I have never heard of this and think it is very sad.
It's not normal under any circumstance. I am angry thinking about it.
A friend of mine just bought a house from a couple that had 3 young girls (i am not sure of their ages). I noticed the locks on their bedroom doors were on the hallway side of the door. So, essentially, the children were locked in their rooms. I asked my friend about it who said it was common practice to keep children locked in their rooms so they did not "escape" at night. I have never heard of this and for some reason it is really bothering me. Has anyone else ever heard of this?
I have never heard of this and think it is very sad.
It's not normal under any circumstance. I am angry thinking about it.
This is completely appalling to me!! These are children not animals. What if they need to go to the bathroom? What if there was a fire? Outrageous!!
I've known a few people who have done this to keep their kids in their rooms at night but I do not agree with it. Too many things can happen throughout the night that may warrant the child needing to get out of bed. For instance: using the bathroom, bad dream, getting ill and needing the comfort of mom and dad...the list goes on and on.
Part of parenthood in my own opinion is also parenting at night. As far as kids locking themselves in their room, take the knobs off or put knobs that do not lock.
I have heard of this before. And I have done it. Well, a different version. When my son was 22 months old we had to transition him to a a toddler bed so his baby sister could use the crib. Plus, he was climbing out of it. We lived in an apartment at the time off a very busy road. Well, one morning I awoke to see my son sitting on top of the stove turning the burners on and off. Nothing happened to him but it was enough that I put a child proof doorknob cover on the inside of his door. I only kept it there all night for a couple of nights. After that, I would put it on when he went to bed and take it off when I went to bed. I used it more as a tool to train him to stay in bed. After a month or so I didn't put it on but I warned him that if he got out of his room again I would put the lock on. That was enough for him. It's about doing something to keep your kids safe.
I have heard the argument "what about fires". Well, at the ages I have the locks on the door I would still need to go and get my child in the case of a fire. The odds of a fire were far slimmer then the odds of my child getting out of his room and running into traffic, starting the fire himself on the stove, or just wandering off.
I have since used this method on my 3rd child and only had the lock on the door for 2 days total. I plan on doing it again when my 4th child is switched to a toddler bed.
I can see how It is a little disconcerting when you see locks on the doors but some children do need them for their own safety.
If your worried about them getting out while your sleeping, how about trying a bell on the nob or an alarm at night.
They should not worry about why the locks were on there, instead they just need to change them to plain bedroom door knobs. I do not think it is advisable to lock children in bedrooms.
Sleep walkers can use gates as a deterrent on their bedroom doors and the head of the stairs.
I can see having locking bathroom knobs, they have little pins that unlock them in case a child accidentally locks themselves in the pin can be hung up high on the outside of the bathroom door.. Remember when you have guests, they will feel more comfortable with a lock on the bathroom. We do not have locking door knobs (our house was built in the 30's), but we have latches attached way up high so that the bathroom door can be locked only by adults.
The adult bedroom also has a latch up high, so that when we want to assure privacy we have been able to latch it.
I've heard of locks on the inside of master bedrooms so the parents could insure a little privacy during private times, but I have never heard of locks on the outside of any bedroom door. That is very dangerous and the locks should be removed. A fire could break out and the child couldn't get out or someone or something could attempt to come in thru a bedroom winow and the child couldn't get out. Any number of things could happen. The locks should definately be removed.
I agree to not judge unless you've been in their shoes. My oldest is a sleepwalker and about 5 ft from the stairs. When he first started doing it, we hung out by his room because he had no idea where he was and wouldn't see the steps - then we put the lock on his door until we could figure out a better answer. We tried putting a nightlight out there so he could see the stairs but it still didn't matter. We now have a baby gate up - he hasn't been able to figure out how to undo it at night yet, so we haven't needed to use the lock on his door in ages. But the lock is still on there in case we hear the gate open now. The lock is the only thing we've found that truly works.
I would be concerned for the safety issue of a fire, but honestly - the chances of my child being injured by falling down the stairs while he's asleep are far, FAR greater than being hurt in a fire. I had to weigh the odds on that one.
NO This is very dangerous for the children, if there is a fire how will they get out?If they are sick and need mom and dad how will they get them? If they need to go to the bathroom how? Would these parents want this for themselves???? This needs to be addressed with someone who can stop this.....wait awhile and see if it changes if not do something for the safety of the children.
Yep thats how the knobs are in my two year olds room. I don't lock him in there as punishment or leave him in there when he is awake. Its to keep him safe at night, I don't want him to wander through the house and hurt himself, and he has also locked me out once. I have a baby monitor in his room to hear him. He is a very happy, loving, little boy, and I put my all into my kids, I am not some kind of mean weirdo or anything.
Ok I would never lock my son in his room but I would lock the doors to rooms that want to keep him out of. I guess I am going to go against the trend here and not assume that these people were abusing their children, do we know for a fact that these people installed the locks on the door this way them selves- no, and if they did could it have possibly been to keep the kids from locking themselves in their rooms from the inside, do we know for a fact that they did indeed lock their children in their rooms again no. When we bought our house we noticed a few things that seemed odd but did we jump to the conclusion that the previous owners were abusing their children/ pets or anyone else that inhabited that home no we did not. I have locks on all of the doors in my house- I also have the keys to these doors sitting on the top of the door frame so that I can unlock the door. I am now thinking of installing knobs with locks on the outside to the closet and pantry door- not to lock my child in but keep him out. Infact if you look at it this way turning the knob so that the lock is on the outside it could be safer- the child would not be able to lock the door while in their rooms.
I've placed the childproof doorknob covers on the inside of my children's rooms. My 2 year old has one on his door right now. It's not to punish and if he calls me into his room I go immediately but it gives me peace of mind that at night he will not get up and wander the house possibly falling down the stairs or climbing onto something he shouldn't. I did the same with my other two children at this age, they are now 7 and 5 and very well adjusted. No damage done :-)!
EDIT: To those of you who seem upset by this I just have to clarify one thing. I won't speak for everyone but in my case I am talking about a 23 month old. Some of you probably have a child this age still in a crib. What is the difference between placing a child in a crib that they cannot get out of and placing them in a bedroom that they cannot get out of? In case of fire I still have to go get my child from his room like I would if he were in a crib. Also, in cases of fire most children sleep through fire alarms and if they do wake up and know that something is wrong they get scared and hide. A child this age is not going to find their way outside (he couldn't unlock the deadbolt from the front door even if he wanted to). If we are talking about older children who could save themselves in case of emergency or who need to use the bathroom at night, then yes I agree it seems extreme unless there is mental illness and serious safety issues. In the case of a little one, it's no different then being stuck in a crib.
Parents will often do this for kids who will not stay in their own beds at night or during naptimes. THere may be other issues you do not know about such as autism or mental illness that cause the need for the doors to lock from the outside.
Absolutly not ok:that is strange But let me tell you we did the same thing for my lil girls room but we cut her door in half then turned the locks around so that we could lock it at night from the outside only because we live in a two story house my room dwn stairs and my two childrens rooms are up stairs
and we did not want her to get out at night and fall dwn the stairs two totally difrent reasons i'm sure. and did you get it the door is a half door
In response to your concern; I would be worried about those children. It is unfortunate that there are parents who discipline children in odd fashions. However, what if there is a fire and or something that would cause these children to need to leave the home in an emergency. What then? Perhaps you should contact a local CPS office and just mention it. Maybe the people, who placed these locks, need a little coaching on how to discipline their children without caging them in rooms. Please take a moment and reflect on how those children feel and what can they possibly do to be punished in that manner. Please help a child who may not be able to speak for them selves.
Okay, hold up on the CPS. Why does this family feel this is necessary? I have heard of kids being sleepwalkers and that can be very dangerous thus reversing the locks can assure safety as well as some sleep. Is there some mental illness or extremely rebellious teen that sometimes it is for their safety? There could be a number of reasons. Are their children happy, functioning kids? You didn't mention how old they were. What are the parents like? I know some have said this is "inhumane", but when ALL has been tried, what wouldn't you do to keep your children from harm? I think before CPS is called or an ill judgement is made, best to get the facts.
Oh, no I have not had to reverse locks but, close. Having a child with sometimes dangerous mental health issues, I have an idea of what kind of situation might warrant doing that.
I used to lock my kids in at night. I did this for their safety, not as a punishment or cruelty thing. My daughter was 13 months when she began climbing out of her crib. so we removed the crib and put her in a toddler bed. She is what I call an extreme climber. She was walking at 8 months old and gave me a heart attack at 10 months by climbing up onto the dining room table. At that age she couldn't understand the apparent danger. I tried using a baby gate in her door way, but she climbed it and it was one that was about 4 ft. high!!! She stacked toys and such on her side to get over it. Smart booger. When she was 15 months old, I had my son. So now I had a newborn in a crib in the room next to her room and I was on the other end of the house. My biggest fear was her getting out of her room and climbing into his crib with him and hurting him or smothering him by accident of course! She would have been physically able to do so, but she didn't have the mental capacity to understand not to do it. So I locked her door and his at night. I had a monitor mounted outside their doors and I could hear them if they made any noise or cried out in distress, but I could sleep soundly otherwise. I was nervous about her having access to areas she normally wouldn't if we just trusted her not to get up at night. Now, as for a fire, well firemen will tell you that the safest thing is to have the doors completely closed at night. If you smell smoke then you are to test your door for heat before opening. Kids that age panic and run into the fire to get to mom & dad. Older ones age 5 or so tend to hide under their beds and in their closets. These are where firemen look first. So, I figured if I had them locked in, I was helping them stay safe unless the fire started in their room, but again I don't know if at that age she would have known what to do and a newborn certainly couldn't do anything. They can't get out of the house now if there is a fire due to locks, so I teach them to stay in their rooms with doors closed and have taught them the safe area to wait for help. anyway, once we started potty training, I placed a portable potty in her room beside her bed. THis worked for us and she knew if she called me I would be there. As they got older and more capable, well we certainly took the locks off. My son had a stint of sleep running and we started locking his door again once he was about 2.5 years old, but again he knew he could call out & I could hear him on the monitor. While sleeping he took out of his room running full speed through hall way, living room dining room and straight into our bedroom and straight into my end table. almost knocked himself out, but did give himself a bloody nose and he didn't even know how he had got into our room. Once potty trained though we took the lock off and he is now 3.5 and every now again ends up in a strange place, but so far no more injuries. I do have chain locks on both front & back doors that are up about 6 ft high and they have stopped him from going outside at night! He was asleep again. So, I say do it if it works for your family and it isn't causing anyone any distress. We never used it as a means of discipline. Each family and home is different and each child and their ages at the time bring challenges that we all have to get creative to successfully get through them. I had to laugh at this because when I would go on playdates and I would see moms with lighted candles on counters in bathroom with small children in the house, I was just appalled and yet lots of people seem to be ok with it even though that just seems unbelievably dangerous to me. Parents with no cars seats for 3 & 4 year olds.... The safety spectrum is really interesting. Hope this helps you see this particular thing in a different light.
I have heard of it as obviously many of the other posters have. I have been thinking of how to handle the issue myself bc you do worry once your little one transitions to a bed they can get out of. I am thinking of putting locks up high on all the doors that lead out of the house, the outside of the bathroom door and perhaps on my new baby's door so my two year old can't get out of the house at night should he wake so he and can't go try and get his new baby brother out of the crib etc. I am glad I read the post about the butcher knife I think I will find a way to get the knife block off my counter and put covers on the knobs of my stove. We just transitioned him to big boy bed and there is so much to think of!! I don't think I will lock him in his room though because I would hate to think of him being trapped in a fire, especially if it somehow started in his room and we didn't hear him for any reason.
I doubt it was really used for any form of real punishment, but that is my opinion. I don't believe you should lock your child in at night though, now that sounds silly. For me the only reason I haven't turned the lock on my children's bedroom doors out is because they are simple to unlock from the outside with out doing so. Every time my four year old daughter gets upset (daily) she runs into her room and locks it. She has no idea how I open it. I'm sure the previous family just didn't want the kids to lock themselves in their room.
Just another perspective. We turned my sons door lock around because he had locked himself in once and I was afraid he'd do it again. We used the door knob protectors when he was real little but he figured those out when he was 4 or 5.
I think I may have locked him in once for a time out (extreme fit throwing and door slamming) but I never lock his door at night.
I had to do that for safety reasons when my younger daughter was about 1 1/2-2 yrs old. she could climb out of her crib at about 14 mo old, so we put her in a toddler bed so she wouldn't fall trying to climb out of the crib. well, even though her bedroom door was right next to mine, I slept with my door open, I had a baby monitor in her room still, and I'm a very light sleeper, she could still manage to get up so quietly in the morning that I would not hear her and she would get into EVERYTHING. one morning, I woke up and found her in the kitchen surrounded by broken eggs all over the floor! well I couldn't have her getting up like that every morning, so I turned her knob around and locked her in at night. when she woke up, she'd try to get out and bang on the door so I'd hear her and wake up.
now, other than a situation like that, I don't see any reason to lock your kids in their rooms, especially if they were older kids.
I use a safety gate. That way I can see in and they can see out and call to me.
(this request had the most responses so I had to put my 2 cents in)-
Its Halloween time so I have a ghost story for you!
This is a true story! My sister-in-law lives in an old house, and on more than one occasion has had some odd things happen. She has seen the ghost its a little boy, my father-in-law saw it at one point too, and he is a God fearing man,not believing in ghost. Any way!
So my nephew at age 4 was being a crazy kid, just not listening (he has ADD) sis couldn't handle him, sent him to his room, he keep getting out, so she locked it (the hook kind, was there when they moved it.) She sat on the couch for maybe 10min and the door started shaking and the lock came unhooked, so she gets up to yell at kid again, he is asleep on bed, like out deep sleep. And didn't hear it. So she was completely freaked out! and she got a screwdriver and took the lock off! She got the feeling the kid was locked in a lot, and maybe that used to be his room.
I think it is a fire hazard. Children should never be locked in, when the parent isn't readily available to know what's going on. When you are alseep, you may not know your child needs you( If they are sick or choking) and if the fire doesn't wake you, what if your child died in that fire, and you survived..I can't even imagine how I would live with myself. I had teenage foster girls that I practically had to stay up all night to keep them out of trouble. but i didn't lock them in, instead I used a monitor in their room, and hoped for the best.One thing that I will say, I bought this house brand new 3 years ago, and the guest bathroom door had the lock backwards, I showed it to the project manager, and got them to turn it around. I think it was a case of a worker who didn't speak/read English or perhaps they thought it would prevent a small child from locking themselves in the bathroom, but I didn't have a small child, and so, it made no sense to me! LOL!
I have never heard of that except a friend of mine had an outside lock installed on her baby daughter's door because it was right at the top the stairs and she was scared her daughter would crawl out of the crib and fall down the stairs. As soon as her daughter was old enough, they didn't lock the door anymore. There was no way to install a baby gate at the top, so a lock was the only answer. But 3 locks? I feel that is extreme. I don't think it's "common" practice. Maybe it depends on the age and behavior of the children.
I'm with you E., I have never heard of such a thing. our kids bedrooms have no locks at all on them. That just seems wrong to me.
I have heard of people reversing the locks. I think it is really strange. I have spent time holding the door for a 10 minute span when my daughter was in time out, but she learned that she could not open the door without consequences. She no longer tries, she does her time out and comes out sweet. I know of a mom that locks her kids in there rooms because they no longer want to take naps and she wants "me" time. She said that she locks them in for 3 hours, I could not believe my ears. So, I understand your thoughts. Have a great day.
I had to do the same thing with one of mine. When he was 2 1/2, we had another baby. The first morning that he figured out how to climb out of his crib, we found him in his sister's crib...his 2 week old sister's crib. And, as if that wasn't bad enough...when we went downstairs, we found a chair pushed to the counter, and my largest butcher knife pulled halfway out of the butcher block. Thank the Lord Almighty in Heaven, he apparently wasn't tall enough to pull the knife up any further. There were other things out of place, too. But between the knife and the baby...we knew we had to do something, so I switched his doorknob with the bathroom doorknob, with the lock on the hall side. I felt pretty bad about it...not something I ever planned to do. But parenting is all about doing what has to be done to care for & protect your little ones. And in any case of emergency, both of my kids were "trapped" in a crib anyway...it's not like the lock on the door was keeping them from safety. I was going to be their source of rescue anyway. So I found it better to be able to sleep at night without worrying about my child accidentally killing himself or his sister. You do what ya gotta do!!
I'm sure there are cases of locking kids in a room that are unacceptable...but I also think there are times that call for extreme measures. Like when they talk back or disrupt my bon-bon eatin' time....HAHAHA...JUST KIDDING, I PROMISE!!!!
I have to say that everyone really shouldn't jump to conclusions. Just because the locks are on the outside of the door doesn't mean that they were locked in all the time, or at night, or that they didn't have a monitor in the room watching the children all the time. My oldest daughter's locks are on the outside. In reading "Love & Logic" they suggested it for time-outs. You never leave the outside of the door (so you can hear everything), and you only keep the door closed until they can "come out and be sweet" and we only used it for two tantrums, then didn't need it anymore. So I had the door locked from the outside for probably a total of 15 minutes all told. Well, I'm too lazy to turn the locks around. We certainly NEVER used them from the inside. I'm sorry to add more comments to an already full response list, but it really may be something completely benign.
I have not heard of this before. I can see a point of turning them the other way cause of locking themselves in the room or locking parents out of the room. If it was to lock them in for other reasons I don't agree.
Common? Seriously? That's not "common" in my house. No way! If the goal is to keep your kids in their rooms at night, seems like their are much more humane ways of teaching that than locking your kids in their rooms.
i am with you on this...it just dosent seem right. all i can think about is fire and how would they escape? window i suppose. locking doors sounds kinda bad. i would call the child protective services and ask them. truly it sounds like the parents are lazy and dont want to train there kids to stay in there rooms.
I wasn't keen on the idea of locking my little boy in his room when I first thought about it, but when we moved him to a toddler bed and he continually left not only his bed but also his room, we placed a child-proof door knob protector on the inside of his bedroom door--essentially locking him in. It took about two days for him to realize he was no longer allowed to leave the room at night, and now I feel like we could probably take the protector off--but with a baby monitor in his room, I don't feel like we're being horrible parents. We know when he really needs us, and I still go in to him when he cries at night. It was basically just a training mechanism, and we will eventually take it off the door knob.
Like you, I don't know of any reason to lock in an older child. As a child myself, my parents wouldn't even allow us to close our doors at night--so they could hear us if we called out and needed them.
I just cannot imagine what kind of parent would do that!
I have 5 children and can not imagine warranting a lock for any reason other than if there is a serious "problem" with a child with a disability of some sort....This situation would bother me too. On three doors is really unusual. I am not here to judge in any fashion, but NEVER have I locked any of my children in a room, EVER. None of my doors have locks except my bedroom and that is for my use and privacy. Unfortunately, knowing what I know about people and where I work, I have heard CRAZY stories that I can not even possibly imagine about what people think is okay to do to their children. It makes me want to cry! I understand your concern, but I would have to change the door knobs to regular ones ASAP!
Just my two cents.....
If the lock is on the outside of the room is because some small children lock the door and then they can't unlock the door. Then it takes hours using various methods to unassembly the door lock to get the crying child out of his/her locked room. This happen to me when my children were little. My mom babysit one day and my stepdaughter, 4 yrs old, lock herself in the bathroom and could not figure out how to turn the lock to get herself out. My mom was in such a panic, because this has never happen before in her entire life.
I've never heard of "locking the kids in" but I know we had a few doors like that. However, it was because some of our children were small and they could lock themselves in the room and not get out. They would panic, so we switched it around and the kids couldn't lock themselves in the room anymore. Also it prevents the older children from "trying" to lock themselves in the room. Of course we're the type of parents that would take the door completely off, if our teen ever tried that. So that's a new one for me, I've never heard of that :)
We have put locks on the outside of two of our bedroom doors as they are not baby friendly. We lock them when we are not in them so the little ones don't go in and pull daddy's computer to the floor or dig through our house guest's cold medication. They are not left unsupervised for long periods or anything but even when you get up from making train tracks and run to the little girl's room, you will be amazed at what they can get into. It may not have been to lock them in but out.
Of course, the kids' rooms are baby safe so we do not have locks on those but my son has been able to open doors since he was able to push something close enough to stand on. It was horrifying at 11 months to have him defeat the safety handles that spin around the knob to the bathroom door! Just wanted to share that there are other reasons for those locks and we do not lock them in...even if it would be soooo much easier. ;^) Just kidding.
After switching to a big girl bed, I found my 23 mth old downstairs in the kitchen on top of a chair "petting" the fish at 3 a.m. one night and letting the dog outside another night. A lock went on her door (she removed the child lock). We only used it for about 2 1/2 mths, but it was much safer than the alternative.
My friend had to turn her son's door around like that, it was not to lock him in though.....it was to keep him from locking her out. He was 3 or 4yrs old and was infatuated w/ locking his bedroom door. He was on the second floor and she had no way to get in there to him. Instead of buying new door knobs she simply reversed the knobs. It solved them problem for a while until he fingured out how to lock himself in from the outside...but it was better than her not being able to get to him and him in a panic and not being able to unlock the door because he was so scared.
I have a friend who does it and she is a great parent. People don't usually talk about locking their kids in their rooms and I doubt it's that common. That's probably why you have not heard of it. I don't think it's something I would do to my kids, but you never know.
Sorry- I think it is a terrible practice. Never in a million years would I lock a kid in any room, at any age. It isn't safe. And I don't know how you explain it to a kid.
That's crazy. What if there is a fire and your kids can't get out because they were locked in there? I'm sure there are better methods of securing and keeping your children away from endangering themselves. Maybe installing gates by the stairs so they don't fall.
I sympathize with those who have problems with children sleep walking, autism, etc....but this is NOT common practice. If you are worried about your kids wandering into the street at night, but a chain latch high up on any doors to the outside. I only have one child, so I couldn't imagine dealing with 3 all at once, but that is exactly why I have one child. I know how much I can handle and I know my limits. I also get frustraited at times and need "me" time, but that's why my little boy goes to MDO 2x a week. Just my opinion, but I could never ever imagine doing this. What if he has a scarry dream, or needs to go potty, or God forbid a fire or gas leak? I know it's hard to get enough sleep when you have kids, but this isn't a good solution.
I have heard of it, but cannot imagine locking my child in his room, he's 7 now. We don't even shut our doors at night, they are left open. Yes, he does come to our room in the middle of the night on a regular basis, crawls in bed, and right off back to sleep. Actually, I don't think he is even awake when he comes in there. Do I mind him joining us in the middle of the night, no. I figure he won't be doing it when he's 15. I'll be begging for so much as a hug by then!
I must have to admit.. I have never heard of this either. This seems wrong, as a matter of fact I grew up in a house where we weren't allowed to lock our doors from the inside either, not due to disprespect but in case of a house fire, my dad wanted to make sure everyone had a chance to escape (little extreme i know, but great thinking). This doesn't seem right to me and i have two daughters and never have thought about locking them in.
I have heard of locks being used in such cases as my sons friend who would sleep walk. Even in his sleep he could unlock the front door and get out into the streets. This even happened up into his late teens and still to this day.
I think it might be against the law. What if a fire started in that room and the child couldn't get out? That is crazy on so many levels. THERE ARE OTHER WAYS TO GET THE SMAE ANSWERS. THERE ARE ALARMS THAT CAN BE PUT ON DOORS AND WINDOWS IF NEEDED. I WORK WITH THE MENTAL RETARDED PEOPLE AND WE DON'T LOCK THEM IN THEIR ROOMS BECAUSE THEY WILL RUN AWAY OR EAT UP EVERYTHING AND A LOT WORST. PLEASE TRY OTHERS WAYS THEY ARE OUT THERE.
I have taken the knobs off a door to keep them from locking themselves or their sibling in! I don't like it either; sounds fishy...but, I've heard of parents having to do something for a child who keeps escaping out of the house. But all 3 kids? I don't know. It's better than the closet - I've heard of many parents who punish their child by putting them in the closet. Can you imagine? I wouldn't care about being locked in my room, at least I could play.
My husband is a sleepwalker. In fact, he has been known to sleep DRIVE. When he was 16, he got up, got the keys and drove (in his undies) to his girlfriend's house ASLEEP! He's lucky to be alive.
He said everyone needs to quit being so judgemental! A gate would never have stopped him! A lock on the outside of his door DID stop him because he woke up while trying to open it. Please, don't jump to conclusions about people you have never met. Jumping to conclusions about why someone else is wrong is ... Wrong!