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  1. #1
    lambjam's Avatar
    lambjam is offline Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!
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    Default At what age would you leave a child home alone?

    DS1 is 10, and has asked to stay at home while I take DS2 to his ballet lesson. The lesson is a five-minute drive from our house, and he would be alone for just over an hour.

    DH thinks that I should, but I'm not comfortable doing it so I have refused.

    Just wondering how other people feel about this? DS1 is the most sensible boy of his age you could hope to meet, and I have no doubt in him. I suppose what I worry about is the unexpected; a stranger at the door, a fall down the stairs, a fire (although goodness knows how that would happen!).

    Just to clarify, because my gut tells me not to there's no way I'll be doing it. But I am curious to know if fellow hubbers think that I'm being over-protective, or if this is a normal reaction!

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    It depends on the child. How responsible they are etc...

    We first left DD home alone at 14.
    Alone with her siblings 15.

    But that's us. We never had a need too until then.

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    Such a hard one!!

    My kids are much younger than your DS and I truly have no idea what I will do when the time comes.

    I remember being left at home alone for up to an hour when I was about 11 or 12. I wasn't allowed to answer the door and was to ring our neighbour if I was at all worried (no mobile phones in those days).

    I have a friend who will duck out for 15 mins to drop her youngest DS at an after school activity and leave 9 and 7 year old other DSs at home. Same rules - don't answer the door, stay inside, ring the mobile if needed. But it's only 15 mins which is not very long at all. She said she wouldn't leave them for any longer at this stage - maybe in a few years.

    Gut instinct is the right choice . I'm banking that I will be overprotective in this way when the time comes!

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    I think the legal age to leave a child at home alone is 13? I would probably wait until around that age, any way.

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    go with you gut dear, if everything is telling you no, then it is for a reason.

    for me, for my own children, i wont be leaving my children at home until my oldest is well into his teens. maybe 16...its hard to say.

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    FearlessLeader is offline Winner 2013 - Most Memorable Thread
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    honestly? Probably 7 or 8, depending on the child. for *me*, i want my children to feel confident they can look after themselves, i also want them to know i am confident they can look after themselves.
    I think 10 is old enough. I think 13 is far, far too old. If you're at high school and you've never been allowed to look after yourself you will have an extremely difficult time learning the hard way.
    I was home alone after school everyday at 9 or 10, my brother was 2 years younger. I was out going shopping with friends on my own at this age, too (mum would drop us at the shopping centre and meet us somewhere a few hours later). And i was traveling the world nby myself at 16. So, to think that there were kids who weren't allowed to stay home for an hour at 14/15. Well, it just blows my mind.

    Go on, flame me

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    Aside from the "what would they do if the unexpected happened?" issue, I think about what would happen if you didn't come home, or were very late back. Say, if you were held up, or in an accident, or car broke down etc.

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    hrm im not really sure, my brother and sisters are all within 2 years of each other in age and we were left at home earlier then that. My oldest sister was probably 11 so my brother would of been about 8. Maybe my parents thought we would be okay because there was 4 of us. We were fine, we werent allowed to answer the door and all those rules.
    We used to play in the street when we were younger then that, on our owns, well we had each other but yeah im not sure what i would do.
    From about 12 we were in high shool and we used to be at home after school until mum finished work or something

    But that was my upbrining and i dont know that i would be comfortable with allowing that for my kids. id be more inclined to leave them on there own if they were by themselves, like if they had a friend or something

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    My mother left me at home at that same age but that was in the times of trampolines with out safty nets or padding....

    It would depend how long you were going out for in my mind, im not if i would leave my child at home at that age because he is only 4.

    My mother left us with contact numbers to reach her, or some one she was with, numbers for a neighbour or family member that would come to us if we needed it, and obviously doctor and emergency. We were never ever allowed to open the door unless mum had specified that some one was coming over.

    we were pretty good about it however if mum was running late and it was just me at home i would get scared and jumpy at every noise i heard

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    I have JUST started and they are 10 & 11.
    I should admit that its only for a few mins!
    I left DD a few weeks ago to get DS from school, that was the first time. Then I left DS to drop DD at dancing last week... was gone half an hour. Yesterday I had to get the car from the mechanic and they were here together for about an hour.. I came home to find DS on the ps3 and DD in her room listening to music...and their completed homework on the bench for me to check! I nearly died hahaha


 

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