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As a baby, my mum routinely tied me to the cot...

(73 Posts)
Sceptredsmile Sat 04-Jun-16 17:27:31

She would do it with those crepe bandages and tie my legs to the bars so I couldn't get out. I remember it clearly. I'm a bit shocked at myself that I've managed to reach 45 without ever considering this before. What it meant for me as a child at the time? How my need for nurture, security and reassurance wasn't met? Now I wonder, what does it say about her at the time and what happened in her life for her to consider that behaviour an appropriate response to a child who gets out of bed? Does this shock you?

For what it's worth, I cut her off a decade a go but she has recently written to me..

NeedACleverNN Sat 04-Jun-16 17:32:29

Does this shock you?

Yes it does flowers

FurryWalls Sat 04-Jun-16 17:34:47


oabiti Sat 04-Jun-16 17:49:33

OP, yes, it does shock me.


NellWilsonsWhiteHair Sat 04-Jun-16 17:51:04

Awful. And yes, shocking. flowers

originalmavis Sat 04-Jun-16 17:54:14

You must've been bigger than a baby though - a toddler maybe? Bloody hell fire.

RupertPupkin Sat 04-Jun-16 17:58:27

Yes, it's utterly horrible. Do you remember this or did she tell you? Do you have siblings?


Quietattheback Sat 04-Jun-16 18:02:32

Yes it is shocking, how traumatic for you. Was she abusive/neglectful in any other ways?

AddictedToCoYo Sat 04-Jun-16 18:03:09

Are you sure you remember it or have you just been told by someone? It's highly unlikely that you would have a memory of this if you were younger than about 3, but it goes without saying that it is dreadfully dangerous and totally wrong.

GretchenBeckett Sat 04-Jun-16 18:07:21

Sweetheart that is just awful flowers

AuldYow Sat 04-Jun-16 18:13:51

shock I know things were different back in the day but that is truly shocking!

'Hmm I know if I tie my baby to the cot, she won't be able to move' said no half decent mother ever.

flowers for you

RubbishMantra Sat 04-Jun-16 18:27:24

Bloody Hell OP, that's awful.

Are you in therapy, which have brought these memories to the forefront?

How distressing. flowers

firestoned Sat 04-Jun-16 18:27:26

Unless we make a conscious effort, we usually treat our babies, how we have been treated. So no, this is not okay, but maybe how she was treated herself?

BendydickCuminsnatch Sat 04-Jun-16 18:28:28

Wow, that's terrible! Poor you. Not normal! flowers

gonetoseeamanaboutadog Sat 04-Jun-16 18:33:27

It does and it doesn't. 'Tying up' didn't mean then what it does now. We use harnesses to keep children in all sorts of equipment, and many cots have nets over them. While I'm not saying it's ok and would never do it, I can understand why it was felt that a soft impromptu harness arrangement was safer than leaving you free to climb out of your cot at will.

I've read an old 'nanny knows best' book that advocates tying your child to the outside of the cot to sit them on their potty for a few minutes each morning, just to get them used to sitting there. It did mention that this wasn't to be done if the child was distressed by it and the child wasn't to be left alone. Again, I wouldn't do it but just trying to make the point that different cultures and different eras are shocked by different things. You must have had many things to feel very shocked about to now have no contact with your mum, but this particular thing may not have been meant in the way it appears to you now.

gonetoseeamanaboutadog Sat 04-Jun-16 18:34:06

I think it might be significant that a very soft material was used and not anything that would rub your skin.

HazelBite Sat 04-Jun-16 18:37:43

Are you sure you didn't have dislocated hips as a small child as I remember (from my childhood) this being part of the treatment , at night, for a neighbour's child.

ZippyNeedsFeeding Sat 04-Jun-16 18:37:56

that is shocking, but maybe at that time it wasn't so very strange. When my oldest child was a toddler, someone gave me a book about potty training, written by a person called Nanny Smith. She advocated potty training from as soon as the child could sit up, and advised mothers (70's-ish book, clearly only thinking mothers should be caring for infants) to tie the babies onto the potty, using bandages through the bars of a playpen.

I suppose there is a chance that she wanted to make sure you couldn't harm yourself by climbing out of the cot. Or she could be a loon, I've no idea (although I can make an educated guess!).

MsBojangles Sat 04-Jun-16 18:38:19

How can you remember being a baby?

Scaredycat3000 Sat 04-Jun-16 18:39:38

Just for some context my Dad was tied to his potty and table leg. That would have been in the early 50's. GM and older Aunt used to laugh about it. When my Mum found out (same age as Dad) she was horrified.
So not even normal 20 years earlier.
OP flowers

shovetheholly Sat 04-Jun-16 18:43:05

The fact that you cut her off a decade ago suggests that this goes much deeper than a case of very, very old-fashioned parenting.

I'm so sorry you've had to go through this. Everyone deserves a loving family - sadly, some people don't get that. If you haven't already explored counselling, it can be helpful in dealing with the feelings of upset and anger and powerlessness. flowers

AndNowItsSeven Sat 04-Jun-16 18:43:15

Are you sure it wasn't some innocent explanation. Who has told you this because it's not possible you could remember yourself as a baby.

BoatyMcBoat Sat 04-Jun-16 18:44:57

I think it wasn't that unusual back then; I grew up in the 60s and people just weren't so worried about that sort of thing. I can imagine that if your mum was seriously worried about you climbing out of the cot, wandering about the house at night when she's asleep, that someone would suggest tieing you in, and there would be few raised eyebrows.

It depends very much on general attitude and behaviour, really. From the rest of your post, it doesn't sound like she was a kind and loving mother.

What was your dad like?

Becky546 Sat 04-Jun-16 18:46:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TaintForTheLikesOfWe Sat 04-Jun-16 18:46:55

I remember wearing nappies. I have very early memories and I'm an old giffer now grin there is every chance you remember this OP.

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