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Old 05-02-2012, 07:43 PM   #31
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

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Seriously? People expect a kid who can't remember not to leave the house for safety to be able to safely leave the house alone* in a fire? I just don't follow that.

*if they're not alone then someone else is there to open the door.
My thoughts exactly. Its not like the kid is home alone.

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Old 05-02-2012, 07:46 PM   #32
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I suggest getting the door alarms. One for her door and one for each of the doors to the outside. I wouldn't advise locking her in her room, how will she go potty? You may need to adjust bedtime too. She may be going to bed too early, and you, too late

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Old 05-02-2012, 07:48 PM   #33
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

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Seriously? People expect a kid who can't remember not to leave the house for safety to be able to safely leave the house alone* in a fire? I just don't follow that.

*if they're not alone then someone else is there to open the door.


I agree!
2 things... if the kid can't get out because of the door knob cover or baby gate..what is the difference if instead they are actually locked in the room. If the kid can't get out of the room because of a baby gate...how are they going to get out in a fire with the baby gate? Secondly, studies have actually shown the majority of kids under 10 do not wake up on their own at night if the smoke detector goes off so an adult would have to get them out in the case of a fire anyway.
If locking the doors is not an option then the only other option I see is for the OP to get up when her DH leaves in the morning as well so that there is an adult up before the kids get up.
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Old 05-02-2012, 07:58 PM   #34
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

Door knob covers don't work here. DFS (3) can get them off no problem. I would, however, not put a door lock on her bedroom. I'd just put them on the exterior doors.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:01 PM   #35
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We had a door knob cover. I am pretty sure dd2 was still wandering out the door at 4 and she is not on spectrum - to the pp who expressed concern. Dd2 is very independent and self-directed. She just had things she wanted to do. Door knob covers are a pita (works on adults almost as well as kids) but made us feel MUCH safer. Have dh lock the door behind him. Have lots of talks with dd about te rules, and get a door knob cover. And maybe hang something jangly from the door as an alarm.

Hope the other stuff works itself out soon!

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Old 05-02-2012, 08:35 PM   #36
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

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I think something that no one has mentioned is that putting a lock on your dd's bedroom door or a gate so that she can't get down would be a fire hazard and unsafe if there were an emergent situation. Even if they were getting out of their rooms too early in the morning, I would never want to lock my kids in their rooms for fear of what might happen if they really needed to get out and couldn't. I would think that maybe the alarm on her bedroom door would be the best so that you know when she is getting up. Maybe also a different clock in her room and work with her on knowing when it is ok for her to come wake you up and when it's too early. Does she have toys, puzzles, books, etc in her room to occupy her quietly in the morning when she wakes up? A sippy cup of water or something? Maybe she is just going to be an early riser. Maybe also you could leave your bedroom door open or even use a baby monitor system so you can hear her better.
i agree w/ the bolded.
my oldest son has autism & is what they call an escape risk & used to do that alot untill i got door alarms. i have on on each of r outside doors & one on each of r kids doors too. there really loud & will deff wake u up when your sleeping if your kids try to escape. here is a pic of one of mine on my living room door.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:44 PM   #37
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

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Really? I have a incredibly large network of children in my life (not from message boards) and the only children I've heard of to do a thing at such an old age are on spectrum. The inability to grasp the extreme danger of leaving the house. Especially with a sibling. Now, younger kids.. Yes.. But 4 is when some children start kinder here. No Ill went with my question, it's just been my experience. I know quite a few autistic children and it's certainly a few of their MO's.
lol - I am nowhere on any spectrums and I used to leave the house every morning at 5 or 6am, walk to our friends house at the end of the street and knock on the door until someone woke up. I'd ask 'can Andrew play' and his mom was so so so so nice in that she told me he was still asleep and I'd go home.

I don't know how often it really was, but I remember doing it and everytime she sees me she reminds me of how I used to do it. I was 3 or 4, because we moved from that neighborhood before I started kindergarten.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:45 PM   #38
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

My DS got out at the age of 4. My kids and I were all taking a nap (bad day, fell asleep nursing my youngest) and I awoke to my friend, a 911 dispatcher, calling to ask if my oldest had been outside playing. My feet didn't touch a single step the whole way down the stairs. As I ran to the door, I passed his snowmobile gear bag (it was the dead of winter, and dark out) with miscellaneous snowmobile gear strewn all over the floor. I ran outside and 2 strangers were walking him up the driveway towards our house. He was fine, thank God. He got the notion to shovel out our mailbox, on a 4-lane highway, in the dead of winter, in the dark, dressed in full snowmobile gear (including helmet and goggles and all black outerwear). "All of those people kept honking their horns, Mommy!"

We had lever locks (all of our exterior doors have lever handles instead of knobs) and door alarms on every door. They were installed when I was pregnant with DS2, almost 2 years before this incident, as my biggest fear was falling asleep with the baby and DS1 getting outside. But, we had stopped setting the alarms (door chimes, with an alarm or chime option) and locking the lever locks - because DS1 KNEW NOT TO EVER OPEN THE DOOR OR GO OUTSIDE without one of us. He is very mature, and very trustworthy, and KNEW BETTER. But, even mature, trustworthy 4-year-olds have lapses in judgement and he very well could have been killed that day. Now the alarms are always on and the levers are always locked. All it takes is one moment. We had a scare, and we were lucky.

If you can't front the bucks for a door alarm, call your local CPS or Child Development Services and ask if they have any. A local social worker who we know called me to ask where we bought ours, because another family was in need of some. They can and will help you out, or at the very least point you in the right direction.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:45 PM   #39
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

My DS got out at the age of 4. My kids and I were all taking a nap (bad day, fell asleep nursing my youngest) and I awoke to my friend, a 911 dispatcher, calling to ask if my oldest had been outside playing. My feet didn't touch a single step the whole way down the stairs. As I ran to the door, I passed his snowmobile gear bag (it was the dead of winter, and dark out) with miscellaneous snowmobile gear strewn all over the floor. I ran outside and 2 strangers were walking him up the driveway towards our house. He was fine, thank God. He got the notion to shovel out our mailbox, on a 4-lane highway, in the dead of winter, in the dark, dressed in full snowmobile gear (including helmet and goggles and all black outerwear). "All of those people kept honking their horns, Mommy!"

We had lever locks (all of our exterior doors have lever handles instead of knobs) and door alarms on every door. They were installed when I was pregnant with DS2, almost 2 years before this incident, as my biggest fear was falling asleep with the baby and DS1 getting outside. But, we had stopped setting the alarms (door chimes, with an alarm or chime option) and locking the lever locks - because DS1 KNEW NOT TO EVER OPEN THE DOOR OR GO OUTSIDE without one of us. He is very mature, and very trustworthy, and KNEW BETTER. But, even mature, trustworthy 4-year-olds have lapses in judgement and he very well could have been killed that day. Now the alarms are always on and the levers are always locked. All it takes is one moment. We had a scare, and we were lucky.

If you can't front the bucks for a door alarm, call your local CPS or Child Development Services and ask if they have any. A local social worker who we know called me to ask where we bought ours, because another family was in need of some. They can and will help you out, or at the very least point you in the right direction.
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:59 PM   #40
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Re: I don't know what to do, 4yo leaving the house

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Seriously? People expect a kid who can't remember not to leave the house for safety to be able to safely leave the house alone* in a fire? I just don't follow that.

*if they're not alone then someone else is there to open the door.
I'm sorry, but I have to say your post and this idea bothers me. There could be multiple reasons why I child might need to get to an adult... what if she was throwing up in the middle of the night or otherwise sick, or if she had an accident in bed, or for some reason there was an emergency and the adults couldn't get to her...

I did my internship at CPS and had a BF that was the chief of a fire department. I guarantee locking kids in rooms would be frowned on by both entities. If it's for a short time during the day for their safety as a consequence (like maybe for a time out with extreme behavior), but at night, if the parents are already not hearing the child get out and leave the house... I'd say it makes it even more dangerous.
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