she turned this car around

A Mom Is Under Fire For Ending Her Family’s Vacation After Less Than A Day

Now she wants to know if she was in the wrong for following through on her threats.

A mom wonders if she made the right decision to end a vacation after her kids wouldn't stop misbehav...

A lot of parents have, at one low point or another, threatened to turn this car around. But probably a lot fewer parents have actually followed through with their threats. After all, doesn’t pressing the eject button on your trip have serious consequences for everyone?

Well, one mom has done it. She ended her family’s four-day vacation after less than a day because the fighting and bad behavior among her kids (particularly her 9-year-old and 8-year-old boys, she also has a 3-year-old daughter) was not improving under any circumstances.

Now with her entire family pissed at her (except her toddler) she’s wondering if she was a bit too harsh — or if she should go down in mom history for doing exactly what she said she was going to do. She took to Reddit’s always-entertaining Am I The A**hole forum to get the opinion of a few thousand internet strangers.

She opens by explaining that her kids are always pretty poorly behaved and that she was pretty sure the vacation was doomed from the start.

“The boys have been driving us crazy,” she writes. “They fight like cats and dogs. We’ve had countless talks with them about respecting each other, to no avail. I understand sibling rivalry but it’s gotten to the point it’s disruptive to us all, every day. I already told my husband last week I wasn’t sure if the vacation was a good idea. My husband shut me down pretty much immediately and things went ahead as planned.”

And then, as predicted, the vacation starts off with a super horrible long car ride.

“The 3.5 hour car ride was (predictably) hell,” she describes. “Boys fighting and riling each other up the whole time. Husband and I kept trying to reassure each other that things would be better once we got there and they would be too excited to cause trouble.”

Nope. The kids continued to be hellions.

“They had so many reminders of what not to do once we got to the rental house…so they do everything wrong from the get go,” she says. “fShoes on the white furniture? Check. Running in the house? Check. I turned my back for 2 seconds and the 8 y/o threw a box of chalk in the pool to keep his brother from getting it. We went out to lunch and they were out of control in the restaurant. 9M ran away from us in a strange place because he didn’t get his way.”

Not even a beach could keep them occupied and out of trouble.

“We finally go to the beach and they are frankly being brats. Refusing sunscreen. Fighting over toys,” she says. “Pushing their luck repeatedly going farther and farther out in the water than we told them to. Cursing.”

While her husband was still hopeful things would improve, she was pretty done already.

“By the time we got back to the house, it was around dinner time and I was fed up,” she says. “They were totally ruining it for everybody. Nothing had worked and I told my husband we needed to go home, for the reasons mentioned above, mainly that they needed to see a REAL consequence.”

When she decides to leave, her whole family is devastated, including her husband.

“I put my foot down and told him that I didn’t even want to be there at that point so either I was leaving, or we all were,” she says. “He got super pissed and told me it was ridiculous and unfair to our daughter. I actually agree with him but saw no other choice at this point. Of course when I tell the kids they immediately burst into tears and are begging to stay, promising they will behave.”

Oh, and her mom is staying in the house, too. And she was “near tears.”

“She thinks her precious grandbabies do no wrong. She argued with me too, begging me to ‘just let it go’ but I refused to budge.”

The ride home was miserable — and she’s still in the doghouse with everyone but her toddler.

“Half the ride home was spent with them sobbing and my husband pretty much gave me the silent treatment the whole way. My mother decided to stay behind a little longer but then started randomly texting me about 30 minutes in, asking if I was serious (she knew I was) and told me the whole reason she came was to spend time with the kids, so I had now ‘ruined it for everybody’ and ‘they’re only little once.’”

So, did Reddit think she was in the wrong?

The overall verdict was that mom was not the a**hole for giving her kids consequences and then following through with them.

“We would have backed the truck up and gone home if this is how they behaved too,” one wrote. “My dad always would say to us you can do anything you want, you just have to deal with the consequences. Then he’d set the stage for what would happen and he’d follow through every time. Our kids knew the same. Listen and behave, or we are going home.”

Others, though, were more critical, pointing out that if she had given the kids smaller consequences sooner, the family could have easily salvaged the trip.

“I couldn't believe I read this whole thing and she didn't set a consequence until they left,” one wrote. “Won't put on sunblock at the beach? they have to go back up to the house... Get too far out into the water? They can't go in the water for the rest of the day... Put their shoes on the furniture? Why aren't they taking their shoes off at the door?”

Good point.

“Perhaps had they actually parented their children for the last 8/9yrs then this wouldn't have been an issue. Sounds to me like the kids are AH because they lack boundaries and when boundaries are broken their parents lack any skills to deal with it appropriately,” another wrote.

Another reader had a good idea to save the vacation: “Could have assigned one parent / grandparent per child and taken them on separate activities, rotates every few hours, kept the boys apart and had a little more peace,” they wrote.

Of course, all of these ideas are easy to think of when you aren’t in the moment of the worst vacation ever. When in doubt, cut parents some slack and just show some empathy for their situation.