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View Full Version : Whould you be responsible for someone else's child?


Princess_Belle
02-25-2008, 04:02 PM
Hi everyone! I'm having a major dilemma. We (DH & me) were planning on taking my 18 yr old DSIL to WDW this May. She has invited her cousin to go along. The cousin is 17, So I am responsible for her. I have never even babysat for more than an hour at a time. i know that she is almost an adult, but I dont like the idea of them roaming all over with out us. Now the two girls are mad because I am not going to let them do this. I know when I went to WDW when I was 17, we weren't allowed to leave the park we were in because we were there with out our Parents (it was a chorus trip). If my DSIL's cousin gets hurt that make me and my husband the responsible party. I am only 21 and he is 23. I dont think it is a good idea to even bring the cousin since she is underage. What should I do. I am going to worry the time we are there because of this. If you were me would you take this risk? Would you be responsible for a someone elses child before you have any children of your own? BTW I dont even have siblings so I have never been responsible for a child at all! Someone help?

wildeoscar
02-25-2008, 04:04 PM
nope... it has difficult situation written all over it.

Mo-Yo
02-25-2008, 04:12 PM
It's your vacation, and you should spend it as you wish...so don't bring your SIL and her cousin if you don't want.

Now if it were me, if SIL was coming, I'd likely bring the cousin along to keep SIL busy and happy. I'd set ground rules ahead of time that include calling cousin's parents, etc if there is a problem.

To me, 17 is more than old enough to be in the parks alone. IN some states that's old enough to marry and it's just a year off from being old enough for the military. So its not really babysitting. But again its your vacation and you call the shots. It can be difficult to do with some in-law relationships. I hope it works out for you.

pigletforever
02-25-2008, 04:18 PM
In 2006 we went with another family. Our son was 17 and their daughter was 17. It was great. They could go off by themselves for EMH when everyone else was too tired after dinner. We did require they have their cell phones in case of emergency and that they show up for meals that we had ADR's for. It was also understood ahead of time that there would be mandatory family time that they had to participate in. We gave and they gave and everyone had an awesome time. It was great for them because they had someone their own age to hang out with. 17 is old enough to be in the parks with a friend. After all they will be in college shortly. I would be fine with it but it is your vacation and you make the decisions.

letthewookiewin
02-25-2008, 04:25 PM
It really depends if I would do it or not. Did the 18yr old ask before she invited the 17 yr old, or did she just inform you after the fact that she invited the 17 yr old to go along? If she didn't ask, I wouldn 't take them b/c I wouldn't be able to trust that they would not hop to another park we were not in. If she did ask, I would take them. However, I would make a strict rule that they HAD to stay in the same park you were in. If they didn't, home is just a plane away and you would not hesitate to send them right back home.
With that being said, I do not know the 18yr old & 17 yr old. If you are having concerns already, I would listen to that "mommy instinct" and just tell them no.

Dawn68PA
02-25-2008, 04:36 PM
We were going to take my DDs boyfriend on our next trip (he's unable to go now) and what we had was a notarized paper that pretty much stated that if he was hurt I could sign for medical care and such and that he had permission from his parents to travel with us during said dates. That way everything was covered. You can find samples online, that's where I found mine and the notary said it was perfect.

We stated in advance that no one was going alone in the parks. It was still a family trip. Now if DH & I wanted to go to bed early & the kids still had energy then fine...they could go for a little while. At 17, I would have no worries about that. We always have loads of fun together so it really wasn't an issue.

Mickeefan
02-25-2008, 04:43 PM
We were going to take my DDs boyfriend on our next trip (he's unable to go now) and what we had was a notarized paper that pretty much stated that if he was hurt I could sign for medical care and such and that he had permission from his parents to travel with us during said dates. That way everything was covered. You can find samples online, that's where I found mine and the notary said it was perfect.

We stated in advance that no one was going alone in the parks. It was still a family trip. Now if DH & I wanted to go to bed early & the kids still had energy then fine...they could go for a little while. At 17, I would have no worries about that. We always have loads of fun together so it really wasn't an issue.

My situation is a little different because of the ages of the children. I'm a single woman (never been married, no children). I've taken all 3 of my friend's daughters to Disney World each when they were 12. The first one was 10 years ago. I would have been 33 at that time. Of course, there was no question about any of the girl's being on their own in the parks, we were always together. I did, however, leave them in a shop while I rode a ride they did not wish to ride or I waited for them while they rode a ride I did not wish to ride. I never experienced so much as a skinned knee. I did have the proper identification for each girl and I also had an insurance card and a notarized paper stating that I had permission to have said child with me in Florida. I've done it before and I'd do it again, so problem.

kimluvswdw
02-25-2008, 04:44 PM
My kids take their friends all the time. They are too busy having fun to get into trouble. I am sure everything will be fine.

Princess_Belle
02-25-2008, 04:45 PM
Ive noticed that most of you already have children of your own. But if you didnt have any children, would you as willing to take a someone elses child. That is my main concern. Since I was only 17 a few years ago, I dont really know what its like being responsible for someone younger than me.

We told my MIL to ask the cousins parents if they thought they could afford to give her money to go. After MIL asked she was supposed to get back with us. Me and DH were going to talk it over, come to a decision and tell DSIL if we though it was a good idea or not. WELL last night MIL asked the parents and then asked the cousin to go. Before consulting with us! So now I'm in a position to either have to take on a huge responsibility or tell someone the cousin I'm Sorry you are uninvited. Neither of which I want to do. Im just really confused.

NMAmy
02-25-2008, 04:45 PM
I've been doing it for the last 3 years. We always take a friend along for dd to hang out with.

Last year, they were both 16 and I allowed them to go to the parks on their own. DD is extremely familiar with WDW transportation and has been many times.

DD is 17 now. She can drive. She goes many places without me by her side. Heck, she flies across country without me.

Now, if you're not comfortable with the situation, then just say no. I wouldn't want to spend my whole vacation on pins and needles worrying, if I were you. But just a word of warning--if you do take the cousin with you, they will pester you unmercifully to let them go off on their own.

I'm fairly immune to pestering but you haven't had much practice yet. ;)

I hope you have a great trip however it works out for you.

linzbear
02-25-2008, 04:57 PM
I would not do it for a few reasons:

1. You are only 4 years older than she is - she would not see you as an authority figure, and it would only strain your relationship with your SIL, because SIL will also not see you as an authority figure, and is much closer to your cousin.
2. Not sure of the laws, but how old do you have to be in order to check a 17 year old into a hotel? I know there has been discussion in the past, and an 18 year old cannot be the 'adult' in a room with a 17 year old. You should check this out too (heck, it would make it very easy for you to say no, anyway! Just say "sorry, I found out that you have to be 25 years old in order to check underage teenagers into a hotel room in florida - you have to bring a friend that is 18")

pearlieq
02-25-2008, 05:01 PM
DH and I (no kids) took my godkids to WDW when they were 17 and 14. I was 24 and DH was 27 at the time. It was our idea and we enjoyed the trip thoroughly, but I knew the kids very well and was pretty experienced with kids.

In your situation, I would recommend against taking the cousin, for several reasons. First and foremost, it's your vacation and you deserve to be able to relax and enjoy it. With the 2 kids it will be much more babysitting and much less just hanging out and enjoying each other.

It was out of line for your SIL to extend an invitation to her cousin without clearing it with you first. I can't believe they have the nerve to get upset--you didn't invite the cousin, and your SIL is getting a trip to WDW, for pity's sake! I would just lay out your decision and if she's still going to be bratty about it, she can go pound sand.

Finally, I think you're a bit young to take both girls, especially since you don't have much experience with kids. I imagine you still even have a friend or two close to their age. Unfortunately, you won't be able to deal with them as friends, but at the person "in charge". I suspect that might be awkward and kind of a drag for you.

This is your trip, you get to say who goes along. If I were you I would stand firm and tell them no.

savannahjean85
02-25-2008, 05:04 PM
I am only 22 myself but as my graduation gift when I was 17 my best friend and I got to go to WDW. My mom took us but was sick so she stayed at the hotel. I do feel 17 and 18 is old enough to go to the parks by themselves (esp. if you are staying on the property.) With that being said you need a game plan everyone needs to have the cell phones at all times, there needs to be a game plan each day knowing what park is being attended (if it differs from yours). Now if you do not feel that they are not mature enough then say," sorry you can not do the trip this go around." But for the most part I think the parents are trusting their children as young adults, ask the parents if they feel the child can handle it. You are not that much older than them, level with them tell them you take this seriously and the only way you will take them is if they behave. But at 17 and 18 you are not really babysitting, teenagers at that age are normally allowed to leave the house without their parents and go places and are trusted to act properly. I mean esp at WDW I am not saying there isn't crime there but they do a very go job on trying to prevent it as much as possible with their security. They have very nice, safe transportation areas and transportation they provide between the parks. I understand when going down on school trip them not letting 17 year olds leave the park but that is because when you are with a whole group of other teenagers things get out of hand compared to two teenagers by themselves. Anywho best of lucky with you trip, remember it is about having a great time so do what is best for you and DH.

P.S. I don't have kids but if I did feel comfortable with the teenagers I was taking, then yes I would not have a problem with that responsiblity. I would want to two also because they could use the buddy system and keep each other company. I wanted to take future DSIL (16) last time but she had school.

MickeyNicki
02-25-2008, 05:22 PM
Depending on the child yes. I took my sisters 2 girls with us (age 3 and 10) for their first trip ever and DH and I never had them for one night let alone a 4 night trip. It was fantastic but I think I was over cautious with them and it freaked me out a bit. By the end of day 2 I could unclench a bit and relax....

I would do it again in a heartbeat.

BabyPiglet
02-25-2008, 05:45 PM
Since you're all so close in age, why don't you think of it as a trip with friends. Because at 17 she definitely doesn't need to be babysat. :)

WDSearcher
02-25-2008, 06:08 PM
What does your husband think of all this? It's his sister, right? And his cousin? If he has no qualms about being in charge of his sister and cousin and he understands that he will be responsible for their welfare, then I think it's something you should consider. You're looking at this as if it's 100% on you to take care of these girls. It's not -- it's something you and your husband need to decide on TOGETHER. If he doesn't want to deal it, have HIM uninvite the cousin.

You seem to be the only one worrying about something that you and your DH should be deciding on together, KWIM?

:earsboy:

born for this
02-25-2008, 06:17 PM
i understand your situation and the fact that youve never been responsible for kids (heck - you are only my age haha) , but to be honest with you..if the cousin's parents are okay with her being alone in the parks..i would definitely consider it.

after i graduated from college, me (18 at the time) and my best friend (17 at the time) went ALONE from ohio to spend a week at Disney World. To be honest, I think the two of them are definitely old enough to be alone in the parks - especially if you are only a park/resort/call away. i can understand why they would be upset about not being trusted to be alone. i can also understand why she wants to bring her cousin since without her she may feel like the third wheel...even though you might not feel like its that kind of situation at all. just discuss this with her parents. if your DH isnt worried about it, i wouldnt worry about it either.

set some ground rules with them, since it is your vacation too and go have fun! :) hope everything works out for you!

EDIT: I must have missed your second post.. if she was invited without your consent, and after you seriously consider it with your DH and still dont want to take her - do not feel bad about saying "Sorry, not this time." After all, the main point here is that it is YOUR vacation.

Kate and Pete
02-25-2008, 06:26 PM
Ive noticed that most of you already have children of your own. But if you didnt have any children, would you as willing to take a someone elses child. That is my main concern. Since I was only 17 a few years ago, I dont really know what its like being responsible for someone younger than me.

We told my MIL to ask the cousins parents if they thought they could afford to give her money to go. After MIL asked she was supposed to get back with us. Me and DH were going to talk it over, come to a decision and tell DSIL if we though it was a good idea or not. WELL last night MIL asked the parents and then asked the cousin to go. Before consulting with us! So now I'm in a position to either have to take on a huge responsibility or tell someone the cousin I'm Sorry you are uninvited. Neither of which I want to do. Im just really confused.

I think, if you decide to take the cousin, you should get a written note from the parents stating that they understand that the girls will be at the parks and might be unsupervised. Go over the rules with the girls (they have to be at the same park as you, they must call you every 2 hours, whatever makes you feel comfortable...)

I don't have kids, either, but I do teach high school - and am traveling to CA with a ton of them in April - they will have some unsupervised time - so I know how you're feeling!

DisneyTigers
02-25-2008, 06:37 PM
When I was only 22 years old, I was a first year High School English teacher in South Carolina. Another teacher and I took a group of juniors down to WDW for a special trip...they had to work and pay for it themselves, it was open to anyone, but it ended up being about 12 or so kids. They were FINE. We stayed off property (no value resorts 13 years ago), but once we were at MK, for instance, they were allowed to go to EPCOT via monorail, as long as we knew where they were and who they were with. Now, in the days of cell phones, it would be even easier to do. I say if you have a long hard talk w/ this girl's parents, and you are comfortable after that, you take the friend along with you...if SIL is already going, like someone said, it will give you and DH somewhat of a private vacation, also.

On another note, I went to WDW with a friend when I was only 16. We stayed at GF and POLY, but she and I went EVERYWHERE unchaperoned...we just knew when and where to meet her parents for dinner. It was great!

Of course, if you dont' trust SIL, that's another situation, but if she's a good kid, I say you all go and have fun!!

gatorgirl2
02-25-2008, 06:43 PM
My sons have taken friends many times--as early as when they were eight years old. I'm taking four boys skiing in Vermont for Spring Break and I'm much more nervous about that than taking four boys to Disney in May.

We often break off for two hours at a time, but always establish a meeting place. I have left them at Blizzard Beach for the day too with no worries, but I've never let them take a bus or monorail alone--

12kizuna
02-25-2008, 06:47 PM
Other posters please be nice to me in saying this, but I am finding myself extremely surprised at the amount of people who are trying to convince you to do this.

Don't.

My reasons are similar to that of pearlieq's. I notice a LOT of people who responded that you should do it did so by stating that they would be comfortable with such a situation, or think that it's fine that a 17 and an 18-year old can run around together. Of course, I think it's fine for people that age to explore Disney alone also, but that is not the question at hand here.

The fact of the matter is that you aren't much older than these girls... very close in age, in fact, and you're being put in charge of a minor who you did not invite, and no one ever asked your permission to be put in this situation. They will most likely not see you as an authority figure (as has already been pointed out), and perhaps not exactly on a friend level either. It's not about making rules on when to meet you, the whole purpose of the trip was for you and your DH to take her. If she is going to put up attitude (and it's only been a few years since I was that age myself) and be so rude as to invite someone without your consent, then I say don't take either of them and enjoy the time with your DH without having to worry.

Since I'm pretty sure that wasn't the intent of the trip, don't be pressured or bullied into taking both girls. I suggest keeping your foot down, and explain to them your feelings. Say that you didn't appreciate plans being made without asking you first, and any other fears that you have associated with it. "Maybe next time" is always another answer.

Final line: Do what YOU are comfortable with. Obviously, you are not comfortable, and no good outcome will come from that. :cool1:

PS: I don't think I could understand from your last post, but would her family be able to pay for her? If not, that even reinforces it. Even if they can, I find it still rude of them to not help you say no to their daughter themselves (unless she's been telling them that you said yes this whole time)..

EDIT: By bullying and pressuring, I didn't mean by ANYONE on the boards, I meant by the girls themselves by being upset about the matter... I just reread and realized how that might have sounded wrong

dougsmom98
02-25-2008, 07:37 PM
17 year olds can definitely hang out at the parks by themselves. I would definitely do it. You DSIL will have a buddy and won't feel like the odd man out. At the high school where I teach, they take the softball team to Disney every other year and the girls (some as young as 15 years old) go off in groups by themselves without chaperones. Unless you think your DSIL won't follow the rules, I don't see any problem with it.

my3disneygirls
02-25-2008, 07:37 PM
Other posters please be nice to me in saying this, but I am finding myself extremely surprised at the amount of people who are trying to convince you to do this.

Don't.

My reasons are similar to that of pearlieq's. I notice a LOT of people who responded that you should do it did so by stating that they would be comfortable with such a situation, or think that it's fine that a 17 and an 18-year old can run around together. Of course, I think it's fine for people that age to explore Disney alone also, but that is not the question at hand here.

The fact of the matter is that you aren't much older than these girls... very close in age, in fact, and you're being put in charge of a minor who you did not invite, and no one ever asked your permission to be put in this situation. They will most likely not see you as an authority figure (as has already been pointed out), and perhaps not exactly on a friend level either. It's not about making rules on when to meet you, the whole purpose of the trip was for you and your DH to take her. If she is going to put up attitude (and it's only been a few years since I was that age myself) and be so rude as to invite someone without your consent, then I say don't take either of them and enjoy the time with your DH without having to worry.

Since I'm pretty sure that wasn't the intent of the trip, don't be pressured or bullied into taking both girls. I suggest keeping your foot down, and explain to them your feelings. Say that you didn't appreciate plans being made without asking you first, and any other fears that you have associated with it. "Maybe next time" is always another answer.

Final line: Do what YOU are comfortable with. Obviously, you are not comfortable, and no good outcome will come from that. :cool1:

PS: I don't think I could understand from your last post, but would her family be able to pay for her? If not, that even reinforces it. Even if they can, I find it still rude of them to not help you say no to their daughter themselves (unless she's been telling them that you said yes this whole time)..

EDIT: By bullying and pressuring, I didn't mean by ANYONE on the boards, I meant by the girls themselves by being upset about the matter... I just reread and realized how that might have sounded wrong

You took the words out of my mouth! It seems to me that OP feels very uncomfortable with the idea of bringing the cousin and that's enough for me to say DON'T DO IT!

From my experience whenever I've done something I did want to I always regretted it. Your gut is trying to tell you something, so you should go with your instincts. This is you trip you should be enjoying the time leading up to your trip, not worrying about the added responsibility of bringing this girl along.

Mo-Yo
02-25-2008, 07:41 PM
I agree the poster should do what she feels comfortable with. It is, after all, her (and her husband's) vacation.

But her questions were: would you be responsible for someone else's child? And would you bring the cousin along?

I don't think anyone is trying to talk her into anything ...just answering her question, and giving insight.

If I were SIL. I might feel like the third wheel on a tricycle, accompanying my brother and his wife to the scene of their honeymoon. So I understand a bit why she might want a peer to hang out with. (Although, she should have asked first).

Also, the age difference between a 17 and 18 year old is really nonexistent, and the ages between the poster and her SIL and cousin are 3 and 4 years - really not a babysitting situation. It seems what it comes down to is that the poster really doesn't want the extra stowaway(s) on her vacation...

Personally, I wouldn't want to bring my SIL along either, but that isn't the question she asked.
Like I said, in-law situations can be tricky. I'd probably come up with a decision with my husband that worked for both of us...then let him deal with it.

Good Luck...sounds like a tough situation.

UrsulasShadow
02-25-2008, 07:53 PM
It's making you uncomfortable to be put in that position. I think that speaks volumes. I agree with the others that say to put your foot down in this instance. While a 17 year old does NOT need a babysitter, they DO need a responsible adult to report back to, and you do not want to be that responsible adult. I can't blame you at all. If it were your younger sibling or close relative, that's one thing, but this teen is a complete unknown, who will not likely recognize you as an authority figure. Go with your gut. Your instincts are good.

Amyg
02-25-2008, 08:15 PM
I too was married when I was 21 and although I felt that I was pretty mature at that age I would not have wanted the responsibility of "looking out" for an under-aged teen no matter if he/she was only a month away from being legal.

Although I feel that WDW is fairly safe, you just never know and I would not be comfortable with that. Since you ask that question, you must be very comfortable so I would go with your gut feelings rather than taking it on then being on the trip always wondering where they are, what are they doing, are they okay. You will have to decide how comfortable you will be and how it will affect your trip. It would be unfortunate if your DSIL is unhappy about your decision but it IS your decision and only you & DH can decide what is right and comfortable for the two of you.

DLBDS
02-25-2008, 08:35 PM
It really depends on whether they're familiar with WDW. If they're noobs then you might want to keep a 'leash' on them (or choose to leave them at home). If they've been before and are familiar with Disney transportation and the layout of the parks, I wouldn't worry about them. I would only worry if they wanted to head over to Pleasure Island....after dark. I don't think I would allow that. Not on MY watch anyway.

mouseman41
02-25-2008, 08:55 PM
I think I would discuss your concerns with the cousins parents. Everyone sit down and have a discussion and lay out some ground rules and if the parents are ok with everything then go and have a great time!!!

Tinkerbell63
02-25-2008, 09:04 PM
What would bother me about this whole situation would be that they're already upset that they won't be allowed to have their freedom at WDW. That's a red flag right there. :scratchin

Tinkerbell63
02-25-2008, 09:07 PM
Oh, I forgot to mention, don't take anyone else with you and enjoy the trip with your husband. Being responsible for someone else when you don't have to will probably create problems between you and your DH.

JennyDrake
02-25-2008, 09:09 PM
You obviously don't want to do this--so don't I am childless by choice and I have taken as many as three kids at once that belonged to other people. A 17 year old is MORE than capacble of getting themselves around the parks and taking WDW transportation. They drive a car don't they? If this is going to ruin your vacation, don't do it.

jdcthree
02-25-2008, 09:18 PM
If you are uncomfortable with it, don't do it! It's not worth the stress. I wouldn't want to do it, either. Don't feel bad about doing what you feel is right on your vacation.:)

TotalSnowWhite
02-25-2008, 09:19 PM
I thought about the third wheel scenario that PP pointed out. It would be nice for her (and you and your husband) if she could hang out with her cousin while you two had dinner or something equally romantic.

Buuuut...

Did you say your mother in law talked to the parents and invited the cousin? If you decide you can't handle the responsibility, she needs to be the one to break the news since she's the one who extended the (unapproved) invitation.


To answer your other questions: I'm 24 and am taking my five year old niece. So, yes, I would take responsibility for someone else's child and would take the cousin in your situation.

Good luck!!

Amyg
02-25-2008, 09:29 PM
To answer your other questions: I'm 24 and am taking my five year old niece. So, yes, I would take responsibility for someone else's child and would take the cousin in your situation.

Good luck!!

While at age 21 I wouldn't want to be responsible for a 17 year old, a five year old would be with you ALL the time and would not want to roam around their own. I too would have taken a five to nine year old. :)

Atchley
02-25-2008, 09:31 PM
You are only 21. Do you not remember just three years ago and what you would have felt like if someone would have treated you that away at 17? I graduated High School at 17 and had already enrolled in my first semester in college.
Bottom line is--you don't want to do it. It is your vacation. It doesn't sound like you want to take SIL or the cousin. You want your vacation to be yours and yours alone. (I can relate) Don't make yourself or the others miserable by taking them along.

EMom
02-25-2008, 10:45 PM
Hmmmmm.....

At 12 and 13, my parents took a friend and me to Six Flags and turned us loose all day without supervision. We were fine. At that same age, a friend's parents took 4 of us to AstroWorld and let the 4 of us loose all day. Also fine. That was us, however. I might add that one of "us" would have gone hog wild at every opportunity had the others not been there to rein her in. :rotfl2:

As I read this thread, I thought about something that happened my senior year of high school. The legal drinking age was 18. I must have been 17 because it was icy that night....maybe New Year's....and my birthday would have been after that. My friend (also a senior and 17) was driving us to a big dance/party, so she was not going to drink. There wasn't going to be any booze at the party anyway and it was too icy to drive away from the dance to get any. Texans don't like to drive on ice, not even for the promise of liquor. :scared:

A few hours before we left, the mother of a freshman girl we went to school with, called my friend and begged her to drive said freshman and her freshman friend to the party with us. We didn't want to haul two freshman girls with us, as we had cool reputations to think of :lmao: and they would be the youngest things there, but her mother was buddies with my friend's mother and she was guilted into saying yes. The two girls had stellar good girl reps, so we figured we'd let them ride with us, go our separate ways at the dance and meet them when it was time to go home.

Maybe an hour or two into the dance, we get an alert to go check out what's happening in the bathroom. We go in and one of them is in her underwear and is washing her clothes in the sink, because she has drunkenly barfed on them. :crazy2: The other is sprawled on the floor, sans barf, but tres drunk. They must have been working on it since we had arrived. We later found out they'd brought the booze from home. :rolleyes2 There was NO sobering those two up. Not a chance. And when midnight passed, they refused to go home with us. It has been so many years that I cannot clearly remember HOW they got home, but I do know we saw to it they got home.

The kicker is, we knew that if the parents blew a gasket, WE would get blamed for "not taking care of those girls." Crap, all we wanted to do was dance with hot guys! :cool1: Not babysit Lindsay and Paris. We would have never expected it out of those two goody-goodies.

So maybe the 17 year old (whom you really don't even want to come) will act just fine. Or maybe she will be a thorn in your side for the whole trip and you'll curse the day you ever let her accompany you, as you mentally add up how much this misery is costing you and wondering WHY you ever left your driveway. :sad:

Your gut seems to be telling you that taking her is more trouble than it's worth. Why are you doubting it? :confused3 If she and the 18 y.o. merely whine and complain that you're not letting them do this or that, etc., that would be enough to work my one last nerve. Who needs it? Let your oh-so-willing MIL take the girls! :rotfl:

Tink415
02-25-2008, 10:47 PM
Oh relatives! Sometimes they can be so annoying, but still lovable!

I've taken nieces, nephews and my older daughters friends to WDW many times. Depending on the child or teen, it can be no problem at all or it can be a real pain. You really need to know the person involved at least a little. Sounds like the cousin is a stranger to you?

I started allowing my daughter go to different park or DD at age 15 with her 17 yr old boyfriend, but they are both dependable and trustworthy, have cell phones and know how to get around using the transportation (look at signs, read maps, ask employees for directions, etc.)

Speaking as a parent of a teen, I would allow my 17 year old to go to WDW with a 23 year old cousin, his wife, and an 18 year cousin as long as I was reasonably sure there would be no drink or drugs offered to my teen and a shared room would be for sleeping only. I wouldn't expect the 23 and 21 year old adults to be with my teen the entire time, just to set a good example and help my teen if she needed help. And I would get my 'reasonable sure' feeling by talking directly about my expectations to all involved :)

Sounds like maybe your SIL and MIL got excited and rushed into inviting the the cousin? Only you can decide if they were rude or excited. I can really understand why your SIL wants her cousin to come, most rides are for 2, etc. If all that's planned is good clean fun it shouldn't be a problem for them to have some freedom. You and your husband should talk to the cousins parents. If you're still uncomfortable, or SIL and MIL were rude, maybe you can change the plan for the 4 of you to go when everyone is over 18?

Good luck!

TotalSnowWhite
02-25-2008, 10:59 PM
While at age 21 I wouldn't want to be responsible for a 17 year old, a five year old would be with you ALL the time and would not want to roam around their own. I too would have taken a five to nine year old. :)

I don't know...sometimes my niece has the attitude of a 17 year old! :rotfl:

I've also taken my cousin (now 16) on an annual roadtrip since the death of her mother a few years back. A couple times she brought our other cousin (a year younger, so she's now 15). It really depends on the girls. I've never had a problem with my cousins. They're very responsible. As an older teen (17, 18, 19), I invited them to spend as much time as possible with me, as we live about 2 hours apart. I've always been very comfortable with kids of any age. If you're not...you're not. Don't compromise your vacation to satisfy others.

IHEARTNY
02-25-2008, 11:14 PM
I've gone countless years (or it seems countless) as a teenager where we were allowed to go out on our own. Some of the rules we had to face:

1. Carry cell phones on us at all times and check-in every 2 hours, if we were about to go on a ride conflicting with the every 2 hours, just call before.
2. No park switching unless you let one of the adults know.
3. For the most part, the entire party (of 6-19, varied each trip) would meet somewhere for lunch or dinner, usually dinner.
4. Everyone had to have a buddy and someone in the pair had to be at least 16.

There were other rules but a 17 and 18 year old, they're old enough to do a lot worse things so I wouldn't sweat it.

***If you really want to keep a watchful eye but still let them be on their own, when I went to DL on a field trip one year, they let us roam about the park doing whatever they just took our park tickets so we couldn't leave and come back so they at least knew we were in the same park as them. At 15, we got freedom and they got peace...

again, cell phones are key for communication!

shadybabysmom
02-25-2008, 11:25 PM
Oh no this just got met thinking about my own trip. I am taking My 2 DS ages 5 and 15 and my DS friend age 15 I am planning to attend PPP with my younger son and had told DS and friend they could go to Hollywood Studios during day and then make their own way back to resort in evening and wait for me to return after the party. They also will both have their cell phones with them. I was thinking this was going to be no problem as they are very mature and responsible young men and we do live in a huge city so I figured they would be smart enough to take the buses from in WDW with no problem. I also was believing WDW had awesome security and I would not have to be too concerned about them too much but now after reading a few post I feel I may not be doing the right thing here. Any thoughts????

Princess_Belle
02-25-2008, 11:32 PM
Well my DH and I talked and we decided to set some rules. This is what we came up with

Answer the Phone if we Call
You must be in the same park as us
Dont leave a park to go back to the room with out telling us
Meet us 45 prior to any dinner reservation
Meet us 1 hour prior to any night time show
We all leave the parks at night together
Stay with us at DTD (Ive heard bad things about younger people being alone here)

Apparently they thought we were going to put them on a leash and not let them get 2 ft away. We have added the cousin to the reservation and ADR's so everything is set. Also this trip is not for me & my husband it was a trip for my DSIL as a graduation gift. Now we just have to figure how we are all gonna live in a POP room for 6 nights. And figure out how we are going to get everything there in our car. Our trunk is very small and the girls refuse to ship anything. Meaning my husband and i will have to ship all our stuff :rolleyes2

UrsulasShadow
02-25-2008, 11:34 PM
Oh no this just got met thinking about my own trip. I am taking My 2 DS ages 5 and 15 and my DS friend age 15 I am planning to attend PPP with my younger son and had told DS and friend they could go to Hollywood Studios during day and then make their own way back to resort in evening and wait for me to return after the party. They also will both have their cell phones with them. I was thinking this was going to be no problem as they are very mature and responsible young men and we do live in a huge city so I figured they would be smart enough to take the buses from in WDW with no problem. I also was believing WDW had awesome security and I would not have to be too concerned about them too much but now after reading a few post I feel I may not be doing the right thing here. Any thoughts????

Your situation is entirely different than the OP. You are the parent to one of the children. You have experience and confidence that your children will behave to your standards. You know the children in question, and how they are likely to react to situations. There is a larger age difference between you and the children you are caring for. Your instinct tells you that your charges will be fine, and you should follow that.

WDSearcher
02-26-2008, 08:16 AM
Now we just have to figure how we are all gonna live in a POP room for 6 nights. And figure out how we are going to get everything there in our car. Our trunk is very small and the girls refuse to ship anything. Meaning my husband and i will have to ship all our stuff :rolleyes2
You have to SHIP your stuff? Why? That I don't get at all. Everyone gets one bag, and maybe you put something up on the roof in a carry-all. You're only going for a week, and it's not like you're going to need dress-up clothes, suits or stuff like that.

Then again ... I don't understand over-packers. I never bring more than one suitcase. 13 days in China ... one suitcase. 10 days in California ... one suitcase. I'd ship home souvenirs and stuff I bought, but I never needed to ship clothes. :confused3

:earsboy:

CarolA
02-26-2008, 08:24 AM
Personally I think you are over reacting... if the child is 17 next year she will be a legal adult. If you can't trust her to walk around Disney what's going to happen when she goes to college? I gave 17 year olds in Paris France more freedom then you are giving them in Disney and NONE of them were related to me!

This whole thing sounds bad. You are taking an 18 year old and trying to play "parent" when you are 21? Personally your "rules" are very overbearing for people this age.... Would you have wanted to be treated this way at 18? And using your "School" trip as your basis is probably not that sound.

The girls want to take too much stuff etc.. This needs to become a team effort not a dictatorship lead by you and DH! Show the girls the trunk. Show them thier half, then be quite!!! Quit telling them things like "we will ship our stuff" No you won't. If they overpack they can cram thier bodies in the backseat with their valuable junke. Trust me they will learn. All of my Girl Scouts did. I refused to assist them with thier stuff. I treated them as adults responsible for thier decisions. Some of them learned to regret them. LOL!

I can see this trip report now.... DISASTER!

Personally I think you should step back and either deal with these two as ADULTS and not as children. Set out your expectations. Sit down with the 17 year old's parents and lay down the ground rules based on a combination of your confidence and the parent's confidence in their daugther. Your current rules read just like the ones I had for 14 years on a trip to Disney! Yoare treating them like children and it will backfire. (What are you going to do when they don't show up ONE hour in advance...scream at them?)


If you can't deal with it, just withdraw the invitation.

MareSINY
02-26-2008, 08:36 AM
If you are hesitant I don't think you should do it, this is your vacation and if you aren't going to be comfortable you wont enjoy your vacation.

I've taken my nieces (separate trips) to Disney for long weekends (Fri - Mon). I was nervous when I did it the first time, my niece was almost 5 and I just wasn't sure how it was going to go. It went great, we had a super time and so last September I brought my other niece who was 4 at the time. We also had a great time. Now mind you, I am older than you by 15 years.

Several years ago I brought a co-workers daughter with me to Italy, she was 16 at the time. I was nervous about traveling there alone (my sister's husband was in the Navy so I was going to visit and stay with them) and my friend thought it would be a great experience for her daughter. Well, she spent most of the time there in her room listening to Nsync (this was 6 yrs ago. LOL) She never wanted to go out and see the sights, and when we were out she slept in the car most of the time. Then we missed our connecting flight going home and were stuck in Rome for two days. She cried, wanted to go home, etc. etc. We laughed about it, but at times it was very stressful being responsible for someone else's kid in a foreign country that we couldn't seem to get out of. So I can totally understand your apprehension on doing this.

I say go with your gut!

AmyinKY
02-26-2008, 08:49 AM
I have not read all of the post here. My advise, sit down with MIL, SIL, cousin, cousin's parents and your DH. Ask questions such as, have you been to WDW before, where else have you been before on vacation (this 17ys may have travelled with a band or chorus group before and thinks nothing of trips with rules, etc., do you have food allergies, etc. Find out exactly what the girls want to do on this vacation. They may be very willing to stay in the same park with you, want to eat meals with you, etc.

Before saying a flat out no, and with this also being you inlaws, I would have a sit down meeting and discuss what you are willing to compromise on and what your rules are. You may very well be on the same page and not even know it. Also, bring an estimated budget with you so the money side of things is out in the open as well.

Amy

aristocats_lover
02-26-2008, 08:49 AM
OP, My DH and I are the same age as you and yours. Last summer we took his sister (13 at the time) with us on a short trip (we live two hours away, but we stayed the night) when she came to visit us for the week from MI. I can not stress enough how important the notarized medical authorization form is. Also, the insurance cards for both girls, and any pertinent allergy or medication information (that includes contacts, etc for eye injuries). If something were to happen, you don't need to waste possible precious time.

That being said, Anna never left our sight, but she was 13. She was perfectly happy spending time with us. I personally don't think it's neccesary to bring the cousin on the level that she should have fun with her brother and you, but I know it's sometimes hard for them to see it that way. If we were to take DH's other sister (who's just a year younger than me) I wouldn't let her out of my sight even though she is over 18 just because that's the kind of person she is (always in trouble, and I don't mean little things). Even though someone is 18, or even over 18, if you're taking them there, YOU are responsible. Maybe not legally, but to his family, it's your job to keep them safe.

I wholeheartedly second the no DTD without you. Other than that, if you can trust the girls to follow the rules, I would say go ahead with it. But give them the expectation that they will only be treated as adults if the act like adults, including being trustworthy. After that, all bets are off.

labdogs42
02-26-2008, 09:07 AM
Well my DH and I talked and we decided to set some rules. This is what we came up with

Answer the Phone if we Call
You must be in the same park as us
Dont leave a park to go back to the room with out telling us
Meet us 45 prior to any dinner reservation
Meet us 1 hour prior to any night time show
We all leave the parks at night together
Stay with us at DTD (Ive heard bad things about younger people being alone here)

Apparently they thought we were going to put them on a leash and not let them get 2 ft away. We have added the cousin to the reservation and ADR's so everything is set. Also this trip is not for me & my husband it was a trip for my DSIL as a graduation gift. Now we just have to figure how we are all gonna live in a POP room for 6 nights. And figure out how we are going to get everything there in our car. Our trunk is very small and the girls refuse to ship anything. Meaning my husband and i will have to ship all our stuff :rolleyes2

Those rules seem a little overboard to me. Yes, I am a parent and yes, I have been to Disney as a college student. These "kids" are adults. Treat them as such and they will act as such. Just stop and ask yourself why? to each rule. Why do they need to meet you 45 minutes before an ADR? Because you don't trust they will make it in time? That's setting everyone up for failure. Just tell them what time you plan to arrive for the ADR (15 minutes ahead is standard) and expect them then. If they don't show, eat without them. Don't pay for the meal they need to eat instead. I think you are going a little overboard with the whole "I'm responsible for these "kids" thing". They are only a few years younger than you! Don't try to be their parents. This trip can be a blast for all of you if you just relax.

Mo-Yo
02-26-2008, 11:23 AM
No offense, but when I suggested ground rules, I wasn’t thinking edicts.

Perhaps a more friendly, less authoritarian approach would serve you…and the girls…better.


More like -
“Girls, I am really excited about this trip, and I think we can all have a great time together. But, as you probably realize, I am a bit nervous about this “being in charge” thing. I want to have fun, and I want you to have fun…but I also want to make sure that we are all on the same page so that we all return home happy and healthy – with great memories of the trip.

Le me tell you how I picture the trip – I picture us all staying together most of the time. We really want this trip to be a way to celebrate SIL’s graduation together. I made some great ADR’s that I think we will all enjoy. Here they are….(blah, blah). I hope you guys want to do that with us.

Obviously, spending 24-7 together for six days is a bit much, and we might not always want to do the same things, so if you guys want to branch off, I understand. I’ll worry, but I understand, and I’m okay with that as long as we make a plan where I know where you are (ie, what park, at the pool, at the hotel) and we are in touch by cell phone pretty regularly. Me and DH might like a little time alone, as well.

This is a vacation, and I don’t want you to feel like you are in prison, but I don’t want to spend six days worrying either. Please don’t put me in a position where I have to act like a mother…or a camp counselor.

Obviously, I expect that you guys follow Disney rules…and the law (ie. drinking, drugs, etc) and I know you are good kids and don’t want to get involved in that stuff, anyway, but if we have any problems like that, your mom’s have agreed to come get you/let us send you home/etc. But I really don’t expect it to come to that. We’re all adults here, and I know we can work together. Don’t you think?


Tell me about how you picture the trip….Does anything I said not make sense? Can you anticipate any problems?

Oh, One more thing. One small bag per customer. If you want to bring more, you need to sit with on your lap or ship it. Pack light, it’s hot, and you can do wash at the hotel if you want.

Great…let’s go have fun"

Princess_Belle
02-26-2008, 12:07 PM
This whole thing sounds bad. You are taking an 18 year old and trying to play "parent" when you are 21? Personally your "rules" are very overbearing for people this age.... Would you have wanted to be treated this way at 18? And using your "School" trip as your basis is probably not that sound.

The girls want to take too much stuff etc.. This needs to become a team effort not a dictatorship lead by you and DH! Show the girls the trunk. Show them thier half, then be quite!!! Quit telling them things like "we will ship our stuff" No you won't. If they overpack they can cram thier bodies in the backseat with their valuable junke. Trust me they will learn. All of my Girl Scouts did. I refused to assist them with thier stuff. I treated them as adults responsible for thier decisions. Some of them learned to regret them. LOL!

I can see this trip report now.... DISASTER!

Personally I think you should step back and either deal with these two as ADULTS and not as children. Set out your expectations. Sit down with the 17 year old's parents and lay down the ground rules based on a combination of your confidence and the parent's confidence in their daugther. Your current rules read just like the ones I had for 14 years on a trip to Disney! Yoare treating them like children and it will backfire. (What are you going to do when they don't show up ONE hour in advance...scream at them?)

If you can't deal with it, just withdraw the invitation.

I had all these same rules at disney when I was 17. Did I complain! No I was just glad I got to go. I expect them to follow these simple rules. As I did when I was 17! I have reasons as to why I want to MEET them (Not them come to us) before we go to dinner or a nighttime show. This was the same rule that the DSIL had last Sept. I dont want the coming back to the room 2 hours after we do bc they were last last people in line at the bus stop. Also This is the cousins first ever trip to Disney World. She is not familiar with anything about the parks. If she and the 18 yr old get separated while leaving the park. I can imagine the fussing that would cause. It will be easier if we all leave together. I am not going to make them ship their stuff. But if I allowed them to bring everything they want to bring, then my husband and I would have to ship both of our suitcases. And thats not fair to us! I am giving them an option of shipping anything that is not that important or stopping at a grocery store once we get in Florida (things like body wash). These are the way the rules will stay. I'm standing firm and so is my husband. I am willing to take them to Disney! That is enough reason for me as to why they need to follow some simple rules.

LAH LAH
02-26-2008, 12:07 PM
I personaly don't think the OP's rules/guidelines are too strict. She is in charge...if she tells them to sit in a corner till she comes back she is well with in her rights (not that you would...just making a point) The OP has to do what SHE feels comfortable doing...

I hope you have a wonderful trip!!!!

Ktharee
02-26-2008, 12:38 PM
My three friends and I (all girls) all went to WDW for 4 nights for our high school graduation. Plenty old enough. My parents needed convincing, but I had never gotten into any trouble so they folded. I think you need to set your rules. Yes, you aren't THAT much older than them, but they aren't going without your say, so I guess you are in control. Don't buy park hoppers. This way you are all in the same park. Make sure cell phones are always on. Get a waiver from both sets of parents. Set meeting points and times. Not too strict, but check in at least twice a day or mandate you eat together. These aren't "kids". I understand that yes you are ultimately responsible for their well being, but you needn't worry they are going to "talk to strangers" as they should know better. If you feel comfortable that they are responsible, respectful young adults and will adhere to the ground rules, go for it. If not, don't.

HunnyPots
02-26-2008, 01:24 PM
I think you'll be fine as long as you don't go too far with the authoritarian attitude. If you do, these girls will likely see how far they can push you. They are plenty old enough to be on their own in the parks, and they know that, which is why they are mad at you ;).

Cell phones are wonderful things! Just make sure everyone has theirs on, call if you need something and let them go.

As far as being "responsible for someone else's child", I think you're worrying needlessly. Have her parents sign (and have notarized) a medical release form with insurance info in case of an accident or illness. If you're worrying about her getting into some kind of trouble, she's 17 and would be held accountable for herself.

The extra guest may turn out to be a blessing in disguise. You SIL will have a buddy so she doesn't feel lkie the odd one out and you and your husband will have some time to enjoy your trip just the two of you. See? Everyone's happy!

Mo-Yo
02-26-2008, 01:41 PM
I personaly don't think the OP's rules/guidelines are too strict. She is in charge...if she tells them to sit in a corner till she comes back she is well with in her rights (not that you would...just making a point) The OP has to do what SHE feels comfortable doing...

I hope you have a wonderful trip!!!!

Actually, I think having a wonderful trip would be difficult if op has an attitude that she could tell the girls to sit in a corner (even if she wouldn't).

These are young adults for Pete's Sake, and if her attitude is to control every aspect of the girl's behavior for six days straight then I agree with the the OP, the trip report will be a DISASTER!!!

And if that's OP's attitude, driven by fear or responsibility or annoyance at having an uninvited guest (None of which I fault her for), then I think all parties will be much happier if the trip gets cancelled.

I think maybe, it would do OP good to talk to Cousin's mother and see what her expectations are. If she thinks she has a "babysitter" then forget it, don't bring her. If she thinks her daughter a responsible young adult is accompanying her cousins on a trip as more or less an equal (with ground rules) then OP is off the hook...unless of course she doesn't want to take her under those circumstances.

At 17, there is NO WAY I would have gone on a vacation anywhere with a cousin/aunt (whether 4 or 20 years my senior) who insisted on treating me as incompetent child with no self-control or responsibility.

If OP insists on the "babysitting" stance then I say "run away, run away" from this situation before you end up with a horrible vacation and a real, family mess on your hands.

Princess_Belle
02-26-2008, 02:12 PM
I'm not being a dictator here. I am going to let them do what the want. I just want them to realize that they cant do whatever they feel like doing 24/7. I just want them in the same park. Thats not had to do. I want them to meet before meals and before any fireworks show. Then if we all leave together it will be easier. Pretty much other than than I'm not going to tell them what to do. We were planning on spend a lot of the time together already. So following these rules should be no problem. The girls have agreed to the rules. I would never make them stay at the room, or yell at them if they weren't at dinner on time. I know these girls and time will run away from them. That is mainly why we need rules in the first place. If they get caught up in the fun of disney and completely miss dinner then I'd be upset. That is why I need to set a few basic rules.

LadyntheTramp
02-26-2008, 02:31 PM
Hi...I have been following this thread and just wanted to chime in. To the OP, I don't see anything wrong with the rules you posted. Its not like you are making them check in every 10 minutes. I looks basically like you want them to check in just a few times a day, for dinner and stuff. And I fully agree with leaving together it can get hectic and being together means less worrying on everyone's part. Also I am the same age as you and if I was taking my sister (who is about the same age as you SIL) my rules would be about the same. My only comment is go and have fun. Also, if things go well you can always alter the rules, if you see they are being resposible, (kinda like a reward day at the end of the trip). But don't tell them that...hehe..and that's just an idea.

Have fun and I think the cousin and SIL should just be greatful they get to go.

PrincessV
02-26-2008, 02:46 PM
Wow. I'm genuinely surprised by a lot of the reponses here. At 17, I had a full-time job, an apartment of my own and a car. Had someone indicated that I might not be able to handle touring WDW without a guardian, I'd have been appalled.

OP, I'm not sure I understand what concerend you about being the "responsible" party - was it a money issue, what might happen in an emergency, or not trusting the cousin? It sounds like you've got it all resolved, but just in case you were concerend about any of the above:

Moeny: I'd set out the financial expectations from the beginning so everyone's clear on who's paying for what.

Emergency: I'd have the cousin's parents provide you with a signed and notarized note giving you/your DH the authority to act on their behalf should you need to in a medical emergency.

Trust: If you can't trust her to act properly, I wouldn't bring her at all.

SLP_PoohBear
02-26-2008, 02:51 PM
I'm not being a dictator here. I am going to let them do what the want. I just want them to realize that they cant do whatever they feel like doing 24/7. I just want them in the same park. Thats not had to do. I want them to meet before meals and before any fireworks show. Then if we all leave together it will be easier. Pretty much other than than I'm not going to tell them what to do. We were planning on spend a lot of the time together already. So following these rules should be no problem. The girls have agreed to the rules. I would never make them stay at the room, or yell at them if they weren't at dinner on time. I know these girls and time will run away from them. That is mainly why we need rules in the first place. If they get caught up in the fun of disney and completely miss dinner then I'd be upset. That is why I need to set a few basic rules.

I think the ground rules you set are fine, just make sure to come off more like a friend to them than a mother and they will be more likely to respect you. When you get to the park before you go your own ways say something like "ok guys we'll meet you at (insert time) is that ok?" You should be ok. Also, even though you & your DH both set the rules it might be better for him to give the park orders of the day when you are on your trip. Since he's related to the 2 girls they might be more incline to listen to him since he is their older brother/cousin and you are just an "in law" (kind of like the whole "your not my mom i don't have to listen to you" mentality)...don't worry many of us have been there too. And if all else fails and you are still suspisious you could always follow them :rolleyes1 lol

DaveCN
02-26-2008, 02:56 PM
Rules seem to be fairly reasonable, though I think 45 minutes before ADR is a bit much.

And the DTD rule is a bit silly. If they were 13, sure, but at their agem with phones, c'mon.

Let them know that you will tighten up the rules if they break your trust.

seashoreCM
02-26-2008, 03:43 PM
If you take a minor (child) with you, you must do what you have to do so that first aid and emergency situations are taken care of, and ask questions later. This may mean you have to autograph various documents thus putting you first in line on the financial hook. It would then be up to you to recover from the child's parent or guardian.

Also you need to make sure your guest has a good time in general, comparable to your own family members unless a directive to the contrary came from that child's parents. This may mean advancing funds for meals, park hopping, etc. if the child didn't have enough money.

In short, you are acting in loco parentis. If you don't want to do this, then immediately uninvite the child.

Disney hints: http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/disney.htm

wild4dis
02-26-2008, 03:51 PM
DW is a HS teacher and we took 24 HS seniors to London last year (there were 4 adult chaperones). This was a much different atmosphere than WDW with easy access to alcohol, big city, subway (the Tube !!) etc. But some groundrules were set (curfew, buddy system, no one leaves hotel after certain hour, spot checks, 1 problem and there sent home to parents on moms $$, etc) and we had a fantastic time with no trouble at all. Now these kids were all "good" kids, honor roll students who were really interested in the culture and education that came with this trip, not just a chnace to be away from home for easy trouble...this made it easier. DW had all these kids in class for a few years and knew them pretty well, so she was comfortable going with them.
I say as long as you feel the 2 "kids" are responsible to be alone at WDW and will abide by your rules......why not take them

TinaLala
02-26-2008, 04:05 PM
I'm an only child as well and my parents always brought my childhood friend with us. She's about 6 mo. older then me. Well my parents would let us go off together, but we had to stay in the same park as they were and we had to stay together. Usually we would meet for a meal. This was definitely once we were 17+ -- this was before cell phones so at least now you can call them.

I would sit the parents and the kids down and set the rules so that everyone is aware of what's going on. If the parents aren't crazy about two kids runnin around the park alone then the kids know and you can stick to them.

I'm not crazy about how she invited her cousin without asking you, but that's an issue you'll need to go into with her.

If you asked me if I'd do it now with an 18 year old - I'd say a little. They would be able to go around together, but in the same park as me and I'd have to know exactly what rides they would be going on. I'm a bit of a crazy mother who wishes she could lock her kids in their house so the outside world doesn't hurt them, but I know they need their space. You don't want to make it a crazy vacation for them, but they need to understand you are the adult and as long as they are there on your dollar or timeclock you are in charge.

CanadianGuy
02-26-2008, 04:31 PM
This has developed into a thread that is a better fit on the Theme Parks community board than an actual planning or strategy thread...

I'm moving it over to that board.

Thanks!

Knox

savannahjean85
02-26-2008, 06:50 PM
The only thing I do not understand is why you guys have to remain in the same park. Are you not going with park hoppers, because then I would understand. And if so are the girls going to be able to pick which park they want to go to each day? I mean since it is a gift to one of them as a graduation present. Because honestly that would suck if they didn't get to pick. It would be liking getting a gift from someone, but it was something the giver really wanted without thinking about the receiver.
And if you are going with park hoppers are you going to be willing to leave MK if they want to go to Epcot?
I think it would get ok to let them choose their park during the day and meet up for your dinner ADR then from that point on staying together so there will not be any getting back to the room late or getting separated. If you worry about time getting away from them, then that is the point of everyone having a cell phone for communication and reminders.
I do agree with you on not letting them going to DTD by themselves (at night) but that is mainly because anyone who feels like it can go wereas at the parks it is not the case.
Best of luck with you trip. :goodvibes