I have a question to all cruisers, not just parents. There are several other cruise boards where people can ask advice about all aspects of cruising. There is one area that gripes me the most and that's the area of taking very small children on cruises. I'm talking about the babies and toddlers, age 2 and younger. Those who want to take these youngsters always say, "I can't stand to leave my little one at home for a week", and the very next thing is, "even though my baby isn't three, can I still sneak him into the 3 year old program", or " how many hours maximum, of the day can I leave my child in the day care", or "do I have to take my child on shore with me or will they provide babysitters while we tour". They cannot stand to keep the baby with the grandparents but all they seem concerned about is how long can they keep them in the children's programs. I guess what really got my anger going was a question from a 30 something mother who wanted to know if it would be alright if she left her 22 month old alone in their cabin,asleep, while they went to the shows and then the casino. I mean, she said they would take along their baby monitor to see if he wakes up. I informed her that her cabin isn't secure, and that the cabin steward or someone from maintainence could open the door and walk in, and I said that there are some 2 year olds who are smart enough to open doors (can you imagine if that child woke up, opened the cabin door and began wandering the ship) Others on the board became incensed with me. Many of them emailed me that there is absolutely nothing wrong with leaving a child in the cabin as long as it was asleep. I guess I'm just an old fashioned mom who cannot believe some of the things I hear. Was I wrong with my response to this mother, or did I overreact?
Darci, I can understand if you have a gripe with children who scream at dinner, play on the lifts and run up and down the decks. Children who are unruly and parents who don't care. But if children are being good and enjoy the childrens programs which I must say are pretty good, Why do you care what other people do with their lives? Yes my boys have been the programs and loved them. Plenty of crafts and things to do. They get to meet children from all over. The teachers that run the programs are terrific. Kids Disco night is a favorite. They have story time, tea shirt coloring and kids formal night. I pay three hundred a week in NY for this kid of program. I do not dump the kids. I do love dancing with my wife and having a nice dinner alone once in a while. Can you never say you got a baby sister for you kids when you and your husband went out to dinner? I'm sorry to have to tell you this but women don't stay home any more. They go to college and have careers. The modern work ethic is work sixy hours a week and you get to keep your job. We don't have much time together as a couple or as parents. Cruising works. Please mind you own business. We work hard and we owe it to ourselves.
If you read the post carefully you will see where she is talking about children under 2 yrs old. I tend to agree with her as children that young are not going to get anything out of the cruise experiance and with the limited by space medical facilities onboard, it just doesn't seem wise to me. I also agree with her very much about leaving a child that young unattended in a cabin, asleep or not! That IMHO is child endangerment and criminal by law.
My wife and I traveled with out 17 month old back in 1998 on our third cruise. It was no problem cruising with him and we had a ball. He was well behaved in the dinning room and the waiters loved him. At night Carnival has babysiting which he played with other kids and fell asleep happy. Carnival was so wonderful that we cruised again in 2000 on the Paradise with my second son who was 20 months old. The kids rooms was larger than the previous ships we were on and both sons loved it. The childrens deck was our daily spot where the boys ran around the wading pool. I would never leave the kids alone in the cabin, but I would never leave the kids alone with my parents who live down in Florida and consider them strangers do to the fact that my parents don't want to be bothered with kids. It seems many seniors don't have time for their grandkids. Mine and my inlaws are the perfect example. A big change from the grandparents I had.
Mike, re-read the post by darci please. Your comments are absolutely non-responsive to the question posed.
Darci......Leaving a 22 month baby alone anywhere that a parent does'nt have ready access to the child could constitute child endangerment charges. Certainly, leaving a baby alone in the cabin while the parents are off doing whatever is wrong. I am really surprised others on the board "came down" on you. If I was on cruise and knew a child was left unattended in the cabin while parents were at the show or casino or wherever, I would notify ship security without any hesitation. You make very good points in your post and I agree that a cruise is no place for (read this right please) INFANTS or TODLERS.......notice I did'nt say older kids .
No surprise you would do this Rick
> Mike, re-read the post by darci please. Your comments are
> absolutely non-responsive to the question posed.
> Darci......Leaving a 22 month baby alone anywhere that a
> parent does'nt have ready access to the child could
> constitute child endangerment charges. Certainly, leaving a
> baby alone in the cabin while the parents are off doing
> whatever is wrong. I am really surprised others on the board
> "came down" on you. If I was on cruise and knew a child was
> left unattended in the cabin while parents were at the show
> or casino or wherever, I would notify ship security without
> any hesitation. You make very good points in your post and I
> agree that a cruise is no place for (read this right please)
> INFANTS or TODLERS.......notice I did'nt say older kids .
Good..I hate surprises Jeff......I know of what I speak I would report a child safety violation like that in a heartbeat......at one time I would have had the pleasure of intoducing the parent/parents to a magistrate <G>
Mike, Nowhere in my post did I say anything about older children. I think it's great that there are programs to keep the kids happy and entertained, just as the adults have the shows and casino to keep them happy. And believe me, we took our kids on many a cruise when they were older. My post was purely intended for infants and cruising. I really just got upset when the mother wanted to leave her young one alone in the cabin so she and her hubby could go out and enjoy the entertainment. Couple that with the fact that so many other parents didn't think anything was wrong with that. I say, if you need to lock your baby in the cabin, unattended, so you can have some fun, then why did you bring the baby in the first place? Parenting, as you obviously know, requires sacrifice and committment, and that is something that some, (NOTE I said some) parents don't seem to understand.
I'm sorry I got a little carried away with this post. Rick your right, I should keep focused. I've had bad experiences traveling with my parents when I was younger. My parents hated the beach which I loved. When I was a young kid, my parents idea of a vacation was traveling to some place in the sticks or looking through antique shops. I did not go to Disney untill I was 32 and with my boys. Money was not the reason for my parents. I would not let my boys spend a week of vacation torture. I have traveled for hour and hours in a car. I hate cars, except my old jeep CJ7. We like dressing for dinner, swimming in St. Thomas and being together. I guess thats why I take it so personally.
I have to agree with Rick, Robocop, and Darci. A two year old shouldn't be left alone period. Why didn't the parents take advantage of the babysitting? They could take turns at exploring what the ship has to offer separately. I feel the ship is a community of strangers that gather together for a week and then go their separate ways. Anything could happen. The cleaning staff could venture in and watch the baby, I suppose they would have to adjust the tip accordingly. cc
This is, again, one of the hottest debated posts on "Gripes." Although your post is more along the lines of leaving the child(ren) alone, the other problem people have with bringing toddlers on board is misbehavior and the imposition on other cruisers. It is a sign of our times and the culture of parenting (by some) today. The "me" generation is now parenting the way they were raised. Is it wrong, is it right, or is it just different? I've seen it so much in my business that although I don't agree with the method of child rearing I tend to ignore it since I can't do anything about it. People are going to raise their kids the way they want and intervention by others is an affront to their adulthood. If a child in endangered then I believe intervention is a must, however suspected endangerment can be interpreted in different ways by different people. Such as; if the parents left the child in the room for 3 minutes to run to the ship's store to buy the child a toy; would this be endangerment? Or, if they left the child in the room for 1/2 hour to have a quick drink at the bar; is this endangerment? Or if they left the child in the room for 2 hours for a show? Some people would set the time limit bar at one level and others would set it at a different level.
Hey Tom I think you got the Me generation all wrong. Babyboomers walked away from their family life for materialism. Thats why that Walker kid and many like him are so scewed up. When I was in high school twenty years ago, no one ever thought they were going to be shot by some kid from an affluent family. Family life is important to us, even on a ship. I have given up making more of an income to be with my sons. I'd rather give up the BMW and drive a Dodge than not know my sons. I think it's called quality of life.
Again.........is it wrong, is it right, or is it just different?
One of my waitresses, age 30, two grade school children, spoke of how screwed up the school system is because the teacher now sends home a packet of material for her to teach to her children. She says that's not her job, that's the teacher's job and that her mom didn't have to do that for her!!!!! My thinking is, what in the world do you consider to be more important in life than giving your child a good education and assisting in doing so? The night out at the bar with your friends is more important? Because your mom didn't "have" to do it is maybe the reason you are waiting tables now.
Tom I know plenty of work assosciates who are in the bars with their friends, rather than be home with their kids. Schools and education have change since I have been a student. My wife was a teacher and has seen the changes. I am home with the kids every night. I watch what they do and say. I know whats going on in their lives and plan for their future. In a way it's not really about cruising, but parenting. What we do today will reflect their future. I don't mind saying but I'm one of those parents that have the attitude "I be dammed if they get away with anything" It works! Attention+discipline=love
After a tour in the USMC, I want them to be the President of the United States. Not at the same time of course. They are ages 3 and 5. My Dad was in the USMC and I turned out just fine. I have them saying Sir yes Sir already. It's true!
This issue will come up again and again as "family cruising" becomes a larger and larger part of the cruise industry.
If people MUST cruise with children too young to be involved in the kids' programs (most of which are excellent) take your favorite babysitter along with you. Book a separate cabin for kids and "nanny." It costs more but, hey, with two incomes it's affordable.
Nanny, of course, must realize that she's on duty the WHOLE TIME unless you spell her so she can hit the disco or the beach. It's no different than babysitting in your own home.
The idea of leaving a youngster who's too young to dial a phone and ask for help ALONE is anathema to me. The idea of leaving a 2 YO alone for five minutes, let alone two hours is beyond comprehension. How selfish can people be? My kids were never left alone when small (except for the time I forgot I had a new baby that I'd left in his crib ... I figured it out about a block away from the house and broke land speed records getting back). Anyone who has survived 2 YOs can probably speak to how much they can get into in a few short minutes when your back is turned in the same house, much less when you're yucking it up in a show lounge, drinking in a bar, or contributing money in the casino.
My husband says (we don't always agree) that 98% of the time leaving a sleeping baby alone for a while -- a quick run to the local convenience store for a quart of milk -- is probably not a problem. It's the other 2% that you should worry about. I say NEVER.
More important, in my view, is that parents of bitties need to understand that ships' docs are NOT pediatricians. And medical care in ports may be less than adequate. The littlest ones can become VERYsick VERY fast.
Scenario: Mom and Dad come back from the show or the casino, after hoisting a few. Kid is asleep. All is well. Except that the kid has a fever of 105 and has passed out from fever and wailing his little brains out with nobody to comfort him or seek medical help. Mom and Dad pass out.
Think about it.
pamda -- Member of the Old School and Mom of four.
Tell us in 15 years what your boys are doing. I have to boys and as little children thay have a different attitude than they do now at 21 and 22. Guess I did something right, though they are not "mama" boys, they are good kids. NORMAL, yep, they curse, drink and watch MTV!!! They respect those that deserve respect. Those that have a mentality of understanding what is it to be a kid and a young adult. I always was able to trust my boys and still can today. WOW....don't fret, I do not live in la la land and think my boys would never do something I would find disagreement with.
Going back to the original comment......Children should not be left alone for any amount of time. Just because it was to go to the shop to buy a toy (duh...take the kid with you) compared to 2 hours in a bar..it is still the same....suppose something happened on those 2 minutes. Problem is, not to many people think AHEAD and what COULD happen. To many peopole have lost the ability to use "COMMON SENSE".
From what I have been reading, the attitude is," it is no ones business what one does on the cruise as long as it does not affect you"......because the orginal writer voiced a concern and/or opinion on the matter, she got attacted!
Guess it is just the motherly instinct to be concerned why some parents fail to think of their childs safty. Some parents think "I'll be damn if I am going to give up my vacation because of my kids. If I have to bring them, I am going anyway." Then you have the parents that will tell you "my child was so behaved, that everyone commented how good he was at the dining room table. He is just so cute, and the way he plays in his food! Oh, he is going to be an artist, he is so creative!"
I have a summer home in Wisc, and a winter place in Az. and this issue of leaving kids alone is a huge one with me. In Az, parents leave their kids alone in cars when the temp is over 100 degrees and then they are upset that the fire department is there reviving their kids. Of course, many kids die this way. Then, in Wisconsin, there was a mother who left her 20 month old in her car every day in the parking lot where she worked. She would check on him during her break and at lunch. Well, one day it was really cold outside and she still left the boy in the car, wrapped in a blanket. Oh my, was she ever surprised when she went out and found that her son died of exposure. So what happens to these parents? Unfortunately, not much. Usually just a slap on the wrist. At the same time, a man in Wisc was convicted of animal abuse when he left his dog outside and the dog froze. That man was given three years in jail while the mother was given probation. As a mom, this whole issue of neglect really bugs me to no end. Yes, the boomers are part of the problem, but now these things that are happening aren't the boomers, they're the Gen X' ers. At one time known as the slackers. These are the 20 somethings that don't seem to have a clue about parenting. So very sad........ Like they say, you need a license to drive a car, a license to catch a fish, but anyone can become a parent.
I totally agree with Darci. But I would expand that to about 5 year olds. Up until that age the vacation is strictly for the parents - leave the kids at home, or go somewhere else with them where they can enjoy themselves without being in daycare while on vacation.
And leaving a child alone!@#$@!$!@ I have a co-worker who took her 2 boys, ages 6 and 8, and a friend's boy age 7 on vacation. They were in Vegas, of all places, and wanted to go gamble. So as soon as the boys were asleep, they left for the casino!!!! Now if any of those boys woke up and wandered into the hall or elevator, I can't imagine what might have happened.
Too many parents don't actually want to be PARENTS anymore. The kids are just another possession. It's sad.
This is a big deal to me! I guess the older I get, the less I want to be around kids. ANY age. I get tired of trying to have a nice dinner with my husband or just go shopping & there they are-kids who misbehave. It is aggravating. I guess it is because my daughter-now 23-was really a good kid when we took her places. NO, she wasn't perfect every time. No kid is. Some are really good. When one is being exceptionally well behaved, I go & compliment the parents. We started taking our daughter with us when she was still in her infant seat. She knew how to behave as she grew older! But, I would have NEVER even considered taking her on a cruise! Not even at 14 or 16 years old! Especially not as an infant! I feel it is for adults! Hence-the nude sunbathing deck at the top of the ship!!!
I didn't read 100% of the replies, but, what I DIDN'T notice was a comment on what if the child, knowing how to open a door, was to open the door to the BALCONY! Provided they were in a room with a balcony. They could fall off the railing! I haven't seen the balconies yet, our first cruise is in April. I just wouldn't feel like I was being a good parent if I left my little one alone in ANY circumstance! How could one go & enjoy oneself! I couldn't!
Wouldn't you feel just horrible if you left your child ALONE in the cabin so you could spend some time alone (kind of a contradiction given the fact that you 'can't bare to leave wittle Johnny or sweet Suzy for a week!' )& came back to NO CHILD! OY!
I have the same feelings about no children on cruises as I do at weddings! Both are no place for children!
I think that if you want to take your children on a cruise, then go Disney! Even if your child is very well behaved, I still feel the same way.
Cruises used to be a luxury & a time for romance! My husband & I are going for our 25th Anniversary.
But now, they are so stinking cheap that ANYone can go!
If one INSISTS on bringing the rug rats-at least MAKE THEM BEHAVE& DON'T LEAVE THE ITSY-BITSYS ALONE EVERRRR!
Just my opinion!
You only "owe it to yourselves" if your desire to have your children with you does not interfere with the majority of cruisers who are there for a quiet "child free" vacation. If your children are well behaved and don't interfere with me or any other cruiser, then we are all willing to "mind our own business". Too often that is not the case and parents expect us to overlook unruly or annoying (normal) children's behavior because they spend so many hours away from them that they feel guilty leaving them home while they vacation from their "60 hour" a week jobs. No, women don't all stay at home anymore but many are able to defer the adult cruise vacations & spend time with their children in a more child oriented environment. Cruising is your choice but a quiet adult centered cruise environment is what the majority of cruisers pay for. All we ask is that you respect our rights while we "mind our own business".
Flo you must lighten up! I can tell you hate kids. You don't want to see them any where. Many professionials take their kids on cruises. You are just going to get your self upset because the trend is set. Every cruise line has childrens programs. My parents have the same attitude as you do. Well guess what! It has been three years since they have seen my kids and it will be another ten until they do. I am surprised that you've never cruised thus far but you have plenty to complain about kids on board. Don't travel the EOS. The kids programs are the best and we're going in April. I have done three cruises with the kids and we never had a balcony cabin. Outside yes, but balcony no. Princess wanted to give us a balcony on the Grand and we said no. I have never heard of anyone leaving their kids alone in the cabin. We have a great time on the childrens deck and at night they have themed activities for the kids.
P.S. We had children in our wedding party and as guests. They added to the occasion.
Again FloridayLvr, I fully agree with you about kids on cruises, for that matter in nice restaurants. There were not children allowed at my sons wedding last year, we have many nieces and nephews with small children and they all agreed that it's nice to have a day without the kids. We've been to weddings that allowed children, they screamed thru the whole ceremony and they dominated the entire reception. I'm not a child hater, I just feel that there is a place for them, go on a Disney cruise if you want to cruise with your children.
Wrong, my parents don't like children. They spill crumbs on the rug and make noice. I get the don't, can't and won't baby sit. My grandparents did everything with us. I would spend weeks of the summer in NYC having a ball with them. It was a different attitude than the ones these new grandparents have. Maybe because my grandparents were Europeans and family was everything. In the U.S. it's "Were going are own way". My Inlaws are from Ireland and they can't do enough for my boys. My parents forget my sons birthdays, never call and don't want to know them. I think now they were too strict. That why it will be a cold day in hell before they see them again. I've given up on them. They are retired and have plenty of time to come up and see them. Again I get the don't, can't and won't. Great way of feeling about your only grandkids. My sons Grandpa Bill can't match mine. My grand father used to take me down to the docks in NYC where the great liners used to pull in and tell me about the crossing he and my Grandma would take every year to see family in Europe. Queen Mary, Ill de France and old Queen Liz. They are the reason I have fallen in love with traveling and cruising. My Dad went with them as a kid. It's these new grandparents that became the Me Generation 25 years ago. Please prove me wrong! I think their called Baby boomers. I don't DUMP my boys when the good times come. I help bring them into the world and It's MY responsibility for their upbringing. Shame on you parents who love to DUMP YOUR KIDS. I THINK YOUR SELFISH!