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Topic: Who has kids? How does this effect your riding habits?  (Read 9895 times)

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knuckledonkey
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« on: April 28, 2011, 11:00:21 AM »

When I was growing up, my dad had a little Honda Scrambler. He used to commute to SF from the East Bay on this thing.

I remember riding on the back (No helmet of course) and being scared and thrilled at the same time.

He got rid of that bike early on because (he said) he now had familial responsibilities. Also, I think he was a workaholic.

It took him until he was 60-something and retired to get back on the bike. I took the MSF course with him when I was 27.

I too have a family with 2 awesome kids, 10 and 8 and a very loving and understanding wife.

But I am not going to wait until I am retired to get out and explore the world on 2 wheels. Vita brevis.

I am curious to know how folks with a family of any kind, but especially with young kids who depend on you, ride.

Do you plan long trips? Does your wife ride with you? Do you push the envelope or ride conservatively? How do you think you would do things differently if you were single or had no dependents?
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« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2011, 11:08:10 AM »

One child -- wife rides. She cut back greatly after the daughter arrived, to almost nothing.

I, too, cut back a great deal, but it was no sacrifice (wanting to not miss a thing), but never stopped . . .

Long rides, multiday trips decreased in number, but slowly increased as daughter became more independent.

I dug being a dad -- balancing responsibilities and desires is tough, but it can be done.
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« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2011, 11:40:44 AM »

It definitely has an effect on the time I have to go on longer rides. I try to take a kid with me for shorter/fun rides. But I usually only do one overnighter a year now. I do feel like I ride more conservatively.

IMO a person who is unwilling to make any compromises to his/her personal enjoyment/time/hobbies/whatever shouldn't be married or have kids. Marriage and parenthood should always be first priority. Compromises are inevitable.
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« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2011, 11:45:32 AM »

More family time, less riding time.  Commuted kids on the back in good weather.

But:  I have an extremely understanding and non risk-adverse wife.
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« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2011, 11:46:25 AM »

3 kids...8, 5, and 2.  I still ride.  I commute daily, get out for 2 or 3 hr rides every once in a while, do about one weekend long trip per year and about one track day a year.  My wife rides as well, but not as much as I do.  

Having kids has definitely changed my attitude towards riding.  I'm more conservative on the road and I'm not as adamant about being 'that guy that rides no matter the weather' as I used to be.  Plus, I ride ATGATT.  

Had I not married or had kids...oh man.  My garage would be stacked with bikes and gear.  I'd race and do trackdays frequently and weekend sport-touring trips would happen all the time.  BUT, my kids are my life and bring so much joy that I don't consider toning down my riding wishes to spend more time with them a sacrifice at all.  
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« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2011, 11:47:36 AM »

I have never pushed any evelopes on a motorcycle. I am a boring rider that knows his limits and will not go beyond them ever. When my first born came along all bikes were sold. 14 years later I started riding again. Truthfully I should not have stopped in the first place. Anyway both my sons ride and I am sure my daughter will want to when she is old enough. She has been bugging me for a dirt bike for the last two years as it is. Yes my wife rides, with me and on her own bike.
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« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2011, 12:06:14 PM »

I have 3 daughters,  I had to sell both my '85 K100RS and my '79 R100RT to buy a house when the youngest was born but I bought a used V65 Sabre a month later. Sometimes the only riding I got in was the 75 mile round trip to work and back but I still rode almost every day. I rode a secession of cheap used bikes for years until my finances improved enough to start buying new again. It's funny, when I got my K bike I told my daughter I finally got back what I lost when she was born, a BMW twin and a BMW 4 cylinder. Only took 19 years.... Lol
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« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2011, 12:18:40 PM »


It definitely has an effect on the time I have to go on longer rides. I try to take a kid with me for shorter/fun rides. But I usually only do one overnighter a year now. I do feel like I ride more conservatively.

IMO a person who is unwilling to make any compromises to his/her personal enjoyment/time/hobbies/whatever shouldn't be married or have kids. Marriage and parenthood should always be first priority. Compromises are inevitable.



Had I not married or had kids...oh man.  My garage would be stacked with bikes and gear.  I'd race and do trackdays frequently and weekend sport-touring trips would happen all the time.  BUT, my kids are my life and bring so much joy that I don't consider toning down my riding wishes to spend more time with them a sacrifice at all.  


Plus one to both of the above posters.  Especially "BUT, my kids are my life and bring so much joy that I don't consider toning down my riding wishes to spend more time with them a sacrifice at all."

My first wife made me get rid of the guns and the bikes   Nuts  The one that has put up with me for the past 28 years suggested that I get some guns and did not use them on me when I brought home the Hayabusa 9 years ago.  Now there are 9 in the garage, 6 are mine (the family bikes) and 3 are my one son's bikes.  I get out for one, maybe two long rides a year for me and a lot of little rides with the kids, both in the dirt and street.  My boys all ride and one of my daughters rides. After I got the Busa my oldest daughter would go for rides with me and we would get an ice-cream and she would actually TALK to me.  Those of you with teenage daughters know it is something rare to have your daughter talk with you very much.
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« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2011, 12:30:51 PM »

When I learned that my wife was pregnant, I self imposed a riding restriction until my life insurance was substantially increased.

A good year is about 5000 miles of riding.  I don't commute to work since it's all boring slab (well the newness of the Street Triple has temporarily changed that - take a long way in).  I still take day long rides with buddies and about 3 multi day trips per year (3-5 days each).  

I'm doing good when I get a full day ride or multi day ride once per month.

Riding from Charlotte, the rides are all high quality.  Mountains within 80-100 miles for full day rides or lots of nice rolling hills on the north east side of the city for short rides.    

     

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« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2011, 12:38:06 PM »

I've got three kids, but no change in my riding habits. Although at the local farmer's market, when one of the other vendors there found out I rode a bike, she loudly exclaims "What! Why! Don't you love your kids!"..
I didn't really have a polite reply for her other than just smiling and giving her a dumb look.. Headscratch
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« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2011, 12:38:12 PM »

I have a wife that rides as a passenger and a 7 y.o. that can't reach the pegs yet.
Before my daughter, riding was our life. Everything we did revolved around motorcycles.
After my daughter was born priorities changed. My wifes participation has greatly decreased. We take a 4-5 day MC vacation while my daughter is at summer camp.
We get together with a few other riders twice a month June- Sept for a few hours. I take a solo week long moto-camping trip each year. I commute by MC when weather permits.
Certainly there have been changes but I see no reason that I would need to stop riding or not own a bike to focus on my family.
 
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« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2011, 12:53:51 PM »

I put the bike in storage when my daughter was born and due to time and money constraints it sat there for close to 3.5 years.  Now the bike is back on the road and my riding has changed.

I am way more attentive when I ride and no longer push my limits as I used to.  

I am much more strict with myself about gear, no more jeans, either armored riding pants or cage.  

I actually look at the weather report now to decide IF I'm going to ride as opposed to looking at it for gear selection.

I am hoping to get some weekend and day trips in this year but with family, house, work, money, etc. I don't know if I'll be able to.  Those times will come again.  I commute to work occasionally which is nice for me because I am always going someplace different.

My wife does not ride, has never been on the back of my bike, and is nervous when I ride until I pull back in the driveway.  The fact that she has never asked me to get rid of it, or not ride and told me she would never make me choose between my passion and her is just one of the reasons I love her.   Inlove
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« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2011, 12:59:18 PM »

My wife and I have two kids, 8 and 12.  They love to ride along on short trips - "Take me!"...  "No - take me!"  My wife is starting her own love of riding now that she has her own bike.  She used to ride with me somewhat regularly, but she wanted her own ride.  My parents have been riding a very long time, and I have extended family that ride also.  So it's all pretty normal to ride.

I get out to ride 1/2-days, full days, weekends, and at least one multi-day trip a year.  Plus commuting.  I'm involved in my kids' lives, so I don't feel guilt taking my own time to get away.  I ride moderately fast, though sometimes pretty conservative too.

If I were single with no kids, I would have more bikes and go on many more bike trips - no doubt!  There is no way I'd want to put aside riding until I retire!  
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« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2011, 02:59:35 PM »

When I was younger and had small kids I followed the rule of allowing an extra inch between the ends of my handlebars and the trees for each dependant.  
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« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2011, 03:14:59 PM »

Interesting thread. Having just had my first (and only) kid last September my riding this year will be down from previous years. I'll go from two to one long weekend (3-4 day) ride and no week long ride this year. Next year I should be back in the swing of things. I picked up my new bike a week after she was born so everybody knows how I roll  Thumbsup
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« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2011, 04:02:44 PM »

My riding has not been affected by my having children. I entertain thoughts of going back to racing. Maybe not a full balls out 1000cc racebike, but something that feeds my desire to be committed to riding a motorcycle well.  

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« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2011, 06:30:42 PM »

I have two kids, 4 and 7.  It definitely cuts down on my riding some, but that's OK.  The worst part was in my previous job I would get home, grab the truck, then get the kids, since the kids were the other direction from the house, plus it was a 17 mile commute, which was awesome.  My new job puts me closer to where the kids are (kids are on the way home), plus the commute is only 3.2 miles, which sucks.  

As for trips- yep, it cuts down, but again, that's OK.  I did the James Bay Road last summer which was a longer, multi-day trip.  This summer it will only be a long weekend on a "throughout the state" tour (probably up to the U.P.), but again, that's part of the deal.

I am blessed with a wonderful wife who understands my need to get out once in awhile.  A cousin of mine once questions my bikes and why she allows me to ride.  She said, "It's cheaper than an affair!"   Lol  I'm a lucky man!   Bigok
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« Reply #17 on: April 28, 2011, 07:02:10 PM »

Two kids; now grown and ride themselves. I never stopped riding-- rode to my Lamaze classes while pregnant. When the kids were very little, rode at night when they were in bed, just to get a bit of time on 2 wheels. When they got big enough to reach the pegs, rode with them as passengers.  Riding was important to me, and I never bought into the 'You can't risk' idea. Just was as careful as I normally was.

Here's my younger son on his latest acquisition - bought on STN!  Bigsmile



I've a 3-month old granddaughter now. Can't wait to introduce her to the joys of motorcycling.

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« Reply #18 on: April 28, 2011, 08:23:42 PM »

I've stopped taking the wife for rides years ago, can't stand the thought of leaving my 10 year old orphaned. In 10 years or so I'll buy a Goldwing and she and I will resume exploring the rocky mountains. As far as me quitting, not a chance - I have slowed it down though.
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« Reply #19 on: April 28, 2011, 08:44:47 PM »

When the kids were little I remember busting down a back road about 80 and thinking to myself...."what in the world a you doing? You've got a wife, two kids, and a mortgage....slow down!" and I did, almost stopped riding for many years.  Later, when my boy started riding on the road with me, I was real cautious and wanted to make sure I set a good example for him.  Over the next few years, as his riding improved to a point where he could leave me behind, I decided I would have to push myself if I didn't want him to do do.  I also figured out that I could slow down a little and still enjoy myself.  As a matter of fact, I've really just started riding so that I could avoid any more AH SH*T moments, I like going fast, but more important is just being smooth and comfortable.
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