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  • Parents unhappy about me not coming home for Christmas

    So I will be working both Christmas and New Years this year and have no issue with it (I'm rather looking forward to it to be honest) but my parents, and to a larger degree, my mother, are unhappy and don't understand why "I can't just ask off/use personal days". I've tried the whole "I'm the new guy it's my responsibility to work" and "crime doesn't take a personal day" approach but they still are being petty and making me feel guilty about having to work. "You'll have this job forever, your family misses you etc", they'll say. I live 6 hours away from my parents and siblings and haven't seen them since May when I got hired.

    What's even more frustrating is that my uncle is a 20+ year patrolman and my family has gotten quite used to not seeing him much.

    I'm out of strategies; they have always been relatively understanding about distance but now that I'm in my career (which all they ever wanted from me was to have a career I enjoy) they keep struggling to understand why I can't just hop in my car and drive home as often anymore. I love my family very much but I'm finding it hard to make them understand why this is how it is.

  • #2
    With an uncle in the LE community you’d think she would understand,....oh well.

    Most don’t understand the way LEO shifts work,....when you’re not there, the
    shift is short.

    Planned days off affect the shift. Sick days / unplanned absences REALLY hurt the shift.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Saluki89 View Post
      So I will be working both Christmas and New Years this year and have no issue with it (I'm rather looking forward to it to be honest) but my parents, and to a larger degree, my mother, are unhappy and don't understand why "I can't just ask off/use personal days". I've tried the whole "I'm the new guy it's my responsibility to work" and "crime doesn't take a personal day" approach but they still are being petty and making me feel guilty about having to work. "You'll have this job forever, your family misses you etc", they'll say. I live 6 hours away from my parents and siblings and haven't seen them since May when I got hired.

      What's even more frustrating is that my uncle is a 20+ year patrolman and my family has gotten quite used to not seeing him much.

      I'm out of strategies; they have always been relatively understanding about distance but now that I'm in my career (which all they ever wanted from me was to have a career I enjoy) they keep struggling to understand why I can't just hop in my car and drive home as often anymore. I love my family very much but I'm finding it hard to make them understand why this is how it is.
      Tell Mom it is what it is..................................My mother got use to having Christmas in January or February (depending on the weather on my days off) I lived over 4 hours away from my entire family for 30 yrs.

      .You can explain it over and over but it is up to your family to understand.....................You feeling guilty about the facts of life is on you .....................
      Last edited by Iowa #1603; 12-23-2019, 09:41 AM.
      Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

      My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

      Comment


      • #4
        My first law enforcement jobs took me hundreds of miles from home as well. I never worked a single Christmas in my 33 year career. An old Captain taught me how to pull it off and stay within the system. Can't save you this year but you can use it in the future.

        Few people if any schedule vacation time at Christmas. Vacation is treated differently than personal time off. When the vacation sign up schedule comes around, sign up for Christmas week off. That will give you time to travel home, spend a couple days with family, drive back and then be rested when you return to work.
        Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

        Comment


        • Saluki89
          Saluki89 commented
          Editing a comment
          I like it. I'll keep this in mind

      • #5
        L-1, it's just the opposite at my department. Lots of folks take vacation the month around Christmas in order to have Eve and Day off. Our senior guys are usually the ones with Christmas off because it's so popular and we go by seniority regarding vacations.
        Last edited by LA Copper; 12-23-2019, 10:53 AM.

        Comment


        • #6
          Originally posted by LA Copper View Post
          L-1, it's just the opposite at my department. Lots of folks take off the month around Christmas in order to have Eve and Day off. Our senior guys are usually the ones with Christmas off because it's so popular and we go by seniority regarding vacations.
          That was my agency also

          I didn't have enough seniority to get Christmas week off until I had 22 yrs OTJ
          Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

          My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

          Comment


          • #7
            Your response should be something similar to:

            Its my job. I don’t have seniority yet. It’s MY life, not yours. I’m a grownup. I’m WORKING, at MY job. That’s how life IS.

            You know, something that lets mommy know that you are an adult and can hopefully make decisions for yourself.

            The apron strings should have been cut YEARS ago and your boundaries established.
            Now go home and get your shine box!

            Comment


            • #8
              I'll always be mommies goodest boy.

              She's just emotional. I guess they just need time to adjust.

              Comment


              • Zeitgeist1
                Zeitgeist1 commented
                Editing a comment
                If she's just lost a parent, she's probably reassessing her whole world. Be extra patient with her.

            • #9
              Originally posted by Saluki89 View Post
              I'll always be mommies goodest boy.

              She's just emotional. I guess they just need time to adjust.
              This tugged at the 'ole heart strings' a bit. I lost my Mom a little over a year ago.

              I understand. It's hard. Unfortunately that's one of the sacrifices we make in pursuing this career. This may be something she's just not going to 'get.'

              Since your Uncle is a LEO she's obviously aware of the schedule. You're 6 hours away and haven't seen them since May, I'd say a visit in the near future is in order.
              Merry Christmas.
              Last edited by Zeitgeist1; 12-23-2019, 02:22 PM.

              Comment


              • Saluki89
                Saluki89 commented
                Editing a comment
                I'm sorry to hear that. My mother just had to bury our grandfather last year and lately she has been more pushy about seeing me. Maybe that has something to do with it. Merry Christmas as well.

            • #10
              If maintaining family relations is important to you, try being more proactive in your holiday planning: [In September] "Mom, I'm really sorry, but I have to work Xmas and there's no way for me to get out of it. But I really want to see you guys and I wanted to see if I could come by for a few days just before/just after the holiday. I have a few off around [date]; could we make that work?" Show them it's important to you, and your willingness to go out of your way to make a visit happen (within the parameters of your job obligations), and they may ease up a bit on the guilt-tripping.

              If maintaining family relations isn't important to you, tell them to pound sand, and they can call back when they're ready to treat you like the adult (with adult responsibilities) that you are.

              Take that, Dear Abby.

              Comment


              • #11
                Over 4 years active duty Army plus 3 years active reserve service, and 24 years as a cop. I worked practically every Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year, and every other holiday, along with most weekends. My birthday happens to be Veterans Day (and I am an honorably discharged combat veteran), a federal holiday that many people take for granted as a day off, but I worked almost all of those as well.

                Following early retirement as a police chief I ran a small business. The business became rather successful, requiring me to work days, nights, weekends, holidays, and just about every other day of the year. Once went 9 years without a day off, although all of my employees got their holidays and vacations (usually with me filling in).

                People who are accustomed to a regular work schedule (8AM to 5PM, Monday thru Friday, weekends and holidays off, couple weeks vacation every year) take such things for granted and expect everyone else to do the same. Those same folks end up retiring with minimal resources, relying on pension and benefit payments that others administer, and many die in nursing homes while their life savings and home equities are sucked away to cover their expenses.

                Personally, I have two pension funds, I also have 3 IRA accounts, I have 2 financial advisors managing 9 investment accounts, all totaling over 1.5 million, and I live debt-free with more than enough to help my children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren along the way in life. I have also published a couple of books and several professional articles and earned an honorary master's degree along the way.

                Not bad for a kid who had to quit school to work and pay my mother's rent before I was drafted, picked up a GED in the Army and a couple of years of community college credits. Yeah, I had to work some holidays, weekends, and a whole lot of night shifts, but most of the guys I worked along side of are now sucking wind in retirement while I continue doing what I want to do anytime I want to do it.

                Life is what we make of it, and it is every bit as good as we allow it to be. Make sure Mom knows that you love her and miss her every day (especially on holidays), but you have to honor your commitments first.

                Comment


                • #12
                  I worked holidays including Christmas, New Year's day, 4th of July, Easter and especially mother's day starting at 13 years old so by the time I had to do that stuff as an adult it was never a problem for me. My mom was self employed so understood having to twork to get paid. I agree with Orangebottle. Be more proactive. Also being 6 hours away from your parents is just harder than if you were 1-2 hours. Any consideration for them to move closer to you or you to them?

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Originally posted by Saluki89 View Post
                    So I will be working both Christmas and New Years this year and have no issue with it (I'm rather looking forward to it to be honest) but my parents, and to a larger degree, my mother, are unhappy and don't understand why "I can't just ask off/use personal days". I've tried the whole "I'm the new guy it's my responsibility to work" and "crime doesn't take a personal day" approach but they still are being petty and making me feel guilty about having to work. "You'll have this job forever, your family misses you etc", they'll say. I live 6 hours away from my parents and siblings and haven't seen them since May when I got hired.

                    What's even more frustrating is that my uncle is a 20+ year patrolman and my family has gotten quite used to not seeing him much.

                    I'm out of strategies; they have always been relatively understanding about distance but now that I'm in my career (which all they ever wanted from me was to have a career I enjoy) they keep struggling to understand why I can't just hop in my car and drive home as often anymore. I love my family very much but I'm finding it hard to make them understand why this is how it is.
                    OK, so Christmas is over and done with. How did it go? What was the fallout? Did the earth stop spinning and grind to a halt? Did your family disown you? Was there ripping and tearing of cloth? (Oops, never mind - wrong religion, wrong holiday.)

                    Inquiring minds want to know.
                    Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Originally posted by L-1 View Post

                      OK, so Christmas is over and done with. How did it go? What was the fallout? Did the earth stop spinning and grind to a halt? Did your family disown you? Was there ripping and tearing of cloth? (Oops, never mind - wrong religion, wrong holiday.)

                      Inquiring minds want to know.
                      lol we videochatted for a bit from my squad car. It's just a transition for them as they're used to seeing me pretty regularly despite our distance.

                      Comment


                      • #15
                        Become an SRO. Our contract with the school district requires SROs to schedule time off when school is out. Yours is probably similar.

                        SRO gets priority for time off during holidays because he CANT take time off any other time.
                        "I am a Soldier. I fight where I'm told and I win where I fight." -- GEN George S. Patton, Jr.

                        "With a brother on my left and a sister on my right, we face…. We face what no one should face. We face, so no one else would face. We are in the face of Death." -- Holli Peet

                        Comment

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