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use of cupboard locks for 12 mo old?

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  • use of cupboard locks for 12 mo old?


    Our little sweetie just turned 1 and became mobile w/ crawling. She is our first and i need to do some research on what exactly our discipline style is b/c I dont know ...
    Thus far, we've just baby proofed and we rarely have to redirect her b/c there is nothing she can get into.

    She enjoys opening and closing doors, dog crate doors ... cupboards. Which leads me to my question ...

    i can't figure out if i want to use cupboard locks.
    Do you guys use cupboard locks?

    Is it *that bad* if you dont? do they empty them all the time if you dont ?

    she pulled a few canned goods and pasta boxes out this morning and just had so much fun.

    I've debated on
    * locking them all but 1-2 that she can play in so we dont have to redirect a lot.
    * moving dangerous items or locking just those cupboards
    * leaving them open and redirecting
    * leaving them open (except dangerous ones) and letting her play and explore

    I have no clue!

    Open to any suggestions, resources, articles, books ... LOL I'm all ears!!


  • #2
    Hi Kim,

    When our DD did this, we lived in a very tiny kitchen and didn't have many choices for moving things out of the way. So, we put locks on the cabinets that contained dangerous stuff - we had no where to put our glass plates except in a bottom shelf, so we locked that one. We figured out which drawers she liked the most, and put stuff in those that was safe for her. She used to love opening the drawer of dish towels and pulling them all out. We just decided we didn't care if they were folded or not. She had tons of fun with it!

    Now we're in a bigger house, so we put all cleaning products and glass in high shelves so we don't have to have locks. All the stuff on the bottom is safe. Of course, DD has outgrown this phase and doesn't do it anymore, but we have a new one on the way, and I'm sure it'll be fine.

    For discipline style, the book that helped me the most was Unconditional Parenting. I highly, highly recommend this one!

    Best wishes,


    • #3
      We left ours unlocked for the longest time, which led to CONSTANT redirecting which became very frustrating for my son, and for us as well. About a month ago (my son is 17 months) we finally did a more thorough job of babyproofing, locking all but one "safe" cupboard and drawer, and it has been so much nicer for all of us! My son is a lot less frustrated by something just not opening that he is when we're holding it closed or when we're picking him up and moving him away from it, and we don't have to deal with 400 tantrums a day. In fact, we actually just got three more locks yesterday to deal with the dishwasher and stove which have now become the newest fascination. I'd say go for it!


      • #4
        The only locks we have is under the bathroom sink and the kitchen sink...where the soap and cleaning supplies are. The medicines and glass wear are all high up. The worst my curious 2 yr old does is throw the onions and potatoes out of the cabinet...sometimes taking out a pot and putting legos in it.
        You could do the basic safty locking...then watch your child to see how bothersome it is to you. If it does get to be too much put some on, if not leave them be.


        • #5
          Definately lock up anything dangerous! And don't forget common things that can be bad, like cooking oil or baby oil which is deadly if inhaled.

          Anything else depends on your own comfort level. We have about half of the cabinets locked - the ones opened are things it's OK for him to dig in and pull out. If you don't want it pulled out and played with, lock it up.



          • #6
            We did cupboard locks on most of our cabinets, but DS figured out how to open them when he was 17 month old. He just reaches in, pushes the lock down and opens the cupboard.


            • #7
              We did cupboard locks and now my 8 year old son can't get them open half the time, so we need to remove them hehe. However, we locked up the cabinets with the items we didn't want the kids getting into (breakable, cleaning supplies - even though they are eco-friendly, etc). We did keep one cabinet in the kitchen completely filled with items the kids could play with - and they weren't toys or kid-specific items but instead pots and pans, lids, etc that weren't going to break our cause undue harm to the wee ones.

              If we had more space to put everything up high, then we could have foregone the locks, but that wasn't possible.


              • #8
                Thanks for the Feedback everyone - that is exactly what I was looking for!
                She has so much fun playing in some safe cabinets. I have several folks IRL saying she needs boundaries, discipline, etc so I almost just needed to hear "it's okay to leave them unlocked if you want to".
                I didnt know if this was a phase or if i was going to create that perverbial child that goes to visit other people and gets in all their stuff ...

                Anna - i kind of wondered if leaving them unlocked would cause frustration for all involved as well so thanks for posting!

                I think we're gonna try redirecting from a couple, a couple she can have and dangerous ones locked and see how that suits everyone.
                Thanks for the Veggie-Oil tip.

                Yesterday it was so cute - she took some canned foods out of the cupboard, played w/ them and then PUT THEM BACK IN ... they're still stacked crooked ... so cute!

                My copy of Unconditional Parenting should be into my local library this week Looking forward to reading it!


                • #9
                  Originally posted by KaitlynsMamma View Post
                  I have several folks IRL saying she needs boundaries, discipline, etc
                  well, they're right, she DOES need DISCIPLINE! however, discipline means to teach. it's a huge misconception that AP parents don't discipline. in fact, it's all we do. every moment is an opportunity for learning, not just for your child, but for you. discipline does not equal punishment!


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by KaitlynsMamma View Post
                    Yesterday it was so cute - she took some canned foods out of the cupboard, played w/ them and then PUT THEM BACK IN ... they're still stacked crooked ... so cute!
                    This is so cute! Our daughter loved putting stuff back in, too. She definitely wasn't out to make a mess. She just wanted to explore and do what we did We loved our messy dish towel drawer, too.