To consider this? Re children going to park alone...

(62 Posts)
MrsWinnibago Thu 14-Aug-14 10:48:21

DD1 is just turned 10. DD2 is 6 and a half. Can I let DD1 take DD2 to the park up the road?

It's a big park....which is what worries me really, surrounded by bike track and fields. The park itself though is close to the path and road but fenced in.

DD1 already goes to the shops nearby alone....but she's never been alone to the park....always gone with friends her own age.

My sister says DD1 is too young to be responsible for a very lively 6 year old. What to do?

Shall I just wait till DD2 is a bit older? They play outside a bit but only in the garden. the park is less than 5 mins walk away....

Nancy66 Thu 14-Aug-14 10:50:35

if you're worried then I wouldn't - because you're not going to relax the whole time they're out.

NorwaySpruce Thu 14-Aug-14 10:52:53

I wouldn't, but only because if my 6 year old took it into their heads to do something daft with their new found freedom (and mine probably would) my 10 year old would be powerless to do anything about it.

OnlyWantsOne Thu 14-Aug-14 10:55:34

I wouldn't.

10 is too young to be in charge of a 6 year old.

MrsWinnibago Thu 14-Aug-14 10:56:27

Ah well...Norway that's my only fear. My 6 year old is also a bit headstrong and poor DD1 would never control her if she got a bee in her bonnet.

LadyLuck10 Thu 14-Aug-14 10:57:16

I wouldn't, it's not right to place responsibility on a 10 year old who is still a child herself and may not know what to do if something happens.
It's not worth the risk, maybe wait till they are about older.

Goldmandra Thu 14-Aug-14 10:58:14

being responsible for your own safety and behaviour as a ten year old is a far cry from being responsible for that of a six year old.

I wouldn't even consider it.

vestandknickers Thu 14-Aug-14 10:59:55

No. I think you know that - you don't sound that keen in your post.

Could you compromise - let them be semi independent but you sit at a bit of a distance with a book and tell the older one to come and get you if she has any worries? That way they wouldn't feel you were hanging over them, but you're there if needed.

AuntieStella Thu 14-Aug-14 11:00:07

If you don't think DD2 is yet capable of adequate behaviour when DD1 is in charge, then it has to be a no.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Thu 14-Aug-14 11:00:12

I'd let your 10 year old go on her own if she wants to.

mijas99 Thu 14-Aug-14 11:02:37

It all depends how confident you are in your 10 year old

When I was 7, I would take my 2 year old brother to the park by myself. When I was 9 I would take the bus into town by myself to meet my friends

This was normal in the 80s. I don't understand why children nowadays are deemed to be so useless

Poledra Thu 14-Aug-14 11:02:47

Too much responsibility for the 10-yo, I think. I have a 10-yo and 6-yo (with an 8-yo in between) and I wouldn't make the oldest responsible for the youngest in the park. Short walk to the shop and back yes, but not out to play where the oldest is likely to be distracted from keeping her eye on the 6-yo.

And there is no way on God's green earth I'd make the 10-yo responsible for the 8-yo, as they fight like cat and dog! grin

Eastpoint Thu 14-Aug-14 11:02:55

You could build up to it, eg go with them both & leave them for 10 minutes, go with them & ask them to come home on their own etc. It all depends on the children in question & a 6 year old girl who is nearly 7 is very different from a 6 year old boy who was still 5 two weeks ago.

DaisyFlowerChain Thu 14-Aug-14 11:03:24

I wouldn't either. Not fair on your elder DD to expect her to babysit a younger sibling. What if she falls etc?

MuddlingMackem Thu 14-Aug-14 11:04:16

I don't think you should let them go.

I agree that it's not reasonable to put the 10 year old in charge of a 6 year old.

I have the same issue today with a 7 year old who doesn't want to come to the shops with me, but her 10 year old brother gets to stay at home. However, he's too young to be made responsible for her, and she's too young to be trusted to be responsible for herself, so she'll have to come with me, even though it makes it a miserable experience for both of us. grin

EndoplasmicReticulum Thu 14-Aug-14 12:16:32

I wouldn't. Mine are 9 and nearly 8 and I'd trust either on their own a lot more than both of them together!

I have left the older one at home alone for five minutes before but wouldn't leave his brother too because I'd come back to a disaster.

amyhamster Thu 14-Aug-14 12:20:02

Why don't you want to go with them ?
Take a flask of coffee, iPad, paper, or book
Anything really that will make it more bearable for you

cakecake Thu 14-Aug-14 12:23:02

Why don't you build up to it? Let them walk ahead of you - act as if you aren't there when at the park, then after a while you can just walk them to the park leave them for a while and come back and get them. See how they get on with that first.

CMOTDibbler Thu 14-Aug-14 12:23:28

I wouldn't. A few months ago, dh was walking ddog in the park when he found a 6 year old crying - he'd gone with his 10 ish yr old brother on their bikes, and older brother had fallen off, hit his head and was unresponsive. DH called the ambulance, and then the police came as well and had to get the little one to take them home to get a parent.
IMO, children need to be with a couple of other children who are responsible, just in case of an accident - doesn't need to be much, just a twisted ankle

Softlysoftlycatchymonkey Thu 14-Aug-14 12:23:57

I wouldn't . I had to sit with a smaller child on a park when they broke their ankle for an ambulance. She was crying for her mum it was awful. I think they were 6/7.

hollie84 Thu 14-Aug-14 12:27:10

I would let them go if they were each responsible for themselves, but not if one had to be responsible for the other.

I would have let my 10 year old take his 8 year old sister, but she listened to him and they were great together, if you doubt your 6 year old will behave do not do it, would you leave them at home alone together while you popped to the shops for 30mins? that was always my bar, if they could be trusted at home together for a while i would let them go out together for a short while.

Velvetbee Thu 14-Aug-14 12:33:25

My youngest aged 9 and 7 started going to the park alone this summer, though it's just behind the houses opposite (and I could hear any screaming from the kitchen).
I don't hold the eldest responsible for the youngest as that's not fair (and the eldest is visually impaired and has SEN) but tell them to look after each other.
They built up gradually staying just a few minutes at first and it was fine because we were all happy with it. If you feel uncomfortable don't do it just keep it in mind as a target for the future. October half term? Easter next year?

4boysxhappy Thu 14-Aug-14 12:35:22

I would not let a ten year old look after a young child.

Would let them go on their own if suitable distance and sensible. Set rules though.

Younger child only with adult.

DogCalledRudis Thu 14-Aug-14 12:36:56

No. Too big responsibility, plus younger ones can be deliberately act up.

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