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Old 04-05-2019, 11:01 AM
 
3,337 posts, read 3,116,610 times
Reputation: 3787

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Your parents could have been arrested. It sounds like one of those, "what could go wrong" things that we read about on here sometimes. You know things can and do go wrong. (Not implying your parents did anything wrong, just sayin'.)
Well yes but you could get hurt walking down the sidewalk. Who wants to live in fear and what could wrong and instead take advantage of the opportunities.

My child's whole 5th grade class ( around 160 kids) are on a 2 night adventure at a Y run overnight camp. They've been gone for 2 days (and have plenty of chaperones). It's an experience they will never forget. You have to let your kids grow up and give them age appropriate freedoms so they don't go off into the world and have no clue of what to do without mom or dad.
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Old 04-05-2019, 08:17 PM
 
367 posts, read 72,083 times
Reputation: 713
Quote:
Originally Posted by cddweller View Post
...My son would be staying with families I don’t know all that well...

...I really don’t want him to go per the above reasons however people feel I’m being over protective. I could go as well but I don’t have a ton of vacation time and would have to get a hotel for 3 nights or fly but then that’s an additional 500 , I’m a single parent so funds are a bit tight. I’m a little surprised all of the other parents have been 100% onboard. Am I being too protective and unreasonable? My son is going to be pretty upset if I don’t let him go.
You are the parent. What other parents think or do and what your child thinks or feel should not be your concern. What is best for your child is your concern and the locus of you life at present.

You are right to be concerned, IMO, people are insane to allow their children to stay at a strangers house or to put strangers, acquaintances, or even certain relatives in the care, custody and control of their offspring.

Here is a minor research assignment, search city-data for threads on pedophilia, child brides, and child sex, then read them. I think you might be shocked to find out how many posters think it is fine for a 30 year old man to have sex with a 13 or 15 year old. Marijuana use has now been normalized, transgendered thingies are out there, homosexuality is mainstreamed, piercings and body art is all the rage. I mention all this because, simply put, you do not know these people. The minute you relinquish control over your child you lost the ability to assist them in navigating new concepts as they are presented to them and in the context they are presented. I think anyone who allows a stranger around their child is nuts - period.

You don’t indicate what your local support network is, but if I had relatives or someone I trust in the area to watch my child I certainly would consider going with and off-setting the financial burden with second job over a few weekends (hence why I asked if you had someone who could watch your son). I would also use that as a prime opportunity to go over the family finances with your son, explain budgeting, and that this trip was off budget so you have to finance it with a bit of additional work. You might even stick him with balancing your checkbook each month (hint, hint). It is never too early to teach a child about responsible financial management.

We were protective of our children, all are now adults, healthy, well-adjusted and reflect a rather cohesive set of values. I believe the latter is because we were with them when they encountered new things and were able to give them a perspective and discuss matters in a timely fashion. Our children frequently comment how lucky they feel to have been raised by us when they discuss childhoods with co-workers and friends. All of our children started college at an early age. In spite of our protective nature they were able to navigate the world of young adults with confidence and made choices we are proud of. So protectiveness does not have to infantilize a child.

Being a single parent is not easy, trust in your instincts.

Last edited by GhostOfAndrewJackson; 04-05-2019 at 08:37 PM..
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Old 04-05-2019, 08:51 PM
 
25,360 posts, read 32,334,425 times
Reputation: 30888
Quote:
Originally Posted by cddweller View Post
My sonís robotics team wants to compete in a competition next month. I am the only parent on the team who has any concerns, of which I have several.
1. He will miss 3 days of school to attend (this is not a school club)
2 The trip is 10 hours, not including stops for potty, gas, food in a rented van
3. The kids will return from the trip around 1am Sunday night in a van with inexperienced large vehicle drivers
4. Cost 700
5. My son would be staying with families I donít know all that well

I really donít want him to go per the above reasons however people feel Iím being over protective. I could go as well but I donít have a ton of vacation time and would have to get a hotel for 3 nights or fly but then thatís an additional 500 , Iím a single parent so funds are a bit tight. Iím a little surprised all of the other parents have been 100% onboard. Am I being too protective and unreasonable? My son is going to be pretty upset if I donít let him go.
Not knowing the families, and the inexperienced drivers would make it a no-go for me.
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Old 04-05-2019, 08:55 PM
 
13,078 posts, read 20,459,198 times
Reputation: 35033
Assuming you can swing the costs, I would let him go. That seems like a great interest to nurture. It isn't at all uncommon for kids that age to travel with other adults, all three of mine did, to Boston, Atlanta, Nashville, and even Disney.

I understand your concern about the drivers, but it sounds as though there will be more than one according to your OP. While in college one of my kids drove a 15 passenger van full of students to aid in the cleanup efforts after a hurricane in Mississippi. He had never driven anything larger than a Jeep before that, and he did fine.

Make sure the chaperones have contact information in case of an unlikely emergency, and wish your son's team luck at the competition.
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Old 04-05-2019, 09:03 PM
 
11,030 posts, read 8,125,186 times
Reputation: 19688
As a single mom of two sons (now grown) I can totally sympathize. It was my job to protect them and I did what I felt was right.
Here's what I would do (if you can swing it financially - and he may need to chip in on some chores to help pay).
If he thinks he's responsible enough then he needs to let you give him a safety briefing. He has to listen and take it seriously. I'd include how to spot predators. Sorry. You don't know those people.
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Old 04-05-2019, 10:19 PM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
233 posts, read 89,519 times
Reputation: 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by hunterseat View Post
As a single mom of two sons (now grown) I can totally sympathize. It was my job to protect them and I did what I felt was right.
Here's what I would do (if you can swing it financially - and he may need to chip in on some chores to help pay).
If he thinks he's responsible enough then he needs to let you give him a safety briefing. He has to listen and take it seriously. I'd include how to spot predators. Sorry. You don't know those people.

The whole how to spot predators lecture usually ends up being a stereotyping lecture basically saying, "be afraid of all men." I'd skip that part.
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Old 04-06-2019, 03:04 PM
 
444 posts, read 439,096 times
Reputation: 767
The school my children went to sent all 4th graders on a three day nature trip. They did allow parent chaperones. In 6th grade the trip was a week, and no parents allowed. Both kids remember it fondly. One child also spent lots of summers away at various competitions and camps. The other took lots of Girl Scout trips in elementary school. Again, it worked out well.

I’d get to know the other parents better. I’d also try and make this first one. It will make you and your son more comfortable on trips like this. You also may find some of them are very competent drivers. For instance, when my kids were in school I drove a sedan. But I worked my way through college driving buses.
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Old 04-06-2019, 04:39 PM
 
Location: California
30,317 posts, read 32,985,835 times
Reputation: 25767
Maybe your son should be on the robotics team if you/he aren't up for this sort of stuff.
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Old 04-06-2019, 04:58 PM
 
18 posts, read 2,096 times
Reputation: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by cddweller View Post
My sonís robotics team wants to compete in a competition next month. I am the only parent on the team who has any concerns, of which I have several.
1. He will miss 3 days of school to attend (this is not a school club)
2 The trip is 10 hours, not including stops for potty, gas, food in a rented van
3. The kids will return from the trip around 1am Sunday night in a van with inexperienced large vehicle drivers
4. Cost 700
5. My son would be staying with families I donít know all that well

I really donít want him to go per the above reasons however people feel Iím being over protective. I could go as well but I donít have a ton of vacation time and would have to get a hotel for 3 nights or fly but then thatís an additional 500 , Iím a single parent so funds are a bit tight. Iím a little surprised all of the other parents have been 100% onboard. Am I being too protective and unreasonable? My son is going to be pretty upset if I donít let him go.
You can ask the school authorities, or the robotics club teachers, about their vetting process for the host families, find out how the chaperoning will work, and all that.

Not sure about the inexperienced large vehicle drivers. Did the school approve that? What do other parents say?
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Old 04-06-2019, 07:24 PM
 
3,454 posts, read 3,044,402 times
Reputation: 10283
When I volunteer at the school each year, I have to hand over my driver's license so they can run me through some sort of background check. Ask the teacher who is the sponsor for the club if a background check has been done. That may help you feel a little better about it.
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