How young is too young...? | allnurses

How young is too young...?

  1. 0 leave your kid at home alone over a night shift?
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    29 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  nici1978 profile page
    personally i would not leave a kid alone at home regardless of age
    applewhitern likes this.
  4. Visit  rumwynnieRN profile page
    My parents started doing that when I was 12 and my brother was 6. The good thing about not knowing how to cook at that age was 1) we were too scared to cook anything and 2) we were rather content with the TV, internet (at 28.8 kbps!) and the telephone. To be more specific about 1, my brother and I were pretty adept with the microwave since we were 5 or 6 (with adult supervision of course). That or they bought food for us before leaving for work. Mostly the latter.

    Like I said though, my brother and I weren't going to burn down the house, and we were TV zombies. We also gorged ourselves on junk food -- like fruit rollups.
    Last edit by rumwynnieRN on Jan 29, '13 : Reason: changed "were" to "weren't."
    loriangel14 and Fiona59 like this.
  5. Visit  rumwynnieRN profile page
    Oh, and both my parents worked night shift, 12 hours, plus my mom called every 5 minutes. We didn't want to be interrupted while we watched whatever we were watching.
  6. Visit  Fiona59 profile page
    How old is your "kid"?

    I only left my children overnight when the youngest was 10. I worked 8 hour nights. They were still asleep when I came home. The xbox tournaments ran late.
    DizzyLizzyNurse and loriangel14 like this.
  7. Visit  solneeshka profile page
    Thanks for the replies. He's 11. He's not ready now, but my child care situation feels like a house of cards. It's one shift a week, Friday nights. There would be much junk food and t.v., but that I can live with. It wouldn't even cross my mind if I had alternatives. Sigh...
  8. Visit  brillohead profile page
    Whenever the child is ready. Some kids are ready at ten. Some kids aren't ready at seventeen!
    tewdles and roser13 like this.
  9. Visit  mappers profile page
    It really does depend on the kid. 11 is probably too young. My 13 year old doesn't even like us to go to bed before her if her sister is not home, so she wouldn't be able to. I might consider letting my 16 yo and 13 yo stay home alone overnight now. My 16 YO would be up almost all night reading or watching something on her computer. My 13 yo would fall asleep on the couch in the same room as 16 yo. They'd be OK together.
  10. Visit  nurseywifeymommy1 profile page
    My mom left us at 12 & 7. My bro was the oldest and could cook. We survived!! We were like the other post- we watched TV. We lived in the country. I played outside when the weather was good with the dogs.
  11. Visit  AnonRNC profile page
    He's a "he" (boys mature later than girls) and there's only one of him. That's two strikes.

    On the other hand, just make sure he respects locked front/back doors. Give him enough junk food and TV that he won't think of trying to cook.

    Odds are VERY in favor of him being just fine. On the OTHER other hand, you may never get over the guilt.
  12. Visit  loriangel14 profile page
    I left mine alone when they were 10 & 11. They were fine.It depends on the kid.
    Fiona59 likes this.
  13. Visit  mustlovepoodles profile page
    I know I wouldn't have been comfortable leaving my oldest son alone for an entire shift at age 11. No way. I didn't start letting my kids stay by themselves over night until they turned 15. And even then it was with a LOT of outside support, neighbors checking in, phone calls. I'll never forget, one time my oldest son decided to surprise us by mowing the grass. He managed to get the mower started, but he ran over a nest of ground bees who ate him up! OMG! I was at least an hour from home and he was hysterical (he was 16.) I couldn't tell over the phone if he was just panicked or having an allergic reaction. Had to call a neighbor to go over to the house and check him out. Poor kid, he was so upset he couldn't even find the benedryl--which was sitting right on the shelf at eye level. Thankfully, everything turned out okay, but it showed me that we had a serious weakness in our emergency plans. I spent a good bit of time teaching and training the kids about basic first aid & recognizing and managing emergencies.
    Enthused RN and Orange Tree like this.
  14. Visit  proud nurse profile page
    I have boy/girl twins, so they looked out for each other. I really thought my daughter would be the one who'd take charge, but my son surprised me. I started leaving them home for a few hours here and there when they were about 11, to go shopping or to a meeting. It wasn't until they were 12 that I'd leave them home overnight while I'd work a night shift when my husband would be at a convention or something. I only worked 6 minutes from home then. I'd leave for work at 2215, call at midnight, come home on my lunch break around 0300, call at 0600, be home around 0730.