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MomTalk.com November 24, 2017:   The women's magazine for moms about children, family, health, home, fashion, careers, marriage & more


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Leaving Your Child Home Alone

homealone.jpgWhether it's a snow day home from school, an unexpected business appointment, or a child care arrangement that fell through at the last minute, situations are likely to arise where you feel you have little choice but to leave your child home alone. But it doesn't have to be something for which you and your child feel unprepared.

homealone.jpgWhether it's a snow day home from school, an unexpected business appointment, or a child care arrangement that fell through at the last minute, situations are likely to arise where you feel you have little choice but to leave your child home alone.

It's natural to be a bit anxious when you first leave your child without any supervision. But it doesn't have to be something for which you and your child feel unprepared. With some planning - and trial runs where you remain close by - you can approach the situation with confidence.

Handled well, staying home alone can be a positive experience for your child, too - one that helps him or her gain a sense of self-assurance and independence.
Is Your Child Ready?

It's obvious that a 5-year-old can't go it alone, and that a 16-year-old can probably handle it. But what about those school-aged kids in the middle? It can be difficult to know when kids are ready to handle being home alone. Ultimately, it comes down to your judgment about what your child is ready for.

You'll want to know how your child feels about the prospect, of course. But often kids insist that they'll be fine long before you feel comfortable with the idea. And then there are older kids who seem afraid even when you're pretty confident that they would be just fine. So how do you know?

In general, it's probably not a good idea to leave a child younger than 10 years old home alone. Every child is different, but at that age, most kids don't have the maturity and skills to respond to an emergency if they're alone.

But there are other factors to consider too.

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Categories: Pre-Schoolers, School-Age, Children, Newsletter,


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