Are you an open or a closed door family?

Filed under: Activities: Babies, Feeding & Sleeping

I grew up in a house where we slept with the doors open at night. The only time I ever wondered if this was a good idea was when we had Fire Safety Day at school and the firefighters told us it was best to sleep with the door closed to protect against a raging fire. On those nights I would lie in my bed as I stared at the open doorway. Sometimes I would think about closing the door but I felt comforted by the small corner of warm, yellow light that I could see on my ceiling. As long I could see that light, I knew that my parents were in the house, likely conversing about their days, and that I was safe.

My children are quite the opposite; they insist on sleeping with their bedroom doors closed. I have no memory of when this became a policy. It likely has its roots in my efforts to get them out of the family bed and into their own beds in a separate room. Whatever the case, they absolutely cannot sleep until that door is 100% closed. Now this would not be an issue except for the fact that the children and I now live with my mother while she heals from my father's death earlier this summer. Not only is she used to open doors at night, her dogs and cats are not used to encountering a piece of wood blocking their paths from wherever it was they were going.

As a compromise we shut the doors as the children are falling asleep and then open them enough so that the animals can travel to and fro during the night hours. This is not an issue until the early morning hours when my mother rises and begins her daily routine. Although the children can slumber through her puttering, I have recently discovered that I am no longer an open door sleeper. I, too, cannot sleep unless that door is closed. But then the dogs need to get up and potty, the cat wants breakfast....

What about your family? Do you have these door issues? Are you losing sleep over it?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.