How to Talk Your Parents Into Allowing a Later Bedtime
I am a mom. And, I know what would convince me to say yes to a later bedtime. So you are getting insider information here.
- Roll your eyes
- Stomp your feet
- Interrupt them when they are in the middle of something else.
- Be polite and responsible for at least a couple days in preparation. If they ask you to do something, do it the first time and do it correctly with maximum effort. If you are on your best behavior they will be much more likely to say yes to your request.
- Do your chores with a good attitude. Be happy and don't complain!
- Be energetic when you wake up. Your parents are not going to let you stay up later if they already have a hard time getting you up in the morning.
- Do some extra work around the house. Is mom bringing in the groceries? Volunteer to help her carry them in before she even asks.
- Are all of your responsibilities done? Make sure everything you need to do including homework and chores are done before you ask.
- Make a chart, graph, or something else that takes effort. If you have a visual aid it shows how much thought and effort you put into it.
- Say please.
- Make your argument. Tell them, nicely, why you think you should be able to stay up later. Will staying up later allow you more time to do your homework, clean your room, or recharge mentally for the next day?
- Tell them why it would be to their advantage to let you stay up later. Will you be able to help out around the house more if you stay up later? This will help them out. If you can find a way to show your parents that the change will benefit them it will help.
- Negotiate. Give them something they want. For instance, you could offer to walk the dog every day or put the dishes in the dishwasher.
- If they tell you no the first time wait a couple months and then ask again. Sometimes it takes some times for parents to think things through. Often the second or third time you ask they will have already been thinking about it because you mentioned it before. They may be more willing to say yes the second or the third time. Just make sure you space these requests out and follow all the steps each time.
- Do not say um, like, or I mean during the conversation. It will make you sound less confident and more unsure.
- Do mirror the way your mom is standing or how she is holding her hands or the tilt of your head. This mimicking created empathy.
- Find a way to create touch. Touch your mom's arm, shoulder, or give her a hug. She will appreciate this gesture and increase your bond during the conversation.
Here is something you could say to your parents. Of course, you will want to tweak it to meet your situation. A good time to ask would be later on a weekday when bedtime is approaching. You could say:
You: Mom, could I talk to you for a second?
Mom: Of course, honey.
You: I think it would be great if I had more time to study, don't you?
You: I've been thinking about this a lot lately and I think it would be really helpful if I could stay up a half hour later on weekdays. I could really use that time to finish studying and get in some down time before school the next day. And, all of my friends are able to stay up until at least that time. Don't you think that's a good idea?
Mom: Let me and your Dad talk about it and we'll get back with you.
Don't expect to get a yes the first time. Parents might have to think about it or you may need to make a couple arguments. Take your time and spread them out. Make sure you are on your best behavior in between. You should do your chores without being asked and get up on time without a lot of drama. Do not berate your parents with an onslaught of requests. If you make a request to have a later bedtime and they say no, wait a couple months and then ask again. With each time you ask, your chance of getting a yes response increases because they will have time to think about it and let your arguments sink in.
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