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to think its irresponsible for my OH to leave our 2 yr old downstairs on his own?

(692 Posts)
YummyMummy1208 Thu 05-Aug-10 09:47:10


I'm so angry with him rite now and generally since our little boy was born cos he just has no clue how to watch him properly but if i ever have a go at him its 'oh shes off again...' and switches off.

Is this just a general 'men' thing??

Thismorning is a prime example, hes been taking over morning duties of late due to me being 7 month pregnant so thismorning he takes DS1 downstairs and then i can hear him saying 'So r u gonna stay downstairs and be a good boy while Daddy has a shower?' now forgive me if im being unreasonable but surely im not the only one here thinking you dont leave a 2.5 yr old downstairs - on his own - while u go upstairs to have a shower??

Whats everyones opinion on this one - Am i being unreasonable to have a go at OH??

PatsyStone Thu 05-Aug-10 10:36:54

What Lynli says about children being unpredictable is spot on. I leave dd in one room while I'm in another for longish periods of time every day, but never out of earshot.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 05-Aug-10 10:39:47


The problem is, that if you've been shrieking at your DH that he's doing things wrong for 2 years, then he won't have learnt his own parenting style, rules and boundries. In 5 years time you will be moaning that he isn't interested in the children, and a lot of that will be because you have told him from word go that he isn't competent as a parent.

LimaCharlie Thu 05-Aug-10 10:39:50

If your house is safe I don't see the problem

MIFLAW Thu 05-Aug-10 10:40:40

I do this every morning and have done since my daughter (now 2.5) was one (though I must admit I rushed my shower a lot more then than I do now.)

I am a man, but I know my wife does the same when it's her turn to do the morning shift.

Our daughter has never come to any harm in this way.

How else do you propose a parent on his/her own has a shower in the morning?

MmeLindt Thu 05-Aug-10 10:44:16

I posted on the thread yesterday. Don't think that if you watch your child like a hawk and never let him/her out of your sights that something like that cannot happen.

The time I came into the kitchen and found DD on the worktop with a massive knife, I had just nipped to the loo. I was at most a minute out of the room. I have absolutely no idea how she managed to drag a chair over and climb up on the worktop in that time but she did.

My DD was up at the very top of climbing frames when she was just a toddler. She never fell off because she knew how far to go and she was always able to get down.

If a child is not allowed to be alone, or climb on a climbing frame with a parent hovering underneath them, then they will never learn how far they can safely go.

IMoveTheStars Thu 05-Aug-10 10:45:05

OP YABU (as I think you may have gathered from the other responses)

How else am I meant to have a shower in the morning? At 2.5yo DS will play happily in his bedroom by himself, while I'm doing something downstairs - is that wrong too? hmm

Honestly.. chill out a bit and stop having a go at your husband!

BornToFolk Thu 05-Aug-10 10:45:22

Children are unpredictable but you can't watch them 24 hours a day until they leave home. You have to teach them to be responsible for their own safety, and part of that is leaving them unsupervised for periods of time.

I don't think leaving a 2.5 year old downstairs is necessarily irresponsible, but as others have said, it really depends on the child.

notyummy Thu 05-Aug-10 10:46:35

Lynli - you cannot watch them every moment of everyday. Sometimes dangerous things can happen; it is fact a life. We mitigate against this by adapting our houses as best we can. However, they do have to start learning cause and effect at some point.

<Disclaimer: For those about to flame me, I do NOT mean leaving a small child in the bath alone/in the house whilst you go the pub. I merely mean in a childproofed environment for 5 minutes.>

And I still think that the OPs DS will have to be left alone for 5 minutes or so very shortly when the new baby is born...when you relaise you have run out of nappies downstairs and baby has pooed over entire outfit and so on etc etc. Do people really take all their other kids round the house with them at all times??

Patsy99 Thu 05-Aug-10 10:49:44

YABU - if you get your house up to a reasonably toddler-proof standard it's fine to leave them unsupervised. In fact I'd actually say it's desirable for their independence and development.

Mind you, once when I left 2 year old DS unsupervised when I was in the shower he poo-ed on the living room carpet and them walked in it. Argh.

LeQueen Thu 05-Aug-10 10:52:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

notquitenormal Thu 05-Aug-10 11:19:12

Depends on how long it takes I suppose.

I wouldn't do it, because even though our house is fairly child proofed, I don't seem to be able to manage a shower in under 15 minutes (I know, it's pathetic.)

DH is no problem. He can be in and out in 4 minutes (takes him longer to do a number 2!) which is fine.

But then, with our DS we don't need to toddler proof. We just need to put Mr Tubmle on and he's guaranteed not to move until it's finished.

YummyMummy1208 Thu 05-Aug-10 11:28:12

I can not actually believe most of the responses iv just read - firstly, the ones saying they feel sorry for my OH - have u even waited for my response as to the safety of my house or asked for any other history of what he has been like for the past 2.5 yrs with DS??

FYI our house isnt very child proof downstairs - there is no stairgate on the kitchen, knives scissors etc in the draws and bleach and other products in the cuboards he has easy access to. OH left the stairgate at the bottom of the stairs open so he could easily walk up with a handfull of toys unable to hold onto the rail which he regularly tries to do - i would say this was fine to trust him on the stairs but less than a month ago he fell down the stairs when being trusted to walk up on his own and so now we are suposed to be a little more cautious!

Its not that i constantly watch him 24/7 cos i dont, i regularly go upstairs and leave him down there to do quick things - empty the potty/do my makeup/ brush teeth etc but as some other sensible people have said, a shower is a bit different as you cant actually hear if anything happens so i would never leave him downstairs - especially as i was just upstairs and he could have just brought him up with him and i would have watched him. it just makes me sick with worry at the thought of him looking after him for a long period of time.

if our house was childproofed - i.e. he couldnt get into the kitchen and the front door was locked as he knows how to get out then fair enuf he wont get into much trouble downstairs but the fact is it isnt.

and regarding the comments about my poor OH, do you think i actually enjoy having to moan at him every single day about his child rearing methods? He acts like a big brother not a father, time after time i have warned him about things for him to ignore me and then i have to watch my DS suffer when hes fell and banged his head or whatever due to OH's bad parenting. Yes i could just let him learn the hard way but y shud my DS have to suffer becos im too scared to speak up when he's obviously doing something wrong??

minxofmancunia Thu 05-Aug-10 11:28:17

YABU, I can't remember when I started leaving dd alone so I could shower but it was younger than this. Peppa Pig dvd on and off I went, nothing dangerous within reach. DS is only 10 so obviously a bit more difficult but if I'm able to I'll be leaving him too when he's a bit older to get stuff done.

I'm lucky in that dd is fairly "sensible" re reckless activities and is brilliant at keeping an eye on her little brother but i can't tell what he'll be like when older, he's already showing signs of being a climber!

minxofmancunia Thu 05-Aug-10 11:28:56

ds is 10 months, not 10!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 05-Aug-10 11:31:43

Well if he's that bad a father that you consider him a danger to you child then leave him and only let him have supervised contact.

MrsFC Thu 05-Aug-10 11:32:35

Why isn't your house child proofed downstairs??


YummyMummy1208 Thu 05-Aug-10 11:35:02

and to answer JarethTheGoblinKing and MIFLAW, i find it pretty easy to have a shower in the morning without leaving him downstairs - either get OH to watch him or if OH isnt about take him upstairs with me so he can play in his room which is safe.

Im not for the whole take the child with you 24/7, just dont leave the child in areas of the house where there is lots of danger!

I totally agree that children need to be able to adventure by themselves and learn their limits which our DS does, just not leaving them out of earsight with allsorts of things within hand reach that he shouldnt touch.

Headbanger Thu 05-Aug-10 11:36:29

"Do you think i actually enjoy having to moan at him every single day about his child rearing methods?"

Uhm. Yes?!

minxofmancunia Thu 05-Aug-10 11:37:19

OP if you're so sure you're right why post in AIBU?? Post in chat or parenting instead, why the outrage when you've asked for peoples opinions?

Re the knives, bleach etc. lock them away or store bleach in the bathroom out of reach which is what we do. Your ds is going to need to learn autonomy and independence at some point, fwiw usually the mothers who complain they never have a minute are the ones who anxiously hover over their dcs constantly, never leaving them alone.

And I'm sure you get frustrated with your hd, we all do but the way you talk about him makes you sound like you;r infantalising him big time. Treat him like a naughty irresponsible child and he'll behave like one. Read up on a bit of transactional analysis critical parent/child stuff if you want to get an insight. It's a trap i've seen lots of my friends fall into and me at times too.

thecatatemygymsuit Thu 05-Aug-10 11:38:22

Yabu. Keep the stairgate on, get locks for the cupboards and keep knives etc out of reach. Hardly rocket science. Many 2 year olds are fine on their own in a relatively safe environment (for the few minutes it takes to have a shower). If your house is safe (as it should be) what on earth are you worried about?
If downstairs is really so hazardous can you not put him in his (presumably safe) bedroom while you shower?

llbeanj Thu 05-Aug-10 11:39:15

seems like you listen to people on here just as much as you listen to your OH.

IMoveTheStars Thu 05-Aug-10 11:39:43

If you'd put in your OP that your downstairs isn't childproofed, and that your child can let himself out the front door, you probably would have got some very different replies.

I leave DS (2.7) in the lounge with the TV on while I shower. It's a childproofed room and he's perfectly safe in there.

Blahrahrah Thu 05-Aug-10 11:40:20

Why not toddler proof your house? Especially with a baby, your ds will e a lot more unsupervised as you are with the baby changing nappies etc. Better to get it done now than with two in the house!

DaisySteiner Thu 05-Aug-10 11:40:42

Why don't you make downstairs safer?! Problem solved.

Love the word 'earsight' by the way. That's a keeper.

YummyMummy1208 Thu 05-Aug-10 11:41:41

MrsFC our house isnt childproofed downstairs becos i have never felt the need for stairgates all over the house as i know how to watch my child without needing this - OH doesnt want to spend money on buying stairgates (i had to buy the 2 we already own) and he's the one who watches DS less and therefore would benefit from buying them.

the safety of our house isnt really under discussion here, it is what it is and OH knows how safe it is and therefore should have acted rite for the situation.which he didnt. as he never does.

i love my OH and the only arguements we ever have now are over his parenting style, we were perfectly fine before starting a family and will be perfectly fine once we get thru this stage in our childrens lives. I was just wanting some NICE support either way, not comments saying they 'feel sorry' for my OH. if you feel like that then dont comment as its not really helpful is it

I personally wouldnt actually be able to concentrate properly whilst having a shower to benefit leaving him downstairs as id always be trying to listen out for him crying.

I was just upstairs awake in bed, y did he not just bring him up?? Simple really.

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