When is the “right time” to travel? Parents wonder: do we wait until our child shows interest? Until our child is old enough to appreciate and remember the journey?
Or do we exercise our parental prerogative to make decisions we believe are in the best interest of our children? As one workshop participant put it: “Should we treat it like eating vegetables?”
These are complicated questions. We encourage parents to ask themselves:
- At what age would I like my child to know that the people with whom she shares her heritage are warm, wonderful, genuine people?
- At what age would I like to give my child the experiences and tools she needs to form a healthy identity, integrating the culture she was born into and the culture she lives in?
The answers to these questions will be different for every family and every child. They require significant thought and reflection about the purpose of the journey.
To gain other insight on this complex question, we invite you to read “What Age Is the Right Age?”
Over the years, this has been the #1 question we have been asked, and I often take time to ask families who have made the journey what they think. The answer is the same 99% of the time….most people think the age that THEIR kids traveled was the best age. And curiously, they are ALL right. The ‘right’ time to travel comes from a “heart message” that most families hear clearly after considering the full complexities of the question.