Q: A Charleston grandmother recently complained that her daughter and son-in-law went on a cruise without their 3-year-old daughter. The child visited grandma but stayed with a friend. Several parents responded that the girl would be fine, and that her mom and dad needed to get away. Now the opposing side speaks up:
From a father and day care operator in Buffalo:
“My wife and I operate a home day care. Many of our kids are dropped off before 6a.m., and they are not picked up most nights until after 5p.m., five to six days a week, year round. The parents hardly see their children as it is. If parents go away on vacation and leave their children home with family or friends, this is selfish....
“We have four children, and when we go on vacation, they always go with us. We hear it all the time from parents, ‘Oh, we can't wait to get on our plane to Aruba, and get away from the kids.' The same kids that you won't come to pick up on the agreed time each evening and wait until the last possible minute before you come? The same kids who haven't seen you all day? The same kids who seek and deserve your attention? ...”
A similar opinion from a mother:
“The idea of parents needing to get away from their children once in a while reflects a deep-rooted attitude that is the basis for a number of marital problems. The attitude is based in selfishness. Marriage and children require a certain amount of sacrifice that should be welcomed by parents who love their children.
“If one or both partners refuse to give up their personal needs, there are problems.”