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MissesJai posted 8/7/2013 11:15 AM

I know this has been discussed before so I apologize for the repetitiveness of this question. What age is appropriate to start leaving kids home alone? I'll give you my situation:

INAB is going out of town for the weekend - leaving Friday around 1130 or so. DS18 has to work Friday from 11-4, thus leaving DS11 home alone until I get home from work (around 6pm). That would mean he would be home alone from about 1130-6. He's an Aspie, and I don't know if he'll have a meltdown from being alone for that long. Also, I don't work close to home plus I take the train to work so if an emergency were to occur, I couldn't just rush home. Not to mention, even if I drove in to work, I work and live in LA - which means I'll be stuck in LA traffic for who knows how long. I could leave work early and this would be a non-issue but I wanted to consult y'all first.

The truth is I'm not comfortable with the idea of him being home alone for that long. Hubby says I need to let go of my grip. Am I being too overprotective here?

ajsmom posted 8/7/2013 11:23 AM

Listen to your mom voice. Mine is never wrong.

From how you've described this, it isn't a matter of you loosening your grip. It's a matter of his safety and comfort, and if he's never been left alone, that (IMO) is too long a stretch for the first time.

ETA: Given your lack of availability in an emergency, that enough is reason not to.

I'd arrange something else.


[This message edited by ajsmom at 11:24 AM, August 7th (Wednesday)]

MissesJai posted 8/7/2013 11:28 AM

thanks ajsmom. I agree, it is too long of a stretch of time. My mom voice is screaming to leave work early, so that's what I am going to do. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't being irrational. He's been left alone for no more than an hour but everyone has been close and could get home in minutes if something were to happen.

Amazonia posted 8/7/2013 11:38 AM

Is there a neighbor he could stay with? Or who could pop in several times throughout the day?

It is quite a long stretch for a first time home alone.

MissesJai posted 8/7/2013 11:40 AM

no, Ama. We're not that close with our neighbors. I was hoping to drop him off at my mom's but she already takes care of my 2 nieces so having him there in addition to the girls is just too much for her.

Amazonia posted 8/7/2013 11:51 AM

Hmm. What about a school friend?

MissesJai posted 8/7/2013 11:53 AM

I hadn't thought of that - there is one neighbor who may be an option. We are close with them - all of our kids have gone to school together at some point. I guess I can discuss it with them and see.

caregiver9000 posted 8/7/2013 12:12 PM

You know your kid. Bottom line.

My gf's son is an Aspie. He LOVES to be left home alone and has been since age 10? maybe?. When she asked why he likes to be home alone he told her, "Cause I don't have to wear pants."

tushnurse posted 8/7/2013 12:15 PM

My oldest is a hairs breadth away from being aspie, so I get your concerns. I would start working up to longer periods of time alone, so when this comes up again you can confidently leave him.

Quite honestly my DS was easier to leave alone than my daughter. All you had to do was make sure he had food and drink, and hand him an xbox controller. He was in heaven. No one to interupt him, no one to stop him. I did start leaving him home alone at 11. (With someone close should something come up). By the time he was 12 I was comfortable without having someone close.

Amazonia posted 8/7/2013 12:44 PM

When she asked why he likes to be home alone he told her, "Cause I don't have to wear pants."

Hey, this is why I love living alone so much. Don't knock it. Pants are uncomfortable.

MissesJai posted 8/7/2013 13:04 PM

"Cause I don't have to wear pants."
I love that kid

We started leaving DS18 home alone when he was 13. No issues.

start working up to longer periods of time alone
I like this idea.

jrc1963 posted 8/7/2013 13:15 PM

The truth is I'm not comfortable with the idea of him being home alone for that long.

Personally I think this is the only answer you need. Listen to your mom voice this time and work on leaving him alone here and there so you're comfortable next time.

MissesJai posted 8/7/2013 13:27 PM

thanks jrc.... It's good to know that I'm not being an irrational helicopter mom

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