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BIL's Wedding: Abroad, in termtime, aaargh!

(60 Posts)
Barefootgirl Sun 04-May-14 08:44:34

I am actually more upset by this than I realised at first. I'll try not to drip feed, so this might be long, please bear with me.

My BIL (DH's brother) is getting married in Greece next year. No particular reason for choosing Greece, beyond that its nice and hot and not too expensive. The wedding is on a Thursday, they want everyone to fly out on the previous Saturday and stay until the following Saturday. It will be the last week in June/beginning of July.

In principle, I think this is quite a nice idea. HOWEVER;

it is term-time! My DD is 11 and at special school. There is no way they will allow me to take her out for a whole week. My personal view is that in termtime, children should be at school unless they are ill. The school will fine us, to the tune of £60 per parent per day, so £720 for the five days.


Its DH's brother. I suggested to DH that he goes alone. He doesn't want to go without me, plus everyone will be upset if we are not at the wedding, it will look like a deliberate slight, cause huge family ructions, etc.

We havent been on holiday as a family since 2009, due to illness, unemployment, serious financial issues, etc. DH has been away for long weekends, etc with his friends, but I have been stuck here caring for DD. This would actually be our first holiday in 6 years, and i desperately need a break.

The wedding is not until July 2015. I have 14 months of stress about this. I actually feel very resentful towards my BIL for putting us into this position. He has a DD of his own, but she will be 16 by then, so presumably it won't matter so much for her.

Lilaclily Sun 04-May-14 08:47:34

Could your parents stay at your house and look after dd? Then you & dh can go alone? Even if it's just on the Wednesday & fly back on the Friday ?

ilovepowerhoop Sun 04-May-14 08:48:04

they sound very inconsiderate and have a cheek expecting everyone to go for a week for a wedding. Would you be having to pay your own flight and accommodation too for their special day?

If they want people with school aged children to go then they should have a wedding in the school holidays

arethereanyleftatall Sun 04-May-14 08:50:55

I thought the fine was �60 per parent per week, not per day.

Ihatemytoes Sun 04-May-14 08:51:29

We have exactly the same issue. DH is going, me and the DC staying at home.

jasminemai Sun 04-May-14 08:52:20

Its per week not per day

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Sun 04-May-14 08:52:42

I was going to suggest what Lilaclily said. If that isn't possible then I think DH should go on his own (as you've suggested). It's not fair to expect you to take DD out of school. I feel sad for you though as it's obvious you do want to attend as a family with the stress of taking DD out of school.

katandkits Sun 04-May-14 08:52:49

The school can only fine you per absence, not per day as far as I know so it should only be £120 fine you are looking at.
Won't his 16 year old be sitting her GCSE exams then? Sometimes they run into the beginning of July.

I would be miffed anyway. A weeks family holiday in the summer is bloody expensive. To expect everyone to spend a thousand pounds or so because you are getting married is a bit much. In your shoes if you have the money I would want to spend it on a family holiday of your choice during the school holiday.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Sun 04-May-14 08:53:28

with out the stress obviously.

Andrewofgg Sun 04-May-14 08:56:32

I share your feelings; the daughter of friends of ours had a huge wedding and we would not have wanted to miss it, but it was abroad. Cheaper for them but had hijacked out holiday and others' too and transferred the cost to their guests.

If DPs can't help then DH goes alone. Or both stay away. Term is term.

indigo18 Sun 04-May-14 08:57:44

I would go if it's £60 a week. Is there no chance you could get permission, given the circumstances/ People make a big fuss about what would be missed, but it is near the end of term so probably lots of activity type stuff going on. I see kids being out of school for a week and it makes no difference really! (as long as it's a one-off). I am a teacher.

LittleBearPad Sun 04-May-14 08:59:48

It so self important requiring people to spend a weeks holiday celebrating a wedding. Any guest with family is young yo be in the same situation.

Can you go for a day or two and ask your parents yo look after dd.

Otherwise DH goes for a day or two.

jasminemai Sun 04-May-14 09:00:07

I have been on 2 term time hols so far this school year. I went on two term times hols every year since I started school as well. I would go without a second thought.

Euphemia Sun 04-May-14 09:00:44

They are selfish. Sod family ructions. I wouldn't go.

grumblepuss Sun 04-May-14 09:00:46

Speak to your brother in law.
Explain the situation - explain about term time holidays are a total no no now.

Could you miss the wedding but fly on the Friday evening and stay for the weekend for the festivities/a bit of sun.
Send your DH for the wedding earlier.

indigo18 Sun 04-May-14 09:01:02

GCSEs well over by July. Private schools break up as early as end of June.

Hassled Sun 04-May-14 09:03:05

They may have randomly decided they want people to be there for a week, but that's not necessary - could you go for the couple of days surrounding the actual wedding only?

Barefootgirl Sun 04-May-14 09:07:26

I think most GCSEs have finished by the last week of June, but thats not the point, is it? He knows perfectly well that our DD is much younger than his and will still be in school.

My other concern (and i know i said i wouldn't drip feed, sorry), is that my DD has behavioural issues alongside her SEN. She has been excluded a number of times, both formally and informally. She has been left without an educational provision for months while the LA faffed around trying to find something. Now she is in a special school on a part-time timetable, receiving a fairly inadequate (IMHO) education....and yet the feckers will STILL fine me if i take her away from a week of playing football and card games, mucking out the chickens and going trampolining! Seriously, that is all they seem to do at school. I tutor her at home to keep her maths and English skills up to date!

I know its a separate issue and not related to the wedding, but the inadequacy of her education adds insult to injury when it comes to the fine.

I am really torn whether to go or not. I want to go, I'd love a week in Greece and i am really at breaking point. We had a week in Italy planned for this half-term coming, but DH lost his job in February, so we couldn't afford to go, so this will be another year with no holiday for us.

Its so pathetic, i can feel myself getting emotional just writing this and its pure self-pity.

jasminemai Sun 04-May-14 09:08:55

They probably wont fine you if a good attendance record as I said I have gone twice with no fine this year so far alone and they just sent a letter saying may fine blah de blah

verdiletta Sun 04-May-14 09:10:38

Exactly, you don't have to go for a week (though it does seem a shame to travel all that way and have all that expense for just a couple of days).
A close family wedding imo is more important than a few days of school, as long as no exams etc.
Surely your dc's school would give permission for them to miss school for a close family wedding? I took mine out of school for 1.5 days for a wedding at the other end of the country- I just wrote a note to the teacher and it was fine. We're in Scotland though, don't think there's fines here?

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Sun 04-May-14 09:14:59

People who choose to get married abroad should expect not to have their family and friends all able to go.

Mid-week. Term-time. The cost of a whole week's break for three. If it can't be afforded then you don't go. If it can be afforded perhaps you'd choose a different family holiday altogether.

Any mileage in the idea that you find a baby-sitter so you can go for a few days, say Wednesday to Saturday/Sunday?

ImAThrillseekerBunny Sun 04-May-14 09:16:28

Unless your DH's family is hugely unreasonable then I think you should be able to get away without family ructions if DH goes alone. Just say the magic words "Bloody Michael Gove" at every opportunity and possibly stretch the truth to suggest that DD might be taken off-roll and you could be fined per parent per session. As long as you stress that you are the victim of an appallingly intransigent head teacher who simply won't allow the absence and you are furious then it shouldn't be held against you.

OTOH if you really want the holiday, the fine would be 120 quid tops, and the schooling she's getting is crap.....

sooperdooper Sun 04-May-14 09:22:05

They can't say how long you go for, that's unreasonable.

But if the fine is £60 and you want to go then see if you can take her out of school. They should've thought about school holidays though, fools

Appletini Sun 04-May-14 09:23:02

People who choose to get married abroad should expect not to have their family and friends all able to go.


I don't get it personally, seems a bit ott to make your wedding into an enforced holiday.

CountessVronsky Sun 04-May-14 09:25:10

People who get married abroad during term time should brace themselves for absentee family members.

Your brother should go alone.

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