A dad recently took to Reddit’s AITA forum after a disagreement with his daughter over her bedroom door. The 15-year-old expressed that she wanted a lock on her door for privacy because her younger brothers keep coming in without knocking.
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“I said OK and a couple days later I bought a lock similar to what you find on bathroom doors which can be opened with a coin or flathead from the outside,” he wrote. “I installed it but my daughter said she didn’t want a lock like that, she wanted a lock where only she had a key. Not me or my wife or anyone else.”
The dad told his daughter he didn’t want to do that in case an emergency pops up, and they need to get into her room. “I’ve already talked to my sons about respecting a door that’s locked and from what my daughter’s told me they aren’t trying to snoop in her room, they are just careless sometimes with asking for permission before entering,” he explained.
Now his daughter is upset with him. His wife, meanwhile, suggested giving their daughter the lock she wants and then making secret key copies for themselves but the dad doesn’t feel comfortable keeping a secret like that. “AITA?” he asked Reddit.
The general consensus was no, the Reddit user is not TA in this particular situation, but that there are plenty of other ways to make sure his daughter has her privacy. Many pointed out that lying about the extra keys wasn’t necessary.
“If you get a keyed lock, I don’t think you should lie to your daughter about not having one,” a user wrote. “You should say that she can have one, but only if you get a copy – otherwise, no dice. If not, then the lock that you have should be sufficient. If the door is locked, then her brothers will have to ask for permission either way, so I’m not entirely sure why she’d be upset.”
Multiple people suggested that the OP needs to offer stricter consequences to his sons for barging into their sister’s room. “NTA on the lock issue but at major AH on the just talking to your sons about walking in on their sister,” one person wrote. “She is 15 years old and has hit puberty. Pre-teen boys should know not to walk in on her. There should be disciplinary actions when they do.”
Another user added: “You need to talk to your sons about respecting a door that’s closed. Or even one that’s not closed if it is not a space they are supposed to be in. They should never be in your daughter’s room unless they are specifically invited by her.”
Others noted that it could be helpful to give the daughter a lock box or cabinet so she can store any items she doesn’t want her brothers finding, like a diary. “Then she has guaranteed privacy for whatever sensitive items she has when when she’s out of the room without the safety risks of having a full lock on the room door,” someone suggested. “Get her something like the IKEA Ivar or PS cabinets that have locking doors, they’re $100-150 and are steel construction, so they’ll last.”
Would you allow your child to have a keyed lock? What’s your policy when it comes to privacy?
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