To think family days out are mis-sold and wish to complain?

(246 Posts)
JustAnotherManicMunchie Wed 04-Aug-21 20:52:49

Planned a lovely day out yesterday for my DC aged 10, 9 and 3 months. DC1 has ASD so takes some encouragement to get out of the house.

I spent ages planning and packing a picnic and headed off backpack in hand with visions of sunshine and the DC and I skipping through the meadows…

The reality was the DC bickered all the way to the venue, by the time we got there, DC1 was in a mood and dragging his sorry face along the ground ….

DC2 was fed up of DC1 and his endless rules.

Picked the baby up out of her car seat to find she’d had an explosive nappy all over her car seat . Cleaned up the baby whilst simultaneously trying to stop WW3 breaking out between the older two.

We carried on with our day and thought never mind, even Mary Poppins herself has blips … we can still skip in the meadows hand in hand al la perfect family style ….

We get to the playground at the venue and the DC are still bickering; before I can get to them , DC1 wallops DC2 under the wooden bridge like a troll clubbing the Billy Goats shock . The pair of them scrapping whilst the world looks on like they’re at a paid for title fight.

So embarrassed, I hauled them out of the park and we went for a walk. I’d paid £35 to get in, we were not leaving until we had at least some fake happy family photos ….

DC2 then tripped over a tree and skinned his knees , cue screaming like an injured wild animal. We left.

Today …. Is another day I thought…. Again , bundled them in the car and I promised myself today would be better and true family day out.

Twenty minutes in to the journey, I was screeching like a deranged lunatic over the pair of them ducking fighting and arguing again. I told them they were ruining family days out and I was so sick of their selfish bickering. I really lost my shit and told them they were making family life miserable and I wanted to go home and forget the day out ….

We went on to the seaside and had a fabulous time grin … before getting in the car and enduring a meltdown for the whole journey home.

I think I’ve been mis sold family days out and I’d like a refund on all the family days out we’ve ever had which follow the exact same pattern ….

Can anyone point me in the right direction? grin


OP’s posts: |
Aroundtheworldin80moves Wed 04-Aug-21 20:56:27

Put the 10yo in the front of the car. Give both headphones and personal music. Sounds like its the car causing the aggro.

Dizzywizz Wed 04-Aug-21 20:58:36

Sounds like our family days @JustAnotherManicMunchie!

Marriedtothesilverfox Wed 04-Aug-21 21:00:10


Chasingsquirrels Wed 04-Aug-21 21:00:20

Oh god, feeling the pain.

We took 8yo & 5yo on a day trip to London years ago. 8yo was fine, 5yo whined about EVERYTHING. Got home and 5yo said he'd had the BEST DAY EVER!
Just a shame the rest of us had had to endure it with him.

SouthOfFrance Wed 04-Aug-21 21:03:38

I'm waiting for the smug people to turn up and say their family days out are never like this and that you are doing it all wrong.

And then the people who say 'see, this is why I never do days out with the children'.

Hope you've got a massive glass of wine ready for after they've gone to bed.

HerRoyalNotness Wed 04-Aug-21 21:05:31

Sounds familiar. Took my 3 on a 2700 mile road trip this summer. For some reason they all wanted to sit in the back together and fight. Had to put one in the front as punishment.


DoubleTweenQueen Wed 04-Aug-21 21:06:20

Sounds perfectly standard. It’s why we age so badly gin

phishy Wed 04-Aug-21 21:06:49

Eek I remember being taken on a day trip to London by dad as a kid and all of us siblings being misery guts because it was raining. My poor dad, the photos are funny now, but I feel bad for how miserable we acted. He’s passed away now but he really tried to have days out.

JustAnotherManicMunchie Wed 04-Aug-21 21:09:51

I feel terribly guilty now about losing my temper. I ranted on and on about their bickering (it’s constant!) . The DC got upset. I did apologise and give them big hugs but explained that I’m losing my temper because it’s so frustrating to listen to!

OP’s posts: |
user1494055864 Wed 04-Aug-21 21:15:26

No OP, you're doing it all wrong. We have a full blown family argument before we leave the house, or at the very least before we've pulled off the drive! wink
I have been known to break down and cry on holiday, leave a holiday a day early, and indeed CANCEL a holiday, due to my 2 dds incessant bickering ! They are teens now. Still bickering, but I just walk off and leave them to it.

APurpleSquirrel Wed 04-Aug-21 21:15:57

I'm with you - took DC (6 & 3) out last week to a local NT place. Did one of the little mazes, walked through the kitchen garden butterfly spotting, got to a play area, kids had a play. Some other families arrived so packed up for a walk.
Except DS (3) didn't want to walk. Wanted to be carried. I already had a backpack on, no carrier & he's too big now to carry an distance, so told him no carry.
He stopped dead in the path, arms crossed, sulky face.
I carried on walking. DD went back to him, trying to coax him along. I turned around & DS, seeing me looking, did a stroppy about-face promptly slipped over & face planted into the ground.
He starts crying, DD screams 'Mummy! There's blood!!'
Go over & DS has managed to split his lower lip & graze his nose.
We'd been there for 20 fucking minutes!!!!

garlictwist Wed 04-Aug-21 21:16:20

I can remember my dad yelling "you two are ruining my bloody life!" as my sister and I battered each other to the death at every opportunity. Yanbu. Sadly I think this is normal.

DoubleTweenQueen Wed 04-Aug-21 21:16:59

Mum Guilt - again, perfectly standard. It’s why we age so badly gin cake

What you need to do is get yourself on Insta (or FB) & take photos at the odd millisecond moment everyone’s quiet/eating ice-cream, or the sun comes out, and post those pictures, then you can look back and sigh about what a perfect day out you had. Will drive your friends nuts.

Rabbitheadlights Wed 04-Aug-21 21:18:18

Following to find out where the refunds come from too .....

Michaelangelo467 Wed 04-Aug-21 21:20:10

It sounds like your eldest is causing the issues (with the 2nd responding) - as someone previously said, put him at the front of the car or ds 2 if it’s considered a treat to be at the front, that would solve the issues in the car. Then a team talk before they’re allowed to leave the car re expectations and consequences.

itsgettingwierd Wed 04-Aug-21 21:20:50

Actually - it's good for kids to see us lose our chit sometimes when we are doing nice stuff for them and they behave like that. Also they need to know how dangerous it is when you are trying to drive and they are fighting.

Sometimes it's just habit and what they know.

Glad the beach bit actually turned out ok.

My advice is set up rules before you leave.
Eg. No fighting in car earns an ice cream.

Also agree eldest in front and individual music or games to watch.

Livingintheclouds Wed 04-Aug-21 21:21:22

I took my daughter, about 9 or 10, on a weekend to NY at Christmas. We saw the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular, visited iconic Saks Fifth Ave, did a hair raising rickshaw ride through Times Sq. What did my daughter like doing best? Building a gingerbread house with the boy we stayed with, which she could have done back home.
You do your best to plan a lovely day out and it’s guaranteed not to go the way you want, but that’s not to say you should stop trying, but maybe lower your happy family expectations!

thebear1 Wed 04-Aug-21 21:23:18

Am joining the refund line. The more money I spend the worse the day seems to go unless it is something very specific that the dc want to do like Harry Potter studios.

CatNamedEaster Wed 04-Aug-21 21:23:22

We've had days like this before and only have the one DS, whinging, injuries, packed lunch dropped all over the ground. Fuck it was painful.
The only solution I have is to have much lower expectations and don't imagine an ideal path for the day to take, so that the day can generally be classed as a success most times. We don't do big expensive days to theme parks so that helps that we don't feel pressure to get our money's worth all day.

If we are going to a museum, we accept that the ratio of exhibits:eating in a basement picnic area with 25 other families will probably be 1:5 at best.

When we went to London last summer, DS reported that his favourite bit was the little playground we killed half an hour in before getting the train home but actually we all enjoyed the whole day.

Oh and I bought a wheely shopping trolley. Best thing ever for a day out. You basically become a magician because you can fit every conceivable snack, puzzle book, change of clothes and fave soft toy to help get through the daysmile.

GertrudePerkinsPaperyThing Wed 04-Aug-21 21:23:28

I feel your pain in that I find the bickering the worst thing. Neither of mind has ASD I must say, so might make a difference to wearing I’m coming from. But yes, I find bickering so self indulgent, and so ungrateful! It’s like they’re saying “I’m going to insist on the absolute letter of what I think I’m due here, on principle, and not give a shit about the person who has planned and paid for this day out”.

GertrudePerkinsPaperyThing Wed 04-Aug-21 21:24:56

I realise I sounds awful there as I actually do enjoy our days out blush

Progress2019 Wed 04-Aug-21 21:25:55

Mine are grown up now, but I remember taking them up to London on the train one day, for a wonderful trip involving the zoo, natural history museum, meeting my brother for lunch, ending with a trip to Hamleys with money my parents gave me.

I thought it went well

At parents evening I got to look through younger daughters school work, I think she was about 7. It wasn’t quite the glowing account of ‘what I did at half term’ I was expecting. Just these words - My mummy made us go to London to stroke a beggars dog.

A beggar?? It wasn’t Dickensian London. It was a busker with a dog wearing a hanky around his neck.

MrsHuntGeneNotJeremyObviously Wed 04-Aug-21 21:26:33

I sometimes take teenage DD out on her own and she can still start an argument grin
I remember fondly the car journey days with my 3 young boys who would scream blue murder at a millimetre encroachment by one of their brothers onto 'their' seat!

Family days out are often more trouble than they're worth.

WimpoleHat Wed 04-Aug-21 21:26:34


Oh god, feeling the pain.

We took 8yo & 5yo on a day trip to London years ago. 8yo was fine, 5yo whined about EVERYTHING. Got home and 5yo said he'd had the BEST DAY EVER!
Just a shame the rest of us had had to endure it with him.

Sorry - I know this isn’t meant to be funny, but can’t stop chuckling at this…. Kids are so bloody contrary sometimes, aren’t they?

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in