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Old 15-07-2008, 13:16   #1
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Question Friends With Kids

some background, me and my boyfriend live together, have a significant age difference and live an extremely career oriented life. we aren't big fans of kids, and most of our friends don't have them. however we do have a few friends who have them, and we also boat with his sister and her small son. (but we usually raft up with them).

my question is this: what is good etiquette when the friends with children want to sail or go out with us? to say we wont take the kids seems rude and may put someone out in terms of finding a sitter etc... but we also prefer not to have kids on the boat because of obvious safety reasons, and the fact that we don't have a very child-friendly boat.

has anyone been in a situation like this? and I'm newer to boating so im not totally sure if its completely rude to have a no-kid rule on your boat.
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Old 15-07-2008, 13:21   #2
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We are in this situation all the time.

We usually say that we don't have the required life jackets if we aren't in the mood for kids on board.

The one time we did have our nephew on board with his parents, he threw some metal object across the salon with HUGE force and put a big, visible gouge in our 1 week old new teak & holly salon cabin sole.

That pretty much did it for us.

No more kids have been on here since.

PS: The mom also flushed a babywipe and broke our head, requiring a haulout to get it out (of course... it was jammed inside the seacock)
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Old 15-07-2008, 13:34   #3
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PS: The mom also flushed a babywipe and broke our head, requiring a haulout to get it out (of course... it was jammed inside the seacock)

Sounds like a friggin nightmare, the nephew I mentioned drew all over mommy and daddy's brand spanking new regal yacht's white interior with a black pen.
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Old 15-07-2008, 13:43   #4
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Sounds like a friggin nightmare, the nephew I mentioned drew all over mommy and daddy's brand spanking new regal yacht's white interior with a black pen.
Wow... scary stuff!!

My wife is also from LI (I saw your other post). The kid that threw the metal object and the mom that flushed the babywipe are from Long Beach.

So I guess my lifejacket excuse only works on non-sailors. If your friends have their own boat... you may just have to find something else, like, "our insurance won't cover it" or some other excuse. ha ha
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Old 15-07-2008, 13:59   #5
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Wow... scary stuff!!

My wife is also from LI (I saw your other post). The kid that threw the metal object and the mom that flushed the babywipe are from Long Beach.

So I guess my lifejacket excuse only works on non-sailors. If your friends have their own boat... you may just have to find something else, like, "our insurance won't cover it" or some other excuse. ha ha
yeah, my mother is living in long beach currently. small world (how cliche). we made his nephew go back to their yacht to use the bathroom! a pump toilet and a 6 year old really do not mix.
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Old 15-07-2008, 14:11   #6
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You need to kid proof your boat. That is very easy to write but very difficult to do. The life jacket is an easy fix. Netting all around the boat is not an easy fix. Children need constant attention, that a captain or mate is not able to provide. As the ankle bitter proved, hurling an object across the saloon is something that not even a mother can prevent. I had a life jacket on a grand daughter and she thought it was fun ro walk around topside while the boat was under power. If she fell over she might have been hit by the propeller. It is not easy to say no, but it has to be done if you do not feel comfortable.
John
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Old 15-07-2008, 14:23   #7
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Sounds like a friggin nightmare, the nephew I mentioned drew all over mommy and daddy's brand spanking new regal yacht's white interior with a black pen.

My advice is to find new friends without K's... really, my experience is that couples with Kids just can't relax/relate to couples without them... just the way it is...

But here is a bit of insight from personal experience... your mate may be making mental notes about attitudes towards kids...he/she may say and actually not want them either right now perferring to play, but that doesn't mean they will never want them and when the time comes, they may believe their mate, while great fun to play with, would not make a very good partner to have a family with... not to be too heavy here... go have a GREAT time now when you don't have kids cause it's a VERY different life afterwards...

cheers
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Old 15-07-2008, 14:33   #8
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My advice is to find new friends without K's... really, my experience is that couples with Kids just can't relax/relate to couples without them... just the way it is...

But here is a bit of insight from personal experience... your mate may be making mental notes about attitudes towards kids...he/she may say and actually not want them either right now perferring to play, but that doesn't mean they will never want them and when the time comes, they may believe their mate, while great fun to play with, would not make a very good partner to have a family with... not to be too heavy here... go have a GREAT time now when you don't have kids cause it's a VERY different life afterwards...

cheers
I'm sure it is, another reason is that he is a great deal older than me, our biological clocks don't quite match up LOL! just kidding, we make a good pair

but in regards to the friends with kids, we really dont hang with them often, sometimes we even hesitate to ask.
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Old 15-07-2008, 14:40   #9
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As a parent with kids I'd warn you that you risk alienating your friends with kids. I'm not saying that you should have kids on your boat b/c you don't seem to like them.

My brothers wife said that no kids were invited to their wedding. Even though my brother actually likes kids. No one in the family is interested in going to the wedding. kids and boats are fine only if you don't mind your boat not being pristine. If you want a pristine boat don't invite kids. I always talk to parents before I have kids on the boat and explain to them that I have set rules for my kids based on their experience on the boat. The guest kids may end up with more restrictive rules until they earn their stripes. If you don't like kids don't have any aboard but there is a cost to not inviting them.
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Old 15-07-2008, 15:35   #10
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I don't know what kind of kids you have had on the boat. I just returned with 2 weeks of my 7 yr old nephew on Imagine in the Bahamas. He was puking up his guts the first night out in snotty weather. He was miserable for about 10 hours until we got to smoother water.

This young guy got his sea legs, and nothing could stop him. He learned to use his snorkel, swam with everything that swims in the Bahamaian water sharks, rays, and including a Lionfish at Staniel Cay. He did what was asked of him. Including learning to use a marine toilet. He drove the dinghy, raised, and lowered the anchor. Watched with intensity the chart plotter as we entered limited areas. Drove the boat manually. I think the only thing he didn't do was cooking, and dishes.

This kid was the essence of politeness, and never complained except when he was puking, who doesn't when they're seasick? You can't imagine how proud of him I was when on depature he asked if he could return someday.
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Old 15-07-2008, 15:58   #11
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I2F:

Thats the kind of kid that gets invited back on my boat. We've had kids that we'd never invite back and kids like your nephew. I really enjoy watching kids discover new things about sailing and the sea and just discover new things in general. My kids look to swing from the halyards. Literally
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Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 15-07-2008, 16:19   #12
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This last weekend we took a family out for a short sail on our Cal 2-29. They have three small children - 5 years and younger. I don't recall if the children had ever been sailing before or not. The children all were very well behaved and it was wonderful to watch their enthusiasm and wonder as we were sailing. Simple things that we adults take for granted is an amazing thing to a small child - be it a sea lion or a gull. I wouldn't pass up the opportunity to give them the experience. I really can't think of a much more wonderful thing to give kids than the experience of sailing.
The other side of the coin as Charlie mentioned, if kids are not welcome somewhere, you may be alienating some who could be good friends. We have five children and if they are not welcome somewhere we want to go, or if we are invited and told the kids are not welcome, we don't go. Period - end of story.
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Old 15-07-2008, 17:03   #13
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Well, if they are friends (as opposed to acquaintences) it should be possible to explain to them that you go sailing to relax. And that the boat is too dangerous a place for the kids, you haven't got the required safety equipment (PFDs), you haven't done any "kidproofing" the way they would in their own homes...it just wouldn't be a good idea, much less a safe one, to bring the kids along.

If the friends get po'd and walk off, well, that's gonna happen if you don't want kids around, and they do, and you can't find a compromise.
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Old 15-07-2008, 20:35   #14
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Hi all i'm 16 and still considered a kid by some but most say that i'm alright anyhow me and my friends like to go sailing on their boats alot and when we are asked by a friend at school if he and his family can come with us we just say "maybe some other time" if we don't want them but if they ask why we tell them that were using the hobbie 20 this time and not the sloop. that usually settles it. ( even if we do use the sloop that weekend anyhow)
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Old 15-07-2008, 20:43   #15
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Hi all i'm 16 and still considered a kid by some but most say that i'm alright anyhow me and my friends like to go sailing on their boats alot and when we are asked by a friend at school if he and his family can come with us we just say "maybe some other time" if we don't want them but if they ask why we tell them that were using the hobbie 20 this time and not the sloop. that usually settles it. ( even if we do use the sloop that weekend anyhow)
My suggestion is to start telling the truth.
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