S.W. asks from Maineville, OH on August 08, 2009
This Request Was Removed
This request was removed.
So What Happened?™
I decided to remove this request.
S.K. answers from Cincinnati on August 08, 2009
12 is the most often recommended age to be left alone for a few hours, only a few states like Illinois and Maryland have a set minimum legal age. Everywhere else you have no protection - it is judged on an individual basis. And given you have 4 kids and they range from newborn to 9 (as the oldest!!)if someone sees you leave your kids in the car and they call the cops, cps is going to be called in.
Something else I would consider - you're leaving your 9 yr "in charge" of the other kids - if something actually happened and one or more of the younger ones were taken because your 9 yr old CANNOT overpower an adult, how is she going to live with that the rest of her life? Please don't do that to your children. Don't put their lives at risk like that and don't make your daughter assume responsibilities that she cannot possibly fulfill adequately.
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P.R. answers from Indianapolis on August 09, 2009
I am sure I understand why you removed your request. You made a judgement call that might not have been the best one.
I read where these people are jumping up and down about what age it is legal to leave a child in charge of other children and I am wondering where they got their information. I worked for FSSA for awhile, my brother is a Hendricks Country Sheriff's Deputy, and frankly I don't know "the law" in Indiana about this age thing.
I will tell you this much. I am 57 years old and I was babysitting outside of the home at age 11. I sat for a family with children who were 8, 5, and 2, a family with a 2 month old, a family with a 6 month old, etc. And yes, I babysat for my brother who is 9 years younger than I am! True, my parents were home when I went out to babysit and my grandparents lived like 5 minutes away when my parents were out so there was someone I could call in an emergency, but I was responsible for the other children from the time their parents left until they got home. I bathed, played, fixed meals, did dishes, and put the children to bed at 11.
I am now raising an 11 YO boy who frankly I am not comfortable leaving at home while I run to the store alone because his judgement isn't what I feel comfortable with. A lot of life decisions are based on the maturity of the children involved and whether or not they respect the child in charge.
Don't beat yourself up. You are not a bad parent.
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R. answers from Indianapolis on August 08, 2009
S.... you have lost your mind if you think a 9 year old is mature enough, strong enough or rational enough to protect your other children from a car jacker, child molester or other unquestionable types.
It is not even legal to leave a child at home alone until age 12, the legal age for babysitting.
Do you not watch the news? Do you not see the terrible things that happen to children while left alone in a car. I know you think " I am only gone for 15 minutes, they are watching a movie" Please S., be the adult, if you can't take them into the store with you, then find another time to go to the store for your errands.
I work for DCS, I take children away on a weekly basis, I talk to parents who say they "love" their children, my question to you is this: do you believe that your love will keep them safe if someone wanted to harm them while you were in the store for "only" 15 minutes.
The woman who was talking to your kids should have called the police, and you were lucky, what if she were the one who wanted to cause harm to them.
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M.N. answers from Bloomington on August 09, 2009
I see that you removed this request and really I don't blame you.
I just wanted to say that some/most of these posts probably made you or could make a person feel like a bad or horrible parent. I just wanted to say that while I do NOT agree with leaving children in the car for any period of time or for any reason, I don't believe that this makes you a bad parent...just a poor judgement call.
I hope that you are not feeling overly beaten up by the responses that you got on this topic, I know that I probably would be feeling pretty beaten up had I posted the question and gotten the responses that you did.
We all make decisions that others may not agree with and we all learn from those decisions.
Good luck and remember that one questionable decision does not make us bad parents, it just makes us human.
Also, just a side note, after a little research from what I can find Indiana does not actually have any laws that govern this issue or the issue of at what age you can leave a child at home a lone. The lady that works for CPS seems to have a very specific age and I would actually like to know where she got that age from or if it is just a recomendation. Just curious.
N.K. answers from Cleveland on August 08, 2009
Sorry but I agree with Rebecca, I am asuming you leave the infant with the 9 y/o? I have a very responsible 11 y/o and my other kids are 8,5 and 3 and would never leave them in my van for any period of time I don't even run into the gas station to pay I pay at the pump or my husband does it. It is definately NOT ok to leave young children in the car I am not sure what will happen if a police officer or other authority sees you do this but they will most likely take them from you for some period of time.
S.C. answers from Fort Wayne on August 08, 2009
I don't really think it's ok to ever leave kids in the car. If you wouldn't leave them home alone, don't leave them in the car alone. I don't doubt that your 9 year old is responsible, but I doubt that she would know what to do if a dangerous situation presented itself. Case in point, what happened at CVS. That woman could have been a child abductor. She could have came in the van, snatched one (or all) of your children before you got back out from the store. It's sad, but our world is so dangerous now. It's just not safe for kids to be left alone like that. I can imagine that it's a bit of a hassle to unbuckle four kids, get them in the store, pick up the one or two things that you need, then buckle them all back in. However, it's way better than having something horrible happen to your children.