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AIBU to be a shocked at a parent leaving their 4 month old home alone for 10 minutes

(1000 Posts)
NotMyUsualNameNoSiree Thu 06-Jun-19 12:55:00

I overheard a conversation at school the other day, a mum was telling another mum how she left her young DD (4mo) at home while she picked up her DS (aged 5 or 6) from school.

I believe she lives around the corner and across the road from school, maybe 1 or 2 minutes walk. But pick-up would probably take 10 minutes in total to get the kid, get him ready, leave school premises and get home.

Of course I rationally know that no harm is likely to come to a 4mo left alone for ten minutes. But even if it's very very unlikely that anything bad would happen (to the baby, or the mum, or the older kid), it still gives me the chills to think about it.

Instinctively I want to say something, whether to her or the school. But I don't know if I'm being over cautious.

OP’s posts: |
lily2403 Thu 06-Jun-19 14:55:11

I would never leave my 4month old at home alone. You never know what may happen

Pencilcase123 Thu 06-Jun-19 14:56:02

It is neglect. It is a heck of a risk and it is illegal. Tell the school’s dedicated safeguarding officer.

pigsDOfly Thu 06-Jun-19 15:05:33

Aren't parents advised to keep their babies in the same room as them overnight until they are six months old? There's a reason for this.

Very strange behaviour to leave a four month old baby alone. Agree it's neglectful.

nokidshere Thu 06-Jun-19 15:07:46

Why would you tell the school? It's got nothing to do with them. Haven't they got enough to do with the children they are already responsible for!

If anyone thinks a child is at risk then they need to call their Local Authority Safeguarding Board and report directly.

JustHereforHarriet Thu 06-Jun-19 15:20:31

Are you sure she wasn’t with dad? I often say I’ve left the youngest at home at pick up when of course she’s got her dad with her.

Notabedofroses Thu 06-Jun-19 15:21:09

I would advise the school, yes they are busy, but they are in the best position to know what to do. She should not have left her baby at home alone for any amount of time. That said ss report seems heavy handed to me at least. Without knowing the family I couldn't say, but I do think she should be told one or another that she must stop leaving her baby.

freshstartnewme Thu 06-Jun-19 15:21:29

It's just plain stupid. From what I read on here half of Mumsnet will pitch up and say it's ok. Mental.

Notabedofroses Thu 06-Jun-19 15:22:41

Also be very careful to ensure you have your facts completely straight, and that the baby has been left for ten minutes alone. It would be terrible to cause a huge problem for her if you have misunderstood.

HalyardHitch Thu 06-Jun-19 15:22:55

I "leave" my 18 month old napping at home when I do the drive to collect my toddler from preschool. Truth is, dh wfh. But to most it would look like I've just left my youngest

DistanceCall Thu 06-Jun-19 15:25:31

Incredibly reckless.

It's not just that something could happen to the child in those 10 minutes and she wouldn't be around. It's that something could happen to the mother meanwhile - what if she gets run over / delayed / something else happens?

museumum Thu 06-Jun-19 15:26:33

Beware of putting too much store in an overhead conversation!

Celebelly Thu 06-Jun-19 15:26:44

If she gets run over it's probably best the baby wasn't with her!!!

But yes, if baby is actually alone then I wouldn't be very comfortable with that. It doesn't take much to bung them in a pram to come with.

JacquesHammer Thu 06-Jun-19 15:27:53

You need to ensure that you have got the story straight.

But if you are 100% sure the baby is being left alone, then please do refer on.

Happyspud Thu 06-Jun-19 15:29:10

It should be absolutely fine, until it’s not. I know a woman who did this, got hit by a car (rushing across the road to the school without looking), and killed. It was a little while before someone thought to ask where the baby was.

So in theory, seriously a baby is fine for 10 mins or so, even if screaming their head off, but things do happen. I guess you could take the approach that a mum can collapse of a brain bleed at home and a baby left in a cot for 10hr before being found. Crazy unexpected things can happen. So I wouldn’t criticise a mum doing the quick run to the school if they decide to take that risk but I personally wouldn’t do it now after what happened to my best friends family member.

Seniorschoolmum Thu 06-Jun-19 15:29:15

I left ds for 5 minutes when he was 2. He was asleep and poorly, and I’d run out of Calpol. It made me feel like a rubbish parent for weeks.

I can’t imagine leaving a tiny baby. Why not just stick it in a sling and take it along?

Happyspud Thu 06-Jun-19 15:30:17

It’s not ‘incredibly reckless’, it’s probably ‘a little bit risky’ at most. No need for the drama.

NotMyUsualNameNoSiree Thu 06-Jun-19 15:35:25

I am certain she left the baby - I overheard a conversation which went along the lines of:

Mum 1: "<DD name> is finally asleep, so I've left her in her crib while I pick <DS name> up, she'll be okay...parents leave their babies in prams in the school playground while they go in all the time".

Mum 2: "Yeah, she'll probably be fine, the biggest risk is that you get run over, and no one knows that she's in the house on her own".

There were definitely and understandably a tone of judgement from Mum 2.

The reason I'd mention it to the school @nokidshere is because they would know what to do, they are trained in safeguarding, they are mandatory reporters if they have any safeguarding concerns, I am none of those things. I'm just a nosy-parker who overheard a conversation in the playground which left me feeling uncomfortable.

I asked if IABU as I'm pretty cautious (for instance, when I'm putting the bins out when DD is in bed and DH isn't home, it's literally three steps into my own front garden, and I still put the door on the latch and carry my keys at face height never taking my eyes off them, as I ditch the bin bag in the bin).

OP’s posts: |
HomeMadeMadness Thu 06-Jun-19 15:39:00

YANBU. I know someone who used to drop her kids at school a 20 minute drive away (so gone at least 40 minutes) while her baby napped. I thought it was ridiculous - what if the baby was ill or something happened to the mum (even an accident where nobody was hurt could take a long time to sort out with baby left screaming alone).

Greenglassteacup Thu 06-Jun-19 15:39:25

You might have missed part of the conversation where she mentions that her sister / Mum etc is in the house too.

Greenglassteacup Thu 06-Jun-19 15:40:45

HomeMadeMadness, if you knew that to be the case for absolute definite you should have reported it. Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility. In the current case, the OP might not be so certain

NotMyUsualNameNoSiree Thu 06-Jun-19 15:45:19

You might have missed part of the conversation where she mentions that her sister / Mum etc is in the house too.

True, but if that were the case I doubt she'd have justified it by mentioning that other people leave prams in the school playground all the time.

I suspect but don't know, as I was behind them, that the mum she was telling looked shocked, so she felt the need to excuse it, but that's just me guessing.

OP’s posts: |
MrsMiggins37 Thu 06-Jun-19 15:45:24

You might have missed part of the conversation where she mentions that her sister / Mum etc is in the house too.


Some people really will go to any lengths to excuse shite parenting on here

JacquesHammer Thu 06-Jun-19 15:49:13

Some people really will go to any lengths to excuse shite parenting on here

Don't be daft. It's prudent to be absolutely sure before you get outside agencies involved with accusations of neglect.

Greenglassteacup Thu 06-Jun-19 15:50:16

Err no, I’m just saying she overheard part of a conversation so she doesn’t know the facts as opposed to the other poster who knew a woman who for definite repeatedly left her baby alone at home.

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