Supervision, too much or too little - need advice please

Shannintipton - posted on 07/20/2011 ( 171 moms have responded )

36,025

50

681

two doors down we have a 10 yr old boy and my son is 8. when they go to the boys house they have more freedom than what i would like. they play out in the front yard with water pistols near a corner that is very dangerous. now i find out they are walking to the park only. it is about a quarter mile so it is not very far. the mother also leaves her 10 yr old son home alone sometimes. not sure for how long. it turns out my son was over at there house one of these times. i offer to let them play at my house but they find it boring because i dont let the older boy tackle my son or let them run around the house. i wonder if i am over reacting? i didnt even think it was legal to leave your son home alone. i am not sure what to do. but i am going to talk to her about it. even if i am over reacting i dont care. so now i guess this is more of a vent. thanks for listening. :)

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Janice - posted on 07/24/2011

37

17

0

Find out first what the legal age for a child to be left home alone in your state. Then calmly ask her what her beliefs are about the supervision and then offer your beliefs. Ask her if she could please respect your wishes and if she cannot, tell her that the boys need to play at your house or not at all. Do not raise your voice---be matter of fact and try to respect her by listening when she speaks because that is what you deserve.

Kirsty - posted on 08/20/2011

15

2

0

You're a good mummy! Be over protective/protective will never hurt your children xoxox

Julie - posted on 07/27/2011

2

3

0

I dont think you are overeacting,every parent is different just like every child,you wont be 65 and have your son saying ''mom I wish you had watched me better because so and so did this to me'' I have a 10year old and ive been acused of being over protective,but by ten i had used drugs got a tatoo a peircing etc,My child? he is a straight a honor roll student never had a demerit,respectful,hardworking,GOOD boy,who cares what others think you only have one chance to do this parent dealio right,no redos.trust your instincts do whats best for your baby your his mother you know what it is. Julia Castro

Toni - posted on 07/24/2011

7

1

0

I am extremely protective of my kids. There are very few homes they are allowed to stay at without me or their dad present. Children, and their parents are always welcome at our home. I personally know so many people who were molested as children. It's absolutely heartbreaking. Nothing is worth the risk.

Suzanne - posted on 07/23/2011

4

5

0

My kids are 12, 12, and 11. I know lots of families like the one you are referring too and my rules are very different from theirs. I make my rules clear from the beginning. No walking ANYWHERE by themselves. Kids have too many choices these days, they need rules and boundaries. Parents think I am way to strict, but as long as my kids are safe, that's fine by me. If they don't accept my lifestyle, then they can find somebody else to play with their kids. I thought there was a minimum age to leave kids home alone, but I can't find anything supporting that information. Do what you feel is right in your heart. Only you know what is best for your son!

This conversation has been closed to further comments

171 Comments

View replies by

Shannintipton - posted on 09/02/2011

36,025

50

681

I want to thank all you ladies for taking the time to respond to my question. It have been very helpful. I sorry I didnt get back to all of you but I did read them all. Thanks again. I am going to close this thread now. Maybe I will talk with you soon. :)

Katie - posted on 09/02/2011

28

51

2

ur not.lol. 1 it is actually illlegal (at least where I am) to leave a child at home and even worse in charge of younger children, though each to their own. 2.mummy instinct can't be beaten 3 who cares if u are or not..this is ur child. Of course they find it boring..there are restictions...god forbid children have any of those today..lol, long story short...ur child will actually respect u more for pulling him up (though he will never say this) and his mate will be jelouse that someone actually gives a shit enough to make sure he's adiquitly supervised (even though he will be all tough about it).

good luck, stick to ur guns

Christina - posted on 09/01/2011

9

0

0

You are, by no means, over reacting!! I do not feel a 10yo should be left home alone or allowed to do those type things. Its your child and you know whats best. I do not allow my kids outside without supervision or too a friends house unless I know for sure what there rules are, and that the parent will be there to monitor them. Thats what a good mom does.. I do not care how responsible one thinks there 10 yo is... You are doing a great job.. He will thank you in the end...

Rena - posted on 08/29/2011

25

16

0

I totally get that you want to protect your children.. we all do. But, that being said, I believe that we have to give our kids some degree of freedom so that they learn how to handle that freedom. Unfortunately even the most protective parents sometimes experience heartbreak! We want so badly to control eveything in life, and it just is not possible. I also believe that kids that aren't allowed some independence at a fairly young age are more likely to try extreme sports, etc. when they are older in order to get that thrill they didn't get by walking to the corner independently when they were 10. Teach them well and pray for the best.

Ashley - posted on 08/28/2011

24

0

1

Being over protective is what keeps our kids alive ! When it comes to my kid, I don`t care if someone thinks I am over protective or doesn`t approve of parenting ways. Because what it comes down to is, If something happens to my son it`s I who will be heart broken, Not them.

KRYSTA - posted on 08/28/2011

23

74

2

i dont think so .. legal age to be home alone is 13 kids shouldnt be running in the house .. that is the living area not the wrestling area ,... thats what outside or basements are for !! i have 4 kids and 9 through 12 and i dont let them go anywhere unless i know the parent/parents and the things they let their kids do ! i dont think you are over reacting at all !

Maria - posted on 08/24/2011

1

0

0

That is ridiculous! No, you are not over reacting... anyone under the age of 12 should not be left home alone unsupervised PERIOD. What if something happens to them? Who will be at fault? The irresponsible parents.

Krissandra - posted on 08/20/2011

2

0

0

I dont think you are over-reacting. My 7 year old daughter always plays with the nieghbors kids: 1 girl who is 7 and 2 boys who are 5 & 3. they are always playing outside in the backyard by themselves without supervision then they always go to the front yard to play and ride their bikes. my daughter gets mad @ me cause I wont let her go to the front yard without supervision I tell her she can stay in the backyard with me or go inside. she also gets mad @ me when I tell her its time to go in cause I have to start dinner. she says but the other kids are outside by thereselves why cant I. I tell her she cant because I love her and that is the only way I know how to protect her...she gets over it..

Maggie - posted on 08/16/2011

818

24

47

well you're right about that, I suppose. Every child is different and the same rules/rewards/consequences don't work for every child.

Sherri - posted on 08/16/2011

9,593

15

391

You evidently don't like many of the rules that need to apply for all children in the public school system. So obviously because of this it makes a lot of sense you homeschool.

Sherri - posted on 08/16/2011

9,593

15

391

Good lord it is to ensure that every small child is dropped off at the right stop to a parent and not dropped off to a potentially empty house or a stop that they weren't supposed to get off at.



It is simple safety for ALL children that is common sense. When you are dealing with hundreds of children you can Not make exceptions for some, across the board needs to be the same. As it should be.



Policies are made to protect all the children and are done for NO other purpose.



I completely see now why you homeschool. This is not a punishment. Their are many rules put in place for all children not those they pick and choose it is appropriate for. It is the same way in my daycare. You can and can't do certain things. Same punishments for all, same schedules for all and no room for variations from this.

Sherri - posted on 08/16/2011

9,593

15

391

Well in the fall and winters regardless if their is a car in the driveway you would never have a door open because of the cold. So that isn't always a way to tell. Also a lot of people around here have really long driveways and a bus driver would never be able to tell if a parent is home and some bus stops have multiple children and aren't directly in front of someone's front door. So to be safe for ALL children this needs to be the rule in our district.

They just can't make exceptions for some children. It needs to kind of an all or nothing so that every child is safe

I as a parent of a kindergartner this year am completely okay with taking two minutes to get my child off the bus. It is not only for the safety of my child but every other child as well.

Maggie - posted on 08/16/2011

818

24

47

Sherri - if the front door is open and there's a car in the driveway they shouldn't let the child off right in front of the house? It seems ridiculous. I could see him get off the bus if I looked at the door. So yes, I think making an adult walk down to the stop is ridiculous. I feel like there is no room for common sense in that rule.

Maggie - posted on 08/16/2011

818

24

47

I wouldn't leave my 5 year old home alone but I would let him walk from the bus stop to the house. It's literally 10 feet from the stop to the door.

Sherri - posted on 08/16/2011

9,593

15

391

Really because I am extremely thankful that in an emergency I know my kids are safe because they wouldn't just leave them to their own devices and think it was okay to leave a elementary school child to watch themselves.

A 5yr old is not safe to be allowed to stay on their own. Heck no elementary school child is. It isn't about treating them like babies, it is about making sure they are safe.

Heck our kids aren't even allowed to walk to school until they are in 7th grade here. Until then they MUST be bussed or driven to school by a parent. No if's and's or but's, and until you are in 5th grade a parent must meet the bus so they can be assured an adult is at home.

Maggie - posted on 08/16/2011

818

24

47

well I think it's ridiculous that a child can't get off the bus at their driveway and be trusted to walk up the sidewalk to their house. I'm glad we homeschool because I'd have a real issue with having to stop what I'm doing to go 10 feet down the road to the bus stop. I'd also take issue with him being taken back to the school if I wasn't right there. My kids aren't babies and I don't expect them to be treated like they are.

Shannintipton - posted on 08/16/2011

36,025

50

681

Same here. They need a parent to release that child from the kindergarten class.

Sherri - posted on 08/16/2011

9,593

15

391

Maggie that depends where you live. Our kindergarten kids can NOT even be let off the bus unless a parent is there to meet them if not the child is taken back to the school, where they will be kept until a parent or adult on the release list can pick up said child. This is the case for all elementary school children.

Maggie - posted on 08/16/2011

818

24

47

it is not illegal to leave your child at home, not at any age! I have seen a kindergarten child get off the bus and go home to any empty house.
As for the visits to the other house - you need to set some rules. If you are not comfortable with your son walking to the park then let him know that he may not do it - even if he's over the other house. If you are not comfortable with him being at the other house while there are no adults then let him know he has to come home if there is no adult or the adult leaves. If you are not comfortable with them playing in the other boys yard then let them play in yours. Boys are naturally energetic and like to roughhouse. If your son isn't complaining about being hurt by the older boys' tackling then let them play. He's probably giving it back just as much.

Set rules and stick with them but give your son a little freedom. No need to keep him away from the older boy altogether.

Shannintipton - posted on 08/13/2011

36,025

50

681

I would NEVER kick her in the head on purpose. We maybe it is because it happened again. Since her shots she has been sticking to my like glue. Every time I turn around I fall over her. :/

Kirsty - posted on 08/13/2011

15

2

0

Ah ha ha ha ha, hilarious so, so, so ,so cute. Typical child lol. If only someone filmed that. Funniest home videos

Kirsty - posted on 08/13/2011

15

2

0

Tricky one, see I'm so over protective and I wouldn't think twice. All I would say is follow your heart. You're a mum and u know what's best. Um i think can leave them alone at a certain age.

Janet - posted on 08/12/2011

12

5

2

She is tough and we all have our moments lol I had plenty lol and it was my pleasure. Enjoy being a mum believe me the years will fly and before you know it they are all grown up.....

Shannintipton - posted on 08/12/2011

36,025

50

681

Should I still pat myself on the back because I just kicked (lightly) my 4 yr old daughter in the head. I was flopping on the bed and she was RIGHT behind me. My foot kicked her right in the head. Poor thing. She apologized. Ha ha

Janet - posted on 08/12/2011

12

5

2

The thing is you have let them be kids and do what kids do just set the rules (when you have other kids over of course). You have done the right thing not just for your boy but for the young boy that was home on his own. Its not good for a young boy to be left on their own at home no supervision. So give yourself a pat on the back

Shannintipton - posted on 08/12/2011

36,025

50

681

Oh man I am so jealous. I wish I were that kind of mom. Nope that is not me. I will have them over but I dont like them running around. I am a freak. They were playing in the backyard one time. We have a swing/slide/tree house. I was such a nervous wreck. One, I was afraid they were going to get hurt, and Two, I was afraid the older one was going to break it. I mean come on. It is meant for abuse. In our neighborhood, I am the Wii and computer games mom. When they have to go to the dr, hair, nails or need a break, they come to my house. I was having a problem which this post was inspired by. But actually it is not such a problem anymore. She no longer leaves him home. I cant help but feel a little responsible for that. Right or wrong. I think this because of what the other boy always says to me. My mom is home you can call her. LOL

Janet - posted on 08/12/2011

12

5

2

When my children were younger I always had them and any child in the neighborhood at my place. I use to get out there with them to play cricket. I put on smoko. The rule was if anyone came over they had to come and say hello to me and goodbye if they were leaving. The other rule was if they argued and they could not solve the problem they would have to come and get me and I would make the final decision. (as a referee) If that didn't work then whom ever was arguing had to leave. Oh the other rule was no swearing as that was not tolerated either. Would you believe that I had all of the kids on the block and none of them wanted to leave. I had them just about every weekend and holidays.

Shannintipton - posted on 08/12/2011

36,025

50

681

Wow ladies, sorry I had no idea you all were responding. I wasnt getting all my notifications. I want to thank you all for taking the time to help me with my issues. It has been very helpful and encouraging. Thank you so much. :)

Kristi - posted on 08/12/2011

87

13

1

At ten I don't think it's illegal for them to be left for an hour or two, but he should definitely not have friends over...and I wouldn't let my son go over there either. You can never tell if he will be unsupervised and it's better safe than sorry! 8 is too young! And the park...it's debatable. I used to go to the park when I was 8 with my friends, but I lived on base and it was very safe....nowadays I wouldn't let my kids go all the way to the park by themselves and they are 10 and 13....it's about 3/4 mile away. But that's up to you....

Jen - posted on 08/10/2011

1

0

0

If the 10 yr old is having behavioural problems, we as parents can't blame him because it all comes down to his childhood background. Blame on his parents instead. Children behave certain ways due to their parents' parenting skills. I actually feel sorry for the boy as he is being neglected so often by the very people who are supposed to love and care for him. Therefore he is left with all the freedom to do just anything and no one around to tell him whether it's wrong or right. Instead of avoiding the boy and not letting him play with your son, why not invite him to play with your son at your house where you can keep your eyes on them and think of games that all 3 of you can play together i.e. board games, etc. You may find out that the boy is actually just seeking for attention and someone to care for him. Don't do what his mother does by ignoring him or he will think that all mothers are the same, show him that you are actually concerned for his well-being. It's not too late for him to learn that not all mothers ignore their children and leave them at home by themselves. Give it a try and wish you all the best to you, your son and the boy as well.

Susan - posted on 08/08/2011

2

0

0

I don't think you're overreacting at all...however, I think if the 10 year old is a responsible child, I don't see any harm in leaving them home, to play INSIDE only, while you're away, grocery shopping or doing small errands....

Betty - posted on 08/07/2011

2

1

0

As he reaches teenage years especially, just know who he's with and don't be afraid to say no, and when you do, stick to it. Follow your gut, if it feels wrong it probably is.

Bonnie - posted on 08/06/2011

4,813

22

261

Shannin, you are not overreacting. 10 years old is too young IMO. I think you have to be at least 12 or 13 to stay home alone. And yes, if his mom calls you looking for her son, which means she obviously has no idea where he is, that is not a good sign. Just say, it is my house or nowhere. I'm sure your son can find better kids to play with.

Raechil - posted on 08/06/2011

79

0

2

It is illegal to leave your child at home alone if they are under the age of 13 in the state of texas. And I dont think you are overreacting. I personally wouldn't allow my son to go over there. I believe for them to go to someones houuse ya'll need to have the same basic principles in the way you handle your kids otherwise if they are more lenient when your son gets older he'll start rebelling because his friends mom doesnt enforce rules.
Now the tackling thing is going to happen... Thats how boys play Your best bet there is to teach them how to wrestle without actually hurting each other... But remember he is your son and you do what you feel is right as a mother.
Hope it helped and good luck!!
(My sons barely two months so I'm not there yet but I have friends with kids that walk all over them thanks to outside influences)

Elizabeth - posted on 08/04/2011

1

13

0

I understand your feelings. I think your instincts are right on. Whether your children get why you do it now, doesn't matter. Most important is what you do to keep your children safe. Every parent parents differently, whether out of confidence or trust or lack of fear or you name it, ...you could speak with her, but I'm not sure what you'll get out of it. I would suggest perhaps, that maybe you and your son take a break from this neighbor for awhile. In all due respect to her, she, as the one in charge, should respect you and ask you if it would be alright if "the boys...."...I'm not discounting her parenting, but I am discounting her consideration. Again, which is why, I doubt any conversation really will change things. But the conversations you can have, are with your son...there are three rules that we teach our boys: 1) safety 2) respect 3) follow directions. You could tell your son that if he's ot comfortable telling his friend or the parent that "he can't play that, or do that," teach him to use you as the scapegoat.

He might not appreciate all that you're doing for him right now, but something tells me that your Grandchildren, someday will have very watchful parents that understand safety and perimeters...and in the long run, you're doing a great job!! Best of luck!

Brooke - posted on 08/03/2011

1

0

0

You are not over reacting go with what is not feeling right put your foot down while you can tell him he can only have him over to your house there is a big difference between eight and ten years old it may not sound much but it is at that age keep a tight reign while you can

Purplestar_89 - posted on 08/03/2011

7

5

0

not over reactin not one bit but what i like to do is play games find things to do with kids i do the same with my niece and nephews doing it with your child will be you guys closer togeather even though im pregnant we go swimming togeather best of luck

Kirsty - posted on 07/30/2011

12

0

0

This is neglect on these children, I would never let my children go there and I would telephone children's services immediately as the two children are at risk. As a foster parent I know of many children under the age of 13 who have been taken into care because of neglect, the same neglect as these children that of not taking care and attention of an under age child, those children need help so please give it.

Shannintipton - posted on 07/29/2011

36,025

50

681

Thanks Betty, can you give me any specifics to watch out for????

Betty - posted on 07/29/2011

2

1

0

I would only let them play at your house. There is not enough supervision at the friends house. Even as he gets older always know who they are with, where they are and stick to your guns. Say what you mean and mean what you say. I thought I did all that and found out the hard way I didn't do it enough.

[deleted account]

Actually, you don't have to be very careful, because it's not your job to know the law. It's theirs. If you are honestly concerned about the safety and wellbeing of a child there is no danger to you in making a call. They will determine if it warrants an intervention. The squeaky wheel gets the oil, and multiple calls from different people are going to get some action taken. But never be afraid that you will get in trouble for calling. As a licensed child care provider I am a mandatory reporter, and I could lose my license for not making the call. I think what if you don't make the call and something happens to that child? Will it trouble you?

Debbie - posted on 07/26/2011

8

0

0

I would most definetly keep my child at home. If he wants to play with the boy next door then let it be at your home. If I trusted the other mother then it wouldn't be an issue, but obviously you don't and for good reason.

Vanessa - posted on 07/26/2011

47

32

2

Every child os different as far as maturing & being responsible to be hime alone. Our 9 year old is holme alone for a few hours here & there by himself. He respects are rules & follows them, therefore we trust him. Like if we are going out to eat & he does not feel like coming we give him the option at times but not always by any means. I would try my best to make my house more "fun" so they will want to stay at your home to play.

Rhea - posted on 07/26/2011

4

5

0

You are absolutely not overreacting. At the end of the day, you are responsible for your children and their safety. Unless you trust the other parent and they have the same priorities about their safety, then its best that you have them over your house.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms