Post # 1
My family has been called dysfunctional for a few reasons. And I have no problem with that because I happen to like living this family life. For example, we eat dinner with the tv on. We don’t sit around the living room and talk. I don’t go over just to spend ‘quality time’. We have no family portraits hanging. We don’t play board games or meet up for Sunday brunch. Now I’ve come to learn we have another dysfunction. We don’t take family trips together anymore.
My soon to be exFI takes a family vacation with his mom, step-dad, and brothers every year. His mom plans it from Christmas to New Years every year. For one week they stay together in a house and have bonding time. One year it was a ski trip, one year Paris, this year London. If you’ve read my previous posts, he’s 40, his brothers are in their 30’s. I casually mentioned at the total weirdness of going on vacation with mommy every year and how that stopped in my family when I was 16 and he said that’s what normal families do, they spent time together and travel together -it’s called being appreciative of each other.
Then I remembered his cousins. Every year, the parents, the 3 kids, their husbands, and their kids travel to a secluded cabin on the lake with no internet access or tv and they spend the week fishing, making smores, telling ghost stories and making crafts, and they’ve been doing it for 30 years. His cousins are the same age and they’re all married with children and they still do this so maybe this is just a weird family. (This is like my own personal hell)
Then I talk to my best friend today and I tell her about how he thinks it’s normal for a 40 year old to go on a family vacation with his mom. And she tells me she goes on 2 family vacations a year with her family, and those include her cousins, nieces, and even her grandma!
Is this like a new trend? Do I need to add this to my ‘another reason why my family is dysfunctional’ list?!
Post # 3
@Iluvmydog: Don’t feel bad! In real life, I’ve never heard of this either and my first impression is that it’s kind of strange and that the apron strings need to be cut. However, getting married has taught me that all families are different and different doesn’t mean strange or bad.
Post # 4
We take family trips for big events. For my step-father’s 60th birthday a few years ago, we all took a cruise together – my parents were amazing enough to pay for our rooms, though we all paid the rest of our own expenses. It was one of the best times ever. There’s been talk of having another family vacation to celebrate my mom’s retirement in a few years.
Frankly, I would love to take a vacation with my family every year. I live 8 hours away from them, and I never feel like I see them enough, no matter how many visits we have in a year (usually 2-3, if it matters). I think it’s really nice that they’re able to do it.
If there was an issue with not being able to take enough vacation time to where the family vacation was interfering with my ability to take a vacation alone with my FI, I would probably feel differently. But I think that’s a different issue.
ETA: Regardless of my opinion on this matter, I read your other threads and I think your FI has a seriously screwed up dynamic with his mom. I’m really sorry about the turn things have taken with him.
Post # 5
You are not alone. Neither of us has vacationed with our families since we were about 16. We do go to visit them but that’s not part of any planned vacation.
Post # 6
We still go on family vacations, but it’s not a regular thing. It happens if we can all manage to get our schedules to work out. It’s never just the 4 of us though (parents, me, and sister) it includes our spouses and now my niece 🙂
Post # 7
We still go on trips with my extended family (my parents, and sister/BIL/nieces). It’s really a good time for us, and my parents enjoy treating us to a fun trip. It’s never anywhere fancy, no airplane involved, but almost every year we do something. Usually we end up going to Reno, when my dad has a conference out there in the summer, or out to Arizona to meet up with extended extended family. I don’t think it’s weird to NOT go on trips with your family. Every family dynamic is different. This is just what we do, and frankly, it’s a lot of fun. We like each other, though, so it’s not awkward, just a fun few days for us all to get away, go swimming, and relax. If we didn’t go on these little trips with my family, we probably wouldn’t get to go anywhere at all.
Post # 8
I think the family trips stop because of scheduling and other priorities. I actually miss the family vacations, and was doing them yearly until about 4 years ago when I was 28. With my husband now, we’ve just had other trips that take priority (our sort of vacations woud not make a good family vacation) and scheduling trips now with my brothers different wokr and school schedule is harder.
Post # 9
My family does still vacation together, my husband’s does not. My sister and I are both in our late 20s.
Post # 10
We still go on family vacations occasionally. Now it’s usually me, FI and my mom though because my dad doesn’t like sitting on the airplane forever (bad back) and my brother is glued to his gf. I still think they’re fun though, and my folks usually foot a big part of the bill so that’s a huge bonus. We actually debated doing a river tour through europe with my parents for a honeymoon lol (different rooms obviously!).
Post # 11
Sounds like your FI and friends are pretty well off 😛
Trust me, this is not normal. I am not throwing away the idea of family trip. But I am just telling you a lot of people can’t afford it every year even if their family is close.
I think if his family is okay with it, so be it. There is no harm in it.
My parents lives overseas now so we get to see each other maybe twice a year at most? Dont even think about vacations. It’s lucky I get to see them.
even my extended family and FI’s extended family works very differently. His family pretty much cut off a lot of extended family and while ours are pretty tight. I think his is weird, whereas he thinks mine is weird.
I hope we don’t ever have to go on vacation with both families, haha.
Post # 12
I think it all depends. I’ve never been on a trip with my mom’s side of the family, but my dad’s family tries to vacation together whenever possible (aunts/uncles/cousins). Not everyone comes every year as its impossible to align everyone’s schedules, but there is a house rented, and several family members in attendance at least every year. I love it and hope it continues forever. I went on vacation with my boyfriend’s family recently but it doesn’t happen every year because we all like to plan our own vacation, but it was fun and somethign I’m sure we’ll do again in the future. My immediate family doesn’t vacation together because my parents are divorced, but I am going on vacation soon with my dad to visit my sister. I think its all very normal.
Post # 13
- Wedding: September 2012 - Mother of the Bride's residence
I actually just stopped taking family vacations in the past few years and its solely because I don’t have the vacation days at work. My dad, his girlfriend, my sister, her husband, and the baby all hang out for a week or so in South Carolina, while my dad and his GF are down there for a few months over winter.
Now, we’ve been doing the family vacation thing since before I can remember — we used to take March break and usually another week and head down to Florida, every year since I was like 4. Over the years different family members joined us, like cousins and my grandparents.
I really love family vacation and I really, really want to go next year with Mr. Dragon even if it means losing out on a bit of our paycheques, especially now that I have a niece and she’s starting to get her own memories of family vacation. It’s a tradition that I enjoy!
Post # 14
Yep! And I love it and wish I could do it more often. Consider yourself lucky to be marrying in to a great family that values their time with eachother. I think it’s great that they do it once a year over the holidays. I’ve travelled with mine every couple of years or so and always have a great time. We don’t spend every minute together, but pretty much all breakfasts and dinners are as a group. Skiing, beach houses, fishing trips, etc. Always great memories to share with some great people. <3
Post # 15
Yep, we still vacation with my family. We have been going to the Outer Banks over the July 4th holiday. It’s usually me, my fiance, my sister and her hubby, my parents, and my aunt, uncle and two cousins. Last year my sister’s hubby’s parents came with us as well.
My fiance’s family hasn’t taken a vacation in years…
Post # 16
@HereWeGo: I think it’s funny you mentioned skiing. That’s the only trip I ever attended. I have fond memories of a broken leg, spending 5 days shacked up in the house alone with his mom while everyone was out skiing, and 6 months of physical therapy.
We’re not getting married, but, personally, I think once a child is married, it’s extremely disrespectful to have an annual vacation over the holidays. You are forcing their SO to make a very difficult decision. When the trips are mandatory, the SO must either permanently give up seeing their family over the holidays or give up seeing their SO for a week and spending every holiday without them. In my case, I have a lot of tradition built up in my family for Christmas and his mother is Jewish so they have none. To tell my mom I was leaving her alone every Christmas to go flying around the world with my ‘new’ family would have broken her heart. Especially when I’m 6 hours away from my mom and down the street from his.
Ya…I’m just not a family oriented person. Wasn’t raised with that gene. Maybe Disneyland, but after that…nah.