It is normal for most parents to feel guilt when travelling without their young children. However, after working hard looking after your child every day, you are allowed to take some time away alone or with friends, and leave your child at home! Parents are used to choosing holidays with kids and putting their children’s needs above their own, so it can feel strange taking a much-needed break. Here, we look at three great ways to help you prepare to travel without your toddler, whether it is the first time you will be leaving them or not.
Tips How to Prepare for Holiday away from Your Children
1. Keep Your Child’s Routine Normal
Plan your trip for a time when there will be no big changes at home, such as potty training or starting nursery. Ensure the person who will be caring for your child when you are away knows their routines, such as when they have a nap, when they have lunch and what they do in the evening before going to bed. However, you can plan some fun activities for them to do when you are gone, such as going to soft play, having play dates or anything else they enjoy.
2. Prepare Your Toddler by Talking About the Trip
Depending on your child’s age and level of vocabulary and understanding, start to tell them about your holiday around a week before you are due to leave. Toddlers don’t really understand the concept of time, so gently remind them about your trip regularly. Answer any questions they might have, and let them help you prepare. They can help you pack, or they can tell you what you should do when you are there, or even tell you what you should have for dinner! You should also explain to your child why they can’t come with you, but remind them that you love spending time with them and will miss them when you are away.
You should never leave without saying anything, but it’s important not to draw out the goodbyes too much either. Your child might fuss and cry when it’s time to go, but it’s likely they will stop as soon as you are out of sight. It might be better to say goodbye at home rather than bringing them to the airport with you, as this can lead to great upset when they can’t come with you.
3. Plan Something Fun for when you Return
Your toddler will be eagerly awaiting your return, so make sure you plan some time with them as soon as you get back. Doing the laundry can wait, so can answering work emails, so just give your little one a big hug and let them choose what you should play! Of course, you might be tired after your journey so even just playing with your toddlers favourite toys at home will be a lot of fun for them. You could also plan a special day out doing your child’s favourite activity or eating at their favourite place a few days after you get back. Even going out for an ice cream is a great treat after being apart for a few days!