I am tired. I would fall asleep if I went to bed. But I can’t get myself to actually want to go to bed. Even though I know I should. Even though I know, from experience, that being up this late is going to make tomorrow terrible. And I’m not doing anything urgent or particularly engrossing. I just think about going to bed and think a thought that basically means “fuck that.” No reason given.
What is this? It’s a kind of sleeplessness. But it’s not insomnia. Is it? Is there a word for it?
Lately, I’ve come to think of it as simply procrastinating the drudgery of going to bed. Okay, it’s 11:30 and I’m engrossed in some fun activity…whaddyoumean, I have to stop doing that and make my lunch for tomorrow, clean the litterbox, feed the cats, change into PJs, pick out tomorrow’s clothes, wash my face, brush my teeth, clean my contacts, and get in bed??
The real mystery is why every single goddamn day, I tell myself, “Tonight, you’re going to get all that done first and then go do what you want, so that you can actually get 8 hours of sleep tonight for the first time in months,” and then don’t do that.
I often find myself too tired to go to bed, reading forums like this, or playing internet chess (and blundering like crazy).
I’m unable to roll out of my local minimum to reach the lowest energy state.
I wouldn’t call what the OP describes as insomnia. I don’t know if there is a term for it, but I would probably relate it to anxiety. Since you could fall asleep and sleep soundly if you just laid down and went to bed, it wouldn’t be insomnia.
Are you anxious about things that are coming tomorrow? Maybe going to bed means those things will come more quickly, so by not going to sleep you are delaying the arrival of the next day.
I have had this problem, sometimes I still do. My advice is to sit on the side of your bed, turn off the light on the nightstand, climb in bed, and pull up the covers. The main thing is not to let yourself know that you are planning on doing that. By the time your head hits the pillow, you’ll be asking yourself, “When did I decide to do that?”
I think it’s insomnia. I have it. Even if I go to bed, then I don’t sleep. I know I should, but I don’t. And, as you say, there’s a part of me that wants to just stay up. I’m not sure what it is. The house is quiet, everyone is asleep. I think it’s the only “me” time I get. Doesn’t mean it’s healthy though. I’m averaging about 4 hours of sleep during the week. Then I sleep all day on Saturday.
I don’t think it’s necessarily related to those ‘pre-bed’ rituals because, even if I’ve already done them, I still often find myself putting off going to bed. I can barely keep my eyes open at times, and yet here I sit, faffing about on the computer.
I don’t think it has a name. Heck, I never even knew it was a ‘thing’ until this thread.
This sounds right. I do the same thing. By staying awake, you still have time to watch tv, screw around on the Internet, whatever you want. Going to sleep, you are instantly time-warped to the next morning, with work and commute and other stuff going on. Staying awake puts that off a little longer.