How do we have Sex on Vacation When Very Aware Teens are Involved?

We tell them we will meet them at the pool in a few minutes and then lock the door.

Ok. Let me be clear. I am no “sex”- pert. I am not sure that my experiences will be helpful (I hope they are). I also wonder if this is a good topic (I think it is). I know my mother-in-law could read this, and so could my mom. I am certain I might embarrass Dave. And my how-babies-were-made words will most definitely mortify the boys. Rest assured for a minute while I tell Kyle and Eli a little story.

Beth and Dave


Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock first brought us Kyle and then brought Eli. Apparently each of you was found amongst the Tribbles. You were so cute and delightful that we decided to raise you as our own. That is my story and I am sticking to it.

Love, Mom

And now that I mentioned the word, I also think I may have freaked you out. And here is how. Just now I introduced the thought, (most likely a traumatic one), that yes, Beth has sex. Never fear. Dave and I just hold hands [wink, wink]. Nevertheless, sex or no sex, strange or appropriate, as a non-fiction writer I always thought I should find a way to appropriately and honestly write mommy and daddy relations. And because I seem to be writing travel these days, and because Dave, the boys and I are on the road so often, I think the topic of sex in tight spaces is an important one. (No. I promise Dave and I are not undercover Cirque Du Soleil performers.) What I am referring to is how Dave and I manage to have mommy and daddy time, especially when we are out of town.

Here is the deal. The behind the scenes world of travel can be dark, exotic, distracting, amazing, tired, out-of-sorts, angry, bitter, and just plain uncomfortable. To get to Costa Rica (where we currently are), for instance, the boys and I took one Red Eye, and Dave took another, through two different hub cities, meeting at the airport in Costa Rica 30 minutes apart. We are sharing a one-room cabin and were up by 7:30 AM the next day (this morning) so Kyle and Eli could milk a cow. I know, weird, but also totally cool.

Eli and Cow

We hiked to the most awesome La Fortuna Waterfall. Then headed to Arenal Volcano National Park, where we saw billions of Leaf Cutter Ants. How cool is that? Very. The clouds cleared long enough for us to see the top of the Volcano, which is something I will never forget. Both boys have homework. We always need to eat. Dave wants to hike to the Rio Celeste tomorrow. And because we are together and have points expiring today, we are booking hotels for later this summer. Dave and the boys are playing Monopoly Deal outside, and I am ready for bed.

When I got married everyone told me not to go to bed angry. I am not angry. I am happy. This has been a good day. No one ever said, “Hey, make sure to have sex every night before you go to bed.” Why? Because that is nuts! Unless, that is, you do. No judgment. Really, high fives to any of you he make sex every night happen. Wow! We are all busy. At home it is much easier to fit in a quickie, or have some really good handholding time while the boys are in school. I love Friday afternoons just for that reason.

Traveling is tricky. Traveling is a time where hands need to stay connected. It is true. When Kyle and Eli were younger we waited to have sex until they were asleep. At the time it seemed difficult. We were worn out and tired. When we worked a little lovemaking in, our travels were always better. Sometimes now I wish for the days when all it took was for our boys to fall asleep. The good part about traveling with others is that other people can distract your sons so you can have sex. For instance, when we traveled with Dave’s mom. It was easy. She had another room, and when Dave and I needed a moment we sent the boys to find her. Thank you for being there, DeAnne.

Now our boys are teenagers. We have talked to them about sex. We know they are at the age when the thought of their parents naked and engaged makes them want to puke. Last night when Dave kissed me in the hot springs, Eli almost threw up. We all laughed and Dave kissed me again. And I say, “let him barf.” Kyle and Eli need to see the connection. After a few seconds of, “ew Mom and Dad, you are gross,” Eli gave us a hug. Yes, he gave us a hug. We were all connecting It is not sex. It is intimacy. The boys need to see that their parents really like each other, and we do. Today was long. Because the boys and I were in Utah and Dave was in San Francisco all week, Dave and I knew it was time to reconnect.

Hot springs at Hotel Silencio del Campo

So tonight when the boys asked if they could get their suits on so we all could go the hot springs, we said, “yes.” Then we urged them to go ahead. “We will meet you there in a few minutes.” We told them. They quickly changed and left the room. Then we locked the door and shut the curtains.