- 1 year ago
- Wedding: November 2016
So I know this is totally a first world issue, but my dad is thinking of selling our family boat that we keep at our summer cottage. Now, before you get ideas of a luxury yachts or anything, this is a motorized lobster fishing boat that fits about four people. We’ve had it my whole life and the idea of selling it is making me feel like I am losing a family pet (which is insane, I know). I’m literally at work tearing up. Part of the issue I think is that there aren’t a lot of constants from my childhood. My childhood home has been sold, my parents are divorced and both live in other cities/countries from where I grew up and from where I live. (I realize this is super common these days, but it feels big to me). This boat has been a constant in my life and I have tons of memories puttering around, exporing little islands, picnicing on it, whale watching, etc. In my mind I was a) eloping on this boat, and b) I was going to make memories on the boat with my kids should I have them.
The other issue is my Dad is retiring shortly, and I thought, somewhat mistakenly I think, that he was going to settle down and spend more time at our summer cottage / with me. We are quite close. If anything, the reverse has happened. He is constantly busy with work, projects, his (much younger) girlfriend, etc. I assumed once he retired he would spend more time at the cottage, and therefore not want to sell the boat. It’s not particularly costly, about $1500 a year for everything which he splits with a friend, but its not cheap either. However, his living expenses are very low and he makes good money, so it’s not really about the cost, I think its more about the logistics and responsibility.
I also feel guilty. I’m 29 but I don’t make enough money to contribute in a super meaningful way without my Dad feeling guitly. I’d be happy to pitch in for a 1/3 of costs, but my Dad won’t take the money. I’m also not particularly mechnically skilled and while I can drive the boat in a pinch, I’m not fully comfortable taking it out / caring for it by myself (our cottage is on the ocean, so it can actually be quite dangerous and requires a lot of knowledge of currents/weather/tides/etc.). I think my dad had this idea in his head that by the time he was in his sixties, I would be married with a few kids, either on mat leave or working parttime and we would spend a lot of time together in the summers. I haven’t found anyone I would like to marry, and I’m fine with that. But I think my dad pictured having a younger man around to help out with things, and grandkids to play with, and I feel stupidly guilty for not providing that (I have no siblings). Also my Dad, because of his own career decisions, previously had a lot of time off in the summer (1-2 months) and he doesn’t really understand the modern workforce and can’t figure I out why I can’t take more time off – even though in reality, I take as much time as I can to be with him in the summer. Finally, I am moving abroad for 2 years in a couple of months, which is maybe making me feel extra nostalgic. I know I should have enough $$ and vacation time to spend 2+ weeks at the cottage every summer, but I don’t think that’s really enough in my Dad’s eyes – even though he’s not necessarily there any more often.
I’m not sure what I want with this post. Just a vent, try and take my mind off it, maybe some sympathy. And ideally, the idea tha while I may not have a boat for the next little while hopefully in 10ish years I will be able to afford one and buy it on my own / with a partner and make some new memories.