Last week Kim and I, two thirds of the Life with Tweens team, jumped on a plane headed for Bali. With our Tweens. We’ve both been here before, we’ve both traveled with our kids before. We all love Bali. None of this is overly new.
- Before you even leave home, let them be part of the planning. They are small adults now and the more you include them, the more they’ll feel like this adventure is something you are all on together, rather than something being forced upon them.
- Busy days can lead to forgetting to fit in meals. And as adults it doesn’t really matter; we’re big enough to work out when we need to eat. But for a tween, after hours swimming they tend to get super hangry. Much like a toddler actually. Just because they are bigger doesn’t mean they’ll remember to eat when they’re having fun.
- Studies show that tweens and teens need between 9 and 10 hours sleep a night. While we certainly don’t get that our house; fitting in a nap in the afternoon is a good way to try and get a few extra hours. And if you have a tween that does sleep, try an let them whenever you can. It’s their holiday too!
- Let them stay connected: wifi, i-devices, whatever takes their fancy. Like it or not, staying connected to their peers is super important to tweens and teens. If you can help facilitate this (with some balance of course!) you’ll have a happier holiday.
- This is a tip we’ve always believed to be true – maybe because we’ve got an only – but holidays are easier with two. If your tween isn’t the type to strike up a friendship with others on the side of the pool, it might be worth taking a friend or cousin.
- As much the urge to hold them close (especially when you’re away from the safe confines of home) is strong, it’s great if you can give them some independence. What that means for every family will be different; an hour by the pool by themselves, a quick walk to the corner store, ordering what they want off the dinner menu…. let them have a go. If we want to raise strong, independent adults, then it starts here.
- And at the end of the day, remember, you’re still the parent, so what you say goes. And it’s your holiday too. It’s ok to remind your tween of this occasionally, and take time out for yourself.