DEAR AMY: My husband and I are in our mid-20s and are very successful professionals. We've enjoyed a happy marriage for the past three years, but we have spent much of that time apart due to my husband's hectic travel with his job. In addition, at just 25, I am burned out with my own career and desperately want to do something different. We have saved a large sum and want to take a year off to travel together and do some volunteering. We would like to spend some uninterrupted time together. We will announce our plans to our families over the holidays and leave for our trip next summer. I know my parents are going to hate this idea, and I'm worried they will cut me out of their lives. My parents believe we should continue with our draining (yet well-paying) jobs and have children soon. I desperately want to live my life to the fullest. I feel that I need a break and some perspective before moving forward with the next chapter of my life. How can I convince my parents to be at peace with our decision?WanderlustDEAR WANDERLUST: Adulthood is awesome. You don't have to worry about making your curfew, you can eat s'mores for dinner, and you don't have to convince your mom and dad that you know what you're doing, unless you're asking them for money, which, of course, you are not.
I think your idea sounds great, although I do wonder about your being so burned out at the ripe old age of 25. However, you don't have to be burned out or fed up to come up with a new plan for the next year or so of your life. All you need is a workable scheme, the funds to pay for it and the enthusiasm and idealism to carry it out.
Enter this conversation realizing that it will be tough for your folks to climb aboard the Awesome Express. You can say to them, "I know you love and care about me, but this feels right. I hope you'll come to respect our choice, even if you don't agree with it."