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Locking children in their bedrooms

(112 Posts)
Humbertbear Sun 11-Mar-12 10:15:00

My grand- daughter aged 6 has been moved into a beautiful new bedroom. The trouble is its in the loft while mummy and daddy and her 2 siblings sleep on the floor below. She is very insecure up there and has started coming down in the middle of the night. Her parents paid a 'sleep expert' for advice and as a result they are locking her in her room at night. They are adamant that this is the right course of action but also anxious no one knows what they are doing as they are uncomfortable about it. We only found out because our grand- daughter told us. I am very upset about this - they are very caring and over - protective and we usually laugh about their ideas but this seems to have gone too far. Worrying about this has made me I'll. What we can do?

Annobel Sun 11-Mar-12 10:18:16

It sounds downright unsafe to me. The first thing that springs to mind is that the poor child could be trapped in the event of a fire. And the paid a so-called 'expert' for this piece of advice!

MrsJamJam Sun 11-Mar-12 10:18:56

I'd be very worried, as you are. What if there is a fire? Also its very frightening for a young child to feel that she is trapped and unable to get to parents for comfort.

Personally, am a fan of the star chart approach for gently and supportively changing behaviour.

Butternut Sun 11-Mar-12 10:21:51

I'm not surprised she feels insecure, poor love. Definitely a no-no in my book. I agree with annobel.

How old are her siblings?

wotsamashedupjingl Sun 11-Mar-12 10:35:19

It's a dreadful thing to do! You need to protest, and loudly. And continuously, until it stops! shock shock shock

greenmossgiel Sun 11-Mar-12 10:35:51

Why pay a 'sleep expert'? All the wee girl needs is to sleep somewhere else, surely - where she can be with everyone else and not feel isolated. Beautiful room or no, the child won't see it this way. When I was little, I used to sleepwalk. My parents put a hasp on the outside of my bedroom door, so that if I did wander, I wouldn't fall downstairs, when all they really needed to do was put a stair-gate up. I hated the feeling of being 'locked in'. It was really quite frightening. I would have been about 5 or 6, I think, and when I think of it, my parents' habits of smoking in bed could have led to a fire and I would have been locked in! Even thinking about it now makes me come out in a sweat! sad

Carol Sun 11-Mar-12 10:45:00

Better off putting the parents in the loft and lock them in, while she stays with her siblings! Misguided to say the least!

nanachrissy Sun 11-Mar-12 10:49:59

What a stupid, dangerous thing to do to a child. angry

absentgrana Sun 11-Mar-12 10:58:39

All wrong on every count.

glammanana Sun 11-Mar-12 11:03:14

I would have to say something and say it fast !! this is not acceptable behaviour from parents and to think a sleep expert has advised them to do this is unbelievable who makes these people experts I would like to know ? I know it is being alarmist taking of the possibility if fires etc but the fact is that they do happen,how many times have we switched on TV news to be told of children loosing their life as the result of a house fire ? awful and dangerous practice which you should get stopped now.

Annobel Sun 11-Mar-12 11:04:14

And how about if she had friends to sleep over? Girls love sleepovers!

Faye Sun 11-Mar-12 11:16:29

She would be frightened up there on her own. Very thoughtless parents, she is only a little girl, what if she becomes ill or has a nightmare.

artygran Sun 11-Mar-12 11:19:52

An absolute NO on this one. My mother used to do it to me when I was young, and I remember how terrified I was. It damaged any trust and created fear between us and I wondered why anyone who was supposed to love me would do such a thing. This so called "sleep expert" wants a kick up the backside - at the very least!

Pennysue Sun 11-Mar-12 11:29:29

Although I loath to interfere in this case I would. How would her parents deal with their guilt if a fire broke out or she was taken ill. It is tantamount to child abuse. They obviously understand this if they are feeling guilty.

bagitha Sun 11-Mar-12 11:38:24

Hmmmm. If this is true (it beggars belief), the parents are fools and worse than fools.

crimson Sun 11-Mar-12 11:39:19

Good grief. She's insecure [probably scared; I'm scared in my loft if I go there at night] and the solution is to lock her in. Trouble is that I'd be concerned about her getting up in the night and falling down the stairs as well. I'm sure the fire brigade would have something to say about it as well. On the subject of which, when we had a talk at work given by them, they pointed out that, quite often, if a fire breaks out in a house, a small child will go and hide somewhere [would assume they'd look go to their parents, but they don't], so, in the event of a fire parents need to search for cupboards, under beds etc.

harrigran Sun 11-Mar-12 12:14:24

Totally unacceptable and very damaging to the child. I still fear the dark after being shut in the unlit hall as a tot.
This is such an emotive subject that I am worried it is here to prod caring grannies to react.

absentgrana Sun 11-Mar-12 12:20:04

I used to know someone who used to lock her child (contemporary with absentdaughter) in her bedroom at night. It was on the same floor as the parents' bedroom but I still thought it was a dangerous and unkind thing to do. The parents were very loving and caring in every other way.

Greatnan Sun 11-Mar-12 12:21:37

I have always been claustrophobic and if my parents had locked me in a room I would have had a panic attack. Surely they can rejig their sleeping arrangements?

Mishap Sun 11-Mar-12 12:31:19

Surely this has to be a wind-up - I cannot possibly take it seriously!

Greatnan Sun 11-Mar-12 12:37:04

Unfortunately, I think this behaviour is not unusual - my aunt used to tie my baby cousin down in his cot with sheets whilst she went out for the evening. There have been lots of reports of children being left alone and the parents' excuse has been that the children were 'safely' locked in. And we probably only get to hear about the cases where something goes wrong.

Hankipanki Sun 11-Mar-12 12:41:39

If the parents do not want anyone to know about it and feel uncomfortable they know it is wrong. Tell them quite forcefully how you feel humbar

goldengirl Sun 11-Mar-12 14:58:06

It makes me feel sick. Poor little child. And the fact that the parents 'feel uncomfortable' makes me ask why the heck are they doing it? The expert sounds a charlatan to even suggest this. It must be a wind up surely.

Pennysue Sun 11-Mar-12 15:24:02

My Son was a firefighter, until one incident to many and he had to get out or have a breakdown.

He confirms that a child will hide - under beds, in cupboards in a toy chest, anywhere where they cannot see the fire. It is heart breaking for them to bring out any dead from a house fire, but a child is the worst. I still reckon this constitutes child abuse and should be stopped asap.

On a lighter note ! my son did go back into one house and get a pair of hamsters and Buzz Light year! The little ones thought he was a hero - he assured me he was in no danger!

glammanana Sun 11-Mar-12 16:29:57

We all seem to be of the same opinion here girls,where is the OP for an update of her thoughts on our opinions.?