Keys and kids


We are at the point where we would like to move in together, however, I am concerned about issuing keys to my house to the child because of the ex’s issues with anger management and hatred of myself. Custody is half time and because of school, the child really needs a key to access the house.

Does anyone have any advice or suggestions on how they dealt with a similar situation?


Your post is somewhat confusing. Are these keys for your children to your house or to the person’s house you have moved into? I cannot get a grasp on this. OK. If the kids need a key to whatever house, put a key above the outside light or in a “fake” rock or in a plant or under the mat so that the children will have a way to get into whatever home they need to get into. How old are these children? Can you put a key in their school backpacks/lunchbox? I just don’t quite get your situation, but kids need to be able to get into the house! Even my judge acknowledged “latchkey” kids. I keep an extra key in a little statue outside on my patio and an extra one in my car glove compartment. Remember, locks are for honest people! Kids needs to be able to get into the house!


Sorry about the clarity. The situation is keys for my STB stepkids. The one is in middle school and not the most responsible as far as belongings go. The mother hates me and in the past has caused some minor property damage and threatened me with bodily harm. I am concerned that she might do something vindictive if she were able to lay hands on a key to the house…whether via the stepchild accidentally forgetting it at her house or whether it was hidden somewhere on the property. She has serious anger management issues and I don’t trust her to control her impulses were she to fight with my BF about something. I’d rather her not set foot in my house unless I or my BF is there.


Your situation sound similar to mine, though we don’t have a issue with the ex coming to the house. My husband put his foot down a long time ago with regards to the ex and the boundaries that are in place. She is not allowed at our home. He called the police department when she would show up at his house unannouced to “straighten things out” with me prior to their divorce. Other than last year at a mutual family friend’s funeral, I haven’t seen her in 3 years. I don’t go with him to “exchange” the children and I’ve never spoken to her. (I don’t respond well to yelling)
I’ve always sort of worried about giving the kids a key, but luckily, they have never needed one. This is the same reason I’ve never given them my cell phone number.

If there is absolutely no other alternative than that the child needs access to the home when you or the father is not there, is there a neighbor that you trust to hold a key? Putting a key on the property would be a better suggestion than giving it to the child to keep up with. Have the father let the child know that NO ONE is to be told where the key is for any reason. Maybe the ex will overlook the fact that the child has to be gaining access to the home somehow…
If the question does come up, she doesn’t have to be told anything except the child is able to gain access to the home. Then have the father put notice to his ex in writing that she is not allowed at your home without permission by him or you, not the kids. Make sure she knows that one of you must be there for her to be on the property. Though she may be unstable, she would still not get away with tresspassing, harrassment, or stalking. The law is on your side in this.
Install a security “camera” or let the neighbors know that she is not allowed. They have some that will show live feed without recording and they are minimal costs, or even a fake one that looks real just to give someone cause to wonder. Document everything.

The only issue I ever had was, what would I tell the children if I had their mother arrested for assault? But the one time that it nearly came to that, they witnessed it themselves and they saw me walk away. I never had the restraining order put on her because of them either. They love their mother and regardless of my “reasons” and their feelings towards me, it would still have affected our relationship negatively.



I don’t mind her AT the house. I just don’t want her IN the house.

Unfortunately, the neighbors keep the same hours we do, so that won’t work. I hate leaving a key lying around outside, but that may end up being the best option. I’m afraid that if the child left the key at the ex’s accidentally, and the ex was unwatched, she might go in unattended. She has a history of stalking-type behaviors.

I’ve always tried to remain as neutral as possible. This is the one time that I’ve put any stipulation on anything where she is concerned.


I know. I don’t give the keys to my kids but there is a window in the back they can get in that only they know about. I did make a copy of their dad’s key just in case they forget something or get sick.