Advertising
Advertising

7 Signs Your Adult Children Truly Are Adults

7 Signs Your Adult Children Truly Are Adults

Thanksgiving is fast approaching. If you’re the matriarch of the family, chances are you’re responsible for hosting a large feast for the whole family. The question is: Are you flying solo slaving in the kitchen or are your adult kids pitching in to help alleviate the burden? The answer to that question will indicate whether your adult children are in fact adults. Here are some other indicators:

1. Your kids ask how YOU are doing from time to time

The parent-child relationship is largely one-sided for the first 18 years of a child’s life. But by the time they fly the coop from high school or maybe even college, they start to realize their parents are people with needs, too. So they ask how you’re doing and if there’s anything they can do for you. They ask about your interests, your hobbies, your dreams. You are no longer an extension of their need.

2. You are no longer a walking ATM

The days of being asked, “Hey Mom, got a twenty?” are OVER. By this time, junior has a job and learning to pay for rent, car payments and (gasp) even his own toilet paper! I remember the time I moved into my first studio apartment. I was sitting on the john and thought, “Oh man, I’ve got to buy EVERYTHING around here!” Yup. In the growing up years, your parents become smarter by the day.

Advertising

3. The family cell phone plan is just for Mom and Dad

Don’t get me started on how many twenty-somethings are still mooching off their parents and crying, “It doesn’t cost THAT much to keep me on your family plan, can’t you do me a solid and help me out a little? I promise to call you every week!” When you start charging them for their portion of the plan or boot them off the family plan entirely, they realize that unlimited texting comes at a cost!

4. You go out for dinner on your birthday… and your kids foot the bill

In days past, when the family’s gone out to dinner, it’s typical for the parents to pick up the tab. And that’s all well and good… but the tables should turn when your kids land decent jobs and you go out for your special day. When the bill comes, they should offer to treat you to a nice meal after all you’ve done for them.

5. Your kids stop blaming you for their poor choices

The true mark of maturity is realizing you alone are responsible for your mental, emotional and financial health. Your parents (hopefully) did what they could, albeit imperfectly, as they raised you. Maybe some collateral damage was incurred along the way and as you rehash how much your parents screwed you over as a kid, you feel they owe you an apology for the decisions you’re making today. That’s wrong. Once you hit 21, you’re in the driver’s seat. Believe it, own it and move on.

6. Holiday traditions change

When your kids have kids of their own, they may insist on creating some unique traditions within their little families… and it may not include you. That’s okay. Give them Christmas morning with their kids and negotiate a lunch or dinner with you. You had 18 years to dictate holiday traditions with your little ones and now as they launch families of their own, it’s time to support their wishes… while still keeping room in their hearts for you.

7. Instead of trying to fix you, your kids honor you

It baffles my mind when I see kids make their parents’ health, hobbies and marriage their business. It’s totally not. Maybe your parents are perfectly content watching FOX News all day and shouting at the television. To you it might be a complete waste of brain space but if your parents are happy, let them be! A mature adult realizes their parents did their job raising you and it’s not your job to now raise them.

Featured photo credit: Gabriela Pinto, Flickr, Creative Commons, June 6, 2011 via creativecommons.org

Advertising

Advertising

More by this author

7 Signs Your Adult Children Truly Are Adults People Who Blend Storytelling In Their Life Live More Awesome Five Things Every Adoptive Mom Needs to Know 7 Sweet Moments Only Long Distance Couples Can Experience Morning Sickness Remedies Check out These 5 Morning Sickness Remedies

Trending in Parenting

1 Bedtimes For Kids At Different Ages (Your Go-To Guide) 2 20 Energizing Brain Breaks For Kids 3 35 Easy And Healthy Dinner Ideas For Kids 4 50 Single Mom Quotes On Staying Strong And Loving 5 How Much Screen Time Should Kids Have And Why?

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Published on May 21, 2021

Bedtimes For Kids At Different Ages (Your Go-To Guide)

Bedtimes For Kids At Different Ages (Your Go-To Guide)

Bedtimes for kids might be one of the most challenging parts of the day. Parents are tired and ready to relax, while kids of all ages seem to find extra energy and want nothing to do with sleep. One more story, one more trip to the bathroom, and one more question quickly make for a late-night, and no one gets the rest they need.

If this happens often, you might start wondering if you and your child are getting the proper amount of sleep and how to make bedtime easier. Why is it so crucial for your child to get enough sleep? What does sleep deprivation look like? How do you improve bedtimes for kids?

How Sleep Impacts Your Child’s Health

Whether young or old, sleep is a vital part of staying healthy. There are many benefits to getting the right amount of sleep while not getting enough can have negative consequences. How does it impact your child?[1]

  • Brain Function – Sleep is linked to certain brain functions such as concentration, productivity, and cognition. These all impact a child’s behavior and academic success.
  • Weight – Sleep patterns affect the hormones responsible for appetite. A lack of sleep interferes with the ability to regulate food intake, making overeating more likely.
  • Physical Performance – Sleep impacts a person’s physical abilities. Proper rest means better performance, concentration, energy, mental clarity, and faster speed.
  • Physical Health – There are many ways sleep promotes health. Sleep heals the body but also helps prevent disease and health issues. Getting proper rest will regulate blood pressure, help prevent heart disease, reduce chances of sleep apnea, reduce inflammation, boost immune system, and lower risk of weight gain.
  • Improve Mental Health – A lack of sleep has a negative impact on mood and social and emotional intelligence. A child not getting proper sleep is more likely to experience depression, lack empathy and be unaware of other people’s emotions and reactions.

Sleep, Risky Behavior, and Teens

Studies found that teens were more likely to engage in risky behavior when they are sleep-deprived. They’ll have problems regulating their mood, making them more short-tempered, aggressive, and impulsive. Their inability to self-regulate can even look like the symptoms of ADHD.[2]

Sleep deprivation becomes hazardous when teens are driving. The impulsiveness and risk-taking, along with exhaustion, put them at a higher risk for accidents. In fact, driving tired is comparable to driving with a blood alcohol content of .08.[3]

Advertising

You can see why sleep is so essential to everyone’s health, but how much is needed? What do pediatricians recommend? Is it the same for all ages?

Sleep Recommendations From Pediatricians

Sleep requirements vary by age. It won’t be the same for every individual. Some people find that they need more sleep than others.

Here is a basic guideline of what pediatricians now recommend:[4]

  • Ages 4-12 months: 12-16 hours (including naps)
  • Ages 1-2 years: 11-14 hours (including naps)
  • Ages 3-5 years: 10-13 hours (including naps)
  • Age 6-12 years: 9-12 hours
  • Age 13-18 years: 8-10 hours

Increase the amount of sleep if your child isn’t thriving on the recommended amount.

Signs Your Child Isn’t Getting Enough Sleep

There are ways to tell if your child is getting adequate sleep beyond the usual grumpiness. Here are specific things to watch out for:[5]

Advertising

  • Excessive sleepiness during the day
  • Difficulty waking up on time
  • Hyperactivity
  • Depression
  • Inattention
  • Mood swings
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Irritability
  • Impatience
  • Impulse control

As you can see, prolonged lack of sleep can cause relational problems and hinder your child’s ability to do well in school. What can you do if you realize your child is not getting enough sleep? How can you improve bedtimes for your kids?

How to Set Up a Bedtime Routine

Sleep hygiene or a bedtime schedule will help your child fall asleep faster. It will also improve the quality of sleep. You will need to adjust to what works for your family, but the following suggestions can help everyone have a more pleasant bedtime.

For Babies

Most people think they have to let their baby “cry it out” at bedtime. However, there are ways you can teach a baby to sleep without tears, making the experience more pleasant for everyone. In fact, studies show the faded bedtime method—or gentle sleep training—is just as effective as leaving a baby to cry but without the stress.[6] What is gentle sleep training?

Gentle Sleep Training

This method eases babies and young children into falling asleep on their own. There are two ways to do this:

1. Positive Routines With Faded Bedtime

Kids learn to fall asleep easily by using comforting, quiet, and predictable rituals, up to twenty minutes long. The key is to choose a bedtime that’s not too early. A child that isn’t tired will only fight sleep.

Advertising

Start the process when your baby or child is sleepy, even if it’s later than you’d prefer. You’ll notice a pattern and quickly discover the time they naturally start winding down. Make this their bedtime for now. They will learn to associate sleep with the routine, and you’ll be able to start fifteen to twenty minutes earlier to slowly adjust their schedule.

2. Sleep With Parental Presence

With this method, you lie down with your baby or child until they fall asleep. Over time, you pay less attention to your child, gradually sitting up, then sitting in a chair. Eventually, your child will be able to sleep without you. A study showed that using this method helped infants sleep longer and wake up less.[7]

Both of these ways take time but are effective and less traumatic than leaving an infant or young child to cry.

More Tips to Help Your Baby Sleep Better

You want to build a routine, but how? What are practical things you can do to help your baby get ready for bed?

Here are tips for a soothing and calm bedtime:[8]

Advertising

  • Help set their “internal clock” by exposing them to natural daylight, daytime activities, and the calmness of evening.
  • Block blue light exposure.
  • Make the hour up to bedtime calm, peaceful, and pleasant.
  • Learn how to keep stress minimal for you and your baby.
  • Don’t force sleep. It will increase anxiety and make rest more difficult.
  • Avoid late afternoon naps
  • Prolong the time between nap and bedtime.
  • Feed baby right before bed.
  • Avoid intervening too soon if the baby starts to wake up. Give your child a chance to fall back asleep without your help.

For Elementary-Aged Children

It’s easier to follow a routine if you start young, but it’s never too late to begin. The good news is it only takes a few nights to notice an improvement in your child’s sleep.

These ideas will help you set up a schedule that will encourage your child to fall asleep easier, faster, and for a more extended period.[9]

  • Offer them a nutritious snack.
  • Bathe them.
  • Brush their teeth and go to the bathroom.
  • Read them a story.
  • Sing them a song.
  • Cuddle or massage them.
  • Talk about the day.

For best results, choose a handful of activities and do them in the same order each night. Dim the lights and keep activity minimal to help everyone slow down.

For Teens

They might fight the idea of getting more sleep, but teens will benefit from a routine, too. They’re usually capable of overseeing their bedtime, but a little structure and oversight can help them get the sleep they need. By implementing the following tips, your teen can get better rest.[10]

  • Avoid caffeine in the evening.
  • Limit screen time.
  • Avoid late-night binging.
  • Exercise, ideally sixty minutes a day.
  • Keep the bedroom dark, cool, and quiet.
  • Talk through problems.

Quality Sleep for a Healthy Life

Bedtimes for kids can be an enjoyable part of the day with proper sleep hygiene in place. Not only can it be quality time with your child, but it can also set them on the road to good health and high performance. By implementing these tips, you can ensure proper rest for the whole family and better bedtimes for kids.

Advertising

Featured photo credit: Igordoon Primus via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Medical News Today: Why Sleep Is Essential For Health
[2] Child Mind Institute: Teens And Sleep: The Cost Of Sleep Deprivation
[3] Depart of Health: Drowsy Driving Prevention, Teens Ages 16 To 19
[4] AAP publications: AAP Endorses New Recommendations On Sleep Times
[5] Journal of Excellence in Nursing Leadership: Sleep Deprivation In Children A Growing Public Health Concern
[6] Parenting Science: Gentle Infant Sleep Training
[7] BetterHealth: Solutions to sleep concerns (11) – babies 6 to 12 months
[8] Parenting Science: 15 Evidence-Based Baby Sleep Tips
[9] Sleep Foundation: Bedtime Routines For Children
[10] NHS: Sleep Tips For Teenagers

Read Next