What can I DO??? (x-posted in toddlers) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 02:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yesterday, I turned my back on my 15 month old for about 30 seconds to pop lunch in the oven. We had been playing outside all morning, and had to come in for lunch. When I turned around, she had vanished. Ok, she’s done that before.

So I checked her book corner, the upstairs rocking chair, in the cupboards, all the places she typically goes. Nowhere. I’m starting to get nervous.

Then I hear a knock at the front door. I go to answer it, and a hunter and his buddies was at the front door. “uh, we stopped because, uh… your baby is in the highway”

Holy *#&$!!! How did she get THERE?? I took her back inside, and she made a beeline to daddy’s office, the back window. She had popped the screen out, climbed out the window, and gone about running outside.

So now I know she knows windows can be gotten out of, and how to get the screens out to do it. What can I do to prevent this in the future?

My mother recommends switching her if she touches any windowsill in the house, then she would learn. I’m not too keen on that idea, but I don’t want her getting killed by climbing out a second story window or from being in the highway when a logging truck that can’t slow down or stop comes by.

PLEASE HELP!!!
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#2 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 03:26 PM
 
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As a couple others on the toddler board said, switching her isn't going to do anything except make her afraid of you (and afraid of windows)...

It may be that for this time period (until this gets out of her system), you just can't let her roam around the house free, you've got to keep her with you - and if you can't put or keep locks on all the windows, then put locks on at least one toddlerproofed/windowproofed room with a gate on the door, so if you have to run to the bathroom, or stick lunch in the oven, or shower, or whatever, there's a safe space for her and a worry-free space for you.

There are certain things I just know I cannot trust DS with, so I don't even let him get in the situation. For example, many mamas here let their children in the bathroom with them while they shower...my DS is way too active and explorative for that, it's just too dangerous for him and would make my nerves shot worrying about what he was getting into in the 5 minutes I "relax" while I shower every day....so I completely toddler proofed his room, furniture is attached to walls, no window blinds, windows locked, bumper on closet door, gate on the room door, so that he can be in there playing with toys and I don't have to worry about him. It's my "go to" spot if I need to be somewhere he can't be, and he's totally happy playing in there for a bit.

You need to make this a non issue by babyproofing and not giving her the opportunity to access the windows (block them, lock them, whatever), because at 15 months, she is an exploring machine with zero impulse control (unless you "switch" her; but stopping with that wouldn't be impulse control, it would be stopping because she was afraid of getting hit ).

You CAN do this without hitting her, it just requires more effort and creativity on your part...anyone who thinks GD is the "easy" way to parent has NO IDEA.


ETA: Wow, I can't believe I forgot to give you ;it must have been terrifying!

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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#3 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 04:04 PM
 
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I also agree about babyproofing the windows. My son is 22 months old and he doesn't have free run of the house. We have gates and move them around as we need them, he stays in the rooms we are in so we can keep a watch on him. He is still too little to understand "danger."

Let us know what how you fix it. What a scary thing for you to have gone through! Hugs!!! Oh, and I'm very, very glad your daughter was alright and those gentlemen were there to find her and bring her home.
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#4 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 05:43 PM
 
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Quote:
As a couple others on the toddler board said, switching her isn't going to do anything except make her afraid of you (and afraid of windows)...
and possibly also teach her that hitting is ok, and that people you love will hurt you. My dh's family has a story from his toddlerhood. He would run into the street, they would spank him. He would run into the street, they would spank him. He would run into the street, they would spank him.... Aparently, no amount of sanking taught him to stay out of the street. It's entirely possible that hitting her will not teach her to stay away from windows.

Quote:
I also agree about babyproofing the windows. My son is 22 months old and he doesn't have free run of the house. We have gates and move them around as we need them, he stays in the rooms we are in so we can keep a watch on him. He is still too little to understand "danger."

You can buy locks for windows that only allow them to open a couple of inches. That's what I would do.
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#5 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 06:50 PM
 
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Think you can get those locks at any home improvement store.

You must have been terrified...

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#6 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 06:53 PM
 
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I ordered those locks online.
You can set them so the windows only open a few inches.

Sorry that happened- that had to be very scary!



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#7 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 09:48 PM
 
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In addition to all the reasons stated by PPs, switching may teach her not to open the windows... but only when you're there - i.e. when the threat is there. If she escapes your notice briefly, she'll be right out. Prevention is the only thing you can realistically do at this age. Window locks, baby gates in the windows, whatever it takes.
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#8 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 11:06 PM
 
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wow, i can totally empathize. my dd at that age was returned to me by a neighbor, having unlocked the door, run down the street and around the corner to a major roadway while i thought she was napping! Now I have a 16 month old ds who, when not trying to dive headfirst from the loftbed to the hardwood floor, is determined to kill himself standing on the kitchen chairs tipping them back and forth while i try to make dinner. It IS maddening, but please, please don't hit your child. The other posters have said it all, buy those locks and find a climbing structure for your dd to play on! Good luck.
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#9 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 11:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I will look into the babygates in the windows. Since they're all of 4 inches fron the ground and have to be open since it's HOT already and the AC doesn't work, I don't think the "few inches" locks would be feasible.

Just a note- I have no intention of spanking her, I was just frustrated that my only/all of my IRL advice has been very.... "Pearly".

Thanks for the suggestions!
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#10 of 10 Old 03-01-2006, 11:51 PM
 
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can you open your windows from the top instead of the bottom? that might help, but not sure. maybe something like this -- http://www.onestepahead.com/product/...27764/117.html . they also have these -- http://www.onestepahead.com/product/86198/464/117.html , but they're more expensive.

how scary! mama.

ETA: how about rigging something up on the screens or windows themselves like bells that would make noise to let you know your little escape artist is trying to get out again?

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