37 answers

HELP!!! 12 Year Old That Doesn't Want to Wake up for School

I have tried everything. About 6 months ago, I put a similar request on here and got what I thought were some good ideas. My son is very stubborn. I have tried giving him a glass of orange juice because I heard that orange juice wake you up. I also tried to wake him and give him the opportunity to take a shower. That worked for a little bit but now he gets up takes a shower and then lays down and falls back asleep. Please give me some good suggestions. He is not a morning person so fighting with him is not the answer because the last thing that we need is for him to got off to school crabby or say he is not going!!!!.............HELP ME MOM'S!!!!!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Okay, so I still welcome all advice that you can send to me. Every bit of it helps. It is a lot to take in. Today, October 2nd, we had a great morning. Last night I sat down with him and we discussed what would make the mornings better. I explained to him what a few of you said about him being too old to be woken, pushed, directed from the time of waking to getting on the bus. I do agree with you. I guess it has become a habit because I have been doing it for so long. So we decided that I would wake up, turn on the lights in the living room, bathroom, hallway and his room when waking him. I think part of the problem might be that we always get ready in the dark for the most part and that might be why he falls back asleep. So today I did just that, it was light in my house as if it were light outside. I think it really helped. The only thing I had to say to him other than 'get up' was, 'you need to walk out the door in 5 minutes'. It worked today.......let's see where it takes us tomorrow and the following days.

Oh yeah, and for those of you that asked about his evening routine, he has a really good one. First off, we do not have caffeine in our house. I do not buy it. He is an outside boy so he plays all evening outside after homework. My son, myself and my mom take an evening walk almost every evening. He goes to bed at about 9:30 and I wake him at about 6:15. Oh, and he drinks a glass of milk before bed most nights. I feel like that is a good routine.

Thank you again for all of your advice. I hope that my request and your responses will help many other mothers out there struggling with their teens getting up in the morning.

Featured Answers

My 14 year old neice was giving her mom a hard time waking up too. So her mom made her bed time earlier. And told her that each morning she gave her a hard time, she would have to go to bed 15 minutes earlier that night. It got to be as early as 8pm, before she started taking more responsibility in the bedtime and wake up routines.
Good luck, mine are young so I am trying to take notes.

1 mom found this helpful

Make him go to bed earlier. Chances are, he has access to tv, video games, and other things late at night in his room. Remove all nighttime distractors and make him go to bed at a certain time. If he gets up without a problem, let him stay up 30 minutes later. If he has trouple getting up, bump up the bedtime by thirty minutes. We're ALL tired in the morning, it's just a power struggle and lack of responsibility that he's not getting up willingly. (I did that too in my teen years). He'll know that not getting up willingly has the consequence of an earlier bedtime and proving he can get up will get him a later bedtime. At twelve, he is growing and needs lots of sleep but he's still a kid who needs rules and limits.

1 mom found this helpful

Well I have a 12 year old daughter who has just rec'd texting and her friends start texting her when they get up so she jumps up because it vibrates across the desk kinda like a alarm. and she can't wait to reply so she texts them back then jumps in the shower and they see whos the fastest and text back when done. The only problem is at dinner I have to take it away until we are done.She mows the yard and things to pay for it its $20 a month ."worth a shot" Make a game out of it .or have his best friends just call and tell him MOVE It man!!1ol. Good Luck!!!write me back and tell me if it works or not.Please???? Thanks from S. in Shawnee P.S. Is he in Desoto or Shawnee distict?

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

I looked through most of your advice, and didn't see this mentioned, so I thought I'd ask - what about sleep apnea? From the bedtime routine you described, it would seem like he gets plenty of sleep, but something may be causing him not to rest well.

I only say this because my younger sister had the same issues as a teen, and drove my mom up a wall. But it turned out that she wasn't breathing normally 45% of the time while asleep, which caused her to be extremely tired in the mornings.

It may be worth checking into...

Best of luck to you guys.

2 moms found this helpful

Try getting him to go to sleep earlier. And if you've tried that and it isn't working, I'd see a sleep specialist. I'm a night owl myself, but I get up when I'm supposed to in the morning. Granted my husband and I both hit our alarm clocks three or four times before actally getting out of bed, but we do get up. He may not be sleeping like he should during the night and you'd never know it. We had that challenge with our oldest in Kindergarten and she had her tonsils and adenoids removed and she quit with the apnea and snoring and started getting great sleep at night. Good luck and God Bless.

2 moms found this helpful

I have the book, "Parenting With Love & Logic" and I was fortunate to actually attend a Discipline Seminar with one of the authors, Jim Faye, and he told an awesome story about being on-time in the mornings. This story happened in his own family...

His wife had a hard time getting their kids in the car for the morning drive to school so after she picked up the kids from school one day, she drove straight to the "Good Will Store". She let the kids stay in the car and she came out with a couple bags of clothes. When they got home she explained that each child has their 'respecive' bag (hanging on the garage door) and if they were NOT in the car seat at the time they are to leave, then she makes them get into the car - ready or not. If they are dressed, fine, if they are not, then she grabbs their Good Will bag and they have to put that on them while driving to school. Since they, like all teenagers, are picky about what they wear, shouldn't have a problem getting to the car on-time. To end the story in the Faye family, None of the kids were late again. Pride is a good motivator. :)

Good Luck & God Bless!

2 moms found this helpful

I have no idea what kind of responses you got last time from the other moms, soooooo - this is mine.

I have been through 3 preteen, then teens and now young adults. No matter how old they get, you are still mom. But being mom doesnt mean that you dont let them grow up. Your son doesnt have to worry about getting up and getting to school on time because you are doing it for him. So he isnt a morning person, that probably wont change. At some point in his life that has to become a reason for wanting to sleep in but not an excuse for sleeping in.

Kids are the funniest creatures, once they see how it benefits them, all of a sudden they get the picture. There is no need to punish him, no need to yell at him, no need to get yourself all flustered. You know he has to go to school, he knows he has to go to school and I am assuming you have to go to work. At his age he is able to stay by himself at home without too much worry.

Before he goes to bed at night tell him that in the morning you are going to wake him up and make sure he is awake and then you are going to treat him like a mature young person and allow him to get ready for school on his own without you. Make sure breakfast is something that wont spoil if he does not make it on time. Then go about your morning as if he is doing what he is supposed to do. Getting on the bus or in the car on time is his job not yours. If he does not make it, go on about your day and go to work, he stays home. I know, I know he will miss a day of school. Exactly, he will have school work to make up when he gets to school. He will have to explain that he over slept, dont cover it up for him. He will have to take responsibility. Now, most parents would say that their kid at this age would love this. That may be true.

There is another side to it though. Going to school is his job. If you dont go to work you dont get the perks that comes from going to work. If he doesnt go to school he doesnt get the perks either. Let him know it is not a punishment it is just the way the world works. Going to school means having free time to do the things that he wants to do, he earns his free time by going to school. It is just like earning a paycheck. If he does not go, he has no free time. That would mean sports, outside time, computer, TV, whatever he does in his free time.

This works, but only if you believe in it enough to make it work. It works if you will really stick to the plan and let him fall, then let him pick himself up.

2 moms found this helpful

I had a similar experience, and was surprised when my pediatrician ordered a sleep study, and was even more surprised to learn my kiddo had sleep apnea. I urge you to check with your son's doctor about a sleep study. Good luck to you.

2 moms found this helpful

I read all the responses, but didn't see one that mentioned what I would do. If he doesn't get up easily in the morning push his bedtime up 15 to 30 minutes, do this each night until he gets the idea that he has to get up without you having to hassle him so much, believe me he won't want to go to bed earlier and will change his habits soon. If he doesn't he's probably one of those people who needs more sleep and you are doing whats best for him anyway. My son hated getting up, but he hated going to bed earlier so he started making himself get up when I woke him and eventually he started getting up on his own to my surprise and delight. Although he does need the daily shower to wake him up.
The sleep study might be a good idea too, I have a friend who's son has restless leg syndrome and didn't ever look rested until he was medicated for this.

2 moms found this helpful

maybe he isn't sleeping well when he is asleep. Have you talked to a doctor about having his sleep patterns tested? If he is going to bed early with 9-10 hours of sleep he should be well rested. If he isn't falling asleep right away then he needs to go to bed earlier and maybe read a book to help him get sleepy. If he is asleep the whole time then he isn't getting a deep sleep and will feel tired. Does he snore loud? may have sleep apnea.

2 moms found this helpful

I took my daughter to school once in her jammies.


Took every bit of strength I had to pick her up out of bed, carry her screaming to the waiting car and buckle her in...I have fybromyalgia...I paid for it with days of pain.

When the school counselor called to say I had to come back and get her because she was in the nurses office in jammies and sockfeet...I said .... this is tough love, sorry.

I did however put a sweatshirt and flipflops in her backpack if she had looked in there.

She's in college now...still remembers it...and almost laughs.

(now that's I've read more)

He needs to go to bed earlier perhaps...that's just somewhere around 9 hours of sleep....you might also try melatonin with dinner just for a short term aide to help get him in bed earlier and asleep sooner.

Puberty is coming....and it's not pretty!

I'm also a single mom that traded no-child-support from my ex, for full custody with no visitation....we haven't had much extras, no vacations, no fancy clothes etc...but we've always been safe.

2 moms found this helpful

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