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Children Shopping Alone In Stores

Bangor Mall

Today is what I’m calling a “My Opinion Monday.” This is a chance for you the reader, listener and the overall audience to ask my opinion on anything from international policy to my favorite type of food. Anything, any topic, but you only have today, Monday. If it becomes a hit, I will make it a weekly feature and I will give my take on a weekly basis.

My first question for a take on a subject; Tammy is interested in my thoughts on this, “I am curious on an opinion to children being left to wander a store without parental supervision.”

My response: with children under 12, I don’t believe it’s a good idea under really any circumstance to let them roam a store, especially the larger stores. The only exception maybe if you’re stuck in line at the checkout and you need to grab something that you forgot I can see asking your 11-year-old to go grab it quickly. That being said, it’s always a judgement call regarding time of day, store location, etc. For example if you’re at the grocery store or another major retailer at 10 pm, those places can be a crazy at night so that would be a definite “no” in my opinion.

Now for tweens and young teens in stores buying on their own. I think it’s okay again depending on the surroundings and time of day. Every child is different when it comes to maturity and knowing what’s appropriate and what’s not. Recently I saw two 12-14 year-olds riding through the Auburn Walmart in the early evening on Razor Scooters. That is dangerous, and at the very least irritating. If the child is 12-14 and they’re checking out the clothes while the parent is trying to decide between hot dogs and burgers for the barbeque, I’m okay with that. I’d be okay for tweens and teens if they’re at a mall with friends shopping with a cell where the parent or family member drops them off and picks them up (if they’re too young to drive).

Where it comes to stores, and again time and place falls into the judgement call, but what bugs me more than kids alone in stores are the parents that leave their kids in the car while they shop. I can’t tell you how many requests I get from kids in cars at a grocery store parking lots waiting Mom and or Dad to get what they need.

Tammy, I hope you weren’t offended, but you asked. Have a great day!

If you want my opinion on a subject matter, comment on this post.

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