Stue asks:

My 14yr old daughter has bedtime anxiety every single night. How can I help her not to worry about things?

My 14yr daughter has a ritual that she goes thru every night because if she doesn't she feels worried about forgetting to tell me something. She thinks something will happen to me and she feels she somehow has something to do with what happens or doesn't happen if she doesn't do the same things every night. She also complains about her stomach every night and the minute you mention bedtime, you can see how upset she starts to get. She has not stayed by her dad's since Dec. of last year and will not have sleepovers or go to sleep overs. It is nothing that happened at her dad's.  She also will expect me to go to bed as soon as she does. She says she feels better knowing I am going to bed too. I have yelled at her to "just go to bed", I have tried reasurring her everything is fine, we have been to counseling, tried consequences....I am at my witts end. PLEASE give me some suggestions to try with her.
In Topics: Anxiety, Sleep and rest
> 60 days ago



Wayne Yankus
Sep 1, 2011
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What the Expert Says:

Dear Stue:

Your daughter exhibits serious anxiety about bedtime.  I would suggest starting by having a physical exam with your pediatrician and discussing this issue with her.  Your daughter's obsession with bedtime and manipulation needs evaluation. Best wishes in resolving this issue but now is the time for you and her to come to grips not blows over behavior she is too old to be exhibiting.

Wayne Yankus, MD, FAAP
expert panelist: pediatrics

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