10yr old son

Desiree - posted on 12/11/2014 ( 4 moms have responded )

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Hi, I'm leaving my son of 10 yrz old alone at home while I'm at work? When I get home, he tried to do the cleaning, even cooked dinner in the microwave (wors) even made me a cup of coffee when he saw how tired I am! Omw! Is it wrong of me leaving him alone, or is it teaching him being independant?

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Sarah - posted on 12/11/2014

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I think you are probably covering the bases as best you can, but Charlotte makes an excellent point about the What ifs? However, life is full of what ifs? and you can't predict the future. If you balance the risk versus the benefit of your choices and you feel risk does not outweigh the benefit, then it is your choice. There are benefits to him being alone, he is learning time management, basic cooking skills, to not be afraid to be alone and to enjoy his own company. Maybe one time he could go to friend and one day someone stay with him? Then he'd be alone just once a week.
I would praise him for the cleaning and compliment his thoughtfulness for making you coffee, but reassure him that he does not need to be the man of the house.
Just be sure that if something happens to you; your car breaks down, you have an accident or the roads are awful that he has a plan in place of who to call and when to do it.

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Mommabird - posted on 12/11/2014

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I think you posted this twice, I already responded to the other one but it didnt have anyones comments yet. Anyways, I basically said the same thing Sarah did. Check to see what the minimum age is for your state. Ours used to be 12 but currently there isnt one set. Not saying your wrong for leaving him home alone but I just know that ME personally..I would feel absolutely horrible if anything happened to my 10 yr old daughter while she was home alone and noone could get to her in time. Examples: choking, burnt herself, had a burglar break in. Thats just a few.
Do you have any family that could stay with him or a neighbor that checks on him often each day?

Desiree - posted on 12/11/2014

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The neighbours are very caring! Yes I reachable at all times! His meals are prepared and frozen! That's veg, rice etc! He only warm that up for him! So yes, nutrition is good! About the hourz, I'm working from 8 to 5 o'clock! So he don't see me during the day! Only 3 times a week! Luckily I do not work on weekends! He does not have access to internet! His phone only makes calls, receive calls and sms'es! He does his homework also on his own! I only check it! Than try to identify gaps! He passed with flying colours!

Sarah - posted on 12/11/2014

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There are a lot of factors you need to consider: How long is he alone? Is there a neighbor he can go to if he is scared or has a problem? How often does this happen? does he see you after school or does he come home to an empty house? Is he able to do his homework independently? Are you accessible 100% of the time, or is a set emergency contact arranged? Have you checked with our local law enforcement agency or CPS as to the age for leaving a child alone? If he is making dinner in the microwave, is he getting proper nutrition?
In my area, the police department recognizes that "latch key kids" are an accepted part of our society. Those are kids who come home to an empty house and care for themselves until mom or dad gets home. My sister is a sergeant at that PD and she says 10 is a reasonable age for short term alone time. I leave my own 10 yo home alone once and a while, but we have tons of neighborhood support.
While I respect there are times it is unavoidable. I don't think a 10 yo should be preparing meals for himself or spending a day or evening alone more than once or twice a month. When kids get bored they start experimenting with the internet, drugs, alcohol and shoplifting.
Do I think you are wrong? Not necessarily, but you must have a safety plan and a balance. He is still just a child and he needs your presence even if he does not need your help with tasks.

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