PSA to parents: secure your furniture to the wall

This is an unsponsored post sharing our scary experience that happened this holiday season. Some links in article may be affiliate links where you can buy childproofing furniture straps to help secure your furniture to the wall and we earn a commission at no cost to you.

We all have stories of furniture that falls on kids, sometimes with the worst possible outcomes. My niece is here only because she got really lucky when the large TV atop her dresser only required stitches. My daughter’s best friend is here only because a bed took the brunt of the weight of the TV and dresser when it fell. The message is always the same: secure your furniture to the wall.

But, sometimes even the best of us need a reminder. Maybe it’s the new piece of furniture that just came into the home hasn’t been secured yet, or maybe it’s a vacation home you haven’t gotten around to securing because you’re only there every other weekend. Whatever message you need: this is it.

Stop what you’re doing and secure your furniture to the wall. Or, maybe read this first.

When I was pregnant with my first, I read a harrowing tale about a mom who lost one of her children when a dresser fell. From that day on, every piece of furniture was then secure to the wall. Then, we moved on and did the rest of the house, especially focusing on furniture with drawers that can come out, causing the furniture to become top heavy.

Then my daughter got to the crawling/toddling stage and we did yet another check. We checked and secured anything that was slightly loose and verified everything was safe for kids. And, even though our kids aren’t climbers at all, we also live in an earthquake prone area and it’s just better to be on the safer side. I mean, it only costs pennies to secure a piece of furniture to the wall, but the cost of not securing it is huge.

I even went as far as to go over to friends and family and help them secure their furniture. I noticed one day that a strong gust of wind could knock down my sister’s hall shelf and I had the drill and straps out before you could say “whoa, whoa, I’ll handle the power tools.” Then I did the rest of her house {with my husband handling all the drilling this time}. Same went for when my other sister found out she was expecting, and many of my friends.

It was just another service I provide: freaking out and insisting you secure your furniture to the wall

Ever since my kids were able to move around the house independent of me, we’ve had a hard and fast rule. If something falls or clatters, you immediately yell “everything’s alright, it was just ______ that fell”. Even guests to our home know this rule. If anyone were to ever forget, they will find me running at them like a crazy woman checking to make sure everything’s fine.

But, even I now have my story.

It was Christmas night and we all stayed up late to watch the new Wonder Woman 84 movie. It had been a long and magical day filled with laughing, snuggling, and being grateful to celebrate here at home as a family. Then we said goodnight and the kids went up to bed. If was about 20 minutes of them getting ready for bed and going back and forth between their rooms. But, then it was quiet.

About an hour and a half after they went upstairs, I heard a low thump. It sounded like when my daughter kicks the wall in her sleep, but it still made me pause. When no other noises were heard, I assumed everything was fine. But, then we fell asleep on the couch, tired after a long day of Christmas magic. When we woke at 2:30, I decided not to check on the kids because I didn’t want to wake them unnecessarily and instead went to bed.

I regret that decision so much now, hindsight being 20/20 and all.

The next morning, we woke to my oldest running in and telling us there was blood everywhere. She had her 5 year old sister with her and her little head was covered in dried blood. In my shock of seeing my daughter covered in blood, I remember feeling like the wind was knocked out of me.

secure furniture to the wall

While I consoled my crying girls, my husband went into their room into their room to investigate. He found that the jewelry cabinet my oldest received for Christmas had fallen on top of our youngest daughter’s bed in the night. He picked it up and placed it safely on the ground, and that’s when I made it into the room carrying our daughter, still covered in blood.

He carried her off to clean her up and see how bad the injuries were. Because of the way the blood had dried on her head and in her hair, it was nearly impossible to tell where the actual injury was. I got to work taking everything off her bed to try and salvage what I could of her sheets and bedding as well as her stuffed animals.

He called out to me to come get her and dry her off, and that’s when I saw just how bad the gash on her head was. We agreed she needed to be seen as soon as possible, and we headed off to urgent care to get her taken care of.

Being that it was the day after Christmas, I was worried the urgent care would be horribly backed up, but we found one with only a 1/2 hour wait. It was thankfully a quick trip once she was in. Concussion was ruled out {I was so worried that the cabinet knocked her out in her sleep, but thankfully that doesn’t seem like the case}, and there was only minor things the urgent care had to do to help her heal.

secure furniture to the wall

All being said, we were so incredibly lucky. If even one or two things had gone differently, this tale would be one of those harrowing stories I read while pregnant.

Now, for all your questions:

The jewelry cabinet

First things first, the cabinet was mounted to the wall the day the incident happened. It’s now secure and I check it regularly.

secure furniture to the wall

Many have a hard time picturing the jewelry cabinet and how it can fall in the night, so we get a lot of questions about the cabinet itself. The cabinet was meant to be wall mounted as it had a full length mirror on its front. The cabinet is big and heavy, made of wood with a huge mirror on front, and full of jewelry organizers, lighting, and more. This isn’t a small jewelry box or a cheap plastic thing – it’s heavy and hard to move. You can see the exact jewelry cabinet here on Amazon.

My daughter had just received the jewelry cabinet from her grandparents the day before and she spent hours getting all of her jewelry placed inside throughout the day on Christmas. Because we we busy all day with festivities and then cooking large meals on Christmas Day, we hadn’t gotten around the hanging the cabinet just yet. So, she had the cabinet leaning against the wall instead.

Even though it was leaning against the wall, when you opened the door, the weight shifted forward and you had to prop the cabinet upright. Every single time she opened it for either of us parents, we would remind her to lean it back when she was done. And, every single time I walked by their room throughout the day it was back leaning against the wall.

secure furniture to the wall

Since we didn’t go up to say goodnight in all of our post-holiday blur, the placement of the cabinet at bedtime remains a mystery. We’re not sure if the cabinet was left upright by accident, or if it became unbalanced due to bumping into it, or if it simply wasn’t leaned far enough back. All we know is that at some point during the night it fell over onto our youngest’s bed.

Proof that it’s now secured and up off the floor.

secure furniture to the wall

Our youngest’s bed

You may be wondering how the jewelry cabinet can fall on top of a bed, and I understand your confusion.

You see, our little one was prone to falling out of beds until recently, so we had kept her in a trundle bed instead of moving her to a bunkbed as we planned. This is the trundle we have from Amazon. Ironic that we were trying to keep her safest by keeping her low to the ground and that’s when she got injured.

Since the trundle has a low mattress in it along with a pillow, blankets, and stuffed animals, the wood frame of the trundle bed sticks up a bit. We obviously didn’t see the cabinet fall and can only speculate on how it fell and what it hit first, but it appears that the extra height of the trundle frame was our saving grace.

In the morning, the jewelry cabinet was resting on top of the trundle frame and it appears that it took much of the impact of the fall. We were also incredibly lucky that the mirror on the front didn’t shatter with the fall because that could have caused even more injuries.

Feeling really lucky

I just can’t get over how lucky we were that our daughter only had minor injuries from the accident. There were so many things that had to go just right in order to keep her from having major and extensive injuries from this huge cabinet falling on her in her sleep.

I’m thankful that she’s still healing well, and now that we’re a month after the accident it is scabbed up nicely. The gash was also thankfully in her hair line, which means we don’t have to worry too much about scarring. This is the cut a few days after the accident.

secure furniture to the wall

I’ll forever be thankful that the cabinet fell in such a way that it didn’t completely crush her beneath it, and that her bed side rails and bedding kept the mirror intact so it didn’t compound her injuries.

We’re all feeling really grateful that there don’t seem to be any lasting effects, except more of a focus on safety around the home. My daughter isn’t blaming herself for all the unknowns, our littlest isn’t struggling to fall asleep from fear, and all physical and emotional scars are healing well.

We were just really, really lucky.

And, we know now it can happen to *anyone*. Even if the furniture is brand new and you haven’t ordered straps yet. Even if everyone was told how to safely handle the furniture to prevent injuries. Even if your kids are older and have always been incredibly responsible. Even on Christmas night. It can happen to *anyone*, anytime.

Okay, now you can really stop reading. Please, go you secure your furniture to the wall

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.