|Home Alone: Are You Ready?
Did you know that in the U.S., almost half of all kids aged 6 to 13 are home alone for part of the day? The boys in the Home Alone movies certainly had fun, but the whole experience can be freaky sometimes. These days, even a lot of adults are scared to be alone in the house! It's TOTALLY understandable if you, or someone you know, are nervous about being home alone.
Take Jessi and her brother Joey. For over five years now, they've been taking care of themselves until their Mom comes home from work. Jessi says that the worst thing about it is when she or her brother is locked out. Then they have to wait on the porch until the other gets home! Sometimes, both of them get locked out! Fortunately, they each have a cell phone so they can call their mom when that happens.
Your parents think you're ready, but do YOU?
Joey admits that he likes being able to watch or listen to TV shows and music he likes. It's more freedom, he says...but it's also more responsibility.
So there you are, listening to that CD your parents hate. Then: what's THAT? You hear a noise outside. It sounds like it could be a person on the front doorstep, and there's been a string of robberies in the area lately. Suddenly, your unsupervised freedom doesn't feel so safe anymore.
It's a normal feeling and it doesn't mean you're a "baby." There's always stuff going on in the world to shake our feelings of security. You might feel totally fine about being alone when you're 10. Then, two years later, something happens that makes you feel different about it. Every person and every home environment is unique.
If you have worries about being home alone, it's really important to speak up about them, even though it may cost money to get a sitter or your parent has to rearrange his or her schedule.
How do you know if you're ready? Ask yourself these questions.
Maybe you're a home-alone pro and answered yes to all the questions. Good going! Now you can take it even farther and make sure you know how to be safe during your time alone.
Safe Home Checklist
Think about setting aside time to check batteries on some of these safety items. Perhaps you do this on the days you practice fire drills. We talk about fire drills in Emergencies.