Spring break. It’s the stuff of nightmares for parents. Keg stands. Bikini contests. Visions of James Franco in cornrows and a grill. But for some moms and dads, worries about the trouble high schoolers might encounter on the beaches of Cancun or Daytona Beach are resolved with one quick fix: They’re coming along.

We learned about this travel trend from several moms of high school seniors who had just returned from an intergenerational trip to the Bahamas. The kids stayed in one hotel, the parents in a more upscale resort nearby, and both groups felt more secure knowing that if, say, someone wound up needing to go to the hospital, or encountering some other sort of emergency on foreign soil, the moms were just a beach-walk away.

moms partying on spring break
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They booked their trip through an agency called GradCity, which offers a Parent Program geared specifically toward groups of moms, dads and soon-to-be grads. GradCity books everyone’s airfare, hotel accommodations, cultural excursions, dining experiences and even parties for the spring breakers. Perhaps most importantly, agency reps chaperone the teens in da club. Reads one parent testimonial: “Everyone that went on the trip had a great time and definitely [has] some great Senior Year memories to last a lifetime... The team at GradCity did a great job taking the kids to the clubs at night and keeping an eye on them. Thanks again. We enjoyed Cancun so much that the parent group is considering a trip in the fall after the kids go off to school!"

young woman partying on spring break
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Indeed, the moms we spoke with had little interest in restricting their teens’ fun at the bars and casinos in locales where the legal drinking and gambling age is 18. They simply wanted to be close enough to step in should a crisis arise. In fact, if anyone went wild, it was the over-40 set. “We felt like we were in Bad Moms!” laughed one mom of their hotel shenanigans. “We had the best time!”

 So what to make of all this? One the one hand, it feels like the inevitable destination after 18 years of helicopter parenting—the dangerous zone where attachment and codependence converge. Are these the same parents who will call their child’s boss to advocate for a raise on their behalf? What’s next? Momchella? On the other hand, sign us right on up. When we’re talking about the prospect of a 17-year-old binge drinking for the first time in an international casino, what parent wouldn’t opt for “better safe than sorry?” After all, when your daughter meets a guy named “Dangeruss” at the craps table, wouldn’t you jump at the chance to make sure she walks away?

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