Feel Guilty Leaving Your Kids? Maybe, Maybe Not

Written on January 15, 2014 at 10:07 am , by

Monday afternoon, in a wild swirl of hugs and kisses, I said goodbye to my kids for six days and nights to go on assignment in Chicago. I have to say, the emotions associated with work trips never fail to blindside me. On the one hand, frankly, it’s awesome to have a break from the day-to-day. Mine is a two-full-time-working-parents household, with a 9-year-old and a 6-year-old. My husband and I are both Scout troop leaders. The kids take gymnastics classes. If it’s not one thing going wrong in terms of maintaining our ’50s-era house, it’s another. Add in a nightly homework load that I personally find ridiculous, and most nights by 9:30 I’m wiped. Done. Finished.

So, comparatively speaking, a work trip should be a welcome break. Even something to look forward to. But somehow it never seems to play out that way for me. I can’t wait to get away. And then I feel guilty for feeling that way.

I think part of the issue may be that my trips are rare, maybe once or twice a year. Perhaps if I left a little more often we’d all get better accustomed to it. When my son’s eyes fill with tears, I get a lump in my throat I can’t swallow. I remind him that as an owner of an iPhone (his begged-for and gleefully received Christmas gift) he can text me as often as he wants, and we’ll catch up on FaceTime in the evenings. He’s still bummed and, therefore, so am I.

Do you take trips without your kids? If so, do you feel guilty? If not, for whatever reason, do you wish you could? Tell me in the comments.

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One Response to “Feel Guilty Leaving Your Kids? Maybe, Maybe Not”

  1. My daughter just turned 4 in December. My husband has been away many times from our daughter for trips. Personal and church related trips. I can’t say the same for me.

    As I said she is now 4 years old but Mommy has not been away more than just during the day and 2 evening outings with my husband for concerts but only gone for a couple of hours. I have not been away from my daughter over night yet.

    I haven’t done trips away is because we just have my husband and I. We don’t have family locally that can take her for the night and don’t have any friends I think I could leave her without going out of my mind.

    I have many friends that tell me I’m nuts for this but I just don’t have a reason to be away from my daughter over night. We take her on vacation with us even when we go out of town for the weekend. I plan on eventually working on nights away from one another. We will probably start with just a night here and there, maybe have her go to a friends house for a sleep over when she starts kindergarten in the fall. After that then we can work on longer trips.