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Childcare for an 11 year old

(23 Posts)
MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 20:36:45

Hi Mums&Dads,

I am finding things very difficult at times being a single mum and childcare, I have gone back to studying at University as well as working. My child has started secondary school now and is 11. He is very sensible and mature and I don't know at this age, do I get a childminder after school or if this an age where an hour at home before I get back from is ok? I am so confused by this and I am sure many will have different opinions?

My mum was always over strict on us, I was never allowed out with friends even at 14/15 she never wanted me to go anywhere and I've aways said I wouldn't be like her but in the same breathe I want to get it right, she is telling me I would be very selfish to go to a university class and leave him for an hour to occupy himself. She is now going on holiday more and more despite knowing I need some help and his father works 12hours days. I am struggling for childcare and finding there are no after school clubs at such an age and that the ones I can find are for younger children.

What are people's thoughts on his age and childcare, am I being reasonable with him being at secondary school to think an hour is ok or is he still at an age where I need to find some help?

Thank you everyone.

derektheladyhamster Sun 11-Sep-16 20:39:50

If he's happy with being left, it'll be fine. Mine was left until 5pm 3 afternoons a week after school, and I'd leave half an hour before him in the mornings

derektheladyhamster Sun 11-Sep-16 20:41:02

You could also encourage him to join some after school clubs?

MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 20:44:52

Thank you Derek, my mum is being so awful about this and saying i'm putting myself before him and if i'd do that and leave him while I am work or university then I am a bad mum, yet she can't think that much of him to keep going away every month and leaving me with no help at all. She has put me on guilt trips from such a young age that I don't know what is ok and felt speaking to other parents would help me see what is the norm'. My son is ok about it, he has a mobile and the landline, he's got plenty of things to keep himself entertained and I have plenty of neighbours he can call on if he needed anything desperately.

Thank you for taking the time to reply.

LynetteScavo Sun 11-Sep-16 20:51:56

I definitely let myself in and was alone for an hour at that age. My biggest problem was if I forgot me key (weave key safe so my DC don't have that predicament)

I know people who do use childminders at this age but they collect at 6:30, and 11yo would have been alone for three hours. It's nice for some children to have tea and watch tv with others rather than be alone. Most DC are fine for an hour a day though.

justjuanmorebeer Sun 11-Sep-16 21:01:06

I was a secondary school teacher for eight years and did not know any children who had childcare after school, it wasn't really the done thing. They'd travel home alone on school buses usually.

I think for an hour he will be completely fine.

PippaFawcett Sun 11-Sep-16 21:02:32

He will be fine, ignore your mother and best of luck at university!

kimlo Sun 11-Sep-16 21:03:53

Dd1 has got the bus home and stayed by herself until I get in at about 6 since she started high school.

Its fine.

tireddotcom72 Sun 11-Sep-16 21:03:58

Since high school my dd has been on her own for 1/2 hour in morning and 1 1/2 to 2 hours in the evening she has been fine

MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 21:05:38

Thank you Lynette, he does have two friends next door that he plays with but I'd rather him stay in so I know where he is, he also has this online xbox thing and he has at least 5 of his school friends on there at a time so I know he would be talking to his friends and not really be on his own, 'own'.
It would literally be one day after school and 45minutes one morning, I feel like I might be being over cautious as my neighbours girl has been left for quite some time and my other neighbours child is sometimes left all day but I do think thats probably a bit too long? I just find it so confusing with the way my mum is, I know he is sensible and I know he would be ok it'd just be the first time and its a bit worrying when your use to them being small and now he's getting bigger. I can't wrap him up in cotton wool forever but its nice to know that other parents would say this fine its a bit more reassuring.

defineme Sun 11-Sep-16 21:07:07

I would think that the majority are going home to empty houses at that age and there isn't any childcare.
You haven't got a childcare problem you've got a mother problem.
I am sorry she's a controlling idiot, but you're an adult and you can break free. Tbh i think going no contact would be fantastic for you.

MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 21:08:37

Your all really helpful, honestly. Part of me thinks my mum is just wanting to be very controlling still, I have a new partner and she hates it, she couldn't stand my ex and now they are best of pals, he come over to hers all the time. I don't speak to my ex anymore as the last messages from him were so vile i refused to talk to him anymore. He has now stopped paying my for our child or pays me bits when he wants and my mum says if i speak to him he will pay me but i'm not being controlled anymore. I think it worries them that he's getting older i don't need to be conversing with them anymore and so they are trying to throw as many guilt trips my way as possible. Thank you very much for replying to me.

donajimena Sun 11-Sep-16 21:12:15

I have an 11 year old and 13 year old and I leave them for more than an hour. Under strict instruction not to go out or cook.
Chance would be a fine thing!

MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 21:16:07

Thank you Defineme I think you have probably hit the nail on the head, I'm finding it very difficult trying to cut ties with my mum but it seems the only way to keep some sanity, overtime i try to speak with her we end up arguing because my ex is there so often. I have been in my car and they have drove past me together taking my child to toysrus, she has just been away with him for a week with my dad and him, they had him over at christmas and he goes over even when my child isn't there. They say why does it matter if they are friends with my ex but we had an awful relationship and i don't reminding of it. I've never and never would stop my child seeing him but i don't want him in my life at all.

MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 21:18:45

donajimena thats funny, Will does know how to make things but I have told him if he does stay on his own a bit he's not to go near any cooking utensils or kettles. He does make me a good brew though smile

Kewcumber Sun 11-Sep-16 21:22:17

I have a nearly 11 year old in year 6 - and I leave him for an hour occasionally without worrying.

Orangetoffee Sun 11-Sep-16 21:29:54

I have an 11 year old and think it is absolutely fine to leave them on their own for that time. I can't see a problem with them using a toaster or kettle either.

Ignore your mum, you know best.

Pythonesque Sun 11-Sep-16 21:34:56

Good advice above. What's more, whenever your mum says you're a bad mum and not putting your son first - remind yourself that by doing your course to get ahead you are absolutely thinking of your son's needs longer term!

MaryAnne16 Sun 11-Sep-16 22:07:04

Thank you everyone, I had him at a young-ish age, I was 18 so I missed out on university and I have always wanted to go back to studying but my mum has made it clear she doesn't want to help, she will have him at times he's meant to be at his dads or times when I don't need her to. I feel like I have had to put many things on hold until he's at an age where I get some independence back too but if it was unto my mum he would never be old enough and I will be too old by then to start my career properly and just be reliant on them. Onwards and upwards. Thank you everyone.

JacquettaWoodville Mon 12-Sep-16 18:10:07

Adding my voice to the "this is ok" chorus

Lardypops Mon 12-Sep-16 18:42:59

I'm in the same predicament, son walks home from school and has 2 hours 4 days a week alone, his younger sister is in primary year 6 so has after school club. One of my neighbours friends commented today that he's far too young to be on his own and I should have a childminder. Makes me feel like a bad parent when the only reason I work is to look after my kids

Orangetoffee Mon 12-Sep-16 20:48:27

just ignore her Lardypops, you and your son are happy with this arrangement and that is what counts.

LynetteScavo Mon 12-Sep-16 23:08:46

Our toaster did catch fire recently when 13 and 10 yo were making cheese toasties.

DH and I were home....they alerted us and I put the toaster in the garden and let it burn out. 13yo watched me do this, and I know he's do the same in future. Not so sure about the 10yo, now just turned 11yo.

I think if I hadn't been there the kitchen cupboard above the toaster may have caught fire....

DH told them to just leave it and leave the house. He said don't worry about a fire or the house burning as long as you're safe...just let a neighbour know and if necessary they will call the fire brigade.

I, personally, think this advice depends on how much you like your kitchen, whether you have home insurance, and how reliable your neigbours are.

Having said all that I would be happy leaving my 11yo. She knows no trampolining and no cake baking when I'm not home. I recently left her roller-blading and told her her 17yo brother wouldn't administer first aid if she fell over. I came home to find her cleaning her own grazed knees.

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