Facing fears about raising kids on a sailboat

14 Mar
Kid crew at Admiral Marina

I was not programmed to be different. If anything, my life until we left to go cruising was a careful series of practical steps designed to fulfill the American Dream. Why would we choose such a different life for our growing family?

I know that the way our children spend their days, or the way that they learn, is wildly different from the norm. This is risky, right?

Will our children be socialized? Will they get into college? Will they be able to relate to their peers? WILL THEY HATE US LATER?

I’m honored to have a guest post on KludgyMom, talking straight from the heart and venting a little about the fears I’ve faced to become an unconventional family- click here to read more on Raising Kids Dangerously.

Are you thinking about taking the leap? What do you wonder or worry about? Let me know in the blog comments or on Totem’s Facebook page, and let’s chat.

Fearless readers know that reading this on the Sailfeed website alleviates worries on Totem.

This article was syndicated from S/V Totem - a family sailing the world


  1. Behan - s/v Totem

    * Loreen- you sound like an amazing woman. Those lucky kids!
    * Ann & Doc, thank you! We had a great St Pattys here.
    * Devon- totally understand. It’s all about perspective: I fear mortal peril rushing down a highway in a car!

  2. Devon

    My biggest fear is putting the girls in mortal peril, whether it’s due to pirates or ocean crossings. But, I keep telling myself we face mortal peril each day, and it’s just a matter of adjusting (and smart preparation).

  3. Loreen G

    I’m a grammie who is raising & home schooling my grandkids. Not too many of us out there! I’m always astounded by some of the comments we get in regards to raising children out of the norm. I’m not sure who decided (or when) how children “should” be raised. Even if you go with the mainstream there is no guarantee they are going to turn out how you “expect”. Kids who lead an exciting & full life whether it be traveling around the world or staying in one place, are bound to be creative, motivated, and excited to learn more. As for the worn out “social” question, my grandkids get along wonderfully with all ages, from babies all the way up to the oldest seniors. They are the most social kids I know! You are giving your kids the gift of experiences, joy, and endless learning. Can’t go wrong there!! Happy sailing!

  4. Behan - s/v Totem

    Kirsty- ha! enjoying downtime with their friends…not a mobile device among them.

    Louis- it is hard to imagine, although we find they have no trouble focusing on things they are passionate about- and perhaps more willing to chase those passions. it’ll be interesting to see what paths they choose!

  5. Louis Cohen

    It’s hard to imagine the kids sitting still for 4 years of college after growing up cruising around the world.

    And can you imagine any of the kids settling in to a conventional and routine job, like accounting, or even much engineering work?

    Unless they rebel against their parents by taking office jobs, I suspect that they’ll make their livings doing something they can do remotely (writing or designing or programming) or in cruising ports (fixing boat stuff).

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