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23 real excuses your kids make when they’re just not ready for bed

Allie Early
Written by
Allie Early

Moms and Dads don’t have it easy at bedtime—when it’s time for a tuck-in, the kids will make every excuse possible for just a little more playtime. If one story time just isn’t enough (it won’t be), you may need to read through all of our 73 best kids’ books before they’ll fall asleep.

Here are some real-life bedtime excuses from our readers: 

“She told me, ‘I can't go to bed. I'm a princess and my work in the village isn't done. I have to finish my princess work. If you could go away, that would be great.’” —Hillary

“She couldn’t find her wallet. That had no money in it. Then her pajama shirt wasn’t the right one.” —Brooke

“He needed to be wrapped like a burrito. He shook the covers off and needed to be wrapped like a burrito again. Then, he poked his toes out and they were sticking out too much. And then there was a truck in his bed, but not the truck he wanted.” –Enisio 

“She wanted to wear her first day of school outfit to bed and couldn’t sleep until she had at least one of the pieces of clothing on.” —Ali

“She needs to read all of her books, go to the bathroom 100 times, drink water multiple times…she also needs to say goodnight to my husband Mike at least two or three times.”  —Abby 

“Two weeks ago my youngest Eian decides to walk down the stairs and say ‘Good morning, Daddy’ happy and smiling. So I tell him "Eian it's 11pm, it's not morning so go back to sleep.’ He puts his act on—like an old man, back hunched over—holding his stomach instantly acting with pain ready for war he says 'Oh my god Dad I can't take this pain. It hurts so much I can't sleep, my stomach hurts.'" —William

“The kids are going as Aurora and a knight for Halloween. The other night she couldn't go to bed because, ‘Mom, you are a princess and I am a knight and knights watch princesses when they sleep and protect them.’ She then asked me for a pet dragon.” —Jon

“She needed to know if she could please have her snack that she forgot about. Since my son had the snack and she didn’t.” —Jayden 

“She says she doesn’t know how to sleep.” —Katie

“My oldest genuinely believes she doesn’t/hasn’t/won’t sleep. When we say anything about her sleeping she gets confused and indignant.” —Nolan 

More awesome kid quotes submitted by parents:

“My bed is too cold.”

“I don’t know how to close my eyes.”

“You’re being too quiet, and I’m afraid we’re all alone. You need to make more noise.”

“My pillow is too hot.”

“I need to put all my dolls to sleep because otherwise they will be cold and need me.”

“I have to pee.” And then he takes a really long time and doesn't pee.

“I’m stuck in the bathroom.”

“There’s a weird sound.” 

“I need to tell you a secret and it's really important."

“I forgot to kiss Kitniss” (her cat).

“I don’t know how to get comfortable.”

“The dog is too smelly,” then “I can’t sleep without the dog.”

“Does Santa sleep?”

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