Leaving My babies home...

Jamie - posted on 08/16/2010 ( 22 moms have responded )

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Ok, so I have an 11 year old boy and a 5 year old girl...I just started a new job that I'm super excited about. My shifts are graveyard shifts and I'm off work at 6:30 am. My husband works in the mornings and leaves for work by 6. I work less than 2 miles away from my house and my children don't wake until at least 8. I'm having anxiety about the 30 min lapse in time when they're gonna be home alone. My son has stayed at the house for an hour or so but he's never watched his sister with us not there...I believe everything will be fine considering they will be sleeping, but I'm still feeling like a bad mom at the moment. Does anybody have any words of encouragement...or thoughts that they could share with me???

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[deleted account]

Not to judge people, but I taught my son early how to be independent, meaning setting the alarm, using the stove, cooking minor things to eat, using the microwave. So for me it was a little easier to let him stay home with his sister. This may not work for everyone and believe me comments on her should not be judged. I believe it is up to that parent, who feels confident enough to allow that child some responsibilities. Now if my daughter was alot younger at the time, I too would have felt that he wasn't mature enough to be that responsible. Anyhow, good luck to you....

Kelly - posted on 01/11/2011

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I have a 12 year old son and a 3 1/3 year old daughter and I'm just not convinced he's responsible enough to watch her alone.

[deleted account]

Your not a bad parent if you choose to make this decision. Alot of people judge today and don't take into consideration the situation which brings us to make this decision. People shouldn't judge you, I don't.

My son has been staying home by himself (for 2 hours at a time) since he was 11 years old, (babysitting his little sister, who is three years younger then he is) and he has done a great job watching her. We live in a great neighborhood, my home has a security system and I work 15 minutes from my house. My son was well aware on how to cook at this time, if he got hungry, he would feed himself and his sister. This is not a choice I WANTED to make but HAD to make due to our financial situation.

So I wish you the best of luck.

Siobean - posted on 08/20/2010

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Sorry i just wouldnt do it and surely it is illegal,it is my country the UK,i have to work nights and for that hour between me getting home and my husband going to work,my mum comes and stays the night,its a lot of hassle but it gives me piece of mind,Probably not what you wanna hear,but kiddies are so precious

Jamie - posted on 08/19/2010

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Thank you all very much. Thanks you Serena, i know I'm a great mom and We are taking care of our children to the best of our ability...as any parent would do. I do have a video servalence...and 2 very good watch dogs that wouldnt let anything in...considering that my work is 2 minutes away from my house(literally)I would be able to make it home pretty quick. As for the stay at home comment above...I've been home for 11 years, this is my opportunity to have somewhat of an outside life...and a great career I cant really turn down. I'm very social and dont want to sit at home anymore...besides, my schedule works perfect for my kids...i never have to miss a thing:-) Hope ya'll understand...

Serena - posted on 08/19/2010

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First of all, you are not a bad mom. You are doing everything you can to provide for your family and don't let anyone on here tell you any different. Its hard for some people to understand the sacrifices others have to make for the betterment of their family. Its only 30 minutes and its not like its in the middle of the night. I like the idea of an alarm system someone had at least than you can feel a little better about it or even having it set up to beep when someone comes in or out, so your son knows when someone comes in the house. Good luck with everything :)

Danielle - posted on 08/18/2010

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I myself wouldn't do it. I would talk to a neighbour or something to come in for the 30 mins for $50 a week or something.. We have a 14 & 12 year old and barely do that..

Wendy - posted on 08/18/2010

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yes...its a toughie for you...but you make the best of what you have to do right?? We need to make a living, better life for the kids! the sacrifice we make now will not be for long! My 10 year old is fine alone...like a latchey kid. he knows the numbers...we have good neighbors! I was going to find a sitter for him but his rebel againsts that has given me the freedom to loosen the strings for awhile! Its summer and I can give him some trust too! good luck girl! don't forget to enjoy summer!

Shandy - posted on 08/18/2010

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yes I totally agree Moria I mean I know that this is secure for just moms but that dose not mean there are all good people out there or that they wont share it with somene that might try to hurt them good luck

Shaina - posted on 08/17/2010

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I understand that it can be hard to leave your children alone for 30 minutes but I was an only child who was raised by my grandmother who worked graveyard shift. I started staying home alone at night when I was 8 but I had saftey lists and procedures. Make sure to let both of them know what is going on, a list of phone numbers, and first aid procedures. In case of someone breaking in have them pick a hiding place, mine was under the bed and I had an older phone the you didn't have to plug into an outlet just the jack so I could still make a phone call. It is scary because there is alot of bad people out in the world but your son is old enough to understand what to do. I also would keep the phone on speaker with my cell if I had to walk out of the house and leave the kids in. I never left the yard but it helped. I wish you the best of luck.

Heidi - posted on 08/17/2010

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I thought it said 11 months old....then it would be possible to just make a safety plan for them in case of emergency.

Jamie - posted on 08/17/2010

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Thank you all very much for your input. My son is very mature and well aware of all the safety procedures. He has a cell phone with all the emergency numbers that he would possibly need. I live out in the county on 5 acres...my neighbors are really attentive to whats going on around our neighborhood so that parts good. They both have been explained whats going on and are totally fine with it. My daughter actually told me " Im sleeping so I dont care"! My son said he would get up and lay on the couch when dad leaves so he can hear his sister if she wakes. Again, thank you all very much!

Bridgette - posted on 08/16/2010

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Depending upon where you live... that could be illegal. I know some places children under 12 can't be left home alone. I would check with someone on that. Can you work through your lunch break to be able to be home earlier? Can your husband adjust his schedule by 30 minutes? Do you have someone like an older neighbor who would sit in the living room in the mornings in exchange for lawn care or something like that?

I am VERY cautious about leaving children that young to watch after another child. You may have to get creative to find a solution. I would invest in an alarm system just in case. If you live in an area that gets AT&T, Verizon, or T-Mobile. I know a great alarm company that doesn't need a phone line. I don't work for them but we have had them for 2 years and NO complaints about them.

Michelle - posted on 08/16/2010

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Where we live children as young as 11 can get their babysitting certificate and start babysitting at night. Make sure your son knows both mommy and daddy will be gone during that time period so that if he gets up he is not upset because your gone and this goes for both the 11 and the 5 year old....make sure your 11 yr old has a list of emergency numbers just in case. Lock all doors tell him not to open the door to anyone unless it is mommy or daddy. Our rule at our house is if I am not here my kids stay in doors with them locked and don't answer the phone unless it is my cell, my husbands or their grandma's. Don't feel bad the reality is 30 mins only seems like a long time in an emergency. and the chances of your kids waking up before you get home is pretty slim.

Jozzelle - posted on 08/16/2010

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I don't think that sounds bad at all, I mean basically as long as both you and your husband have a key and lock the door and there are fire alarms, both of which are necessities anyways. But if you're still really worried about it you could always look into the local CPR/babysitting certificates and minimum age requirement for your son.

Amanda - posted on 08/16/2010

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Check your local laws with DCF/CAS to find out the age a child can be left to take care of another child. In my area a child has to be at least 12 years old before they can be left alone, and they may watch up to 2 other children, but no longer then 4 hours, and never after midnight.

[deleted account]

To help make a plan with your son about what to do if there is a problem. Have your work number, cell numbers, etc posted by the phone.
If you have a neighbor you trust talk with them about whether it would be okay for the kids to come to them if something were to occur.

They are 11 and 5 years old. There shouldn't be much worry. Children where I live are allowed to be left alone for short periods (less then 3 hours) on their own if the parents feel they are ready as young as the age of 10 years old.
You are not being a bad parent. This is the reality of our world where both parents need to work. And unless you are blessed with close by family or friends, you will not find someone to baby sit or that short period of time.

Shandy - posted on 08/16/2010

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I would not feel right with it my self I have a 7 year old and a 11 month old and the law says that they are not aloud to be left alone until 13 but that is just my oppion god luk

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