Age of independence on board?

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by dastewa, Feb 23, 2013.

  1. k3chantal

    k3chantal DIS Veteran

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    Wow! Making the assumption that you give them a little bit of freedom and they turn into hoodlums is not a great way to start out with any child. And assuming that the parents are checked out or don't care if they make the decision to allow their child certain freedoms is not appropriate.

    Great, you know your child. Obviously your child isn't ready. I am happy that you can make an appropriate decision for your child. But my child, at the exact same age, was ready. And no, I am not in denial about what he was doing and I am confident that he did not ruin anyone's vacation. He would text us where he was and what he was doing and occasionally we would physically check to see the accuracy of his statements. Guess what? Completely doing what and where he said he was. He made great friends during that week and I am glad that I could allow him this space for him to try 'growing up' without me hovering over him.

    You know, my mother grew up on the Stanford campus and told stories of walking and playing all day unsupervised. The one rule was to be back before dinner. My childhood: I was allowed to go to the library down the street by myself and with friends I could go to the park a few streets over. Today, what space do I give my children? My eldest (now 13) can go 4 houses down and I either watch him as he goes or he calls me from their telephone to say that he is there and we live in a gated community!. As an educator, I worry about the lack of opportunity to develop into functioning independent adults because that takes time. As a teenager, about to get my driver's license, I asked my mom how she knew where to go as she was driving. Yes, I figured it out and now consider myself to have a good sense of direction but would that have been developed earlier if I had been given the freedom to explore earlier? Yes, we live in a world of very bad people and yes, we do need to make decisions that make our children's safety a priority but on a Disney ship, these kids just want to be together and most of them are carrying a wave phone with instructions to check in and are participating in the planned activities.

    So, yes by all means do what you feel comfortable but don't make the assumption that the parents who have allowed their kids more freedom are somewhat lacking in parent prowess: just perhaps, they know their kids too.
     
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  3. Heyriddle

    Heyriddle Mouseketeer

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    I read through the link in response to my post and honestly I was surprised at how little was reported. From the tone of the post, I was thinking I was in for quite a shock. Actually the shock was the people who complained at not having condiments for their food. Really? While I know that part was not the point, we need to be alert regardless of where we are. I'm not Pollyanna in anyway. I have witnessed things I pray my own children will never see themselves. We need to be alert and smart but we can't go through life afraid.

    And yes, the Vibe has activities until 1 or 2. That's how we based curfew. He stayed in touch via the wave phone and always did what he said he would. As for hoodlums, I kind of laughed at this. My son swims 5 hours a day, is an active Eagle Scout, is heavily involved in Naval Sea Cadets and wants to serve our nation as a Navy officer. Trust me when I say he won't be disturbing anyone. He will be walking back to get some rest so he can enjoy the next day of the cruise.
     
  4. Tozzie

    Tozzie DIS Veteran

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    I just want to add something for those that give their kids freedom on the ship in addition to staying away from the rails and no going into anyones stateroom and vice versa tell them to stay off the elevators when they are alone. My sister let my niece and nephew have some freedom on the ship but there were rules and no elevators was on the list. My niece did make a face at that rule but I told her it was good exercise so suck it up or stay with your mother, guess what she chose.
     
  5. su_A_ve

    su_A_ve DIS Veteran

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    There's no self check in/out of Edge - And their programs do encourage them to roam the ship (albeit in groups).

    In our case, on our first cruise, DS11 started in lab. On the second day, we allowed him to check in/out, and that evening he wanted to try Edge. After that he was on his own.
     
  6. Lovin DCL

    Lovin DCL Earning My Ears

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    It is my understanding that kids in the Edge come and go as they please. There is no option to check them in and out. I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong. Just wanted to make sure you know what to expect before your cruise. If you want to check your son in/out, I believe he will need to go to the Lab.
     
  7. mammacaryn

    mammacaryn Don't be a JERK!

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    But you can make an agreement with your own child that they cannot leave until you come get them.....
     
  8. lizzyb

    lizzyb DIS Veteran

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    ODS is turning 10 while onboard but I do not feel comfortable letting him roam.
     
  9. Lovin DCL

    Lovin DCL Earning My Ears

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    Absolutely true. The kids do roam the ship quite a bit for Edge activities, though (sports deck, pool, arcade, pirate party, scavenger hunts, etc). While they are usually in a group, on our last cruise my son wasn't interested in the group activity they were doing in the Edge and asked to do a scavenger hunt. They gave him one of the scavenger hunt sheets and sent him out to do it on his own. We saw him out wandering around the ship writing down his answers. We went to talk to him but he wouldn't talk to us because they weren't allowed to get help with the scavenger hunt. He didn't want to be caught cheating, even though he was a group of one and under no supervision. :thumbsup2

    As others have said, you know your child best. Just wanted to point out that no one will be keeping him in the Edge if he wants to leave. And that many times the kids will leave to do activities. The counselors don't always walk them to/from these activities.
     
  10. PrettyPrincessJen

    PrettyPrincessJen AKA "MomBomb"

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    Our DS(17) and DD(15) will be able to come and go as they please but they will need to stick together unless they have cleared it with us first. They wont have a curfew but will have to get at least a few hours of sleep. DD(9) will be able to hang out with big bro and big sis, but will not be able to check out from the kids club or roam on her own. I trust her, just not everyone else. We require that we all meet up at dinner time and show time, and anytime that we have decided that we are doing a family activity. Usually though after dinner they are free to do what they wish. (within reason)
     
  11. lbgraves

    lbgraves Little Cinderella's Mommy

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    Very true, but if the parent requires their child to wait in the Edge for them to pick them up then that is their perogative. If the child wants to enjoy the Edge, they will follow the rules set for them by their parent.
     
  12. Weedy

    Weedy DIS Veteran

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    I agree!! Our children need to have some freedom to learn to navigate the world. How much freedom did you have as a kid? Do you really think the world has changed all that much? So when your child turns 16 are you just going to hand them the car keys and say go on out there. Or are you going to wait till they get to college. The Disney cruise is a great place for your child to learn to be independent. Can something bad happen, Yes. But you can't live your life in fear.
     

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