ANSWERS: 10
  • I think I was about 45.
  • my oldest is 11, soon to be 12 and we just started having the carpool drop him off at our home after school and he is by himself for 15-30 minutes before we get home. It has been a couple of weeks and he is doing really well. He practices piano and starts on his chores, so it is not as if he is just slouching in front of the tv.
  • My son was 11, 6th grade.
  • to be honest i never did. but then again i never really went anywhere and if i did they always came with me.
  • My daughter was 12.
  • About 14 i think.
  • There are very few states in the U.S. with legal minimum ages for children home alone, but many state agencies have published guidelines. Georgia, Illiniois, Maryland and Oregon are a few of the states with specific ages specified in their laws. 12 years of age appears to be the most common recommendation. http://www.latchkey-kids.com/latchkey-kids-age-limits.htm provides a state by state comparison with references. This site also provides one guideline from a California agency representative who suggests that 8 year olds and over can be left at home for up to several hours (usually after school before a parent gets home from work).
  • My son is 9 and is home by himself for 15-20 mins after school. He calls me on my cell phone as soon as he gets in the door and starts his homework until I get home. I checked online before making this decision and also saw no actual laws stating ages. The state of MN has a guideline that basically says if you exceed it, the authorities may be called. For his age, it is no more than 2 hours...which I'd never do anyway :]
  • As soon as they can eat a solid Twinkie without choking, about 1 year. Just open and unwrap a box of Twinkies, get their sippy cup of red "fruit drink", plug 5 DVD's into the player, and, woo-hoo! Date night! Plus they look so angelic when you come home and they're asleep on the floor in front of the TV.
  • I never left my children by themselves until they were 13. I would have certainly trusted my daughter to be home alone when she was only 10 because she was very smart and mature for her age, but in my state it's illegal to leave them home alone under the age of 13. I didn't know that until one of my coworkers got a visit from the Social Services department for leaving her 11-year old home alone for 2 hours a day after school. My son, I never, ever left home alone...even to this day because he has a seizure disorder and I'm not comfortable with that. Personally, don't think I ever will. I'm lucky right now that he goes to college locally and lives home, but he plans to go to a university in another state in 2 years. I'm sure I will worry even then!

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