By Jana Angeles
Travelling without your children can be a hassle-free way to enjoy your holiday. Saving time on changing nappies and breastfeeding would mean more time to sightsee and explore during your trip. However, there is a lot of controversy surrounding couples travelling without their child. It can become very difficult to leave your little one, especially if they have experiences with attachment issues. There really isn’t any perfect age to leave your children as it just depends on the situation. There are also some things to consider before you jet off with your partner.
Travelling without your child is never going to feel “right”
Leaving your little one behind will guarantee to make you feel terrible but at the same time, if you can’t seem to answer when you and your partner have had time together, it’s been long overdue. Maybe travelling away for a couple of days is exactly what you need to recharge and get a new perspective on things, even if it means leaving your child with an immediate caregiver/family member.
Of course, many will judge you for leaving your child behind but that doesn’t necessarily make you a “bad” parent. People have different opinions on this topic but be prepared for any criticism that may come your way. It may not be a good idea to leave your little one if they’re still relying on your breastmilk as a food source or if they’re a newborn.
Factors to consider when travelling without your child
Travelling and being apart from your child requires a lot of time planning. You can’t just make an immediate decision to travel and leave them in the care of someone else. It takes time for them to get familiar with someone, especially if it’s a person they don’t know really well. It’s even more difficult to leave your child if they have a bad case of separation anxiety.
In this case, you need to take baby steps when it comes to easing them into getting used to your absence. A lot of reassurance is needed in this case, especially if you’re leaving them with someone that isn’t an immediate family member. Test the waters and leave your child in their care for a couple of hours.
Family Member or Babysitter?
When you’re travelling as a couple, pick either a family member or a babysitter to take care of your child. As mentioned above, you might want to go through a couple of trial runs especially if your child isn’t familiar with said person. It’s best to choose someone they can recognise and if you can, let them stay at your house. Leaving your child at home will give them a place of familiarity, easing any stress if they were placed somewhere they’re not familiar with.
What food will they eat?
Let your family member or babysitter know if your child has allergies they need to be aware of when it comes to food. Supply them with an appropriate grocery list and give them ideas on meals they can easily cook for your child. Make sure it’s something that is easy to prepare with no more than eight ingredients to prep. For the younger infants, you may need to express your milk while you’re away or leave them a decent supply of formula feed. If you’re just starting to feed them solids, leave them some pureed food to eat too as another food option.
If you’re prepared to travel without your child then go for it! Never let another person’s opinion bring you down when it comes to this decision, everyone has a different perspective on it. Enjoy your time away together and take the time to do some follow up calls too just to check that everything is running smoothly. Most of all, make some memories you and your partner will cherish forever. It’s not everyday where you’re able to take time out for yourselves!