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When Your Toddler Channels Houdini

3258336711_9e28e67d01_m Submitted by Danny Grubb, Seattle, WA
When you read Harry Houdini’s resume you’ll realize that he is a perfect analogy to the average toddler: Escapologist, Stunt Performer and Actor. In fact I think my 21 month old twins are literally channeling him when they are… um… awake.
They climb on chairs and tables, pull on safety gates and wiggle out of the shoulder straps in their car seats (Yes I know how to strap my children in properly… I think they’re made completely out of ball and socket joints).

I Am Told This Is A Stage

When someone tells you that your child is going through a stage they are lying to you. There are no stages. Your toddler doesn’t magically stop climbing up on things one day… he will just do it less frequently. Never take your eyes off of your thirty pound Houdini… you’ll regret it.
The urge to easily classify toddler behavior has unfortunately led to a lot of oversimplification which is then regurgitated in myriad publications and becomes “fact.” Lets explore another one of these “facts.”

Childproofing Is A Half-Truth

There is no such thing as child proofing; especially when you are dealing with individuals who are possessed by arguably the greatest illusionist the world has ever seen. The best you can hope for is Child Reinforcing. So the next time you meet a child proofing consultant I want you to go up to them and yell in their face “Your career is a lie!”
There is no substitute for parental supervision. The greatest child safety devices were installed in you at birth. They’re called your senses… including the sixth one. How often did you just know something was amiss?
It can be hard to keep an eye on your kid when you’re busy around the house, but it is still your best defense. Check on your child often.


Let us not forget what eventually happened to Houdini. Toddlers play a dangerous game because they don’t know better. Parents can yell, plead and beg to no avail. If you want a an example of what can go wrong in 5 unsupervised minutes check out shitmykidsruined.com – it is a veritable catalog! The thing is that those pictures - although hilarious (terrifying to n00b parents) – are things kids did when they did not hurt themselves.


I’m not going to tell you that there is a magic way to convince your toddlers to stop climbing or that there are Child Reinforcing products that will solve all of your problems (if you know of any please let me know). Just use the child safety devices you received at birth… if you’re too tired then use my favorite child safety device: Coffee.

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