We have been working on our home for the past year or so. We’ve updated the kitchen, bathrooms, backyard. One of the things that I keep thinking about are those ‘different’ changes we have made that are specifically for our son. These unique upgrades would make most ‘typical’ households question why we have them. I keep thinking if we ever sell our home, the type of questions that we will get. 🤣
For example, the front door opens in a unique way. Since our son is a runner, my husband managed to update the knobs so that he can’t get out. The trick to it is to use both hands. The top doorknob needs to turn to the right and the second one to the left in order to open the door. We laugh when we need to explain this to our visitors.
The upstairs hallway bathroom locks from the outside. Since the monkey will try to take showers on his own every now and then, we cannot let him do this. We have noticed he will turn the water on full blast, and it is very hot. One time I heard the shower, and I ran to look for him. He was inside the shower, hiding in the corner. The water was steaming hot. He was hiding so he wouldn’t get burned. The solution to avoid this in the future was to lock the door from the outside.
When my brother in law was visiting us a few weeks back from California, he struggled to use the shower knowing he couldn’t lock the door from inside. 😭
The bathroom in our bedroom is a story all on its own! 😂 Our bedroom has a walk-in bathroom without a door. When we were remodeling the shower, we added a shut off valve. But we hid the valve in my closet. This way, we turn it off when the monkey wants to shower unsupervised. But in order not to have a hole in my closet wall, we covered it with a medicine cabinet. I chose the cabinet because it was on sale. LOL Adding to this, the cabinet has a mirror. Which means if we ever sell our home, someone is looking thru my walk-in closet, they will see a medicine cabinet on the wall. If they open it, there’s a shut off valve. How would someone explain this? 😳😂
When we were looking at houses a few years back, I loved the fact that this one came with a laundry shoot. Simply open the small door from upstairs, throw dirty clothes, and it lands on a basket downstairs, next to the laundry room. The monkey started using it to throw things when he didn’t want them. I-Pad died, throw it. Didn’t like the plastic little chair, throw it. Doesn’t want to eat, throw the food. Solution? We now have a lock on it. If you want to use it, you will need the key.
Other things: the door to go into the garage has a spring so that it closes automatically. A few years back, the door was left opened. I am always making sure the monkey doesn’t try to get out from the front door. Didn’t realize that the door into the garage was opened and so was the garage door. He simply walked out of our home when he saw the opening. This is one of the many times we couldn’t find him. After searching for him, he was down the street next to the arroyo. Now the door closes automatically. I got this idea from one of our readers.
We installed cameras on his room a few months back. I also got this idea from one of our readers. She said she placed a camera to keep an eye on her son and make sure he was safe. But also to give him a sense of independence. I loved this idea. The monkey closes his door and likes to watch movies on his I-Pad, look at his fishes, or color. And I don’t have to disturb him to make sure he is okay. I simply check up on him on my phone. We also have a camera on the hallway. If we are downstairs and he is upstairs, he will go to the bathroom. The hallway camera is just to make sure I can keep track of him as he runs to the bathroom and back to his room. I think from an outsider looking in, having cameras in our hallway and bedroom maybe a little strange. 😂
We have double gated doors on one side of our backyard since he was able to figure out how to open it. On the other side, we tied the doors with ropes around the gate. This has proven to be very effective. He’s trying to get out and realize he couldn’t.
We have chimes on our door that leads to the backyard. One of the times the monkey was in his room. I was folding laundry. When I came to check up on him, I couldn’t find him. I noticed he was outside swimming on his own. This really frightened me. And now when the back door opens an alarm goes off.
And the list goes on and on….
The monkey loves being home. And these additions to our home were made so that he is safe. We have learned many things from the many mistakes we have made. And now our home is safe for him.
But if we ever do move, and decide to sell our home, maybe I will include a link to this post. Maybe this will help to explain the uniqueness of our autism home. ❤️ Or it might just be a great story for them to tell their families and friends. 😂
But in the meantime, we will keep on trying to spread awareness and understanding. And at the same time, living and loving our little autism family. 🧩💙🥰