or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Are your kids allowed to close their door?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Are your kids allowed to close their door? - Page 2

post #21 of 113
Our kids are allowed to close their doors. Even when friends are over. I do keep an ear out to make sure things don't get too quiet when friends are over. But, I think it's important to be able to have privacy.

In reality, they rarely close their doors unless friends are over. They won't sleep with their doors closed, and they don't like to play alone with their doors closed. They don't lock, so it's a moot point.
post #22 of 113
If it's their own room and they're alone, they've been allowed to do that since they were..3 or so? Well, my boys can be in there together and still close the door, as they share a room. Keep in mind that the rooms have always been fully childproofed, including furniture straps and passive outlet covers, ect.

With friends, the door must always be open slightly.

The kids are 8, 7, and 7. Though I have to say, whenever we have friends over the kids spend little time in the rooms or even in the house--they're always out exploring our property and building forts in the lilac bush or running through the ferns.

We are open with our kids about the appropriateness of body exploration with other kids (not appropriate), which typically is the main concern that I've heard people raise with giving children privacy. We've also been open about how self-exploration is fine, as long as it is private.

When I was worried about the kids choking on toys or sticking forks into the sockets, I kept direct line supervision of them and playdate friends. Now that I don't have to worry about that (as much), and they know the rules for guests and the consequences of breaking them, I see nothing wrong with allowing semi-privacy. I think bringing up concerns directly, rather than denying privacy because you want to make sure to catch them, tends to work a lot better.

That being said, our kids also understand that they do not have full privacy, nor the expectation of it. They don't have independent locks on the doors (though we always knock). We can and do occasionally look through the contents of the DSes and will do so for computer accounts in the future as well. Even at this age, I do generally check in on playdates (even if they're running through our property) about every 45 minutes or so.

So with all that stuff, closed doors is probably not the greatest privacy concern--our wooded and bushed property is. But with a combination of supervision and communication, so far we've not had to deal with any uncomfortable situations.
post #23 of 113
Yeah they have to keep the door shut actually or the tv bothers me and dh. They have been shutting it for about 2 years now and the kids are 9 and 5.

They dont have friends over but I wouldnt mind having the door shut I dont think depending on the kids.
post #24 of 113
Oooooh...I'm actually surprised by the responses here. My kid is still little, but I feel very, very uncomfortable with the thought of allowing him to close the door when he is older. Like a PP I also grew up in a house where closing doors was not allowed, and I don't recall that it ever bothered me. I like being able to always hear what is going on in my general space and by closing the door (or by my kid closing his door) that becomes impossible.

Maybe its because I am an only child, and I grew up in a family without any abuse, but I honestly don't understand why my kid should want to shut himself off from his family? To isolate himself from the rest of us...it seems very alienating to me. I can't imagine ever wanting to do the same (with the exception of in the bathroom, but that is just because if you don't close the door people can look through the living room window and see you pot squating).

So no. I don't see myself allowing a shut door, because I can't see any healthy reason for it.
post #25 of 113
DD shuts her door often enough. If she doesn't want to be bothered by DS she will go into her room and shut the door, if she leaves it open he will eventually follow her in. We have no problem with her shutting the door.

Once DS can work the door knobs (he still has some trouble with those) and he starts feeling the need for that kind of privacy he will be allowed to shut to door too.

Our bedroom doors don't have locks so locking the doors is a non-issue. We have no problem if the door is shut when friends are over either. Since DD has done nothing to warrant us not trusting her alone with friends, we see no reason to require the door stay open. As it is that is a good enough reason for her to stay out of trouble.

I never did understand parents that have a "doors open" rule.
post #26 of 113
A healthy reason for allowing doors to be closed. Different people need different amounts of space and privacy. Not allowing them to set physical boundaries (with in certain guidelines like if someone knocks you have to open up) can, I believe, inhibit a child from learning to set non-physical boundaries with others. Privacy isn't evil, or bad, it is just privacy.
post #27 of 113
DD1 is 7 and ds2 is 5. They share a room. They're allowed to close their door anytime, but their room doesn't have a lock. If anyone wants out (of any room, not just their's), they have to let them out. DS2 occasionally closes the door on dd2 (13 months) and she can't open it from inside and flips.

DS1 (17) can close his door, whether he has friends over or not. He's also allowed to lock it. We put a lock on his door to protect his stuff from his younger siblings.
post #28 of 113
Sure they can shut their doors. (My kids are 4.5 and 3.5) My son likes to play by himself sometimes, I think he feels more comfortable with his pretend play when Mommy isn't watching (I was the same way as a kid.) I only get worried when they are in a room together, with the door shut and it's been quiet for awhile (usually means they are up to something.) The locks are inverted on their bedroom doors so they can't lock me out. They have locked themselves (or me) in before.

I see my kids' rooms as their quiet space in our home and if they need time in there alone, with the door shut, that's fine. When they are feeling overwhelmed by something, they naturally retreat to their rooms with the door shut for some quiet time. Seems perfectly normal and healthy to me. *shrugs*
post #29 of 113
Absoloutely (although they usually don't). The older two are also allowed to lock them, especially my oldest (will be 10 in January), who sometimes needs to keep my youngest out if he wants any time to himself, or to do something like build a cool lego something or other. My almost 5 year old is not allowed to lock any doors, but only because he has a habit of locking them and closing them from the outside, which is a huge PITA.
post #30 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
Maybe its because I am an only child, and I grew up in a family without any abuse, but I honestly don't understand why my kid should want to shut himself off from his family? To isolate himself from the rest of us...it seems very alienating to me.
Why is closing one's bedroom door "shutting oneself off from the family"? Or at least, why is doing it while going to the bathroom not, and shutting a bedroom for quiet/meditation/reading/masturbation/whatever is? And how is it isolation?

It's temporary. To meet a personal need for privacy. If privacy = shutting out family members, then logically, you should be just as concerned with bathroom doors being shut.

Being able to understand and accept that our kids may have different tolerances/needs from our own is really important, I think. YOU might like to have an "ear on everything" but to some people that would drive them nuts (and their reactions to constantly have to have that input from everywhere might very well be more isolating that giving themselves an hour of quiet reading in their room from time to time.

It's not all or nothing, where either you remove your doors or only live in silent isolation in your room, KWIM?
post #31 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
So no. I don't see myself allowing a shut door, because I can't see any healthy reason for it.
What if your child is an introvert, and just needs time to themselves? What if occaisional "isolation" keeps them from being overwhelmed.

My family was a loud family, and I was a quiet kid/teenager. Even the noises they made in everyday living sometimes drove me crazy, especially in high school when I was trying to study (but also when I was younger and just trying to read a book in peace).

My oldest son is very, very introverted. He participates in family life, but he really needs time to himself to be able to cope with the time he does spend with us.

Also? I think it's healthy for kids and teenagers to be able to explore themselves sexually, and I wouldn't expect (or want) them to do that with the door open. My husband and I don't leave the door open when we have sex.
post #32 of 113
I am curious why people don't allow doors to be shut when friends are over? I grew up (in retrospect, although at the time, I didn't know it) with lots of freedom running around on my farm and the farm of my best friend across the road and I am pretty sure we started running around our barns and back yards and woods (with time to check in) when we were 6 or 7, or at the latest, 8 so I guess we were alone, unsupervised for some amount of time, although not far from our house. Anyway, like some others, I've never even heard of the idea of not allowing children to shut doors with or without friends. I'm not against it, per se, just wondering if people are afraid that kids will just generally get into mischief if they have a physical barrier like a door? Or are there concerns with sexual experimentation? Just curious. Something to think about as our boy grows up - I want to give him freedom - but also provide the sorts of boundaries that help children thrive and feel safe... Such a hard balance!
post #33 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tigerchild View Post
Why is closing one's bedroom door "shutting oneself off from the family"? Or at least, why is doing it while going to the bathroom not, and shutting a bedroom for quiet/meditation/reading/masturbation/whatever is? And how is it isolation?

It's temporary. To meet a personal need for privacy. If privacy = shutting out family members, then logically, you should be just as concerned with bathroom doors being shut.

Being able to understand and accept that our kids may have different tolerances/needs from our own is really important, I think. YOU might like to have an "ear on everything" but to some people that would drive them nuts (and their reactions to constantly have to have that input from everywhere might very well be more isolating that giving themselves an hour of quiet reading in their room from time to time.

It's not all or nothing, where either you remove your doors or only live in silent isolation in your room, KWIM?
Hmmm, well for the record we didn't shut the bathroom door when I was a kid either. So that argument doesn't really fly.
post #34 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by eclipse View Post
What if your child is an introvert, and just needs time to themselves? What if occaisional "isolation" keeps them from being overwhelmed.

My family was a loud family, and I was a quiet kid/teenager. Even the noises they made in everyday living sometimes drove me crazy, especially in high school when I was trying to study (but also when I was younger and just trying to read a book in peace).

My oldest son is very, very introverted. He participates in family life, but he really needs time to himself to be able to cope with the time he does spend with us.

Also? I think it's healthy for kids and teenagers to be able to explore themselves sexually, and I wouldn't expect (or want) them to do that with the door open. My husband and I don't leave the door open when we have sex.

Both my DH and I are also introverts and I still don't understand why the door has to be closed to get privacy. We get plenty of "quiet time" with doors open just by respecting one another's space. I would feel really strange if my DH wanted to retreat into another room with the door shut.
post #35 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
Both my DH and I are also introverts and I still don't understand why the door has to be closed to get privacy. We get plenty of "quiet time" with doors open just by respecting one another's space. I would feel really strange if my DH wanted to retreat into another room with the door shut.
You mentioned that you were an only child - you probably didn't experience siblings coming in and bothering you all the time. Little siblings aren't well know for respecting privacy. And it really isn't privacy, if at any time someone can walk by and see and hear everything you're doing. Even having my mom walk into my room was distracting, being able to hear every last thing that anybody said or did just. . .disturbed my peace. I think you should probably think about what you will do if your children have different privacy needs than you do. It seems unnecessarily controlling and disrespectful to tell anyone (child or not) that they can't set their own boundaries, and that's what this would be doing. Assuming a child is old enough that getting themselves in danger is a concern, I really, really don't understand how it could be unhealthy for them to want to read a book on their bed and play some music with the door shut.
post #36 of 113
I don't care if they shut their doors, although they usually don't want to. DS sometimes likes to so that he can play without his little sister bothering him.

My knee-jerk thought when I first read the OP was "Yes, but not with friends over," but the more I think about it and remember hanging out with my friends in our rooms with the door shut (99% of the time doing perfectly innocent things), I don't really see myself enforcing an open-door policy unless I feel I need to for some reason.

I do have an open-door policy for the little "secret room" (under-the-stairs closet that we've turned into a dress-up room) downstairs because DD can't open doors by herself yet and I don't want her to a) get shut in there and be unable to get out, or b) be excluded from that room by DS.
post #37 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by MusicianDad View Post
A healthy reason for allowing doors to be closed. Different people need different amounts of space and privacy. Not allowing them to set physical boundaries (with in certain guidelines like if someone knocks you have to open up) can, I believe, inhibit a child from learning to set non-physical boundaries with others. Privacy isn't evil, or bad, it is just privacy.
totally agree

One of my kids has sensory issues and needs very different things than her sister -- less noise, less chaos, more down time. Not allowing her to go to her room and shut her door would be truly cruel.

We also have pets and shutting doors allows us to control them better.

My family all likes to watch TV more than I do, so sometimes I go to my room and shut the door just so I can read.

We only ever had an issue with one friend one time, and made a rule that when that specific child was over, doors had to be left open. It was about not trusting the other child and not about anything related to my kids.

If my kids' doors are shut, I knock before entering.

My privacy was never respected as a child. Neither were my feelings. I think the two go together.
post #38 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by eclipse View Post
What if your child is an introvert, and just needs time to themselves? What if occaisional "isolation" keeps them from being overwhelmed.


I have a very close friend who needs a chance to "shut out the world" so to speak. She's not isolating herself from her family or anyone else. When she gets overwhelmed though, she literally withdraws from her surroundings. I mean no talking, no eye contact, and quite literally stuck in a state of being able to really respond to anyone around her. She has a sensory disorder, her main way of staying connected to the world around her is shutting the door and having some actual quiet.
post #39 of 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
Hmmm, well for the record we didn't shut the bathroom door when I was a kid either. So that argument doesn't really fly.
I would pay my kids to shut the door when they're in the bathroom.
post #40 of 113
Of course it's okay for them to close their doors!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Are your kids allowed to close their door?