DD1 trip to London, AIBU?(47 Posts)
DD1 (15) has been invited to spend a week or two in London with a good friend and her family this summer. We live in Canada now after moving here from London a few years ago.
DH and I are not sure whether we should let her go - I think I am leaning towards yes and he is definitely leaning towards no. The flight will be expensive and we don’t really have the money (although we could scrape it together). But the bigger issue is DD1 - She is finally starting to settle in here and make some friends and we don’t want her constantly looking back to London and her life there and rushing back to old friends rather than concentrating on her new life & friends here. She did not have the easiest transition when we moved.
This friend has visited us for 10 days each of the previous 2 summers.
DD1 will be extremely disappointed not to go. I don’t know what to do. AIBU to keep her from seeing her best friend in the world? Or is it pragmatic to encourage her to be “more Canadian” and have her stay here for the summer?
It does seem rather unfair to expect her friend to do all of the travelling, although I can appreciate your dilemma.
I would let her go. It's great she's settling in in Canada but I don't think that should mean forgetting her ties to London.
Let her go. My wife moved to the UK from South Africa aged 13 she's 29 now - she still has close friendships still with friends from SA as well as UK friends. Cultures are different and it has always been a blessing she can talk to certain friends who 'get' things.
I'd let her go- but if you actually cant afford it, and it sacrifices other things then no.
I think she should go. Her friend has come to you, I think it's your DD"s turn to do the travelling now.
That is a good point about friend doing all the travelling.
I think it would be very mean to not let her go, IF you can afford it. You may want her to be ‘more Canadian’ but she’s not. A couple of weeks revisiting where she used to live and old friends might help her realise that she hasn’t lost it all, just because you decided to move her, that it’s all still there for her if she wants it. She might not want to live in Canada with you in a few years time.
@JoshJoshJosh I agree with you about cultures being different and it’s great that your wife still has old friends in SA that she can relate to. I don’t want the DC to forget their English roots.
Why do you want her to stop being British? She'll always be British too even if she lives the rest of her life in Canada and takes Canadian Citizenship?
Let her go. Stopping her will not endear her to being 'more Canadian'.
You moved her there when she had (I am assuming) no say in the matter so you should let her go back to visit her friends.
DH and I are originally Canadian but both DC were born in London. We all have dual citizenship and my DM is originally English. So I guess it’s not clear cut “we are all Canadian now”.
I can see your point about wanting her to be more Canadian but to suddenly change at 13 from being British to Canadian is a big ask. If you can afford it let her go as her friend can't always travel to Canada. She'll probably have a great time and come back full of it and ready to get on with Canadian life. IME when you have lived in two countries there are things you value about both.
@PaquitaVariation you have named one of my biggest fears, that she will want to move abroad after high school / uni (exactly what I did in my 20’s ). In fact she is already talking about international universities, not that we could necessarily afford them.
Why the insistence on her being more Canadian?
You chose to move to the UK and raise your DC there - her childhood was spent in the UK and she is, for all intents and purposes, British.
Hi Hearts I think you should let her go, especially when she will be staying with her friends family. And it may be that although she has friends in Canada now, they may never be as close as she obviously is to her English friends. You say she would be upset not to go, but her not going will just make her want to go even worse !
What is it that your dh is concerned about ? Is it her safety or her being so far away ? I know it's always a worry when our children go off, but providing your dd is a sensible girl and you know her friends parents, I would say yes. Is it just for two weeks ?
@adaline interesting... I guess I see it as not insisting she be Canadian, just happier to be here and more settled.
If you can afford it I'd let her go but I'm guessing between flights and spending money too, it will pretty expensive
Let her go. It'll be a great experience for her and doesn't have to stop her from settling into Canada - it's only for a week or two! And it sounds as though she and the London girl will be friends for life.
Refusing might have the opposite effect and make her resent the move to Canada.
I would let her go. Not to let her go at this stage is only going to cause resentment and I suspect mean that she will idealise Britain more. It is easy when living abroad to develop rose tinted spectacles about the country you grew up in, Actually visiting will make this less likely to happen.
Although in terms of moving abroad for university, my own observation is that families who move countries to live, are more likely to have children as adults who move abroad for university, work or just adventure. I suspect this is not about being settled or unsettled, but simply that the children have learned that moving abroad is a real option and perfectly doable.
If I am honest I think it is a bit hypocritical to worry about your DD moving abroad when presumably you left behind relatives who love and miss you when you moved abroad.
I guess I see it as not insisting she be Canadian, just happier to be here and more settled.
You can't force her to be happy there. In her view, you took her from her home and everything she's ever known to move somewhere totally alien to her.
Canada might be your home, but it isn't hers.
It never seems to end well moving teenagers across the other side of the world.
Canada might be her home, I think it is unfair to insist it is not.
But settling 8n takes time, and being a teenager is hard anyway. It is a time of learning new social skills, and that is harder with a slightly different culture.
But you do want to avoid her developing a rose tinted view of Britain, which absence can easily do.
Let her go. She might clear off back to the UK on her own in 3 years anyway.
I think 15 is over the age where you can stop her doing things that she reasonably wants to do. It's not like she wants to become a lapdancer or join UKIP. She just wants to go on holiday to see her mate.
Speaking as someone whose parents took her across the world because they preferred not to live in the UK ....
Let her go. Please let her go.
I returned to the UK after living in another country after my parents really required us to integrate totally. Best thing I ever did was to come back home. But I’m left with the sense that I spend my life saying goodbye to people who mean a lot to me.
She will have two countries - she’ll never stop being British but she’ll also have all that Canada can offer. Don’t force her to “become Canadian please. It’ll backfire on you.
If you can manage the money, you really should let her go. This isn't 'looking back to Britain' this is visiting someone who is obviously a really good friend who has already been to see you twice. Long-distance friendships are hard, but they have clearly managed to sustain this one, and I think it would be unkind of you to refuse the visit.
If you don't let her go then her previous life will always be tinged with fond memories,perhaps unrealistically. ADditionally It's also very possible she will find that areas of her new life actually compare very favourably to how her memories of her old life were.
She has several more years to think about university, her ideas will change many times between now and then.
Let her go. It will make her resent Canada more if you dont allow her to continue her old friendships, not help make her feel Canadian! You cannot force these things. I think it's a good thing to do if you can afford it.
Then she will not feel forced to choose against her will. Teenagers can be pretty contrarian... if shes not allowed to go back when presented with the opportunity it very may well make her idealise and pine after London all the more... and make her obstinately refuse to engage with new things.
I think if you don't she will resent Canada more. If she feels she can go back, then she might feel more settled in Canada. Banning London just makes it more appealing, will piss her off and make her resent being in Canada even more.
On balance I'd let her go. You have to accept that irrelevant of your heritage, your daughter is born and bred british, she's left everything she knows, including her friends, and it wasn't her choice. Banning her then from going back lacks any empathy or compassion, and almost guarantees she will move back thr moment she turns 18.
Please do let her go. The message you want to give your daughter is to be at home in the world. She doesn't have to 'choose' Canada or England.
Our 17 year old spent a week in California with my brother and his family. It was the best gift ever. He's going back this summer.
You're holding her back, OP. It's hard to let them go, but we have to give them some rope. She'll go at 18 anyway. Why not do it now?
And ironically, it may be just the thing she needs to 'bond' with her new home. I understand why you don't want to disrupt her transition as she settles into life in Canada, but really, I think the trip will do her the absolute world of good.
If you can afford it and you trust the people she will stay with, then go for it.
you have named one of my biggest fears, that she will want to move abroad after high school / uni
This is unfair on her. Of course it is normal that you want your children near you, but that shouldn't be at the expense of their own happiness. Her growing up to be an independent adult is the actual aim of parenting and certainly shouldn't be one of your biggest fears. Try to reframe it in your mind to be proud of her for having the confidence and skills to be able to do this.
Let her go ❤️♥️
It's all part of life's experiences, she will enjoy, have fun, but come back!! It's all part of growing up unfortunately 😍
Canadian summer holidays are long, my school would let out late June and we’d go back after Labour Day in Sept...so what’s one or two weeks out of 8-9*? She’ll still have lots of time to enjoy the Canadian summer.
Living abroad and leaving friends is hard, as an adult I still struggle from time to time. As a teen it must be that much harder.
* if you can afford it. I personally wouldn’t go broke for this or anything.
I would let her go. She has lots of choices in the future, she may want to go back to UK to Uni.
Let her go if it’s affordable (including her expenses money).
You chose to move to Canada when she was a young teen: she did not. As an adult she may well wish to study/work in the UK: her choice.
If it is going to be a financial hardship & impact on your family & other DCs then I don't think she should go. You will be setting a precedent & what if she & your others all want to go again next summer?
If you can afford it & it's not going to mean no holiday for the rest of the family then let her go.
I also say let her go. By not allowing her, you are making London the forbidden fruit and going to push her away. She will probably start resenting Canada.
It was your decision to uproot her life, so small allowances like this is only fair.
And i think it's great that she has such a close friend who is willing to make such an effort over great distance. Dont let them lose that.
Uprooting her was not her choice. But uprooting all of us was not really my first choice either - I miss London and my life there terribly. On balance I don’t think we made a mistake - we had to move back for family & job reasons - but it has been hard.
I am not being fair to her though as many of you have pointed out.
You are all making very good points so thank you.
Uprooting her was not her choice. But uprooting all of us was not really my first choice either - I miss London and my life there terribly
Maybe this is about you and the fact that her having a wonderful time in London and feeling like she has gone home with exacerbate your homesickness and the fact you didn’t want to love either
If she doesn't go it could be that she resents you for not letting her go and becomes even more set against Canada as home
If you let her go it can go 2 ways (at least)
1 She goes; realises she is out of the loop there and actually prefers Canada.
2 She goes; becomes even more convinced that her home is over there.
Going back to anything is rarely as good as we expect it to be and I suspect she will err towards realising she has moved on BUT resentment and glorifying her old life are almost a given if you don't let her go.
To me that suggests that letting her go is the best option.
I need to consider what is “fair” for DD2 as well. DD1 got to visit her grandparents on her own in February.
Augh too many moving parts. I think I need to sleep on it. The good thing is we don’t have to make a decision this weekend or anything.
As a Brit in canada too, the world these days is a very small place: chances are kids will move abroad for study and or work with the fluidity of the global markets...let her go and figure out what she wants or doesn’t , as if yuh don’t let her now, she shall Defos do it later...
If you're struggling to afford it then I would say no. She needs to understand how expensive it is to fly across the world.
However if you're not too worried about the money then I would probably let her go, but not for the whole of the holidays. It's not particularly far so she doesn't need much recovery time at either end. You're right, she should be spending time with her new friends in Canada as well
Join the discussion
Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Get started »
Please login first.