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Leaving an infant alone in an apartment? - Page 2

post #21 of 35
This sounds like the stories of farm families in earlier generations who would leave infants/young children untended while the crops needed to be planted or harvested etc.

Different times, different cultures, different standards.

I'm curious why you're concerned about something that happened so long ago? Is your MIL making suggestions about how closely you supervise your own children and using her own experiences as a comparison?
post #22 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
The fact that she needed to lock the apartment makes it unsafe to me.
This. My first concern would be the neighbor losing the key.
post #23 of 35
Thread Starter 
OP here! Thank you for all of the insight into this. I totally see the logic in the fact that the apartments shared a wall and therefore were not much different than a large house.

The idea doesn't make me cringe because of kidnapping or a break-in though. The thing I would have worried about would be fires or baby being injured and the monitor not working so that no one heard the cries. I am a wee bit paranoid about fires (not sure why, never been in one) and the thought of not being able to grab kiddo and head out the nearest door or window is really rattling to me. What if the neighbor didn't know that the apartment was on fire until her walls were burning too? Ack!

And someone asked the valid question of why this bothers me when it happened 20 years ago. That is because I just completely overthink and worry about everything, especially when I'm pregnant and extra hormonal!
post #24 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyactsofcharity View Post
OP here! Thank you for all of the insight into this. I totally see the logic in the fact that the apartments shared a wall and therefore were not much different than a large house.

The idea doesn't make me cringe because of kidnapping or a break-in though. The thing I would have worried about would be fires or baby being injured and the monitor not working so that no one heard the cries. I am a wee bit paranoid about fires (not sure why, never been in one) and the thought of not being able to grab kiddo and head out the nearest door or window is really rattling to me. What if the neighbor didn't know that the apartment was on fire until her walls were burning too? Ack!
I've been there with the crazy pregnancy hormones :P

I still don't see it being different than being in another part of the house. That part of the house could catch on fire and I might not know it until its too late.
post #25 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by newbymom05 View Post
Honestly, I think the hands-on/AP/helicopter parenting we see now is a direct result of the horribly lax parenting of the 70's-80's.
Sorry to derail a bit... I see how you can group hands-on and AP together, but lumping helicopter parenting into that category seems way off to me. In fact, I might have agreed with you if you had just said "helicopter" above.

The parenting choices of *most* of the other APish parents I know are the result of research, natural mindedness, and instinct... certainly not the result of their own lax parenting. (As an example, my mom raised me in a manner quite in line with AP, and without helicoptering. Even as a child I recognized that my friends were parented differently, and that many aspects of those differences did not seem better at all... it's no surprise to me that many years later I would identify as an AP parent and most of them would not).

As for the original post, it's not something I would do, but it doesn't freak me out as negligent either.
post #26 of 35
Like others said, I see no difference between this and leaving the baby at one end of a large house, or inside with a baby monitor while you're outside gardening, watching older kids, etc...
post #27 of 35
I'm in an apartment building, and I think the setup makes all the difference. Our building is all brick. There are 2 fire stairwells, but you can't go out a window, it's literally a skyscraper. No fire escapes, no exitable windows as such. The building therefore has to be fireproof and have sprinklers, and such. Its made of poured concrete and brick. There was actually a kitchen fire on the first floor a couple years ago, and while it damaged the second floor balcony directly above, it did nothing whatsoever to any of the adjoining restaurants nor floors above. So I don't think I would worry about a neighbor watching a child in case of a fire in such a building.

I probably wouldn't lock the door so the neighbor could get to the baby easier, but on the other hand, we have doormen downstairs and most neighbors leave doors open to the hallway anyway. More friendly. (I don't, but that's because the dog has tried to go visiting other apartments before, and gone for a surprise--to her--elevator ride). I know people in giant houses where they leave their babies 3 floors away and then leave the baby monitor where they can't hear it easily either... unless the baby is really young or is old enough to climb out of the crib, I think checking periodically and a monitor seems okay.

I do go down the hall to do laundry or recycling while my kids are asleep or just watching TV, but they're a bit older. The only stairs and elevator to the exit is by the recycle/laundry so no one's coming in or kids coming out without me knowing it; I feel pretty safe in our building. I can also hear them in our apartment if I leave the door open, and vice versa.

So I don't know, picturing where we live now, I wouldn't do what your MIL did, but I wouldn't think it a horrible thing to do either.
post #28 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa85 View Post
One morning I awoke to a strange man sleeping in my basement on the couch. Judging by looks and cleanliness he wasn't homeless. He was dressed in dress pant, shirt, and tie. Dh and I didn't know who was or why he was there. Before waking him, we checked out the house, purse in plain sight was still there, back sliding door that we did always lock was open, all electronics and jewelry were there. Turns out our neighbors had friends from out of town for a wedding. We live in a mirror-image duplex, and the dude was too wasted to know which house was which. He was completely innocent, and embarrassed beyond belief but I will never again leave my doors unlocked.
That's hilarious! (although I'm sure at the time it was a bit scary for you - but wow, what a story!) That guy must have wanted to crawl under a rock. That reminds me of a time when my friend got into "her" car after work, noticed things didn't look quite the same as when she left it. When the actual owner came to get into the car and saw my friend there poking around looking for her "lost" stuff, it was just then that my friend realized the embarrassing coincidence that her key opened up this identical car, and her car was about 4 spaces down.
post #29 of 35
The scenario in the OP makes me feel a little panicky because of the locked door. What if the neighbor lost the key? What if the mom left the key on the table, and didn't realize until too late? What if something happened to the neighbor and no one else knew where the key was? So many what if's going on in my head!
I will admit, though, that I'm paranoid about kids being locked in cars and homes.
If the door wasn't locked, I probably wouldn't think that much of it.
post #30 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by annethcz View Post
I'd be okay with that. It doesn't sound any different than leaving a baby sleep inside while mom is out working in the yard or in a different part of the house.
See but I would NEVER do that!! I'm not judging anyone who does but i could never even be on another floor while ds slept as an infant. 99% of the time he slept ON me anyway I don't trust baby monitors either!
post #31 of 35
Knowing that she'd be leaving when her baby was napping, and the neighbor would be babysitting anyway, why didn't she just put him down to sleep in the neighbor's apartment to start with? To me, that would have been the logical thing to do... and the safest.

No, I'd never leave a small child or baby alone in an apartment with a locked door.
post #32 of 35
When I was little...my parents used to let me sit in the "special seat" (the arm rest between the front seats) and my mom used to use her arm as a "seatbelt" . Or I'd ride in the "way back" of the station wagon. I was TOTALLY happy (blanket, toys, and the dog rode back there with me) but I would have been a projectile if we'd ever had an accident.

(and the ped started me on OJ at 3 months...yikes)

I think it's a case of "when you know better, you do better." My mom is horrified and defensive when I bring this stuff up, but it WAS the norm (70s, not 80s) I wouldn't leave my kids alone as babies...my own sense of responsibilities (plus legal) liability. Leaving your baby alone in an apartment is inviting social services to visit. Obviously, walking down the hall, etc to do laundry is a judgement call, but leaving for work for the day? I wouldn't go there.
post #33 of 35
I would assume they would have tested the monitor to ensure that it was working well. In my apartment complex, we have very good fire alarms (they work a little too well, if you know what I mean), and not so good insulation (you can hear people walking around the apartments next to yours). The neighbors really CAN tell what's going on -- add a baby monitor and they might as well be in the next room.

I would have literally no problem with that scenario at all. All of the "what ifs" are very, very far fetched and the baby was well-cared for.
post #34 of 35
I really do not see it as a really bad thing. I do think it would be frowned on a lot more now then then, but really like others have said to me it is no worse then having a sleeping baby at the other end of your house.
I knew a two ladies about 12 or so years ago would almost every day put their babies down for a nap. Both kids were around 1 at this time and then take turns going next door to each others houses to visit with each other taking a baby monitor with them. To me this is worse then what your MIL did.
post #35 of 35
It sounds reasonable to me.
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