NaBloPoMo, Day 6 - Why you don't leave a 16-year-old home alone for a week

Monday morning. While my parents and I were visiting on Saturday morning, they shared that their next door neighbors had left their 16-year-old son home alone for a week while they went to Mexico to vacation in their timeshare. Guess what happened? Shockingly, the kid through a major rager party on Friday night with his buddies. *gasp* Can you imagine that? An empty house, 50 kids on a high school team, and they threw a party - wow. You know what's worse? When the parents got home, they yelled at my parents for not having gone over there and cleaned the little beggars out. Hello? My parents are both over 65, they had no legal authority to enter that house without the parents being home, and they would never have been able to clean 50 rowdy teenagers out of that house. I'm so angry that I'm about ready to call Child Protective Services on them because I'm a required reporter for child abuse/neglect and leaving a child under 18 at home alone without a caretaker for an extended period of time is illegal in California. (Yeah, I'm mean like that.)

So, my Top Five list for today is Top Five Reasons Not to Leave a 16-Year-Old at Home Alone:

1. Group-think ("everyone else is doing it, why shouldn't I?")

2. Lack of good nutritional judgment ("potato chips aren't a veggie???")

3. General untidiness ("why use the dining room table when the couch is closer to the TV?")

4. The goodwill of your neighbors (no one likes having to call the cops at 10:30 p.m., midnight, and 1:00 a.m. in order to be able to sleep peacefully)

5. Because it's illegal ('nuff said).


I say go ahead and call CPS. Though I am kind of wondering why your parents didn't call the police.

I don't believe that high school age children should ever be left alone even overnight. There's just too much that can happen. Even if you trust your kid, you can't always trust his schoolmates if (when?) they find out.
JessiferSeabs said…
Dude, I was a goody-goody-two-shoes, flute-toting BAND GEEK in high school, who was scared SHITLESS to do anything wrong, and my parents STILL wouldn't leave me alone for one lousy night when they were out of town. How stupid do you have to be to leave your kid alone for a week while you go on VACATION?

That's stupid.

And I'm a mandatory reporter now too, and I would also be tempted to report them.
BethK said…
OMG! And yet how convenient for them to have *someone else* to blame for not disciplining their child... I don't know if you can do anything after the fact, but I would let them know that if they do it again, your first call will be to the cops (because it's not you parents job to discipline their child) and your second call will be to DFS, or CPS, or DSS, or which ever acronym CA uses.
Jake Silver said…
I've really liked all your NaBloPoMo entries so far.

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