This week another sleep-related health story hit the headlines. These stories are often accompanied by ‘how to get a good night’s sleep’ guides, which include helpful tips like ‘turn off your phone’ and ‘make sure your bedroom is a calm and peaceful environment’.

And the running press have picked up on this too with articles like ‘Sleep well, run better’ and ‘Why getting enough sleep is crucial for runners’.

But all too often I read these and find myself shouting (quietly, in my head): “I’m guessing you don’t have (very bad word) children then!”

Last night my sleep was stolen by the water wolves. These are creatures that live in the water and try and reach out to try and scratch you. Despite me patiently explaining to my four year old at 2.30am that they don’t exist and there is no water in her bedroom for them to hide in, it still took two attempts and half an hour before she settled down enough for me to leave her. In the meantime she’d woken her big sister up…

And then there are the early mornings. If I’m in bed at 7am at the weekend that’s a result. Most mornings the eldest is awake around 6am…

And so while I appreciate sleep is a very important part of health and wellbeing, please, please stop telling me and all the other parents out there how to get a good night’s sleep. We don’t need your advice; we’re knackered enough to sleep anywhere. Or at least add a health warning on your articles that states ‘not suitable for parents’.


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