Daddy Diaries: 20 Ways Sleep Deprived Dads Can Sneak In A Nap

There are three different types of “tired” in the world. There’s the sleepless feeling someone has when they roll out of bed after staying up past midnight to catch the last quarter of the Super Bowl. This can easily be washed away with a warm cup of coffee and the thought of co-workers paying them the money they won from betting on the game.

Then there's the "Thursday night happy hour" that quickly became last call type tiredness. Waking up a little dizzy but knowing that a car nap during lunch and an early sneak out of work are possible makes the exhausted feeling disappear.  After all, it is Friday!

And then there is daddy tired. This is a whole new level of fatigue. It easily puts the other two to shame. And my goodness, trying to keep one's eyes open when they just want to shut is worse than finding out the ice cream machine at McDonald's has broken down again.  

It seems like the moms have it all figured out; as if they are somehow more prepared to be a parent than the rest of the dads out there. Look no further dads because the key to success is right here. These sneaky tricks will not only help get some more shut-eye, but they will also help in getting a leg up in the parenting world.

20 Don’t Wake Daddy


Welcome to the game that will change your life. This game starts off with a little extra work but will result in a payday for you. Let your kids know you are playing a game called, “don’t wake daddy.” Pretend to sleep while they are playing and if they get a bit loud, jump up and wake up! They will laugh, and want to play again.

Do it a few times, and each time, wait just a bit longer. Soon, you will be having to set your phone alarm so you can get a quick 10-minute snooze in! Shhhh, Don’t wake daddy!

19 Driveway Nap

Mom’s don’t just go to Target to shop, I mean, maybe they do, but they also are experts at the car trick. Kids love to fall asleep in the car. Next time your baby is snoring in the back seat, don’t wake him or her up trying to carry them into the house. Pull on over and shut your eyes too. Have no fear, they are strapped in the car seat, so you will hear them if they wake up!

Next time you need a cat nap, just tell your wife you are taking the kids to Home Depot! Oh, and a little advice, be sure to pick a soothing radio station for an even better shut-eye!

18 In The Office

Remember the kids in High School that had so much time on their hands in Geography class they learned to sleep with their eyes open? I am now jealous of them and wish I watched countless hours of Youtube videos to master this art.

If you can do this, oh how we all envy you. If not, start watching Youtube now! Only kidding! Office naps are totally acceptable, especially when everyone in the office knows you have a newborn at home keeping you up. Hopefully, you have nice co-workers who will wake you up before the boss gets to your desk!

17 Bathroom Break

Most men are known for spending lots of time on the potty. Right? No shame in the game Sir! Embrace this stereotype and start putting it to good use. Next time you need to catch a few Z’s, just let your wife know you have to go to the bathroom.

Lock the door, lay in the tub, and close those eyes. You will be in peace and quiet because it seems normal for dads to be in the bathroom for an obnoxious amount of time, so no one will knock! Oh, and towels make for great pillows if you want to get a little fancy!

16 During Your Errand Time


This trick can seem a bit sneaky, so you better watch your back before you earn diaper duty for a month. Mom always seems to be running errands, and usually to fun places. So next time mommy says she is going out to grab groceries and run to the mall, ask the kids if they want to go with! Maybe hint that it would be extra fun to look at the new toy section. They will jump all over that idea. And just like magic, you are home alone and ready to nap. Now, just be prepared to change blowouts and probably buy your wife flowers if she catches on to your game.

15 The Family Gathering

Have you ever noticed when family comes over for dinner, your little baby is the center of attention? People are passing that little one around and just googly-eyed over his or her beauty. No one seems to notice you or the five pounds you recently lost, and you will soon seem to love that! If you slip away for a quick 15 minutes, no one would know!

Plus you have your trusting family downstairs giving your child so much attention. Go upstairs, a hideaway for a few minutes, and rest up! Trust me, no one will know you are gone.

14 Movie Time

Yes, I know, screen time is limited to one hour a week. Well, dad, you are going to have to break the rules if you want to sleep a bit. Kids love movies, especially Frozen! Pop on Netflix, get all snuggled up on the couch, and be prepared for the best power nap of your life. Turn the lights off, cozy on up, and hit play!

Don’t worry, when the movie ends your child will be screaming whatever theme song comes on and it will be stuck in your head for the rest of the week. You’ll wake up just in time.

13 Fortnight

If playing the video game Fortnite was a trick, I think dads would already know it (And love it!). Instead, play the old school version and actually build a fort! There are two ways to catch some rest during this trick.

First, tell the kids to build the fort around you. So, while they are building the castle, you are laying low with your eyes closed. This may result in a few abrupt wake-ups when blankets come crashing down, but a few minutes is better than none! The second way is once the fort is built, they won’t leave. Grab some flashlights, books, and toys. You can guarantee yourself a thirty-minute cat nap now!

12 At The Gym

When desperate times call, plan a fake gym session. Hopefully, your family joined a YMCA where child care is built in. Drop your kid off, and go get comfortable in the locker room. If your gym is super bougie and has massage chairs or a pool, your life just became a whole lot better! I think childcare is about an hour long, so pencil yourself in for a nice 45-minute snooze anywhere you can find.

Now, we don’t offer solutions for how to explain to your wife why you are still rocking a dad bod after a month of gym sessions so that one is on you!

11 Sleeping Beauty

Little girls love fairy tales and playing dress up. If wearing a princess costume and a tiara will earn you some sleep, then you better squeeze your feet into those heels and not complain. In order to successfully earn some shut-eye, you need to offer to be the sleeping princess.

You better act your heart out and win an Academy Award in order to convince her that she needs to slay a dragon, cross a bridge, climb a tower, fight the trolls, and attend a ball all before she is allowed to come and wake you! Just don’t fall into too deep of a sleep!

10 Learn To Sleep With Your Eyes Open

I mentioned this trick earlier, and eventually, it may be your last card in the deck. So listen up! Once you master this skill you will be loving dad life even more. A quick nap during dinner, or while you guys are house hunting on the web will literally change your life.

There are a million videos on how to train your body to do this trick and I think you will enjoy the results. Enroll yourself in the University of Sleep and earn your Bachelors in sleeping with your eyes open. A quick Youtube tutorial will have you graduating in no time!

9 During The Sporting Event

If your daughter does ballet, you just won the lottery. Sadly, if your child is into an outdoor sport, you may have a tougher time. During those long dance recitals, slide down into the chair, close your eyes, and rest up. Grandma will most likely hit you before your child takes the stage, so you won’t miss a thing!

Now, for the outdoor sport, you will need to pretend you are one of those parents who likes to “watch from the car.” Park your car where you can still see the field and enjoy! Just be sure to know if your kid scored a goal or not before the game is over!

8 Body Gate Nap

This trick only works if your baby is young and can’t walk yet. Find a corner in the house, put some toys there, and prepare to become a human baby gate. Yes, I am totally serious. Wrap your body from one wall to the other so he or she can’t crawl away. It is important for kids to learn to be independent and play alone.

So, there is no harm in getting some rest while they play! Just be sure you are a still sleeper! We don’t need any babies escaping. If your child is young enough, they will be so occupied they won’t even realize you are sleeping!

7 Pretend Sleepover


Your kids will get to the age where they beg you to let them have a sleepover. They won’t be old enough, but having a fake sleepover with you will turn into a win for everyone. Get out the sleeping bags, pop some popcorn, play board games, and then pretend it’s sleep time.

Crawl into that amazing sleeping bag, turn off the lights, and prepare for some R&R! Set an alarm for 15 minutes and explain how you guys are going to pretend to sleep until the alarm goes off for the morning. Trust me, they might even fall asleep too!

6 Visit The Doctors

We all know that going to the doctor's office requires waiting for at least 15 minutes in the lobby before your appointment. Ummm hello, jump on that opportunity to sleep, mister. What are you waiting for? This one is a give in! Once you have checked in with the receptionist, you are all set to sit back and shut those eyes.

You may wake up startled when you hear your name called, but it is worth a few funny looks and the embarrassment. Waiting for appointments will no longer be an annoyance, as you will hope for an even longer wait time now!

5 Human Sticker Book

If someone told you as a child you could color on them and put stickers on their face, you would go nuts! Lay out the rules of sticking to the arms and feet only. No one wants to go to work with hearts and scribbles all over their face. Give them a few washable markers, a sticker book, and allow them to go to town.

The extra sleep you get will be worth it, even after ripping off stickers and scrubbing ink off your skin. Mention to them that you are going to close your eyes because you don’t want to see the masterpiece until it’s finished! Colour slowly sweetie!

4 Play House

What do babies do? Sleep. Offer to play house and ask to be the baby! Easy peasy! You get to lay there in the fetal position while they run around pretending to be mom and dad. You may have to wake up every five minutes to move to have breakfast or get in the car, but 5 minutes is better than none!

If they won’t let you be the baby, ask to play the mom and pretend to go to a beauty salon. Lay there while they comb your hair, paint your toes, rub your back, and play! Pretending to play mom at the spa may not be what you want your neighbors seeing through the window, but hey, a desperate man will do anything for a little snooze!

3 Human Race Track

Ready to become the most popular dad? Grab a plain white shirt and draw a mini town on your shirt! Here is what is so amazing about this idea. To start, you get to lay your head down and sleep. And of course, the cars are a makeshift massage.

Sounds like you will be passed out within minutes. Kids will find this so fun, you will have them right there by you safe and sound, and get to close your eyes for a bit. Now, if your not the crafty DIY stay at home daddy, you can totally pick up one of these awesome shirts on Amazon!

2 The Fake Call

The days of cursing at the phone after being on hold for 30 minutes will become your favorite past time. Being on hold with customer service will save your sleep life. You have two choices, pretend you need to take care of something.

Everyone knows a call with customer service is not quick, so you have earned yourself at least 20 minutes. Depending on your career choice, making calls at all hours of the day may be a norm. So, fake a call in the bedroom for a quick 15 minutes to help rejuvenate your body! Ring, Ring, ZZZZ!

1 Hide And Seek


Pure genius. This game may sound a lot like the classic game of hide and seek but it is actually called hide and sleep. Don’t worry, it is way different and requires less work! Perfect to play after a long day of work when a quick rest is needed. So here’s the deal, tell your little energizer bunny to count to 50 (even higher is better)!

While they count, go hide in a spot where you can catch a few extra needed minutes of shut-eye. The amount of sleep you get is all determined on your hiding skills! Game on dad!

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