Why you shouldn't feel guilty about taking a trip without your kids and tips on how to do it!
Leave those kids at home!
How to not feel guilty and how to make it easier
If you've been around here long you know I am very passionate about taking trips as a family no matter what stage of life you're in. But what you may not know is that I'm equally as passionate about taking trips as a couple, without kids. But it never comes easy! Even writing just that statement, I feel the mom guilt inside of me telling me I need to justify that statement. So you can read on to see how I justify it haha. We have a goal as a couple to go on one trip each year alone. We've found that those times that my husband and I spend reconnecting is so crucial to our relationship and help us to be better parents.
Why you shouldn't feel guilty about taking a trip without your kids
- It is good for your kids! Yep you heard me. Putting your kids in new circumstances helps them learn how to be adaptable and how to make decisions without you. This is especially important for kids that are super attached to you. (Although a thousand times harder to leave them).
- It is good for your relationship!! It’s hard connected with your spouse when it feels like everything is centered around your kids. It’s important to have conversations about each other and your interested and that’s a lot easier to do when you’ve gotten some space. One day your kids will be old and out of the house and if you spent all that time talking about your kids, it’s gonna be really awkward and maybe even painful at times getting to know your spouse again. So do yourself a favor and spend time building your relationship now!
- It is good for you!! Fit a little me time in there too! We love going to the spa. My husband is great and going in and just turning your brain off. I am not! But still love the experience and trying to learn how to get into that meditative state of just relaxing and not thinking. But you can find your own ways to take some me time.
- Travel tests your patience and communication - travel is our love language so I’ll be honest, most of the time it comes really easy for us. We’ve figured out who’s good at what with travel planning and have figured out what works. But we definitely still have those moments of frustration when travel doesn’t go according to plan and we’ve learned to get through some stressful situations together.
Ways to make leaving easier
- Find caregivers that they know and love and feel comfortable with. If you don't have this already, find someone well before the trip and go on a date each week for YOU and your kids to get comfortable with the new caregiver.
- Put together a basket of things they love to do that they can do with the caregiver. Give it to your kids right before you’re leaving and they’ll be so excited about the new activities they’ll forget all about you leaving.
- Bring home something little for them. We go pretty simple in this area, but our kids get excited about it and helps distract them from missing us.
- Make sure to have a clear detailed schedule written out for each kid. Bedtime routines, foods they like, activities etc. don’t forget about the things that come second nature to you like the fact that your child wants ice in their water for bedtime or that they like to have a certain book in their bed when they're going to sleep.
- Don’t call right before bedtime (if you have young kids). Your kids will already be tired and missing you and it’s just a disaster waiting to happen. Instead try to call when you know they’re doing something fun so they can share that moment with you and then run off to keep playing.
Be prepared for the after effects of leaving your kids at home
Your kids are going to be even more needy that usual the next few days after getting home. Leaving to go to a dr appt or run to the grocery store will probably come with tears. This is also good for your kids! It’s good for them to see that you keep coming back. Just be patient with them and love on them a little extra!