Time to Stop Using the Baby Monitor

When Do You Turn Off the Baby Monitor For Good?

We're excited to share this post from our partners at BabyCenter! Every week, we will be bringing you the best parenting and lifestyle stories from the experts at BabyCenter, including this post from Kristina Sauerwein about outgrowing the baby monitor.


My friend posed this question on Facebook: “At what age did you detach yourself from the monitor with your child?” She was wondering if she should get rid of the baby monitor for her 4-year-old son who “sleeps with his door open…(and has been) talking/yelling in his sleep soooo much lately, (she) was up almost hourly to check on him.”

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I left a comment telling her to retire the baby monitor. Honestly, I never really used our baby monitor much. My husband and I slept upstairs on the same floor as our kids, and I am the type of sleeper who would wake up if one of my baby’s coughed loudly. A monitor by my bedside would have revved my mind and kept me awake. Every little stir would have me evaluating my baby’s well-being and I would spiraled into an motherhood-OCD-worrywart hell.

Besides, as one mom said in my friend’s Facebook comments, if a baby’s stirs or cries are important enough, you’ll know.

That said, we did place a baby monitor in our basement since our baby slept two floors up. But even then, I could hear important cries sans monitor.

As for a video monitor, that would’ve wired me to no end so I never bothered. My friend said she used to watch it so obsessively, her dreams would be about her baby on the video monitor. Another friend said she watched the video monitor until she noticed her toddler boy could only get to sleep if he played with his private part and she just didn’t want to know that.

I will say there are two things I liked about the auditory baby monitor:

  • Once my husband and I heard another couple in our so-called perfect town fighting about stupid things such as his overgrown nose hairs and her annoying food-chomping habits. We had no idea who these people were so it was rather amusing and we took it as free entertainment. I know, it was immature and bad of us but it was a train-wreck-we-had-to-watch moment.
  • I never did this but I always wanted to turn the baby monitor on when my husband and his friends played cards, drank beer and watched back-to-back football games. After all the guys left, I’d ask my husband what they all talked about and he’d say “nothing.” Nothing? For six hours? I don’t buy it and so I always threatened to eavesdrop via baby monitor. My husband said all I’d hear is a lot of gas passing.

So tell me: Did you use a baby monitor? What kind? When did you ditch it? Did you ever eavesdrop on anyone or have any funny baby-monitor mishaps?

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Source: Flickr User kona99

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