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Would you leave a responsible 9yo and 5.5yo at home alone for about 10 minutes?

Poll Results: Would you leave a responsible 9yo and 5.5yo home alone for 10 minutes?

 
  • 58% (107)
    Yes, if they have proven themselves to be responsible
  • 27% (51)
    Not under any circumstances at those ages
  • 14% (26)
    Maybe
184 Total Votes  
post #1 of 71
Thread Starter 
If you had a 9yo and 5.5yo who were both very responsible, would you leave them at home to drive exactly 1mi to the bank atm machine? Approximately 10 minutes total time.
post #2 of 71
I would leave the big kid if he didn't want to go and take the 5yo with me.
post #3 of 71
If I knew I could trust the 9 year old to handle the 5.5 year old and any issues that came up, then yes I would. DD is 11 and she has watched DS for short stretches (no longer then an hour).
post #4 of 71
I'd leave the 9yo home alone, but I wouldn't let a child babysit (no adult around at all) before age 11, no matter how responsible the children are. Some kids wouldn't be ready to babysit at 11, but 11 is my cutoff point (I wouldn't feel comfy letting a 10yo babysit, no matter how responsible that particular 10yo was.)

However, I wouldn't freak out if I found out that a neighbor or friend was doing this, the way I'd get upset and concerned if a friend was leaving a 5yo to babysit a 2yo (that's CPs worthy IMO). If it's a friend of yours who's letting their 9yo babysit, I advise you to keep your mouth shut. If you're the one considering doing it, I'd advise you not to.
post #5 of 71
I would. I have.

Of course the usual disclaimers apply:it depends on the children in question- their personalities, maturity level, etc.
post #6 of 71
I would trust that the kids could handle themselves. But, I would want some backup just in case something happened to you on the way to or from the bank. So, i'd do it, if I knew someone could get there quickly, in case of an emergency.
post #7 of 71
honestly, it could be illegal...here kids are allowed to be home alone at 8, but not with a younger child (babysitting) til 13 I believe.
My biggest problem with your scenario is that you will be driving and while it is only 1 mile, and you may be the best driver ever, all it takes is one idiot or misjudgement and you could be broke down or in an accident and gone for hours.
I wouldn't hesitate to do it myslef if I were walking down the street to the neighbors or something...I'm sure I probably even did when my DDs were a little younger...

Also, like PP have said, I would leave the 9 year old and take the 5 if it were me

ETA...i agree with what nextcommercial said completely!
post #8 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post
I would trust that the kids could handle themselves. But, I would want some backup just in case something happened to you on the way to or from the bank. So, i'd do it, if I knew someone could get there quickly, in case of an emergency.


The 10 minutes isn't a big deal, but if you were in a fender bender, or there was some other hold up that made the trip take longer, it would be good to know that someone could get there if they needed someone. I'd also make sure they knew how to reach me while I was out, if they had a problem they didn't know how to handle.
post #9 of 71
Uh, no. It was against the law in my old state to leave under 13's in charge of siblings.
post #10 of 71
I wouldn't do it.
post #11 of 71
Honestly not being in that situation or having kids that age yet, I don't know. I do know that if I did decide to, I would probably talk to the kids on the phone for the entire trip.
post #12 of 71
I probably wouldn't do it for a bank run--as others have pointed out, there would need to be a plan in place for unexpected delays. To go next door or down the street; yes.
post #13 of 71
Well sorry to dig into the hypothetical, but the idea of popping a 9 and 5yo in a car just seems so simple...

Car trips w/ DD have been on my mind lately though. I still have to help her into the car at 16 months and lean into the middle to buckle her, but at the same time my pelvis is already going wonky on me. I measure car trips the way I measure steps LOL
post #14 of 71
my mom used to do it to me all the time, it wasn't a big deal.

However, in most states it is illegal to leave a child under a certain age, with a younger child.

So, I would look into that and then ask yourself it it was worth it, if you got 'caught up' in something on your way to or from your destination..and someone found out your kids were alone during that time?

I have left my kids here alone while I went for a run in my neighborhood. They were watching a movie, and I had my cell phone. My oldest is 8, knows the number, and a neighbor. I also know the best "short cuts" back to my street from anywhere in the neighborhood so I know I could be back quickly.

But I won't leave my kids here alone if I'm driving past the entrance of my neighborhood.
post #15 of 71
nope. too many things could happen. take them with you.
post #16 of 71
I stayed home alone with my little sister when I was 9 and she was 4...

But I wouldn't leave my own children. Why not just take them?
post #17 of 71
I would definitely, if they were comfortable and I trusted them to be safe.
This is different I know but I have left my 6 y/o home alone a couple times while I walk around the neighborhood with my younger kids.
I'm within earshot of a loud yell though.
post #18 of 71
Nope, not somethin I'd be comfortable with for all the reasons already stated, and it would be illegal in my state as well.
post #19 of 71
When I was 6 and my sister was 8.5 we would come home from school around 2:30 and she "looked after me" (ha ha) until my mom or dad came home about 5 or 6pm.

But that was the early 80's and laws were different then.

I think I might except when you add driving into it, because then you're increasing the chances of there being an accident. I don't think I would get into a car, no. But run down to the corner store, probably. I have left ds when he was 4.5 in the house for ten minutes while I ran across the street for some milk or something.
post #20 of 71
I would, but only after alerting another adult-- my mom, a neighbor, a friend-- to the situation, and asking them to check in after about 20 minutes, to make sure I was back and all was well, and if I wasn't back by then to come and take charge. And only if the kids in question were reliable and mature for their ages (my DD1 is 5.5, and more responsible than I even am, most of the time , but a lot of her friends are still very much babies.) And only if the environment was safe and the doors were locked, and the 9 year old knew how to answer the phone.

So cautiously yes. But I also know my standards of "safe" often differ from the mainstream. Most people think I'm crazy under-protective...
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