Parenting – Help! We’re going on a hell-iday
We all dream of ENJOYING THE LAST DAYS of sunny weather holidaying but get sulks, stress and shouting instead. Here’s how to SURVIVE this Easter with YOUR DEAREST KIDS.
When did enjoying yourself with those you’re closest to become such hard work? The main trouble with family holidays is that if you’re travelling with anyone under 25 or over 55, it’s not a ‘holiday’ as such, merely a change of scenery. Then there’s the mind warp that starts as soon as it’s booked. An idea gets lodged in your psyche: this year, you’re going to make sure that everyone has a really fabulous time.
Except, except. There can be a hefty gap between expectation and reality. Many of us have some kind of soft-focus, fuzzy notion that once we’re abroad with our family, we’ll be merry like the Kardashians. But it’s an idea that has to survive getting up at 4am for the flights with unreserved seating, or staying in tiny accommodation without decent WiFi or DStv.
But still, there’s the hope that the teenagers won’t kick off about the lack of mobile signal; that your sister or mother won’t disgrace herself on the bar; that toddlers will thrive on a totally different bedtime, menu and climate.
In short, that your family will behave this Easter break. Little wonder, then, that when it comes to autumn or winter holidays, research suggests that only one in five parents looks forward to it – frankly, it’s surprising the figure is this high (when asked to pick words to describe holidays, some 30% went for ‘hard work’, ‘tiring’ or ‘exhausting’).
Or maybe you fall into the other camp: the ones who deny reality and – despite whatever personal hell they are enduring – sip bubbly with their feet up, eat scrumptuous lunch by the pool or bask in the sun or post smug Facebook pics of their photogenic children and brag about the view from their hotel. As families in SA become more ‘blended’