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Do I take my dd with me or not?

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My sister is due to have her 2nd baby in a little over 2 weeks. While I planned to visit once the baby was born, last night I offered to come down earlier and help her out. I have some airline miles which I will use so that i do not have to worry about the price of a ticket. They live in Texas and we live in NC. She hasn't said whether she wants me to come down or not and this question would still apply for just going to visit after the baby too.


My husband is happy (ok, maybe not HAPPY, but easily willing) to stay home with the four kids (5 with the foreign exchange student) and work from home while I am gone. I am sooooooooooooooooooooo in need of a break too. I have been stressed and hormonal lately. Not a good combination ;)


While I kinda wish I could take the kids with me (so they could see family), it is cost prohibitive (plus again, I could use the break). However, I was wondering if I should take my 5 yo dd with me. She has been acting out, a LOT, lately and I am wondering if a few weeks with me and no other siblings (well, we would be helping with my sisters 3 yo also) would be good for her (and us in general).


I worry about:


1) Needing the break and taking my dd with me wouldn't really be a break huh? Her acting out is one of the reasons I need a break.


2) Since I would only be taking one of my 4 children, I would feel kinda bad.


3) Well, just 1 and 2 :o


WWYD? I know one thing for sure: I will miss all my kids terribly while I am gone.

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Who are you taking the trip for? Your sister, you, or your daughter?


I definitely understand why it might be good for your daughter to have some alone-time with Mommy while she's going through a difficult phase -- and without the other kids around, you might have more of a chance to focus on making her feel loved and also on dealing with discipline or attitude problems.


*But* you say you're going to help out your sister with a new baby -- either at the end of her pregnancy or just after the baby is born. I'm going to assume, of course, that your sister adores all of your precious children, including the 5yo (and I have a 5yo dd myself, so I know how utterly wonderful and utterly horrid they can be, sometimes in the same moment, lol) -- *but* she needs this time to focus on her own children... Not to be worried about your dd who is admittedly not on her best behavior right now. Her hormones will kick in and she'll feel even more protective of her children than usual, and your time will be split between your sister and your daughter, and nobody is going to get the time or attention they need, least of all *you*.


Normally, I'm all for taking our kids places and training them to behave in any circumstance.


But right now, I say *if* your sister wants you to come, leave the 5yo at home with Daddy and you just go and focus on your serving your sister and her family.


And maybe you'll even come home refreshed and more ready to take on the task of loving and disciplining the 5yo. And who knows, maybe the break will do her good too. ;) She'll be so glad to see you when you come back... ;)

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Keep in mind that I can only answer from my own perspective - - I personally think 5 is very young to be without mom for several weeks (can't remember how old the other kids are), even if dad is the one staying with her.


Neither dh nor I would be away from the kids for that length of time unless it was unavoidable, and as much as I love my sister, her having a baby isn't an emergency, kwim? It's her second one; she's not even a rookie :D


Also, dad will be home, but he'll be WORKING. I think that may be more stressful than you guys are anticipating.


Instead, can you take a REAL break for a shorter period of time, say a long weekend? Leave dh home with the kids and go to a hotel near by, or a friend's house. Maybe also take a day to focus on dd. Two or three shorter breaks is more doable than one very long one. Then, when your sister has the baby, go to her for a much shorter period of time, a week or ten days.

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Instead, can you take a REAL break for a shorter period of time, say a long weekend? Leave dh home with the kids and go to a hotel near by, or a friend's house. Maybe also take a day to focus on dd. Two or three shorter breaks is more doable than one very long one. Then, when your sister has the baby, go to her for a much shorter period of time, a week or ten days.


I agree with everything that katilac said. Shorter stay after baby is born as well as a break for you on a day that your dh doesn't have to work and focus on the kids. Maybe your 5 yr old is feeling left out in regards to the other siblings. I agree with taking a day to focus on her.



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I would probably take the 5y/o with me for several reasons:

a) some one-on-one time is invaluable

b) will take some of the shock off the 3y/o cousin

c) ease for DH to care for older kiddos


SInce my children were babies, I've often taken just 1 or 2 while DH keeps the others. It's wonderful bonding time and something the other sibs look forward to doing at another time.


fwiw, when my triplets were born, our oldest DC were almost 2 & 3y/o. DSIL brought her 2y/o w/ her while she helped during the pregnancy. It was tough, sometimes, having three toddlers, but a wonderful bonding experience for cousins who seldom spend time together. We have great memories of that summer.


Where in TX does your sister live?


Good luck,

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I am still a little undecided. As Peggy mentioned (and I didn't!), one of the pluses of bringing my daughter with me was to help occupy her 3 year old cousin. We have no other young family members where my sister lives (the youngest is almost 10). - She lives in Ft Worth by the way. My whole family is there (or will be in about a month when my sister and her gf move back)


I would probably only be gone about 10 days. It would be the longest I have been away from the children. Both my hubby and me were gone about a week to pick up my 5yo dd from Korea and I was gone for about a week to pick up our youngest daughter from Korea. Otherwise, we are rarely ever away from our children. We do not use babysitters and they do not often do sleepovers, and even then it is with another family we are close to.


I am not too worried about hubby working from home. He usually works from home 1 to 2 days a week. I often go on errands while he is home. Yes, the tv and computer are used a little more when he is in charge but since TV time is VERY limited, it is a nice treat. Since we have a foreign exchange student with us, she will be able to help him out minimally and if he needs to go to the store (or just run away!), he can leave her in charge for a few minutes. (we rarely leave her in charge...I have a few times to run to the store and that is it).


abbeyej, your point is the biggest crux in my thoughts. I am offering my services to my sister (and to see my family who I haven't seen since last July) to help her out. If I bring my dd, I will then be responsible for her also. It may defeat the purpose a little. However, again, I think the diversion to her 3 year old son might outweigh that concern. My original plan was to wait til she popped and then head on over there for about 5 days, staying with my parents. If I do this, I would more likely stay with her (and honestly, that is MUCH preferable than staying with my parents! I always spend the first day there cleaning) and obviously stay a bit longer. There of course is always the chance that I book flights and she doesn't have the baby while I am there! Oi! She thinks he will be coming soon and her body is moving on to getting ready. We sisters have all had early 2nd babies, with both me and my sister having our 2nd's 4 and 5 weeks early)


Thanks again for the thoughts and ideas! Not sure what I will do yet but the thoughts are a start! :)

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