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holidays is anyone else going through this

(12 Posts)
lakia Tue 13-Jan-15 09:12:17

I feel like the only one with this problem and I feel so bad for my ds.
He is 14 an only child and I feel as though family holidays days out etc have long gone. He just doesn't have the enthusiasm and never enjoys them with just myself and dh.
I know that if we had of had a larger family it would have been much better but I am finding it so hard now at this age.
We recently had a trip abroad my ds first one ever with relations and despite there been no children of his age in our party he loved it.
He wants to go again but nobody is going this time they are doing their own thing I am so disappointed for him.
My dh will not go abroad we have nobody to go with and I doubt ds will like it with just me and dh anyway.
I am feeling really awful about it all and I am pretty certain I must be the only person with this problem.

3catsandcounting Tue 13-Jan-15 10:00:59

You're definitely not on your own with this problem, and I doubt if you had a larger family things would be much different.
My DCs 15&17 (boy and girl) have become increasingly bored and unenthusiastic about holidays over the past couple of years. Last year we had 10 days abroad, just the 4 of us, the last 2 days staying with our friends and their teens - my 2 were like different kids those 2 days!
I miss the holidays we had when they were young, and happy to be with just us, but they're at the age where they need to break free from us; this doesn't mean they won't come back in a few years and start enjoying our company again.
Could you take a friend along for him (I know, it's not what you want, but it might make the holiday a lot happier for all of you!) Maybe somewhere that has outdoor activities, canoeing, GoApe, tennis, etc. Many of the forest lodges in this country have activities on site. We stayed in a small group of cottages in Wales last Easter, that had lovely walking trails, along the river, and had a huge barn with table tennis, etc. There are plenty around when you google them!

ajandjjmum Tue 13-Jan-15 10:06:17

Choose the holiday so that there's lots to do - for you and your DH too. What about a ski trip, if he's a 'doing' boy? You could drive if your DH won't fly.

DH drives me mad because he doesn't know how to sit still and relax - however our DC are in their early 20s and still want to come away with us, firstly I suspect because we pay, and secondly, because Dad is always up for some fun!

caravanista13 Tue 13-Jan-15 10:07:50

Could he invite a friend on holiday? Mine loved it when friends came too.

MyballsareSandy Tue 13-Jan-15 12:17:27

We are experiencing this for the first time, and I have two DDs, so it isn't just an only child thing. My two are twins, nearly 14, so you'd think they'd be fine keeping each other company.

Me and DH were talking about holidays at the weekend with the DDs, suggesting places to go. DT2 said she didn't want to go if it was 'just us'. She wanted us to invite friends and go in a big group.

I'm afraid I acted rather childishly as I was a bit hurt. I told her that was fine, she could spend a fortnight at her grandparents house as she was too young to be left alone. Then I made a big thing out of looking at more expensive holidays with DT1 "as we could afford to go somewhere better without DT2" blush.

She's now come round to the idea of a holiday in the French Alps, doing Go ape, white water rafting etc. I think you just have to find something that they will enjoy doing at this stage, and will want to come with you, even if it isn't completely your cup of tea.

PeaStalks Tue 13-Jan-15 13:12:01

I second the idea of choosing the holiday based on what they enjoy. My teens still want to come with us but I am under no illusion that that would be the case if the holiday in question was chosen for what DH and I want rather than for them. We love their company and are happy to go along with that as it won't be long before it's just the two of us.

I have a friend with an only. She has always gone to activity based holidays such as Neilson which attract lots of families with teens.
I anticipate taking a friend along for DS2 once DS1 doesn't want to come with us any more.

Ragwort Tue 13-Jan-15 13:28:25

I really agree with you, also have an 'only' child of 14. But I think a lot of it is just being a teenager - I never went on 'family holidays' after the age of about 12.

We tend to do skiing holidays or DS goes off on his own with DH camping, or if you can afford it would your son like a PGL type holiday - they cater for older teens?

I find it very hard, and selfishly I don't really enjoy going on holiday with a grumpy teenager if I am entirely honest blush. It's not so bad if it is just DS and I but I find when it is DH as well there is nothing really that all 3 of us like doing and it all just becomes too much of a compromise sad with none of us really having a great time. Our DS is going on a fabulous school trip which is expensive but he will have a great time.

CalicoBlue Tue 13-Jan-15 21:19:06

My DS won't come on holiday with me and his sister now. Sad, but I know he will be bored and grumpy. This summer I went away with DD on an activity holiday, she says it was the best holiday of her life and she wants to go again this year, but without me.

See if you can find something he likes to do with other kids, like PGL. They do a great variety of activity holidays. They even do ones in France.

OR the two of you could do a Mark Warner, not cheap, holiday. Lots of activities and other teenagers.

What does he want to do?

myotherusernameisbetter Wed 14-Jan-15 10:53:49

I also think it's not just to do with him being an only one - i have 2 boys 13 and 14 who get on very well, but we are still struggling as nothing seems to excite them anymore. DS1 is easy going and will just tag along and do anything but isn't enthusiastic about anything so you never know if its under sufferance - never expresses an opinion on anything. DS2 is very vocal - he basically wants to do the opposite of whatever anyone else wants to do smile he basically just wants to sit and play computer games.

I've now given up. I'm doing all the research and generating all the ideas and everyone else just either not giving any feedback or making faces.

It's no skin of my nose - house is a tip, i'll gladly chuck them all out and clean and tidy for 2 weeks and save myself £4k

I just feel that we don't have many family trips left in us so would like to make it special, life really isn't like it is in the movies is it?

Sonothappeningyet Wed 14-Jan-15 12:26:05

How about finding a option that gives him space but meets your and DH needs too. Like the OP I have a DS who is an only child and 13. He always does PGL at some stage across the summer and loves it making lots of friends. He goes by himself and the staff are good at encouraging bonding with other kids.

I think being active is better than hanging around at home being bored hence using childcare camps. DH would not allow the hang at home on his own option in any case.

We did Mark Warner as a family last summer and that was brilliant too. DS hung with other kids his age and both DH and I did our own (separate) thing during the day. Getting together as a family for most meals. DS ate with the kids in the evening as he'd made such good friends which was his choice. Certainly there were some parents who travelled alone at MW so if your DH is set against going abroad that might be an option.

I also did a cheap cruise with DS without DH. I was prepared to be abandoned but actually DS enjoyed hanging with me, sightseeing a different town each day, chilling out and eating like it was going out of fashion. Depending on your DS might be worth considering.

Good luck.

Northernsoul58 Thu 15-Jan-15 14:03:26

Similar problem - 14yo, only child DS. Does he have any close friends who you could take on day trips (depending on where you live of course) to indulge them in their interests - yes, I know, more self-sacrifice by parents. My DS has had various interests over the years from aquariums, to camping, to zoos, to beach holidays, to posh restaurants (LOL), to military museums... you get the idea.
We have spent many a happy hour in the coffee shop with my DS and his friend trawling through the train, plane, war, weapons, sharks, falcons, etc museums zzzzzz because otherwise he'd be a right pain in the arse grumpy teen.
In the past we have managed to persuade family friends (we have no family other than elderly parents), to rent a cottage in the countryside and let the kids sort themselves out while we do nothing much. We can still get away with this even with grumpy teens because the novelty and the chance to boss around younger kids is still enough to balance the lack of screen time.

lakia Thu 15-Jan-15 19:43:04

Thanks all.
He likes fishing but me and dh haven't got a clue what we are doing so we have previously booked a organised fishing trip which he did like trouble is they can be so expensive.
You have given good suggestions ds does like a crowd and the family aunts, uncles, older cousins etc are good for him but it can be very difficult getting everyone together.
I get so down about it for my ds,s sake and I can't seem to change it.

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