Would you leave your 12 year old in the gift shop...

Discussion in 'Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies' started by ShannonMB, Jan 6, 2013.

  1. disneyfanlincoln

    disneyfanlincoln Mouseketeer

    Oct 23, 2011
    Just wanted to say thank you to seven dwarfs for sharing that terrible experience. I'm so sorry this has happened to your family. It's certainly given me a new perspective and I will be on guard at WDW. Sending you all my kindest thoughts...
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  3. pixarmom

    pixarmom DIS Veteran

    Oct 20, 2009
    We have three boys, ages 5, 12 and 13, and I feel the same. They are responsible and (when need be!) mature, but I'm just uneasy about others. Most likely, everything would be fine, but I'd be worried enough that it wouldn't be worth it for me. With three kids, I've skipped a significant number of rides and attractions over the years (including ToT - my favorite!) and I'm OK with that.
  4. Luv2CtheMouse

    Luv2CtheMouse DIS Veteran

    Mar 12, 2006
    I would not. On our last trip there was a guy, standing about 5 feet from his wife, looking at two fully-clothed young women (19 - 22ish) rubbing his "business" with his palm/fingers and kinda licking his lips. This was in a store, out in the open, not concealed in the darkness at all. He was escorted out by security. He didnt appear to be drunk and didnt appear to have a mental disability. His wife was totally oblivious to his actions prior to security showing up.
  5. North of Mouse

    North of Mouse DIS Veteran

    Mar 31, 2011
    :thumbsup2 Agree with this poster. Our daughter was very mature at 12 and was already babysitting next door (took a course, had certificate).

    Did not hesitate to let her be alone with designated check-in times. She was taught how to handle herself and get help, if needed.
  6. LeahA

    LeahA DIS Veteran

    Jan 28, 2000
    I say have her wait in line with you both and then when it's your turn to ride she can go take the chicken exit and just wait for you at the ride exit. So, she will only be alone a minimal amount of time. I waited in line for TOT with my family, took the chicken exit which was the elevator down to a waiting area, there were a ton of people, families, kids and such waiting. So she would be inside the ride, right at the exit, not roaming around outside. Advise her to sit still until your off and do not go with anyone except you or without speaking to a CM.
  7. FantasiaMagic

    FantasiaMagic DIS Veteran

    Jun 11, 2012
    Yes, I think she would be fine. There is always a CM or security around somewhere and if you got FPs that would decrease the time she would have to wait for you.
  8. ramsfootball92

    ramsfootball92 Mouseketeer

    Jan 18, 2008
    I agree with the previous posters in utilizing the chicken exit. I took my daughter and 2 friends for her 13 birthday. 1 of the friends wasn't big on rides, so we all entered together and I used the chicken exit for myself and one friend. The chicken exit is pretty close to boarding on most rides so the wait would be minimal...
  9. bookgirl

    bookgirl DIS Veteran

    Oct 22, 2006
    If she is mature enough I don't see why she can't sit or stand somewhere and wait for you to ride on something. I think the gift shop may be boring after 10 minutes so you might include a nearby seating area or bench. I might make sure she has something to keep her amused if the wait is too long, (ipod or game) but I don't see why she can't hang on a bench with a snack somewhere.
  10. Pixiedust34

    Pixiedust34 <font color=blue>It's like I'm stuck in a music ti

    Jun 23, 2005
    It depends upon the maturity level of the girl, but I would let my dd alone in a gift shop. I did let my dd (just turned 14 before the trip) have free roaming time for a little while in Studios and Epcot, and it went fine.

    Of course, no place anywhere is guaranteed to be 100% safe, but in a gift shop with lots of people and cast members it's a pretty safe environment.

    If you're uncomfortable with letting her alone for long, have her use the chicken exit.
  11. nchulka

    nchulka <font color=purple>it was funny when the creepy gu

    Jun 9, 2010
    Using the chicken exit is fine, especially if she wants to see the pre-show or you think she may change her mind and ride. Leaving her in the gift shop to begin with is fine, even letting her go ride a separate ride and meet back up with you is fine. Heck I did that with DS and he was 7!! After our separate rides he was right there waiting where I told him to be. Don't worry, she is not a little kid anymore, she'll be driving and on her own in a few years. You need to start increasing the amount of freedom she has if she's going to be prepared.

    Random bad things to occasionally happen, that's life. Is it likely to happen to you, not really. Just the other day I heard about a small plane crashing into someones house, this doesn't make me afraid to sit in my living room. I know tragedy can strike anytime, anywhere, I also know it's statistically unlikely and highly unpreventable anyway so why worry about it.
  12. Robbi

    Robbi DIS Veteran

    Oct 21, 2012
    This is a good idea and one that I will use in the future. I'm the ride chicken in our group and waiting-even with FPs or a GAC- can seem forever plus there's no place to sit. This way your child ( and me ) can visit with you and only have to stand around the gift shop for a short time.

    Edited to add- I would trust a 12 yo who is mature. Just wanted to point out that the wait can be BORING.
  13. katdralion

    katdralion Mouseketeer

    May 13, 2009
    My son is 10 and I would let him take the chicken exit and wait for us in the gift shop as there are always plenty of families and CMs around.

    Gents' toilets however are another matter entirely. I have heard some terrrible stories of things that go on in gents' public toilets.
    In Manchester this Summer, a 14 year old boy was raped by 2 men in a city centre, dept store toilet .
    So "ridiculous " or not, if I am in an area I don't know or I feel at all unsure I will make my son use the ladies' toilet! I do let him use the gents' toilets at Disney but will wait outside and would be prepared to go in if I thought there was a problem.
  14. a1tinkfans

    a1tinkfans Spreading Some Pixie Dust Today!

    Aug 12, 2006
    As far as toilets, I think a male child that is 10 should be in a mens room, with mom/dad or an adult just outside the entrance waiting, with instructions to... use a stall, wash up and get out. Kids need to be taught safety and empower them to "go with their gut..ie, feel something "weird" when they walk in, they should walk right out. I think Disney is the same as any other public place, its not any "safer" as some want to believe...its real people, good And bad...
    As far as a 12 year old being left in a gift shop...well, Id rather not do that, waits and rides can be long and some even break down, ever get stuck on a ride?? Its happened to us several times...so IF I even considered it, Id have the child with me until they could exit thru the ride, theyd have a cell phone with them and told to Not leave that gift store at all, and to ONLY speak with a CM behind a counter if the need arises. Personally Id forgo the rides and have the friend do a single rider where they could.
    OP: go with your gut, you know your child best...every child is different!
    Have a good trip!
  15. goofyintoronto

    goofyintoronto I really wanted to like it, but I didnt.

    Mar 29, 2011
    I agree. I totally would leave my 12 year old alone. Disney is one of the safest places to be. There are tons of kids and parents around. CM too. She will be fine! I agree with the pp about letting your DD take the chicken exit on the rides and wait at the gift shop.
  16. AppleSister1

    AppleSister1 DIS Veteran

    Nov 3, 2002
    We just left my 12 year old nephew alone in the gift shop of TOT last week. (He hates TOT but my 10 year old nephew loves it.) He was fine, he has a phone, and he's been there tons of times so he knows his way around. We actually let them go off to the men's room, to stores, etc, by themselves a lot this trip. If they can't spread their wings in Disney, where can they?? There's bad stuff happening all over, you can't control that. But at least at Disney, security is amazing, and CMs all over will help kids that need it. And they were fine and thrilled with some independence.
  17. alecshawn

    alecshawn WDW Fanatic

    Dec 25, 2012
    MY LAND YES!!! we would. When i was 12..we ran alone in the park and met up later. I have no issues allowing a 12 y.o. to do that.
  18. gemini2727

    gemini2727 Mouseketeer

    Mar 19, 2009
    I like the chicken exit idea myself. That way you're still spending the time together at least:) That would be a long time alone in the shops, knowing ride lines...
  19. PetePanMan

    PetePanMan Mouseketeer

    Oct 4, 2010
    based on your description of your daughter, yes definitely.
  20. CentralFloridian99

    CentralFloridian99 The guy who will ask all the celebrities if they w

    Jun 23, 2011
    If she has a phone and/or stays by a CM she'll be fine.
  21. Albytaps

    Albytaps Mickey's Biggest Fan

    Jul 6, 2007
    Didn't we learn anything from Finding Nemo? Let's see what the little squirt does flying solo. Crush is a very smart turtle.

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