Parenting after 35

Ever had a WTH was I thinking moment?

I decided this year to finally go see my family in WA.  My brother and sister both live up there and I haven't seen my sister and her family in 3 years (never met my youngest niece) and my brother and his family has never met my kids at all and I haven't seen my SIL and nieces since my wedding 5 years ago.  They are/were all a little tight on money so travel for them was out of the question. 

In a fit of familial responsibility, I booked us for 10 days, flying home on the 11th.  We are going to my brother's first, then on the 4th day all driving down to my sister's, brother and family leave to go back either on the 5th or 6th day and we visit with my sister and her family then.  My parents are flying in and meeting us at my sister's. 

Good news:  we are staying in hotels so will have some space. 

Bad news:  they are going to drive me crazy!  I can already tell from the various phone calls that this is going to be bad.  There is my liberal bigot brother and my conservative bigot father (I mean bigot in the sense of intolerance of other's way of life and opinions, not racial).  My sister who makes her DH do EVERYTHING.  My parents who sit like lumps on a log and only engage with the kids if it doesn't require them to move.  My brother and his wife who scream and yell and fight in front of everyone.  My sister who yells and is loud.  Did I mention that screaming and yelling makes my DD cry? 

Awesome.  I almost want to suck up the exorbitant change fees but know that once this is over, I won't have to repeat the experience for another 5 years.  Instead I'm planning lots of sight-seeing trips like to Pike's Market, zoo, children's museum to reduce the level of interaction.

DD -- 5YO
DS -- 3YO

Re: Ever had a WTH was I thinking moment?

  • Just keep telling yourself "Its only 10 days, its only 10 days." 

    I can see the kids needing to go back to the hotel room for naps VERY often. 

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  • Yes, I recommend you do a lot of hiking and sight-seeing. Also, it's great that you are staying in hotels and not at their houses. I am confident that you will survive!

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  • Well, after this trip you should be all set for the next 5 years or so before you go back for another fix, LOL. Hotel reservations are usually changeable, so you could always say you need to cut the visit short due to a work-issue, DH-family emergency, etc and then go to a nearby town & do the sightseeing things you mentioned in your post. No one here will tell Wink
  • aglennaglenn member

    Yeah, we had a similar family trip last summer that is still causing residual drama to this day.  I will spare you the details, but it was a good reminder of why I moved across the country!  :)

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  • Thank goodness you booked a hotel!  Try to plan some other activities that you can do with your family to get some breathing room.
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  • steverstever member
    Grrr... family, eh. Stick to the running around and sight seeing :)
  • Good thinking on the hotel room.  You have an excuse to leave the situation!!  And yeah, it's only 10 days.   You can stomach most anything if you know there's an end in sight.
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  • We are going in August. There's so much to do there. Noah loved the monorail, space needle and he really loved EMP. There are also so many great places to eat, you can spend time eating around Seattle. The locks are really cool too, Noah loves seeing the fish up close. Sean is from there and we never get bored. Now I wish we could stay in a hotel when we go there.......


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  • 10 days, lots of day trips, and then you're free and clear for the next few years!
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  • Nice of you to make the effort to see your family.   I sometimes feel bad that I don't make the effort to see my sister who lives in Oregon, but I don't do it for a lot of the reasons you just mentioned.  It would cost a fortune to fly the whole family to see her and we would have a miserable time.  I think that you are a big person to take it on.  I guess my only advice is try to manage how many meals you share together - that is usually when family blow ups happen.  Good luck. 
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