Vacation Hell - what was I thinking!

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-05-2003
Vacation Hell - what was I thinking!
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 12:09am
I don't know why I "volunteer" to go on vacation with an Aspie son and husband. I must have my head examined!

We've been taking this 4 day family vacation at the beach for the past 8 years with friends of ours with kids the same ages as our two boys. We've not had too many problems with my ds 9 year Aspie, until this vacation.

Fatal mistake one - a new hotel. We outgrew the small B & B bedroom and went to a 1 bedroom condo. He flipped out and was out of sorts for the first 2 days, completely out of control, yelling and cussing up a storm. My aspie husband kept saying I don't know what's wrong he's on two meds and he should be fine (where he comes up with this is beyond me), why is he having so many meltdowns. Didn't bother to explain (because he wasn't going to understand) to him that the meds have quelled 80% of the meltdowns, which is good enough for me.

Fatal mistake two - his 5 year old brother was having a great time. My aspie's favorite whipping boy during one of his meltdowns is his brother. The hatred that pours out of his mouth is scary, but when he's done they're buddies. It's really strange.

Fatal mistake three - we went to the beach. The saltwater was "burning" his skin. The sand was stinging his skin. He was miserable and let everyone know it. Last year the sand didn't bother him that much.

Fatal mistake four - his father went on vacation with him. Don't put two Aspies with two different agendas in a small condo and 24/7 contact with each other unless you like a slow painful death.

Now my darling AS husband wants to go to Disney as a family vacation because it's not a family vacation if only 3 out of 4 go. I'm not taking the 9 year old anywhere especially since he had hourly meltdowns and was so miserable in Disney on our January 2002 visit. Mind you the 9 year old is perfectly happy to stay at home with my parents, go to school and be with his dog. The 5 year old is so happy to not have his brother around, is so pleasant,fun, grateful for a new adventure, and easy to be with (compared to my ds). Enough bad stressful vacations!

Thanks for letting me vent! I needed that after 4 days with them.


iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 10:16am

Sounds like you need a vacation to a spa all alone. :-)


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-26-2003
Wed, 08-13-2003 - 9:55am
Hi Leenie,

As another recent survivor of Family Fun Together, I can totally empathize! I believe we brave, intrepid (or is that, "reckless"?) moms will someday be elevated to sainthood.... My ds, 5.5 y.o., PDD-NOS, went to SeaWorld in San Antonio with us last weekend on what may've been the hottest day know you're starting out on the wrong foot when he's already screaming, "STOP LOOKING AT ME!!!!" to people in the line at guest relations. He didn't want to see any of the sea creatures....EXCEPT of course for the penguins, which naturally were what seemed like a day's march across the blazing hot expanses of the SeaWorld complex. He doesn't like heat (sensory modulation issue....has to bathe in tepid water, etc.) and so started doing what appeared to be a St. Vitus' dance on the sidewalk screaming, "it's hot it's hot it's hot!!!" over and over again. We weren't exactly the kind of PR Anheuser-Busch would favor by the end of the ordeal...I mean, visit: two sweating, bedraggled parents towing along two crying children who were sobbing, "I HAAAATE SEAWORLD!! I DON'T EVER WANT TO COME BACK!!!" (okay, at least DH and I were able to laugh about it in the air-conditioned car on the way back!) You're in good company, Leenie, but at least you tried!!!


Avatar for suitemadameblue
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 08-13-2003 - 10:14am
Oh Leenie!!! I can kind of relate.....but in an actually reverse fashion......

the kids just got back from my inlaws (a week in PA, and then another week in Virginia Beach). All work that I had managed has been totally undone - no more manners, no more patience(well, what little Tristan had to begin with), everything pretty much GONE!

Since they got back Sunday night, we have had nothing but fights and grunting and constant questioning (can I go to the playground? can I go to the playground? can I go to the playground?...same question literally every 5mins, and then he will even answer it himself)....all the things that we had worked so hard at over the past few months, totally wiped out in less than 2 weeks!!

I wanted them home so badly, and now, only a few days later, I cannot WAIT until school starts!!!! (my MIL asked if she could have them for an entire month next summer.....not thinking so much!!!!! ROFL)


iVillage Member
Registered: 07-11-2003
Thu, 08-14-2003 - 3:22pm
Vent away, baby!! Go for it. Scream, yell, shout to the heavens, it's all good here. LOL

Hey, I learned a little tip on my recent vaccation about traveling with an Aspie DH and Aspie children.....bring a distraction. Not for the kids, for the DH. LOL. My dad and DH got along really well and they ended up spending most of their time together. My dad had DH go with him when running errands, even small ones, and that really helped to give him a sense of being 'useful' as well as gave him a chance to get away from the kids. It's not as hard to deal with the kids immediate problems when you don't have an adult Aspie informing you constantly of how you should be doing things.

Hmmmm, Disney? After all that? Don't forget the stress ball, chocolate, and Prozac (for when you really need it, lol).

Hugs to you, Honey, and congrats on coming home in one peice! LOL



iVillage Member
Registered: 04-05-2003
Fri, 08-15-2003 - 9:47am
Thanks Candes,

I had a distraction, DH best friend and his family, (a whole other comedy story)and for the most part DH was fine with him and left us alone. It wasn't until we went back to the hotel that the problems started, when it was the two AS alone that started all the problems. When we were killing time shopping on the boardwalk, I found the perfect shirt for DH, but unfortunately they didn't have his size "I'm a ray of f*&%#*? sunshine" (or the other perfect shirt for me was "You are the reason people like me need medication"). Boy that sum up his behavior on all of our vacations. The constant critiquing of everything drives me nuts (good thing I have ADD and tune out after a few seconds - LOL). A few Disney vacations ago (pre-our kids and with friends with their kids) was like traveling with Siskle and Ebert, he would rate every ride. After a while it was "Is it a thumbs up ride or a thumbs down ride". He's since stopped that because our AS never shuts up neither does his brother and DH can't get a word in.

I've decided that the Disney vacation in January is going to be minus one AS - DS. Two on a vacation is one too many. Besides DS is very happy to stay with his dog at my parent's house and go to school. We've left him there before when we took his brother to Montreal in October. Everybody had a great vacation.


PS did you try the new dark chocolate Hershey kisses. They are amazing! Ate a whole bag after a particularly bad day with DS!

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 08-15-2003 - 10:36am
Keep your chin up. I just returned from the first Mostly uneventful vacation I can remember with my "special" family. We are in the teen years now and medicated. Helps that mom is a bit on the AS side too. We are getting the routine down. The best thing I have found is Books on tape for the trip this year Harry Potter 5.
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-11-2003
Sat, 08-16-2003 - 7:09am
ROFL!!! I want those shirts for my DH! He has a small collection of them. He has "Doesn't play well with others", "I'm Autistic. YOU'RE the crazy one!", "Mototcycles? Did someone say motorcycles?"(his obsession), "48, deffinately 48", "Don't look at me! You're still looking!", "Are we there yet? (ad infinitum)", "F%#$ you AND the tree you shoved up your a$#% DID you do that anyway?", "Are you still here?", "Here's a buck, go buy a personallity", "I have a photgraphic memory...problem is, I'm out of film", and "What? Me? Need medication? Only when you're around.". He's got some more, but I can't remember what they say right now...and some I just can't write out here without breaking some serious Terms of Use rules on vulgarity. LOL, even WITH the greeking.

I haven't tried the dark chocolate kisses yet, but I've wanted too. (putting on grocery list now)