17 Things That Can Go Wrong When You Leave Your Toddler Alone for 2 Seconds (PHOTOS)

Judy Dutton | Aug 7, 2015 Being a Mom

toddler messSad, but true: No matter how hard moms try to beat back the chaos of their lives, all it takes is a second or two where you turn your back on your kids -- to pee, shower, or take an important phone call -- for it all to come undone.

Curious just how much of a mess kids can make when left to their own devices for a mere moment? Check out these stories -- and photos! -- from moms who made this mistake and paid dearly.


Image via StarLight23/Cafemom

  • If You Let a Toddler Make His Own Crafts...


    "We were doing arts and crafts and I left for two minutes to go to the bathroom. Who leaves an open craft box in a room alone with a toddler? Lesson learned!"

  • If You Give a Kid His Party Favors...


    "We were on the way home from a birthday party. I made the mistake of letting him have the favor bag, which happened to have stamps that he decided belonged all over his face."

  • If You Take Too Long to Make Them a Drink...


    "I told my 3-year-old to wait a minute before I got her a drink ... so she started making her own Kool-aid. She had everything and I caught her filling the pitcher with water from the fridge. She was so proud of herself!"

  • If You Let Them Decide What to Play With Next...


    "This happened while I was putting away laundry. They emptied every puzzle and game they owned from off the shelving unit onto the floor. This had to be the biggest mess I've ever seen, and the most mad I've ever been. It's funny looking back on it now, but holy cow, it was a disaster created in mere minutes."

    More from The Stir: 20 Craziest Places Toddlers Have Gotten Stuck

  • If You Let a Toddler Help Herself to Eggs...


    "This is what happened when I turned my attention to my 4-year-old for a few minutes. My almost-2-year-old helped herself into the refrigerator, found some eggs, and got crackin'! I'm just glad she had the sense to make the mess outside!"

  • If You Leave a Toddler With a Bag of Flour...


    He had just turned 3 and this is what I found when I went to check on my little guy. He had gotten very white! I wasn't really mad or anything. I was like oops."

  • If They Get Hungry While You Leave to Pee...


    "In the time it took me to pee, they pulled the gate down from our bedroom doorway, grabbed a box of Cheerios from the pantry, and dumped it all over the living room. I ran out of the bathroom when I heard what sounded like marbles spilling -- I had no idea what could have been spilled -- and found this."

  • If You Leave Your Nail Polish Out...


    "I was trying to get my two kids out the door, calling upstairs for them to come down, but my son never replied. So I finally went upstairs and saw he had gotten into some black nail polish and was painting himself. It had gotten on the carpet too. I don't know if our house will survive him! If he has access to anything for a second, it's everywhere."

    More from The Stir: 25 Crazy Things Moms of Daughters Say Every Day

  • If You Leave the Vaseline Within Reach...


    "This is what happens when you leave a toddler alone for a few minutes. My mom forgot to put the Vaseline away and he found it."

  • If You Clean Before Company...


    "Believe it or not, there are two toddlers in this photo. The story behind it: I had spent hours cleaning, arranging, and vacuuming because I was having company the next day and wanted to be sure the whole house was perfect. Afterwards, I put the twins in their room and left for about 10 minutes to take a quick shower. When I got out, I went to check on the boys, and this is how I found them -- sleeping like babies in the biggest mess I had ever seen."

  • If You Leave Out a Paint Roller...


    "I left a paint roller soaking in the sink after I finished painting some furniture. While I was gone in the bathroom for less than a minute, he had managed to find it and paint himself and the kitchen blue!"

  • If You Don't Hide the Permanent Markers...


    "These two 4-year-old cousins drew all over themselves and decorated the deck -- all with red PERMANENT marker!"

    More from The Stir: 40 Funny Toddler Mispronunciations

  • If You Turn Your Back On Your Laundry...


    "My dryer WAS full of clothes. This little angel took all my clean clothes out and dumped them on the floor so she could climb in there."

  • If You Give Them Pudding...


    "I put her in her high chair with chocolate pudding, went outside to fill up the dog's water bowl ... and this is what I walked in on."

  • If You Let Them Play Outside...


    "Here's what my youngest looked like after just playing outside awhile with her older brother and sister. Thankfully there wasn't much of a mess in the house, but she definitely was a mess!"

    More from The Stir: 30 Crazy Things Moms of Sons Say Every Day

  • If You Tell Them to Paint the Pumpkin...


    "We were painting pumpkins, and I walked around the corner to grab a rag to clean them up. Apparently she decided that painting herself was more fun! We started out so nice and neat ..."

  • If You Leave Four Kids Alone...


    "That's cornstarch -- from a five-foot-high shelf in the pantry -- and a microfiber couch. It was already pretty trashed at all of one year old, but that was the tipping point. Needless to say, they were all pretty pleased with themselves."

    More from The Stir: 10 Hardest Moments for a Stay-at-Home Mom

More Slideshows