A while ago, Sam graduated from a crib to a toddler bed. The first nap time he promptly figured out how to open his door and strutted proudly into our bedroom. Given that we were on the top floor of a 3-story townhome and weren’t entirely studious about setting the child gate at the top of the stairs, we decided to go for the nuclear option to resolve the situation – we put one of those spinny covers on the inside of his door so that he couldn’t get out. Problem solved. Except that it created a new problem. Well…a couple problems.
Firstly, I want to note that I’ve never been 100% comfortable with the solution – it seemed wrong to trap him in his room. If the worst happened and he NEEDED to get out of his room, he’d be out of luck.
The second problem, though, was how to go about graduating him to a non-locked door. We had visions of our 10 year old still being locked in his room because we couldn’t trust him. Thus, the months passed, the way that they do.
When we moved into the new house, we forgot the handle cover at the old house so we figured it couldn’t hurt to give leaving the handle off the door a go. The first night he let himself out pretty quickly and went to play in the bathroom (of all places). Sighing, we walked over and encouraged him to go back to bed and told him that he needed to stay in his room. Weirdly, he actually did it! He still lets himself out of his room in the morning sometimes, but that’s actually kind of nice. We’ll hear him fiddling with the door and then *thump thump thump thump thump thump* as he runs on his little legs around the corner and into our room, all smiles.
Problem solved. Both of them.
Occasionally, though, we’ll still hear him messing with the door to his room after bedtime. Invariably we’ll walk around the corner to see what’s going on, only to find that a stuffed animal or book has been placed outside his door and he has returned to his slumber.
We don’t know exactly what the object in question did to earn its relegation, but it must have been serious.