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Old 05-19-2004, 08:05 PM   #1
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blythe HB User
home alone- what is the right age?

Hi!
I'm wondering what age your child was when you decided that daycare was no longer necessary and they were allowed to stay home alone for extended periods of time. How did they adjust? Any major issues?

 
Old 05-19-2004, 09:20 PM   #2
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Re: home alone- what is the right age?

This is a difficult question to answer. Children need supervision, especially these days when there are so many things for them to get into trouble with.

If you are thinking about children staying home while parents work, I would say when they are in high school, closer to graduating.

Even then, there should be rules as to whether visitors would be allowed while parents are away, where they can go during the day, what they are expected to do and not do.

Some children are more mature than others. Latchkey kids are at high risk.

Last edited by Misty800; 05-19-2004 at 09:22 PM.

 
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Old 05-19-2004, 09:52 PM   #3
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Re: home alone- what is the right age?

I am a mature kid and I started staying home alone when i was 12 but just for the couple hours between when i got home from school and my mom came home from work. I had set rules and I followed them. I had to call my mom right when I got home and I had chores and homework to do before my mom got home and she would check it to make sure I wasn't out running around town and I was doing what I needed to do. It all depends on how well you can trust your kid also. hope I helped :-)

 
Old 05-20-2004, 08:43 AM   #4
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KimRick HB User
Re: home alone- what is the right age?

I was 9 when I started staying home alone during the summers; I also had to babysit my younger sister, who was a TERROR , that was 18 mos. younger than me. We were pretty self sufficient, waking up early, putting the t.v. on and I even remember making us french toast & eggs for breakfast. We NEVER went outside when we were left alone; we ALWAYS played inside while my mother was at work. I'm grown now with an 8 year old daughter of my own and I, personally, would not leave her home alone until she's MUCH MUCH older. Things are so much more different and dangerous than they were 15-20 years ago! Now-a-days, you got crazies posing as UPS men, cops, anything to get inside the house!



Quote:
Originally Posted by AlwyzSick
I am a mature kid and I started staying home alone when i was 12 but just for the couple hours between when i got home from school and my mom came home from work. I had set rules and I followed them. I had to call my mom right when I got home and I had chores and homework to do before my mom got home and she would check it to make sure I wasn't out running around town and I was doing what I needed to do. It all depends on how well you can trust your kid also. hope I helped :-)

 
Old 05-20-2004, 12:17 PM   #5
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Magpiezoe HB User
Re: home alone- what is the right age?

Hello, This is a sticky question. I'll have to think about this when my son's older. I just assumed I'd have the bus drop him off work when he gets old enough. I do know we have to check into our state laws, because certain states have laws on hold old a child needs to be before they are left home alone. You can't even let a child alone in a car to make a quick errand here...Not that I would do that, but I see a lot of people doing that. One lady did it at one of our local grocery stores. She left 3 children in her SUV, while she ran in to get some "quick" groceries. Guess what happened when she came out? A cop was waiting for her. He stood right next to the SUV talking to the kids the whole time she was in the store. Yep, she got fined.
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Old 05-20-2004, 12:29 PM   #6
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KimRick HB User
Re: home alone- what is the right age?

Here's another example, THIS MORNING this woman stopped at her youngest son's, 2 years old, day care to drop him off and the oldest, 9 years old, waited in the car for his mother when this man car jacked her with the oldest son still in the back seat!!! He let the kid go and the poor thing walked back to the day care - unharmed. There are ALOT of crazies out there!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magpiezoe
Hello, This is a sticky question. I'll have to think about this when my son's older. I just assumed I'd have the bus drop him off work when he gets old enough. I do know we have to check into our state laws, because certain states have laws on hold old a child needs to be before they are left home alone. You can't even let a child alone in a car to make a quick errand here...Not that I would do that, but I see a lot of people doing that. One lady did it at one of our local grocery stores. She left 3 children in her SUV, while she ran in to get some "quick" groceries. Guess what happened when she came out? A cop was waiting for her. He stood right next to the SUV talking to the kids the whole time she was in the store. Yep, she got fined.

 
Old 05-21-2004, 05:02 AM   #7
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GirlHarley HB User
Re: home alone- what is the right age?

I started allowing my son to go home after school at the age of 12. He adjusted fine...It was me who was at worked and stressed the whole 3 hours that he was home alone....He was to call me the moment he got home from school and if I didn't hear from him...I would be calling the house every five minutes till he answered. One time after he did call me he went and tooked a nap,,,I kept calling the house and was freaking out...I left work and rushed home, frantic, only to find my baby son sleeping so peacefully.

I had a no friends over rule till I got home from school till he was 14 - he was allowed 1 friend over (a neighbor) I got through those years..thank god.

He's 15 now...and I'm laid off...SO...I'm home in the AM to see him off to school and always home now when he 'comes right home from school" I'm loving this moment due to the years I missed out on not being home after school for him and I can see the difference in him too..

 
Old 05-26-2004, 11:19 PM   #8
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loreli26 HB User
Re: home alone- what is the right age?

I have had my daughter 11 and 1/2 years old stay home after school on her own for the past 3 weeks now.
She was skeptical of doing so at first, so we agreed to have her stay alone for a couple hours, then for 5, and now she is confident enough to be home when I work full time on the weekends.
I believe that in no way should you force them to do so before they are mature enough to take care of themselves, without going stir crazy and taking off to their friends' homes or calling you every hour while you're working.
Starting off with small amounts of time and gradually increasing it gave my daughter more confidence and also compelled her to help out with household duties, showing me that she was happier and willing to contribute to keeping our home in order
Good luck with your child too

 
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