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post #1 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Vacation Without the Spouse

Here is an issue that many write about but I still struggle with it. My wife is going on a month long vacation to Europe without me. I work and can't take that long. Also, the time she is going is the height of the season... The ticket is north of $1800, with at least another $1500 for living expenses. We can afford it but I see that as an individual draining the family budget without thinking of the family. I would rather save this money for a family vacation, or a couple retreat.

She says she needs her time with a friend in Europe. The friend has a special occasion coming up so we can't pick a more reasonable time. Because she is going for to Europe for some girl time with her friend, she asked about sticking around another 4 weeks with our daughter who is spending a month to visit friends in Europe on her own dime as a post graduation treat. I can see a weekend with the girls, and spending a reasonable chuck of change but $3000 for a month trip through Europe without your spouse seems selfish.

I get the mother daughter joy, but honestly it really bothers me that she would choose to spend so much money and time away. I would never suggest doing this. I would never draw that much money from the family budget for "my" trip and leave my spouse behind. So there is some emotional hurt there as well.

This is the third time that she has gone on an expensive vacation without me in our 25 years of marriage. The first two times it created a lot of fighting. She went regardless. This time I reminded her how this hurt me, but she needs this and is not changing her mind. So I am trying to be supportive (I will make work adjustments to watch the youngest kids while she is gone) and I try to out on a smile.

Honestly, though, I want nothing to do with her right now. I want to just focus on the kids and avoid conversations where she and the daughter talk excitedly about this trip (that I am paying for as the principal earner) and avoid the situation altogether but that risks me coming across at sulking or being pouty (not attractive).

I know about self-validation. But choosing to do this over and over when you know the effect it has on your spouse makes me question her value system. But then she might see me as needy. Fine, go have some fun for a weekend or that but more than $3000 of our money on yourself and leaving the rest of us behind?

How do you cope effectively without harming the relationship?

I am trying to be mature and not overreact by spending $3k on a trip for myself or canceling family vacations planned going forward because she spent the money on herself. I know... Childish.

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post #2 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:23 PM
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Vacation Without the Spouse

Well if it were me I would tell her that her stuff will be in storage, the locks will be changed on the house and see her in court. She will not stop without consequences and you have given her none. Sounds like entitled princess syndrome to me.


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post #3 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:25 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

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How do you cope effectively without harming the relationship?
The relationship is already harmed.

There are serious problems here. The vacation without you is only the tip of the iceberg.
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post #4 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:45 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

Your wife sounds like an entitled b!tch, quite frankly.

But then, we only have your side of the story, and you have no posting history we can look up for more info.

You say you are paying, but it isn't clear if you are paying for her month with her friend, or the month with your daughter??

Frankly, if you're paying for ANY of it, WHY??? You don't support it, your wife is doing it against your wishes, so why would you pay?
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post #5 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:47 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

Three times in 25 years is not very often. I don't like the way you think of the money as yours being the primary earner. You have been together 25 years. You should think of all the money as your families money.

Going away for a month is quite a long time. That is the only thing I would have an issue with. $3000 isn't that much for that long of a holiday.

I go away once or twice a year for 4 to 7 days to go golfing with buddies. My wife has gone for a few days with girlfriends as well.

The only question I have is about your daughter. She is going to Europe to spend time with friends for a month. Does she really want her mother with her the entire time? If one of my kids was going to Europe to see friends and I was there at the same time, I could see myself spending a few days with them, but not 4 weeks.

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post #6 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:48 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

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Well if it were me I would tell her that her stuff will be in storage, the locks will be changed on the house and see her in court. She will not stop without consequences and you have given her none. Sounds like entitled princess syndrome to me.
Well of course that's another way to do it.

Take no prisoners!
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post #7 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:52 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

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I go away once or twice a year for 4 to 7 days to go golfing with buddies. My wife has gone for a few days with girlfriends as well
4 to 7 days is WAY different than a month. Also, do you and your wife both agree that this is OK? If so, fine - there's no issue. But there IS an issue if one or the other partner doesn't agree with these separate vacations. What works for one couple may not work for another.
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post #8 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:57 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

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Here is an issue that many write about but I still struggle with it. My wife is going on a month long vacation to Europe without me. I work and can't take that long. Also, the time she is going is the height of the season... The ticket is north of $1800, with at least another $1500 for living expenses. We can afford it but I see that as an individual draining the family budget without thinking of the family. I would rather save this money for a family vacation, or a couple retreat.

She says she needs her time with a friend in Europe. The friend has a special occasion coming up so we can't pick a more reasonable time. Because she is going for to Europe for some girl time with her friend, she asked about sticking around another 4 weeks with our daughter who is spending a month to visit friends in Europe on her own dime as a post graduation treat. I can see a weekend with the girls, and spending a reasonable chuck of change but $3000 for a month trip through Europe without your spouse seems selfish.

I get the mother daughter joy, but honestly it really bothers me that she would choose to spend so much money and time away. I would never suggest doing this. I would never draw that much money from the family budget for "my" trip and leave my spouse behind. So there is some emotional hurt there as well.

This is the third time that she has gone on an expensive vacation without me in our 25 years of marriage. The first two times it created a lot of fighting. She went regardless. This time I reminded her how this hurt me, but she needs this and is not changing her mind. So I am trying to be supportive (I will make work adjustments to watch the youngest kids while she is gone) and I try to out on a smile.

Honestly, though, I want nothing to do with her right now. I want to just focus on the kids and avoid conversations where she and the daughter talk excitedly about this trip (that I am paying for as the principal earner) and avoid the situation altogether but that risks me coming across at sulking or being pouty (not attractive).

I know about self-validation. But choosing to do this over and over when you know the effect it has on your spouse makes me question her value system. But then she might see me as needy. Fine, go have some fun for a weekend or that but more than $3000 of our money on yourself and leaving the rest of us behind?

How do you cope effectively without harming the relationship?

I am trying to be mature and not overreact by spending $3k on a trip for myself or canceling family vacations planned going forward because she spent the money on herself. I know... Childish.
Well, let's see. I am quite good at parsing the messages that are hidden amidst words.

What message do I perceive that your wife is sending?

It's a bold, simple message:

It's this: "F**k you! And f**k the younger children!"

Would cancelling the family vacation really be childish? Actually, I do not see it that way.

It's certainly a rational response to the despicable and selfish actions of your wife.

Has she suggested any way to make it up to the younger children?

Or is that your job, too?

What might be possible is to book a Christmas vacation for you and the younger children and leave your wife at home.

Or a cheaper option, book you and the younger children into a hotel for a week or two starting on the exact day your wife is due back and have a mini-break.

Your wife is disrespecting you and she is disrespecting your younger children.

There's something that doesn't smell right, here. I'm not saying it is cheating, but it smells wrong.
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post #9 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:04 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

This was a problem early in our marriage when we were still in the honeymoon stage and couldn't get enough of each other. My wife was oldest, and her parents couldn't figure out why she shouldn't continue going on family vacations with them. Now at nearly 30 years and no kids at home, I could use the break some times. In fact my first reaction to this question was, "Go ahead Dear, you won't mind If I pick up that new shotgun while you are gone, will you?" (no, I'm not thinking of spending anywhere near $3000 on a gun)

Last year we spent a week apart and a week together, and I enjoyed both. This year we are vacationing together but spending most of each day apart. Next year she wants me to visit her extended family. I'm scared.

This is all about me, and no advice to the OP. If I was getting stuck home with the younger kids I would feel no happier than you do. There are things my wife will not do (like roller coasters) I would work some of that into the time wife is gone, and yes, reduce future vacation plans. Most dads don't get enough chances to bond with their kids. Plan it out and make the best of the situation. At the very least make chocolate chip Mancakes for breakfast.
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post #10 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:09 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

She won't understand your position until she faces the same scenario. Don't worry about coming across as pouty, sulking or needy. Do plan a trip for yourself that will keep you away for a good time and make sure it is costly. Leave her to look after the kids.

How can she take a month off of work?

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post #11 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:10 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

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She won't understand your position until she faces the same scenario. Don't worry about coming across as pouty, sulking or needy. Do plan a trip for yourself that will keep you away for a good time and make sure it is costly. Leave her to look after the kids.
Great advice!

Are you going to suggest he give her the silent treatment next?

/sarcasm off
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post #12 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:18 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

If he feels he needs to, just like his wife feels she needs a month long trip to Europe.

That was your third post on this thread and not one bit of advice. Hard to offer advice when you're trying to be a snotty sob, isn't it?
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post #13 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:19 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

Book a one week stay at the Bunny Ranch in Nevada. Take pics and send them to her.
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post #14 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:21 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

Honey, I'm headed for Europe for a month and you're paying for it and keeping the kids.......

Now, stop your whining you selfish, controlling, co-dependent bastard.
I need this time. I'm feeling like these walls are closing in on me!
All the responsibility I have to (you fill in here).


I'm guessing she doesn't work if she has a month off. Oh, she does have 4 weeks off? Then she doesn't have but one week of vacation left to spend with her family?

Just asking, but I feel this is important-- how's your sex life? Do you have to beg for it and get it only when she is in the mood and you've done x,y,z first?

Yeah, I'm thinking this is totally unfair, selfish, she may want go frolic with other men or at least get their attention......

A week? Sure
Two weeks? Maybe

A month on your dime? Priceless.😕
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post #15 of 321 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 06:24 PM
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Re: Vacation Without the Spouse

Maybe you should go on a luxury trip on your own or with a few of your friends also. Enjoy life, relax.

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