Saturday, July 20, 2013

On Boating with a Baby and Being Irresponsible Parents

Our miserable, tethered child.  Such a sad thing to see.
The other morning, I was greeted to this email in my inbox:
I wish you safe travel!  However, I hope you will consider that your influence may embolden less able sailors to embark on a like journey -- unequipped and naive to the risks.  I recently read, and firmly believe, that house boating on the high seas is a risk for toddlers and children under eight.  It saddens me to see a toddler tied up in a harness instead of having the freedom to run and play.  You think they will have fond memories but, in fact, the memories and rewards will be for the parents alone.  It may be a bit selfish to seek this kind of adventure as young parents.  You have many supporters but you most likely will never hear from voices of reason who strongly disagree.  I hope you will be responsible and tell the world of the negative aspects of your voyage instead of painting a picture that is both unrealistic and dangerous.  Do you really want to encourage young parents to abandon their home, take a few sailing lessons, purchase a houseboat, and take a baby and a toddler on THEIR adventure?  Please add a caveat to your blog!
While my first reaction was to open up and lash out with lots of exclamation points , I then re-read - took a deep breath - and laughed, actually chuckled out loud,  at this confused woman who clearly has not the slightest clue how we live our life and raise our baby.  I did write her back and while I didn't use any curse words, I don't think she'll be writing us anymore.  Anyone who has met me in person will say I am very nice, but those who know me really well know that I am nobody's fool and once you cross sweetness turns sour.

We get a lot of emails these days.  I'd say 90% are positive, 8% are spam offers and sponsorship requests and the remaining 2% are from Judgey McJudgerton's like Mrs. B above.  I know a lot of you believe that I should just ignore folks like these and usually I do, but I feel that this woman makes a few points that really need to be addressed, lest there be more folks like her out there in cyberspace ready to email us ridiculousness like this.

So with no further ado:

  • On "house boating":  The terminology here really bugged me.  We live on a blue-water sailboat.  It is not a houseboat.  A houseboat is a floating trailer home, a pimped out pontoon boat,  and has no business being on the open ocean.  Our boat was built to do what we are doing with it.  What we are doing is cruising on a sailboat.  It's much safer and the glaring difference between the two is worth noting.  Call me a stickler for lexicon, but come on - we are NOT house boating. (Interestingly enough I would be curious to know this "article" she references, but of course she did not include it in her email.  For future judgers: cite your sources!)
  • On our child being "tied up in a harness":  We live on a boat that is surrounded by the OCEAN so keeping our poor, suffering child clipped into the cockpit is a necessity.  But you want to know something?  She is "tethered" for about 3% of her waking life.  And you know what else?  She has zero problem with it.  I am willing to bet a left lung that our child gets significantly more time "running free" than most land-lubber babies.   She spends almost ALL of her time outside, in nature; swimming in the ocean, collecting shells on the beach, playing outside with other boater children.  There is incredible research that proves being in nature is good for brain development, happiness and health - and Isla is out there, running (tether) free for hours and hours almost every single day.  Furthermore, unlike most children her age she yet to watch any T.V.  Do you know how many hours most kids in the USA watch television?  It's insane.  Even the T.V people say it's bad for kids.  And, in our opinion, time spent in front of the 'boob tube' is WAY more dangerous and detrimental to a baby's development than a few hours spent in a safety harness.  Furthermore, aren't landlubber peers "strapped" to seats in cars for safety?  I fail to see the difference here...
  • On her "memories":  This is one of my favorites and I always love when people use the argument "well, she's not going to remember any of this, so why do it?"  If this (ridiculous) logic were true - then why don't all of us parents get together, stick our infants in front of televisions all day long and enjoy the silence for the first couple of years?  Why do we expend so much energy on them, loving them, reading to them, cuddling them, taking them on walks...etc and - in general - spending so much of our precious time on them - time that could be spent on Facebook or watching Lost reruns - if they won't remember it?  Why?  Because these are the most formative years of their lives and whatever we expose them to now will effect them forever, that's why.  Isla might not "remember" the fact that she first learned to walk in the Bahamas or now says "Or awa" to say "goodbye" because at the moment she plays only with French-speaking kids who say "Au revoir", but you know what - it's doing something and all this exposure to new people, places and nature is shaping her brain, her world view and her personality.  She might not have "memories", but these things will be etched forever in her character.
  • On our "selfishness":  This seems to be a theme amongst the judgies out there.  We're selfish.  Well, let's see:  Isla is being raised by both of her parents, she is loved, adored, and not a single one of her needs goes un-met.  She has never spent more than 24 hours away from us and, gets a tremendous amount of love from us and pretty much makes new friends everywhere she goes.  She is exposed to new faces, places, languages and cultures daily - but all the while she comes back to her familiar home (a sailboat) and her trusted mommy and daddy.  She is incredibly secure, insanely happy, and very, very smart for her age.  I could go on and on and on, but suffice it to say:  we're not just doing this for us.  We're doing it for her as well.  She's not just along for the ride, she's a big part of why we're on this ride.
  • On the "dangerousness" of sailing with a baby:  Okay.  You win.  Sailing with a baby is dangerous.  But so is sending your child to school, letting them sleep at a friend's house, going to daycare, leaving them with a babysitter, driving in a car with you, going to the grocery store, crossing the street, going to the park, eating grapes whole, going up and down stairs, climbing trees, running on the sidewalk, talking to strangers, playing in your backyard, juggling knives and - in general - living.  LIVING is dangerous, people.  Do NOT leave your homes.  You have been warned.
  • On our "emboldening others":  I would never suggest that anyone with a toddler go out, buy a boat and do what we are doing.  But I wouldn't necessarily dissuade them either.  I think the USA has sort of gone into a default mode where we believe that we should be completely taken care of and we don't need to take any responsibility for our decisions, because someone else makes them.  Why is it my responsibility to tell people if they should or should not do whatever it is they want to do?  If they read this blog, feel inspired and make the choice to live like we do then it is THEIR choice.  If it turns out to be a grave mistake because they didn't do THEIR homework, how is this my fault?  We have a lot of experience, did a ton of research and made some very conscious choices before we embarked on this lifestyle.  I am pretty open about the fact that cruising is NOT for everyone and it is NOT easy.  But to put a litigious caveat on my blog to tell people with babies that "this might be dangerous for you and your child"...?  That is ridiculous.  If you can't figure that out for yourself, have bigger problems.  Anyway, we already have a disclaimer on our site and one is enough for me.
Okay (wiping hands together with a big, toothy grin).  I think that about covers it.  I wanted to get a few of those things off my chest and I feel better now that I have cleared the air for any future emails that may come our way.  I understand that some people might not agree with our choices and may be ignorant to our lifestyle, and that's okay.  That's normal - there are plenty of parents I have seen (mostly at carnivals) that I don't understand or agree with but you don't see me grabbing the popsicle out of their six month old's mouth.  To each his own, that's what I say.  This diversity is what makes the world go 'round and keeps things interesting.   But the second you attack my parenting and start flinging ridiculous judgements my way, well, I'm gonna fling right back.  

Look, I am not saying that raising a baby on a boat is superior to raising a baby on land, and I am certainly not saying that it doesn't come without it's own unique set of challenges.  But this works for us and, so far, we're more than thrilled with the results.  No matter where you raise you child, be it at sea, on land or in a tree house - there will be positives and negatives, ups and downs, advantages and disadvantages.  There is no "perfect" scenario or method and every child/parent combo is unique.  What I can say with absolute certainty is this: our child is incredibly happy, insanely loved, and is blessed with a tremendous amount of our time.  And - last I checked - those are the most important things we can give our kids.

So there you have it.  If you meet Jimmy Buffett you might end up in a song, and if you piss me off, you might end up in a blog post.  You have been warned.


Mitzie said...

I have been reading your blog for close to six months and have never commented, but I feel compelled to now. You and your husband are AWESOME parents! And myself, having both a 17 and 23 year old son, can honestly say, if I would have thought of it sooner, I would have been thrilled and blessed to do it exactly the way you are doing it. Just the amount of quality time you are able to spend with Isla, probably almost entirely due to your lifestyle choice,is worth its weight in gold.

There are too many people in this world who think if things are not done exactly the way they would do them then it is not the right way. I agree with you wholeheartedly that the different way we all choose to do things is what makes the world a more interesting place.

So again, GOOD JOB, and on a side note, your are a wonderfully gifted writer! I love reading your stories, especially because they are so well written and very entertaining.

Keep Reaching said...

Right on !

Illegitimi non carborundum.

Anonymous said...

I'd only add that some people are completely self-absorbed and self-righteous. I fear for the future, and it's not because of the way you're raising your child. But, it's because whoever wrote you probably has a child of their own and is raising it in a manner that she she alluded to in her email.

Since you didn't want to cuss her out in your response, give me her email address, and I'll do it for you!!

The never of some people.

Green said...

Our oldest girl has lived aboard for the last five out of 8 years, and our youngest for all three. They are happy, self reliant, active and interested children. I grew up the same way, and if I'm not exactly a "normal" 9-5 suburban guy doing my time every day in the Beamer and the office (I sail for a living), I'd like to think that I have skills that apply to real life and a character shaped from early experiences aboard. This post was well written and touches so many of the important points for those of us that choose to live and cruise aboard our BLUE WATER SAILBOATs with our kids. Live and let live.

Heather Cramond said...


I agree with your statement-- should you not do things that you're completely capable of doing because an untrained person might attempt it? Absolutely not. Perhaps as someone born in the 70s I have a less fearful mentality of what kids can handle. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going off to the woods where murders are.

Great blog!

Anonymous said...

B -
You forgot something in the section about 'tethering.' Isla is learning, in a natural way, that intelligent people take safety precautions when adventuring - like wearing a life vest when white water rafting or a helmet when biking. She already 'gets it.'

Also - just a side note - it has not gone unnoticed that you've kicked up your cooking skills (grilled fish and sauteed spinach!!!) I knew you would ;-)

Jenny A

joe c said...

You go girl! You and Scott are leaps and bounds ahead of most parents.

Mark Watland said...

At my ripe old age, I can only thank my parents for the experiences that they gave me on the water as a very young kid. They provided memories that will be special to me for as long as I live. I followed 16 year old Jessica Watson’s solo, non-stop sail around the world daily and I read many of the negative comments criticizing her parents for being irresponsible. But I say that they should have been named “Parents of the Year” for allowing Jessica to live her dreams in the safest way possible. As I heard her mother say, it’s much more dangerous for a teenager to be on the roads in a car. Jessica has said often that it’s only people who didn’t understand the preparation that went into her project and how much experience she had who were critical of her and her parents. But Jessica and her family had nothing but support from those who took the time to find out more about it. So I think it’s only people who don’t have an understanding of the amazing experiences and great memories that you’re providing Isla in a very safe manner who might be critical of you. But you have my vote for “Parents of the Year.”

Anonymous said...

I have to admit I am very judgemental about people who send their kids to daycare. My friend thinks both parents need to work full time to afford a 2nd car to drive the kids around and a bigger house so the kids can have a bigger yard. The kids are 2 and 5. At that age what they need is you. The new car and bigger house are about the parents not the kids but most people just don't get it. I think the choices/ priorities you guys are making are the right ones.

Robert Salnick said...

I'm sure Mes B also rails against people who are judgmental.
Sadly, people like this are allowed to vote

Tillerman said...

Well said. Why can't these people mind their own business? Anyone who follows your blog can surely see that you are doing a superb job as parents to Isla.

"If you piss me off, you might end up in a blog post. You have been warned." I love that! Considering adding it as a slogan on me blog.

Corri said...

The part about the poor baby being tethered cracked me up. The average American landlubber baby spends the average day jumping from being buckled in a high chair, to buckled in a stroller, to buckled in a car seat.

I will never understand why we don't just leave other parents to raise their kids as they see fit. There is not just one correct way to raise children.

Betsy James said...

The whole email in its entirety drips with arrogance and ignorance but the part that got me was;

Do you really want to encourage young parents to abandon their home, take a few sailing lessons, purchase a houseboat, and take a baby and a toddler on THEIR adventure?

I haven't been reading the blog that long but even I have figured out that you both have a pretty vast pool of experience sailing. So to say your blog encourages people to take a couple of sail classes and push off is absurd. If anything your blog illustrates that knowledge, experience, preparation and teamwork are critical to a sailing lifestyle. Never once do I remember reading "We decided to do this crossing with our heads firmly planted up our asses and everything went perfectly!"

Some people are asses.

Dan N Jaye said...

Sad. So, you should limit yourself to the smallest life possible, because not everyone can do what you do? There are people on this planet in wheelchairs ... so you should never teach your child to run. There are blind people ... so you should close your eyes too. And there are silly, fearful people, so ... you should do ... what?

Anonymous said...

Well...she's right about one thing: It would be wrong of you to you encourage people to take sailing lessons if they're going houseboating.

Anonymous said...

We get the exact same thing from people about our decision to home school. I used to explain, but after almost 8 years of it, I just tell them that it's the best decision for our family, we love it, and have a great day :) I will never understand why people think they have a right to comment on other peoples decisions regarding raising their children. It seems like a lot of people are much too wrapped up in their own superiority & seem to think their opinions matter. Love your blog :)
~Lori (I am posting under anon because I can't get my Google addy to work)

Arizona_Bob said...

Get 'em Brittany!

Some don't get to live the dream...and some of THEM are just sour grapes.

"Opinions" - well, ya know about everyone having them...

You guys are doing a GREAT job, and I very much wish I'd been able to raise MY three that way.

Anonymous said...

For transparency, could we include all email responses in full text when we include initial emails in full text?

Anonymous said...

Hi im Phil the proud owner of the first Rasmus 35 ever built i am 36 an in good time will sail her around the world.
My father bill was a New Zealand champion sailor and boat builder. the fondest memories i have from as far back as i can remember are floating on his chest in the middle of the ocean.. I would give anything to hear, touch, feel, smell that memory agin.. you get my drift.
I recently read an article in NZ yachting mag about female singer/ song writer Jamie McDell With two NZ hit singles to her credit and an incredibly balanced out look on life she too was a cruisers Daughter!
Yes there is danger where you let it ..
But i do not believe for a second you and Scotts lifestyle choice is a selfish one but the greatest gift you could give your daughter.

Ignorance angers me Grrr!!

Anonymous said...

This one made me stop being a "lurker". If all parents were as conscientious as you two the world would be a far better place. You have given Isla so many wonderful gifts - the best being your obvious love and attention. I enjoy following your adventures as a former sail boater who was never as brave as you!

Anonymous said...

you go Girl!!!
you couldn't have stated that any better.
you guys are doing a wonderful job

heather k said...

hahaha! I don't know you, so I've never heard your voice, but I could practically "hear" you rattling this off in one long breath. You're right on the money. Glad you have a blog post to just copy and past the link to send to future nay-sayers so you dont have to spend any more time or energy on people like this. Loved your last paragraph. Made me laugh!!

All the best! Keep living!

Brett A. said...

I met Isla and she was one happy kid! Spend any time with Brittany and Scott (I know I am preaching to the choir here) and you can see they are loving, conscientious parents. You guys are giving Isla a gift I wish I had known to give my kids when they were young. Isla will grow up to be confident and independent and someone who does not follow the herd.

As for the "selfish" thing....being accused of that never ends. People will always accuse others of being selfish when they don't do what society deems they should do. My kids are 18 and 22 now and I have been told I am selfish for wanting to leave now and go cruise. With that logic I guess we should all just stay at home and live our lives for everybody else so that we are not selfish!

Unknown said...

Mrs. B sails the burbs in a minivan for adventure and has likely never ventured beyond Disney World with her kids. The life experiences Isla has already had dwarf this sad, self-righteous woman's, not to mention those of her poor kids.

Anonymous said...

Ok, usually I just read the blog, but this time I'm inclined to comment...

It strikes me that Judgey McJudgerton, as you named her, is a closed-minded idiot!

Oops, did I say that out loud?

I've seen the photos you've posted of your little rugrat, and she always looks just as happy as can be! Cute as a button, too! As far as being tethered, you obviously know that kids need and crave boundaries. The tether allows her some freedom of movement while keeping her safe. I used a similar tether on my kids, letting them walk around when we were in crowded places. Didn't seem to harm them at all!

Your point-by-point response is spot on! Especially the "memories" one; kids are very open to what ever we teach them at that age, and TV ain't the way to go!

Judgey McJudgerton seems to be the kind of sheltered person who will be old, living alone with 58 cats, perfectly safe in her home which she never leaves!

Silly closed-minded people! Enjoy your travels! As someone who enjoyed a not-so-traditional upbringing, moving frequently all around the world as a kid, I can say that in later life I appreciate the experiences I had, and have much broader horizons than some.

Now, stop giving your child such a great real world education! How is she supposed to learn helpless government dependency if you keep teaching her stuff?????


Cheers to y'all!

Unknown said...

Well done Brittany.
Everyone has an opinion but it is only yours that counts.
All of the so called boat children that we have met are so well balanced, polite and a joy to be around.
Stay safe from the crew on Annecam.
Cam "H"

horizonstar said...

Do you really want to insure that your child grows up to be a member of the consumerist sheeple?

Just raise them in surburban USA, buy them all the toys in China, and let them grow up with their peer group as the defining reference in their lives.

happylyns said...

Well said!

When people don't understand something they attack it because it scares them, if the stupid woman had taken the time to explore sailing, she wouldn't be making those sorts of comments. I'm determined that if/when we have kids we introduce them to sailing as soon as possible, I wish my childhood had been like Isla's. I have very few memories with my parents as a child because they were constantly working.

Tomorrow any parent could be driving their car full of children and be hit by a drunk driver. You can't bubble wrap kids, you can only try to give them the best experiences in life!

DM said...

It does make me wonder how she came across your blog in the first place and why she would continue to read if she so strongly disagrees with your lifestyle. I also posted pics of my 15 month old harnessed to the wheel of our sailboat and got nothing but comments on how cute and lucky she is. Thankfully!

Anonymous said...

I would not worry about such comments. We, as humans can't miss something we are not aware of.

Living on a boat is/will be the "norm" for your child.

Much more important, even if we can't remember it as a child are the moments our parents spend with us. Happy, playful or teaching moments may not be remembered but are important to our growth.

So if Mom and Dad and Baby are happy together, it matters not at all if it is a 40 foot sailboat or a 900 sq. foot apartment or a mansion.

Have a great time. Your child is learning just be seeing all that you do.

Unknown said...

"Even the T.V people say it's bad for kids."

- sources please

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with the author of the letter. You have no business raising children in an open environment where they can learn and explore nature with such freedom. Children need television to teach them not parents. How dare you raise your own child. If you have any brains in that blond head of yours fly back now let the social system raise and brainwash them so you can have time to acquire massive debt and become enslaved to the system. Think about their education and teen age years, you are depriving them of experimenting with drinking and drugs and driving under the influence, teen pregnancy, and violent video games, shame on you!
PS :)

Unknown said...

Holli on Shiloh posted this last year, and I think it's appropriate to share here, as it touches on some of the same issues; children raised on boats. I loved what she observed & wrote. A year later, I still think about her post, and wonder about the question she asked; how will the kids raised on boats differ in the world, compared to their landlubber counter-parts?

chris bee said...

What ist this? Four Kids up on a boat.

Unknown said...

Wow! this kind of talk get my blood boiling, People like her is what is wrong with our schools today! Everyone deserves a participation ribbon, no one is allowed to think for themselves unless a book and a stack of statistics enforces her decision. If I decide to buy a "houseboat" and sail to the North Pole its my decision but I made it and will take the responsibility for it.

You keep doing what you are doing, Isla will be the most well rounded child ever and will be thanking you for the adventures most only dream of. And if you sink tomorrow you are still better than those who never took any chances!


Courtney said...

"I think the USA has sort of gone into a default mode where we believe that we should be completely taken care of and we don't need to take any responsibility for our decisions, because someone else makes them."

This. So sadly true. Where has personal responsibility gone? It's wonderful Isla has a mother and a father and isn't shipped off to daycare or nannied. Already she's luckier than many kids.

Keep it fun and cool, Brit!

Marlin said...

With this statement, it was obvious she is clueless on the subject:
I recently read, and firmly believe, that house boating on the high seas is a risk for toddlers and children under eight

One look at your daughters smile and you can see the truth.

Alison said...

I agree with another reader who mentions this boils their blood. I've been following you both for a little over a year, and I'm very impressed with your ability to raise a child while continuing your journey. As a sailor myself, I do understand the outside concern, but who's to judge? This is YOUR life, not Mrs. B's.

Bob said...

I don't want to wade through the comments, so I'll just say AWESOME.
Oh and, when I read the "dangerous" part, I thought about the story of a daycare (don't remember where it was) where two of the kids were poisoned! So sending your kid to daycare is dangerous too now? Eek!

Anonymous said...

Imagine if you were juggling knives while on a houseboat, untethered. I think I saw a show about that once.

Anonymous said...

Those of us who have sailed across oceans, through both calms and storms, know that you are doing just fine. Keep up the great work so we have something to enjoy until we get back out there. is tethering a baby any different from strapping a baby into a car seat? Does anyone complain about car seat usage?

Lauren said...

I know that you didn't owe that crazy judgmental B a response, but I think your response was AWESOME.

Just had to chime in on this one. :)

Anonymous said...

The daycare where the two kids were poisoned (and thankfully survived) was in good ol' safe Toronto.

Statistically I'm willing to bet your chance of injury or death is far higher driving on the highway than sailing the high seas.

Bill le Skeep said...

Your sensitivity reveals your care and compassion for taking all reasonable care of your kids aboard. Kudos to you both. I think the way you all have your little one harnessed aboard is certainly a great training photo for how to do things right! Keep up the incredibly fantastic site which is certainly the leading site on the net.

Linda said...

Well said, Brit! You speak your truth very well. Keep it up! Your honesty about "our" lives as cruisers is refreshing. Namaste

Sara said...

Clearly she has no idea what she is talking about. I'm so glad you didn't let it get you down. The life you are giving your daughter is such an amazing gift and will shape her forevermore. I cruised {from ages 11-13} with my younger brother {age 4 when we left} and my parents... sailing a similar route that you are on. I can sincerely say it has been the most monumental part of my life. I am now in my mid-thirties with four young children and a firefighter husband. I'm working on him to live a similar dream! I'm so glad to have found your blog this morning through the Women who Sail FB page! Praying for safe voyages ahead for you and your family!!

Anonymous said...

My Bride and I have not kids and don't have any intentions to have any. However, we have two nephews and a niece all under 4 years old. We have them out to the boat often and are god parents for them. We have always said that if something happened and we had custody we would do exactly what you are doing.

Keep the "haters" at bay and just keep being you.

Fair winds,


db said...

You know what's best for you and your child. Good for you for living your dream and creating a happy and loving environment for your family. Best wishes!!

meme from 5kidsandaboat said...

The naysayers are just jealous of
your lifestyle. They are afraid to try anything out of the box, and therefore must judge you as a way to quill their feeling of leading a boring life, believe me they would rather be sailing to, deep down in their hearts.

GBMike said...

Wonderful reply for all people that judge.
My husband and I ventured out on a power boat to travel the Americas. We were told by so many you cannot do that in yours type of boat. We proved them all wrong. As it turned out it was the best 3 years we had and unfortunately he had a heart attack and died while we were cruising.
To this day I would tell all to get out there and do your thing do not let those that judge stop you from having your dreams. There is nothing more rewarding than living life not watching it go by because someone thinks your way of living is wrong.

Anonymous said...

:), verry nice that you answered on that!

we are just about to go on our sun magic 44, with our 21 month old son. i left my boat at prickly bay for the season, so see you there from 10 november.


Felicia said...

I was so happy to read this. You are sassy and I LOVE it! My husband and I are taking a year off starting in May and leaving from Muskegon MI through the St. Lawrence across the Atlantic, to the Med and then back across to the Carribean and then back up the East coast of the US. We are planning on starting our family after this trip and I am thinking more and more about living the cruising life. I am so happy I found your site and am one of those inspired people. Thank you SO much for this response. We have been receiving a lot of negative feedback from our family who believe it will be too dangerous...this has given me some much needed ammo! What a beautiful site you have!

Anonymous said...

Well said. I would love to do what you are doing. I grew up on a boat during the summers and want the same for my little boy. If only I won the lottery! I have family friends that did a similar thing you are doing. They traveled the world back in the 80s. I can tell you that as adults they are fully functional and actually way more open minded then people I know who grew up on the land. I was so envious of them and their huge sailboat traveling around the world. They had school on the boat and the world around them. I commend you on your adventure. Enjoy!

Unknown said...

I agree 100% with everything except this: "I know a lot of you believe that I should just ignore folks like these and usually I do".

We're all responsible for ourselves, but we're also responsible for the culture we live in. It's important to fight sometimes, to fight ignorance, prejudice, hatred, etc. Upholding the moral fibre is everyone's responsibility. Thank you for doing your part :)


Anonymous said...

I hate it that the ignoranuses are everywhere. And they vote and attempt to make us dependent on the "nanny state."
Keep doing what you're doing!
Although I have not been a liveaboard with my kids, they have spent vacations and weekends aboard. All 3 were aboard before they were 4 months old. One at 6 weeks. My family knew us well enough when we were expecting our first child that several of the baby gifts were sailing related - including an infant sized life jacket. Our kids learned early on that tethers and PFDs were as essential on the water as carseats and bicycle helmets on land.
You're doing it right.

Anonymous said...

I was on a boat for the first time at 9 months. My parents were sailing coastal waters but even still, if I'd gotten sick (or if they'd gotten sick for that matter!) rescuers would've had to have been called. I think there's a huge information/cultural gap between sailors and non-sailors. And maybe a bit of envy at play? I really feel for the Rebel Heart family. And how judge-y is our culture - not every child needs to be raised in a big suburban house within 5 miles of a major hospital.

Anonymous said...

Live on living the way you are. Many people do not have the opportunity to do as such. Being out on the open seas, breathing fresh air, spending quality family time, creating unbelievable memories, making new friends, seeing all the beautiful beaches, learning new languages. I'd say that beats the hell out of the normal everyday hum drum living. I smiled the whole time watching your video in awe. Your children are going to grow up with the best memories and you know what, I believe they are going to be the best down to earth, loving and honest children that will put spoiled kids to shame!! Happy Sailing!!

Kyr said...

I came across your blog because I'm looking into learning to sail and have a three month old.
I'm researching it because I know it could potentially be dangerous and difficult... if I didn't know that I wouldn't be researching... so I don't need a disclaimer.

My husband and I love kayaking but now with a baby, and planning to have another in a couple of years, we want to figure out how to stay on the water.

We've been told by several (more than several) people all the things we wouldn't be able to do once we had a baby... yes, it takes more time and consideration and effort but continuing to live life is better for us and our baby! She's heading to her 10th state this weekend at 3.5 months old and she loves to travel (as long as she's not strapped into a car seat for long).

It's a fear of the unknown that keeps people from adventuring.
As for selfishness? My baby also has all her needs met and is really happy (she only cries at about 8pm when she's tired for a minute or two before feeding and falling asleep wherever we are at... no sound machine or black out shades needed because we've never had them).

Happy sailing!

Unknown said...
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Anonymous said...

I found your blog and I want to say THANK YOU!!!!!!!!! My husband and I are raising our sweet daughter on a boat and sometimes I get discouraged because we are out of the norm!!! Thank you so much for being so open with your lifestyle!! I really needed this boost of confidence!!!

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