Parents Reveal the Truly Bizarre Tricks They've Used to Get Their Kids to Sleep

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We've all been there. It's an hour after you started your LO's bedtime routine and you cannot get them to fall asleep. You've tried reading them a bedtime story, tried the warm milk -- heck, you've even tried putting them in the car and driving them around, which used to work when they were babies. But nothing will get these kids to go to sleep! Well, parents everywhere feel your pain. The companies behind two popular meditation apps recently conducted a survey of the weirdest ways parents have gotten their kids to sleep, and the answers will make you LOL.

  • The surveyed was conducted by the makers of meditation apps Calm and Moshi Twilight Sleep Stories.

    The two companies, which are partnering to launch a sleep aid for kids, asked 2,205 British and American parents to share the absolute strangest sleep tricks that have worked on their kids -- and they did not disappoint. Answers ranged from normal fare like running a vacuum cleaner all the way to "out there" prospects like explaining the intricacies of Chinese infrastructure (seriously!). Thirteen of the craziest stories were selected to go head-to-head in competition for the #1 craziest thing a parent has done to get a child to sleep. And some of the responses were downright hilarious...

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  • 1. Having the child watch a video of a crossword puzzle tournament.


    What's a four-letter word for a reflex that happens when folks are tired or bored out of their minds? Oh yeah, YAWN.

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  • 2. Laying the child on the parent's chest while slowly spinning in a circle.


    Points if a parent can do this and not get sick. It's hard enough having one person who spits up in the house.

  • 3. Inventing an imaginary figure like "The 8 o'clock Man," who tries to catch children awake after 8 p.m.


    Exactly how is this helping anyone sleep? That sounds terrifying.

  • 4. Getting the child to listen to an hour-long recording of people yawning


    Well, they do say that one should lead by example. But the most shocking thing about this whole thing is that there's actually a one-hour recording of people yawning.

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  • 5. Singing/humming the British national anthem to the child


    No shade to Thomas Arne, who wrote the British National Anthem, but his song is not keeping anyone awake. 

  • 6. Having the child listen to a recording of a chapter from an 18th century Scottish economics book, read by a really boring teacher


    Turns out that foreign accents don't always make things better. This audio recording is rated "zzzzzzzzzzzz."

  • 7. Putting a ticking clock under the child's pillow to mimic the mother's heartbeat.


    Does a clock really sound like a heartbeat? Apparently it does to that kid, and that's all that matters.

    Getting kids to sleep is rough. A survey earlier this fall showed the average parent spends 140 hours a year putting the kids to bed. That's equal to about 18 days, just FYI. And, as these sleep strategies prove, parents in the trenches will do almost anything to get those little ones to sleep. Honestly, we don't blame them. We might even steal some of these ideas.

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