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'AITA for calling my husband selfish for not wanting to go on vacation with us?' UPDATED 2X

'AITA for calling my husband selfish for not wanting to go on vacation with us?' UPDATED 2X

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"AITA for calling my husband selfish for not wanting to go on vacation with us?"

Background:

I (37F) and husband (37M) have been married for 10 years and have 3 children. Every summer, my family takes a vacation to the beach.

I'm not a huge beach fan, but our kids LOVE it, plus my mom pays for me and my siblings and our families, so it's almost a free trip (excluding travel there, which usually isn't a huge cost). Some years only some of my family makes it, but a few years ago my entire family (50+ people) went as a last trip with my grandma. Husband HATES the beach, but reluctantly went with us.

His behavior was HORRENDOUS. He wouldn't leave the condo, bailed on previously booked activities that made the cost go up for others, and didn't help AT ALL with our kids. It was basically like he wasn't there, and when he was, he was complaining the whole time. I was so embarrassed. My whole family gave me the pitying stares and tried to help me as best they could, but it was just a miserable time.

Our daughters begged him to play on the beach with them and he just wouldn't engage at all. Since then, he hasn't accompanied us back. In fact, he will only go on vacations with us if it is a place of his choosing. Which is usually hiking. Don't get me wrong, I like to hike, but I'd also like to do other things. And so would the kids. Now on to the part where I called him selfish.

We are now planning our trip for this summer to the beach, and once again, he says he will not go. The kids are devastated again, because they want him to go so they can swim together and build sandcastles together. He says he just hates the beach and there's no changing his mind.

I got frustrated and called him selfish because he never wants to do anything that the kids enjoy. He said I was being a jerk and there's nothing I can do that will make him like the beach. I told him it's not about liking the beach, it's about spending time with his family. He says we could skip it and go hiking instead if we want to spend time together. So I said we won't be going on anymore of his vacations.

Now I feel guilty, since that was the one thing he would do with us. AITA?

Redditors had OP's back, all the way.

its_batgirl wrote:

NTA. Is he 5? The point of the trip is to make memories and its going to happen whether he likes it or not. Unfortunately for him, he is nailing in the memory for his kids as they grow up that he does not value them and actually doesn't really consider family time important if it doesn't involve something he directly chose.

Kids will remember who was there and built those memories. I agree he's being selfish but I'd also take on a whiney child. I also don't enjoy the beach, but my family also has a similar trip and I just man the items while everyone swims. He has to find the joy in it - one being that his family is there and that should matter.

NoButWhat wrote:

NTA. My mother doesn’t ride roller coasters. She gets motion sickness even from driving down a hill too fast, never mind coasters. But my brother and I loved them. Most summers we would go to a theme park on our family vacation. My dad would take us on the rides and my mom would sit and people watch or bring a book. When I was a teenager, I would ask, isn’t this boring for you?

Wouldn’t you rather be doing something you enjoy? But she would say something along the lines of, summer vacations are for making fun memories for my kids, not for me to do only what I want to do. My mom is older and from a different school of thought that expected a full sacrifice of selfhood from parents, so I’m not necessarily saying that this is the model everyone should be following.

What I am saying is that it’s extremely immature and obnoxious for your husband to behave the way he has on the previous trips and refuse to go on any others, even when his kids are craving his attention and involvement. Parenting is sacrifice, and one of those sacrifices is that family vacations aren’t just about you anymore.

I have wonderful memories with my mom from our vacations and I remember almost nothing about riding the actual rides. The love I felt from my parents is what always rose to the top.

CellistFantastic wrote:

NTA and that is wild that anyone is taking his side. It’s the BEACH not the gulag. Part of being a parent is doing things that aren’t your first choice because seeing your child’s happiness makes you happy. I didn’t want to see the new Halloween movies in the theatre, but my teenage son sure did; so I took him. Because I love him and love doing what he enjoys.

DELILAHBELLE2605 wrote:

Is this really about the beach? Because I gotta be honest…the thought of vacationing with a ton of people with “planned activities” etc makes me want to stab my eyes out with a fork. Go on the trip without him and do something you can all be excited about as a nuclear family.

And maybe once every third year or something he can put on his big boy pants and join you guys and not be an ass about it. ESH a little.

After receiving a lot of responses, OP jumped on with a few updates:

EDIT: I'm not going to deny my kids the yearly beach vacation. They look forward to it all year long. But they are quite literally the only ones there without their dad present, and they've noticed.

EDIT 2: My whole extended family does not go every year. We don't spend the entire time together. There is plenty of downtime and time to be alone. I have suggested new places before and been vetoed. His family has also wanted to do a beach trip (they love the beach) but he refuses. Also, he has no trauma. He just hates the heat and sand and says it's boring.

Hopefully, OP and her husband are able to figure something out, but it sounds like he'd have to act like an actual adult for that to happen.

Sources: Reddit
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