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DS (10) doesn't want to go on Y6 adventure holiday. WWYD?

(29 Posts)
HerBeatitude Mon 07-Sep-09 21:44:05

He came out of school before the summer holidays excitd at the prospect of this school trip - canoeing, fencing etc. As soon as he realised he would be sleeping there and not coming home every night, he went rapidly off the idea.

Now the deadline is looming and I haven't managed to convince him that he would absolutely love it and have a whale of a time. I don't want to force him to go if he really doesn't want to and make him have a miserable time for a week, but I would really like him to have this fab opportunity to do stuff he wouldn't normally be able to - there's no way we could afford this vastly subsidised action trip as a family.

He says he'd miss me and being at home and I've tried to persuade him that it's only 4 nights and he's stayed at his nannie's longer than that, but he's not having it. I've asked him if he's worried aobut who he will share a room with, being forced to do activities he doesn't want to, is he worried about wetting the bed (he only really stopped for good round about Easter) but he reckons none of this is why he doesn't want to go.

WWYD? Is there anything else I should be asking him?

LottaRump Mon 07-Sep-09 21:50:54

i would let him decide. but remind him that once the deadline passes, he won't be able to change his mind. Be clear about that, but don't send him.

Yes, he may enjoy it, but already having the worries that he has may make him have a hideous time.

ScummyMummy Mon 07-Sep-09 21:51:23

Are all his friends going? Could peer pressure be the way forward? It's a hard one, I think, as, though I totally understand the not wanting to make him go thing, chances are he'd love it once he was there. Can you give him the impression that all kids have to go and there isn't really a choice or is it too late for that?

HerBeatitude Mon 07-Sep-09 22:01:03

Oh yes too late forthat
Only 75 places booked for a year group of 120, so they all know it's first come first served.

He said he just has a feeling of being afraid when he thinks about it. I think it's because it's new and different and he's never been away from home (apart from at my mother's and my aunt's) so it's just fear of the unknown. But am wondering if there's anything I might be missing.

Am not sure if his friends are going, he's had a tough time in this school and hasn't had many close friends. It's difficult to ask his teacher who is going as I very much think that that is probably the key as to whether he will be convinced that he will enjoy it!

sundew Mon 07-Sep-09 22:13:45

Could you not just book a place and then let him back out if he decides he really doesn't want to go?

If you are only going to lose a deposit it might be worth it?

EmilyBrownlovesStanley Tue 08-Sep-09 05:05:16

"he's had a tough time in this school"

then I wouldn't make him go, he has the rest of his life to try canoeing and fencing.

kreecherlivesupstairs Tue 08-Sep-09 08:02:06

Good point well made EBLS, I wouldn't make my DD go, if she expressed an interest then obviously I'd get her name down. As it is, she is off next week for three nights. It is non negoitiable and compulsory. Luckily for us she's really looking forward to it.

RubberDuck Tue 08-Sep-09 08:09:45

He'll have other opportunities. If he's having a tough time at school then probably the last thing he wants to do is spend more leisure time with his classmates.

Obviously stress the "last chance" thing as the deadline arrives, but otherwise I wouldn't push. A residential activity in the company of kids you don't get on with would have given me nightmares at the age of 10.

FernieB Tue 08-Sep-09 08:45:03

One of my DD's had a similar issue last school year. She absolutely did not want to go on a trip (in this case, every other child was going). I had a quiet word with the staff and one of the teachers kindly arranged for a girl from the year above to speak to her about the trip. The teacher managed to choose a girl who had also not wanted to go and this girl was able to talk to my DD far more easily than any of us adults. Is it possible your school could arrange this? It worked wonders and my DD had a great time.

fluffles Tue 08-Sep-09 08:47:50

when i was a child i would have said no and then been absolutely devestated when the deadline passed blush

can you book a place and then give him a second deadline when it's more 'real' and his friends are all talking about it and if he still doesn't want to go then drop out and give the place to someone else?

ChopsTheDuck Tue 08-Sep-09 09:16:53

If you are absolutely certain he will like it when he gets there, I'd tell him to go, and if he really hates it you will pick him up. I've used this tactic before, though only when I am certain I won't actually have to pick them! I found they were reasassured by the safety net.

fortyplus Tue 08-Sep-09 09:23:22

' I've asked him if he's worried aobut who he will share a room with, being forced to do activities he doesn't want to, is he worried about wetting the bed '... sounds as though you have sown too many seeds of doubt in his mind already.

My ds1 was a nervous little flower and not a great socialiser apart from a couple of close friends, but he had a whale of a time on his school trip even tho at his school they went right at the start of yr5.

I would go on the camp website with him and just say that he has to trust you that you know he will love it once he's there.

I guarantee that he will - having seen loads of these trips there are always some who cry when the coach leaves but they ALL come back full of it.

It's also a great opportunity to 'bond' with his classmates - if he doesn't go he will spend the rest of yr6 being ostracised even further.

Go for it! smile

FimbleHobbs Tue 08-Sep-09 09:29:17

Do they need any parent helpers on the trip? Would you be able to go for some/all of it?

How long has he been back at school? Maybe he has just had a lovely summer hols and has forgotten that school and mates can also be fun. iyswim. A few days back at school might have him all enthusiastic about it again.

ingles2 Tue 08-Sep-09 09:36:34

I agree with fortyplus. Ds1 is off on his residential next week (will be without a backwards glance but that's another story)
There is only one child not going, a boy in ds' class. He doesn't want to go because he will miss his parents. The sad thing is this boy is a bit of a loner and all ready the other boys are bemused/incredulous he's not going. It will ostracise him further.
In your case it's different as not everyone can go. Have you already booked his place?

OhYouBadBadKitten Tue 08-Sep-09 09:46:24

I agree with fortyplus too. It is normal for kids to get worried (and for others not to get worried!) before a school trip. Children find it hard to see that it will be fine when they get there and settle in. hell sometimes I get reticent about going away just before I go. Sometimes parents need to look beyond the childs immediate feelings and look at the bigger picture. I'm afraid I would tell him that it is too late to back out now and then big up all the positive aspects.

JodieO Tue 08-Sep-09 09:50:18

I wouldn't make him if he doesn't want to, that will just make it harder for him, not easier. I also don't agree that it will be a chance to bond, not if he isn't close with anyone already, I remember school trips such as this and the unpopular people would just be left out of everything even more, while the friends would stick together.

As others have said, he has the rest of his life to do whatever he wants, this trip won't make or break anything.

Overmydeadbody Tue 08-Sep-09 09:50:55

WWID in that situation?

I would let my DS decide. If he didn't want to go I would leave it at that.

I do agree wiuth fortyplus but I also think it is not worth forcing a child to do somethgin they are anxious about doing, even if you know they will potentially enjoy it once they do it.

MissCleverknickers Tue 08-Sep-09 09:59:29

I had the same situation last year when my eldest DD was in Year 6. She initially was excited, then didn't want to go. She was adamant - even though I thought she would really enjoy it. Why force them to do something like that if they really don't want to go, I thought.

Then, when it turned out that most of her friends were going and they all started getting excited and talking about what they would be doing etc, she changed her mind. But I would not have forced her to go...

LissyGlitter Tue 08-Sep-09 10:08:12

I didn't go on mine and I'm glad I didn't- I went on a few residentials at around that age and the bullying was awful, I had no desire to chuck myself off the side of rocks and suchlike and I was scared of heights and couldn't swim or ride a bike (am dyspraxic) so probably would have hated it all anyway!

As long as he is capable of spending time apart from you I wouldn't worry. Obviously if you think he is being clingy that is worrying as it could cause problems if you were taken ill or whatever, but don't focus too much on this particular trip.

branflake81 Tue 08-Sep-09 11:18:22

When I was 10 I was the only child in the whole year not to go on the residential trip to Snowdonia. I refused. I simply did not want to be away from home. At no point did I feel I was missing out, even when they all came back talking about it because I did not want to go at all.

That said, the following year (Y7) the residential trip was compulsory. I dreaded it for weeks (even tried to break my arm so I didn't have to go blush) but in the end went and despite a few tears had a really great time.

I guess it might be a good "life lesson" if he goes, in short.

Uriel Tue 08-Sep-09 11:25:21

Agree with OMDB. Let him decide.

EmilyBrownlovesStanley Tue 08-Sep-09 14:37:57

How can school residential trips be "compulsory" if the parents don't give permission for their children to go?

snorkie Tue 08-Sep-09 15:26:49

ds has a friend who didn't want to go on their year 6 residential. He was the only one in the year not to go. It didn't do him any harm at all that I can see.

bumpsoon Tue 08-Sep-09 18:51:28

Im a terrible mother ,i made mine go even though i knew he wouldnt really enjoy it ,infact he still 5 years later reminds me of a letter he wrote that the teacher refused to send ,begging me to come and get him! he laughs about it now though grin

HerBeatitude Tue 08-Sep-09 21:58:06

hmm, opinion seems almost split down the middle. At least I know I'm not just being dithery and indecisive.

In the end he has to decide but I'm wondering what if anything i can say to reassure him? I don't suppose there is, I think I'm just going to have to accept that he doesn't go... sad

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