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9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

Raleigh, North...
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9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

I'll be in NYC later this month with my kids (ages 9 and 11). I have booked 9/11 Memorial tickets but am now rethinking whether we should go. While I'm sure it would be very moving for me, I think the kids may be a little young to grasp the significance of the memorial. We only have 2 1/2 short days in NYC so this may be better saved for a future trip when they are older and can understand better what happened (since the older one was only 6 months when it happened and the younger one not even born). From what I've read the security just getting is isn't a cake walk either. If we did go, I'm sure the kids would be well behaved and understand it is a somber site and not a 'tourist attraction' though.

So I'm just wondering if anyone has taken their tween aged kids there and if the would recommend it?

Thanks

new york city
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1. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

it really depends on your kids--- At that age they should be old enough to "grasp" the significance of it all--- Unless they have been under a rock all these years--- they are not babies after all are they ? I find sometimes today's parents have no clue as to what their own kids know or do when they are not looking

Boston
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2. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

At nine and eleven both your children should be able to understand what its about, Im sure you can explain without going into detail, the security getting in is not really all that bad, just takes an additional 10min or so.

Sydney
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3. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

I took my 2 kids to St Paul's Chapel instead. They were 10 & 7 at the time (2010). That place pretty much says it all really.

Raleigh, North...
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4. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

Thanks DiceMan, yes I can definitely explain and they have seen the footage and know what happened that day. If you thnk the lines won't be bad, that is good to heard. I've read the last several months worth of TA reviews and some make the security sound like a nightmare worse than any airport screening I've ever been to. There are also reviews that talk of very long lines. So that worries me. My tickets are for 6:30 PM on a Saturday night, so maybe the crowds won't be so bad then.

I'm in no way trying to say the memorial isn't 'important' enough to go to, but with only 2 1/2 days I'm just wondering if it would be better left for another trip.

Bilmin09, I appreciate your taking the time to respond. But no, my children are not babies and I'm not sure what you were implying about my parenting style. However, we have lived outside of the US for the last 7 years so even though we don't live under a rock, they probably haven't been exposed to as much 9/11 history as other children their age. As for 'grasping' what I mean is that they don't have the memories of when it happened, only what they've heard since. So will the memorial help them relate to the events, or will it be hard for them to truly appreciate what happened that day? I don't know and that's why I wanted to hear from other parents who took their kids to see what their reaction was.

Thanks Aussie, I definitely appreciate hearing what you did. We will be going to St. Paul's as well so thanks for sharing your thoughts on doing it instead of the memorial.

Edited: 13 July 2012, 11:58
Sydney
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5. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

Another thing I should add is that when we there with the kids in 2010 the site was not what it is today. I would have no hesitation taking the kids now. Back then it was a construction site.

Boston
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6. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

" There are also reviews that talk of very long lines. So that worries me. My tickets are for 6:30 PM on a Saturday night, so maybe the crowds won't be so bad then. "

I only addressed the security, yes the lines at times can be long but move fairly fast. We have been 3 times over the past couple of years and lines have never been an issue for us but we usually go in the AM.

new york city
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7. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

a five minute explanation of what happened that day and a quick visit to Youtube where i am sure there is lots of video of the events will bring it into focus for the kids--- the memorial itself is well done and is like visiting any other memorial like the Vietnam Memorial in DC--- I don't think they need a deep understanding of the event but I doubt if they will be deeply moved by being there.

I was not by the way talking about your specific parenting skills but rather the generation of today's parents--- i find that many think their kids are still 5 years old and know nothing or if they live in places like Park slope Brooklyn they think their kids are all candidates for Mensa and could write a book on the topic of 9/11--- the truth is of course reality is somewhere in the middle.

I suspect with your kids background as you spell it out here they will be fine.

Manhattan
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8. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

Agree with all of the above. I recently had a group where we couldn't go to the memorial but I did give them time at the preview site which is really quite graphic. I later found out that at least one of the parents had never talked to her children about 9/11 so it was disturbing for the child.

You'll be fine as long as you have conversations beforehand.

…typepad.com/explorenyc/2012/06/wtc-neighbor…

New York City, New...
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9. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

Only you know your own children - It is not possible for anyone here to answer the question of whether your children will help them relate to the events, or will it be hard for them to truly appreciate what happened that day?"

Every child/person is different so even if some parents here say their kids did so, that wouldn't (obviously) mean anything with respect to your kids.

Have you talked to them about this yet (9/11 and the memorial)? Why not discuss it with them and see what you learn about what they know, feel, etc?

Mesa, Arizona
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10. Re: 9/11 Memorial visit with kids?

With such a short about of time, I would put off 9/11 memorial to the next visit.

There's a great museum downtown: National Museum of the American Indian:

http://nmai.si.edu/home/

Fire department Museum (small admission fee)

http://www.nycfiremuseum.org/

Kind of depends what else you've planned. You dont want to spend ALL your time on the subway traveling to/from.