Death of the Baby Monitor

The first time Thomas and I started browsing the baby monitor section was while adding things to my registry for my baby shower. Video monitors are cool, but looking at the $100+ price tag, we knew it was something no one would ever buy for us so we went for a good, but much cheaper baby monitor.
The baby shower came, and surprise surprise, no monitor was received. Lots of clothes, a stroller and other goodies- but no monitor.

Being strapped for cash, we bought an OK model. Nothing fantastic, but it had good ratings when I researched it online and wasn’t super expensive. Later down the line, some friends of ours bought us a much nicer model- but now that we already had one, we ended up taking it back and probably buying diapers. I don’t remember anymore.

Holden’s room is right across the hall from ours. Our entire house has wood floors, so everything echoes. We probably didn’t need a baby monitor because if he woke up there’s no way you wouldn’t be able to hear him- but it’s a nice thing to have. It was also a source of constant paranoia. I’d find myself lying awake at night listening to the monitor waiting for Holden to move, breathe, make a noise. He’s generally a VERY restless and noisy sleeper, so if I didn’t hear him moving, after a little while i’d race to his room and stare at his chest making sure he was breathing.
Then there were the nights where his constant moving would keep me awake. Every little grunt, whine, kick, and rustle would keep me from falling asleep. Eventually, like living near an airport, you get used to the noise and learn to sleep through it.

I’ve never heard of baby monitors having any kind of life expectancy (like straightening irons for your hair, those bitches die after 2 years), so i’m assuming the fact that we bought a cheap monitor finally caught up with us about a month ago.

Have to be incredibly careful turning it on, or it buzzes so freaking loud it would wake the dead. It started picking up interference (not like the creepy lady voice it picked up when Holden was a few months old) and buzzing constantly. You’d turn it down, and it would be WAY too low- but try to adjust it and you’d burst an eardrum when Holden woke up crying in the middle of the night.

Now, giving up the baby monitor was NOT something I was prepared to do. It’s become a source of comfort, knowing that if anything goes wrong.. even the most quiet thing, i’d be able to hear it.. but the ridiculous static buzz coming from it at all times has become more of a nuisance than a help.

In a way, i’ve traded annoyance for paranoia. It’s like being a new parent all over again. I worry I won’t hear something going wrong, I won’t hear him wake up and he’ll be in his crib whining for hours before Thomas or I wake up to hear him. All of this is probably just my mind getting the best of me- because when Holden wants to be heard, he knows how to get our attention.. but my mind always seems to get the best of me.

I would be tempted to go and get a new monitor, but how much more use out of it would I get, really? How long are you supposed to use a baby monitor for? I wouldn’t imagine most parents are giving theirs up yet.

Guess it’s back to hovering over him while he sleeps. Not that I mind, but I imagine he will with the amount of times i’m sure to wake him up by sneaking into his room, only to have the door and/or floor creak and pop.

Posted on December 26, 2008 by Holdin' Holden 7 Comments
Holdin' Holden

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  • We have the same problem, crazy interfer. that is creepy. Thought my house was haunted at one point due to that becuase it would happen every night at the same time, around 1:30 am. But my child is 14 months and we have no clue when we are supposed to stop using the baby monitor. Like you I am paranoid that I won’t hear the crying or if something else happens like throwing up in the middle of the night. Our rooms are across the small house so it is very hard to hear crying/whinning without the monitor.

  • AHH! that gave me goosebumps! The creepy eery voice saying “hello???…. helloooooo??” only happened to me once but it was enough to NEVER accidentally leave the monitor on again!

    I’d say use it for as long as you want if you can’t hear your LO otherwise!

    Although I can hear Holden crying without a monitor, I HATE not hearing his every movement now. It used to be so irritating, but now it’s become a comfort to hear him move around.. and I can’t! making me totally paranoid!

    I don’t miss the crackling or buzzing one little bit though

  • Eh.. I dont worry too much about if Holden is breathing or not so much anymore. I worry more about him becoming adventurous and leaving his crib. That loud THUD will not sound fun.

    I believe that he is a pretty good sleeper now. Not too too much to worry about. We still do have to be a little quiet because the floors tend to have a creaking/popping/echoing effect, but other than that we are ok.

    Baby monitors are a little useless after a couple weeks from when a blanket is introduced. Once they learn how to throw those things off, they dont seem to serve much of a purpose.

    We are ok for now.

  • Ally’s room is across the hall from ours too! I thought I needed the monitor, but one night it died and come to find out… Didn’t need it at all. Her cries were enough to wake me up!

    At least he is in the crib and can’t get into anything unlike Ally who can get out of her bed, come into our bed, roam the house, etc. LOL We’ve started shutting the bathroom and living room doors, so it’s safer for her.

    Our monitor buzzed really bad too! I think it was a Fisher-Price one. They make kids toys, no wonder it was a piece of crap. LOL

    Is his crib adjusted all the way? Found this on thebabycorner.com: “Is your child ready to start transitioning from crib to toddler bed? If he is frequently climbing out of his crib or if he is 36 inches tall or more, it may be that time.”

    How do you get stuff on PPP and SocialSpark? Everything seems to be already GONE!! Tips?!

  • As far as I know, Holden isn’t trying to climb out of his crib. He just throws everything out and then yells until we come and get him. He’s not much of a climber in general, and I don’t think he’s 36 inches tall.

    We have the crib dropped down lower so he CAN’T climb out though, so that might hinder his climbing ability.

    As far as PPP, it’s hard to get opps. I just snatch them when I see them available. It’s not often, especially right now.. but every now and then they’ll pop up available and I take them.
    Social Spark is a little different. You can still ‘take’ an opportunity if there’s a ‘wait’, meaning you’re in line for it and it can be a week later and you’ll get an email saying you have 12 hours to write the post. As long as it says ‘open’ and ‘qualified’, take the opp. Sometimes you get it, and sometimes it closes before it’s your turn. It’s really stupid.
    A lot of times, opps get snatched up within minutes, soyou have to be really quick about it.

  • The first one we had died 2 months ago and I had to buy a new one- that sucked. I have no idea when to stop using it either…I really didn’t expect her to still cry so much during the night at this age I guess. She’s only gotten out of her crib once so far, but when she does it again I’m going to put the yard gate we have around our Christmas tree around her crib! ha I don’t even trust her in her room alone nevermind wandering the house. She’s around 33 inches tall and already playing with doorknobs trying to figure them out so I’m going to have to lock her up at night (and keep the monitor going and going).

  • I don’t trust Holden wandering the house either, WAY too much to get into. He spends most of his days locked in the living room area.