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Old 10-02-2012, 04:09 PM   #16
stayhomemom77
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Originally Posted by Colleen27 View Post
I'm far from perfect (hey, I'm one of the DISers who admits to having <gasp> a student who does poorly!) and there's no mind control involved. I just don't think basic respect is too much to ask of the kids, even as teens. But I also don't think that our parenting successes are of our own making; a big part of the credit goes to the fact that all three of my kids are quite laid-back by nature.

If I took the stance that I was the boss and whatever I say goes I wouldn't blame my kid for being a PITA! We're a family of 5 - we blow a load of money on EVERY vacation we take and there just aren't that many places that we are all excited to see. If we only traveled by unanimous agreement on a destination or activity we'd never go anywhere. So we have a system of informally taking turns choosing the destinations. Sometimes that means DS14 has to suck it up and tolerate Disney (something he enjoys a lot more now that he's old enough to go his own way a bit), sometimes it means DD11 has to deal with a cabin in the woods when she'd rather be in a nice resort, and sometimes it means I get to be bored senseless hanging out with the preschooler in the kiddie area while the big kids explore a museum or tackle some adventure like zip lining.

I'm with you. My kids are 9 and 7 so Disney is still a much loved vacation for them but this past summer we took a three week driving tour of the west coast and they didn't love Yellowstone and were mad we didn't hit every children's museum that each city on our tour had to offer.

I told them to suck it up. Dad really wanted to go to Yellowstone and see the aircraft carrier museum in San Diego but wasn't terribly excited about Disneyland. I loathed Legoland and the San Diego Safari Park but had a great time at the Grand Canyon and the Disney area. We didn't complain and we expected the same from the kids. Sometimes they still were unhappy but sometimes they found they were having fun in spite of themselves.

Family fun sometimes involved compromises.

To the OP...if it were me, I would talk to the two youngest about the reasons they don't want to go and offer whatever solutions seem reasonable to make the trip more appealing to them. Some good suggestions have already been posted. I would also push the "onsite" angle. If they've never done it before...it might make it a whole different trip this time around. That's how our family felt our first time staying onsite.

If after this they still REALLY don't want to go, I would have a family conclave to decide what to do. I personally wouldn't want to go on a trip with only part of my family but I'd have a hard time giving up Disney for Vermont (as lovely as that state is).

Good luck! I hope you come to a resolution that works for the entire family.
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Old 10-02-2012, 05:10 PM   #17
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Wow! I can't get rid of my kids! My DH and I would love to go to WDW by ourselves and we will someday. Our DD-26, Ds-18 and DS-15 have told us that no matter where they are, if we are headed to Disney, THEY are going with us! I just hope they pay their own way!
LOL!

I hear Vermont is very pretty. That sounds like a great family vacation.
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Old 10-02-2012, 05:37 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colleen27 View Post
I'm far from perfect (hey, I'm one of the DISers who admits to having <gasp> a student who does poorly!) and there's no mind control involved. I just don't think basic respect is too much to ask of the kids, even as teens. But I also don't think that our parenting successes are of our own making; a big part of the credit goes to the fact that all three of my kids are quite laid-back by nature.

If I took the stance that I was the boss and whatever I say goes I wouldn't blame my kid for being a PITA! We're a family of 5 - we blow a load of money on EVERY vacation we take and there just aren't that many places that we are all excited to see. If we only traveled by unanimous agreement on a destination or activity we'd never go anywhere. So we have a system of informally taking turns choosing the destinations. Sometimes that means DS14 has to suck it up and tolerate Disney (something he enjoys a lot more now that he's old enough to go his own way a bit), sometimes it means DD11 has to deal with a cabin in the woods when she'd rather be in a nice resort, and sometimes it means I get to be bored senseless hanging out with the preschooler in the kiddie area while the big kids explore a museum or tackle some adventure like zip lining.
Sorry for flying off the hook. I got my feathers ruffled when it sounded like you were implying that people who take the kids' preferences into consideration are somehow allowing them to dictate where the family goes.

I see that your oldest is 14. It's a great age, but speaking from experience with boys, that's the age at which teenage boys start to assert their independence. An easy-going kid might not be difficult to reason with. A stubborn, opinionated kid only becomes that much harder to deal with when forced to do something they don't want to do. You learn to pick and choose your battles. Church every Sunday? Non-negotiable. You're going, bud! Disney World vacation with Mickey Mouse everywhere? Not a deal-breaker for me. Stay home with Grandma while the rest of us get our Disney fix. We'll bring you a t-shirt.

However, if my heart was set on doing a FAMILY vacation, I would try to find a place that everyone wanted to go. If half of the family said NO to Disney and the other half said that they would be fine with Vermont, we would be spending time in Vermont. Then I would take the money that I saved by not taking the whole crew to Disney and plan a short, grown-ups-only trip for me and my husband.
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:30 PM   #19
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I know I'm in the minority on the DIS but I don't let my kids dictate these things. They have input in the planning stages but they are also expected to understand that family vacations are about the whole family and involve compromises... And often that means going some place that isn't your personal best #1 dream vacation destination. We do what we can to make every destination enjoyable for everyone, so for my non-Disney loving teen that means a hotel with a fun pool, extra time at the waterparks and DisneyQuest, and giving him a lot of input into dining planning because the kid loves to eat. But he knows that making the whole family miserable because we didn't give into his preference for beaches with bikini views or tromping through the woods up north isn't an option, and none of the kids have dug in and refused to enjoy any vacation no matter how much they disliked the idea initially (and that goes for my DD getting dragged off to play in the woods as well as my DS getting hauled to WDW).
My kids don't get to dictate anything either, and ruining everybody else's vacation because they are pouting isn't acceptable, either.

But if they aren't thrilled with WDW, I don't see the point in wasting all that money and vacation time. I wouldn't go for an alternative that I would hate (so forget about camping in any way, shape or form), but if there are some less expensive options that are agreeable to everyone, that's what we're doing.

I like WDW and maybe someday dh and I will go by ourselves again once the kids are grown. But for now, I'm good with putting the couple of thousand we'll save into their college funds.
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:00 PM   #20
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My oldest is only 11, but if he does not like the vacation we have chosen to take then he can get a job and pay for the one he does want to take. I know this might sound harsh but really we are the ones working and paying for it, he don't have to like it but I do expect him to behave if he doesn't. If Disney is the vacation you want to take your family on then by all means do it, and don't let the children decide something that really the parents should have all the say in.
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:07 PM   #21
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My kids don't get to dictate anything either, and ruining everybody else's vacation because they are pouting isn't acceptable, either.
How do you pull this off? My son went from a happy go lucky easy going kid who we managed to take Washington DC summer 2011, even though museums and History aren't his thing, and had an enjoyable trip, into a sullen and non-communicative teenager over four months last winter and I am looking for ideas on how to get him to be more cooperative and have a better attitude. So far, not much is working. (He's fourteen). He's fundamentally a good kid, but his parents are uncool right now. Saying it isn't acceptable doesn't work, taking away privileges made it worse, and rewarding him when his behavior is positive hasn't had a great impact (although it works better than removing privileges).
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:31 AM   #22
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Just a little optimism if you decide to take the leap and bring your hesitant kids to the World. We just got home from a multi-family stay at the Cabins at FW. 6 out of 7 of our kids were over the age of 10, including two highly Disney opposed boys (17 & 15). I kept close eye on those beloved boys who have turned from beautiful cherubs to "too cool for anything Mom plans" man boys. Their faces lit up like fireworks, even on Its a Small World. They also highly enjoyed Disneyquest, Typhoon Lagoon and just about everything at HS. In fact, on the last day they were begging to go back to MK for another ride on Space Mountain. They may just be trying to be difficult. If you go, keep it fun and light. Let them make some plans, choices and maybe even explore on their own. They might be surprised to find out that Disney is great at any age! (And if you are still considering alternatives, Pigeon Forge Tennessee was a winner also, but maybe not in December.). Hope it all works out!
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:36 AM   #23
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How do you pull this off? My son went from a happy go lucky easy going kid who we managed to take Washington DC summer 2011, even though museums and History aren't his thing, and had an enjoyable trip, into a sullen and non-communicative teenager over four months last winter and I am looking for ideas on how to get him to be more cooperative and have a better attitude. So far, not much is working. (He's fourteen). He's fundamentally a good kid, but his parents are uncool right now. Saying it isn't acceptable doesn't work, taking away privileges made it worse, and rewarding him when his behavior is positive hasn't had a great impact (although it works better than removing privileges).
It's not always easy, is it? The teenage years are nature's way of keeping you from crying when they head off to college.

The key with my daughter is finding her currency. I take away her cell phone, and for every additional snotty remark, she loses another day. She'll normally push it a little bit and then she realizes that she's just digging herself in deeper.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:55 AM   #24
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I wouldn't plan an expensive trip if 2 out of the 4 didn't want to go; try to have a family meeting and come to a group decision. What about going to the Caribbean?

My 16 y/o was actually my 'worst behaved' when we went to WDW last year. I was all worried and concerned about the 2.5 y/o and was really shocked that the teenager was the royal PITA with her attitude and whining. Never again.
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:25 AM   #25
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I would ask a few more questions, and try to find out what the two kids object to, and what the big attraction of Vermont is. (Smuggler's Notch? We live 15 miles from the VT border, and aside from that, I'm drawing a blank!)

I also have 4 kids, and I try very hard on every vacation to take everyone's needs/wants into account. Not that everyone is going to be ecstatic every second, but I liek to have something that's super appealing for each child. For example, we spent a few nights at Great Wolf Lodge this summer. For DD17, she and I took a trip to the outlet mall. For DS15, we found a nearby rifle range, where he and DH got to try a number of rifles. DD9 was perfectly content at the waterpark and making a stuffed wolf. The highlight for DS6 was a day trip to the Crayola Factory. And the waterpark.

Similarly, when we go to WDW as a herd, we stay offsite--my kids prefer it. They like the room, they like my cooking, they like the private pool. We schedule plenty of down time, so they can watch movies or (DS15's favorite) play videogames in his own room with his own TV. We do Universal, Seaworld, and Gatorland. we stay for 2 weeks, but only go every other year.

DS15 has a chance to go to WDW as a class trip in the spring, and he doesn't want to go. He likes our family WDW vacations, and doesn't want to do the All-Stars and park blitz that he figures this trip will be. Along the same lines, I'm going down in Jan., with just my younger two kids. It'll be a different vacation, we'll stay onsite and jsut do WDW.

I should add that because of my family's size and age ranges, vacations require about as much planning as the invasion of Pearl Harbor.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:49 AM   #26
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I would ask a few more questions, and try to find out what the two kids object to
I did. It's a couple of things. We recently went to Canobie Lake Park and there were a couple of rides that we "made" the kids go on thinking that they would like them, and they ended up NOT liking them. So, now they are afraid that we will make them go on rides that will scare them.

Secondly, they really like outdoor things. We had gone on a vacation to Vermont last year, and their favorite part was kayaking on Lake Champlain! They LOVED it! So, I guess I need to do some research on what kind of outdoor-sy things we can do at WDW?

I took out our pictures from our last trip to remind them of all the great times we had. That seems to have helped. I think with a little more planning and ideas, I should be able to change their minds!
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:51 AM   #27
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We do two different vacations here. Disney frequently and Vermont for a summer week every other year. Both are great vacations. I really think you should try something different if that's what some seem to want. And in my family, my kids get no say at all, but they do love both types of trips.
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Old 10-03-2012, 11:04 AM   #28
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Well, if you decide on Disney I'd make it a shorter trip than 9-10 days, that's for sure. And I would take everyone, it's not a family vacation if two kids are missing.

Personally, I'd be looking at making the trip a two-part trip. Part at Disney World and the other in Key West.
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Old 10-03-2012, 12:42 PM   #29
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My kids are about the age of your kids. We are planning a trip to WDW & have decided to add Universal because both kids are huge Super Hero & Harry Potter fans. My oldest has said no Character Meals & no autograph book and I'm wondering if we will be able to get any character pics with him but he will be with us, which is the important thing.

As they get older we still decide the destination but they do have input in what we do at the destination. It seems to make the trip run more smoothly when we can say 'I know you don't like this museum but it was your sisters choice & Thursday we are going to the Worlds Biggest Lego Store that you want to visit'. And wonder of wonders, sometimes they decide they like what someone else picked out.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:14 PM   #30
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It's not always easy, is it? The teenage years are nature's way of keeping you from crying when they head off to college.

The key with my daughter is finding her currency. I take away her cell phone, and for every additional snotty remark, she loses another day. She'll normally push it a little bit and then she realizes that she's just digging herself in deeper.
Yeah, that didn't change behavior, cell phone, skateboard, getting grounded, video games, tv. There is no currency that he reacts to. And he never has... Didn't back as a toddler.
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