Spending time with family is important. We often get so wrapped up in the importance of money or other things in life that we sometimes forget about the most important little things.
Most importantly, it affects children when they grow up more than the parents. Children notice it when their parents do not spend time with them or they are simply too busy due to work.
They might not say much or complain as they do not want to cause problems, if they notice you are stressed out due to work or some other issue. But this does not mean the children are happy with your absence or failure to spend time with them.
While you may argue that you do not have enough time to spend with your family, because of being constantly busy, eventually this will cost you a lot. The more you spend less time with your children, the more they become “strangers” to you as there is no bond.
A 1997 study of more than 12,000 American teenagers found that youths who have close relationships with their parents are less likely to suffer from emotional stress, to have suicidal thoughts, to engage in violence, or to use addictive substances.
And one of the researchers involved in the extensive study said: “You can’t get a sense of connectedness to kids unless you are there for them.” Spending time with your children and communicating with them does matter.
The Communication Gap
Especially vulnerable to communication breakdown are families in which a parent lives away from home on a distant job assignment.
Of course, the communication gap is not limited to families with a parent living away from home. Some parents, though living at home, go to work before their children wake up and come home after they have gone to bed.
To compensate for the resulting lack of contact, certain parents spend time with the family on weekends and holidays. They talk about spending “quality” time with their children.
Yet, is the lack in quantity offset by quality? Researcher Laurence Steinberg answers: “In general, kids who spend more time with their parents do better than kids that spend less time.
It seems to be very difficult to make up for that lack of time. The idea of quality time has been oversold.”
For Sheila, a banker by profession who has been married for the last five years, spending time with her family is a priority.
“ I leave home early every morning before my kids get out of bed .Its challenging but I try to make sure my weekends are devoted to the family . This helps us to keep close as a family,” she says.
However for Annet a house wife who husband comes home from work at mid night or 11 pm, sparing only weekends for the family is not sufficient.
Although her husband spends time with his family on the weekends, Annet says: “Being at home on Saturdays and Sundays cannot fill the gap of not being with the family for the rest of the week. . . . Can you skip all meals on weekdays and eat all the meals for the week on Saturdays and Sundays?”
Maintaining good communication in the family is easier said than done.
The demands of making a living and providing for the family do not make it easy for a father or a working mother to spend time with the family.
Many whose circumstances require them to be away from home communicate regularly by making telephone calls or writing letters. But whether together at home or not, conscientious effort is needed to maintain good family communication.
Money does not always make people happy. Sometimes you need to ask yourself would you rather have less stress in your household than work.
It is possible to spend time with your family and also make money, all you have to do is to have to do is to budget your time.