At what age did you feel comfortable leaving your child alone in a room?

Angela - posted on 07/02/2012 ( 4 moms have responded )

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At what age did you feel comfortable leaving your child alone in one room, while you were in another? For example, I left my 5-year old twins downstairs in the den watching tv, while I went upstairs to take a shower. I left the door open, but it's still unlikely that I would hear anything besides yelling from the bottom of the stairs. The shower took about 10 min. I checked on them periodically, so they weren't alone for more than 15 min. at a time.
My husband thinks I should have taken them upstairs and let them watch TV in our room, right outside the bathroom. I feel like they're old enough to be left alone in a room for a while (especially when in their tv-zombie state!)
What are your thoughts?

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Amy - posted on 07/02/2012

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My son has been left alone since he was 3 years old for 5-10 minutes at a time. He's now 6 and since he was 5 could be awake for an hour or longer before he wakes his father up. He is so afraid he's going to get hurt we don't have to worry about him doing anything other than watching tv. But it really depends on your child's personality. My daughter is 2 I don't leave her more than 2-3 minutes unless her brother is keeping an eye on her, but she's trouble. She likes to color the walls and get into things but sometimes I have to get laundry situated or dinner going so it's safer to leave her then bring her with me. Ultimately you know your children's personalities, if they are typically well behaved and don't get into too much trouble then I would think you'd be ok.

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Jill - posted on 07/08/2012

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Perfect use of the old tv-babysitter, IMO. Unless you have kids that are particularly prone to mischief, I think you did just fine with 5 year olds.

Carol - posted on 07/03/2012

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At 5 most kids are in school for 6-8 hours a day. In addition to all the group activitites that they're expected to do without a lot of help, they're expected to use the bathroom alone and walk to the front office alone to hand in reports, etc. When my kids were little I'd lock the doors and tell them not to answer them for any reason. I think I started off small, like when I had to use the bathroom or just be in a different room. As we all got comfy with it I was able to take showers. Mine were usually pretty quick if my husband wasn't home and I'd holler out the door as soon as the water was off and ask if they were okay. The oldest was probably late 2 or 3 when I'd leave him alone for a little bit. The youngest was probably 2 if his brother was around. It's all a blur, but that sounds about the right age. The oldest never slept, so he learned early on to entertain himself (safely). He was reading the alarm clock when he was a late 2 y.o. and knew that he wasn't allowed out of his room until it was at least 6 am unless he needed the bathroom. He'd look at books or play. We were right across the hall and I'd hear if he was into anything. Yours are plenty old enough as long as they don't kill each other if left alone (I'm a twin and we fought constantly).

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