Parenting

Families are both a joy and a challenge at each stage of the life cycle. One- or two-parent families, single-sex and blended families, and families involving stepparents, grandparents, and in-laws are some of the contemporary families we see today.  Going to work after a baby, juggling the schedules of working parents with children and older family members, and dealing with illness or death are only a few of the many family situations that make finding a work/life balance difficult.

ISSUES FAMILIES FACE:

  • Finding balance in work life and personal life
  • Differing parenting styles and strategies
  • Differing priorities in work life and personal life
  • Time management and not having enough time
  • Varying degrees of involvement in family life

Some signs that you may need some extra help as a parent:

  • Arguments with your family
  • Feeling at odds with your child most of the time
  • Feeling at odds with your spouse or ex-spouse
  • Feeling overwhelmed and exhausted
  • Irritability, moodiness, anxiety, or social isolation
  • Neglecting previously enjoyable activities
  • Changes in appetite or eating habits
  • Confusion regarding effective and appropriate discipline

ISSUES CHILDREN FACE:

  • Limited quality time and interactions with immediate family
  • Lack of support during life transitions and milestones
  • Adjusting to changes in family structure
  • Coping with a family crisis, including illness or death
  • Exposure to substance abuse
  • Poor school performance

Ways that children show you they may need some extra support:

  • Negative attention seeking behaviors
  • Persistent testing of limits
  • Persistent moodiness
  • Temper tantrums
  • Developmental regression

If these or any other issues concern to you, please call the BMC EAP (for BMC employees) at 1-800-435-1986 or FSAO (for BU employees) at 617-353-5381 to schedule an appointment. Remember, both are free, confidential benefits for employees and their families.

Resources

BMC:
BMC Employee Assistance Program – free, confidential services for BMC employees
BMC Human Resources – free non-confidential services for BMC employees
BMC Breastfeeding Center – breastfeeding research and advocacy center

BU:
Faculty and Staff Assistance Office – free, confidential counseling and referral service for faculty, staff and their families, with locations on both Medical and Charles River campuses
BU Office of Family Resources – provides resources and services to support families of the BU community, including information, referrals, school vacation programs, and summer camps
Benefits for families – HR policies on changing your benefits when becoming a parent
Parental leave policies – BUMS policies for PhD and MD faculty

Off Campus:
Child Care Resource Center of Boston (CCRC) – a non-profit organization providing consultation and referral services for child care and adoption
Child Care Choices of Boston – support, resources, technical assistance and training to a diverse community of families, child care providers, employers, and businesses in the greater Boston area
Parents in a Pinch – offers a range of in-home backup childcare and eldercare services for working families
Jewish Family and Children’s Services – award-winning programs for the earliest parent-child relationships. Support for parents and children through personalized, comprehensive services
Child Witness to Violence Project – therapeutic, advocacy, and outreach project that focuses on the growing number of young children who are hidden victims of domestic and community violence and other trauma-related events

Online:

Department of Early Education & Care (EEC) – search engine for all EEC licensed childcare providers, both group care and family care, in Massachusetts
Care.com – post jobs and find local babysitters, nannies, home and pet care providers, and child and adult caregivers
SitterCity.com – resources for finding babysitters in your community
Parents Paper/Parenthood.com – resource for upcoming events, great deals, children’s activities and programs in the Boston area
iVillage Pregnancy and Parenting – internet information on pregnancy, parenting, and family life
Parenting.com – parenting information about crafts, cooking, cleaning, and movies
Positive Parenting – resources and information to help make parenting more rewarding, effective and fun
Parents.com – on-line version of Parents Magazine, which includes resources and information for parents of children from birth through adolescence
National Center for Fathering – provides tips, programs, training, and research for fathers
National Association of Mothers’ Centers – provides support, programs and resources for mothers
Administration for Children & Families – provides information for prospective and adoptive parents, for adopted people, and for pregnant women, birth mothers, fathers and relatives
Medline Plus: Information on Adoption – provides information on how to adopt, on coping with adoption, and on other adoption related issues
Adoption Resources – provides information and resources for birth parents and adoptive parents
CopeCareDeal – a mental health site for teens: resource for teens to learn about mental health disorders and ways to care, cope and deal with mental health issues for themselves and others