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Taking only one of your DCs on holiday

(38 Posts)
Chunkamatic Tue 07-Jun-11 00:21:26

Ok so Myself, DP, Ds1 (3.4) and DS2 (16mo) have arranged to go on holiday with DP's best friend and wife and their DD (9mo).

We are not much looking forward to it as we will be staying in their apartment which they have been to often, and having two toddlers is very different to having one baby. So our approach has been to try and lower our expectations of how actually relaxing this might be.. i.e not to imagine that there will be long boozy lunches followed by hours lounging in the sun. Instead to prepare for children that won't sleep well due to unfamilarity/heat/illness derived from aeroplanes and snatching a couple of hours when they nap in the afternoon. We have tried to underline our concerns to our friends and they seem to understand so lets wait and see.. until...

DP comes up with genius idea that we should just take DS1. Leave DS2 with grandparents. This is, apparently, because I am always advocating avoiding stressful situations with toddlers. FFS I am, but in the style of dont mention chocolate when just about to sit down to eat lunch, not abandon one of your children because they don't quite fit your idea of a holiday for a week! AIBU? He says yes, he is only just over ayear and a week at nana's would be holiday in itself for him hmm. I say this is bonkers, you cannot select one child over the other, and even if he doesn't understand now he will soon come to hear about it from older brother when he is older!

I am a 2n dchild and cannot imagine how hurt I would have been knowing my parents had chosen my sister to take on holiday, no matter at what age.

DP is an only child and has no grasp of such things. Only that I am a stupid hippy (his words, not mine).

worraliberty Tue 07-Jun-11 00:25:26

To be honest I doubt even your 3yr old will remember it in years to come.

I do think you are being unreasonable for booking a holiday that you're 'not much looking forward to'...I mean really what's the point? confused

But if you'd enjoy it better with both your kids then YANBU.

Personally I'd rather go away with two toddlers than a 9 month old baby anyway.

Chunkamatic Tue 07-Jun-11 00:31:49

I'm more thinking of photographic evidence than their actually memories!

We booked it a year ago when we were deluded as to what having two toddlers in tow would really mean! And also, beacuse it is their apartment, I feel a bit awkward about how the week will go, the unfamiliarity of it etc. There is more pressure (i feel) because we are going with friends, iyswim?

PercyPigPie Tue 07-Jun-11 00:33:36

I couldn't do it myself, but then I am probably a stupid hippy too grin. My evil SIL did this recently and I was shocked.

worraliberty Tue 07-Jun-11 00:37:15

Oh really I wouldn't worry about it. I can't see one of your children holding that against you forever..especially if you explain they were a baby smile

The only problem here I can see is that you might enjoy your holiday less because of it.

If you can get over that...you might really enjoy it more and I'm sure your youngest will have a great time being spoilt. Your oldest will also have a great time so everyone's a winner!

fearnelinen Tue 07-Jun-11 00:39:38

My evil SIL does this, calls it dividing and conquering shock honestly, I don't think her DCs (8, 6, 4) have ever spent an entire school holiday together, she ships them off to friends and grandparents.
I wouldn't do it, I would however leave them both at nana's - that would be just as much a holiday for them as a week in the sun, then you can enjoy your week.

Chunkamatic Tue 07-Jun-11 00:47:47

DP and I are actually having a week away, just the two of us, in October. So not like this is our only chance to relax.

Maybe it's just me, but had I found out my sister had been taken on holiday instead of me at any stage it would have caused some major fights growing up - I used to get upset because my baby photos were on projector slides and hers were in photo albums! I insisted that this was a sign they loved her more!!!!

millie30 Tue 07-Jun-11 00:49:27

I wouldn't leave one child out. There also seems to be quite a good ratio of adults to children in your group so not sure why it will be so bad?

radancer Tue 07-Jun-11 00:53:45

My BF left her youngest with his grandparents when he was 16 months. They were going to Spain and they thought the heat and the travelling would just unsettle him. He didn't care then, nor ever since.

I think you'll all - including your youngest - enjoy your holiday more if he stays with your grandparents.

radancer Tue 07-Jun-11 00:54:21

HIS grandparents.

magicmummy1 Tue 07-Jun-11 01:02:52

Yanbu. I wouldn't leave one child behind.

Chunkamatic Tue 07-Jun-11 01:09:22

The problem I have now is that when we all go (which we will, I am NOT leaving DS2 behind) that when if he is hard work then it will all be my fault as I have insisted he comes... yet again DP absolves himself of responsibilty. Grrrrrrrrr.

IveAhorseOutside Tue 07-Jun-11 01:10:23

YABU to even consider going on holiday with 2 toddlers. Just get a caravan in Butlins they can trash.

IveAhorseOutside Tue 07-Jun-11 01:11:16

Oh and your H is a dick for calling you a stupid anything.

startail Tue 07-Jun-11 01:32:32

I went away with my grand parents, without my sister when she was 6 and I was 8 (i don't think she wanted to come) a year or so later they took us both. No hard feelings.
A 16 month old won't remember and the 3 year old won't long term. However, the 3 year old may well have more fun without a tired grumpy 16 month old or he might miss his brother or want to be at Granny's too.
Only you know your children, but I'm sure that future bad feeling could be got around by making both the holiday and staying at Grandparents sound exciting and special - I'm sure they could take lots of "holiday" pictures of DD2 to show his big brother what he'd been up to.
I didn't do a hot pool type holiday until my DDs were 3 and 6 (DD2 still got me to hire a pushchair, because the seafront was a hike with little legs), but she was old enough to love the pool and the evening entertainment, at 16 months I think she would have just got hot, tired and cross.

5DollarShake Tue 07-Jun-11 01:45:30

My lovely old au pair said that her previous family did this. The older two were about 9 and 3 or 4, I think. They went to Florida with the older two, and left their youngest, the 2YO at home with her for two weeks!

Apparently the older two teased the younger one a bit as well before they left, along the lines of 'we're going on holiday and you're not'. sad

The 2YO really missed Mum while they were away. A used to try to arrange calls, but often Mum forgot (time difference, aparently) - in the end, she got a friend of hers to call up, pretending to be Mum - they did this a few times, and the little one was none the wiser and luckily got comfort from it.

I was shocked, if I'm honest. I don't actually think there's anything wrong with taking one and leaving one, per se - but it's clearly all in how you handle it, and surely you'd go out of your way to speak to the little one left behind, at least daily.

OP - YANBU, and I can see how infuriating it will be when (maybe if!) he plays up, it'll end up being more your problem to deal with, more than likely.

swash Tue 07-Jun-11 07:10:03

I wouldn't leave a 16 month old baby for a week. He'll surely muss you terribly.

swash Tue 07-Jun-11 07:10:32

Miss you terribly!

sunnydelight Tue 07-Jun-11 08:06:10

If the other family didn't have a nine month old I could kind of see where he was coming from (and I can't see any problem with leaving a 16mo with grandparents tbh, I think you are projecting far too much to think it would be an issue for him when he's older). However, it's a holiday where both families have little kids - it often isn't a "perfect match" in terms of ages and your friends know the ages of your kids so I can't really see the point of leaving one behind, especially as it doesn't seem to be what you want.

SuchProspects Tue 07-Jun-11 08:13:10

We took our DCs on holiday at 16 months and it was great fun watching them explore a new place - I would be really sad to miss out on that. But taking them on a holiday you aren't looking forward to sounds like a recipe for resentment and strife so your DH does have a point. It is much bigger than not mentioning chocolate in front of them when they can't have any, but it's still putting them in a situation you don't think is going to be successful.

"Maybe it's just me, but had I found out my sister had been taken on holiday instead of me at any stage it would have caused some major fights growing up - I used to get upset because my baby photos were on projector slides and hers were in photo albums! I insisted that this was a sign they loved her more!!!!"

If this actually is the reason you're against it YABVU. You would have found ways to believe your sister was favoured no matter what your parents had actually done and if your DS2 is so inclined he will too. That's not uncommon and it doesn't mean your sister was favoured nor that your DS1 is if you leave DS2 with grandparents this time.

The questions you should be asking really are will DS2 have a whale of a time at his grandparents' or will he be stressed because he's not with you? And will you enjoy the holiday without your DS2?

HowlingBitch Tue 07-Jun-11 08:18:29

I think it's preposterous! If it was just one of you going and two toddlers then I could see how it would be difficult but there are two of them and two of you! You are not being a stupid hippy you simply have family values. Take your baby with you and tell him to grow up!

TheBride Tue 07-Jun-11 08:21:34

Tbh I think most children at that age would prefer a lovely week with Granny than a week in a hot country which they're too young to appreciate.

BUT, the flip side is will he be upset because he misses you?

However, my view of holidays with babies/toddlers is "same shit, different location" grin.

TheMitfordsMaid Tue 07-Jun-11 08:23:04

I'm thinking of doing this, actually. My older son starts school in September and I am toying with the idea of taking him away for a weekend. My husband and I run a start-up business so it is impossible to have a family holiday at the moment but I really fancy the idea of some quality time with my son before he goes off to school. My younger son is 2 and won't remember.

My parents would often take just me or just my brother away on holiday, and I don't feel any sense of them favouring one or the other, as there was always a perfectly good reason for it. For example, I went skiing alone with my father one year because they felt my brother was too young to go. Later, I missed out on a summer holiday because I went away for 2 weeks that summer abroad with the Guides. So all fine.

If you want to take both and have no reason not to, then take both. Personally I'd leave your husband behind for calling you a stupid hippy.

cantspel Tue 07-Jun-11 08:25:26

Dont believe all the nightmare stories of taking 2 toddlers away on holiday. It is not all stress, sleepless toddlers and runny bellies. Infact often the opposite is true.
My boys are only 18 months apart and even though they are teenagers now we took them away somewhere not and sunny every year and often did long haul. Not one horror story in 15 years but lots of happy memories.

GnomeDePlume Tue 07-Jun-11 08:28:35

The whole point about taking your children on holiday when they are small is that no matter what chaos ensues you can look at your partner and say 'next time it will be easier' because it will be. If you dont take both it wont be easier next time it will be harder.

Oh yes, we have 3 DCs, your DP is a wimp, we look at people struggling with just one DC and say 'amateurs!'

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