Best Advice on When It’s Appropriate To Leave Your Toddler Alone

Krystal DeVille

Recently, a woman we’ll call Emma took to an online parenting forum asking for advice. Emma lives in a controlled-access apartment with her husband and their 2-year-old. They must go to the lobby whenever they get food delivered since everyone needs a key fob to use the elevator or any public door.

Emma ordered food from a restaurant for her child but made a snack due to delivery delays. The delivery time passed by more than an hour. After eating, her kid took a nap. The food arrived after thirty minutes.

Emma considered waking her kid to pick the food but decided against it. When she returned to the apartment, her child was still sleeping. She felt guilty for leaving her alone, even though she watched her on their baby cam app while away. After talking to her husband about it, he affirmed her decision.

However, after talking to her mother, she said that Emma acted irresponsibly. She should have woken the kid and gone to pick up the food with her. Emma’s dad said her mum’s opinion was ridiculous, but the interaction confused her. She didn’t know if she had put her kid at risk, so she wanted input and advice from other parents.

Here’s what the internet had to say.

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Living in an Apartment Is Complicated

One parent says that not everyone understands the dynamics of living in an apartment. No one would raise any questions if anyone left their child asleep in an upstairs bedroom. They can easily take the trash out or pick up food from their driveway without feeling like they’re neglecting their child. This is no different from this case. “Just ignore your mother.”

Babyproofing Is All You Need

A parent to 27-month-old shares that whenever they need to make a quick trip to put away trash, they put on Ms. Rachel and leave. They have a video feed on their phone to keep tabs on their child. Leaving her inside the house is safer.

Stop Listening to Your Parents

It’s been a while since your parents had kids. One states there is so much research on baby behavior that the parents may not know about. For example, their mother-in-law couldn’t believe they left their child in diapers for hours. According to her, we need to change diapers every hour. She has no idea that the diapers in the current market are of better quality than 40 years ago.

Don’t Ask People for Their Opinion

Another commenter suggests that if their partner and an expert like a pediatrician think they are good parents, that’s enough. They do not worry about what anyone else thinks. At four years, their parents allowed them in the front seat. They do not get to have an opinion about safety.

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Parenting Culture Is Crazy

A parent from Norway explains that their home is babyproofed to the teeth, and they regularly leave their kid roaming. This only applies to short activities like taking out the garbage or collecting the mail. They do not have a baby monitor since they’d need about six cameras to monitor all their child’s movements. Nobody in Norway would consider this neglectful behavior.

Life Happens All The Time

Several commenters agree that bad things are bound to happen everywhere. There’s an equal chance that an undesirable incident could occur while you are with your toddler in the apartment. You have no control over how life events unfold; you can only do your best to keep your child safe.

It’s Just Mom Guilt

Another parent affirms that they did nothing wrong. Sometimes, they let their kid sleep on the top floor of their house and take their older child to play in the backyard. This situation sounds secure since the child was in a safe space when they woke up. Neglectful is a very strong term to use for this situation. What do you think?

This thread inspired this post.

This article was originally published on STEM Education Guide.

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