or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › at what age could your child be away from both parents for say a week?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

at what age could your child be away from both parents for say a week?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

there is a summer camp where kids attend for a week overnight without parents. they only take children from age 10. i wonder why 10. because perhaps kids at that age could stay away from their parents for that amount of time?


at what age would your children be able to part from you for a week?


how about just an overnight. at what age did they do sleepovers san parents. 

post #2 of 27

I started having my kids stay over night with my parents sometime after two. Boys were about 2 1/2, little sister closer to 2. They had to either be weaned or understand that they'd have to wait until they saw me again. 


They haven't stayed elsewhere for an over night with out us.


I've seen a farm camp that takes campers as young as 6 for a week. I wouldn't be OK with that yet.

I think by about 8, I could see it being successful for the whole week.

post #3 of 27

My oldest is 9 and there is no way she could do that. She could go with grandparents for a week but we've never done that before that long.. She stayed with my mom for 4 days once when she was 7 of her choice. DD1 also doesn't do sleepovers at all with friends though, she can't even have kids stay at our house but she does have a lot anxiety issues. She sleeps over at my parent's house about once a month and started when she was 4. The younger kids have started when they were 3. 

post #4 of 27

My dd started sleepovers at around 7, my ds1 at 4, and ds2 at 8 or 9.  Each kiddo has flown 3000 miles alone at 10 to spend up to a month with their grandparents.  If they had had any doubts we would not have "made" them but they have all loved it.


Oh, just remembered that my ds2 went on a school field trip with his school in 3rd grade (so 8?) for a week.  They go one 2-3 day camping trips every semester starting in grade 2 and move up to a week at a time by 6th grade.  His trip was a special thing that yar.  They got a grant to go to Mesa Verde National Park.

post #5 of 27

My ds1 started sleepovers with grandma really young, like 4 months old (I EP'd, so she just took some breastmilk with her).  He graduated to doing a week with her around age 3.5.  Ds2 did his first overnight at 9 months (I had to drive 10  hours for a funeral and he was a car screamer) and, although he's not done a week away yet (he's almost 3 now), he has done 3-4 nights.  Ds3 had his first overnight about 3.5 weeks ago at 15 months.  Dh and I are considering having grandma come this summer for a week so we can take a solo vacation.  He'll almost be 2 at that point.

post #6 of 27

I might consider it at now, at age 8, if he really wanted to do it.  It would have to be a situation where he'd be able to phone us anytime and we could go pick him up if it wasn't working out.  I don't think he'd want to, though.  


I wouldn't, at this point, plan to go away for a week leaving him with someone because I think he'd be pretty lonely.  He has spent 3 nights away from us now, all in the last year for sleepovers.  But he's never done it because we made him and never for more than a night.  I think even if he wanted to I couldn't handle having him away, like at g'parents on the east coast for any length of time.  Eeek!  I would hate that.  lol

post #7 of 27

Ds started sleep overs for a night at age 8.


He went to summer camp for 5 nights last year at age 10, and that was just the right amount of time. He was with a good friend and they had a blast. He missed us by the end, but didn't get too homesick. This camp actually accepts kids as young as 7 for a week. No way would my kids have been ready at 7 (dd is 7, and will be 8 this summer and there is no way she's ready!). I was somewhat surprised that ds was ready at 10. But we gave him the option of overnight camp or day camp with his friend, and he chose overnight.


I think age 10 is a reasonable age because kids are better able to separate, have a definite sense of time, and they're more competent.



post #8 of 27

I was a camp counselor when I was in college. I always had the youngest group (usually six or seven-year-olds.) While "I" wouldn't send my kids that young, many children were able to handle it and have a terrific time. DS is 7 1/2 and he's definitely not ready. He's spent two weekends at his younger sister's house but nothing longer than that.


DD's turning five this month. I "think" she'd be able to handle camp at 6 or 7. She's a pretty independent kid. But I would not sent either child until 9 or 10.

post #9 of 27

My 11 year old wouldn't be able to do it.  Right now he won't even sleep over at a friend's.  He's a homebody and when he stays with my dad in the summer he's ready to come home by night 2.

post #10 of 27

I went to sleep-away camp for two weeks when I was 9 (my choice--honestly, I think it was a lot harder on my parents than it was on me). The next summer, when I was 10, I started going for 6 weeks (also my choice). There was a parents' visiting day in the middle of the longer session. 9 or 10 seems to be a common age to start doing sleep-away camp among kids I know. 


Dd started doing sleepovers at her grandparents' at around 3 or a little before. She loves them! She's nearly 6 and has been begging to have sleepovers with friends. I think she might be a little young, but if she keeps bringing it up, I might let her try it--with the expectation that there's a decent chance I'll be going to pick her up at bedtime. 


For sleep-away camp, I could see doing a week when she was 8 or 9, if she was interested, and then longer stretches if she wanted to. I was a very independent kid, and it wouldn't surprise me if dd was the same way. Independence does not equal lack of closeness with one's parents. 

post #11 of 27

DD started doing sleepovers at around 3.5 with friends, and then weekends with cousins at around 4.  Last summer, just before she turned 5, she spent two weeks away (one week at my parents and then one week with the cousins at the beach).  She had a blast and honestly I think DH and I suffered more than she did (and from what I hear, she didn't suffer).  We did talk every day on the phone. 


I did one-week camps when I was in 4-H, probably starting around 8 or 9.  I always found it very exciting but I also recognize that much of it might depend on the personality of the child.  DD is very attached but she is also very adventurous.  Some of the sleep away camps in my state start around 9 or 10?  I think the camps for the tweens and teens are more lenghthy (6 to 8 weeks), but I know that there are some that are week-long camps for the younger set. 

post #12 of 27

I'm hoping my 13 year old does, lol.  She is going on a school trip this summer to D.C., NY & Boston and will be gone a week.  She's very excited.  She's never wanted to go to an overnight camp, so has not been gone that long yet.  DS has already said he does not want to go on the same trip when he's in 8th grade (hes in 4th now) but I'm hoping he will feel differently by the time he gets there.  There is no way 4th grade DD would have wanted to go.


First  night away for DD was amost 3.5 years old.  DP & I had a graduation to go to and she opted to stay with her grandparents instead.  We stayed in the same town--- she was fine.  DS was younger, but didn't do a repeat as soon.  When DS was almost 4 they both went to "Grand Camp" which was two nights (at a camp) with their grandparents and were fine.  They've done that every year since and last year went one day early so it was 3 nights.


Neither of my kids were weaned when they had their first sleep overs (even night weaned) but both wanted to try it and we were nearby (in the same town).  I'd be open to either kid going to summer camp but both love their unstructured summers for the most part.

post #13 of 27

I went to sleep away camp as a kid.

Started at age 7 for a week at a time. It was one of the greatest experiences I have from my childhood.

I think it depends on the kid.


Our own 2.5yr old has never slept away from us (or our bedroom), whether it be at our home or away. 

So who knows what age we will be able to let her go or she will be able to go without us.

post #14 of 27

My child? Hopefully by the time he is 18 or so;-) Definitely not yet at 10.

post #15 of 27

She can be away from me for a week when she's 30.  Seriously, I'm getting teary just thinking about it!  But I imagine she'll be ready much sooner than 30.


post #16 of 27
My kids are 7 and 5 now. I think my 7 yo would be able to handle 4-5 nights away from me, only if she were with her grandparents. In fact, they've asked to take her for a month in June to their summer home. I said no, because I don't think I am ready for that. Maybe next summer. For sleep-away camp, I'd say around 8 or 9 she'd be ready. It would be hard on me though.

My younger daughter will probably follow the same path. Maybe 8 or 9 yo before she'll be ready. She still co-sleeps now so she has a ways to go before a summer-camp situation would happen for her.

I remember going away every summer to camp for 14 days at a time. I started at age 9 and ended at maybe 12? I have amazingly positive memories of these camps.

While DH and I have left the kids plenty of times overnight (1, 2 and 3 nights at a time a couple times a year), thinking about my girls being gone for a whole week is scary. I would miss them so much! I have a girls cruise planned in July for 4 nights. The kids will stay home with daddy and I'm already starting to have anxiety over the trip. I've never left them for more than 3 nights and even that is only once a year. I try very hard to make sure they don't pick up on that though. I want them to be secure enough to be away from me.
post #17 of 27

When I was a child we started to go on week-long school camps in Grade 4 which meant 9-10 years old. I was miserably homesick (separation anxiety issues which probably lasted longer than most people's) but, IIRC, we could all manage our belongings and self-care at that age.

post #18 of 27

Well, we are planing on my kids being away from us in April for a week while DH and I go to Hawaii.  They will be 5, 7, 9, and 11.  They will be home, with grandparents, so it's not the same as being away at camp or wherever.  I know they will be fine, for sure.


DD spent about 2 weeks at her cousins and grandmas 2 summers ago, and while she had a lot of fun and asks to do it again, by the first week she was calling me crying saying she missed everyone, yet, she would then insist on staying a few more days.  I think it was hard at night, as much as she was enjoying herself.  She missed her family and home. 

post #19 of 27

My daughter spent 3 weeks at Grandma's last summer. She was 8. Other than that, she might be ready, but I am terrified.

post #20 of 27

I would think the reason a camp would have a certain age is because of capacity and/or supervision.  Kids need less direct supervision and support as they age, and perhaps there is enough demand that the camp doesn't need to be open to younger kids to meet their budget.


I don't know how young I would send a kid to camp.  DD will be 6 this summer and I suppose if I weren't so cheap and she had a good friend to go with to a camp I'd be willing.  She did spend a week away with her grandparents last summer and really enjoyed it.  My consideration with my son is more of a discipline issue. So, I would consider his ability to handle himself for a week without his parents before figuring he is "old enough".  The same grandparents want both kids this summer for a week and I just don't think my 4yo is ready to behave for a week and I don't want the grandparents disciplining him for the type of behavior I fear might come of it.


As far as straight sleep overs without parents - DD was 2yo, DS might have been 2 also.  That was with the same grandparents.



New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › at what age could your child be away from both parents for say a week?