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29 July 2009 @ 02:21 pm

How old were you the first time you remember your parents leaving you home alone?

funner'n a sack a weaselsmoominmolly on July 29th, 2009 06:31 pm (UTC)
Alone with my brothers, who are 4-6 years older, or alone just me? (And I assume you mean for an evening?)
funner'n a sack a weaselsmoominmolly on July 29th, 2009 06:42 pm (UTC)
Upon consideration, given that I can't remember being left home alone without my brothers before the age of 14, I'll say: 6.
Stephghislaine on July 29th, 2009 06:32 pm (UTC)
6yo for quick trips to the grocery store. 9yo for hours during summer days.
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - ghislaine on July 29th, 2009 09:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
veek on July 29th, 2009 06:33 pm (UTC)
For how long? Several hours, I was six or seven or so? For a long time I was terrified of the dark, though, so they made an effort to be there then.
veek on July 29th, 2009 07:01 pm (UTC)
There's one exception to this: when I was... two? A toddler, in any case, we went to visit friends in another city. (Kiev?) They had a standard poodle named Rikki (as in Tikki Tavi), who was reportedly an expert babysitter. They left me alone with her for a couple of hours. When they came back, the two of us were curled up together on her little doggy rug.

I don't remember any of this, but this story is told with some regularity. :)
Rowan: Summermzrowan on July 29th, 2009 06:34 pm (UTC)
Hmmm...it must have been the summer I turned 9. Mom went off to work and told me to head over to my sitter's house whenever I felt like it. I was sort of stunned by the casual granting of such limitless freedom. ;-)

I hung out at home for about half the day, I think. The thing that sticks out most in my head is having little idea how to feed myself and ending up eating corn niblets out of the can, then getting that vaguely ill feeling one does from not eating enough real food. That what was what persuaded me to head out, in the end.
heinleinfanheinleinfan on July 29th, 2009 06:37 pm (UTC)
I was young enough that I can't really put a year on it.


I do remember, distinctly, being 11 years old, and being left home alone, and that being "the time" that my mother and stepfather considered me old enough and knowledgeable enough to think about The Gun.

There were lots of guns in our home. I would never have dreamed of touching a single one of them without permission, or when I was at home alone. There was The Gun that was generally considered the Home Defense weapon for me and my mother, the little 35 that was hers.

On this night, before leaving Mom and Richard sat down with me first and we had a talk about that I knew where the pistol was that I had practiced the most with, we went to it and I had to get it out, check the safety, load it, and undo all that, etc. Then we talked about how since I was old enough now and knew the safety, that if anything terrible should happen I should get the gun and use it as I had been taught (aim for the body mass and fire two shots, do not wait to give a warning, just shoot), and the various contingencies for "after shooting".

So from that point forward, there was always a brief "you know where the gun is and what to do" talk before they left me home alone.

Chancemiss_chance on July 29th, 2009 09:18 pm (UTC)

Where were you living at the time?
(no subject) - heinleinfan on July 29th, 2009 09:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - catness on July 30th, 2009 01:28 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - (Anonymous) on July 30th, 2009 01:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
elvendollelvendoll on July 29th, 2009 06:39 pm (UTC)
I was 6, and took the opportunity to play with all of the makeup/lotions my mom had around - which didn't go over well.

Next time, I was 10.
T Streichsweetbaboo on July 29th, 2009 06:46 pm (UTC)
What do you think we are, Monkeys on Sticks???goat on July 29th, 2009 06:51 pm (UTC)
I, too, had older brothers, and there were always people coming and going at my house, so it's really hard to say. Whenever it did happen it was apparently not significant enough for me to remember.
tickles, the angry lemurclara_girl on July 29th, 2009 06:52 pm (UTC)
~7-8 to stay home for under an hour, ~12 to stay home with my brother and ~13 to babysit other, unrelated kids.
Chipceo on July 29th, 2009 07:05 pm (UTC)
My mother went back to work when I was 10 or 11. For a year or so she was teaching at U. Lowell (now UMass-Lowell) twice a week, and then she got a full-time engineering job and I became a latchkey kid. Other than that, my parents didn't go out in the evening that much and I had older siblings, so there was pretty much never an occasion when I'd end up home by myself.
Mizarchivist: Timewarpmizarchivist on July 29th, 2009 07:43 pm (UTC)
I actually called my mom and asked her since I had no specific memory of Sudden Freedom. She says, and I agree, that I was probably in 5th grade.
When I was in 1st grade, Mom went from stay at home mom to art store owner. I'd go to the store after school, or a neighbor's. Well, after a while, I got tired of going to the store, which seems ridiculous now, but it's not like I had access to any of my books or tapes or specific toys at the store.

However-- I was off on my own plenty to go to the pool, library, playground (across the street from the house), or around the neighborhood when I was younger than 10.
Cat of LOVE!kimberlogic on July 29th, 2009 08:21 pm (UTC)
I was a latchkey kid starting at 5.
Doug Orleansdougo on July 29th, 2009 08:45 pm (UTC)
I know I was a latchkey kid no later than 3rd grade, so, 7. But might have been earlier too.
A Hog and A Frog Cavort on a Blogjennylisa on July 29th, 2009 08:49 pm (UTC)
My first brother was born when I was 4.5, and the second when I was 9. We had babysitters who were supposedly there to watch my brothers and not be, but who knows how accurate that was. :D I was definitely babysitting for both of them by the time I was 11 though.
evolution, and some other stuffjacflash on July 29th, 2009 08:53 pm (UTC)
My mom started going to nursing school when I was in second grade. That's when I was given a house key for the first time -- to let myself in after school, because I got home a couple of hours before my parents did. My little sister was at a day care -- Mom picked her up on the way home -- so I was really home alone for those hours. But there were neighbors around, so it seemed okay. I don't remember ever having a problem.