Home alone...

joe

Junior Member
Dec 11, 2013
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Two boys, 9 and 11. What is the general opinion of being home alone? I am talking after school for a few hours and possibly an entire day here and there. Maybe even the whole summer when school lets out. They also have to walk home from school (about a half mile), but the town isn't so great. Thoughts?
 

Xero

PF Deity
Mar 20, 2008
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Can you please elaborate on "maybe even the whole summer"??? lol I hope you meant it differently than you wrote it. Obviously kids of really any age should not be left alone for a "whole summer". That makes no sense.

I copy pasted this from somewhere, seems like good advice to me:

Most authorities agree that leaving a 12-year-old alone at home for an hour or two is acceptable, but someone this age should not be responsible for other children. The decision to leave a child at home alone is a very personal decision that needs to be made based on parents' feelings and experience with their own child. In general, children under the age of 10 should not be left on their own, and babies and younger children should not be left alone even for a few minutes.

Here are some questions to ask yourself before you leave your child home alone.

- Does your child feel frightened or apprehensive about staying home alone?
- Does your child follow your instructions and your rules?
- Can you count on your child to tell the truth?
- Can your child be counted on to stay clear-headed in an unexpected or emergency situation?
- Can your child calmly dial 911, give their full name (and yours), street address and phone number, and explain the situation?

Most people base these decisions more on the level of maturity and responsibility of their child than age, but um... are these kids (the ones you want to leave alone all day and apparently "all summer") the same kids that don't wipe their own bottoms or take their own showers? lol cause... baby steps, man. 0_o
 

joe

Junior Member
Dec 11, 2013
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By alone all summer, I mean during the week days when we are at work. From 8-5
 

joe

Junior Member
Dec 11, 2013
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I agree with a couple hours, but not during an entire day (like during the summer when there's no school).
 

IADad

Super Moderator
Feb 23, 2009
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I have an 11 yo almost 12, and within the last 6 months or so, we've been progressively allowing him more time at home alone (he wasn't at all before 11) as well as some time where he is responsible for his just turned 7 yo brother. So, during that time he's actually his brother's babysitter and is to handle it as a job.

Now, we have gone the majority of the day recently. They were home from school due to extreme temperatures., So, I stayed home a little late, left them about 9:00, went to work, then came back and had lunch with them at noon and left them again for the afternoon. But some of the considerations are:

-the 11 yo is very responsible
-They both know the rules for when they are home alone (re answering the phone/ door etc.
-They don't play outside when they are home alone (yet) (that -obviously wasn't a problem at -15F the other day)
-I work about 5 minutes from home.
-Grandma (the good one, not the evil one) lives 1/4 mi away and can essentially see most of our house most of the time
- They have an aunt who could be there in 10 minutes if needed.

So, they have a plan, know their responsibilities, and have options if things don't go as planned. It's been a process to get to the point where we can trust a 3-4 hour stretch.

I don't think I'd let them do all day during the summer, as that's a lot of responsibility for the 11/12 yo and they both have lots of activities to get to anyway, so they need an adult.