Am I Ready To Stay Home Alone?
The following checklist should be a good indicator that you may be ready to stay home alone if parents agree. This is meant to be helpful, but in no way guarantees your safety.
Ultimately, your parents are responsible for the decision on whether or not you are ready to stay home alone and your parents would accept the consequences of your decision.
Am I Ready To Stay Home Yet? Checklist
- You meet the age requirements of your state or are at least 10-years-old
- You know and can repeat your address
- You know and can repeat your phone number
- You are familiar with two phone numbers to call in case of emergency
- You have demonstrated he/she can carry a key responsibly
- You know you should never tell a person on the phone, or at the door, that your parents are not home. It is recommended that your parents role play different scenarios so you can practice what to say and do
- You know at least two exits in case of a fire
- You know what items are off limits in your parents’ absence (guns, alcohol, matches, drugs, adult television programming, the Internet, etc.) and you agree to leave them alone
- You know the rules allowing others over, when your parents are absent, and agree to follow them
- You have a list of approved activities to occupy your time when your parents are absent
- You can use kitchen appliances responsibly and confidently or have additional options for food without using kitchen appliances
- You have demonstrated the use of door and window locks
- You agree never to go anywhere with anyone without your parents’ permission or your family’s secret password. (You and your parents should create a word no one could guess. Your parent should teach it to you and instruct you never to go anywhere with anyone unless they know the secret word. Even then, if you feel unsure, trust your instincts and call your parent first.)
- Check in with your parents when you come home from school or an activity at your parents’ request
- If you’re fearful or unsure of being home alone tell your parent. You may not be ready to stay home alone yet.