What do you do when your children are so heart broken when there Dads go back to work?

Caroline - posted on 11/04/2009 ( 15 moms have responded )

20

4

1

When my husband comes home from working out of town, a month at a time out, 6 days home my ten year old son gets so sad when its time for his Dad to go back. It breaks my heart to see him cry so much. I just want to cry with him but I put on a brave face and offer to buy him something or have sleep ovesr with his friends. He even has missed school because he so upset. Does this happen to anyone or is it just us? What would you do if it did? Are we causing life long physiological problems? Is buying his happyness wrong? My husband has always worked out of town. So its not like its a new thing. Will it ever stop?

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Simmoni - posted on 12/24/2009

7

6

1

Maybe it's just the age. It's probably harder at this age because he is actually starting to realize that his dad is gone so much. My 3 year old has a hard time with it the first few days his dad is gone,but usually snaps out of it after that. It's just part of this lifestyle, unfortunately. All you can do is love him, and do the best that you can. Good luck :)

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

15 Comments

View replies by

Nicole - posted on 04/26/2010

16

11

0

we have a daddy blanket LOL! Its my husbands snuggly and when he leaves my 2 1/2 year old sleeps with it constantly and carries it around....I didn't think he would have such a hard time with this...Going from Military to the Oilfield we figured oh well we have always spent time away from each other...But now that our son is getting of age to realize his daddy isn't around its SOO hard!

Coralee - posted on 04/09/2010

78

146

12

15 years in - all my kids know - first night away the kids and I have sticky cheese - a meal dad doesn't eat - it does get easier

Jessica - posted on 03/23/2010

11

23

2

My husband and kids and I all traveled the road together until last year when bouncing from school to school just became too much. He's been on the road for just over 13 months now and we send a lot of video txt messages back and forth. It makes the kids feel better being able to "see" him. And a friend of mine has a military husband who says skype video chat is the best thing ever, and they use it everyday. So we will be trying that soon also. But I think investing in phones that can record and send a full minute of video is a great idea. It works wonders at bedtime, when all they want is to see and hear their Dad say goodnight.

Donna - posted on 03/04/2010

3

0

0

My oldest two children 14 & 11 had a hard time when he started the Oil/Gas field life after having a normal job. I was pregnant with our third when he went to work for Schlumberger the day we came home from the hospital he had to leave for two weeks.
My 11yr said its like we are divorced and Daddy just stays at our house when he comes home from work just like the every other weekend thing divorced parents do. My now 3yr wouldn't go to him or kiss her daddy for a couple of days when he got home, then it woild be time to leave again and she just cried. Now we all have adjusted some what. The youngest will ask where you go daddy, work baby he says, she responds k see you next year, its not a year but must seem that way to her. This life is very hard on the whole family. What helped my oldest children was durning the summer he was able to take them on a job with him seperately, they thought it was amazing and cool. As for the youngest she is very attached to her mommy and we talk about daddy all the time and look at pictures while he is gone. When he gets home they have special time just her and her daddy.

Sabrina - posted on 12/15/2009

53

28

3

phoebe told her papa that she hated him the other day and hung up on him. i asked her why she would say that and she said that he lied. i asked what papa lied about and she told me that papa didnt come back. he called back to try to talk to her and she screamed at me and called me dumb and ran away. it broke my heart. i considered myself strong until that day. i broke down and started crying so hard. before he left she stood at the door screaming for him not to go and the world was falling apart all around her. when i came home from dropping him off. she told me she hated me, and i felt like she had a right to. my little phoebe is only 2 years old. its been getting so bad that papa is on the edge to quit.

Christi - posted on 12/07/2009

2

22

0

My hubby works 7 & 7 or 14& 14. When my oldest ones were younger they had their moments but they got use to the routine. when I had my last child the table turned, it was my hubby who cried and didn't want to go to work, lol... Every one eventually understood and we stay on a schedule routine. The day before going back work we have family day. The night before my hubby asks " You know what tomorrow is" and our youngest saids " work day" lol....

Shasta - posted on 12/06/2009

16

25

2

My son is 2.5 and is easily distracted from daddy leaving. We instant message and webcam everynight so its exciting for him to get on the computer to talk to daddy! He gets to tell him goodnight, say their prayers together and tell each other sweetdreams. Since we've started doing this, we don't have near as many crying spells at night. To help ease the pain when he first leaves, my husband will call him as soon as he's out of the driveway and talk to him. That calms him down alot and helps me! I don't buy him gifts for distraction, that could get expensive, but after he's off the phone with daddy, we do his favorite activity, go to the barn!!

Julie - posted on 12/05/2009

7

17

0

It's always rough. When my husband had to be gone for days at a time when he was a rig manager, it was rough on our daughter because she is such a daddies girl. Fortunately, he had internet access and she could e-mail him on myspace and call him every night. Being able to hear his voice really helped her. If it is at all possible, I would suggest setting up a time for them to instant message or call each other everyday. Instead of purchasing toys or something of that nature, I would suggest one on one time like a movie nite where he can pick out a video to rent, and help you make popcorn or coke floats and turn off the phone and just give him your full attention. And repeat the process with dad when he gets home.

Kim - posted on 11/16/2009

4

21

0

My husband is away sporadically and I hate that he has to leave at the drop of a hat.... my son is equally upset and has woken up many times in the night while daddy is away crying for him. He also cries for him when I tell him no or get angry at him for things.... so I think maybe buying him something could be spoiling him. Your kid is 10 and has been through this for a while. Mind you my kid is only 2.5 but he generally accepts my response that "daddy is working" and won't be home for a while. I will distract my kid with playing a game or going to the park or something else that he enjoys doing without breaking the bank. Maybe try doing something with him that he enjoys doing like playing a sport or a boardgame... create some mommy and kid time so that he realizes that mommy can be pretty fun too and daddy isn't the only one to play fight or toss the ball around. Unfortunately for us Oilfield wives... we have to be mommy and daddy to fill in that emptiness for our kids when they are away. Hope this helps!

Amy - posted on 11/15/2009

14

17

0

It does not get any easier.. My hubby has been working offshore for all of our marriage (11 years). We have a 9 year old boy and a 5 year old boy.. The 9 year old has gotten use to daddy leaving, the 5 year old cries everytime my hubby leaves.. I just hold him while he cries, I cry with him sometimes, lol... It normally hits him when it is bedtime.. He loves having moma and daddy tuck him in to bed.. But my boys love having there father home.. It is just something my sons have to adjust to it has been our life all our lives.. I wish you luck with it all..

Loret - posted on 11/10/2009

3

27

0

I know its not easy, I have 2 boys, 7 years and 5 years old, my hubby has been doing this for last 5 years but you need to be strong and just let Dad communicate with your son everyday and stop feeling guilty, kids know u better than you know yourself. He will be fine , stop buying his happiness - its not a good thing , keep to routine and remind him always dad loves him and dad must bring his part and speak to him everyday and although he is not at home , make him part of everything. It can get better. good luck

Karagh - posted on 11/09/2009

4

3

0

My hubs is a rig pig, but mine doesn't have a set time in/out. The oldest just accepted as part of life. The younger one she still gets bummed out. She's 11 and has already figured out when the call comes from his boss she knows what it means b4 he's even off the phone. He spoils her rotten when he comes home and that sometimes leads to bratty "I WANT" moments when he goes. She has learned that when mama says no..... she means it, but she will even call her pops on her cel when she wants him to convince me to buy something. The crying may stop if you stop trying to buy him off. He may not be as upset as you think he is. He may well be "wangling" (our word fer taking advantage of) you as he has learned that when Dad goes all he has to do is cry to get what ever he wants. I don't think it's going to scar him for life. My oldest is almost done school and has a part time job. The youngest is heavily involved in track and field. I don't think buying happiness is wrong but it might lead to temper tantrums that don't let up until he is placated with "STUFF". I usually rent movies and make their favorite supper to distract them. We tend not to discuss when Dad's coming home. The kids are used to the saying "The only thing for sure..... is that nothing is for sure" because we never know when that will be. If I say Friday.... he may not be back and that is more disappointing than just not knowing.... usually he just pops in the door to great excitement. I have been a rig wife for over 17 yrs the 2 girls have known nothing else, however Xmas and B-days are still emotional if he's not home. Good Luck

Sarah - posted on 11/09/2009

240

42

21

I have only been in this business for a few years, but let me tell ya its hard. It never seems to get easier. I have a 5 year old boy and an almost 2 year old. My daughter has always known her dad to be gone and at work, but my son knows what its like for daddy to have a "regular" job. My son has started acting out in public and at home horribly, just being flat out mean. My husband took a job where he's gone for 2 weeks in PA straight then supposed to be home working. When he isn't working in PA he's in oklahoma city working and is staying over night there, so its like he is literally never home. We saw him for 2 days and that is really kinda stretching it. My daughter wakes up looking for her daddy and comes into bed and says no daddy mommy no daddy! That's heartbreaking. I absolutely tried everything with my kids..between the kids being torn up and all out of sorts to acting bad in public and being mean, nothing seemed to work. I thought at first it was something that I was or wasn't doing and then thought maybe it was just there age and it was a phase. Well I fell and jammed my hip and my husband had to stay home from work(he was supposed to go to oklahoma city for 5 days) and the kids I swear never got in trouble. Their behavior completely changed. I really feel like the time they get with their dad is valuable and really made a difference in how they acted...My husband has since quit his job and has found one where he's not gone so much. It really has changed everyone for the better. Good luck

Autumn - posted on 11/09/2009

47

12

9

Wow that is rough.My kids have never reacted that severly.I know that has to be rough but He should not still be reacting this way. He must know that his dad loves him and will be returning if it has been this way his whole life. Yes buying his happiness is bad, you are then condoning his behavior and it will only continue. If you and your husband do not already do this; I would suggest that his dad call or comunicate with him every day if possible, so they can stay involved with what is going on with each other. Does your husband have a computer available at work? Does he and your son each have their own email addresses and/or facebooks? These are great ways for them to stay in contact. I have a brother-in-law in the Navy and he is sometimes gone for 3 to 6 months at a time, without phone service. He uses the chat option on his facebook to chat with not only his four children individually ( as long as they have a connection), but also with his wife. If these dont seem to work maybe your son should seek therapy. Iam not a fan of therapy but if one of my children reacted this way I would look into it. Just for the fact that there may be something bothering him that he may not realize or feel comfortable talking to you about. I hope everything works out for you. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms