My wife and I have gotten into this thing where we lock our child into her bedroom at night to protect her. We use a door knob safety cover to keep her from opening the door from the inside. She is a normal four year old.

It's not something we are completely comfortable with and we are interested in any opinions on this matter that other would share.


asked 07 Apr '10, 01:40

drFLoyd5's gravatar image

accept rate: 33%


As Adam Davis says, what are you trying to protect her from? And I guess she's still wearing diapers?

(07 Apr '10, 10:42) Benjol
(27 Oct '11, 23:48) adoyo80

We feel safer with our kids doors and our door open so we can hear them easily. The doors to the outside are locked and difficult for a 3 or 4 year old to open, and the house is as child proof as we feel it needs to be.

You haven't explained what you are protecting her from, though, so I'm not sure if my experience applies.

We did have to spend some time training our kids to stay in bed after the transition from the crib to the bed, but with that accomplished we're satisfied that the child will come get us if needed, and can't get into too much trouble without making noise or turning on lights anyway, which would at least alert my wife (who is a light sleeper).

I suspect you know your child well enough to figure out what option will be the safest.


answered 07 Apr '10, 03:42

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Adam Davis
accept rate: 31%

In my experience, a "normal 4-year-old" ought to be able to leave their room and go to the bathroom when they need to, or come get the parents if there's a real problem, not to mention be able to escape any emergency that might make their own room unsafe (fire? earthquake? something happens to the parents?).


answered 07 Apr '10, 22:32

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edited 08 Apr '10, 22:14

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Scott ♦♦

I was intially horrified that you locked your child in their room. Then I realised that we have used to stair gates to lock our kids in their bedroom, or the living room, or ...

So, like most things parenting, I think if it works for you (and isn't illegal) then its okay. I personally would use a stairgate because it means the child can open the door and shout if they need you, and I think it is less worrying for the child if they can see out of the room. As has already been said though, you know your child and your house, we don't.

I am interested in what you are protecting the child from?


answered 07 Apr '10, 10:41

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I'd be concerned about their safety in an emergency. I think it's best to have them be able to leave should they need to. Teach them to stay in their room unless there's a very good reason for them not to. It's probably not easy but it seems do-able.


answered 10 Apr '10, 17:02

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edited 10 Apr '10, 17:28

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Scott ♦♦

We have a special needs daughter who will not stay in her room. If she comes out and we are asleep, she will sometimes come to our door, or open the front door, perhaps even go outside. She is 20 and mentally about 4. She is also on medication for bi-polar and psychosis as well as sleep medication. We lock her door at night so she cannot harm herself stumbling around the house. She is very loved, and taken care of. During the day we are awake and aware of her actions. She is free to go anywhere in the house as long as we are awake.


answered 21 Aug '10, 23:22

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In desperation to keep our son (under 3 at the time) in his room we put a safety catch on the door one night. I didn't feel that comfortable about doing it but it did work. Although not for long as he worked out how to open the door. We would open the door slightly after he went to sleep. Alternatively you could remove it after they are asleep.


answered 07 Apr '10, 07:21

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accept rate: 13%

edited 07 Apr '10, 09:42

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Asked: 07 Apr '10, 01:40

Seen: 12,370 times

Last updated: 28 Oct '11, 21:11