Babyproofing advice needed

Aaron has finally learned how to climb stairs. However, he cannot climb down them, and proved that (as well as the laws of gravity) by falling down six or seven of them. He’s fine, with two knots on his forehead and a sore tongue from biting it.

So, my question is this: Is there a way to safely block off the stairs? Airman put a baby gate across the stairs, but the bottom two don’t have a second wall, so a gate won’t work.


I can’t quite picture what you are describing, but could you put a gate across at the lowest point in the stairway where there is a wall across? Thus leaving only two stairs to climb up or down?

If that won’t work there is at least one “system” of gates that is bought modularly called Configuregate or something close to that. You can sort of create a corral of gate pieces. Check the Perfectly Safe catalog or the The Right Start catalog

For a more slapdash approach, we have at various times had chairs on their sides and basketball hoops on their sides and piles of pillows blocking access to the bottom of a stairway. This works until the determined baby learns to climb over the obstacle. It can buy you a few weeks while waiting for the expensive system to arrive.

A person got on my bad side, I unloaded a steer on his apartment doorstep and guided it up to his third floor apartment. The ensuing confusion (cows will not go down stairs)exhilirated me as I watched from across the street…

The other thing you can do is teach him how to go down fanny bumper. When you need to go downstairs both of you sit down a bit back from the top step (so he doesn’t fall forward if he sits down a tad ungracefully), scoot forward on your rears, then slide down onto the next step, then scoot and slide all the way down. My grandmother taught seven kids to go down stairs that way, and my mom taught three and we all survived with minimal brain damage. :wink: While this won’t solve the gate problem, it might help him get through toddlerhood with a few less bumps & bruises should he find an open staircase.:slight_smile:

I did find a rectangular box that fit across the bottom step. It’s enough that it’ll stop Aaron, but we can still go over it or around it. That’ll buy us time to get a permanent solution.


My retarded sense of levity was interjected into a thread where it did not belong. Try a Black rug that covers two or three stairs, don’t ask. The human mind in a person with Alzheimers functions similarly to a two year old. Instincts rule.

Don’t worry about it.

Aaron is pretty smart for a fourteen-month-old. We’ve tried something similar for a different problem, but he saw through it pretty quickly. His main problem is he’s too brave and adventurous for his own good. He will try anything once, and if it works out for him, he’ll keep doing it.

As for the damage to his body, he’s got some bruising on his face, but nothing more serious. We kept a close eye on him last night, and he was himself till bedtime. While he was asleep, we went into his room a few times to check up on him. He roused easily, then went back to sleep. So there’s no worry about lasting neurological damage. His face is pretty sore, though.


We used one of those configure gate things. And it worked really well. We have the same type of stairway you describe.

The other option is to gate several stairs up. Its a little difficult to get the gate to swing out while walking up stairs, but the gates are a lot cheaper - and Aaron probably won’t hurt himself too bad doing a three step tumble.

We’re considering a gate with permanent hardware that attaches to the wall. These lock, but a grownup can swing it open. My cousin has these at the top and bottom of her stairs, and it seemed to work out pretty well.


Aw, c’mon - no one has offered the ultimate answer: Duct Tape!!

We didn’t have stairs when ours was a baby, but I recall my mother teaching my youngest sisters to come down the stairs using the butt method. While the ideal is that he’d never try to go on the stairs again (hah!), the second best would be to teach him to do it safely. But with some kids, curiosity and determination will defeat most baby-proofing attempts. So I go back to my original suggestion: Duct tape. :smiley:

He’s gonna wear you to a frazzle - good luck!

Most of ours attach “permanently” into the wall - our kids would knock the other stuff down. The best type is a U gate.

I guess it’s too late for a vasectomy…

This isn’t the Pit, so I’ll keep it clean.

Your remark was insensitive, to say the least.


Perhaps you could see if it was too late for an apology?:rolleyes:

Sorry, sorry, sorry. I was responding to the thread title (“babyproofing”) in my usual wiseass way. No offense intended. Dang, this is the second time in a few days where a smilie would have been advisable. I have nothing against kids and have four of my own and three grandkids. Peace, please. ::insert ingratiating smilie here::