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Old 19-06-2014, 16:21   #16
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?


"Boyfriend"? "Unable to afford to retire now?" Chances of being able to work again after a 5 yr. or ??? hiatus? Don't kid yourself. I know it's hard for over 50's men, but I believe it's harder for the women. I don't know how practical you are, but have you considered some kind of a quid pro quo deal with your boyfriend? Would it help you to run the numbers? It seems to me that there are at least 3 issues here: 1, relationship with son; 2, not happy with present job, may lack funding, and relationship with boyfriend. Maybe considering each separately might help you. Write your thoughts down, helps to clarify.

That you have brought this to a forum is interesting in itself. Why have you not yet worked out a solution without involving strangers? What you propose, is like jumping off the cliff without a parachute, to me. If the man is not a keeper (if he turns down the bargain offered above), then why do you wish to prolong the relationship?

Please, I am not meaning to be overly hard on you, but I am thinking that you will be benefitted by doing some deep thinking on the whole situation. Some of the decisions are yours alone to make, but in terms of having a good future relationship with your son, he should be included in what will have the most effect on him.


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Old 19-06-2014, 17:35   #17
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

In the days of Hellicopter Parents, 30-somethings living with their folks, and "kids" in their 30's refusing to grow up, I say GO and give your son the chance to GROW UP! Once upon a grew up when they graduated from High School.....
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Old 19-06-2014, 17:46   #18
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

If you are having to ask the question, you are not ready.
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Old 19-06-2014, 17:55   #19
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY View Post
In the days of Hellicopter Parents, 30-somethings living with their folks, and "kids" in their 30's refusing to grow up, I say GO and give your son the chance to GROW UP! Once upon a grew up when they graduated from High School.....

I agree. When I left for college my Dad gave me a dime and said "Call me any time you want, I'll give you the best advice I can." I left Minn. and my parents moved to a small town in the middle of Nebraska. I turned out OK. Really... I'M OK! I think......
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Old 19-06-2014, 18:01   #20
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

I would never tell anyone what to do with their life but I will tell you a little about mine.
My parents separated in my last year of High School. They divorced in my first year of college. They were not happy together, I get it, but I was "homeless" at a point in time when sometimes it would have been nice to have a home, my home, instead of two different condominiums, and stability instead of both parents beginning the rest of their lives, seperatly. At 17 I was not an adult, I was still a kid. I can tell you that homeless feeling affected me and the rest of my life. I never got over it.
Everything worked out; I've been happily married for 31 years and our oldest just graduated from college. We know our daughter needed a base to work from and she is now out on her own. At 17 this would not have worked out well.
It's a tough deal. What is best for us is not always best for our children and vis versa. If you are on a forum asking about this I think you know what the answer is. Be well.
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Old 19-06-2014, 19:30   #21
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

Regarding your son, we faced a similar dilemma. Our son was 17 when I first started getting the itch. We started getting educated, sailing more, and talking about it, I'm guessing at about the same time, but certainly by the time he was 18 and entering his freshman year. We departed when he was 20 and a junior. During that period, we kept him well informed of our plans, in a matter-of-fact manner, but not in a way that could be perceived as granting him a veto. (That doesn't mean we wouldn't have aborted or postponed our plans if we thought it would be a problem. We certainly would have, but not by giving him a message that it would have been up to him.)

We told him the same sort of things -- we flew him (and his girlfriend) to where we happened to be for holidays, and occasionally we were back home, too. We made sure that he was well informed about how to get in touch with us (including sat phone, if necessary), and we made a point to Skype him whenever possible, as well as email.

We had planned to stay out for 5 years, but that got cut short when the economy (and our investment income) tanked. Now, fortunately, although I was 53 when we left, I have a rather esoteric profession and was able to quickly resume work. But, if the work/income/savings business is iffy for you, then you might want to seriously think and plan some for that. (We did get 2 years in, and had a great time, just not as much as hoped for.)

Back to your son, though. The process of individuation is not necessarily consistent between different people, and different children may need different things at different times. Only you (with talks with your son) can assess that. Having recently lost his father, though, may have complicated that a great deal.

I suggest you read and think about the following two articles that describe the developmental tasks that your son has been facing, both recently and in the near future. Think them over and do a little informal assessment. It might help you figure out where he stands.

The Successful Parent | Early Adolescence: The Point of No Return - Part I |
Trial Independence (18 - 23) = Struggling to catch hold | Psychology Today

There can be some big differences between 18 and 20. At 18, and a freshman, he's going to be exposed to lots of things. Kids that do well already have a well established sense of self, their values, what is acceptable behavior (for them) and what isn't. They also have relatively good impulse control - even though sometimes they won’t resist the impulse! That's part of it, too. But, they've got enough "sense" to recognize bad situations before (or soon after) they get into them, as well as enough stick-to-it-tive-ness to persevere with work/studies without needing parental structure. Kids that don't do well don't yet have those qualities. (It's part of development, and maturation just happens at a different pace.) They might also have problems controlling alcohol/drugs, risky behavior, and regulating their emotions. Also, keep in mind that the period between about 15 and 25 is a time when the onset of many serious mental illnesses is at a peak. So, if any of those things are present, then great caution is warranted and the security of Mom will be even more important.

By 20, most kids are well along in that process. Assuming none of the really hard problems are present, he will be much more likely to view your adventure as a cool thing -- AND, you are more of a role model than an authority figure. That's an important difference, as you taking care of yourself and following your dreams becomes something for him to emulate, rather than resent. If you can accomplish that, then you will have earned several gold stars as a parent.

Now, allow me to brag a bit. Our son handled it all quite well. One of our parenting strategies since he was very young was to allow him enough leeway to make his own decisions for himself, as they were developmentally appropriate, while challenging him just a bit beyond. When we first started talking about cruising, he was a bit taken aback by that (even though, at the time, he certainly wouldn't admit it!). But, we could tell that the wheels were turning! Shortly after, still when he was 18, he announced that he had decided to go into the Peace Corps after finishing his Bachelor's degree. By the time we were set to throw off the docklines, he was quite independent with his studies, making good grades without any feedback from us, had established (and lost, and recovered from) a couple of relationships, and had a good plan for himself, of his own making. Shortly after our return, he graduated. And, yes, he was accepted into the Peace Corps. In the months before his PC departure, he bicycled solo across the US. Since returning from the Peace Corps (If you don’t think that’s tough, then imagine yourself being set down in a very different culture, with an unwritten language you don’t know, pretty much by yourself, eating food you’ve never seen before, no electricity, no running water, and an important job to accomplish – in 27 months. That’s pretty gutsy.) Anyway, he faced the awful job situation for young adults and persevered. He's now putting himself through grad school, paying for it all himself and keeping a decent savings account, too. And about to marry a fine young woman, too. Yeah, we’re proud.

Now, it wasn't us taking off on a cruise that did that, but I do think it helped. When he was ready for it, it gave him the message that he was capable of dealing with life, on his own, and that we were confident in his ability to do it. That, in turn, resulted in him feeling confident, too, and that makes a world of difference.

Sorry about the long length, but I hope this helps.

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Old 20-06-2014, 05:26   #22
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

Thanks! Others I have spoken to have said this exactly. How fun to visit mom "everywhere"!

Originally Posted by weavis View Post
Kids are expensive period.
It will be cheaper to fly him to where you are than paying for a home and all that goes with it.

"Where you going for break kid?"
Oh.. Bahamas........ Mexico, Hawaii............"

you guess what he will go for.........
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Old 20-06-2014, 05:44   #23
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

In 10 years you will be 64, how would you feel if you had missed the opportunity? Every older cruising couple we have ever met all say the same thing. We wish we had started sooner!
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Old 20-06-2014, 06:18   #24
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

It completely depends on the child, and also the parenting style to date. With dad often driving the process to go cruising, lots of moms feel like they are abandoning their kids. It's biological and emotional, and what your entire life has been oriented towards for years now. Especially given the circumstances you described.
It's been said, but a good talk with him should be helpful. Lots of kids would want their parent to go off and have a good time. Others not so much. If he is going to college, he is going to be preoccupied and hopefully will not need much of mom, except staying in touch some and keeping tabs on his experience, and maybe a fafsa here and there. He should learn to do his own, really.

You should try to do it if possible. It's far from abandonment although it may feel that way to you. Chances are that you have sacrificed a lot to this point. Go have a good time if you think you can do that, and not beat yourself up along the way. My wife feels the same way. It has always been hard to plan retirement cruising with her because it's hard to leave the kids behind, although the one in college is a serious superstar, the younger 16 yo brother unconsciously following in footsteps, and no problems from him yet.

I worked hard as a parent to make sure my kids are prepared and independent. That's my gift to them. I don't want to miss out on Important stuff and honestly don't know that I'll be able to see them as much as we like when we are in a far away port. In our case, being very young parents, our kids recognize how much we sacrificed and are supportive of us spending good time together. We barely made it twenty years so far and are seperated again! There are probably some good options for places he can go and stay and the college may also accommodate. It's not forever, but if you feel like you can swing it financially, and really want to go, you should do it.

Can you rent the house in case it's not for you, so you can come home?

Best of luck
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Old 20-06-2014, 06:34   #25
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

This is a lot more about finances than it is about the children.
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Old 20-06-2014, 07:24   #26
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

Intentional Drifter...Wow, I wish I could have said that.

MBWOMAN I think you just got some professional advice for free.
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Old 20-06-2014, 07:39   #27
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

My grandpa went off to World War II when he was 17. On a submarine in the Pacific when he was 18. That generation had to grow up pretty quick, and they managed.

Others have commented on finances, but what I got out of the original post is that you do have the ability to do it now, with the boyfriend. The problem might be later on 'after' the boyfriend, when prime earning years are spent afloat. Everyone I've ever talked to on this subject said 'go now'. I even posted a question before on whether to go as soon as my high school-er gets in to college in 2 years, or wait 5 years to earn some cash while being empty-nesters - and I had half the folks telling me to GO NOW.. I guess I was supposed to just leave my daughter with 2 years left in high school with some friends? lol. I think it just stresses everybody's attitude - 'wish we'd gone sooner'.

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Old 20-06-2014, 08:23   #28
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

Originally Posted by cheoah View Post
I worked hard as a parent to make sure my kids are prepared and independent. That's my gift to them.
The only really IMPORTANT gift that you can give a child.
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Old 20-06-2014, 08:39   #29
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If your children do not become independent barring any developmental issues then you have failed them as a parent. Unfortunately i am seeing more young adults fail to thrive on there own . The economic woes of the world are not helping either.
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Old 20-06-2014, 08:46   #30
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Re: Am I Deserting My Young Adults?

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