe move her bed time routine up so you can start to settle her down with sooner , and then lay with her an hour and you won’t be as tired .

1 Like

If she is scared of the dark put in a nightlight (if she don’t have one). If she is doing this for attention just tell her its bedtime and then leave the room, and if she gets up and comes out, escort her back to bed with a “I love you, its bedtime” every time. And tell hubby he has got to quit going in there because that is exactly what she wants so she can stay up longer. My kids tried this and I did just what I told you…I can tell when they really can’t fall asleep or just faking it. So sometimes I had to use melatonin. If used every once in a while it’s fine. The body produces it naturally so it won’t harm her with a 1mg dose. It’s not fast acting so don’t worry about it harming her.

My kids are now 30, 27 and 24 years old. A set schedule is so important. We always had supper, bath, snack, books and back rubs or rubbing forehead until they fell asleep. There were nights when I was tired and of course didn’t want to sit for however time it took for them to fall asleep. But I would not have changed a thing and I am beyond grateful for those most special sweet times. My kids grew up healthy happy and are doing very well for themselves. Savor every moment because you will blink and your child will be grown.:heart:


What time are u making her go to bed

Idk, I still believe in spanking. Not beating but a good spanking


My daughter is 8 and still tried this. She really isn’t scared of anything (my daughter I mean) finally just got firm with her and said go to bed because your not making me feel bad. She’s much better at it now, but still has her days.

1 Like

Leave her up there by herself. You said she entertains herself right. Wake her up EARLY. She’ll learn. She’s 7 not a baby she doesn’t need to be rocked to sleep. You guys giving in doesn’t help

Watch Super Nanny on tv. She has the answer. It works.

1 Like

Tell him to be a parent not a friend, shes manipulating him


I second the melatonin. It was prescribed to my son for a short while when he was a toddler and was having night terrors and was afraid of going to sleep. I’ve since used it here and there for all of my kids, doctors recommended using it for a week or so to establish a sleep pattern, then on nights when sleep just seems impossible. I also second the idea that she may use it as a way of getting undivided attention, and unfortunately with them being close in age you can’t set separate bedtimes and spend individual time with them before bed, unless you maybe give them a 10-15 minute difference. She may respond really well to it and he might also in other ways. Mommin ain’t easy, I wish you luck.

Do not use melatonin the side effects can be nasty.

Stick to a firm schedule.

1 Like

My kids hated just laying staring at the ceiling even with a nightlight. I got them all there own lava lamps to concentrate on now there out in 20 min or less.

Spank her and send her off to bed. You’re the parent not her.

These spanking replies are deplorable!! She’s not actually doing anything wrong, just trying to spend more alone time with her parents!!! Oh she wants a little bit of attention… spank her! She needs to learn that she doesn’t deserve it !!! Ffs guys :woman_facepalming::woman_facepalming::woman_facepalming:


I think you need a no nonsense approach and a routine. Once you’ve read a story (get her to read it to you as this will make her sleepy and improve her skills), say you will stay for a set time such as ten minutes then go once the time is up. Seven is when many kids go into a different academic environment and its a huge social leap too so you could tie it in with that.

1 Like

My 9 year old has always wanted me to lay with her while she falls asleep and I agree, it won’t last forever. One thing that’s helped her fall asleep faster is having a set routine every night- bath, tv, ice cream, bed. You may try an earlier bedtime too. She listens to a book on audible as she falls asleep too, which helps. Now she’s usually out within 10 minutes. Hang in there!

Is she active, the more they run around and go outside that gets tired. Trying a light soothing massage, that’s what I would do with my son. It helps relax them. Also, a fan helps a lot too. Just keep trying different things and you will find what works for her.

Sound machine, classical music player, or audio books. I worked at a daycare, any of these put my 11- 2 year olds out like a light. I used it on my kids for nap time and bed time. My 10 year old still puts night time music on at bed time. On nights she is having trouble sleeping, we use melatonin gummies.

Try sound machines. My sons used one for awhile, then i gave it to their baby sister when she was born. Now they use a fan for the noise. My 3yr old is the same way, if i stay there he was lay and sleep, if i leave ghe room he keeps coming out and wont stay in bed. Its a fight everynight. I never sit in his room i got to much to do and im impatient. I jus keep making him go back to his bed and dont let him out. After three times the next day he gets no screen time

Be patient with her, you wouldn’t have to sit there forever, she will outgrow it. I had a granddaughter that lived with her mom and I and we had to lay down on the floor by her until she went to sleep. She is 13 now and doesn’t want you in her room!!:heart::heart:

1 Like

Remeber she won’t always need you. Enjoy the time she does

1 Like

see a doctor maybe needs a little help

1 Like

Talk to.her read stories together …enjoy

Check with her pediatrician

1 Like

Yes this brand I highly recommend… it works very well and it’s natural. But always consult with your pediatrician before taking anything!!!

1 Like

I had that issue with my 4 year old the dr tried putting her on a sleep med and she wouldn’t wake up for 2 days so we stopped that right away n switch to melatonin for kids and best descion we made. Its all natural and works wonders 1 Gummi 30 min before bed n it helps her naturally go to sleep. Her dr recommended it after the prescribed sleep medicine. We realized sticking with natural n just using melatonin was all we needed

If you do want to try melatonin, Vitafusion 3mg melatonin gummies works wonders for my boys age 10 & 14. They would have a hard time settling in bed & take forever to fall asleep. Then they’d wake up in the middle of the night & struggle to fall back to sleep. Just a suggestion :blush:

1 Like

I remember when I was about 7 (many moons ago) I would have a reoccurring nightmare. Same dream every time my eyes would close. Maybe it’s something that simple.

1 Like

I know the pain before we were given melatonin to try he would go outside and run all his energy off after school, come in and have dinner and q shower and in bed by 8.30 and it didnt matter what we tried he was always still awake at midnight and then every hour or 2 after that to the point he was falling asleep in class, then we were given melatonin and I swear by it. He takes it half an hour before bed and he falls asleep within 20 min. It has saved my sanity

1 Like

Lots saying meds. Has she anything wrong with her. All my kids have tried that age stay up longer. The sitting in there if she’s having nightmares get her to draw and sounds odd i bought my kids a dream catcher. Tell them the story of worked. Some kids aren’t good going off. My youngest 6 takes ages.

1 Like

I’ve heard about a ticket system from someone here cant remember-
Tickets for 5 or10 minutes with mom, 5 or 10 minutes with dad, and you give her whatever amount you choose at the beginning of the week.
Tell her it’s for emergencies only, and if she saves X amount of tickets she gets X prizes. (You decide ho many tickets for how big of a prize-keep them small though) and a bigger prize if she can save up all or most tickets.


Read books or make up a story with her! Good luck, hope some of these suggestions help!

Try a weight blanket, a fan for the nose(you can point it a different direction), does she take naps during the day if so don’t let her, try letting her play her heart out before bed, a body pillow she can wrap her legs around, MELATONIN!!!

Bath to relax, snack, 1 of my kids of 3. Watches t.v to fall asleep< he is scared of monsters, when I go check on him he is asleep and I turn the volume all the way down and leave the t.v on for calming.

Melatonin works wonders no side effects and she wakes up rested.


Melatonin. My son is 7 and has a hard time too…this works!

Also another thing- make sure you tell her WHY you dotn wish to stay at her bedside all night.
I dont know if you’ve fully explained it, but she might honestly think you guys have all the time and energy in the world to play with her at her will (shes still at that age where sometimes she needs things thoroughly explained to feel empathy)
And dont just explain it once, do it every time she calls you.
“Thanks for waiting for me, mommy hard a hard time getting out of bed shes so tired”
“I can stay in here for a minute, bit if I dont get the dishes done and the floor swept soon I’ll have to do them during our playtime tomorrow”
Dont try to induce a bunch of guilt, just let her know that her requests are having an unpleasant effect.


Mine may not be the most popular answer, but until she is at the point where she is able to easily fall asleep by herself, you could try incentives for staying in her room and falling asleep by herself. Whatever she is working toward earning should be awarded to her right when she wakes up each day. Maybe use a sticker chart with smaller rewards for 3 nights in a row, and work toward a bigger goal once for staying in her room by herself 20 nights or a month? I’ve never been above using positive incentives with my children until they have been at the point where it becomes a habit and they don’t require the rewards anymore.


I’m going to follow this. Having same issue with almost 4 year old

Have you tried relaxing sleep music? Our son did the same thing till we got him a sound machine.

Just stop giving into a 7 year old demands :woman_shrugging: if there is no medical reason for her sleep issues its simply she has learned to manipulate you as her parents. Let her stay in her room and figure it out herself.


She could be scared to fall asleep by herself!! She’s comfortable with you in there to fall asleep is telling you she doesn’t want to be alone !!
I agree with the other one who suggested maybe your son and daughter share a room at night time !!

Make sure she’s getting enough active time outside, sweating, so she “wares down” :heart:

Make her go to her room and go to sleep. She’s not allowed to come out unless she’s using the bathroom.
What’s the problem? Stop raising sissies.

Start removing her play things and leave her there alone with nothing to do. She has figured out away to keep parents at attention


Bath at 7 bed 730 that’s it dont go in, shes not to get up, be consistent


Maybe have her and her brother share a room for nighttime? It helps my girls sleep when they sleep together

1 Like

not a parent
If she really is scared, what about making her a bottle of monster spray?
I always thought that was a pretty cute idea.
Otherwise I agree that you do need to enforce boundaries. But as I said, I’m not a parent, so these are just thoughts, not personal experience

Maybe she is sensitive to sugar. Watch her sugar intake. This includes natural sugar as well.

Get her up earlier in the morning like 5 am

Yawl are weird. Children, no matter what age will always want cuddled and to not fall asleep alone until they’re ready. Unless you’re single, do you like being in bed alone? Dont you like going to bed with your SO? Falling asleep knowing someone is next to you or holding you. Dont worry, that sweet little girl wanting to be comforted will end sooner rather than later and you’ll be lucky to even get a kiss/hug goodnight before bed so just lay with your daughter bc soon itll be the last time and you won’t even know it. I know it’s frustrating but itll be worth it in the long run.


Maybe more outside time…get her body moving. It works with my son. I notice on days we can’t because of weather or schedule it’s a battle at bedtime.

My almost 7yr has been having sleeping problems since school went out in march. Im guessing many days she doesnt get enough stimulation, but we get out as much as possible now that we are in phase 3. Before i was giving warm milk and melatonin many times a week (when everything was closed) and we tried going on bike rides around the complex (wasnt enough) but now that things are open we use melatonin maybe 1 or 2 times in 2 weeks. Maybe she needs more stimulation?

What if you tell your daughter that you’ll put her in the same room as her brother? She’ll always have the company, but she’ll have to sacrifice having her own room. Might make her change her mind?

Try soft elevator music and rub lavender oil on her forehead❤️

Don’t use melatonin!!! Set early bedtime and put on sleepy time music. If not allergic also try warm chamomile tea. It’s caffeine free so you don’t have to worry about that.

Try a low dose of melatonin. My kids believe in it. Helps me too.


Our kids had a set bedtime but as long as they were fairly quiet, we figured they’d settle down and get to sleep when they were ready. Maybe you could tell her that she’s old enough to decide when she’s ready to close her eyes.

If possible, make her go to bed earlier to accommodate the time she requests and that way she will be asleep by the time she is supposed to be asleep. (Explain to her she will need to go to bed earlier) My son is also 7 and has the same book of tricks.

Who exactly is the Adult in the relationship>>

A regular routeen. That’s the only cure. Get up every morning at a set time, and a winding down and getting to bed the same time and way every night.

Some brandy will work too lol…but i tried the 3mg melatonin and it works…if it happens to me since the age of 20 imagine what they must feel…

One day it’s going to be the last day that child needs you, and you are going to be sad. She’s 7 for crying out loud. Go snuggle with your child until she falls asleep. Maybe it takes so long because she feels your aggravation towards the whole situation.

1 Like

Spend that time with your child all else can wait she will out grow it .you never know about tomorrow

Maybe put her brother and her in the same room just 2 sleep 1 time 2 see if she goes2 sleep or not…