View Full Version : sleep is boring

02-16-10, 07:21 AM
I've had sleep troubles ever since junior high (maybe sooner, but junior high is what i remember). Here's a summary list of the problems I have:

stay up late even when i have to get up early
if I don't have to get up early (like on weekends or, more recently, every day, because I have no job), I tend to go to bed later and later each night until I end up on a sleep schedule something like 5am to 2pm.
severe problems with waking up to alarms and/or on time
really nasty attitude when others try to wake me in the morning
sleeping through multiple alarms or shutting them off
falling asleep during times of boredom like at work, in meetings, lectures, or while reading difficult or dry books
takes a long time to fall asleep

Now that I've been diagnosed with ADD, I've been analyzing my sleep issues in light of the ADD. I've noticed that I don't WANT to sleep. A lot of people speak of having trouble falling asleep. I have that trouble. But more importantly, I seem to be making the conscious decision to stay awake later and later.

I noticed this a couple months ago (before my ADD dx). My doctor prescribed ambien for 30 days because my schedule was so out of whack. The first few days were fine, I started by taking it a half hour before my usual bedtime, and a half hour earlier each consecuitive day. After a few days, I stopped taking them until later and later. I would be playing a video game or watching tv or reading a book and I just decided (against my inner judgement\critical voice) to stay up later because there were things I wanted to do.

So anyway I'm not sure if I really qualify as an insomniac or any other sleep disorder because I'm actively not sleeping. For instance, right now I'm quite tired. Earlier this evening I was almost asleep on the couch, but got up to have a cigarette. Then I started doing stuff on the internet, with the intention of going to bed soon after my wife (about 12:30am). I just kept on messing around on the internet. Probably around 1:45am I took some benadryl to help me get more sleepy. It's now 3:15 and I can feel the effects but it's like I'm ignoring them and trying to stay awake. I'm not sure what my motivation is. Seems like I feel like there's stuff I WANT to do and going to sleep will spoil all the fun.

The really weird thing is that once I'm tired enough, I love to just pass out and fall asleep. I love sleeping so much that it's nearly impossible to rouse me in the morning (or early afternoon :)). It's almost like I've become addicted to the generally pleasurable feeling of getting so tired while I'm doing something that I just pass out. Going and laying in bed and waiting till I feel tired is just too much work. It's boring and I'm impatient. Maybe my brain enjoys stimulation so much that it overrides my love of sleeping, my guilt\embarrassment feelings at waking up so late, and the life consequences of not getting up with the rest of the world.

Anyone else identify with this or am I just totally off my rocker?

02-16-10, 08:04 AM
been thinking about this some more and I can also see these problems as being signs of addictive/compulsive behavior. thoughts?

02-16-10, 08:13 AM
this has sparked a bit of a stream of conciousnes thing for me so bear with me :)

I think I may be on to something with the addictive/compulsive behavior thought. I seem to always be addicted to one thing or another. In early teens it was video/computer games. In my later teens it was socializing and staying out late with friends. In my early 20's it was mostly going to bars and drinking with friends. In my mid-late 20's and on up to today it's been numerous things that I skip between... like internet, video games, some new hobby that I'm researching, or as of late, my ADHD diagnosis and these forums. I don't really have the willpower to stop myself from doing something once it enters my mind. Once it's there, it nags me until I do whatever it is I'm thinking about.

Wondering if maybe this is a bit like the hyperfocus I read about, and whether hyperfocus is really just another way of describing addictive\compulsive behaviors.

And yes, I'm aware that replying to my own thread two times in a half hour pretty much validates a lot of my above theory :)

02-16-10, 01:35 PM
Well I dont think you are off your rocker. I was the same exact way and I am a girl. People could never relate to my urges to stay up so late because to them there was "nothing to do" and to me I find 3 in the morning is very peaceful. With nothing else going on I could concentrate on exactly what I wanted to do. At 3 in the morning I could clean my room without any interuptions. I also played video games and surfed the web. It was my own world where I did whatever I wanted. Id say the latest I stayed up was 2pm the next day. All my friends were going to the beach and I knew I would never wake up so I just stayed up. I'd live on redbull or coffee because I did want to push myself to stay up. And I also know what you mean about the deep satisfying sleep after a night of restlessness. When I tried to sleep early I would just toss and turn and keep thinking of everything I could be doing(maybe OCD) Definately not insomnia though. I could eventually fall asleep when my body was ready. My body could sleep for over 12 hours sometimes. I did mention all this to the doctor which he said how long you sleep is the rest your body "needs"

During school I had alot of trouble getting up. Even if I went to bed at 10 and attempted to wake up at 6 (8 hours),I missed so many days because of it and my doctor would always cover for me. I kept up with my grades because I would take one night and just do all the work. A whole night of peacefulness and I could get all the missed school work completed, but then of course I wouldnt wake up the next morning to hand it in! The teachers HATED me! There was nothing they could do about me missing their classes but still haveing good grades.

Now looking back maybe I had ADD the whole time? Maybe I work better in peace n quiet of my own room rather then a noisey classroom. Maybe inside I was so hyperactive I was able to stay up for longer hours then most? I am not sure.

I do know that... the things I heard about most ADHD medications that have to do with sleep, such as adderal making you very hyper and side effects of insomnia probably are more likely for ppl without ADHD. The medication makes me tired! Litteraly lethargic and sluggish. I am getting use to it, but it definately calms me down!

But as advice, I eventually got a really good job that I was forced to go to bed early n wake up early. I still need about 10 hours though! I will pass out at 10 oclock and wake up at 8. For the desk job I have and the little activity in my life on weekdays that is alot of sleep! My doctor now says its nothing to worry about. But honestly those 2 hours I could accomplish much more. And even though I am "normal" now and get up with the rest of the world. On weekends I try to stay up as late as possible to find peace and have the enjoyment of sleeping in : )

02-16-10, 03:27 PM
Sounds a ton like me! Get out of my head :D

I feel like Johnny #5 from the movie Short Circuit........"NEED INPUT" !!!

Sleeping is boring for me as well. I am trying to go to bed earlier now and seems to help. I am also starting to walk every morning and evening (not before bed) and it seems to be improving my fatigue and motivation.

02-16-10, 03:33 PM
Yeah. I'm just about the same way.

The trick is waking up at the same time every day no matter what. Obviously this can be extremely difficult, but if you manage to do it, it's a great self adjusting mechanism, and you don't have to worry about bed time, since it just takes care of itself..... if one day you stay up late, and you still wake up at the same time as usual, the next night, you'll be so tired you pass out early.

Once you get into a rhythm of waking up at the same time, it becomes easier, but getting there, is really tough.

I've done things like sleeping with curtains open, multiple alarms on the others side of the room, sleep journals, incredibly loud radio alarm, etc.

Reading in bed before going to sleep helps, since it gets me into bed if it's something I want to read, and usually I pass out pretty fast, but sometimes I just read all night.

Anyway, pick a time to wake up and try to get as close as possible every day, and don't worry about anything else (like bedtime).

06-24-10, 03:05 AM
I'm also like that... things are always 100000x more interesting in the night, when I should be sleeping. (Like right now) I think it's a bad habit, and you should simply regulate yourself.

06-24-10, 05:41 AM
i have been like this for so many years i didn't think i could ever change. to my surprise, the add treatment (strattera in my case) made wonders in this aspect. for the first time in my life i manage to go to sleep around 11 pm every night, for nights in a row. i don't look like a zombie anymore, yay :D

i don't think it's something you can regulate yourself. before starting the treatment even if i would go to bed at 11, even if i would be yawning for hours before, i would twist and turn for like an hour or more, building frustration that i don't feel asleep. when i would be already bursting out with rage i would get up, go have a cigarette to calm me down...than realize i'm even more awake and switch the computer back on. another gaming night.

same as with other stuff, sleep is also not susceptible to "just do it". i need something to help me do it, because it's against the settings of my brain.

06-24-10, 11:55 AM
If you get anxious because you don't fall asleep, you won't sleep at all, believe me. You need to regulate yourself and stay calm, don't worry, etc.

06-26-10, 04:31 AM
Like the great Carpenter film says, "They live, we sleep."

Obey, marry and reproduce, no independent thought, consume, conform, submit,STAY ASLEEP, buy, watch t.v., no imagination, do no question authority...

"This is your God." - U.S. Currency

06-26-10, 09:34 AM
Sleep may be boring but it is also essential to our health and well being. Iím what some call a night owl, always have been. I think everyone has a preferred time of day - some people love mornings and some people prefer evenings. Personally I think worrying and being over concerned about how much sleep we are getting just makes matters worse. The truth is teenagers need more sleep, something to do with growing and development. But as we get older we need less and less sleep. Most people get by on 8 to 10 hours, older people 5 to 6 hours. This new thing called a power nap is very useful. You set your alarm to go off in an hour and for that hour you do absolutely nothing and if you drop off the alarm will wake you. Takes a bit of getting used to but once you are itís amazingly effective. Some of you students struggling with exams should try it.

08-12-10, 12:22 AM
Yep, the original post describes me to a T. I'll stay up late at night doing entirely aimless things on the internet (I mean it...I mean, how many people can truthfully say they've read the entire wikipedia article on onions?). The title is very apt, sleep was always just too boring for me to do, even things as menial as I described would be better. However, I've taken to waking up relatively early every day now (7 during university, 9 during the summer) which has helped tremendously. If my brain decides to be a bum and not shut down one night, I'll still wake up at the same time so my sleep cycle doesn't become a train wreck because of it.

Anyways, off to read the wiki article on chupacabras!

08-12-10, 01:09 AM
I feel like Johnny #5 from the movie Short Circuit........"NEED INPUT" !!!

I can't believe anyone besides me would remember that!

I relate to Dr. Russell Barkley's comment that "going to sleep is lying around waiting for nothing to happen!"