Dear Lola,

I am going on holiday in a month for a family wedding, and am facing a dilemma with my children. My son is the oldest and he is enrolled in school – our system has very strict attendance rules and he is not be able to miss those days to travel with us. My younger daughter is only in nursery, so attendance is not mandatory. My husband thinks we should bring her with us to the wedding, while his parents stay with our son. This will ease the burden on the grandparents who are not used to taking care of an active 3 year-old. My son doesn’t seem bothered by it too much, he’s a very mature 7 year-old, but I worry that will change once we are gone. At the very least, he will have to hear our daughter talking about all of the extended family she got to visit with, and all the fun things we did. I cannot see a solution to my worries!

The Troubled Traveler 

Dear Lola

Dear Troubled Traveler,

This is a situation fraught with endless ways in which things can go wrong, because Miniature Humans are unpredictable creatures. You could leave, and your son is absolutely fine with it. He will listen to your stories upon your return and have his own to tell – surely his grandparents will do special things with him after school and on the weekend.

Life rarely works out that well and the worst case scenarios must also be thought about.

Your son could have a complete meltdown after you leave, waging a war against his grandparents. Nothing will make him happy, and by the time you return home the grandparents will have decided to never visit the spawn of satan again. He will then turn on you, his supposedly loving parents, and wreak havoc on your emotions well into his university years. Your daughter will bear the brunt of his revenge, sibling rivalry is usually intense enough as it is – you’re adding in special vacations for only one of them!

I hope your daughter likes worms in her food, because he will do it!

You are in a catch 22 scenario here. If you take your daughter on vacation and your son becomes upset, you’ll have the right to remind your spouse of his poor suggestion until the end of eternity. I know that sounds appealing to you because you have to bite your tongue every time he puts the forks away in the wrong drawer. If you leave your daughter at home, you could return only to find that they overwhelmed the grandparents who ended up fleeing in the middle of the night.

The children then proceeded to act out Lord of the Flies.

Not only will your Miniature Humans be forever unable to accept your rules, your husband now has the upper hand in the relationship. He wanted to take your daughter but you thought you knew best!

On the other hand, you’ll have permanently gotten rid of your in-laws.

So really you need to ask yourself which end result you most want to see from this family wedding.


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