Fresher Air

More on the Not a Toddler In a Teenage Body Topic

This was not a long bike ride due to imminent thunder storming of the weather sort

When you hear Jimi Hendrix from Charlie's room at 11pm, you know it could be a 4am-er. I've hesitated to give him too much melatonin, out of concern that he would have a hard time waking up and getting to school. The nurse at the neurologist told us that melatonin helps you fall asleep, but doesn't keep you asleep.

We've been giving Charlie the same dose of melatonin since he was about 9 or 10 and he clearly has grown. I gave him some time around 11pm last night and at about a quarter to 1am his eyes were drooping while he was watching something on his iPad and he went to sleep. And, he just got on the bus with zero drama.

A friend's teenage son had told us that he takes melatonin so he doesn't stay up all night playing video games.

Despite Charlie still watching plenty of preschooler fare and his liking for Barney, Disney and (of late) a round or two of 'The Chipmunk Song,' he is a teenager with habits more like my 'um, Dr. Chew, stayed up till 5 playing video games (but it's such a great game!)' students. He chafes -- recoils -- at cutesifying treatment as much as I did when I was his age.

He also handles things like waiting an hour due to a thunderstorm for a bike ride, going out for 10 minutes and turning back due to thunder, going out for a nice evening ride, not going for a requested walk at 9.30pm because it really was dark and walks don't necessarily settle him -- handled it all well.


This was a proper 6 miler some hours later




This is an issue we are grappling even now, when Joey is 10. Like any child, his emotional, social, and intellectual (and even physical) development is uneven. How do you handle a child who still watches Little Bear and wants to greet his teachers with a big hug, while he also wants to play Mario Bros to 4am, and meanwhile does high school level math? Not a big deal with me- he is who he is. But teachers in school and folks on the street are baffled.


How did Charlie handle your parents leaving? I'm assuming he did pretty well, as you didn't mention it as one of Wednesday's challenges.

I think I'm going to try melatonin on my 15-year-old boy. I've been having a dreadful time for the past year trying to get him to go to sleep at a reasonable hour. This is certainly a universal teenage-boy issue!

Kristina Chew

@Monica, I guess we all slept better before video games....

Kristina Chew

@Joeymom, I think a lot of these adolescent stuff started when Charlie was 10!

By 11 he seemed to be continually in a growth spurt and we saw other physical signs of puberty.

I had read that boys like ours sometimes enter puberty early and that was the case for Charlie. I often feel like it's been one hormonal-coaster since!

Charlie likes to leave his iPad on inside while we're on the lawn waiting for the bus; sometimes it's the Kinks, sometimes it's the dulcet tones of 'a dream is a wish your heart makes'....

The comments to this entry are closed.