AIBU - husband left 3.5yr old home alone for 10 minutes(139 Posts)
I am so upset. I was working today, our nanny was sick and my husband stayed at home to look after our 3.5yr old twins. They had pre-school in the morning which is just at the end of our road. One of our daughters was sick so she couldn't go. I found out tonight ( from my sick daughter) that husband had left her in the bathroom home alone while he dropped other daughter off at pre-school. She said she was ok and that she sang the 'I'm all alone song' to herself while Daddy was gone. My heart broke. Husband is out at moment. I am SO ANGRY. Why would he do this? He knows how strongly I feel about young children being left alone ( although he seems to think this just some hysterical over protectiveness of mine). He told me when they were babies that he thought it was fine to go to the local shops when they were having a nap at home! He thinks the risks of anything happening are quite low. Maybe true but why take that risk? What if she had choked on her vomit, fallen down stairs, tried to get out house to look for him? She was obviously scared. I thought he was a great Dad but now I don't know how I can trust him to look after them. AIBU to be so upset and angry about this?
Your dh either still thinks it was acceptable or possibly now doesn't want to admit or accept that he might have been in the wrong and done something bad. Does he have difficulty saying sorry in other situations? Sometimes partners don't and cannot agree on an aspect of parenting - but one of you has to say "I don't have the same opinion as you but I agree to follow your rules on this one". While I would be very annoyed if I were you by his not apologising or accepting responsibility for his serious poor judgement in this case, that may be what you need to do and over time he will hopefully come to agree with you (even if he is too proud to admit it). He needs to understand that when two parents differ over a parenting issue, the parent who has genuine concerns about the child's safety and wellbeing is the one you need to be listening to on that occasion. I would still have a chat to your HV or GP for a bit of advice / support though. Hopefully you don't have a completely blase and old-fashioned HV who grew up on a remote farm where the sixteen children ran wild, but even so in this day and age I don't think they would condone leaving a small child alone.
By 'this may be what you need to do' I meant this may be what he needs to do.
I really don't think you have any choice but to report this to your Hv or gp, Hv will be more approaite, your doctors can pass you on her number. Yes they will have to do a full investigation but maybe that's the only thing that will make your dh see how serious this is? Your children will not be taken away from you as you are putting there needs first and are trying to make sure they are safe above and beyond your dh wants / views (which is what they want to see). However unreported, and a neighbour / nursery staff / friend etc makes a report to ss (which could easily happen) I think you would find yourself in more trouble. The fact that your dh refuses to accept he did anything wrong means you can't leave them with him. I realise that is a major stress for you but I just don't see how you can until he truly understands what he did and by it was wrong. By the way I'm a pretty relaxed parent, kids play out, lots of independence etc but there's no way I would leave a 3 year old alone in the house unless I was in the garden and could hear her, and even then not for long. There's no way I would leave a sick 3 year old alone for 4 minutes whilst I left the house / garden, that's neglect which is a form of abuse.
Our nursery was directly opposite our house, across a residential road. It took me at least 15 minutes round-trip to collect DS. No way did your husband only leave your DD for 4 minutes. And I bet she was on her own in the bathroom for several minutes before and after he left the house, while he got coat/shoes/keys on, and while he got your other DC's coat/shoes etc. off.
I have 3 DC and sometimes I go to school taking only one with me (because the younger ones are at home with someone else). Every time, a parent always asks 'Oh, where's xx'? People do notice, and I am sure if people thought I was leaving a child alone in the house, they would say something to school, or possibly even report it.
OP, I would suggest you have a word with your HV about this, to get it on record
If you ever split with your H (and it's looking likely from here) you face the possibility of him being charged with the dc's sole care for (minimum) whole weekends and an overnight in the week
You may just need some support and ammunition to fight that, if that is what it came down to
You sound rather defeated love, this isn't the only way he browbeats and dominates your wishes it it ?
Hmmm, I don't condone what he's done, 10 minutes is a long time for a 3 year old especially a sick one. i could have wrapped her up and took her or ask a neighbour to watch her for a few minutes. I've left my ill child unattended, granted asleep in cot, for a few minutes - 5 tops, while I popped over to a neighbours to borrow something.
It's a fine line that's easily crossed especially if both parents don't agree. DH disapproved but didn't shout or cause a scene. We sat and discussed it, like adults. If I wanted to be spiteful I could have brought up the times he was in the garden with other do while twins slept inside.
You need to talk to each other and set up guild lines. Shouting won't do any good, you'll just make each other more angry and no solution would be made.
That's my 2 cents anyway.
He is breaking the law.
What if your dd was ill whilst he was gone?
If anyone knows he could get reported.
Fuck. I'd report him!
My father once left me in the car while he popped to the shop, forgot to lock it and I climbed out and crossed the old, father found me holding a strangers hand. Father was so shook up he told my mother. Mother wasn't pleased, but didn't report him, or argue about it. They made it through as a couple and as parents until mother died, so obvs anything can be worked out if you really want it to. Reporting is a bit harsh to me. Talk to him, discuss things with him, ask him to be honest and come clean, work from there.
Thank you Mumsnetters for your advice and support. This has been so stressful but he has now read the thread in more detail and has admitted that he was wrong and that I was not overeacting. It took this thread to change his mind. I am cautiously hopeful we can work it out.
I'm glad he was admitted he was wrong, sometimes it takes more than one point of view or an outsiders view for things to sink in. I think it took a lot for him to admit he was wrong, and that you're working past it, is a good sign.
Very glad to hear that; this wasn't a case of different parenting approaches where one opinion can be as valid as another - he was just plain wrong to do it ad it's good, having read the thread, that he finally realised it.
However, it's a shame he needed to read this thread to come to that conclusion and that he didn't just respect your approach or opinion.
I don't think my DH and I have had a differing of approach with our DS yet (only 12mo, next week, so not so long) but when we do I would hope that we could respect another's approach, even if it differs from our own. It should have been enough that you weren't comfortable.
I'm so relieved for you but it's really made me think about how a couple negotiates differing approaches to parenting - I think I will go and talk to my DH now and agree to humour each other!
I am glad he has admitted he was wrong. It's a shame he showed no respect for the mother of his child, though.
I'm so glad to read your last update, somadaboutthis. I was hoping he'd keep reading and realize how bonkers what he did was.
I am also a very laid back parent but I would never leave my son, 3.9 years, alone at home, ill or not. To do so is just irresponsible.
Good to hear, somad. (I've been watching this thread).
Hope your blood pressure has come down a few notches, and you have a nice, harmonious Easter break.
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