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post #1 of 22 Old 04-05-2018 Thread Starter
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Grandparents vs. Cruising

Hi Everyone,
I am looking for some advice, mainly from those with children who have moved aboard and gone cruising. My wife and I have the skills, means, and desire to move aboard and take our son ( who will be 3) cruising. However, we both have very close families, and on my side our son is the only grandchild.

My question is how did you decide that leaving behind family, especially grandparents, was worth it to cruise with your children? Also, for those who are out there now, do you think the time and experiences shared with your children made cruising the right choice?
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post #2 of 22 Old 04-05-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

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post #3 of 22 Old 04-05-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

I raised a daughter from birth to 12 circumnavigating and after, operating various vessels far afield from the grandparents. My parents probably couldn't have cared less and the wife's parents made no big issue of it as far as I was aware.
However, we have met a great many commuter cruisers who say that their trips home are all about the grand kids.
Though family is of course important, I should think it a sad thing for you to give up your dreams because you feel that much responsibility to your parents.
Anyway, boat kids are great!

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post #4 of 22 Old 04-05-2018 Thread Starter
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

Of course I care about our parents feelings, but that is not my main concern. I never had a close relationship with my grandparents because they frankly never made much effort. Our parents live less than an hour away and have been constantly involved in our sons life. He is also very attached to them. My wife and I cruised some before our son was born, and we both want to buy another boat and cruise with him. We will probably do so in the next year. I know everyone's situation is different, but I just wondered if there was anyone else that had this issue and how they handled it. Our lives are our own, but the choices we make also shape our sons life. We are responsible for making good decisions for his future. That is, after all, why we want to take him cruising. Thanks for the responses so far.
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post #5 of 22 Old 04-05-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

I grew up on my grandparents boat. He hardly ever took it out of Jamaica bay. But he taught me to drive his Caddy when I was 12... while he smoked and looked out the window. Told me the most incredible stories about building Navy ships and WW2 stuff. They had a toy box at their house with a 200 pc set of wood blocks and when I was little my grandmother would read me the comic strips. She made the best chocolate cakes in the world. God I loved them! They were - and still in my heart are - the best people. The very best. I have a picture of grandpa and me on his boat, framed over my desk.I was probably 2. The boat was named Bali Hai because they had dreamt of going to the south pacific. They never did. Loved those people so much and I miss them to this day, and I'm 52. I don't know the answer.

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post #6 of 22 Old 04-05-2018 Thread Starter
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

Sal Paradise you are right. I don't want anyone to tell us what to do. Just wondering how others made the decision to go. When we break the news to everyone I think moral support is going to be in short supply around here. I wish I had memories of my grandparents like yours, but they say you can't miss what you never had. Thanks
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post #7 of 22 Old 04-05-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

Just one additional perspective.

I believe our children learn from observing how we behave. Not 100% but a big %.

So what example do you want to set for your child? Would you want him to forgo his dreams to keep your grandchildren close? Or would you tell him “Take off Son, follow your muse.”

Guerin lies your answer. (maybe)

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post #8 of 22 Old 04-05-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

Having been raised in a close family who did a lot of visiting with extended family members on both sides I think you can maintain ties without constant immersion. As my brothers and I left home some of us moved a long distance from our home, but would try to visit at least once per year. We still stay in contact by e-mail and phone so nobody becomes a stranger. I don't see why you can't live aboard and still have occasions to visit with extended family to maintain those family ties. My sister-in-law collects digital pictures from everyone during the year and creates a calendar with the important dates listed and multiple photos scattered in the appropriate places. I might see some of my nieces and nephews maybe once in five years but we are able to keep up through the pictures. If any family members have helicopter tendencies there might be complications.....
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post #9 of 22 Old 04-06-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

First off, I left a pretty good job to find one closer to my parents. I grew up close to my grandparents, and my wife and I both wanted our daughter to know her family. It turned out to be the right choice for us. My daughter has a great relationship with my parents, and my sister, which I don't think she would have had if we had not lived near them when she was in her -- as the commercials say -- "formative years."

On the other hand, in today's world, technology can help. Your children can communicate with your parents almost daily if they want, via e-mail, texting, Facebook, Skype, whatever. Video chatting, especially, can allow your parents to watch your children growing up even when they are thousands of miles away. And, of course, worldwide travel is easier and less expensive than it has ever been, which means that you can go to see them, or they can come to see you, on a regular basis.

So, being far away does not mean that you are as separated as you were even just a decade or so ago.

Good luck, whatever you decide.
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post #10 of 22 Old 04-06-2018
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Re: Grandparents vs. Cruising

We're in a bit of a 'flip side' situation.

We are extremely close to our son, DIL and our (only) granddaughter. We have been actively involved in her care throughout her life (she's turning 11 in the fall) and treasure that time. Now we are retiring and have sold our condo and are moving to a relatively remote island (ferry access).

On the one hand I do feel that we are, to a degree, abandoning them, and they will surely miss the child care and other support we've offered over the past decade or more, but at the end of the day I think you have to do what makes you (and/or your spouse) happy. We are anxious to leave the city bustle and look forward to the rural quiet. Our granddaughter will soon be in her teens and likely more involved with friends and other activities anyhow, and they do have the means to visit, either by ferry or by their own boat so we expect we'll still see them monthly anyhow - and we can always hop on the boat or the ferry and go to them.

Not the same situation, but to a degree the same conundrum.. We are hoping that things will work out and we won't go into 'withdrawal'
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