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On Vacay with skids- please kill me

Step-girlfriend's picture

Let's go on a family vacay with skids they said! It will be fun they said! 
I want to dig my eyes out with a spoon. We are in Mexico for a week. The resort is beautiful. Where do I even start with how this trip is a debacle? We picked a place with a kids club for SD10, and a teen club for SS13 so we would get some adult time to ourselves. We put hours and hours of research into this. Well, only very little kids go to the kids club, so that's kind of out. SS went to the teen club and even snuck in SD, and decided it was "not good". The games were "broken". Hmmm...I called this before we even got here. This kid has been a stage 5 clinger lately, and he doesn't like to make new friends- I had a feeling he would try to dodge the teen club. Sure enough! I want to tell him, too bad, go entertain yourself for a while, and take SD with you so we can have time to ourselves! I really wish my SO would tell him that, and although he hinted at it last night, so far it hasn't been said.

Also, it's like everyone decided to be their most annoying version of themselves: by day-SD just hangs on my SO like she's 5 and expects him to entertain her. At night, she pouts. All night, from the start of dinner on, she pouts. The first night we mostly ignored it and the rest of us actually had fun. Last night, my SO and SS spent hours smiling at her, teasing her, and just kissing her a*s in general trying to get her to stop pouting, which never actually worked. It ended with me saying something to my SO about how we're in for a rough road If they think the answer to her pouting is rewarding it by everyone kissing her a*s and fawning over her. She will milk that for all it's worth. Rather than turning a light bulb on in his head, this kicked him Into defensive daddy mode, which caused a fight. Exhausting. 

The rest of the time, my SO has been just catering to skids. He will literally throw the ball to them in the pool for hours. I finally told him I don't want to go to the pool with them because I don't really want to throw the ball for hours. He did tone it down then, but just for that day. But if SD even looks remotely bored, he is all "do you want me to throw the ball to you"??? Like she is a dog. And she always does! He bought her a kit to build a sand castle which she claimed she wanted, but then she wouldn't do it by herself, so of course he had to help. She's almost 11. Then we were all laying on the beach relaxing, except she was bored, so instead of her going to find shells by herself like we had just done, he asked if she wanted him to find shells with her. Good grief, make the girl entertain herself sometimes!! He never does, he always has to offer to play with her.

Today we tried to go deep-sea fishing and I got extremely sea sick. I puked at least 10 times. SS puked once too. SD claimed to be sick but didn't throw up, and tonight she admitted she mostly felt fine, although the entire time on the boat she was literally draped across my SO, head in his lap, or on his arm, dramatic faces, looking as if she may die, but I apprently that was an act? I'm not amused. 

The 24/7 time is too much. We finally got to hang out in the pool while skids were in the room for a few hours today, but we were talking to another couple and it wasn't really us time, and halfway through my SO went back to the room and convinced skids to come out to the pool too. I'm so frustrated by the whole situation, I really do lot see is doing a vacay like this again anytime soon. We have had some good times and meals are usually fine, I am just super disappointed taht my SO is being such a coddler and not pushing for us to have more alone time, and that he's not correcting some of the ridiculous behavior coming out of SD. 

It should be noted that as I write this, I skipped out of the show at the resort tonight and let him take skids alone. I'm now on our balcony, blissfully enjoying not dealing with this for a bit. I'm thinking only long wknd family vacays from now on.


Livingoutloud's picture

My ex had two adult DDs. They always tried to go on vacations with us and those few times they went were the worst memories of my life. Literally never been that depressed. I can write a novel about horror of those few trips. After that I refuse to let them come with us 

Jcksjj's picture

Oh no...that had been my plan for the next "family" trip was a cruise with the kids/teens clubs. It never occured to me that they might whine about that also. 

Bring skids to a beautiful beach and it might as well be garbage ridden with dead fish washed up all over.

justmakingthebest's picture

We are big cruisers and my kids won't ever go to the clubs. However, there are  adult only areas and DH and I will ditch the kids. We tell them we are disappearing and go. There is a TON to do on the ship and my kids do hang out with eachother and are also quick to make friends, so it works for us. 

If DH wasn't willing to ditch the kids, I would be pissed though. 

justmakingthebest's picture

Personally, I find Disney just highly over priced. Royal Caribbean and Carnival are wonderful lines and 1/2 (or even less!) the cost. RC is my favorite but when we go with kids I usually do Carnival. They don't know the difference and for the $ I save I can do all the excursions and booze packages I want! LOL

They all have kids clubs, pools, water slides, activities, etc. I just don't see the point in ever paying for Disney.

Step-girlfriend's picture

"If DH wasn't willing to ditch the kids, I would be pissed though"


Yep, especially when we talked about it and that was why we chose this resort, for the kids clubs! I said earlier today that I think the kids need to be encouraged to go- he did suggest that SD go for craft time at 2pm, and she did and has been there for hours. He also said he was going to send SS to the teen club, so my SO and I went to lunch alone and came back to find that SS didn't even go to the teen club. WHY??? He would rather sit here on his phone and not allow us any alone time. 

I am so over this. Never again will I do a 7 day trip with them! 

grace8205's picture

Skid was older when DH and I got together, he was 16. By the time me planned vacations when we lived together he was 18. I would never want to go on vacay with skid. It would not be relaxing, it would be a similar nightmare that you are typing about. 

hopefully you can have some rest and relaxation while you are away. It just won't be with your DH. 

Valik's picture

Now, ex boyfriend would say " I wish SD was here. " " we totally will bring SD next time " "SD would have so much fun here," every time we were on any solo trip. 

In my head, this is how it was going to play out. 

She Cannot entertain herself for a 2 minute car ride, and has to walk next to him in the grocery store while i follow like a shunned puppy. I DID NOT want to bring that to any form of vacation that I pay into. Might as well book for one. 


Im sorry you're dealing with this, don't the bars have unlimited drinks ? I say, bottoms up. 

Step-girlfriend's picture

Girl I am definitely partaking of the unlimited drinks! We actually have a room right by the beach so the waiter makes a stop by us and brings me drinks right to the patio if he sees us outside! Lol. 
Also, funny you mention that "SD walking next to your (ex) BF while you walk behind". SD10 has tried that on this trip every time we walk somewhere. Nope. I'm not going to trail behind. I've actually had that talk with my SO after we took the skids to Mall of America and that was a nightmare too because of all the complaining and skids jostling for position next to my SO while I trailed behind. I told him at times skids actually tripped over me trying to get next to him. This time, he did notice once and grabbed my hand so I was walking next to him. Other times i just cut them off so it's very clear they should be walking behind us or in front.  It also drives me insane that any time we walk up to a counter in a store or ATM, they run up next to him and stand there right at the counter, leaving no room for me, when chances are I'm the one who needs to be talking to the attendant. I always have to tell them to back off and let me up there. Gah!

justmakingthebest's picture

Drink up lady! Read a good book, lounge by the pool or the beach and have DH come find you when he realizes that you aren't around to cater to the kids!!!

Kes's picture

I feel for you - being in a wonderful place and being unable to enjoy it at all.  I have never been on a holiday with the SDs, and never would.  The most I did was a weekend to MIL's house, never to be repeated - it was a disaster.  

Step-girlfriend's picture

Thank you! This is our second longer trip and I honestly had worries, but they are all coming true. I'm pissed that my SO isn't even trying to make sure him and I have quality time- he is so obsessed with making sure skids are constantly entertained. 

shamds's picture

Pampering them while they ignore me and my kids and be so degrading and condescending to us. So if hubby wants romantic family time with the hopes of some sex, i told him he wouldn’t be getting any with skids around and this was about 1.5-2 yrs ago.

i also told hubby that if he wanted to invite skids, will he guarantee they will be held accountable for bad behaviour nd that it will not be tolerated or they will stay home? Of course he couldn’t guarantee it.

i told hubby if sd’s drummed up the same disrespectful bullshit will he have them made to go home and not be on family time with us? Of course he doesn’t want to deal with that drama. I told him its a horrible idea to have them on so-called family trips because they do not behave as pleasant people yet alone family members. I told hubby if he would bring skids along by the time he arrived at the hotel that me and my kids wouldn’t be there as we won’t have a well deserved holiday ruined by them


Justthesecondwife's picture

I feel so badly for you. Going on vacation, especially to a beautiful resort is supposed to be relaxing and a time to connect and enjoy your time with your DH relaxing. You sound like you are in a nightmare, I don't blame you. I would be pretty resentful of the money paid, and time taken off work, only to not enjoy yourself because of skids.

I would have to let DH and the skids do their own thing while I found some relaxation of my own. Your DH needs a kick up the pants with his coddling and not organising his kids in the manner in which the vacay was planned. They didn't like kids club, so you have to be the one to sacrifice your enjoyment of your vacay? I'm hoping you leave them to their own devices while you go and have spa sessions, drink margaritas by the pool and actually have a vacay, even if it's without DH.

Step-girlfriend's picture

I skipped the pool with them yesterday part of the time to read my book and drink on our patio, then last night skipped the show to do the same. I've also had solo beach time. I am enjoying that!

tog redux's picture

The only way kids are tolerable on vacation is if they bring friends or cousins.  Lesson learned. Vacations with most kids will become about the kids, especially now when kids only know how to entertain themselves via electronics.  

My family does a lake reunion every year and all the kids ever wanted to do was watch TV or look at the computer. 

Step-girlfriend's picture

I keep encouraging them to make friends with the other kids in the pool, but they won't even try. They don't have to, because daddy will throw them the ball whenever they want! 

This has been another irritant- my SO spends more time ensuring their electronic devices are charged, it is absolutely ridiculous. There is so much talk about charging their devices I want to scream. Is your phone charged enough? Dad my phone isn't charging. How do you charge the power bank? Dad there's no outlet by the bed, how will we charge our phones??? Followed by him dropping everything to save the day. They just can't function without their phones. I shouldn't complain, the few moments we've gotten without skids are thanks to them watching their phones...

Winterglow's picture

Here's an idea - tell him to look around the pool and see how many other fathers are playing non-stop with their children of similar ages. Are there many? No? Does he realize how creepy he looks to other parents ...? That they might think he's hanging around a pool with tons of kids for a different reason?

Step-girlfriend's picture

After a full hour of playing catch went by, then volleyball, then more catch...Those very words almost came out of my mouth (guaranteed to be a fight). But I have been paying attention- dads have been playing catch with their kids in the pool for about 10 mins at a time. That's it. Then they're done. The families with multiple kids, the kids are playing together while the adults happily drink. My SO is the ONLY ONE spending hours playing catch rather than hanging with the adults, and he never tells skids to just play with each other. 

Rumplestiltskin's picture

Think about your childhood. Do your best memories involve your parents mindlessly entertaining you for hours, like throwing a ball back and forth when you were in middle school? Mine don't. My parents did things with us sometimes, but those were special occasions, and the fact that they didn't happen often is what made them special. 

I wonder if, in today's child-centric world where almost everyone seems to be divorced, parents remember the special times and feel pressured to try to recreate them every day, taking away what made them special in the first place. My siblings and i spent 90% of our time entertaining ourselves. Having parents hovering all the time by ages 10 and 13 would have sucked. Feeling the need to constantly entertain kids seems to just be making everyone more miserable. Think about it. Do these constantly entertained kids ever look happy?

Trying to Stepmom's picture

My DH is the oldest of six, so he definitely knows that his parents weren't constantly entertaining him and his siblings. I bet daddy guilt plays into this constant entertainment of the skids though. I have been vocal to DH about not having to entertain SD or make sure she's having a great time everytime she's with us. He gets it more now because he sees what an unpleasant person she is most of the time, but I think he forgets or has too much faith in the fact she could change. 

I think because we don't have her very often, he would try and make it the best, but that clearly doesn't help. 

Rumplestiltskin's picture

It makes sense if you hardly ever see the kids. In that case, all time with them would be "special time." But then you would only be spending whatever small amount of time you had them entertaining them, so it would be manageable. 

I guess i'm talking about parents who have the kids half time or more. I remember early after my divorce (i had 50/50), i was telling my cousin how i try to make sure we always do fun things when i have them, and save the boring things for when they are with dad. My cousin, who was mid 20s, no kids, asked me when they would learn patience and life skills, then. It was a major lightbulb moment for me and i'm so grateful to him. Ironically, he and his wife haven't been able to have kids amd it's a shame because he would be a really good parent : (

Step-girlfriend's picture

No one played with me when I was a kid! His parents rarely did either. I have made this very point to him before. He always says he wants to play with skids and enjoys it. Maybe sometimes, but I call bullish*t because there is no way he wanted to build a sand castle or look for shells when he wouldn't even do it when we all were doing it. He only did it once SD looked bored. It drives me crazy that he will never tell her to go play by herself. At home this isn't really an issue anymore, (it used to be, and then she got a phone and now only plays on her phone so is never bored), so it sucks that it reared its ugly head here. I'm sure it's dad guilt, he wants this vacation to be so fun for them, and thinks it's his job to make it fun.

CLove's picture

Yikes, this sounds like my nightmare.

We have NEVER gone on vacation together this entire 5.5 years, and I am planning weekend trips, to test the waters for this very reason.

Step-girlfriend's picture

So far we've gotten to go for a 20 min walk on the beach where skids were texting me, and then a few hours in the pool. That's it. That's all. We just got back from the ocean and the pool and I'm about to lose my sh*t. The ocean was fine. The pool was hours of my SO throwing the ball to skids. Then he immediately transitioned Into playing water volleyball with them. He asked if I wanted to play- I said no, I kind of just want to chill. After they stopped he got a drink and sat for 10 mins before SS asked if he would throw him the ball again, and of course he said yes. So i stood there by myself guzzling drinks the entire time we were in the pool. I'm visibly annoyed but also don't want to spend the trip fighting. 

Rumplestiltskin's picture

Good Lord, what is with them and that damn ball?! No way any of them could be actually enjoying it that much, i bet they are all sick of it! 

Step-girlfriend's picture

Thank you!!! I just want to throw it out Into the ocean!!

hereiam's picture

"Oh gosh, I didn't think stabbing a ball with steak knife would do that. So sorry!"

Iamwoman's picture

We stopped taking skids on vacations when they ruined a beach cottage trip for us several years back.

Lucky for me, DH has less patience than I do, and is it a Disney dad, so he was the first one to say they never get to vacation with us again.

hereiam's picture

Vacation and step kids? I just can't seem to reconcile those two things.

I'm sorry that your vacation is sucking.

Trying to Stepmom's picture

Sorry your vacay is sucking. Take advantage of the alone time, I guess. Smile

My SD is coming on vacay with us in about a month. I'm dreading the drive, but luckily some of her cousins will be with us once we get there. DH suggested SD bringing a friend, but I shot that down in a heartbeat, maybe for selfish reasons (ie, her friends always seem to bring sickness or lice into our house; this is our first big road trip with the new baby; I don't want to have to pay to feed another mouth for a week).

Siemprematahari's picture

After the experience that you're having vacationing with his kids are you going to do it again? I can't imagine enjoying myself with two coddled kids that need constant entertainment. It's not a vacation and personally I would never go with them again. Unless SO changes and does something to remedy the situation I wouldn't spend my money, time, or energy on vacationing with them ever again. I work too hard and vacation is a luxury, so to spend it like that would be a complete waste.

Hope he changes his tune and sees that its impacting you and the relationship.

Step-girlfriend's picture

4-5 day trips from here on out, that's it. And No beach vacations! The thing is, my SO talks a good game..."I really want somewhere with a teens club and kids club so skids can do their own thing and we get to do ours and not have them with us the whole time". Weeks of research ensues, only for him not to actually make SS use said teen club, which defeats the purpose. And the coddling! My SO already said we should take skids to Washington DC to visit my good friend who recently moved there. They have small kids, my SO said we could leave skids at the house to babysit while the adults go out! Sounds great, but chances are the guilt would kick in once we got there and it wouldn't happen. 

As it is now, I saw him watching skids today and they looked bored. Later he announced he thinks we need to book another excursion because "he" is sick of the pool and ocean. Riiiight, I'm sure that's it. He sees one sign of boredom out of skids and he panics, he wants this to be some magical vacation. So he just dropped $380 on another excursion. 

Imhereagain's picture

My husband and I have been discussing summer vacation and in the last convo about it, the kids came up somehow. He was like, we aren't taking the kids? I was like, uh no, for what. I actually want to relax and enjoy my vacation. Not pamper your 6 year old who does not listen and your 10 year old who is constantly "bored" and in your face 24/7 wanting to be entertained. It's a hell no for me. 

Thisisnotus's picture

OMG I feel for you. I know what that is like and it IS AWFUL.

We are going to Disney for 8 days pretty soon....I am dreading a week with skids who are teens and will act like toddlers. My own 3 kids are going so this is the ONLY reason we are doing a family trip.

I have already told DH that for a minimum of 2 hours per park day.....the kids will go off by themselves....they are all 12 and up.

If this trip is a disaster (by disaster I mean SD12 won't leave Dh's side for 8 days) then his little princesses are OUT and DH and I will vacay alone....and I will vacy with my kids alone......


TheAccidentalSM's picture

I've managed successful skid vacations in the past when the SSs were younger but I think we were lucky.  I booked them and DH into a very intensive activity every morning so I could have alone time (think learning to surf for 3 hours every day or snowboarding lessons).  Other tricks as they got older were to bring friends/girl friends.  But we also made sure to go on other vacations without any of them.

The thing that I literally couldn't understand is why even when they were in their late teens that they didn't want to go and do their own thing?  At that age I couldn't wait to ditch my parents and I was a COD.

One time we even gave them an out from having to have dinner with my Dad and SM.  I offered to give them all money to pay for the evening.  More than enough for dinner and drinks (this was in France so you can drink from 16) and they insisted that they would prefer to hang out with us.  Weird.  I would have grabbed the cash and headed out to have explore the nightlife.

I've also had a complete nightmare with one of the skids who actually was being so unpleasant that we told him to go home.  There's a blog of mine somewhere in my history about that expensive fiasco.  That was the last time anyone was invited anywhere.

SM12's picture

I planned a big trip for myself and DH last year.  He kept mentioning YSS going and I immediately said NO!!  Now I am considering a trip across country this fall and DH keeps including YSS.!!  I don't worry too much since I make all the arrangements and save the money to do these trips.   I always make a point to plan them while YSS is in school.   

Cover1W's picture

Oh yes, you alllll know about almost every vacay of ours with skids (exception was only YSD went one time and that was fun).

If I were you OP I would not even consider a 4-5 day vacation, it will be the same. I simply make DH plan all of it now if he wants to involve SDs. I don't plan and pay for no one but myself.

simifan's picture


Girl stop playing this game. Grab your bikini and head to the adult pool bar. Leave his ass with the kids and tell him to join you when he wants an adult relationship.