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AIBU to think my friend should not leave her toddlers alone in the bath?

(71 Posts)
sunshiney Mon 10-Aug-09 20:25:13

My friend (of many years) is quite open about the fact that she will put her two ds's in the bath together, then go out of the bathroom to tidy the bedrooms and generally potter about. Her elder boy is 3 in October, the younger is 14 months.
She says she keeps popping in and out of the bathroom every few minutes.

I said to her I didn't think this was right, i think she's taking a big risk, especially with her younger boy. What if there was an accident she didn't hear, if it took her a few minutes to come back it could be too late.

She said she thinks it is a safe thing to do.
What says mumsnet?

Am I the only person with a mental block against leaving my toddler in the bath even for a minute?

ilovetochat Mon 10-Aug-09 20:27:10

i think its dangerous! dp has left dd 2.1 alone whilst grabbing a towel and i told him not to do it as it scares me.

TrinityRhinoIsInDetention Mon 10-Aug-09 20:27:27

I have only just started pottering upstairs when dd1 and 2 are in the bath together and they are 9 and 4

dont leave gecko (2)

and I wouldn't leave dd2 (4) on her own

LouMacca Mon 10-Aug-09 20:31:22

YANBU. One of my neighbours left her 4 year old son and her 2 year old son in the bath for only a few minutes. When she returned the older son was pushing her other son's head down into the water obviously not realising how dangerous it was.

Thank god my neighbour did go back in at that time, it makes me shudder to think how that could have ended.

wonderingwondering Mon 10-Aug-09 20:32:59

I leave mine (2 and 4) in the bath together with the door open and me in the bedrooms. I can hear two voices all the time, and I'm a few feet away. Any silences get investigated! And I feel safer as they are in there together. But I am very conscious of time - I suppose the danger is getting distracted and not realising how long a silence has been.

A useful test is to hold your breath as you walk off, and you don't get much done before you need another one! That gives a good sense of how quickly something could happen.

So I am very cautious, but I think it is OK, with slightly older toddlers, when you are on hand. 14 months is a bit young, I think.

luckylady74 Mon 10-Aug-09 20:33:15

I leave my 4 yr old twins alone in the bath whilst I sort stuff in the bedrooms on the same floor- they can swim, they take up most of the bath,they can climb in and out (often do) what could happen to them that I wouldn't hear?
I also leave them in the back garden while I'm in the kitchen-that's probably more dangerous with the trampoline,swings and so on.

CloudDragon Mon 10-Aug-09 20:42:27

I do leave my 2 & 4 year old alone for a minute or two but make them sing to me and if they stop I go straight back in (I sort out the washing in the bathroom then run into the bedrooms while I put it away.

sunshiney Mon 10-Aug-09 20:42:32

luckylady, i don't have experience of 4 year olds (my dd is 2), but would it be possible for one to bang their head, pass out and end up under water? would the other child come and tell you there was an accident. i suppose they would do at that age.

but anyway that would be what would bother me in my friends scenario.

lockets Mon 10-Aug-09 20:42:50

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strongblackcoffee Mon 10-Aug-09 20:45:51

Hmmmm, I leave my two boys alone all the time - they're really young compared to above posts, 21 months and 3.5. But we do live in a small house, I do listen constantly and if it goes quiet am there within seconds.

blush bad mother...

lisad123 Mon 10-Aug-09 20:46:00

I have only just started leaving dd1, aged 6years in the bath while i sort out her sister who is 22months. I would never leave my dd2 alone in the bath, too much of a risk for what? sorting out clothes? no chance

Overmydeadbody Mon 10-Aug-09 20:46:17

I tihnk it is relatively safe, if she's around and in and out every few minutes.

liahgen Mon 10-Aug-09 20:46:40

My 3, 6, 4, 2 bath without me in the room as bathroom is next to the kitchen and it gives me time to prepare dinner or load dishwasher etc. They make enough noise so i'd def notice if something were amiss.

The eldest 2 are at the age where they are constantly telling on each other too so if someone does something remotely unacceptable, i'd know very quickly.

Overmydeadbody Mon 10-Aug-09 20:47:51

I probalby stopped sitting in the bathroom for the whole time by the time DS was 2.5

Now, at 6, he wouldn't want me supervising his baths anyway!

RumourOfAHurricane Mon 10-Aug-09 20:54:52

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pamelat Mon 10-Aug-09 20:58:20

My DD is 18.5 months and DH leaves her to get a towel if he has forgotten, only 5 or 6 seconds but I dont even like that and tell him off. blush

MuppetsMuggle Mon 10-Aug-09 21:02:22

I leave my DD aged 4 we live in a flat so a tad easier and I always make sure she sings or tells a story to her bathroom toys so I can hear her.

I just potter by getting PJ's ready, and general tidy up.

ScarlettCrossbones Mon 10-Aug-09 21:02:31

YANBU. 14 months is def too young. My DD (25mths) slipped backwards under the water just the other week (I was watching, TG).

I will occasionally run to grab a towel or a nappy when they're both in the bath, but am away about 4 secs max!!

shock at those who think they would hear if something was amiss. How can you hear someone drowning fgs???

Absolutely not worth the risk.

SycamoretreeIsFullOfResolve Mon 10-Aug-09 21:02:54

I once got home after work to find DH in the kitchen loading the washing machine. I said where are the kids???

He looks at me, face drops, he realises he's fucked up..."in the bath" he says.

I peg it upstairs..all is thankfully fine but DC's are almost 4 and almost 2..and DS 2 yr is a climber...

He lost his mind for a moment and was worried he hadn't done the washing and didn't want me to be cross with him hmm.

I think it was a retarded thing to do, obviously. However, I often potter out of the bathroom to get towels, pj's etc whilst they're in there - into the bedrooms next door and I can still hear them splashing and killing loving each other.

Once I get DS out I leave DD 4 in there on her own for as long as she wants whilst I get on with stuff. She sings, plays, splashes...I call out to's fine.

edam Mon 10-Aug-09 21:02:58

don't think I'd leave a baby (which is what a 14 month old is) alone with a 3yo. Depends whether her 'pottering' means she's within a few yards of the bathroom, keeping an ear out and popping in to check every couple of minutes. Hope it does!

strongblackcoffee Mon 10-Aug-09 21:04:00

well, if they stop talking I walk straight in there, it takes me about 3 or 4 seconds to get there...

liahgen Mon 10-Aug-09 22:11:43

scarlett I think you'll notice that all of us that leave them have at least 1 older dc in there too, so knowing my own children I know I would know about it if anyone was drowning. None of my young uns like getting water on their faces so the commotion would be enough.

I think tbh most people know how much they can and can't do with their own dc's.

I hav ebeen known to cringe at others doing stuff that I happily let my own do, simply cos I know my own children, I don't know theirs.

lockets Mon 10-Aug-09 22:14:51

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FourArms Mon 10-Aug-09 22:23:47

I now leave my 2 in the bath quite happily. They are 5.5 and 3. I would also leave DS1 alone, but not DS2 by himself. I am upstairs sorting washing or tidying. I wouldn't normally go downstairs, but if I did, it would just be for 30 seconds grabbing the phone or suchlike. My two scream and shout the whole time, so no worries about what is going on. Silences would require investigation as they are usually conspiring to commit naughtiness!

LeonieSoSleepy Mon 10-Aug-09 22:27:24

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