Dad Doesn't Believe in Babyproofing

Updated on February 25, 2008
M.J. asks from Salt Lake City, UT
16 answers

My husband thinks that since our mothers didn't use babygates and other babyproofing items, and since we didn't die, that we don't need to use them either. How do I convince him that making the house babysafe is important? Not only for our baby's safety, but for my sanity!

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

Thanks to everyone for your replies. Many of your responses helped me have the courage to stand up for babyproofing! I will do it for me, whether my husband thinks it is necessary or not. He may not understand why I want to do it, but he's always willing to let me have what I think is important. He can definitely understand the "better safe than sorry" mentality. "The risks are low but the stakes are high" is something he likes to say, and I think it applies here.

He loves me and our daughter and only wants the best for us. It may take some time to convince him how necessary this is, but now I have some great points to support my side, thanks to all of you.

More Answers



answers from Salt Lake City on

Hi M.,

I will give you a quote from my daughter's pediatrician. "Now that Reeanna is immunized the only thing that will KILL her at this point is an accident." If you need back up have your pediatrician talk to your husband. My mother didn't use a car seat when I was a baby, but it is required by law now. I am still alive, though I didn't have a car seat as a child, but there is enough evidence to persuade a whole country of law makers to require car seats. How well would your husbands line sit with an officer who should witness your child without a car seat. I think the officer might chuckle as he were to hand cuff him, with charges of child endangerment. :o)

If someone were to tell me that child proofing a home was unnecessary, I would assume they were joking and laugh histerically.

Kind Regards,

2 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Cloud on

Let's give this woman's hubby the benefit of the doubt and respect M. please by NOT calling names!!!!!!!
Hi M., this is a tough one! Is there are way you could purchase a gate yourself? Otherwise, I use other things in my home to block the baby from going places. You kind of have to be creative about it but mabey if the house is getting cluttered by you moving things around to keep her safe your hubby will reconsider. My mom went and bought a gate for me when she saw me using my beautiful antique chairs down on their sides to block doorways. We have never paid full price for a gate. I am not good at garage sales but that is where we have found 2 of our 3 gates. Good luck and be safe and sane:)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Grand Rapids on

M., Don't try and convince him. Just put down the law for what makes YOU sane. It's not about what his/your parents did. It's about what you know will bring you and your little girl the most safe, calm, peaceful environment possible. Houseproofing with Limits off certain areas is not bad. After all, I'm limited by the sides of this post, as to how wide it can be, but it sure doesn't limit the length of my post. Limits actually create safe freedom. He doesn't have to watch his little girl all day, does he? And maybe he didn't die, but what about the others who did suffer harm??? He is just one drop in the bucket.
My husband wasn't concerned about the angle or tighness of my son's car seat! I was really angry about it, and told him that he could be causing more harm, by not doing it right. And, it's the law! I just put my foot down, and said that we were not going anywhere with him with the carseat not appropriately done. That's it. You have to put your foot down sometimes, and not ask permission. Good luck to you. Your interests sound so much like my own. Dreaming, art, music, and writing.....a reflective and creative life.



answers from Lansing on

Frankly, what I have discovered with a 3 yr old and 7 week old AND working full time~~'baby proofing' was more of a convenience for me than anything. Of course, all of my knives, cleaning products, etc are out of reach and I have plugs on my outlets; but as for the locks on the cabinent doors and the locks on the toilets~that was just so I didn't have more messes to clean up in my 'spare time'. :)



answers from Grand Rapids on

I also didn't babyproof alot of things.
I put a gate on my stairs, and things in the electric outlets.
The only doors that have locks are the pantry(she would do anything for fruit snacks LOL) and my bed room (she don't need to see what goes on at nap time :)
My knifes are all up high along with every chemical in my house. The only thing under my sink is the trash, I don't like that locked cause she can throw her own garbage away (I have lost a few spoons but o well they were take n toss)
If she had tried to get in the potty I would have put a lock on that door to.
If you choose not to babyproof at least move all the dangerous stuff out of reach, and buy a gate for the stairs.
Also make sure you make sure your child isn't holding onto the gate when you open it...sounds dumb but I was looking the other way talking to my hubby while I opened the gate and literly flung my own child down the stairs...thank the lord she only got rub burn and some brusies.
Sorry if this isn't much help.



answers from Lansing on

I see both views. I had gates up--one for the stairs and one for the doorway in my children's rooms. Tell him that if your children are awake and you need to shower, or do somthing they need to be confined to a small area free from harm.

I also see his side. We did not baby proof our whole house. I had breakable things out that I enjoyed, and felt that children should be taught to look without touching. My sister-in-law use to say "this is a treat for the eyes" I like that response. My kids learned!



answers from Milwaukee on


Just because he didn't die doesn't mean bad things can't happen!!
The little girl I sit for was at her gma's house- they didn't have a gate at the top of their stairs- even with her dad feet away telling her not to go down, about to grab her- she fell and split her head open which needed stiches (luckily that was it!)....

Maybe nothing bad will ever happen but I'm sure you agree that if something DID you both would feel aweful!
So unless he is going to be next to her or holding her at all times until she's 10+ there are some simple things that need to be done!

Sorry though- I'm not much help convincing him to change his mind- my husband is quite stubborn too and unless it's his idea it's just a fight to the death and I'm always wrong :)
You could just get the stuff and install it yourself???
Show him research- give him senarios that aren't ridiculous (the phone rings- she crawls... he has to use the bathroom.... etc).

Good Luck at any rate!



answers from Green Bay on

Such a hard situation to deal with.

I'm in the middle on this one. I won't be locking cabinets or covering outlets, but I'll certainly be putting up a babygate on the open stairs!

Our parents did a lot of things differently - docs gave them drugs that affected us (DES daughters), car seats weren't required, etc... - but as everyone's already pointed out that doesn't mean we should do what they did or that they had safe environments.

Perhaps you should ask your husband if we should do things the way they did them in the middle ages? After all, we're here so we probably don't need sterilization or pasteurization or immunizations either. They also routinely fed their children watered down wine and ale, should we follow their example?

Better safe than sorry. If it makes YOU feel better then you should do it. It isn't as if babyproofing means you aren't going to teach your children about danger or to listen to you, it's just a "backup" to ensure that when they don't listen/haven't learned yet that they aren't seriously injured by their inabilities yet. Maybe you could point out to your husband that such things not much different than insurance.




answers from Des Moines on

Could you talk to your husband and explain to him that while you recognize our parents may not have used these babyproofing items that times have changed and they made these items to make it easier for mothers to take care of children. Of course you didn't die from not having a home babyproofed, but has he ever asked his Mom how many times she had to tell him no or had close calls, etc? Depending on your child's level of curiosity- it can be a handful and quite stressful for a Mom! Some days- it would take my entire day to keep my little guy away from the stairs- I wouldn't even have time to make him food! In my mind, many items were invented to make our lives easier so that we could take on additional responsibilities without loosing our minds. For example; some of our mothers had to use a wringer washer to wash clothes- would he still want you to do that when a safer, easier to use washing machine is available?

Also, some of the very basic babyproofing probably doesn't effect his life that much. For example, covers on outlets- how often do you really plug and unplug stuff in your home? The only time I have to remove an outlet cover is to vaccuum. And cabinet latches- most of those are in the kitchen or under sinks- I'm sorry if I'm being presumptuous but if you are the SAHM- I'm assuming that you use those cabinets more than your husband and he would rarely open those cabinets and therefore rarely effected by those things. As far as gates; you can buy gates that can easily be removed with minimal effort and without cosmetic damage to your home- so when he's home you could keep the gates down and put them up when he isn't around.

I would even play the "can we just do it because you love me" card- he should consider himself lucky that you can find contentment with being able to babyproof your home- many women need diamonds and makeup and fancy clothes and a whole lot more to keep them happy- you're just asking for some covers for your electrical outlets. To me, in the world of keeping a spouse happy- this is an easy fix that he can win huge brownie points with you by letting you win this battle- let him know that!

Good Luck!



answers from Lansing on

Wow do I know what you mean! My husband didnt think we needed to do this too. The sad thing is that our little boy fell down the stairs once and that day he said I was right. Of course I liked the part that I was right. But this did have to happen if he listend to me in the first place. Now with our 5 month old everything is babyproofed and more. Sometimes it gets man a little longer to see that we arent crazy. Hang in there. Has he ever stayed home for the whole day without you there to see whats it like. I know I had to do that for him too see and thats when our son fell. Its hard to go somewhere for a whole day with out the kids and leave them, but sometimes thats the only way the men will learn. Your not the only one.



answers from Grand Rapids on

Hi M.,
I would just start babyproofing things. If you get the cheap wooden gates they're easy to take down when you don't need them. We haven't babyproofed our whole house but the dangerous things (cabinets that have chemicals in them, gates at stairs) are babyproofed. You can't predict when bad things can happen so you have to try and stop them from happening. Good luck.



answers from Boise on

In my experience, there's a reason why moms are the primary care takers of children. I've found that creative, persistant baby lessons were necessary in convincing my husband to embrace some basic mom no-brainers. And, do I mean creative, and persistant. I am a firm believer in "experience is the best teacher" (with the appropriate amount of supervision for the given experience however undercover). I create learning opportunities as needed. And, when all else fails, I resort to THE choice. "You know, I am not comfortable if there is no gate on our stairs. I can't concentrate on finishing dinner (fill in the appropriate event that would be important to him) when I need to constantly chase her away from the stairs. I will need your help when you come home from work to watch her so I can finish dinner so we can eat.....



answers from La Crosse on

Hi M.,
My husband at the time, never really had any input on childproofing. I did the gate and outlet covers that were very visable to child. Otherwise, I taught the words: fingers (they would look at those little hands and just knew not to touch something due to safety), ucky for ucky stuff, garbage for garbage (they would crawl to the cupboard for garbage), however, never store the empty tin cans near the garbage, that was only an issue once and was quickly resolved with bandages and removing them from the kitchen. Anyway, that training began when the crawling began. I never used the word no or don't till child was over 2 years old, due to I thought it was important to teach and not stop the child from learning. No stops learning and don't teaches,(I'll do it anyway no matter what you say), so explaining briefly helped tremendously. Again, FINGERS, was a great word for not touching this or that. Also, give them plastic, can goods and pans to play while you are in the kitchen. And a playpen if you need confinement during daydreaming or exercising. They can dance while you are exercising in the playpen.
Enjoy the playgate during the day when daddy not available.



answers from Rochester on

That is a hard one. The only thing I can say is maybe he will realize the dangers when he sees how clumsy children are when they start walking. One of my worst fears has always been that my children will fall down the steps. I have a brother who is much younger than I am. We had a door to our basement steps. One day our mom was doing laundry while he took a nap, so she left the door open to listen for him. Needless to say he had gotten up and down the steps he went. The result was a 18 month old with a cast on his arm. As far as chemicals go, most of us have them under our sinks or easily accessable cabinets for courious babies. In a ideal world we could hang everything from the ceiling until they learn to climb that is.The trouble with his theory is that there was alot of children who did get hurt, just because he didn't doesn't mean that no one ever did. I know its hard to explain to some guys that you would 'RATHER BE SAFE THAN SORRY', but try to explain the dangers to him or if you see any articles that mention any of that point them out. As for me, I just went out and got the gates, door handle covers and cabinet locks. If I hadnt I would never sleep. Good Luck



answers from Salt Lake City on

Our mothers also didn't use car seats. I say we're LUCKY we didn't die! And any parent in their right mind would never drive around with their baby in their arms today.

One thing to do is try to find statistics and articles about why it's important and what can happen if you don't babyproof your house. Does he go to your daughters doctors appointments with you? You might bring it up with the doctor and have the doctor explain the importance of it. If all else fails, I say just do it and tell him that it's important to YOU that it be done. Go buy all the things you need and babyproof your house. But think about what you really need right now and buy things as you notice your baby's skills are changing. Like, if your baby isn't walking, you don't need to buy the covers for your door handles until she's tall enough to reach the handles, etc.

Good luck.



answers from Boise on

I don't babyproof either....not really, I do have a gate at the top of our basement stairs but that is so he doesn't go down and bug his older siblings (my 17 month old). I just teach them what they can't get into and always have a drawer and cupboard that they can use, I never have a problem. I guess I just teach them no early on, but if this is a big issue for you then go out and do it yourself, don't ask the hubby just do it! It's not like he'll make you take it all down once it's there :).

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches