Gates at grandparents house? — The Bump
Toddlers: 12 - 24 Months

Gates at grandparents house?

I have a one year old who is walking pretty fast.   we visit her grandma for the weekend occasionally.  We'll be there this weekend and I worry about the stairs.  Her main floor is open with a big staircase up and down( townhouse).  It has taken a lot of energy to keep her away all day when she was crawling and now I feel like it'll be worse. When we asked about gates she said lets see if something she has works.  She has a big dog so she has like 5 gates but they just lean so they're not safe.  Do I have to get us some good top of the stair gates and install them for real or does anyone know of a good temporary travel solution?  (One side is metal rail And the other is wall)

Re: Gates at grandparents house?

  • Do you stay for the weekend when you visit? If so, I don't think gates are out of the question, but yes, I would offer to buy and install them if your mom doesn't seem interested. A metal rail sounds hard to hook a gate up to though. Not sure if something is made for that set up. If your visit is just a few hours, I would say you can't expect every place you go to be babyproofed and that someone needs to keep a close eye on your LO. For short visits something less sturdy than a gate should deter her long enough to be caught as long as she's supervised. 
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  • In no way is this meant to be snarky but have you thought instead of installing gates at someone else's house to instead teach her to listen and tell her no stairs?  At your house, if you prefer to use gates that's your parental decision but at someone else's house I think its different.  I never did baby gates or cupboard locks.  I just always felt it was important to teach kids to listen plus when we visited other peoples' houses this wasn't an issue.  I can honestly say I had 4 kids in 5 years and I have a very long staircase and I've never had one fall down the staircase.  My kids generally crawled by 5 months and around that time I'd teach them how to crawl up stairs and when they were a bit older I taught them how to property scoot downstairs.  They were all walking by 10 months.  Did it require patience and A LOT of reminders of no stairs- OF COURSE!  And you'll probably spend a few hours the first day doing just that.  But eventually it will pass.
    DianeRog
  • We bought a gate for the top of the grandparents' stairs. We got one of those pressure ones, and it seems to work well. (They have both sides as a metal rail). 

    The thing is, no matter how well your child listens, accidents happen. It's kind of rough on a little kid being in a totally different place anyway (no matter how much they love grandma and grandpa!). And, kids this age are testing limits anyway. You say stop, they take one more step and then stop. You have to put their safety first, and sometimes that means having backup protection for the times they don't listen as well. 

    I think that probably if they have a gate for their dogs, it would work for a toddler as well. 
  • *LrCg* said:
    In no way is this meant to be snarky but have you thought instead of installing gates at someone else's house to instead teach her to listen and tell her no stairs?  At your house, if you prefer to use gates that's your parental decision but at someone else's house I think its different.  I never did baby gates or cupboard locks.  I just always felt it was important to teach kids to listen plus when we visited other peoples' houses this wasn't an issue.  I can honestly say I had 4 kids in 5 years and I have a very long staircase and I've never had one fall down the staircase.  My kids generally crawled by 5 months and around that time I'd teach them how to crawl up stairs and when they were a bit older I taught them how to property scoot downstairs.  They were all walking by 10 months.  Did it require patience and A LOT of reminders of no stairs- OF COURSE!  And you'll probably spend a few hours the first day doing just that.  But eventually it will pass.
    This is very unrealistic for a 1 year old and would take CONSTANT supervision and teaching. Not everyone has time for that. Gates are a realistic solution.
    whataboutscienceauntieembabes
  • Squirtgun said:
    We bought a gate for the top of the grandparents' stairs. We got one of those pressure ones, and it seems to work well. (They have both sides as a metal rail). 

    The thing is, no matter how well your child listens, accidents happen. It's kind of rough on a little kid being in a totally different place anyway (no matter how much they love grandma and grandpa!). And, kids this age are testing limits anyway. You say stop, they take one more step and then stop. You have to put their safety first, and sometimes that means having backup protection for the times they don't listen as well. 

    I think that probably if they have a gate for their dogs, it would work for a toddler as well. 

    This. All of this.
    auntieembabes
  • We have gates and my daughter did still once fall down the stairs with me right there but just not quick enough to catch her. She was fine, but it was one of the scariest experiences of my life. I was sure she would break her neck or be unconscious. That being said, you can only do so much at someone else's house, but I think gates at your own house are necessary for mom's sanity.
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  • Hey everyone, thanks for the advice!  I was able to set up an area of the main floor with a leaning gate between an opening that leads to the stairs so that she would have to walk around a small wall of the kitchen to get to the stairs.  It worked ok, but I will still be happy to go home tonight.  
    *LrCg*  We don't actually have stairs in our apartment but I did take every opportunity to tell her not to climb the stairs and I showed her on some little stairs how to go down backwards.  I feel like when we come here I just get very drained spending so many hours a day keeping her away from things.  Making a safe play area helps me relax.  Also, people offer to watch her while we're here and I don't have as much confidence in them.  
    We do come here a fair amount and always stay here instead of with other family.  We bring so much stuff already (pack n play, high chair, etc...) that buying a gate ourselves would probably not happen.  She wouldn't care at all about the cost, its more that my husband feels weird asking her to go to any trouble and have something installed in her wall, but I was noticing that a lot of people's grandmas have some baby stuff at their place and it seemed reasonable.  
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