26 answers

How to Respond to Grandparents Who Want to Take 1 Child on Vacation

I love my inlaws and have always made an effort to get along with them because I love my husband and they are his family. That said, they do not supervise the children well and they have a very carefree attitude about safety and rules that concerns me greatly. They ignore or contradict simple rules that are meant to protect the childrens' safety, health and well being. They insist on having our 3 kids for long weekends and have repeatedly hinted that they want to keep them at their house for a week. They live 15 minutes away and we see them alot so I am not sure why all this alone time with the kids is necessary, I'm happy to visit and go on outings with them, but they insist on having the kids alone without us around. They act like I'm weird becuase when they had kids they were happy to have a break whenever they coold and let their parents take all the kids for 2 weeks or more at a time. What they don't seemt to understand is that I am not looking for a break from my children- I had kids becuase I wanted to love, care for, and spend time with them. That is why I homeschool and stay home to be with them-- we belong to a homeschool group that meets once a week and the kids are involved in lots of sports, etc so its not like they are sheltered or anything like that. But the main problem is they do not respect our wishes with the kids-- they would let the kids play outside (even the 3 yr old) by themselves without supervision (no fence, busy neighborhood) and watch innapropriate real life crime dramas etc with the kids in the room watching. We have been saving as a family for 2 years to take a vacation to disney world, which we still cannot afford becuase my husband was laid off for several months. But it is our ultimate goal to do it in a year or so, and we took our son when he was 5. Now my inlaws want to take the 9 year old on a weeklong beach vacation and are acting like if i dont agree, they will convince my husband. They also said that in the future they would take the girls one at a time (now 5 and 3). First off, i dont think i could its a good idea to have hm so far away for a whole week. Also, it doesnt seem fair when the girls so desperately want to go to disney and big brother is getting to go to florida for a week and they will have to wait another year. I think families should stick together and vacations are family affairs. I also think it sets a bad precedence and cant imagine letting them take one of the girls out of state ever. At least the 9 year old I can tell him, dont go outside or swimming without one of the grandparents and he will probably obey. Help! Am I being unreasonable? what would you do or say???

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thank you to everyone for your input- It is good to know I am not the only mom on the block who feels like protecting our kids is priority number one. My husband and I have talked it over and decided to tell the grandparents, thank you and it will not work for us (thank you to the mom who suggested that tactic) we really feel that children need to travel with their parents. I would certainly welcome the grandparents to travel together with us as we have done in the past, but simply are not comfortable with the children travelling without their father and I. So far, since we discussed and made our decision, the topic has not been brought up again. They may have just been "testing the waters" and I am glad that (so far) they have not tried to divide and conquer with my husband. But the good news is that if/when it does come up again, we will be ready to give a loving but firm no and stand as a united front. They really are loving parents and grandparents overall, I just think there is a combination of a slight lack in boundaries, and a niavete about the world as it has changed with regard to children's safety since their kids were little. Thank you everyone for your feedback and support, it was greatly appreciated!

Featured Answers

If you don't think it's a good idea, just tell them, "We don't think that's a good idea, but thanks anyway." Repeat as necessary.

7 moms found this helpful

No, No, and No. I would not let them take only one kid. I would be uncomfortable letting them take my kids at all...

3 moms found this helpful

You are not unreasonable.
You don't want to know what I'd say - because I have no feelings of guilt for ruffling feathers of people who try to walk all over me.
It's wouldn't be polite or politically correct and they would hate me and I wouldn't care.
The real problem here is you 'like' people who totally disrespect you.
I don't like people who try undermine my authority.
What they are doing is not nice or likable.
They are not going to respect you until you demand it, and if they refuse - who needs them?
And hell would freeze over 7 times before I'd let my child(ren) vacation with people like that.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

You just do what YOU want.
These are YOUR kids.
You do NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT, have to give in to them and their demands that your kids, stay with them.

They are not you.
You are not them.
Personally, I would not do that.

2nd: you have to TRUST them, and their level of ability, to supervise and care for your kids, SMARTLY.
If you do not trust them, then no.

3rd; THEY do not make the rules. YOU do. It is your kids.

4th: they are manipulating you, the kids, and your Husband. ALL to be against you.

5th: Your Husband, should not allow this. His 1st priority, should be his Wife, and kids. Not pleasing them or his parents, Bully behavior.

6th: THEY do not decide, the vacations of your children.

7th: Your HUSBAND, has to, consult with you about it and you both make a decision. NOT him going along with his parents. These are not their kids.

The problem here is: they are taking advantage of you and your Husband's ability to "provide" for your kids.
It is not up to them, what to do with your kids.
The problem is not that they 'offered' to take your kids on vacation and "oh that is so generous of them." NO. The problem is, they are commandeering your life and your kids life. By passing you and making you marginal, in making decisions for your children.
THAT is the problem, here.

AND that is a bad example, for your kids to see. The more your In-Laws put you in a weaker position and a marginal position, the more your children will see your In-Laws as being above you... and you, their MOM... only disregarded.
I hope, your Husband REALIZES that.
A child, should NOT see their MOM.... treated as such.
It is very disrespectful, of your In-Laws.
They are really posing a bad role-model, for your kids.

Sorry, but your In-Laws irk me.
And I am in a direct mood today.

all the best,
Susan

14 moms found this helpful

If you don't think it's a good idea, just tell them, "We don't think that's a good idea, but thanks anyway." Repeat as necessary.

7 moms found this helpful

No, No, and No. I would not let them take only one kid. I would be uncomfortable letting them take my kids at all...

3 moms found this helpful

I love it when I get to say this :)....

Ditto Susan. 100%

3 moms found this helpful

I am a firm believer that YOU are in charge of your children. I have had to deal with family who incessantly whined about wanting to take the baby for a weekend. Same family couldn't figure out how to change a diaper or buckle a carseat. AND didn't take the time to come to our house to learn routines and get to know the baby. I said NO. I am like you, I had my children to enjoy them, however that part of the family dumped their kids almost every weekend. When I decide I want a break, I'll look in to things, but otherwise leave it be, please! Even went to far as to say it was a shame that I breastfed because they didn't get to keep the baby. I could have exploded from that one. But, to those people it is more about calling themselves grandparents than BEING such.

Until you are comfortable with some arrangement, the answer just has to be no. They are your kids and that is that. Good luck, because I know it's difficult.

2 moms found this helpful

I DITTO ditto Riley and Susan 100%
Susan you should be in a direct mood more often.

B. k

2 moms found this helpful

Typically, I would say, let them take the kids! Not only does it provide you with a rest you maynot realize you need, and romantic weekend for you and husband... but it will likely be very fun for the children to do a weekend sleepover, even if it's just one night. My in-laws have taken our 5 year old for a short week vacation, and he loves sleepovers at grandmas.

BUT, when you said they let the 3 year old play outside without their supervision, that set off a red flag. That would be where I would place my concern, so ultimately the answer would be "No".

I would calmly and nicely talk to them about your concerns and let them know the true reason you are saying no for now. I'm sure they will ultimately work on these things and when the children are older and you trust them a little better it would be great fun.

1 mom found this helpful

Because I'm the MOMMY that's why! If you are not comfortable then don't do it. You need to have a united front with your husband on this point and make him tell his parents NO if they start to work on him.

1 mom found this helpful

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