ten-year-old left alone in the house

@Cutie18f (9563)
Philippines
October 30, 2012 3:26am CST
Is it okay for a ten-year-old girl to be left alone in the house? I mean the house is fenced and it has dogs guarding. There are times when we have to leave the ten-year-old kid in the house by herself. She would be playing games on the computer when we leave, she has food to eat when she's hungry, she has a phone next to her, and a flashlight, just in case. She would be left by herself playing online games and watching TV when she's tired. Anyway, the longest time we left her was about four hours. Have you ever done this? Do you think it is okay to leave her by herself? Of course, there are neighboring houses nearby. What do you think?
8 people like this
26 responses
@Sindelle (830)
• United States
30 Oct 12
When I was a kid there were several times I was left alone that age. It might depend on the child's personality and level of responsibility at that age but I see no problem with it. She sounds like she can handle it from anything you've indicated.
1 person likes this
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
10 Nov 12
Yes, Sin. She is a bright and responsible girl.
@sid556 (31003)
• United States
31 Oct 12
Honestly, when I was a kid, I was babysitting at age 11 and my parents left me alone with my brothers while they went out for the evening. I babysat neighbor kids and even an infant. I walked to the store on my own and was smoking at that age. These days things are different. I'm not sure what the laws are about what age it is ok to leave your child alone. I think a lot depends on the hour of the day and how long they are alone for. I know my neighbor from a few years back was working llpm until 7 am. shift and he left his kids who were 10 and 13 and DCYF jumped all over him for it even though they were in bed when he left and I was right next door and they knew they could run to me anytime or even bang on the wall!! If I were you, I'd inquire as to what the laws where you live are. Personally, I think it should depend on how mature the individual kid is but these days we have laws that dictate us on this stuff.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
12 Nov 12
I agree with you Sid. I think the mental maturity of the kid has to be considered.
@sid556 (31003)
• United States
12 Nov 12
Yes...this man had to give up his job ove this which I thought was ridiculous. The kids were good kids and were in bed and asleep when he went to work at night. I even gave them a spare key to come into my place if they had to for any reason. It was like they were in the next room in my apartment. Forcing him to give up his job put him behind in rent and bills and it was just awful and for no good reason.
• United States
30 Oct 12
I have left my 10 year old home just to run to the store real quick but never more than an hour. Im sorry but 4 hours is just to long to many things can go wrong when a child is left alone for that long. Where I live Child Protective Services said that leaving a child under 11 years of age home alone is the same as neglect and that you never should leave a child that young home alone. They also said that at 11 that its really taking a chance even then. I only know because my friend was investigated for leaving his 10 year old home alone. My daughter is now 12 and I am still nervous about leaving her home alone for more than an hour. I guess I am just a paranoid parent that is not ready for my child to grow up.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
31 Oct 12
Hearing this I should start getting more careful next time. Thanks, Autumn.
@garson (886)
• United States
12 Nov 12
I am just wondering about this. I was thinking about what is the minimum age when parents can start leaving their children home by themselves for long periods especially in the US. Sometimes, a parent has to do something real quick like going to a store or emergency situation. This is when communication is important. Also, knowing a neighbor becomes handy. A mom or a dad or both can ask a neighbor to keep an eye of the house for short period like half an hour at most.
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
1 Nov 12
I would be afraid to leave my child alone at that age. There are so many idiots out there that it is not safe, along with the dangers in the home. I would really try to at least have a neighbor check on her or take the child with me.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
24 Nov 12
That is very true, Thorough. I do not want to do it again.
@cerebellum (3871)
• United States
31 Oct 12
I think she should not be left for that long a time. If she is mature enough, she could be left for a little while. It sounds like you leave her well off, but if there is a fire would she know what to do? When I was a child I was left with my 14 year old brother,and a fire started on the couch and we didn't know what to do. I don't really remember how the fire started, but I think we were playing with matches. Obviously he wasn't mature enough to watch me (he's 4 years older than I).
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
12 Nov 12
That's the thing now when you have two or more kids left alone in the house. That could be more dangerous.
@burrito88 (2779)
• United States
31 Oct 12
This discussion group was started about the TV SHOW HOUSE. What has your post got to do with that. Look at the photo. It shows the actors from the TV show. It doesn't show a house.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
12 Nov 12
What? Oh, I didn't notice that. I wonder why I chose that or was it just an accident? I must have been thinking of TV and the kid who is left alone in the house.
@trisha27 (3498)
• United States
31 Oct 12
No I don't think that it is a good idea to leave a ten year old child alone in the home. My parents didn't leave my brother and me a lone until he was like 12 and it was only for 2 hours the longest and that is it. I think that 10 years old is just too young. Yes, you may leave them alone with all the necessities that they may need, but what if something goes wrong. That's just my opinion though.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
12 Nov 12
Hi Trish! Yes, I am always worried about that.
• China
31 Oct 12
Well,if your neighbor is your close friends and will help you keep a eye for your daughter,and you just leave for four hours,then I think it is OK,if not,pls do not make a 10-year-old little girl leave alone in the house,that is too dangerous.In this case you can call your relatives or your friends to your house and take good care of your daughter,or you can just take her around you wherever you go.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
12 Nov 12
Hi Sky! The kid is guarded by three fierce dogs and I do have neighbors left and right side of the house but they can't come inside because of my dogs.
@jadoixa (1171)
• Philippines
31 Oct 12
i think four hours or less in leaving a ten-year-old kid alone in the house is just fine. kids at that age are already aware and responsible enough to care and look for themselves as long as we advice them not to go out or open the gates if they don't know the person outside. they can already understand, or if they will just play games on computer and watch tv there. i think it is okay. but also we must not do it often, i think it is also best if she has somebody with her maybe 2 or 3 of them in the house, just in case.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
12 Nov 12
I think it is even more dangerous to have other kids in the house. When kids are left unsupervised, they have the tendency to lose reason and go wild. They play crazy and dangerous games so I feel better leaving the kid by herself than with another child who could have some crazy games in mind.
@hereandthere (33034)
• Philippines
31 Oct 12
i do understand your situation. what's important is that she is instructed well about safety, such as not leaving electrical appliances on, not playing with matches/leaving the gas open on the stove, not leaving the faucet or shower on. if she wants to get something and it's way up high, wait for an adult to come back and get it. don't climb up and don't get inside closets, either. i'm not sure what your instructions are about people ringing the doorbell or calling on the landline if she should attend to them, but it's worth thinking about.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
10 Nov 12
We have dogs that bark when people stand at the gate and she knows what to do already when this happens. When these people will ask where her mom is, she's supposed to say "in the shower" or "sleeping". She shouldn't say she's alone.
@sender621 (14956)
• United States
30 Oct 12
This would have to depend on the personalitry abd stamina onf the child. A Ten year old child can be a responsiblee enough to be left alone as s longf as certqin guid3elines and rulkes are followed by the household.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
10 Nov 12
Yes, she knows the safety rules and she would repeat them to me before I leave.
@youless (94327)
• Guangzhou, China
30 Oct 12
Perhaps ten years old girl is still a little child. Although the equipments are well at your home. But sometimes children can do something that is unexpected. They may play something dangerous, like the fire. This is how the accidents occur when there are only little children at home.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
5 Nov 12
Hi You. When it comes to fire, no, the child in the house knows what dangerous things are to be avoided. She is an intelligent kid and she knows.
@estremms (324)
• Philippines
30 Oct 12
No way I'm gonna leave my ten-year old child alone at home. No one knows what things might happen to my child or even to me. I might get into an accident or a thief will enter our house and we know how thieves are, they have ways to enter a guarded locked house even in broad daylight.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
5 Nov 12
We have big dogs in the house and I am sure thieves wouldn't want to go near my house. Also, we have neighbors.
@fatlex06 (895)
• Philippines
30 Oct 12
In our culture, we are not used to leaving a child like a 10 or younger alone in the house. I am an online teacher for Koreans and I notice that everytime I teach some of my students, some of them are alone in the house. I asked them if it's okay with them and they said yes. They even told me that they are used to it. ANd they always reasoning out that they always have their cellphone to call their parents if ever there's an emergency. But still, in my opinion, don't leave a child unattended till they're teens.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
5 Nov 12
Okay. I am now taking the child with me wherever I go. Thanks for the input.
@GemmaR (8526)
30 Oct 12
I don't think that it is okay to leave a child of this age in the house, because she isn't old enough to know what to do when things happen. If anything were to go wrong in the house while you were out then you would never forgive yourselves. I think that the fact that you have had to ask this question at all shows that you know that it's not okay, and that it's not something that you're entirely comfortable with. I wasn't even allowed to stay in the house on my own while my parents nipped to the shops at this age, never mind staying home alone for any significant period of time.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
2 Nov 12
Yes, Gemma, I know it is not safe. I have to know better. Thanks.
• Qatar
30 Oct 12
Although my daughter is now 12 years old, I have not left her at home even for a single minute. I am afraid for whatever may happen to her.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
2 Nov 12
I can understand your concern, GP.
@doroffee (4230)
• Hungary
30 Oct 12
I think it's totally okay. Kids should learn to be independent anyways. I know how frustrating it was that untzil 14 my parents just didn't want to leave me alone, and they sent people to supervise me. Especially if it's not a week, but three or four hours.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
31 Oct 12
I did think it was okay. I gave her all instructions to be safe, what to do when there is this and that, but maybe I should have brought her along with me. She was fine anyway when I came home.
• United States
30 Oct 12
Depending on the state in which you live, you may be running the risk of a visit from CPS. Four hours is a bit long of a time to leave the child home alone, and you do have neighbors--one of whom might decide to pick up the phone and place a call if (s)he sees you doing this. A quick trip out is one thing. Leaving your 10-year old home alone for several hours is another.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
31 Oct 12
I know four hours is a bit too long Wilson that is why I am starting this discussion. I should not let this happen again.
@jaiho2009 (39001)
• Philippines
30 Oct 12
I don't think I can leave my 10 yrs old daughter alone. I haven't done it with my kids when they were young. But, maybe you will not do such a thing if you knew she's in danger or if the neighborhood is not safe. I guess you are confident that she's safe especially if you have lived in the place for a long time and you know how good the people are in the neighborhood.
@Cutie18f (9563)
• Philippines
30 Oct 12
Yes, I know the neighborhood very well and people are afraid to go near our place because of our dogs.
@leeandrew (1226)
• Philippines
23 Nov 12
I just cannot imagine leaving my daughter alone in the house at night. Actually my friends told me the the law prohibit leaving a minor in the house alone, co's anything not good happens to the minor... the parents are liable, they could be sent to jail by a social worker. I would suggest that don't do it unless you asked a neighbor or a relative who is older to look after her when your away.