PARENTAL CHOICES

I Went on a 3-Week Trip Without My Kids & They’re Still Alive

“They” say I shouldn’t leave my gaffers but…

Jennifer McDougall
3 min readDec 26, 2022

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Photo by Leio McLaren on Unsplash

One person’s blueprint or way of doing things isn’t the way the whole world should do it. Kelly Winder

I went on a trip.

For almost 3 weeks.

Without my kids.

My teenagers were on their own. Well, sort of. Between grandparents and family friends my 14- and 16-year-old were unlikely to starve. Or walk anywhere farther than two blocks.

“Wanna head out west with me this summer?” I had asked my spawn a few months ago. They had first dibs. They said no.

Life changes when kids start raking in their own dough. And seeking friend opinions over the “boomer voice” who pays the mortgage and fills the fridge.

They chose home. I chose adventure.

My 5-day visit to a friend out west morphed into a 3-week road trip with my boyfriend. Our solution to the glut of rental car availability? I bought a car.

So I just needed to drive that sucker 4,480 km from one shore of this massive country to my home.

It’s been about 100 years since white women have been allowed to vote in this country. It’s five decades since women could legally take time off with their newborn and still have a job.

And yet I mention taking a holiday sans enfants and wowsers…public reaction is surprisingly Victorian.

“Mothers should never abandon their own offspring,” I heard — more than you would believe.

“Leaving solely for your own pleasure? Honestly.”

I started to question my choice. Like Kelly Winder, I asked myself:

Am I being a bad parent, abandoning them?
Or am I doing something wonderful — not only for myself but leading by example, teaching my kids that it’s important to care for yourself, as well as to follow what you desire in life? Kelly Winder

My kids chose home. I chose adventure.

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Jennifer McDougall

Attempting Serious and Satire... Sometimes successful. Editor, Doctor Funny.