Parenting is hard. There, we’ve said it. There are no hard and fast rules to being a perfect parent. There are lots of parenting books on the market, and they all say different things. That should be enough to let you know that there is no one great way to be an amazing parent.
Working away from home or being deployed for months at a time can take its toll. It can be hard on your kids not having a parent that is there 24/7. Of course, you are working, and you are providing for your family. That is commendable. Children also need emotional support as well as financial assistance.
Here are some useful tips that you can use when you are parenting from a distance.
Check in Regularly
Your kids may feel the stresses and strains of you being away, but one way to counteract this is by communicating with them regularly. It’s important to check in with with them regularly, but it’s important to note that a simple text, Snapchat, or email can do the trick. Anything to show them that you’re thinking about them, love them, and care is enough in a child’s mind.
Make Telephone Dates with Your Kids
While you may make time for your spouse while you are away, you also need to think about your children, too. Make a telephone date with your children and aim to talk to solely them for that time. Of course, the rest of the family may want to speak with you, but spending some quality telephone time with your children is the best way to remain connected. What’s more, it shows that you value their company and are committed not only to their other parent, but also to them.
Communicate With Letters
Letters are a very personal way of keeping in contact. Write about your day, ask about theirs, and commend their achievements. Take the opportunity to gossip about things that are going on back home. Your kids will love the excitement of opening a letter. Of course, if they have been badly behaved, reprimand them in the letter too. You still need to have their respect and be a good parent, even while you are away from home.
Get on Social Media
If your kids are teenagers, they will probably be on Facebook and Twitter. You may not be, and you may have some personal feelings about social media. But, for the sake of remaining in contact with your kids, get on social media. You can also look at what they are up to and what their plans are. It’s a good way of keeping up-to-date with the good and the bad.
Keep in the Loop with the Other Parent
Make time to talk to the other parent about the kids. Get a rundown of their behavior and what they have been doing at school. Kids have a habit of omitting the facts when they have been misbehaving. Make sure that you are aware of their behavior and what they have been doing. Reprimand them where necessary. Parenting comes with good and bad aspects, just because you are parenting from a distance doesn’t mean that you have to forgo your principles. They will respect you for it in the end.