Can I MAKE my 14 year old dd go to summer camp if she doesn't want to?

(168 Posts)
Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 18:33:32

Here's the background.
DH is going away for seven and a half weeks in the summer holidays. shock
I work mon-fri, 5am until 12pm.
I have four children aged 8, 11, 13 and 14.

I'll need a break. So I've booked a holiday camp for the kids which looks really great. They'd all go to the same camp for one week.

The problem is that my 14 year old DD says she won't go. She's insisting. She points out, quite correctly, that I can't drag her out of the house.

She's very shy. Actually I know this would be great for her and I think it's just what she needs: A week doing kayaking, canoeing, zip wiring, crafts, archery, camping etc etc etc. It would be a great chance for her to leave the lip gloss and straighteners at home and just BE!

But she won't. And I've paid the deposit.

Having a week to myself is the only thing that's keeping me going and I won't cope without it.

What would you do?

HDEE Tue 04-Jun-13 18:38:37

I'd let her stay home. It sounds like a week of hell to me so I'd never force my child to do it either.

And of course you will cope without a week to yourself, what a daft thing to say.

usualsuspect Tue 04-Jun-13 18:39:29

I wouldn't force her to go.

I would have hated that kind of holiday at 14

Merrylegs Tue 04-Jun-13 18:40:04

Bribe her. With cash. Is what I'd do.

I made DS go on a summer camp after his GCSEs, despite the fact he absolutely didn't want to.

To his credit he gave it a go but he hated every minute of it and didn't forgive me for a very long time.

We laugh about it now though...

DeepRedBetty Tue 04-Jun-13 18:42:58

Mine would love this. BUT they are twins and would be together. Any faint chance of sending a friend of hers too? It's possible the parents of one of her school mates are desperate to offload their daughter for the same week!

DeepRedBetty Tue 04-Jun-13 18:44:45

So which of your two identical threads are you going to focus on.... grin

waikikamookau Tue 04-Jun-13 18:45:24

can't she be persuaded.
particularly as you have already paid.
can't you encourage her that she will be in charge of her siblings?

EliotNess Tue 04-Jun-13 18:46:02

its a funny old age isnt it? I dont think many 14 yos I know would like to do it. Maybe take a mate?

alarkaspree Tue 04-Jun-13 18:46:16

Do you think she will enjoy it once she gives it a go, or not? It sounds great to me but it also sounds like the kind of thing that parents think their children ought to enjoy.

Where is it? Would it be at all possible for you to say that she has to try it for 3 days and if after that she really hates it you will pick her up?

And make it clear that if she doesn't go she has to do all her own laundry, cleaning and cooking for the week.

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 18:51:28

I had wondered about seeing if her friend would fancy going but I'm not sure they'd cough up to be honest. It's a lot of money. BTW there's only one friend she would go with.

I really do think she'd enjoy it. She loved gorge walking in Wales and really seemed to relax and shed the teenage angst. She did rock climbing, sip wiring and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Now she mooches around pouting and trying different lip glosses.

HDEE it's not 'a daft thing to say' at all. I will be alone, working 5am til 12pm, then coming home to do all the laundry, cooking, parenting and trying to fit in enough sleep .... for seven and a half weeks. It's a looming nightmare but we can't afford for DH not to take the work.

mamas12 Tue 04-Jun-13 18:51:43

Lay it on the line and say you've paid the deposit so she has to go and you need the break.
Of she is adamant then
1. give her a list of chores that she will be expected to do on her week at home alone whole you're in
2. Go and stay with another family member

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 18:52:24

Deepred I just noticed there are two threads. Grrr! I only pressed it once I promise. Damn computer. I'll stick to this thread.

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 18:53:45

mamas12 she could go and stay with my mum in Dorset if it comes to it. I just wish I could persuade her because I think she'd love it.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Tue 04-Jun-13 18:56:04

i agree with bribery, would that work?

pollycazalet Tue 04-Jun-13 18:59:22

I don't think you can force her. A week is a long time away from home and not enjoying yourself. Would it be that bad if she stayed? My 13 year old son is pretty independent and I can imagine being home alone with him would be ok as he'd be out and about a lot of the time. Do you think she craves a bit of time alone with you too? Have you any family she could go to for a couple of days? Agree that if she is at home she needs to help out, but she might really love being a flat mate with you!

Blu Tue 04-Jun-13 19:04:54

Is it the fact that she will be with all the younger ones that is partly putting her off?

I know you have paid the deposit, but I wonder if there is another camp she can transfer to that avoids losing her newly attained adult sohistication (sic) in front of her siblings?

I think if you are working all hol it will do them good to have a week off doing something different anyway, and I fully sympathise with your need to send them away!

mamas12 Tue 04-Jun-13 19:05:18

Well I think you'll have to try and talk to her 'adult to adult' so to speak and get her to think she's doing you a massive favour and she's is charge at the holiday vp and also try and think of some reward or something for after she comes back good luck hope she goes

pollycazalet Tue 04-Jun-13 19:09:15

I'm not sure how easy it is at this age to 'just be' especially if you're shy. I think it's extremely stressful for some kids to have to mix and mingle - you're permanently 'on' with a group of people you don't really know. Plus being the oldest one with three younger siblings to feel responsible for.

MortifiedAdams Tue 04-Jun-13 19:12:20

You could drag her out of the house. Tbh a 14yo is incapable of staying home alone (as in, if you went away yourself).

jessjessjess Tue 04-Jun-13 19:16:20

I went to something like this at her age. I was shy and awkward. I hated it. Absolutely hated it.

She's a teenager, can't she stay in the house alone during the day or get a job or something?

Blu Tue 04-Jun-13 19:17:59

Send her on tour with her father for the week?

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 19:19:54

He's in Japan Blu so she'd have to go with him for the full seven and a half weeks which I'm not sure either of them would appreciate.

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 19:20:40

Aitch I too am a fan of the bribe but she's remarkably resilient to such tactics. She reminds me more and more of Saffy in Ab Fab.

SgtTJCalhoun Tue 04-Jun-13 19:20:53

I was made to go to Guide camp at 12 and I still remember now how much I hated it. My parents came half way through for a visit but wouldn't take me home because they said I should "stick it out". I can still clearly remember how lonely and sad I was.

At 14 she surely doesn't need that much doing for her does she? You'll still get your break.

wigglybeezer Tue 04-Jun-13 19:22:43

My 14 year always says he is not going to do things, very forcibly, but if I don't engage and just carry calmly on as if he has no choice he usually surrenders at the very last minute ( he is also shy bu often enjoys things when he gets there).
Alternatively get her to do housework and Laundry as a condition of staying at home.

DystopianReality Tue 04-Jun-13 19:23:38

Oh, I feel so much for both you and she...

I think, on balance, could she just stay at home and do her own thing, while you do yours? You might even find a common ground without the others where you have some fun.
She could, just be left alone in the evenings too, so maybe she won't be too intrusive?
I woule try to be kind and tolerant and have her at home.

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 19:25:33

Really jessjessjess? I worry that she's so shy. It's preventing her from doing so many things. Did you get over your shyness? Or are you still afflicted? Is there anything I can do to help her with this?

Blu (nice to 'see' you btw) I don't think she's worried about being with younger children particularly because she'll be put in a group with people her own age. This particular place is renowned for its pastoral care. I booked it for her with that in mind. Had I known she'd refuse I might have saved myself £150 per child and booked a place which doesn't have locally sourced organic food and great pastoral care. My boys would have been perfectly happy with the basics.

SgtTJCalhoun Tue 04-Jun-13 19:29:30

Did you not check with her before you booked it?

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 19:30:00

SgtTJ she doesn't need stuff doing for her but I can't tell you how much I crave my own company just now and again. It's so full on with the four of them and I need to have a period of refueling.

She's quite hard going sometimes. Surly and rude. Doesn't clear up after herself. Normal teenage behaviour, but I need a break from it otherwise I might go properly mad.

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 19:31:24

SgtTJ No I didn't check with her. I did lots of research, found a place I thought looked great and booked it feeling pleased that at least with the money dh is earning whilst away all that time I could give something to the kids and to me.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Tue 04-Jun-13 19:31:59

God I think you're being very selfish. "I need a break" well so does she and at 14 this kind of thing will worry a shy girl massively! She's not 4! Let her be. She can manage alone for a few hours while you're at work.

DystopianReality Tue 04-Jun-13 19:32:43

I worry about the 'it didn't do me any harm'. It's a bit like smacking isn't it? Get firm and send 'erm out! It's charcater forming..... and all of that.
Sometimes, it isn't, it does just the opposite, it can kill confidence.
Keep her where she feels confident at a time when she needs to feel that more than ever and also needs you to recognise her needs too.

I realise you need a life too, god knows, it sounds like it. I really sympathise, there may be middle ground; have you thought it through thoroughly?

beachyhead Tue 04-Jun-13 19:36:33

It probably depends on the age bracket that she will be with. My dd1 and ds1 went to camp last year, but she was in a small group of teenagers (she was 15) doing way more adult stuff than my DS, who was 11....

Perhaps contact the centre and see how big the group is, how many boys v girls, the actual timetable for the teens and see if any of that looks appealing to her.

I would also approach her friends parents and see if their dd is interested - you never know till you ask...

What are all the kids doing for the remaining six weeks then?

Chubfuddler Tue 04-Jun-13 19:37:01

If its her crippling shyness that's the problem, I'll offer this perspective: my SIL is quite gung ho about effectively forcing her quite shy son to do things because she recognises that he is like she was, and that loads of opportunities passed her by. She was too shy to put herself forward for things and was never made to participate. So she did nothing: didn't join guides, didn't go on the French exchange, didn't do sleep overs. She regrets it now.

Plus when it comes down to it, 14 is a child and she goes if you say she goes.

queenofthepirates Tue 04-Jun-13 19:38:38

Christ on a bike, I don't think the OP is being in the least bit selfish. Parents need to see their own limits and not go over them otherwise they turn into harridans and no one wins.

Personally I have no clue how you cope with four kids, I can barely manage one.

My hat off to you for not having taken them all to Barnados

DystopianReality Tue 04-Jun-13 19:39:34

Forcing a 'shy person' into extrovert situations is not going to 'cure' her of her shyness.

Being listened to and having time allocated to just her is more likely to build her confidence.

jessjessjess Tue 04-Jun-13 19:40:00

"Really jessjessjess? I worry that she's so shy. It's preventing her from doing so many things. Did you get over your shyness? Or are you still afflicted? Is there anything I can do to help her with this?"

You're not going to like the answer. But - despite the fact she's a rude, difficult teenager - feeling unwanted by you isn't actually going to help. In my experience, a shy kid who goes to summer camp will just turn into a shy kid at summer camp.

She will get over her shyness, but I don't think getting her out of the way like this is going to help. I realise you want a break, but there must be a middle ground like Dystopian says.

DeafLeopard Tue 04-Jun-13 19:40:14

God no don't force her, it sounds absolutely awful for a shy 14 year old.

But she is old enough to

- entertain herself while you are at work
- do some chores to help you out
- do something productive with the week

HeathRobinson Tue 04-Jun-13 19:44:52

'I could give something to the kids...' Really?

Catbert4pm Tue 04-Jun-13 19:48:48

Tricky. When I worked FT I asked 13yo DD how she would feel about a week at PGL and I was v glad when she agreed. I cried when we dropped her off - I felt like I was putting her in a children's home for a week, but she loved it. She came home with a new
-found love of dub step (I think that's what it's called!) and smelling like a right old swamp duck!!

I think only you know whether to play hardball on this one; you know her best. I don't think you are being selfish for considering making it mandatory, but clearly persuasion would be the better option, if that is practical given her age wink

I think there are some good suggestions here; I particularly like the try it for three days or stay with family possibilities.

Good luck, I hope things work out well - keep us posted!

GraduallyGoingInsane Tue 04-Jun-13 19:49:28

Can you leave it and then bring it up on a couple of weeks? I have 4 DDs and their moods change by the hour. What they hate now might not be so bad in a couple of weeks.

I do sympathise though, I have a shy DD2 and although she will give things a go now I know sometimes its an enormous effort and she'd rather hide. Can you promise her something she'd like for another part of the holidays? She could stay in bed and read for a whole weekend afterwards, or something similar?

I do think though it helps to keep pushing the comfort zone - not in a 'it never did me any harm' sense, but life has so many opportunities - travel, university etc that are great, but scary. A few smaller 'scaries' that you force yourself to do and end up enjoying can pave the path for bigger scary things.

Dededum Tue 04-Jun-13 19:49:55

I think it's the friends thing - I am assuming this is a residential thing.

My boys 10&11 are going to do a week play scheme (for 10-16yr olds). But they both need a friend to do it.

Don't think being shy and having to cope is a bad thing. You can't stop her being shy but she needs to learn to get on with things. You do her no favours by shielding her from the world. I was / am a mix of shy and bolshie, learnt to deal with it and in my 20's travelled across Africa.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 04-Jun-13 19:51:42

God I think you're being very selfish. "I need a break" well so does she and at 14 this kind of thing will worry a shy girl massively! She's not 4! Let her be. She can manage alone for a few hours while you're at work.

^^ This.

I can't believe you booked a summer camp knowing she is so shy and sprung it on her. shock

DystopianReality Tue 04-Jun-13 19:52:39

Just a thought...

Don't look back on a decision to send her 'anyway', and in a few years regret that decision. Don't think, a few years time, 'I wish I hadn't forced her', in view of what might or might not happen.

Be proud that you listened and actedin HER best interests, as she will mature and you will inevitably think about the decsions you took and whether they had an impact on her.

When they are tiny we feed them all the besr stuff and 'entertain and 'calm and their needs are our needs too. Make that an edict for their adolescence too, maybe.

BTW I drink too much and am frequently horrible and irritable with both DH and DCs

pollycazalet Tue 04-Jun-13 19:55:43

World of difference between a play scheme and a weeks residential. Of course she's still a child at 14 but you need to listen to why she doesn't want to go and model negotiation and compromise. There seem to be other options. I don't think you are being selfish either but your dd is telling you something important about your assumptions about what's best for her and what she will enjoy.

motherinferior Tue 04-Jun-13 19:55:45

The very idea of four kids for seven and a half weeks is making me feel faint so although in theory I sympathise with her, in practice I am wondering about a really big bribe...

Spidermama Tue 04-Jun-13 19:56:28

jessjessjess I am with her all the time. I am often home alone with her and we do stuff together. I don't think she's starved of my company. On the contrary she often actively shuts me out, which is normal and healthy for a 14 year old.

Beachyhead I think it's a good idea to contact the center and get their take on it. I'll leave the subject for a week or so, then make another attempt next time we're getting on well. If she still refuses I'll reluctantly cancel her place. She'll have to go to her Grandmother's in Dorset for the week though because I really need that week.

3monkeys Tue 04-Jun-13 19:59:42

Could she go to a different week's activity? As a teenager I would have bee terrified by that camp! But my kids would love it. Is there something local she could do?

willowisp Tue 04-Jun-13 20:06:07

What about getting an aupair in instead & sending all the kids to a local day camp ?

I sympathise with you both...assume no grandparents around to help ?

Startail Tue 04-Jun-13 20:16:04

I'm afraid I am a heartless parent, it's paid for, your going, end of discussion.

DD1(15) would love it, except for the other teens, who she'd ignore.

DD2(12) would also be fine as she's used to doing a day camp with people she doesn't know and always makes friends.

DD2 has been practicing teen awkwardness since she was 6, hence the it's paid for your going line. No way does DD2 get to call the shots, now or until she's 18 (because actually, she wouldn't want to).

Tubemole1 Tue 04-Jun-13 20:24:38

No you can't make her go.

When I was 14 the thought of a camp would have sounded lame.

Is there a best friend or favourite relative she can stay with instead? Or perhaps tag along to a mate's holiday instead?

VenusUprising Tue 04-Jun-13 22:15:03

Just send her.

I don't think it's selfish to ensure she has skills for adulthood.

Being shy is no excuse for being a recluse.

She's 14 and needs to know the world doesn't shine out of her bum, shy or not.

Her mum is working her socks off and needs time for herself, and I can relieve how much flack she's getting..

Fwiw, I was sent on all sorts of camps, and loved some, and hated others.

You learn to roll with it and suck it up.

Life's not especially designed for your own pleasure, sometimes to be part of a family, you need to accommodate other family members and do what's expected.
It's only a week, but her mum needs the time alone, as she'll be a sole parent for the duration of the summer.

twoteens Tue 04-Jun-13 23:15:17

Bloody hell the op in not sending her away to boarding school for a year!!!!!
i would explain that its going to be a long long summer if she doesn't go and bribery always helps new straightners if she goes, and she might have a great time. my two went to camp at this age dd1 very reluctant but had a fantastic time still friends with people she met there and she was very shy. and how bad can it be for a week part of growing up is realizing that sometimes you have to adapt and do things that you dont want too, And you need and deserve the break it was my life line in the summer when the girls went to camp just to have some me time. the rest of the holidays went better because I had that break.

alarkaspree Tue 04-Jun-13 23:42:55

My mother made me and my sister go to that kind of camp at a similar age because she had to work. Neither of us were very keen, we were both quite shy.

I loved it, it really brought me out of my shell, I got to snog boys and stuff.

My sister hated it and was really miserable.

So it could go either way. I don't think you would be wrong to insist on her going at all, it could work out just as you hope. Equally it could not, but it's not unreasonable to expect her to try it out.

Startail Wed 05-Jun-13 00:25:52

The more I think about this the more I feel a 14year old gets no choice, but a 10 year old does.

A 10 yearold might be genuinely scared and home sick. I hated my first guide holiday.

A 14 yearold needs to get their act together and learn to face whatever the world throws at them.

colditz Wed 05-Jun-13 00:31:52

I wouldn't have gone, and if I'd been dragged there I'd have walked out at the first opportunity and hitch hiked home.

OutragedFromLeeds Wed 05-Jun-13 01:06:23

So a chronically shy 14 year old needs to learn to suck it up, roll with it, get their act together and learn to face whatever the world throws at them, but her mother is perfectly entitled to pack her off to a camp because the idea of looking after her own children for 7 weeks is too much for her?! Doesn't she need to suck it up?

OP I understand you need a bit of time, but wouldn't it be easier to organise lots of day activities if she doesn't want to go away for a whole week? I think a couple of days a week, every week of alone time is probably going to make the 7 weeks easier than 6 weeks of having them full time and 1 week of them being away.

mirry2 Wed 05-Jun-13 01:13:49

Why not do a deal with her by saying that she should do 2 days and if she still really doesn't like it she can come home on the third day. Then at least she will have given it a go and mabe even like it and if not, at least you'll know she tried and that you had 2 days of rest.

CouthyMow Wed 05-Jun-13 02:09:35

If give her the choice - week at camp, or week with Granny in Dorset. Anything other than those two options is NOT an option!

You need that time, you know your limits, she is 14, so old enough to realise that she will be at home where her friends are god the other 6 out of 7 weeks, but that you WILL be getting this week as R&R.

Give her a deadline to choose by, but let her make the choice. Staying at home that week, not an option.

nooka Wed 05-Jun-13 02:22:57

My ds is 14 and if that is what I had organised (with his needs in mind), that's what would happen. For us finding stuff for ds this summer has been tricky as round our way most camps etc seem to cut off at 13.

Spidermama how do you work such crazy hours? There is no way I could cope with that long term (or am I misreading and seeing 12pm as midnight when perhaps you mean midday?)

The option of granny or camp seems like a good compromise.

fastyspeedyfast Wed 05-Jun-13 02:34:00

OP is not sending her to prison camp, and it's only for a week. I can understand the 14-year-old over-dramatising this... but what's with all the adults reacting as though the OP was packing her off to Siberia?

If she would honestly enjoy a week with Granny instead, so be it. But fair enough to have a week to yourself while they the others zip & hike & swim. Sounds fun.

OP I understand you need a bit of time, but wouldn't it be easier to organise lots of day activities if she doesn't want to go away for a whole week? No, that sounds much more complex!! And it involves far more organising and chauffeuring.

TanteRose Wed 05-Jun-13 04:03:00

oh, OP, I feel your pain.

I had organised for my DS (14) to go to an English/activity camp (English is his second language and could do with a boost) in the UK near my parents.

He was due to go over to the UK, stay with his grandparents for a few days, do the residential camp and then return with me (I would be visiting the UK part-way through the summer).

He suddenly decided that it was completely LAME and out of the question and there was no way I would make him go <sigh>.

I had paid the deposit, but had not yet paid for the airline ticket to the UK. He was supposed to be flying alone (what an adventure, thought I <hollow laugh>) but there was a very good chance he would just refuse to board the plane. I was not going to risk wasting a lot of money.

So he is not going - he said he has "things to do" (there are some gigs, and DJing competitions that he is entering, so he won't be in his room the WHOLE summer just most of it confused)

His sister and I are going to the UK for a visit anyway, he will stay here with DH (who works partly from home) so its not a disaster, but its just so disheartening...

Funnily enough, we are in Japan so if your DD had been a boy, I would have suggested they come over with your DH and do a homestay at mine! It would have been a "room" stay, heavily featuring computer/Xbox...


EugenesAxe Wed 05-Jun-13 04:22:34

I went on a few things like that around that age and loved them - but I was with my best friend. I've read most but my initial thought was also see how she goes for a few days -then say if she doesn't like she can go to grandma's.

I also think an honest chat/ discussion about your feelings as well as hers might work.

I don't think you are AT ALL out of order for needing that week. I am slightly depressed about your mention of sleep, because I'd hoped that nighttime pissing about would end by about age 5. When they both sleep right through I realise how amazing it is to not be disturbed...

EugenesAxe Wed 05-Jun-13 04:32:57

Also DH is reserved more than shy and he says he resents his DM not pushing him to try more unknown experiences.

Different background, in that he says she struggled to let go, so would take him back home/ keep him with her at the first sign of discomfort/ 'I don't want to go'-ness on his part, but still pertinent. He says it's negatively affected him as an adult.

Blu Wed 05-Jun-13 08:09:19

Ha ha at OP being selfish for needing a break and 'do does she'. The OP is doing a FULL TIME job, starting at 5am every day and looking after 4 kids in the summer hols. The dd will have a 6 week school hol as her break.

14 year olds need saving from themselves sometimes. Leave it a bit and offer camp OR Dorset but staying at home is non negotiable.

Or check out other residentials she might like

ssd Wed 05-Jun-13 08:19:26

I dont have enough cash to bribe my 2 into doing camps during the summer holidays, its their idea of hell

but I do get the fact you need a bit of a break, totally feel for you there

but surely at 14 she can stay in herself and try to keep out your way when you come home after lunchtime

GoblinGranny Wed 05-Jun-13 08:23:01

I like the fact that you have three options though:
Send her to camp and deal with the consequences. At least if she's shy and insecure, she's unlikely to just walk out and disappear.
Send her to her grandmother for a week.
Let her stay, but at 14 she can hoover and clean bathrooms and kitchen, make basic meals, load up the washing machine and dry the clothes, gardening...and I'd have all of my children doing age-appropriate jobs every week anyway.

I am puzzled though, you work 5-12, 5 days a week. Is she in charge of the rest of them when you work?

pollycazalet Wed 05-Jun-13 08:24:03

Fair enough if 14 year old had been consulted and agreed to the plan and is now backing out. But OP has said she booked it without asking and its for her own convenience - its clear her dd doesn't see it as a treat or a great opprtunity. I am amazed at how many people think the dd should be made to do this when there appear to be other options. A lot of heavy handed approaches on this thread which ime teens do not respond to, and which can damage relationships.

cory Wed 05-Jun-13 08:37:08

Your initial mistake was making a decision that involved a child this old and not having her included in the discussions. This means you have missed out on the first chance of compromising and making her feel part of the decision. You wouldn't like it if your dh had decided that he was tired and needed to be alone at home so had booked up a holiday for you behind your back. Not even if he was unwell or had other massive reasons for needing to be alone.

Sometimes, of course, parents have to make executive decisions. But teenagers should at least be involved in the discussions.

Still, there may be time to compromise. But you need to come from an angle where you tell her that you recognise the problem from her pov (and get her to recognise the problem from your pov). Is there anything you could do to make her stay at the camp more bearable for her? Or is there anything she could do to make her staying at home more bearable for you.

You need to start practising talking to her like a grown up. Of course she is not a grown up and you don't need to give her vote the same weight as that of a grown up, but you do need to get into that habit of relating to each other.

cory Wed 05-Jun-13 08:39:49

I was also a very shy teenager and have had a fair bit of experience pushing anxious teens to try the unknown. Ime it only ever works if you work with them rather than over their heads.

VivaLeBeaver Wed 05-Jun-13 08:42:30

I've tried to convice my 12yo dd to go to PGL for a week but she's not having it. Therefore she won't be going. You really can't force her. You'll surely still have a break with the other kids gone? It could be really nice for the two of you to have some one-on-one time???

livinginwonderland Wed 05-Jun-13 09:20:03

My parents used to try and force me to do these things and I absolutely hated it. At thirteen my mum tried to book the usual camp (for the whole summer - gah!) and I flat-out refused to go and thankfully my dad agreed that I didn't have to go if I didn't want to. It was the first summer I really enjoyed in ages.

These camps are the kind of things parents want their kids to do, but most kids absolutely hate them. If she doesn't want to go, please don't make her. She's 14 and perfectly capable of entertaining herself for a week.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 09:44:59

gawd, spidey. reading a lot of these responses makes me think you should definitely make her go, tbh. when did fourteen year olds get so indulged? do agree, though, that a pal to go with would be good.
my own experience is of being veeeery reluctant to go on a camp when i was 16, but my mum told me to stop moaning and get on with it. totally out of my comfort zone, all new things... absolutely loved it and made friends that i still have today.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 09:45:48

(and also scored a nice boyfriend)

Callofthefishwife Wed 05-Jun-13 09:53:45

I can sympathise. My 14yo DD does little but hog the sofa. I cannot get her budge. She would refuse something like this but if it was booked she would be going end of.

She will probably enjoy it - but dont expect her to actually let on to you that she did.

renaldo Wed 05-Jun-13 09:54:06

I wish my mum had pushed me to do more as a teen, I missed out on a lot as I always said no as I was lazy. Send her, appeal to her better nature and offer a small bribe

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 10:00:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 10:02:20

I'd be inclined to negotiate with her & give her a choice of going to camp or: staying with granny, a week of extra maths tuition, hard manual labour (eg cleaning/painting etc) at home.

I tend to do that quite a bit with mine - offer them one slightly less palatable option over a really awful option & lo & behold they go for the first option!

What I wouldn't do, is let her stay at home for a week with the lip gloss & straighteners!

ChewingOnLifesGristle Wed 05-Jun-13 10:03:48

I understand you feel you need a break but how could you enjoy any break knowing that she'll be there feeling unhappy?sad

She's sounds a quiet sort of person. She's said thanks but no thanks and still you went ahead and paid the depositconfused

Pushing her to do something that's totally not her thing because it's convenient to you but dressed up as 'doing her good'. Awful.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 10:04:18

do you REALLY think you were old enough to know your own mind at 14?
i was a total idiot at that age, and for a good few years beyond. talked a good game, of course, but i look back and know that so much of my reluctance to do things was just fear of failure.

My DD (13) would probably refuse to go on something like this, but if it was a week's riding holiday she would be there like a shot. Is there something she would prefer?

ChewingOnLifesGristle Wed 05-Jun-13 10:11:43

'do you REALLY think you were old enough to know your own mind at 14?'

Yes, I knew.

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 10:15:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 10:20:37

I knew my own mind at 14 - but what I knew wasn't necessarily the best thing for me.

Going off to camp for 5 days is not like being sold into slavery or going into service (turn back the clock 100 yrs) or anything really, really awful. I'm sure if Spidermama's daughter goes & utterly hates it, Spidermama would probably not force her to go thereafter - but if she never tries it, she is losing out the opportunity to possibly have lots of fun.

My parents started to send me to camps or the UK to learn English when I was 13. Did I feel unloved? God, no!
Do you need to learn how t force yourself into a new/different environment? Yes.

In my limited experiences the fun much outweighed the angst of meeting new people.

And she is 14, it's one week out of 7 weeks of holidays. She does what her mother deems better for the whole family.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 10:22:01

you would NEVER have forgiven her? i mean really... that even sounds adolescent... grin

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 10:40:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

motherinferior Wed 05-Jun-13 10:41:35

Well, the fact is that the OP needs one precious week off. So it's about how to negotiate that.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 10:43:34

that, and as a mother she feels that it would greatly benefit her daughter to be shaken out of her comfort zone... i don't think it's reasonable to discount that, tbh.

motherinferior Wed 05-Jun-13 10:45:44

Yes, I have to say I have forced my admittedly younger DD2 into stuff (mainly musical activities) about which she wept...and which is now something she absolutely loves doing.

ChewingOnLifesGristle Wed 05-Jun-13 10:45:59

Maybe she would be more enthused if a friend went too.

But tbh if you want her to just 'BE' then allow that, not another's version of what she should be.

This is being dressed up as what's good for her, when really it's about shipping her out for the week regardless of her feelings on the matter because its convenient.

Still<sigh> we live in a world geared around extroverts and by gum they're all out to 'cure' the rest of us at any cost, because of course being 'shy' is an affliction after allhmm.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 10:48:43

yes, i imagine spidermama doesn't like her child one bit and would prefer her to be totally different, that's probably it. i also imagine she barely knows her at all, or what's best for her. <also breaks out naff hmm face>

Chubfuddler Wed 05-Jun-13 10:53:47

All the shy/introverted people I know hate it and wish they weren't.

We have all noticed that said 14 year old has a 13 year old sibling who will be going too? I mean it's a summer camp not a gulag. They can snog boys and generally arse around.

motherinferior Wed 05-Jun-13 10:56:10

I too think if you're so shy you find engaging with other people a major problem then that is a bit of an affliction, yes.

Snogging and arsing around sounds terrific. Wish I could have a week of it, frankly.

Branleuse Wed 05-Jun-13 10:57:58

bribe her

PearlyWhites Wed 05-Jun-13 10:59:13

I have a 14 year old dd and had a similar issue last summer. I wanted her to go to the camp her youth club were going too, but she was too shy as non of her friends from the club were going so I didn't make her. I wanted her to go not for childcare reasons but because I thought she would have had a great time once she was there.
If I were you (as a mum of four dc myself ) I would relish the opportunity to have some one to one time with your dd.

ChewingOnLifesGristle Wed 05-Jun-13 11:02:04

Shy and introverted aren't necessarily the same thing but it's often lumped together. And I've never found it to be a hindrance.

Well only when fending off the well intentioned (maybe) attempts of extroverts who simply won't accept we're not all longing to be like them.

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 11:02:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 11:02:47

grin at MI!!!!! Me too - specially the snogging bit. Ages since I had a really good snog.

imaginethat Wed 05-Jun-13 11:03:35

What about if you start now by ordering them to do boot camp at 5am, then cleaning, no screens ever etc. then summer camp will seem like something to look forward to.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 11:04:00

Tsk, tsk Jima - those expeditions are supposed to be unsupervised to qualify for a DofE Award! wink

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 11:09:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Cerisier Wed 05-Jun-13 11:09:49

I have a 14YO too and she certainly knows her own mind. We discuss holidays a great deal so that everyone gets to do things they want even if it means splitting up sometimes. We find it works well for us.

I think you need to discuss the options with DD and DH. Could she stay at home with you for the week so you can spend a couple of afternoons out together? Plus she can help with the chores in the mornings.

Then could she fly to join her DF for two weeks at some point in the holiday? Would she be happy to entertain herself a bit while he was at work- she could then have a special adventure with DF.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 11:17:20

"All expeditions must be unaccompanied and self-sufficient" - point no2 of the 20 conditions of meeting a DofE Expedition.

So, yes I do think that 14 year olds are sent out alone on expeditions (although it doesn't have to be the wilds of Dartmoor). wink

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 11:22:18

but just to bring this back to the actual OP for a second, rather than people's own traumatic experiences at the hands of 'well intentioned (maybe)' extroverts... the child did have a great time at similar activities before. According to Spidey...
"I really do think she'd enjoy it. She loved gorge walking in Wales and really seemed to relax and shed the teenage angst. She did rock climbing, sip wiring and thoroughly enjoyed it.
Now she mooches around pouting and trying different lip glosses."

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 11:23:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 11:25:34

gosh jimalfie... maybe your mother should have taught her teenager better manners back when she was letting you do whatever you wanted. shock wink

motherinferior Wed 05-Jun-13 11:28:27

Actually, Spidermama, I think quite seriously you should get your DH and your DD1 to sort this out between them.

I've just realised just how much of my time goes on sorting out holiday cover, and it looks like yours is too, and Life Is Too Short. Lock them in a room together and tell them they can come out when they've worked out something that suits everyone.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 11:29:37

grin @ Jima - possibly not, but at least I can spell practice correctly when used as a noun & remain polite to posters who annoy me!

MrsFlorrick Wed 05-Jun-13 11:33:54

OP. you def. need a break!! With 4 D and you dH away. Yes you deserve more than a week. I only have two and am barely managing to stay above water.

I think giving two options: camp or granny in Dorset is excellent. Not only does she feel she has a choice (important at 14) but she may actually be happier spending a quiet week with her granny than jumping around the wild at a camp.

Fwiw. I was forced on summer camps by my parents. For entirely different (and much less valid reasons - my mother wanted time alone with her new husband - her 3rd!). It wasn't good. It didn't make me less shy at all.

Bearing in mind that this was in the early 1980s <showing age-gimmer> and in France, what went on at those camps means I would never ever send my teenage daughter (or son) to something like that. The camp "leaders" were basically uni students all the summers i went. One summer, one of the male camp leaders slept with two of the girls (he was 20 they were 14). I was introduced to alcohol and cannabis at 12 at camp. One year the female camp leader brought cannabis for us all to smoke (it kept us quiet at night!).

As I said this was in France and in the 1980s so things in the UK will no doubt be different But still the idea terrifies me !

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 11:40:19

excellent plan, MI. duck out now, Spidey.

oscarwilde Wed 05-Jun-13 11:48:21

Hmm - no response as yet so I am guessing that your 14 yr old is notionally in charge at home from whatever time they all get up at until you get in at 12, and will be for the 6 weeks of hersummer holidays.

As the eldest in my very large family I was usually in this position even though my Mum was an SAHM. I was "in charge" when she went out on errands, disappeared to the neighbours for hours for a gossip, went away for the weekend with my Dad etc etc. You get the picture. It was the 70's/early 80's and by the time I was 13, my parents were perfectly comfortable to depart for 5 days and leave me with 5+ to look after. It was a total pain, totally impacted my relationship with my siblings in a negative way and has massively formed my character and approach to life generally.

I am of the "I've paid for it and if you honestly give it a go, I think you'll enjoy it" brigade. 14 is still v young to be allowed to opt out of activities and family life generally. Even a shy child in the right setting can be encouraged out of their shell and it is within your power to request that she is treated sensitively and not just given the standard jolly hockey sticks approach.

That said - I do think you are being VERY unreasonable. You can't expect her to be the adult in the house for 7 hrs per day, 6 weeks in a row and then treat her as a small child and not consult with her on your plans for your week off from the kids. That week is effectively her only week off too. If I was being sent on a residential trip with my siblings I would still feel responsible for them even if there were other adults around. In loco parentis totally. If she doesn't consider it to be a fun activity then I wouldn't force her to go.

I think that you should apologise to her, sincerely. Then explain you would really like the week off to yourself and ask if she would prefer to go to your Mum's. Then I would have a chat to your Mum to ask if she would come to stay for some of the holidays so that your daughter doesn't feel like the responsible party all of the time. The activity people should be willing to switch the deposit to the balance due. You are still sending 3 kids their way.

SgtTJCalhoun Wed 05-Jun-13 11:52:24

I can only imagine all of you going on about snogging were snoggable teenagers or have forgotten how awful it felt to be an unconfident, unattractive teenager who no boy would have considered snogging, ever! Honestly some of you sound clueless.

Verycold Wed 05-Jun-13 13:03:55

Spot on oscarwilde

I never snogged when I went to these camps/UK. I was shy, to begin with and anxious about loosing stuff, not to mention the fist time I went to England terrified of not understanding a single word.
But I did have lots of fun. And yes, I did learn that you can deal with situations better than you expected before trying.

Crumbledwalnuts Wed 05-Jun-13 13:38:17

I would bribe her too. I understand the "week to yourself". Grandma's if not summer camp.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 13:46:38

SgtT, I wasn't very snogable as an early teen. MI & I fancy the arsing around snogging bit now as proper grown ups!

To be honest, a day filled with activities that I just had to pitch up to would be bliss. No organising anyone, worrying that they did or didn't like it, not really an issue if I was a bit rubbish at it and if I really didn't feel like doing it, I could say my ankle was a bit sore or I had a headache & sit at the side unlike when you are a parent & no one gives a toss if you have a sore ankle or a headache.

God, youth is wasted on the young! grin

oscarwilde Wed 05-Jun-13 13:52:00

Ah - I see you are a journalist and therefore quite possibly work from home. 4 kids underfoot for 6+ weeks is likely to be pretty hardcore in that case, though plenty of late evening movie sessions might help them to sleep in until a civilised hour. How receptive is your Mum to two at a time one week on, one week off ? smile

What you really need is a Gaeltacht. In Ireland it's a rite of passage to be shipped off to a rural Irish speaking area for a 3 week period, staying with a local family crammed in bunkbeds 4 to a box room and eating nothing but beans and fishfingers while attending morning school in the holidays and playing basketball etc in the afternoons, conversing in Irish all the time on pain of expulsion. School hols are 3 months long though at second level unless it's an exam year so it could be worse grin

The week you have arranged sounds far preferable to me but if you are going to be out at work/relying on your eldest heavily to keep order with the boys I do think you are being unfair not to have treated her in a more adult fashion. My parents were great in that regard, but nonetheless it is only 20 yrs after I left home that I have normalish sibling relationships though I still tell them what to do all the time according to my DH

LoveMyTeens Wed 05-Jun-13 13:52:35

If it were me I'd let her stay at home and have some quality mother-daughter time. Book her a free make-up session and take her shopping and out for lunch. She's at the age when she isn't sure if she's a child or a grown-up, and she probably thinks you don't want her around. Then, when DH is back, book YOURSELF on a holiday with friends! Win-win in my book smile

felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 14:10:37

Wow I joined this site hoping to get some good advice on my younger teens but its full of arsey do gooders correcting other peoples grammar and trying to prove points which are totally irrelevant to the thread (PostBellumBugsy). Jimalfie you sound great and I think your response was totally justified, what a bunch of self satisfied losers......rant over.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 14:21:56

Ah Felicity - welcome to Mumsnet. Always good to see a new poster getting stuck in with the insults!

SgtTJCalhoun Wed 05-Jun-13 14:23:37

What ALL of us felicity?

TanteRose Wed 05-Jun-13 14:25:11

Wow, felicity...

You OK?


bigTillyMint Wed 05-Jun-13 14:27:32

I agree tha tyou most definitely need a week off from your DS, but how to make a 14yo go on a week away?

I would have jumped at the chance with both feet, but DD(soon to be 14) would only go if she was going with a friend, and she is a very outgoing, sporty, friendly teenconfused

MI is right, of coursewink - get your DH and DD to sort it out!

felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 15:16:27

No not all of you! There are lots of lovely supportive posts from people genuinely trying to be helpful as well. Shame about the few idiots trying to dazzle us with their 'intelligence' though. My 12 year old DD off sick today finds it very funny, says she thought girls grew out of bitching by adulthood :-)

That's Mumsnet for you.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 15:22:56

.... and even the "intelligent" idiot had the good grace to welcome you - despite the stinging attack! grin

motherinferior Wed 05-Jun-13 15:44:17

There's nothing actually wrong with intelligence...

felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 15:58:06

Of course there isn't but trying to correct another user (who was making a point valid to the original post) about dofe when they actually volunteer for it is arrogant at best

motherinferior Wed 05-Jun-13 16:04:20

(well, it wasn't 'trying to' correct. It was correcting. Practice as a noun does take a C. But as you were.)

felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 16:10:53

Actually it was the other person quoting from the dofe rule book I was referring to, but you're just as bad. So only high brow people who care about such stuff should bother to post then? Don't think I'll bother with this any further. Not really a forum for all is it??

Jimalfie Wed 05-Jun-13 16:17:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 16:29:28

Crikey Felicity! I didn't start the DofE thing, I just responded to it. Why is that ok for Jima to bring up but not me?

14 year olds do go out on their own for expeditions. Has it crossed your mind I might be a volunteer too? Probably not, because you have a view that I'm too arrogant, idiotic, high brow and dazzlingly intelligent!

Just relax a bit. This is a discussion forum and yes it is for everyone who wants to post on it - regardless of how idiotic, arrogant & high brow others might like to think we are are!

felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 16:38:31

Ahh but Jimalfies post about the DofE was relevant to the original thread whereas you were just trying to be a smartarse. What you said added nothing to the thread, nor did it help the original poster in any way, you just wanted to make someone else look wrong. You clearly have way too much time on your hands

Pom bear anyone?

GoblinGranny Wed 05-Jun-13 16:40:47

Are you certain that you are a new poster, felicity?
it seems as if you fit right in here. grin

Is there a rule that posts have to be relevant?


felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 16:47:16

Hahaha I'm actually enjoying this now! So are DS13 and DD12 both looking over my shoulder. Sorry to come across so argumentative but really cannot stand self righteous people who try and make others look silly for no reason. So immature and nasty says DD :-) Think she's got the right idea, oh and to the original poster DS says you should make your daughter go to the summer camp and she'll be fine but DD says no way she'll hate you if you do. Hope this is helpful and relevant

PostBellumBugsy Wed 05-Jun-13 16:50:35

Back to the OP - because I'm too much of a wanker up my own smartarse with too much time on my hands to comment on anything else or offer my thoughts on the OPs situation! (Thank you to both Jima & felicity for the barrage of insults.)

Spidermama, sincerely hope it works out with your DD and you manage to reach a compromise that both of you are happy with.

felicity1971 Wed 05-Jun-13 16:53:14

Couldn't have put it better myself PostBellumBugsy :-)

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 05-Jun-13 18:22:59

some people would say that coming onto a site and lecturing people how to behave is a tad self-righteous...

spidey, oscarwilde raises an excellent point - who will be dealing with the kids 5-12? if it is dd then all bets are off imo and she should be able to pout hard for a straight week if that's what she wants to do.

Is 12pm 12 noon?


QueenOfCats Wed 05-Jun-13 19:58:41

Where is this camp op?

Sorry to hijack but I think this would be good for my dd smile

differentnameforthis Thu 06-Jun-13 07:41:35

I'm afraid I am a heartless parent, it's paid for, your [sic] going, end of discussion

See, I guess that is where some of us differ, as I would never pay for something like this without asking my child if it is something they would like to do. Whatever their age!

I come at it from the POV that, what if there was no camp to send her to? What if you were a single parent (i.e you had the children 24/7 all by yourself)? What if you couldn't afford it?

Yes, 4 kids is a handful, but I disagree with this Parents need to see their own limits in the context it is used in. I agree in essence, but it is more like parents need to know their limits & not have more children than they could cope with on a day to day basis

I can cope with 2, if dh went away for 7 weeks, I can cope with 2 without the need the ship them off & make them someone else's problem for a week.

Every parent needs a break whether they have 1 child or 7, but you can't force your children to do something they feel massively uncomfortable with for the sake of a break! I disagree also, that it would be character forming! Infact, she wants so badly not to do it, it could go the other way!

You say she would probably sit in her room most of the time, so hardly going to get in your way! At 14 she is more than capable of making her lunch/dinner, so hardly high maintenance! My point being, she is old enough to have her at home & for you to still have a 'break'.

differentnameforthis Thu 06-Jun-13 08:07:08

So a chronically shy 14 year old needs to learn to suck it up, roll with it, get their act together and learn to face whatever the world throws at them, but her mother is perfectly entitled to pack her off to a camp because the idea of looking after her own children for 7 weeks is too much for her?! Doesn't she need to suck it up?

This ^^

Is 12pm 12 noon? Yes. 12am is midnight

cory Thu 06-Jun-13 08:31:46

I think Oscarville is spot on.

I have every understanding for the OPs need for me time. But it needs to go hand in hand with an understanding that her 14yo dd is growing up too, that she might feel a similar need, and that the clue to getting teenagers to behave in a mature way is to talk to them as if they were mature.

If the OP makes decisions above her dd's head as if she were a baby, she can't expect the dd to suddenly turn round and understand her mother's needs like an adult.

felicity1971 Thu 06-Jun-13 08:53:54

some people would say that coming onto a site and lecturing people how to behave is a tad self-righteous...
Oh dear oh dear AitchTwoOhOneTwo, whereas telling people how to spell is not at all is it! Lol as my kids would say............

Back to the point must say I totally agree with cory

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Thu 06-Jun-13 09:13:48

sorry? it's not a competition... it's perfectly possible for two people to be self-righteous on the same thread.

scherazadey Thu 06-Jun-13 09:35:14

Aitch it would seem that you think it is a competition because you feel the need to keep replying, why don't you stfu? Please?

zipzap Thu 06-Jun-13 09:43:51

When I was her age, my sis and I got to go to a camp - my sis wanted to go riding and to do outdoorsy activities which I would have hated. She ended up going with a family friend and has a great time but I would have been thoroughly miserable.

I managed to discover a different camp - computer camp - (about 30 years ago so a new thing and they had only just started to run them). I loved it and had a great time - but my sis would have hated it.

Is it worth looking around to see if you could find a different camp that she would like to go to? Assuming you are able to forfeit the deposit or get it back. Might also be worth checking at what point you become liable for paying what percentage of the overall cost. The linger you leave it the more you might find yourself liable to pay regardless of whether or not she goes.

I think yanbu to want her to go to camp - but maybe yabu to have signed her up at her age without talking to her about it and finding a camp that she would actually like to go to.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Thu 06-Jun-13 09:48:58

replying is The Whole Point of a discussion board, sherezady...

anyway, interesting first post, welcome to Mumsnet. grin

TanteRose Thu 06-Jun-13 09:53:49

goodness, the Thread Police are out and about confused

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Thu 06-Jun-13 09:57:28

aye, or mebbe a lone cop gone rogue... wink

scherazadey Thu 06-Jun-13 09:59:51

Not my first post by a very long way and, oh dear, you spelt my name wrong

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Thu 06-Jun-13 10:02:30

nope, not when i checked if you ever posted before i didn't... two posts now. congratulations!

scherazadey Thu 06-Jun-13 10:05:53

New account dear, my email was corrupted - 102 posts on previous :-)

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Thu 06-Jun-13 10:12:18

excellent, congratulations, that's very convincing. so the only other conclusion then, is that this is personal? because there's absolutely nothing i've said or done on this thread that would require me in particular to shut the fuck up. i was literally replying to someone addressing me directly on that last post (incidentally, it wasn't me who corrected anyone's spelling - not my thing).

after a full 105 posts on MN you should know that taking fights across threads is not nice, so perhaps you should leave it now? you don't want someone telling you to shut the fuck up.

ChewingOnLifesGristle Thu 06-Jun-13 10:16:32

This thread has turned very strange.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Thu 06-Jun-13 10:22:01

yars... and where's spidey? not like her to start a thread and not return... we need to know what the plan is now. (and if dd is looking after the kids in the morning, which is a Total Gamechanger).

Jins Thu 06-Jun-13 10:24:06

I've got a 15yo and I'm staggered that the op booked this without several very serious discussions about whether her 14yo wanted to go.

PGL type summer camp is ok if you're in primary school, borderline for year 7, by year 8 they are embarrassed to tell their friends and once they've hit year 9 it would be flat out refusal. Lame is the mildest word my 15yo used when I just tested an imaginary plan on him grin

I'd not send her. But then I'd not send any child to a PGL type summer camp. I've accompanied a group for a week and I still fail to see how the activities are meant to be character forming.

Send her to her grandmothers. She won't get the piss ripped out of her for that grin

Jimalfie Thu 06-Jun-13 10:40:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mumeeee Thu 06-Jun-13 17:46:27

I wouldn't make her go, I was very shy at that age and would have hated anything like that. I'm not shy now although am still a bit quite. I have also now tried some of those things and enjoyed them but it was my choice when I did them and I was not forced into to doing them,
I have 3 DDs and the middle one would have hated these activities t 14 she is now a confident adult.

Spidermama Tue 11-Jun-13 21:59:42

Wow! Great thread. Some excellent later posts. Sorry I'm only just catching up with it now. Thought it was done and dusted. Hello *Aitch*. You still here then? grin

As for the MNer concerned DD will be in charge in the summer hols -- Not the case. I have a friend who'll come in the mornings most times. MIL will come for a week and my mum another. I look forward to the day I can leave DD in charge but at the moment it's not fair on any of them.

In brief (I should be asleep as am working at 5) DD said she'd go if her friend went but friend's mum didn't fancy it. (Fair enough. V expensive). I called the place and they gave me the deposit back so that was good.
DD is happy to go to Grandma's in Dorset for a week and will be spoiled there.

Oh yes I forgot to mention there is the added bonus that I GET MY WEEK OFF. YES!! YOU BEAUTY! BACK OF THE NET!!

So I think an adequate solution's been implemented for all.

cory Tue 11-Jun-13 22:01:45

Glad it ended happily, Spidermama. Enjoy your holiday! grin

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Tue 11-Jun-13 22:02:14


Glad it all worked out. All that free time to MNet

Spidermama Mon 17-Jun-13 18:41:33

grin Aitch! SSSSSsssssssssssssssssssssssss.

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Mon 17-Jun-13 20:58:56


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