leaving children in their own.....

(11 Posts)
girliefriend Sat 16-Mar-13 20:33:50

I popped round to one of my dds friends house today to drop her birthday present off and found that she and her brother were in the house on their own.

They are 7yo (just) and 5yo, the girl has been poorly which is why their dad had gone out shopping and left them at home. I was really quite shock and didn't know what to do at all. In the end because they opened the door to me I waited with them til their dad got home.

He was gone at least an hour and when he did get back was completely unphased by the fact that I was sat in his living room!!

What would you do in this situation?

I don't know if it makes any difference but the family aren't English.

pompompom Sat 16-Mar-13 20:38:31

Do they go to the same school as your DD? I'd have a word with the teacher.

pompompom Sat 16-Mar-13 20:39:18

(as in, they may be aware of other issues and whether it would be appropriate to take it any further)

BOF Sat 16-Mar-13 20:41:35

I'd talk to your friend first and make sure she knows, and understands how dangerous/unacceptable this is.

girliefriend Sat 16-Mar-13 20:42:29

I wondered about mentioning it to the school, I don't know, I have absolutely no other concerns about these childrens welfare. They are lovely kids and I have always got on well with the parents as well.

I was just totally thrown to find them on their own tbh.

Yes they go to my dds school.

pompompom Sun 17-Mar-13 00:04:48

I cant imagine my 5yo being left on his own - he'd be terrified. God knows what a 5 and 7yo could get up to left alone for that long.

They were obviously ok with it though, which implies its not the first time its happened.

Floralnomad Sun 17-Mar-13 00:09:47

I would speak to the mother at least about the fact that they opened the door to you , it could have been anybody . I'm a laid back parent but this even stuns me. That said I know some phillipino nurses who used to leave very small children ,including babies , home alone for at least 45 minutes when one parent was on a night shift and the other was on an early the next morning . Perhaps it is a cultural thing .

Wow. I wouldn't, and I'm usually the first to confess to "irresponsible parenting" on here. My two are 7 and 5. I'd leave the 7yo alone for maybe 12-20 mins, but not with the 5yo. That's a very unfair burden to place on either of them.

He should also be VERY worried that they let you in.

Is the mum in the picture, can you speak to her?

Bluelightsandsirens Sun 17-Mar-13 00:16:23

I've only just started leaving my 11 and 9 yr old but not togeather! Speak to your friend, she may not be aware?

exexpat Sun 17-Mar-13 00:28:40

If you're going to leave young children at home alone, you need to drill them very carefully in what to do in an emergency (do they know how to dial 999?) and what not to do (open the door to anyone).

Some 7yos might be OK, but they are too young to be left in charge of a 5yo, and this one obviously hadn't been taught safety routines. But I know in some countries it would be perfectly normal to leave children this age alone.

I would have a word with the mum (in as friendly and unaccusatory way as possible) and explain that doing this could be a problem in the UK as police and social services could view it as neglect.

girliefriend Sun 17-Mar-13 19:46:58

Thanks for replies I will try and have a word with the mum this week, am hoping I will bump into her at the school gates...

It was one of the most surreal things that has happened to me in a while!!

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