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Son not wanting to go on holiday
7 day cruise, and a flight involved

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17 replies to this topic

#1 L.A.M

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:00 PM

So I am taking my son on a cruise, which he chose last year (about April we booked) from the choice to go to Queensland ..theme parks etc...or a cruise.

Now we leave tomorrow...fly to Sydney from Melb. He has been going balistic in and out for last two weeks saying he doesn't want to go. Crying, and tantrums, and more crying, saying he isn't going I can't make him....

He is 11, 12 in May. He went on a cruise when he was 4 (only time), and has flown numerous times, but last time would have been almost 4 yrs ago now.
He said he didn't choose this (I clarified numerous times) and I should take someone else. Well I would have swapped for someone else had I known that 2 weeks out he was going to carry on like this, but to late.

All up, flights etc, its cost me $800, and spending money to come.

Do I make him go or cut my lossess and go on my own, which isn't alone as we were going with a group...16 plus us two all up, some kids in there too.

He is a really social kid, so the kids club on the boat he'd love, but he keeps saying he wont like it, I say he will once he is there (explain all the safety aspects of planes, boats etc) and he says I can not guarentee he will..sigh!


Make him go (if I can physically get him to go, kicking and screaming no doubt) or not??

#2 DonnaNobelHasBeenS

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:03 PM

Can you sit him down and ask wat exactly is stressing him about going!

#3 Funwith3

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:05 PM

Yeah agree with PP...there has to be a reason he's carrying on like this. Get to the core of the problem and sort that out.

I think if I was in your situation I would do my best to make him go. He will almost 100% love it when it's all underway.

#4 strawberry blondes

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:05 PM

Tough one because im not you nor do i know your parenting style. If it were one of mine i would tell them they were acting like an ungrateful brat and to suck it up.

#5 LambChop

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:31 PM

"Crying, and tantrums, and more crying, saying he isn't going I can't make him...."  Does he suffer from anxiety or anything ?

Just, I wouldn't tolerate this behaviour from my 11 year old with special needs (including anxiety), I'd be shutting it down with a consistent "You are going" and warnings of consequences for poor behaviour (then actual consequences if he persisted).

How dare he ruin your holiday by choosing to behave like this....

#6 Feral-as-Meggs

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:37 PM

Is he worried about sharing a room with you/others for some reason (puberty?).

Have you showed him the ship on the Internet?  

Is there another parent in the group he is close to that could talk to him?

#7 RealityBites

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:39 PM

Is there an adult in the group going that he is afraid of?

#8 Harmonica

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:43 PM

I would be getting to the bottom of it, that is very unusual behaviour for a child about to turn 12.

#9 libbylu

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:44 PM

There must be some underlying reason.....
- fear of being on a boat out to sea
- an uncomfortable recent (since last April?) experience with one of the adults or children in your traveling party - any chance of an abusive adult or bullying child being amongst them that he feels he cant' talk about?
-It sounds pretty odd to me, I would be trying to get to the bottom of it.
Something like 'if you can tell me the real reason why you are worried about going, then we can reassess, but at the moment all I can see is that you are acting like a spoilt brat, and I am not going to waste the ticket so you have to come".

Edited by libbylu, 06 February 2013 - 07:45 PM.

#10 L.A.M

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:52 PM

I have sat down with him and listened to his concerns, several times trying to calm him etc.

He says he is affraid to fly, and affraid to go on the boat...that is all he has articulated. Also that he will miss his family, brother, sister and grandma, mainly grandma probably....(there is a reason the other 2 kids aren't coming...long story, but they are going on another holiday so not missing out all up).

He was talking to one of my friends yesterday who is coming with her girls, though her kids are 16+, about the cruise as she knew I was having issues with him re coming.

All that are coming are females, bar one 5yo boy. He has no issues with any of them.

I have shown him the boat, I have shown him stats on flying.

He is a pretty senstive boy in general.

My daughter 13, last year diagnosed with High Functioning Autism has had some super meltdowns and the likes over the last 2 yrs...and sometimes boundaries have been shifted for her...which I have spoken to DS about. He has probably started to take a feather from her cap re this to a degree.

At the end of the day I am stuffed, really need a break, a rest. I would love nothing more than to spend time with my boy, my middle child, who due to my daughters issues over last 2 yrs especially, has kind of gone without a whole lot of attention...not nil, but she has been my focuses, the need for numerous medical appoinments, assessments....time consuming as a single, FT working mum to 3.

Edited by L.A.M, 06 February 2013 - 07:54 PM.

#11 FeralandStompy

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:53 PM

QUOTE (meggs1 @ 06/02/2013, 08:37 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Is he worried about sharing a room with you/others for some reason (puberty?).

Have you showed him the ship on the Internet?  

Is there another parent in the group he is close to that could talk to him?

Like some other PP I think there is something making him fearful. Look, it could be another adult thst's going, or one of the kids if he's had an argument with them or something. Or maybe he's started having wet dreams etc and is worried about being embarrassed if you're sharing a room with him?  

I only have a 2 year old so can't comment for sure on how I'd parent them in the same circumstances, but at this stage I'd likely be doing a combination of somehow trying to calmly find out what the issue is (not sure how, maybe another trusted adult friend or a teacher or school counsellor?), but making it fairly clear in a pragmatic way that you and he are going.

Good luck and I hope he does start to really enjoy it once you're on the holiday.

#12 Carabosse

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:52 PM

It sound more like fear or developing phobia than a tantrum sad.gif

This may sound crazy but he hasn't watched Life of Pi or something with dramatic ship sinking scenes or air travel scenes between when you booked and now has he?

My eldest DD has a couple of unusual fears that are close to being full blown phobias. It's hard to rationalise when they are panicked. It can be quite a physical reaction when my DD sees the thing she is fearful of even though she can rationalise that there is no real reason to be scared of it. It can be quite exasperating from the outside looking in.

Good luck OP sounds tough. I hope once your trip is underway his fear alleviates and you can both enjoy your holiday.

Edited by Carabosse, 06 February 2013 - 08:53 PM.

#13 Tarantara

Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:06 PM

I'm sorry that you're going tomorrow. It might be nicer to have a couple of days up your sleeve so you could visit your doctor with him just to have a discussion.

I have heaps of anxiety and some phobias, and I have a fear of flying which comes and goes.

Its been gone for a while now, but I would work myself up so much before a work trip that I couldn't sleep, and I would fixate on ways to cancel the trip / meeting without anybody getting annoyed.

For me, my fear of flying came down more to my social phobia - I don't cope well with having to sit right next to a person. I spent one Brisbane to Melbourne flight sobbing into the window, my entire body shoved into it, it was quite absurd and I don't want to know what the poor people next to me were thinking...

The thing that snapped me out of it was one day I was sitting there freaking out, and I realised that a very dear colleage was, at that very minute, on an operating table having a cancer removed, and that she was then facing a gruelling treatment.

I rationalised with myself that I would much rather be having a lovely plane ride than be on an operating table, and I somehow got over the whole thing.

I still have the crippling social phobia but it doesn't manifest in a fear of flying any more.

Anyway, the point of my long and boring anecdote is that your son might be having quite a complicated anxious or phobic response to flying which he hasn't even figured out for himself, let alone been able to articulate to you.

Its not like he can have a nice calming glass of wine sad.gif He is letting his fear of the travel overtake his ability to see enjoyment in the holiday, so I doubt that any amount of trying to get him to see the benefits is going to help.

Instead, I would try to play a bit on his conscience, and tell him that most children would be happy to have such an opportunity, many don't get it, and then help him find some ways of coping with his distress. You might want to try getting him a guided meditation or relaxation track to listen to and focus on, or buy him a game or book that he can focus on. Let him know that its OK to have the scary feelings, and that you want to help him find ways to cope with them.

I might be totally off, but that's what I'd try. I really hope that he can find a way through his fear to go on holiday with you.

#14 brazen

Posted 07 February 2013 - 12:36 AM

sounds like what we went through with ryan before fiji last year - he has autism and anxiety. there's nothing you can do but keep reassuring, stay calm but firm.

ps: we are all keen to try a cruise next but ryan totally loses it over the idea. not sure if we'll push it or not. he has even said he'd rather stay home with his grandparents than go!

sounds like what we went through with ryan before fiji last year - he has autism and anxiety. there's nothing you can do but keep reassuring, stay calm but firm.

ps: we are all keen to try a cruise next but ryan totally loses it over the idea. not sure if we'll push it or not. he has even said he'd rather stay home with his grandparents than go!

#15 Guest_~Karla~_*

Posted 07 February 2013 - 06:29 AM

Cruises scare the beejeesus out of me too, so I can sympathize with your son.  I'm not a good swimmer and the thought of being stranded in the middle of the ocean if the ship sinks scares me senseless. I feel panicky just thinking about it and I'm not going on a cruise!

Poor DH has always wanted to do a luxury cruise. There's just no way I ever will. sad.gif

No suggestions from me, just sympathy for both you and your son.

#16 ~sydblue~

Posted 07 February 2013 - 06:44 AM

I would still make him go. Tell him if he doesn't like it then he never has to go again.

#17 Shellby

Posted 07 February 2013 - 06:54 AM

When we first told our 10yo we were going on a cruise he went into melt down as he was scared that the boat would sink. He does suffer from anxiety. Like your son he wouldn't believe 100% it won't sink because well ships have.

What we did was show him the life boats onboard and explained what happens if the boat was to sink. We explained that it takes over an hour to actually sink and be a issue - would you be able to get to a life boat in that time when it only takes 5 minutes to run from one end to another? (I didn't mention that in a panic its not that easy, otherwise that would have been the end of it.) I showed him the inside on the internet and how safe you are and that they use the life boats to actually tender you to shore when your docked so they must be safe. How another boat would be contacted and pick us up and that even if a boat sinks your very safe. This calmed him down and he then got happy about it.

Turned out he had seen Titania ads from last year (about July) and that was all he could picture in his head happening. I also explained that a ice berg was what caused it to sink and are there any ice bergs at the Great Barrier Reef? He didn't know, so again we went online and he was then happy to read that no there are not any ice bergs.

So maybe instead of telling him his fear is really not founded, explain to him even if his fear happens how safe it still is.

#18 Holidayromp

Posted 07 February 2013 - 07:02 AM

You will probably be on your way but I would just leave him behind.  You would have got care for the other two just leave him back.  You need a holiday and you don't need to deal with that.  He will soon learn that he cannot get things his way.

Next time I would not let a child choose my holiday.  I find that if get the kids to choose what they want to do just before it happens they don't want to do it yada yada.  It is a waste of time.

Chances are he is regretting his choice and kicking up a stink about it.

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