One of the harsh realities of working as an OFW is that a person will have to leave his or her family behind. This can be an overwhelming challenge not only for the OFW but most especially for the spouse who will single-handedly perform child-rearing duties.
Although undeniably a difficult scenario, many have been successful in raising their kids despite the absence of an OFW father or mother.
Here are some practical suggestions you should keep in mind:
1) Learn to prioritize.
Time management, of course, is one of the constant struggles. Just imagine how hard it is to juggle work deadlines, school activities and meetings, special occasions, and a ton of other important things. The key here is to prioritize.
Make a list of what you need to accomplish, rank them by order of importance, and then include them on your schedule. Cross them off one at a time as you complete them. That way, you wouldn’t miss crucial matters.
2) Spend time talking with and listening to your kids.
The temptation for busy parents is often this: ask kids what they want and then buy it. Needless to say, that is not merely the formula for having a harmonious relationship with your children. Sure, gifts make kids happy but that’s not all there is to it. More than presents, your sons and daughters also need this – your presence.
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Take time to have one-on-one conversations with them. Listen to their problems, whether it be big or small. Give relevant advice. Assure them of your love and support. Ask for honest feedback. Apologize when you make mistakes. Your kids will be more open if you do it this way.
Yes, you read that right: relax!
Just like a hardworking saw needs sharpening to be more efficient, so should you likewise spend some personal “Me” time. Watch a movie or read a good book. Play a musical instrument. Go out with your friends once in a while. Hit the gym or catch your favorite band while they’re in town. Paint a picture. Play sports. Get a massage.
The idea here is simple – do something you love or will relax your body and keep your mind off your other responsibilities, even for a brief moment.
If you have any other ideas about parenting tips for OFW spouses, share with us by leaving a comment below.