Family Holidays - a Teenage Viewpoint

Old Mar 15th, 2006, 02:48 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,087
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Family Holidays - a Teenage Viewpoint

With holidays, I think most people tend to forget the bad bits, as time passes the memories take on a rosy glow, which is probably why most trip reports seem idyllic.

The reality, especially when travelling with teens can at times be quite different for some, if not most, of us.

My children (girls of 16 and 14, and 13yo twin boys) and delightful and well-behaved individually, but en masse they do squabble and bicker. I try to maintain some sort of calm, but feel I am fighting a losing battle some of the time! However we do manage to have lots of fun and laughter as well.

My 16 year old daughter writes a monthly column - 'Youth Voice' - in the local newspaper.

This is the article she had published last week - does it ring any bells with anyone?

'ONE MORE FAMILY HOLIDAY - MAYBE'

For me, family holidays mean sunburn, seaweed, me thinking I'm in love with my surfing/snowboarding instructor, and arguments.

And every family holiday I remember has gone that way, well the arguing part!

Since a trip to Venice at Easter last year I vowed I would never go on a family holiday again. This holiday was the last straw.

One of my brothers was in a wheelchair and we had to carry him over the bridges. Wheelchairs and bridges don't go together. They cause arguments.

We also rented an apartment and you could hear each other breathing through the thin walls, cue brothers shouting at each other to 'stop breathing'.

We were allowed to wander through the magical islands by ourselves, however after three days this got really boring. No offence to any Venice lovers. I though it was a truly beautiful place, just not very teenage friendly.

So being bored, me and the siblings resorted to hours of card playing and hide and seek.

In the summer of 2004 we went on a family holiday to Cornwall.

Me and my sister fell out over a pair of flipflops because I'd hidden one of hers in a plant pot. Tensions carried on between us throughout the week and I ended up throwing a tennis racket at her head.

My brothers went a bit mad during an archery lesson and one almost shot the other. They also had lots of fights playing beach cricket because one lost the ball in the sea.

That year was also the year I discovered the bliss of travelling by myself when I went to France to stay with a friend.

Then there is the issue of holiday injury. We have had three broken wrists (two of which were mine), torn ligaments, wasp stings, mosquito bites and friends throwing up in bins.

All of those things lead to moaning, which inevitably leads to arguments.

Family holidays are for the passive and patient.

But I do have some excellent memories to keep and I might go with them one last time - just for the laughs!
julia_t is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 03:50 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,260
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Interesting and thanks for posting.

I am always intrigued by parents who regularly post here asking questions about "Where should we go that our_____children will enjoy?"

I always wonder if they ever ask their children what THEY might like to do or is there this assumption that whatever Mommy and Daddy pick....?
Intrepid1 is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 04:53 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9,232
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
OK, that is hilarious!

You better save that for when she is older, she's going to get a kick out of it. For that matter, save it for when she has to write her college admissions essay.

Your family sounds totally normal. How lucky you've been able to do those trips together.



wliwl is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 05:15 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 257
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Very Funny!
I know whenever we took vacations as a family or now take them with our own it never seems to go according to plan but with the right sense of humour and forgetfulness for the negative (in that minute it was certainly NOT funny but later seems highly amusing) it gives for some wonderful story telling and the photographs bring back memories too.
Family vacations are all about compromise and although families live together and spend each day with one and other a 24-7 vacation will test you patience and sometimes in a that setting parents might even seem vaguely human - like the HAD a life before kids. I have carried many happy memories over the years and let the grudges go - I just hope I can create as happy a childhood with my own brood
P.S> this coming from sunburns, ants in beds, sandy sandwiches, sibling violence and rivalry, midge fests, embarrassment, a caravaan fire, a small flooding, one tornado, two hurricanes, a diaper incident, getting lost, hurt and general mahem. I'd do it all again in a heartbeat! Ahhh, the sweet memories!
mousireid is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 05:20 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9,232
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Our funniest family vacation: We went to the Philadelphia Flower show with some friends who also had small kids. (What were we thinking?!)

There was a HUGE snowstorm and we never left the hotel. On the third day we left and drove the 6 hours home.
wliwl is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 05:25 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,085
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Yes that does sound familiar, could I add..
Whilst in Sydney Australia there was no way we could entice our teenagers out of bed before 10:30 which kissed goodbye to the morning.
Until the UK POP Idol final was shown at 7am. They were able to get up for that !!

So I concluded that Parents, holidays and teenagers are incompatible and a mix to beware of.

Thanks for posting !!

Muck
Mucky is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 07:33 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 174
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
That sounds like any family vacation I went on when I was younger (ie teenager). I always hated being on vacation with my family. Too much tension and arguing.

Now that I am in my late 20s (and I don't live at home), I love going on vacation with my parents. I spent a week in Bavaria with them and my brother (sharing a room with my bro) and it was great. We all got along and had a good time. I really wish I could take more trips with them, but they get more vacation time then I do and go at times I cannot.
StLgrrl is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 08:32 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,085
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
StLgrrl said
"but they get more vacation time then I do and go at times I cannot."

Do you think they are trying to tell you something..lol

;-)

Just kidding !!

Muck

Mucky is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 09:38 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 270
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I say you're all lucky to have this family time. Before I was born, my dad, mom and 3 brothers did all sorts of road trips together. But, one trip, mom and dad were just over each other, and from the stories I hear, mom left dad in one destination and a divorce was filed for upon return home. Divorce is not funny, but this story is such a great example of how family time can go wrong

Based on photos of these trips, I have to share a couple things I noticed from old family slides (yes those little square cardboard things with a film photo in the middle. We must have 15 slide wheels in the family. Anyway. WHat about family vacation photos where there is ALWAYS a sibling crying. Or where the three brothers all have the same shirt on (marriage encounters shirt, olive green sweatshirts with their names ironed on, UCLA Bruins sweatshirts). Ahh yes, my mom dressed them all alike so they were more easily spotted. I admit it's adorable in pics now, but my oldest brother must have despised it!

Oh, and the last trip resembling a family vacay for me was a 16 hour drive to Denver with my father. There were some full blown out fights. Of course we made peace before coming home.

WOW, this is much longer than intended...final thought...as a child, teen or adult, family is family. Families fuss and argue, it's inevitable.
TamaraEden is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 09:49 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 125
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Julia, I envy your daughter, insofar as she has visited places as a teenager that I've not yet been able to visit as an adult! On the other hand, she has a point. When I was a teenager my parents insisted on "family togetherness," and though I now have a wonderful relationship with them and would probably enjoy travelling with them now, I still don't think fondly of those family vacations (when I was a teenager - vacations taken before I hit puberty offer many good memories). Does anybody every think that maybe the teenagers should be left at home (with appropriate supervision, of course)? or that family togetherness is an impossible - and perhaps even hateful - ideal?
Tracey14 is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 10:02 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,087
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you everybody for your kind comments - and it is so good to know it is not just my family that argues!

BTW, I am a single parent so have no support or back up when trying to sort things out, and I do appreciate how lucky I am when things are going well. Venice last year was just unfortunate that one boy injured himself shortly before we left and so we had to take him in a wheelchair. This did affect the trip in a big way, as anyone who has been to Venice may understand!

We have decided separate trips may be the way to go. They have such disparate interests at the moment.

The girls and I have had great fun just us three in Barcelona and two of us went to Dublin. I am hoping to take the boys to Rome in October for a few days. In the summer they do all want to go back down to the big house we have rented in Cornwall for several years, so they can't have had too bad a time in the past! At least it's big enough to avoid each other if needed, and they know the area well so can go out for walks.

I thought my daughter's perspective was amusing. I just hope that in the future she remembers more of the good fun times than the arguments!

julia_t is offline  
Old Mar 15th, 2006, 12:28 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 174
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks Mucky!
StLgrrl is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
nytraveler
Europe
33
Jan 23rd, 2004 06:02 PM
buckeyemom
United States
53
Aug 1st, 2003 08:07 AM
fatgirl
United States
21
Jul 24th, 2003 04:30 PM
Mary
United States
4
Dec 3rd, 2002 01:51 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -