View Full Version : Parents with no support network what do you do?
My DP has just started working away 4 weeks on 1 week off and this has been his second stint. We have 4 kids 18,13,2 and 11 mths.
He has always worked away over the time we have been together and sometimes longer than this and I have coped ok with the two older girls but now we have the two littlies I am finding it very hard. I don't have any family support nearby.
I am wondering what those of you in the same situation do?
I'm 'fortunate' in that my eldest is mildly autistic and we qualify for support for respite from our local council, but having said that, I dont get many hours to use and usually use them for things such as dr appointments. Apart from that I'm on my own with my 4 and 2 on the way for half the working week.
I find it quite hard without my husband being around to help me out. What saves me is putting the 2 little ones into daycare 1-2 days a week. I use those days to go wander around the shops, go to the movies or just chill out at home. Are you able to do this with your little ones? If anyone needs the 'break' from our kids to regain a bit of sanity, it's mums like us, so dont feel guilty about doing it, because I dont.
Dont get sick :laughing:
My DH works away anywhere from 8-12wks. He is on a ship that goes to Japan so not easy for him to get home.
Thank god I rarely get sick cos I have no family and only just starting to make some friends.
I put DS (23mths) into daycare for 1day per week to spend time with DD (4). She is a great help and very good if I dont feel very well. Luckily she is very independent.
At the moment Im working 2 days and DD goes to Kindy and DS daycare. I get no break. Next year I will keep DS in daycare just so I can have some me time to have DR appts and go to the shops.
Yes it is hard hubby works away 3/3 we have 4 kiddies also.....with the 2 youngest being hard work. Our 2 yr old is in daycare 1 day a week so thats the day i get things done or the food shopping, my parents live an hour away but i can't call on them for help, so yes i am on my own........very hard but it is doable.....all the best
We had three kids in 3 years and 3 months, our first two are 17months apart I can tell you we didn't have much support prior to DH starting to work away and even less now. It's hard but you just make it work. I have DHs family about 45mins away now which is helpful should it be extreme emergency and should it happen to fit into their schedules or don't have a better offer:rolleyes: but they were no help when they were only 5mins up the road, now I just have less obligation to go visit them and the fact they don't want to spend time with our kids their grandchildren and make a bigger effort with their own daughter and her kids when her very hands on DH is home majority of the time with only occasional travel doesn't bug me as much.
I find it hard when I'm not getting quality sleep, we were all sick the last couple of weeks and it felt like the kids were tag teaming on me and so I ahd nights where I wasn't getting to sleep until 1 or 2 am with my 2yo waking up again once I got to sleep and a couple of nights I'd just take her into bed with me to get that small amount of sleep, then having my 5yo up between 5-6am. Of course now my body has adjusted to this funky sleep pattern and I can't get to sleep before midnight and I woke up at 5am this morning and DS has decided it's a good morning to sleep in.
I find if something is going to go wrong it's when DH is away. in one week we had the car stop and break down with battery issues then discovered the company I had called out initally to replace it a year prior had given me a competitors battery(I still don't know the story on that one but it too had happened when DH was away for work), alternator go creating the battery issue, a flat tire (with the correct part to remove the nuts for said tire not in the car) then had someone back into me in a car park.:geek: Oh and our racq had lapsed.:doh:
My advice, take one day at a time, don't worry too much about stuff happening or not enough huosework etc as you get back into a rhythm then you have another baby and that goes out the window. try to find a schedule that works for you, I try to have the kids in to bed around 7pm so I then get to unwind myself and have some adult conversation with Dh most nights and still get a decent amount of sleep.
I find very few people truly understand how strong your relationship needs to be when your DH/DP works away from home. How much you need to work at it. And just how friggen lonely it can be as a lot of people want to catch up when DH is home but can't be stuffed during the time he's away. This year we've had so much happen we've been shown just who is truly supportive of us and how great a few of our friends are but seriously our family sucks big time at support.:thumbsdown:
Then again I'm extra crazy as I want another baby and am going to home school next year.:laughing:
My husband works away (not for as long as your DH) and I have a 10 month old and 1 on the way. There will be 15 months between our kids.
My family are a 10 hour drive away (my mum does not fly) and DH's family (mother and brother) are an hour away but his mother has not contacted us for 3 months and we see his brother very little due to his work commitments.
I have a very bad back and have had heart problems in the past so I tire very easily, especially being pregnant.
How do I cope? I just do. I don't have a choice.
My back went on me not long ago and I could barely walk let along lift DD but I just had to make do. It was very distressing for me but I didn't have any choice....I had to deal with it.
I am clearly not much help to you. I don't have any tips.
My friends are all childless, very busy with their jobs and all live at least an hour away so unfotunately they aren't much help to me, either.
Thank you for your responses.
I haven't been on for a while due to DP being home, things are so hectic when he is here and the site had been down over the weekend.
I see most of you are in a similar situation and I guess you just have to deal with what you've got.
It would be a little easier if both of my youngest kids slept, Yes, even the 2 year old still wakes at night which in turn wakes the baby so I'm juggling the 2 of them at night. I do try to catch up on some sleep during the day but I like to spend some time with my older girls who I am finding need me more as they grow up (emotionally) than what they did when they were younger.
I do have my 2 year old in daycare 2 days a week and am working on putting our baby in next year as well so I can have at least one day to get things like grocery shopping done although I find that when I have those days to myself I just want to catch up on much needed sleep therefore don't get anything done.:(
Tayahnkai - As you said don't get sick!! (And also the kids at the same time). This year is the most I been sick in my life with having the two littlies and successfully breastfeeding my youngest for 12mths (1st one thats been successful for me) and DP going away to work. I am just exhausted!
I have expressed my concerns with not coping to some friends within the community and they have offered help with caring for the little ones. I am not used to asking for or accepting help rather I've always been the helper but a lady I met the other day put it into perspective she said "people wouldn't offer if they really didn't want to do it, so accept the help". That is what I am going to do, you feel a bit more capable when you know your not alone.:sunshine:
I guess the more he goes away the more i'll get used to it and the more I will develop skills to deal with it.:fingerscrossed:
Thank you ladies, if I discover any more ways to cope I let you know.:bee:
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