Kids aged 8-16 are left home alone for four DAYS in TV experiment… and immediately raid their parents’ booze and stay up late playing FortniteNovember 8, 2018
WOULD you trust your kids to stay home alone for four days?
Or would you expect them to trash the house, eat nothing but sweets and stay up all night playing video games?
Four sets of parents put the ultimate trust in their kids, whose ages range from eight to 16, when they left them for four days for a new TV experiment called Alone at Home.
Channel 4 cameras were placed in every room of the house, except the bathroom, during the four-part series and the crew were told to only intervene if someone was in danger.
Raiding the booze cupboard
Millie, 16, who appears in the first episode, was delighted to see the back of her parents, and immediately raided their booze selection – mixing a cocktail of spirits.
Speaking on the show, she said the opportunity was a dream come true. adding: “There was no-one to say: “No, you can’t do this”, just me. I make my own rules.”
Millie was left alone with siblings Ethan, 14, and Laurel, 13, when her physiotherapist mum Natalie and print shop manager stepdad Dan moved out of their Surrey home.
She says the only thing which stopped her from throwing a party was the idea of cleaning up other people’s sick.
Despite insisting she could cope on her own, Millie almost missed her GCSE textiles exam because she left it so late to call a taxi.
The kids blew £50 on cabs over the long weekend, as well as ordering pizzas and other takeaways, and wrecked the garden by throwing eggs and flour at each other during a fight.
With the plates piling up in the kitchen sink, Millie had a bit of an epiphany, and later told her mum: “I don’t want to cause you any stress any more and I want to help you with the chores, so you don’t have to stress about them any more.”
Sweets for breakfast and ice cream for dinner
The second week saw full-time mum Alison, 50, and logistics consultant Andrew, 47, leave their kids Lola, 12, Travis, ten, and Charlie, 15, who has Down’s Syndrome, alone in their huge West Yorkshire house.
Alison was terrified the younger kids’ fights would get out of hand and worried how fans would view their decision to leave Charlie.
She said: “To walk away from my children was the biggest risk I’ve ever taken,” admitting she worried: “Were they going to kill each other in the first five minutes?”
Lola and Travis were soon gorging on sweets for breakfast, joking: “Mum would go ballistic” if she saw them, as well as ice cream with chocolate toppings for dinner.
Charlie spent most of his time in his room, playing video games on his X-Box and eating pizza and Fanta.
While Travis invited five mates round for a sleepover on day 2, which saw a huge water bomb fight out in the garden.
Taking on the role of mum, Lola took an exhausted Charlie to bed, and organised a trip to a theme park on the Sunday.
But it all proved too much for the school girl, who broke down in tears at the station when she couldn’t work out which train they needed to get home.
Lola spent hours cleaning to prepare for her parents’ return, but admitted she was sad to be losing her newfound “freedom”.
Pot Noodles for breakfast and late-night Fortnite sessions
South Londoners Eleanor, a marketing consultant, and James, a solicitor, also left their four boys home alone – who are aged between eight and 13.
Twins Alexander and Nicholas, 13, William, 11, and Edward, eight, live under strict rules like no more than one hour of gaming a day – and bedtimes which see them all tucked up by 9.30pm.
But, with their parents away, the boys feasted on Pot Noodles, cookies and chocolate for breakfast, before staying up late playing Fortnite and drinking Coke.
The sleep-deprived lads even set their alarms an hour early to watch TV before school.
Eleanor, who suffered from severe post-natal depression after the birth of her third son, said she wanted to do the show because: “Helicopter parenting doesn’t do any of us any good in the long run.”
The twins had seven mates over for pizza one night, but struggled to get them to leave four hours later, with Nicholas saying he felt “overwhelmed” by all the mess.
Independent Alexander took himself into the city centre, for a trip up The Shard and an £18 meal in China Town.
While his brother Nicholas managed to burn his dinner of fried eggs and the younger boys overslept on the last day, ending up three hours late for primary school.
The house was a mess when they returned, but Eleanor and James said they’re more confident about leaving the boys alone now.
Forgetting to shower
Nutritionist Alison, 47, from Nottingham, said she’s overcompensated for being a single mum-of-four and has “created a monster” as a result.
She left Anya, 15, Freya, 13, Evie, ten, and Isla, eight, alone for the week.
Alison admitted: “I have friends who still do their children’s meals and washing after they have left home and that’s the road I’m going down if I’m not careful and I definitely don’t want that.”
Overall the girls coped well, with the eldest two cooking while the younger girls did laundry – and the family also enjoyed a day out to a trampoline park on the Saturday.
But it wasn’t until three days into the experiment that they realised Evie and Isla hadn’t showered since mum left.
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The week was very eye-opening for Anya, who told the cameras: “I realise how much she does for us all. Now I know, I can help her out more.
“I just don’t want to grow up because you have to do so much work.”
We can totally relate, Anya.