I’m the first to admit there are a million ways to parent and a million opinions about bed times, so this isn’t a tip for everyone.  However, if you have decided that you want to put your kids to bed and walk away, but are having trouble actually doing so, here’s the geek trick that worked for me:

Start a game night.  Invite some friends over to play games – preferably the kind you need to be present for at least 98% of the time.  Tell them to come about 10-15 minutes after you want to leave your kid’s room.  This way when it’s time for you to exit the room, you’ll have the double incentives of knowing people are waiting for you and wanting to play the game with them :D.

I discovered this by accident because I used to put my son to bed by sitting in his room until he fell asleep.  It wasn’t that bad for me because I could read a book on my phone or Kindle while I was waiting.  However, when we started having game nights more regularly I started really wanting to be out in the action – especially on those nights when he just would not fall asleep.  Spurred by this incentive, I began weaning myself from his room at bedtime.  Now I put him in bed, say goodnight, and am free to go play or do whatever else I want . . . until he or one of his sisters get up or start crying, of course :P.  Again, I’m not saying everyone has to do this – but it’s worked for us and my husband and I have really enjoyed getting some time to game with each other and/or friends.

Do you have a geeky parenting tip to share?  We’d love to have you share it in the comments.