How To Get Your Child To Stop Playing and Come to Bed

A conversation guide

Adelina Vasile


Photo by Vigneshwar Rajkumar on Unsplash

Hey, Parent!

This conversation guide will make you deal with less resistance at bedtime. I wrote it to help you engage with your child’s world, validate their feelings, and gently guide them to bed using positive reinforcements. I also included a subtle lesson all parents want to teach their kiddos — compromising.

It’s meant as a guide, not as a script. So, make sure to look for the lines that explain the Psychology, Purpose & Intended effect of each phrase the parent says.

Once you understand these three, you’ll be able to adapt your dialogues as per your child’s preferences and level of understanding.


There are several powerful reasons why your child often struggles with the transition to bedtime.

👉Biologically, their internal circadian rhythms, which govern sleep-wake cycles, are still maturing, making them more sensitive to their surroundings.

👉As they’re deeply immersed in a world of play and discovery, essential for their growth and learning, it’s not easy for them to just “switch off” from these captivating activities.

👉With its myriad electronic screens and constant stimuli, our modern world can be especially overstimulating, pushing back their natural drowsiness.

👉Feelings of separation anxiety or the fear of missing out on something can further complicate bedtime.

But let’s move on to the psychology of how to get your child to stop playing and come to bed.

To see the full dialogue without any explanations, scroll down toward the bottom. 👇

Get your child to stop playing and come to bed

Parent: Hey sweetie, what are you playing with?

  • Psychology: Open with a gentle, affectionate tone and show genuine interest in your child’s activity. This way, you acknowledge their feelings and autonomy.
  • Purpose: To engage with your child at their level and build rapport.
  • Intended effect: To make your child feel valued and create positive interaction.



Adelina Vasile

Mother, educator, journalist, copywriter. I write about the things I need to learn myself.