Cruising with Teenagers

We are considering starting our cruising lifestyle with a 16 year old female who has 2 years of high school left. Our plan was to retire to a cruising lifestyle after she completed high school and enters college. Due to a possible economic change we may want to start earlier.

Does anyone out there know if you can successfully educate a high schooler during the last 2 years and obtain a high school diploma? If you can, is it very difficult and what about social issues?

Any information would be greatly appreciated for this couple who is anxious to get out there. Thank you for your help. Avarie

Hi Avarie: From our own experience, and that of some of our cruising friends, I think it is safe to say that cruising with teenagers is a lot harder than younger children. This is true from a social standpoint and in terms of schooling. However, this does not mean that it is not practical or overly difficult. It is just a question of weighing the tradeoffs that exist within your own family.

On the education front, there are a number of schools which offer high school training, and a number of home schooling help groups. The Internet is a wonderful resource for this and of course, a great way to stay in touch with the school you are using. Given the resources on the Internet and what you can do with a CD-ROM library, there is no reason why one cannot get a good high school education.

However, this will take a certain amount of discipline from the parents and it helps if the student is a self starter.

The socialization issue is a lot tougher. Leaving friends behind at that age is going to be hard. On the other hand new friends and adventures wait over the horizon. The big question for us would be if we, and our teenagers, could stand each other in such close confines, and how the normal teenage quest for independence would play out on the boat. Good Luck!

Posted by Steve Dashew  (November 30, 1999)

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