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To expect DS17 to spend whole of holiday with us?

(85 Posts)
tumpymummy Wed 06-Mar-19 00:37:03

Had a may half term holiday to Spain all booked (since last Sep), fly out Fri eve, spend w/e with friends, hire car drive to different part of coast, fly home at end of week. However lovely Ryan air have changed our Fri eve flight to a Fri morning which means kids will miss last day of term now. Ds17 doesn't want to miss a day of school (hardworking year 12, expected A* at A level) so he wants to now fly out on his own on the Tues to join us at the second destination. Plus this means he can also go to a small festival at home on the weekend now. Doesn't look like this will cost any extra, but hubby and DD14 are disappointed that he wouldn't be with us for first part of holiday. I'm not sure how comfortable I am at leaving him home alone for a few days, going to a festival, then flying alone. He is a sensible kid, and has stayed home a couple of nights on his own before but this time we would be out of the country (grandparents do live only an hr away). Really torn about whether to Rebook his flights for later? Part of me realises he is growing up and wants to do his own thing, but on the other hand I really value our family holidays when we actually get to do things and spend time together. DS and DD have always got on well together so she will miss him for the time he isn't there. Would welcome others opinions pls?

tumpymummy Wed 06-Mar-19 23:37:22

Thanks all for your replies. I have booked the later Tuesday flight for DS. Revising isn't an issue for this holiday as both kids have their exams after Easter. Lots of you have given good advice about setting boundaries, managing the festival - Thank you. Grandparents will be on hand (Just in case) No parties will be allowed. Thank you to the PP who mentioned making sure he realises he can ask for help if something goes wrong. I will also ctc one of his friends mum's to let her know the situation. Locking up the house correctly isn't a massive issue thankfully as a neighbour will need to come in and feed the cats once he has left. Of course DD14 then asked if she could go to the festival too and fly out later with him. That was a No! (Which she understood why!) Thanks all for helping me make my decision.

ssd Wed 06-Mar-19 19:53:39

He sounds a nice sensible lad, I'd let him go

MsTSwift Wed 06-Mar-19 19:50:41

Wise words light.

LightDrizzle Wed 06-Mar-19 19:41:22

I understand your concern about the festival, but as for your disappointment that he doesn’t want to spend the whole holiday with you, I’d be very careful to keep that to yourselves and not let him see it.
I think the harder you pull, the harder they pull. It’s really frustrating to spend time with parents/ nanna/ MIL and instead of them just enjoying the time and being in the moment, there is the cloud of recent or imminent guilt tripping because you’re not there more, or on the dog's birthday or whatever.
You want him to choose to spend time you because he enjoys your company. At 17, parents take a back step to peers, but if you give them freedom and respect their increasing autonomy, they stay close.
My relationship with my adult daughter, now 27, is one of the unexpected joys of my life.

OrchidInTheSun Wed 06-Mar-19 17:51:17

Good point tapas grin

Smotheroffive Wed 06-Mar-19 15:17:00

Can PPs not see that each 17 yo is so different in terms of.maturity attitudes and behaviours.
It really.is entirely irrelevant who went on holiday, its about the considerations, and doing it well so everyone can enjoy their activities.

Smotheroffive Wed 06-Mar-19 15:13:16

@waterrat as you can read in the OP, it isn't simply a matter of.going off to a festival. Leaving an empty home, and weighing up his ability to responsibly manage his alcohol levels around peers that he can't control, and more... It's not as simple.ple as DPs being home and him heading to a.festival... which actually is a big step in itself, I've seen and heard all the car crashes that are festivals done badly, by organisers and festival goers. The hospital admissions and worse. It's not a blithely made decision as a responsible dp.

TapasForTwo Wed 06-Mar-19 12:57:42

With respect Orchid, you leaving home at 17 and moving to another country was irrelevant to the OP's question. We weren't talking about you either grin

I agreed that it would be fine for the 17 year old to join his parents later.

recklessgran Wed 06-Mar-19 12:51:44

Definitely let him grow up OP. You've said yourself he's a sensible 17 so for goodness sake let him do his thing! If it helps, at 17 I went on holiday to Spain with three girlfriends for a week and no "adult" in sight.

OrchidInTheSun Wed 06-Mar-19 12:50:52

With respect Tapas, we're not talking about your child. We're talking about the OP's who is perfectly happy to join his family after the weekend.

SunburstsOrMarbleHalls Wed 06-Mar-19 12:46:42

He sounds like a sensible person and I would say he has presented a reasonable compromise. He gets to attend the last day of term and go to a small festival with friends and he gets to spend time with you all when he flies out to join you.

My DS was sad when his older sister stopped coming on family holidays I think it was the fact he missed her company and though he would be bored if it was just him and his parents and when they are teenagers they don't always find it as easy to make instant friends with others like when they are younger.

DS is 17 now and this May we are going on a week long cottage holiday in the UK. We have given DS the choice if he wants to come or not and he is still yet to decide.

Last August my DD22 had graduated and came home for a month before moving full time to London and DS decided to not come on a cottage holiday with us then as he wanted to spend the week with his sister. Both were given the choice to either come with us or stay home. We stocked up the fridge with some nice meals and treats for them and they had a great time together. It was great for them to spend some quality time together as siblings and it was a nice opportunity for me and DP to have a week away alone.

He has decided that he wants to come with us on a two week holiday to Turkey in summer though but we are realistic that this may be one of the final holidays he decides to join us. We have booked him a separate hotel room so he has his own space as we all felt he was too old to be sharing with us in an all inclusive family room and he grinds his teeth.

KurriKurri Wed 06-Mar-19 12:34:04

Great opportunit for him to have abit of independence and to travel on his own. Next year he might want to go travelling when he finishes school - he's in no way too young to manage this and it's good he has the confidence to think he can do it no problem.

Let him do his own thing and then join you later. And for those saying ' have you got a 17yr old boy ?' I have had one and he was often left on his own if we went on a holiday he didn't fancy much. he'd have his friends over - no problem they were all respectful when staying at our house, smoked outside, didn't get drunk etc.
At some point you have to trust your children to be able to make good decisions and cope on their own. And 17 (very enarly an adult) is as good a time as any.

Dungeondragon15 Wed 06-Mar-19 12:27:55

I wouldn't be happy about DD doing this at 17, mainly because I would feel stressed about whether they will leave on time for the plane, lock up the house etc. Could he stay at your parents while you are on holiday and leave from there?

HeadsDownThumbsUpEveryone Wed 06-Mar-19 12:24:41

I find it mindboggling that you booked a holiday when he should be using his time off during May half term revising! Surely you book the holiday for after his exams.

caughtinanet Wed 06-Mar-19 12:19:39

I left home at 17. He’ll be fine

That's totally illogical and makes no sense at all

I know this isn't the same issue but two 17 year olds were killed in stabbings at the weekend doing things that millions of other 17 year olds do day in, day out. By your logic that couldn't happen as you went to a park when you were 17 and came to no harm.

Crabbyandproudofit Wed 06-Mar-19 12:18:58

Definitely let him join the holiday later. Have lots of discussion beforehand, re being alone in the house and responsibility for securing and getting to the airport. Run through as many scenarios as you can think of for what could go wrong (friends wanting to come over, loosing his wallet and keys at the festival, transport to the airport) then trust him and yourself. You have raised him, hopefully to be sensible and capable. Having a short break from each other will help all of you get used to the idea that he will probably be leaving home to go to university (and you simply won't know what he is doing most of the time).

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Wed 06-Mar-19 12:17:54

I’d let him.

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Wed 06-Mar-19 12:16:43

He sounds like a son to be proud of, and I agree with the majority on here - let him stay home, and come out on the Tuesday.

Alsohuman Wed 06-Mar-19 12:16:12

I left home at 17. He’ll be fine.

PinkHeart5914 Wed 06-Mar-19 12:14:13

His 17 a young man, not a child anymore. Yes I’d let him do what he wanted

How do you ever learn anything if even at 17 mummy controls what you can and can’t do

TapasForTwo Wed 06-Mar-19 12:10:07

It isn't about trust in my case Orchid because DD is trustworthy. It is more about her feeling isolated and lacking self confidence. We have no family within 150 miles and not anyone that DD would feel comfortable seeking help from if she needed it.

Until you have had a child who has been bullied to the point of anxiety, depression, self harm and borderline anorexia I don't think you have any right to judge.

I can't wait to be able to say to DD I'm off for a week, I'll see you when I get back. In the OP's case I would be happy to leave the DC at home for a few days.

I reiterate - not all 17 year olds are the same.

OrchidInTheSun Wed 06-Mar-19 12:01:35

Also he is not riddled with self doubt. He wants to stay behind.

OrchidInTheSun Wed 06-Mar-19 11:59:04

No of course not Tapas. But how are they ever going to learn if we give them no responsibility?

How can we expect our children to be self sufficient when they're 18 when we don't even trust them to stay home alone for a weekend at 17?

waterrat Wed 06-Mar-19 10:48:33

surely at 17 he is also entitled to do something he wants to do on holiday? ie. go to a festival? I was going alone to festivals from 16 and that is very normal behaviour.

Remember he is nearly an adult - you are lucky he wants to come at all! I think it is respectful to him to let him relax in the way he chooses.

He is working hard at school - it's important for him to have a life of his own and enjoy himself with his friends. Why would he want to go and spend a weekend with loads of your friends....give the kid a break.

caughtinanet Wed 06-Mar-19 10:03:53

Not all 17 year olds are the same Orchid hmm

Some are confident and outgoing and some are riddled with anxiety, dealing with bring bullied and don't have much confidence in themselves. They aren't you

Exactly!

There's always one who reared themselves and 13 siblings from the age of 2.5 who thinks that everyone is the same. No one I know IRL thinks like this, ime most parents would give this proper consideration before deciding

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