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Q:

What are some strategies for helping children understand and cope with their parents' work or school schedules?

Hi everyone,

I am a concerned parent and I'm looking for some strategies that can help my child understand and cope with my work schedule. As a parent, I work long hours and have a demanding job, which often leaves me with very little time for my child. I have noticed that this is causing some emotional distress to my child who feels neglected and disconnected from me.

I would like to know what are some effective strategies or techniques that I can use to help my child cope with my schedule? How can I explain to my child about my work without making him/her feel like I'm not interested in their life?

Any advice or suggestions from parents who have faced similar situations would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

All Replies

hubert36

Hey User,

I can totally relate to your concerns, as my partner's job often requires long hours and frequent travel, leaving our child and me feeling disconnected. One approach that has helped us is to create a visual calendar together. At the beginning of the month, we sit down as a family and plan out our schedules. We note important events like school activities, parent-teacher conferences, and meetups with friends and family.

This has helped our child to understand why the parent is not around and when they are available/ not available. It also helps them to know how to plan their own activities and makes them feel as though they have some control over their own schedule. It's a great way to maintain good communication and transparency between you and your child.

Another thing that has worked for us and might work for you as well is maintaining a designated parent-child time. Even if it's only two hours every weekend, it can be a time to focus solely on your child and give them your undivided attention.

I hope these ideas are helpful for you. Remember, every family has unique challenges, but sharing our experiences can help us all find solutions that work.

bulah71

Hello everyone,

As a grandparent who often takes care of my grandchildren while their parents work, I can attest to the importance of structure and consistency. Children thrive on routine, and having a consistent schedule can help them understand their parent's work schedule and cope better with it.

I work with my grandkids to establish a consistent daily routine which includes a set wake-up time, mealtimes, homework time, and playtime. This helps them to know what to expect from each day, and it also helps them to stay on track with schoolwork.

Another thing I have found helpful is to keep the lines of communication open. I make sure to talk to them often and update them about their parent's schedule. I also encourage them to express their feelings and any concerns they might have.

Lastly, I make sure that they stay in touch with their parents while they are at work. Whether it's through phone calls or video chats, it's essential to maintain a connection between children and their parents.

Overall, I strongly believe that having structure, communication, and consistency can help children cope with their parent's work schedule.

johns.mikayla

Hello everyone,

As a teacher, I have seen many students struggling with the busy work schedules of their parents. One approach that I have found helpful in my classroom is to promote empathy and understanding among students. Teachers can have lessons and activities that help students understand what it means to have parents with demanding careers and how it affects families.

By fostering empathy among students, we can create a supportive and inclusive environment where everyone understands each other's unique living situations. It also helps students to develop critical thinking skills and considerate behaviors towards different family structures.

Additionally, schools can offer after-school programs or structured activities that children can participate in when their parents are at work. This can help children feel engaged and included while providing them with opportunities for learning, socialization, and physical activities.

Finally, parents and teachers can work together to form partnerships to support children who are struggling to cope with the stress of their parent's work schedule. Teachers can provide insights into the child's behavior and well-being, and parents can explain their situation better. This collaboration can help facilitate effective communication and understanding among all involved parties.

In conclusion, fostering empathy among students, offering after-school activities, and developing collaboration among teachers and parents are some strategies that can help students cope better with their parents' work schedules.

saul97

Hello everyone,

As a child of a working parent, I can understand why it can be distressing when parents work long hours. However, there are several things that parents can do to help their children understand and cope with their busy schedules.

Firstly, parents can try to schedule quality time with their children in the evenings or on weekends. It doesn't have to be a full-day activity, but it can be something small that the child looks forward to during the week like cooking dinner or helping with the laundry. This can make a huge difference in the child's life and make them feel valued and important.

Secondly, it's essential for parents to keep their children informed about their work schedule as much as possible. Even if it's just letting them know about an upcoming business trip or long days at work. This can help the child to plan ahead and feel less anxious.

Finally, parents can try to involve their children in their work lives. They can bring their children to work or talk to them about what they do. This can help the child to understand better what their parent's job entails and appreciate all the work that goes into keeping the family, home, and finances in good order.

In conclusion, I think that communication, planning, and involving children in parent's work can help them understand and cope with the stress of a busy work schedule.

theodora11

Hello everyone,

I can understand the concerns of parents who are trying to find a balance between work and family. As a single working parent, I find that communication is key. I always make sure to talk to my child about my work schedule so that they know when I will be home and when I won't.

Every day, when I come home from work, I make sure to spend some quality time with my child, whether it's by asking how their day was or simply watching their favorite TV show together. I also make sure to plan outings with them on weekends or take them to their sports or hobby classes.

In addition, I make sure to prepare ahead of time for school events like parent-teacher conferences and school plays, so I don't have to miss them due to my work schedule. Even if I can't be physically present all the time, I make sure to show my support for my child through a call, text or a message, and then ask about the event or activity later.

It's challenging to balance work and parenting, but I find that by communicating, being present in my child's life, and planning ahead, I can make sure that my child understands and copes well with my work schedule.

karlee.senger

Hi everyone,

As a counselor, I have many clients who struggle with balancing work and family life. One strategy that I have seen work well is teaching children to express their feelings in healthy ways. Sometimes, children may feel angry, sad or neglected when their parent is at work more often than they would like. In such situations, children may act out or demonstrate negative behaviors.

Parents can encourage their children to express these feelings in a constructive and healthy way, such as through writing in a journal, drawing or talking to them. This will help parents understand how their child is feeling, and they can work together to come up with a solution that works for everyone.

Another technique is to create memories and experiences that children can look forward to- a special family night or weekend trip. This can help them focus on the positive instead of feeling upset over their parent's work schedule.

Lastly, caregivers, family members, or friends can step in and offer support to parents and children. Even help with general household duties or childcare can alleviate some of the pressure on parents, giving them more time for bonding and relaxing with their children.

To sum up, I believe teaching children to express their feelings in healthy ways, creating positive experiences, and having support systems in place can help children understand and cope better with their parent's work schedule.

katelin40

Hi User,

I completely understand the difficulties of juggling parenting and a demanding career. I have a full-time job and two kids, and it's been quite a challenge. One thing that has worked for me is involving the kids in my work as much as possible. I explain to them about my job responsibilities, the deadlines I have, and how it is important for me to complete my work on time.

By involving them in my work, they feel like a part of my life and understand the importance of my job. Additionally, I make sure to set aside some time specifically for them each week, where we can do something together like watch a movie, play a game or go for a walk. This helps us to bond and create a stronger relationship.

It took some trial and error but these strategies seem to be working for my family. Maybe this could work for you and your child as well. Good luck!

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