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Parents who *don't* take their children on trips/vacations

Aunt Spiker

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((I would really like it if there was a proper debate forum for familiy and child-care issues instead of sticking these issues in with off-topic discussion in lieu of a debate forum . . . but there isn't.))

So - What are your thoughts on parents who don't take their children on vacations or trips out of town? (Example: mother/father plan a trip to Seattle for a week. They leave their children, ages 3 and 5, with Grandma for the week)

Is it selfish?

Is it neglectful?

Does the child's age make this practice more or less acceptable?

Does the situation or reason for the trip make this more / less acceptable (example - visiting a sick relative, planning an anniversary trip, or traveling for leisure)?
 

rivrrat

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Depends. Do they do it every single time they go somewhere? And never take their kids anywhere? If so, then it's mean and neglectful, IMO. Kids need to get out and do things like that too. One thing I can thank my parents for, we never lacked in traveling and meeting new people, going to new places, and learning.

But, mom and dad need time to themselves too. If mom and dad take a vacation without the kids once in awhile, or even annually, IMO it could be BEST for the kids because it gives mom and dad the respite they need to continue being engaging, happy parents and a happy couple. I think more parents SHOULD take vacations without the kids. It could help with the high divorce rate in this country if couples start to put some of their needs as a couple higher on the priority list, where they belong. A happy couple makes for happier parents makes for better parents.
 

missypea

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So - What are your thoughts on parents who don't take their children on vacations or trips out of town? (Example: mother/father plan a trip to Seattle for a week. They leave their children, ages 3 and 5, with Grandma for the week)

Is it selfish?

Is it neglectful?

Does the child's age make this practice more or less acceptable?

Does the situation or reason for the trip make this more / less acceptable (example - visiting a sick relative, planning an anniversary trip, or traveling for leisure)?

As a kid, my folks always took us somewhere for a vacation during the summer AND they always went somewhere by themselves for a vacation without us. Gary and I continued this plan when we became parents. It worked for us.

I was surprised at how many of Ryan's friends didn't go on "vacation"....ever. He was always allowed to bring a friend with him on our little trips, most of his little friends had never been outside the city limits. I remember feeling bad for those little guys.
 

aps

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What both rivrrat and missypea said.

My parents did exactly what missypea describes. They took us to a ton of places, but woudl take time for just the two of them. I loved both vacations. My parents would disperse us among friends, and I loved staying with a friend for a week and experiencing day-to-day life in a different family. I remember saying "shut up" one of those times, and the mother told me they never use those two words in their house. It was the first time I realized how effing rude those two words are. So I stopped saying them because of that!

But my husband and I have and will continue to take our own vacations. The last one was last fall. My parents came to stay with my son. The bond that formed between the three of them was beautiful to watch.

I think parents who never take trips without their children have something missing in their marriage. How could you not want to be alone with your spouse for even a couple of nights? This business of, "I can't be without my children for more than 24 hours." Oh brother.
 

Aunt Spiker

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I think parents who never take trips without their children have something missing in their marriage. How could you not want to be alone with your spouse for even a couple of nights? This business of, "I can't be without my children for more than 24 hours." Oh brother.
Hmm - interesting.

I have 4 children and who will watch them? My aging mother and father. While they enjoy the company of the grand kids - 4 kids is a lot to deal with and it's very stressful. Instead of it being fun it will likely be a headache, at the least, for them . . . something I'd rather not put them through.

I've never taken an extended trip without my kids - I would never see the purpose or pleasure in doing so. My parents have, occasionally, watched them over one night - but I never went out of town during that time. They stayed at Grandma's and we went back home, watched movies and slept in late - and it wasn't really enjoyable, actually. This was back when my husband first returned from Iraq and was going through some serious PTSD issues, he needed peace and quiet - it was a necessity more so than for fun - it was so unenjoyable that I'd rather just not do it, again.

Yet taking family trips is a thrill - we have no time limits, we can be gone as long as possible - do whatever we want - and I don't have to worry about what the kids are doing, how my parents are, or what trouble is going on.

My sister has 2 kids under the age of 4 and several times a year she and her husband take trips all over without the kids. They've gone to New Orleans, Chicago, Seattle, even Honolulu - without them. The only time they've taken the kids on a trip was to visit their Aunt in DC a few times. To me, how she goes about it and why she does it, just seems wrong.

i think my husband's deployments divide us up enough that I never, intentionally, want to do it - he goes out of town maybe upwards of 20 weeks out of the year, and that separation is plenty enough for all of us. It's actually quite stressful.
 

jallman

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As a kid, my folks always took us somewhere for a vacation during the summer AND they always went somewhere by themselves for a vacation without us. Gary and I continued this plan when we became parents. It worked for us.

I was surprised at how many of Ryan's friends didn't go on "vacation"....ever. He was always allowed to bring a friend with him on our little trips, most of his little friends had never been outside the city limits. I remember feeling bad for those little guys.
That's exactly what my parents did with us, too. Disneyworld or White Lake was for us. Atlantic City and Vegas was for them.
 

aps

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Hmm - interesting.

I have 4 children and who will watch them? My aging mother and father. While they enjoy the company of the grand kids - 4 kids is a lot to deal with and it's very stressful. Instead of it being fun it will likely be a headache, at the least, for them . . . something I'd rather not put them through.

I've never taken an extended trip without my kids - I would never see the purpose or pleasure in doing so. My parents have, occasionally, watched them over one night - but I never went out of town during that time. They stayed at Grandma's and we went back home, watched movies and slept in late - and it wasn't really enjoyable, actually. This was back when my husband first returned from Iraq and was going through some serious PTSD issues, he needed peace and quiet - it was a necessity more so than for fun - it was so unenjoyable that I'd rather just not do it, again.

Yet taking family trips is a thrill - we have no time limits, we can be gone as long as possible - do whatever we want - and I don't have to worry about what the kids are doing, how my parents are, or what trouble is going on.

My sister has 2 kids under the age of 4 and several times a year she and her husband take trips all over without the kids. They've gone to New Orleans, Chicago, Seattle, even Honolulu - without them. The only time they've taken the kids on a trip was to visit their Aunt in DC a few times. To me, how she goes about it and why she does it, just seems wrong.

i think my husband's deployments divide us up enough that I never, intentionally, want to do it - he goes out of town maybe upwards of 20 weeks out of the year, and that separation is plenty enough for all of us. It's actually quite stressful.
To me, there is a difference between not really having the option to go on vacation without your children versus refusing to go on vacation without your children.

I have 3 siblings, and my parents sent us all to different houses. That's how they did it.

I can see why you feel what your sister is doing is wrong. Several times a year seems like a lot to not bring their kids with them on at least one of those trips.

To each his own. I thoroughly enjoy my husband's company. The conversations we have when it's just the two of us are different than those we have in front of our son, and I want those conversations with him. THis isn't to say that you dont' enjoy your husband's company, but I cannot understand how someone can not want to have alone time for a good length of time with just their spouse--the person to whom you promised to be with forever and ever. *shrugs shoulders*
 

Aunt Spiker

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That, I imagine, takes a lot of balls - to trust someone to take care of your kids while you're away. I just couldn't do it. I'd be too worried, couldn't relax, I'd expect the phone to ring and some emergency to crop up. I imagine my husband is fine with it - I watch the kids all the time while he goes away on business (military stuff) - but that's still a little different.

I remember my sisters going to friend's places sometimes when the rest of us would go on a routine family-trip (I suspect it's the same deal that you're recalling). But I never went anywhere without my parents like that . . . a very different world of comfort for me I guess.

The idea, though, of taking a trip without the kids barring my discomfort and the issues that would likely arise - sounds spectacular. I went camping without them once, a looong time ago, it was semi-nice.
 

RightinNYC

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Whenever I think back to what I was like as a kid, I'm astonished my parents took me anywhere.
 

Catz Part Deux

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((I would really like it if there was a proper debate forum for familiy and child-care issues instead of sticking these issues in with off-topic discussion in lieu of a debate forum . . . but there isn't.))

So - What are your thoughts on parents who don't take their children on vacations or trips out of town? (Example: mother/father plan a trip to Seattle for a week. They leave their children, ages 3 and 5, with Grandma for the week)

Is it selfish?

Is it neglectful?

Does the child's age make this practice more or less acceptable?

Does the situation or reason for the trip make this more / less acceptable (example - visiting a sick relative, planning an anniversary trip, or traveling for leisure)?
When I was a child, my parents went on many trips to pretty great places: Acapulco, Cancun, Hawaii, Europe several times, the UK. They left us at home with my grandparents. I never felt neglected at that age. My grandparents totally spoiled us and loved having us.
 
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Harry Guerrilla

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((I would really like it if there was a proper debate forum for familiy and child-care issues instead of sticking these issues in with off-topic discussion in lieu of a debate forum . . . but there isn't.))

So - What are your thoughts on parents who don't take their children on vacations or trips out of town? (Example: mother/father plan a trip to Seattle for a week. They leave their children, ages 3 and 5, with Grandma for the week)

Is it selfish?

Is it neglectful?

Does the child's age make this practice more or less acceptable?

Does the situation or reason for the trip make this more / less acceptable (example - visiting a sick relative, planning an anniversary trip, or traveling for leisure)?
I know you have kids, do those guys not drive you insane sometimes?

I haven't taken a vacation since I was a child but I would love to take a "wife and me only trip" soon.
 

molten_dragon

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I think it's fine with a couple of caveats.

Parents shouldn't be taking all their vacations alone. Never taking your kids on vacation with you is crappy parenting.

The kid(s) should be old enough that they are fairly self-sufficient when it comes to physical needs (i.e. they're weaned, potty trained, etc.). Leaving a 1-year old alone with grandma and grandpa for a week is not good parenting either.
 

Aunt Spiker

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UGH! I can see why parents might not want to take an infant or toddler along, though - I've done that.

Years back when my husband was deployed I visited him in Ft Hood - the kids were 7months, 2, 6, 8 . . . A 6 hr drive morphed to a 14 hr drive - it was a nightmare, i was exhausted and actually had to pull over and take a nap. It was a miracle we arrived in one peace.

I didn't travel anywhere for a while after that - it was just too difficult when they were so young. Now that they're older it's easier, they actually enjoy driving and seeing new things. I was afraid when we sped off to California a few months ago that they'd be bored to death the entire time- that's a long trip to take - but they were so excited to see mountains, the desert, all the sites (Grand Canyon and Vegas). It was thoroughly enjoyable because they really got a lot out of it.

When I was a kid, though, we took trips like that all the time - a few times a year - it's great to see things the first or second time . . . but third, fourth, fifth? After a while it becomes sucky routine.

I know you have kids, do those guys not drive you insane sometimes?

I haven't taken a vacation since I was a child but I would love to take a "wife and me only trip" soon.
:rofl Not really! Trips with the kids is fun.
 
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Psychoclown

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I have to agree with the concensus here. It's bad parenting to NEVER take your kids on a vacation. Kids need to experience new things - locations, cultures, food. Plus, vacations are fun and a great time for family bonding and building memories that will literally last a lifetime.

But on the flip side, its bad for a couple to NEVER take a little time for themselves. Kids are great, wonderful gifts from God, but they can be a real pain in the ass too. There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking a little time for yourselves to reconnect as a couple without the kids screaming at each other or running around in the background. Some couples may not be able to arrange child care for a week (but often where there is a will there is a way), but certainly you can make arrangements for an overnight or a long weekend occassionally. I never understood parents who can't be away from their kids for one second. Its insane with some people. Many many couples in my church refuse to use the nursery service and bring their infants and toddlers into church. Fortunately, most of them are at least considerate enough to take the children out of the room when they begin to cry or act up, but some are too ignorant to even do that. Heck I know a few couples that won't even get a baby sitter if they are invited over to another couples' house for dinner, they just bring the kids along with. If you can't leave your children at home for ONE NIGHT, you have some issues. And frankly, you're not doing your kids any favors either.

Its just like dating or freshly married couples who can never stand to seperated from each other. Ugh. I love my wife more than anything in the world, but if I had to be constantly joined at the hip with her I'd go crazy (and so would she!). I have friends, interests, and hobbies outside of my wife. I don't need her to be around when I go play a few pick up games of basketball, or play poker with the guys, or nerd it up with some other friends and play an intense game of Risk till dawn. Just like she doesn't need me around when she goes to those boring ladies parties where one woman is trying to sell useless crap to other women (my wife loves these parties) or when her and a frined or two get together and decide to have a chick flick festival.
 

StandUpChuck

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Parents = the most judged group of people on the planet. I guess I don't see how it's any of anyone's business to assume anything about someone's parenting whether or not they take their kids on vacation with them.

Kids showing up at school hungry with dirty faces and dirty clothes = neglectful parenting

Kids running around a city area with no shoes and hopping over passed out drunks = neglectful parenting

Kids going or not going on vacation with their parents? Who cares? :shrug: To each his own in this regard.


(I agree that a parenting debate section would be a good idea).
 

Goshin

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When I was growing up, my parents took me with them on many vacations. We went to a lot of intresting places, and did lots of intresting things... it was awesome. They did take an occasional vacation without me, and that's fine too. Every couple needs some time to themselves.

I'm a single parent, so my situation is slightly different. I wanted my son to have some of those same kinds of awesome experiences, so I've tried to make that happen as often as I can... building memories of things we did together that will stay with him for life. It has been a great thing. Especially the last couple of years, he's 14 now and he's actually good company and a very agreeable travelling companion.

Once in a while though, I will take a weekend by myself. Typically I'll go off to a certain state forest in the mountains, park offroad, hike up to one of my favorite isolated spots, and camp out overnight. Camping alone in an isolated site in the woods is very solemn, but very quiet and restful. It helps me recharge my soul to face the daily trials of life again.

G.
 

lizzie

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I think it's a good idea to do both. Take the kids on SOME vacations when they are old enough that they will have memories of it. Also, leave the kids with grandma every once in awhile and take a vacation with the spouse.
When I was a kid, we always went on a summer vacation. Often, it was nothing more than the whole family visiting with my grandparents for a week, or camping out in tents at a near-by lake, because my dad didn't make much money, and we couldn't afford anything else. It was a great time anyway- get away from home, break the routine, get a new outlook.
 

Kali

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To All Parents: Take Your Kids On Vacations! You had em so you better take their little mean, annoying ass with ya!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :2razz:

Not to say that there should be no Adult Get Aways... Parent Machines: Take a trip each year alone..

And a Monthly Trip to a local Hotel every Month!!
 
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