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Concerns about neighbour's children

(7 Posts)
juliettaa Wed 21-Sep-16 16:42:22

NC for this ...........

I'm posting for advice about what to do about what appears (to me) to be child neglect.

A neighbour has 2 children around the ages of 13 and 11 (one male, one female). They are frequently left on their own during the evening and late into the night while their mum goes out drinking. She often comes home drunk and on one occasion she set her house on fire as she fell asleep and left the chip pan on. The fire was pretty serious and they all had to be treated in hospital for smoke inhalation.

Recently the children were out for the day; they returned home around 7pm and could not get into the house as their mum was out. After watching them for a couple of minutes, it was clear they didn't have a key so I went to get dressed (I'd just got out of the bath) with the intention of going over to see if they needed any help. I don't 'know' these children, I just see them in passing in the street but it worried me they couldn't get into their home.

I got dressed, went out and they weren't there. DH and I walked around the neighbourhood but we couldn't see them. The house remained in darkness all evening.

My parents were very abusive and neglectful and those children arriving home to a locked house triggered horrible memories of my own childhood, so I'm left wondering if it's me? Am I overreacting or is my neighbour neglecting her children?

I appreciate the mum needs a social life, but the children should be considered first and foremost (which is something my own parents never, ever did).

I'm not sure if this is relevant, but the boy (who's about 13) has Asperger's and I wonder if this would upset him more, to arrive home and not be able to get into his house?

I'd be grateful for any advice.

KarmaNoMore Wed 21-Sep-16 16:47:13

The only thing that is a worry is for her to be drunk around them. I wouldn't let DS on his own at that age but I remember being baby sat by teenagers, one only about 12 herself.

If you didn't find the kids, they may have gone somewhere else, she may have a rule of what to do if they have no keys. If you found them sleeping out by all means call the police.

HereIAm20 Wed 21-Sep-16 16:59:35

Perhaps they were told that I'm going to Grannys and if I am not back when you get back from Grannys come round to hers. Insert auntie Pam, Dad or other name where applicable.

At that age they are probably responsible enough to be left on their own

Kneejerk Wed 21-Sep-16 17:23:56

If you are worried about a child/children you can phone you do not need to say who you are. The school should know too.. anonymous calls can be very helpful.. ask to speak to the schools safeguarding officer. You don't need to say who you are. I used to work in safeguarding, you could change the children's lives x

PrimarySchoolQ Wed 21-Sep-16 17:44:53

Report it and let them decide whether she is being neglectful or not. Don't put the pressure on yourself to decide either way.

juliettaa Wed 21-Sep-16 18:12:01

Thank you all for replying.

I did toy with the idea of calling SS. The boy is known to SS/CAMHS but due to my own issues/messed up thought processes about my own mum, I don't want the neighbour to get into trouble which is absolutely stupid, but FOG takes over.

Thank you for the suggestion about contacting the school's safeguarding officer. That didn't occur to me.

Kneejerk Wed 21-Sep-16 18:12:15

Please do. The school will be trained to ask questions and extract the truth carefull, then to act accordingly.. so will social services. Sometimes a visit from social services is all that is needed for a parent to wise up to what they are doing. I know the services are not always right, but it needs further investigation

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