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Away But Not Apart: How to Be a Good Dad Despite Separations

It doesn't sound like you'll have that. Things that were helpful included keeping in touch via instant messaging, keeping spares of various things in both places to ease the transition and finding ways to lengthen the weekend as long as possible. It's not even about moaning all the time, but some days one hour of mutual moaning helps me feel better and get ready to think positively and go forward. Talk it out ahead of time. Pin It on Pinterest. But you should be crystal clear both to your wife and yourself about exactly how much time you will be at home, and how much energy you are likely to have left over to participate in the life of the house. You could do a lot less than this, I would suggest looking at every other week at the least.

Being a dad is a wonderfully rewarding privilege. Most dads love to tell their buddies how awesome their kids are and how proud they are of them. The role of father is a priority in their lives, but what if Dad has to work away from home a lot? What if he wants to be there day in and day out for his wife and children, but due to work obligations he can’t?

Military Wife

We took turns flying across the country to see each other, every week or every other week. It sucked so massively hard that words do not begin to describe how awful it was, and we had no children. That relationship had other problems, but I would not ever do that again. Especially with children in the equation, no, just no.

Your kids in high school can adjust to a new high school. It's not ideal but it is not the end of the world. Your kid in college does not need you to be close by. If selling the house is the problem, could you rent it? Then you can rent a place in your new location, and if things don't work out, there is a fallback position. If you personally are unwilling to move, that's understandable, but you might want to consider how reasonable that position is. My impression is that what makes it bearable is a the money b strong support systems for the mom if she's doing solo parenting c long periods where the father is back home with the family and not working so he can get reinvolved with school, sports, church, social life, etc.

As a consultant, I flew out Mondays, back most Thursdays, company paid for travel, no issues at all in the marriage because we saw each other every weekend. Company was paying for my housing at the client as well so no money issues. Later, I was offered a job in a new place and husband couldn't move for a year. I asked to work a modified schedule during interviews so I could take off every other Friday without using vacation and they were ok with it It was more expensive than expected.

We budgeted for the two households but we each spent more money on going out than expected to be social and entertained apart. We occasionally needed to pay for convenience- like doggy day care one day a week so I could catch up on missed sleep, work a long day, etc. Incidental costs from traveling snuck up on us and different times of the year were far more expensive Not to mention, the money for marriage counseling see below. Why it was so awful outside of money: Though we trusted each other completely, we both got depressed, exhausted, and wondered if our marriage was worth it.

It was hard to enjoy each other's friends when we did see each other- often only once a month - because we didn't get the inside jokes. We had unrealistic expectations about how to instantly be intimate with each other again in all aspects of the word "intimate".

We both wanted to arrive at the other's place and find it clean and feel homey which added pressure to prep things mid-week while juggling life stuff. Also, when we got together, we often had to deal with mundane stuff - taxes, planning family trips, etc. And there were no "fun" vacations - only visiting each other and family trips.

It was the worst period of our marriage and 8 months into this arrangement, we were in counseling because we were forming our own lives in different places and growing apart and resentful. When we got back together, things improved immediately but we would have divorced if it hadn't been for just a year.

I'd never do it again. I'd never recommend anyone else do it. If you can budget for frequent traveling, try it. If it doesn't work, he could quit or you could rent your house.

It was a horror for a year and I couldn't imagine three years. I've seen a lot of marriages break up over this. My father was USAF and then a defense contractor. I went to 4 schools over my high school years.

They may mope and whine while they do it, but they'll get over it. Military families go through this sort of thing a lot. However, it is part of the deal going in, and not a drastic change 20 years into a relationship. Also, there is usually a solid support structure in place for the spouse, with lots of people around who have gone through the same thing. It doesn't sound like you'll have that. If your husband's vocation is in demand in the South I would think he could negotiate a decent relocation package.

It's not completely unusual for the new company to pick up your selling costs on the house. So you'll make a little money and you can rent at the new locale for a year to make sure you are going to stay before investing in real estate again.

We did it for 3 years and survived intact. The distance was much much shorter though and allowed for every weekend visits without a flight. For our family, it was my husband who was the one living apart, who suffered the most. With 2 young kids and a full time job, i was busy all the time and our lives could continue on with day to day activities just like they always had. We missed him but had some normalcy. He did not and took it personally that we didn't struggle more without him.

Also, I think we felt pressure to make the time we had together special, which is good and bad. Sometimes we swept over problems because we didn't want to spend the small amount of time we had fighting. It did make us appreciate a normal in the same house family life though. One option you might not have thought of-do you have relatives or family friends whom your HS kids could stay with while they finish up?

My thought is that if I had a high school freshman I wouldn't hesitate to move. I'd stay for a senior. In between would be negotiable. Alia of the Bunnies at 1: I think the kids will be OK if you move.

They'll be unhappy, but they'll deal. I think your bigger problem is going to be deciding what to do with the house, but talk to a real estate agent or several and you might be pleasantly surprised.

The market is coming back. I think it really matters how reliable this recruiter's advice is. If there is any other alternative, then maybe not. Perhaps post an anonymous question with the details of his career path and field and see if anyone else can find other alternatives nearer you? I did this for two school years Sept - June between Portland and California. The teenager was her son -- I entered his life when he was 15 -- which is a different situation I think than if you have been in your kids lives from the start.

Even though the flight time was only 2 hrs, there was the TSA delays and then the driving to and from the airport which was 2 hrs. We did break up 3 years later but I think that was for other reasons. I cannot imagine trying to keep a full time job and do coast-to-coast travel every weekend.

I can maybe see doing this if you are in the SE, but not in the SW -- especially if you are not located at an airline's hub. BTW, consulting isn't a perfect comparison. Consultants have some advantages that your husband will not have: Your husband will likely be out of pocket.

Generally, you're not the only consultant at a client site. You have people with whom you go out to dinner most nights or commiserate about missing home. Your husband will not have a similar network.

If you have demands at home, you can usually work something out to get home. Also, about that remote location.

Do you mean far from an airport? When I was in consulting nearly everyone lived close to a big airport. Late flights, Winter roads, connecting flights What you're proposing is hard, but it's not completely horrible. I still travel for work, but usually only 1 or 2 days a week. These days, I try very hard to never be gone longer than 2 consecutive nights. If the flight is less than 90 minutes, I usually go out and back on the same day. I actually like having quiet time on a plane to do some thinking.

You want to go into this with open eyes and alternatives. If it doesn't work out would you then sell the house? My dad did this for a few years when my parents were married. He is now happily married to the lady who ran the guest house he stayed in while working. This is an extreme example and my parents' marriage was in a terrible state to start with but don't underestimate how tough this will be for the whole family. You as effectively a single parent, your husband as someone who never stays anywhere for more than four nights, is constantly living out of a bag and may feel isolated from his family and have to work much harder to stay involved with the kids lives and the kids who will be seeing much less of their father and also exposed consciously or not to the stresses all this puts on you, your husband and the family life.

My husband and I did several variations on long distance before we got married. Things that were helpful included keeping in touch via instant messaging, keeping spares of various things in both places to ease the transition and finding ways to lengthen the weekend as long as possible.

We were fortunate that neither of us was jealous and both fairly independent, but even so there are still times when it sucks to be functionally single if everyone else is part of a couple. I very much doubt an employer would be willing to pay for trips back home: It's a rare employer who would choose to pay for those home trips in addition to a competitive salary; insisting they pay would probably mean they hire someone else The best plan is to simply move the family to the job and rent out your Connecticut house.

It's not going to kill your high schoolers to change schools I was a Navy brat, and if I recall correctly, I went to 16? I'm assuming your collage student lives in the dorms, so there's no need to worry about that kid, because they've already grown up and moved out.

Thanks everyone for your answers. Conduct yourself with integrity. Your self-discipline and character will make a difference in you life in many ways, and will spill over to your kids.

You will bless your kids by maintaining a high reputation and a virtuous life. Please share some of yours below or at our Facebook page. Carey Casey is the CEO of the National Center for Fathering, a nonprofit organization dedicated to changing the culture of fathering in America by enlisting 6.

NCF believes that every child needs a dad they can count on, and uses its resources to inspire and equip men to be the involved fathers, grandfathers and father figures their children need. Subscribe to his weekly email tip by clicking here: I want tips on how to be a great dad who loves, coaches, mentors, and inspires my children.

Custom website design by Jeff Roberts Web Design. Away But Not Apart: Can you squeeze in a late meeting and then fly home late instead of waiting another day? Also, do a few special one-on-one things with each of your kids. Put some planning into your re-entry back home. The first few minutes after you walk in the house can make a big difference.

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May 31,  · His job keeps him on the road -- you're home with the kids. Here's how to Beth Torroll. I travel a lot for work; I’m away from home much more than I would like to be, although my family knows that I have a calling on my life. Still, I have to accept the fact that as a road warrior dad, my absence can add to today’s crisis of fatherlessness. Challenges of Families with a Parent Working Away from Home Base AIPC June 5, This article is part of a special series focusing on common challenges faced by Australian families.