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User Topic: National Holocaust Museum???
timeforchange
Member
Member # 27454
Default  Posted: 1:17 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

We will be in DC next week and are sooooo looking forward to it.

I just want to lead up to my question by saying that my boys (13 & 9) both want to join the military. They have a large knowledge of WW2 history. Last week we went to Belgium followed in the footsteps of E-company (Band of Brothers).
We have visited numerous WW2 and WW1 cemeteries and museum.

Whilst in DC I would like to take them to the National Holocaust Museum. We live in Germany (but are British)... I think they need to truly understand what happened to the Jews.

With my 13 year old I have no qualms.

But the website of the museum does not recommend it to under 11s. My 9 year old is gifted. He talks and reasons like a teenager. He has seen many WW2 sites.

To people who have visited the National Holocaust Museum... I am expecting the permenant exhibition to be haunting and emotional. Are there any exhibits there which you would categorically rule out for a mature, historically aware 9 year old??????

Thanks for any guidance / opinions.


Me = BS aged 43
2 boys, 13 and 9
DDay 1/19/10
Confronted him 2/16/10
Finally Divorced 8/29/12

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”


Posts: 726 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: Expats in Europe
simplydevastated
Member
Member # 25001
Default  Posted: 1:39 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

I was there years ago. If I remember correctly there's two parts to the museum a free part and a pay part. We were short on time so we only went through the free part. If it's still set up like this it starts out in a little boys bedroom, I believe his name is Daniel or David. Then it walks you through him and his family getting ushered into the Ghettos and then to camps. As you walk it goes from bright and happy to dark and creepy. I've heard there's a room filled with shoes, but we didn't see that it could have been in another part of the museum.

If your son can handle it then I'd say take him. I would just prepare him for what he'll see. Maybe pick up a book at the library or visit some websites.

Here's a link to the museum for more information.

http://www.ushmm.org/


Me - BS, 39 (I'm not old...I'm vintage)
Two Wonderful children - DS10, DD7
Married, for now... (4+ D-Day - listed in profile.)

Posts: 5854 | Registered: Jul 2009 | From: In the darkest depths of hell!
timeforchange
Member
Member # 27454
Default  Posted: 1:56 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

Thanks simply....

I checked the site and it has a child oriented exhibition called Daniels Story... See through the eyes of a young boy.

I know my 13 year old wants to see the permanent exhibition and I am on the fence about whether or not to go into that part.

My gut is telling me to first visit the children's exhibition and see how that goes.....

I was taught history at school by a woman who survived Auschwitz as a young child. It seemed she resembled one of the guards daughters and he protected and fed her. The other 23 members of her family did not survive the camp.


Me = BS aged 43
2 boys, 13 and 9
DDay 1/19/10
Confronted him 2/16/10
Finally Divorced 8/29/12

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”


Posts: 726 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: Expats in Europe
simplydevastated
Member
Member # 25001
Default  Posted: 2:11 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

Ok, so that is the part that we saw, Daniel's story.

That would be a good idea to see that part first. Let him dictate what he's comfortable with. My son knows a lot about history and WWII and I'm not sure how comfortable he would be.

That is so sad. She's lucky he was there to protect her.

A woman I worked with grew up in Poland and her family hid two Jewish girls in a pile of hay. She told me that some soldiers came to their house looking for them and they were scared they would be found because then they would be arrested. They never found the girls.

When I worked for a jewelry store a woman came in to a have a ring cleaned, it was a gold band, and she told me that it survived the holocaust. I was so scared to handle it I didn't want anything to happen to it.


Me - BS, 39 (I'm not old...I'm vintage)
Two Wonderful children - DS10, DD7
Married, for now... (4+ D-Day - listed in profile.)

Posts: 5854 | Registered: Jul 2009 | From: In the darkest depths of hell!
yewtree
Member
Member # 16671
Default  Posted: 2:45 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

If you want to go to the main exhibit, y ou need to get there early and buy your tickets. They sell out fast, and there are only so many sold per day.
I made that mistake and was only able to see Daniel's story, which was very well done, and quite humbling.


Me(BS)45(at the time of D-day)

Divorced 2009, Closing on house Nov 2011 -
No longer waiting for the other "she" to drop.


Posts: 4665 | Registered: Oct 2007
hurtbs
Member
Member # 10866
Default  Posted: 2:51 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

Keep in mind that the Holocaust museum has images, stories, and elements that are incredibly graphic - nudity, dead bodies (including children), etc. When I was there, they had a video running of bulldozers pushing thousands of bodies into mass graves. I have a very high tolerance - I've seen blood sports in person, surgeries, autopsy, even video image of an execution. This imagery was highly disturbing to me.

Keep in mind that the warning is not about the academic/intellectual age of your children, it's about the emotional age and ability to grasp and understand it.

They don't censor anything in the museum - which is great. They shouldn't. However, that means there is a lot of torture, death, rape, etc in graphic detail that your child will see.


Me BW Him XSAWH
DDays 2006, and then numerous more
Divorced 2012

"In life, unlike chess, the game continues after checkmate." - Asimov
"Be patient and tough; someday this pain will be useful to you." - Ovid


Posts: 15325 | Registered: Jun 2006
Amazonia
Member
Member # 32810
Default  Posted: 3:01 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

Will you have another adult along who can sit outside with your 9yo while you continue through with the 13yo if it becomes too much for him?


"You yourself deserve your love and affection as much as anybody in the universe." -Buddha
"Let's face it, life is a crap shoot." -Sad in AZ

Posts: 13738 | Registered: Jul 2011
Newlease
Member
Member # 7767
Default  Posted: 3:08 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

I toured the paid part of the museum last May. It had a very profound affect on me - I left the museum in tears.

There is a LOT of reading - there is really so much material about the lead up to the war. It was very informative, but it takes a long time to read all the material. I'm not sure a young child (albeit mature) would have the patience for that type of time commitment.

NL


Even if you can't control the world around you, you are still the master of your own soul.

Posts: 7690 | Registered: Aug 2005
Rebreather
Member
Member # 30817
Default  Posted: 3:11 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

It is a powerful, powerful experience.

Many exhibits, while graphic, also allow you the choice to view the whole thing or not. IIRC, there were little half walls in places that you can bend over to view more or not, as your choice.

To do the museum justice, you need a few hours at least. I didn't have enough time while there.


Me BS
Him WH
2 ddays in '07
Recovering.
"The cure for the pain, is the pain." -Rumi

Posts: 6442 | Registered: Jan 2011
lynnm1947
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Member # 15300
Default  Posted: 3:16 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

My children went with their dad when they were young teenagers. Apparently they were assigned a number and found out at the end whether they lived or died. They both said it was an incredibly moving experience.


Age: 64..ummmmmmm, no...............65....no...oh, hell born in 1947. You figure it out!

"I could have missed the pain, but I would have had to miss the dance." Garth Brooks


Posts: 7213 | Registered: Jul 2007 | From: Toronto, Canada
timeforchange
Member
Member # 27454
Default  Posted: 3:31 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

Hurtbs.... Thank you that is the type of detail I was hoping to find out.....

Hmmm I need to think long and hard about this.

Thank to you for sharing your experiences of the museum and war stories.

Having read all your descriptions I think it may be best to stick with Daniel's story only.

Thanks everyone


Me = BS aged 43
2 boys, 13 and 9
DDay 1/19/10
Confronted him 2/16/10
Finally Divorced 8/29/12

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”


Posts: 726 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: Expats in Europe
Eranda
Member
Member # 6010
Default  Posted: 6:15 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

My kids are 14 and 15 and they went with my parents this summer, with my blessing. Both kids were very moved by it, and I doubt they will forget it for the rest of their lives.


My Blog: http://allofthewaystohell.com/

Posts: 4226 | Registered: Dec 2004 | From: eastern PA
Williesmom
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Member # 22870
Default  Posted: 6:20 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

I went to the holocaust museum in Israel. I will never forget it - you could hear a pin drop throughout the entire place.

I'm going to dc next month, and would like to see it, but my travel companions don't want to go.


You can stuff your sorries in a sack, mister. -George Costanza
There is a special place in hell for women who don't help other women. - Madeleine Albright

Posts: 7643 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: Western PA
gonnabe2016
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Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 9:16 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

It's been quite a while since I went there, but I don't think that my oldest was more than 12 (possibly a bit younger)

I don't remember having any *gasp* moments -- so I do think that some of the more graphic videos may be sheltered.

IIRC, there was a replica of the 'ovens'.

The only part of the tour that I clearly remember, and will never forget, is the room of shoes.
Real shoes from the real people. Thousands of shoes.

It truly is one of the best historical museums that I've ever visited.


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 8005 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
Jeaniegirl
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Member # 6370
Default  Posted: 11:54 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)

It's a wonderful experience. It sounds as if your sons are intelligent enough to understand and realize what they are seeing. I think everyone should see it. There are benches throughout and it's not unusual to see people sitting and crying softly - so if this would bother your sons, that's a decision you have to make. I was totally overwhelmed by the glass room full of hair and another full of shoes. I also was moved to tears by the exhibit showing what happened to gay people.

Upon entering we were given leather looking 'passports' and assigned a name of a real Jewish person during that horrible time and it was only at the end of the tour if we found out if we were gassed or survived.


"Because I deserve better"

Posts: 979 | Registered: Feb 2005
tushnurse
Member
Member # 21101
Default  Posted: 8:45 AM, August 7th (Wednesday)

I have not been, so that is my disclaimer ....
But being that this may be one of those once in a lifetime things I would strongly urge to mentally prepare your son of the things he might see, and that if it's too much then you can leave.
I have two amazingly gifted kids, who are history buffs, and have spent a large amount of time reading, and learing about WWII. If I had the opportunity at age 9 I would have taken them.
However I have always been of the opinion that sheltering them from the reality of the world does more harm than good. They both have been exposed to things sooner than a lot of other parents would.

I do feel strongly that it is something that we should all be reminded of and understand what really happened to an entire race of people. History repeats itself, unless we all do something to prevent it.


Me: FBS
Him: FWS
Kids: 15 & 17
Married for 22 years now, was 16 at the time. .
D-Day Sept 26 2008
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Posts: 8506 | Registered: Oct 2008 | From: St. Louis
stroppy_wanadoo
Member
Member # 11224
Default  Posted: 1:34 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)

We are going to DC tomorrow with our kids, ages 9 and 12. After long discussions with others who have been there, we've opted not to take them at this time.

While I would like to go myself and want my children to go at some point in their lives, I don't think it appropriate at these ages. It is the emotional impact I worry about. I want cultured, respectful children, yet I also feel the strong urge to protect their innocence for just a few years more.


Posts: 1033 | Registered: Jul 2006
timeforchange
Member
Member # 27454
Default  Posted: 3:47 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)

Have a great time stroppy wanadoo..

I have been going back and forth on this all day... It's a tough decision.

Thanks once more for all the different points of view.

I think this weekend I will show DS 9 some of the least barbaric images of the Holocaust... And observe how he handles it and talk to him about the history.

It's a tough one.


Me = BS aged 43
2 boys, 13 and 9
DDay 1/19/10
Confronted him 2/16/10
Finally Divorced 8/29/12

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”


Posts: 726 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: Expats in Europe
caregiver9000
Member
Member # 28622
Default  Posted: 4:03 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)

There is a virtual tour and collection of photos, journals, and artifacts at remember.org. This would be a way to measure his interest and emotional sturdiness for the topic. It is less overwhelming because it is on the computer screen. You can "look away." But the content and the idea that human cruelty was beyond measure is there. If your children had questions they would have time and privacy to frame them.

Good luck with your decision.

eta: the virtual tour is of the actual concentration camps, not the Holocaust Museum.

[This message edited by caregiver9000 at 4:05 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)]


Me: 44, independent, happy, despite co-parenting with a lower muppet
FT "Stretch" (and Skew!) ;)
DS 13 DS 10
S 5/2010
D 12/2012

Posts: 5818 | Registered: May 2010 | From: a better place
Teach8
Member
Member # 36521
Default  Posted: 4:18 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)

I was just there this may...all the tickets for every weekend were gone through july. So just a heads up. We were lucky enough to get in because my husband is a police officer. Fire, police and government employess can go without tickets. I was grateful that my children weren't there...two boys who are 10 and 8. We plan to go again when they are 14 and 12. I doubt mine are as mature as yours but it was incredibly emotional. They have a section where they have tv's down low in the ground and big walls around them. All the tv's show footage of experiments that were conducted on children. That was truly gut wrenching. But it is also something you can keep younger kids away from, and I'm sure it was designed that way. It is also incredibly quiet. It takes a long time to go through the museum...I would never have been able to take in the museum the way I did if they had been with me the first time through. Either way, it is such an important and moving experience.


Me: BW. Him: WH. Dday: 4/26/12. TT until 8/15/12 LTA 7 years. Trying to R

Posts: 506 | Registered: Aug 2012
solus sto
Member
Member # 30989
Default  Posted: 9:11 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)

It's an emotional experience---but given the maturity of your gifted 9-year-old, I suspect it will be okay, as long as you are able to be flexible if he (or anyone else in your group!) finds it to be overwhelming.

You've laid such good groundwork, and both of your boys are well aware of what occurred during the World Wars.

The Holocaust Museum humanizes the history---and some of the images are jarring. But they are jarring for adults and 13-year-olds, too.

The Museum's recommendation for an 11-year-old cut-off is relatively arbitrary and based on "average" kids--not kids who are gifted, well-educated on the topic, interested, and historically sensitive.

That said, I would expect the experience to profoundly affect all of you.

It hits hard, when faces are put to the atrocities.

But again, I think it hits all who have empathy.

I probably would've taken my son at 9. He, too, is gifted, and was weaned on history. It's his passion. But I would do so with a willingness to skip or exit exhibits.


BS-me, 52
WH (Trac-fone), 52, PD
2 kids-DD25, DS18
multiple d-days
DIVORCING
Alone, most strangely, I live on~Rupert Brooke

Posts: 8683 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: midwest
timeforchange
Member
Member # 27454
Default  Posted: 11:49 PM, August 7th (Wednesday)

Caregiver... Many thanks for that link.
We will check that out before we leave for the USA.

Teach8... I have just been online and ordered tickets for this coming Wednesday.
The cost was only USD 1 each... Thanks for the heads up.

Still thinking it over...


Me = BS aged 43
2 boys, 13 and 9
DDay 1/19/10
Confronted him 2/16/10
Finally Divorced 8/29/12

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”


Posts: 726 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: Expats in Europe
caregiver9000
Member
Member # 28622
Default  Posted: 1:51 AM, August 8th (Thursday)

The platform is not the easiest to navigate. I think the Then & Now photograph and artwork is the easiest format to get what you might be looking for. There is a room of shoes. One room full of shoes representing one day of gassing. It certainly gives you a platform for the conversations that you might want to have.

I have used this website as a tool in the classroom. If you have any questions about it let me know via PM.


Me: 44, independent, happy, despite co-parenting with a lower muppet
FT "Stretch" (and Skew!) ;)
DS 13 DS 10
S 5/2010
D 12/2012

Posts: 5818 | Registered: May 2010 | From: a better place
Skye
Member
Member # 325
Default  Posted: 8:38 AM, August 8th (Thursday)

We are American. One question my 11 year old asked and maybe you should be prepared for, "did America know this was happening, mom?" Of course, I had to say, "yes," and then you can imagine the questions that followed that I hated to have to answer for him. He was able to handle the horror of the museum but understanding the psychology behind it was a bigger issue for him. when it came to our own country. (For me, too.)

[This message edited by Skye at 8:39 AM, August 8th (Thursday)]


Posts: 5620 | Registered: Jul 2002
Topic Posts: 24