I seem to have the opposite problem to what everyone else has.

My kid sleeps well. He stays in bed well.. too well. In the morning he can hear activity and everyone talking yet he will not get out of bed himself until he hears his name called. Instead he will stay rooted to his bed and moan. If he needs the toilet he will start shouting "I need a wee" yet will not get up without being called.

We keep reassuring him that it is fine to get out of bed. I understand why he may not want to get out bed if it is dark or quiet but in the mornings when there is light and activity it would be nice for him to be a bit emboldened and come and say hello.

Note: when we call him he gets out of bed, opens the door himself and comes and find us. Why doesn't he do it without the call?

Has anyone come across this? Any ideas?

  • My son did this too. I can't remember what age he started getting up by himself but I think it was about 4 or 5. I quite liked it as it meant he wasn't up and getting into trouble while I snoozed blissfully on!
    – Vicky
    Commented Sep 2, 2013 at 8:29
  • My son STILL does this and he'll be 6 in February--and I have to go physically remove him from his bed almost every morning. If he's getting up when you call him on his own without too much of a fight then it's probably nothing to be overly concerned about.
    – Meg Coates
    Commented Sep 5, 2013 at 13:28

3 Answers 3


Despite joking, @monsto has a point - children are children, and their motivation may be very strange to us...

But I would guess that your child is staying in bed because he thinks that is what you want him to do. Perhaps he has over-interpreted instructions that he should go to bed, or does he have a sibling who was told off for getting up early, or perhaps he hurt himself once when he got up without being told to.

it could be any one of a number of things. The important point is to now focus on positive reinforcement if you want him to get up - but be aware that you may regret this decision. Many parents wish their children would stay in bed until called :-)

Have a conversation with him to discuss when would be good to get up and when wouldn't. Encourage him to go to the bathroom by himself when he needs to. Be very positive when he does the right thing.

But above all, don't worry about it - these sort of phases pass.


When we call him he gets out of bed, opens the door himself and comes and find us. Why doesn't he do it without the call?

Has anyone come across this? Any ideas?

Yes. The answer is that your child is 3.

Lets reinforce this a bit. Here, your mileage may vary because I'm going by my memory of my own kids and NOT some established parameter for a 'normal' child (newsflash: it doesn't exist). Here's some of the things he can probably do:

  • count to 20
  • spread jelly on bread.
  • change the channel on the remote (maybe even to a specific channel)
  • get you a coke from the cabinet
  • beat the hell out of the dog (petting too hard)

Here's things he probably CAN'T do:

  • spell his name
  • spread peanut butter without ripping the bread.
  • find espn
  • get you a coke from the fridge (can't open it gracefully)
  • walk the dog

Duh. Right? I mean we know this. But sometimes we forget they're 3. I have to look at my kids (8 - 22) and remind myself that my 8 yo shouldn't be running around the neighborhood at 10pm.

It will come in time. Just keep hollering at him, and work on convincing him, day after day, that he's capable of getting up and coming to you on his own. Next thing you know you'll be happily making jello shots and "OH LOOK AT THE BIG BOY GETTIN OUT OF BED. Would you like some jello?"



Agree with answers here.

Only posting this because I just went through same thing. My 3 year old (almost 4 now) would just stay there until you went to get him, even on Saturdays if I got up and turned on cartoons in the living room.

But I decided not to worry too much about it, and then a few weeks ago he just started getting up on his own because I guess he was ready to.

Now he comes downstairs to wake us up if WE try to sleep in.

So enjoy it while you can, man. Enjoy it while you can.

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