Being away from My Child for 8 months.

(181 Posts)
user1478250761 Fri 04-Nov-16 11:00:17


We have made a decision, Next year I will be away working in a remote location for 8 months.

Why? Simple the money. If I was offered double what I could earn in the UK I would turn it down.

My son turns 2 December 27th and being away from him for that amount of time (I am afraid we cannot skype, but phone calls are 'manageable' because of the location).

I am putting things in place, like recording videos and have a cuddly toy with a picture of me on it.

But To say this is easy is not the case, when I first accepted it, I cried...loads.

I then spoke to people in the navy who are away a lot and they have been great.

What I am asking is when I am away, while I accept he will be taller and talek more when I get back will i miss much else? Will this damage his development?

OP’s posts: |
Shemozzle Fri 04-Nov-16 11:05:10

Gosh. It's a third of his life and he may not remember you when you come back. Only as a concept. Can he not come with you with his father/mother (not sure which one you are).

Northumberlandlass Fri 04-Nov-16 11:07:36

When I was your DS age, my Dad was in Merchant Navy and away for 6-8 months, this was back in the day of ship to shore calls & real letters. My Dad still wrote letters and Mum would read them out.

My Mum took loads of photo's - my baby book is every single thing I did when he was away.

I don't remember him being away at that age at all! Obviously he went off for 6-8 months and came back for 3 months until I was 14, so that affected our relationship but it didn't damage my development.

I assume you have no concerns over who will be caring for him in that time.

Will this be a regular thing or is the 8 months a one off?

user1478250761 Fri 04-Nov-16 11:40:14


This is a one off for sure never again as well.

I will send as many letters as I can, but they make take a while and amke as many calls as I can.

My partner will look after him and my mum will move in for 5 days out of 7.

OP’s posts: |
ImperialBlether Fri 04-Nov-16 11:42:53

I'm sorry but I think this is a really bad decision. Your poor child will lose you at a point when they love you so much - can't you see that Skype just won't hack it?

ImperialBlether Fri 04-Nov-16 11:44:24

Just realised there isn't even Skype.

Sleepingbunnies Fri 04-Nov-16 11:46:19

I'm sorry. I thibk some things are more important that money. 8 months is a long time. What will you be doing? You cannot get a job doing anything else?

AnchorDownDeepBreath Fri 04-Nov-16 11:46:57

I think if the decision is made and accepted, I wouldn't collect more opinions on it. Other people might struggle with the concept, like you did initially, and you'll probably end up feeling worse than you did before.

Like you've said, there are plenty of careers that this happens in. He will be with his gran and his other parent, and you'll call and send letters. Will you be able to visit during the 8 months? If you've got internet, could you send gifts, or leave some for your partner to give him at specified times? Could you write some letters to leave at home? Leave some stories that will remind him of you? Can partner send you photos?

Prepare as well as you can, and remember that it'll pass. It feels like a long time but it will go, and if the money was too good to pass up, it's hopefully an amount that will benefit him too.

All the best.

Sleepingbunnies Fri 04-Nov-16 11:48:45

Your response was much better than mine anchor.. I really should thibk before I speak! blush

Artandco Fri 04-Nov-16 11:51:03

Can't you take him with you? Relocate with partner, your mum stay with you, get a nanny, put him in local nursery etc etc

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Fri 04-Nov-16 11:53:45

I agree with Anchor, you'll get a lot of responses questioning your decision rather than answering your question!

No, it will not harm your baby's development if he is left with your partner and your mum is there too, s/he will be loved and cared for and will continue to develop just fine. Although I can't say you won't miss much, unfortunately a lot changes when they're that age. It will be tough for you of course, but the baby will be fine flowers

Note3 Fri 04-Nov-16 11:54:32

My dad moved abroad when one of my children was small (around 1.5 yrs). She still remembered him when she saw him nearly a yr later so don't worry about your son forgetting you which was suggested higher up.

2014newme Fri 04-Nov-16 11:55:19

Don't go. Money isn't everything

GoofyTheHero Fri 04-Nov-16 11:56:05

No, I don't think it will harm his development. But yes, I think you will miss a lot. DD1 is 2.11 and has changed immeasurably in the past year.

Rockingaround Fri 04-Nov-16 11:56:18

Artandco has a good suggestion, can't you take him? I couldn't survive without my children, your DS will probably be totally ok y'know, he'll have his routine and daddy and nanny but how will you feel? I'm afraid I'd last not even a week and would fly home flowers

PoldarksBreeches Fri 04-Nov-16 11:56:20

Have you been his main carer for his whole life? If so then it would be a really bad thing to do. If your partner has been or has done a solid 50/50 then he will be ok.

bigfriendlygiant Fri 04-Nov-16 11:59:11

Money is fairly important in gaining the quality of life you want for your child.

I know lots of people who have had to work away for long periods. My grandad was also in the navy and they (grandparents, mum & aunty) had a very close relationship.

I live overseas and my nephews and nieces remember me. I think it's having photos up and my sister talking about me to them.

It'll be rough but it will pass!

user1478250761 Fri 04-Nov-16 11:59:42

This is why we have done it.

I live in an overspill of London, where, like loads of places property prices have gone higher and higher and out of our reach, my average wage I can earn is 21k per year, I will be paid 90k for these 8 months.

This will give me us a deposit and get us a house.

We are looking at the longer term.

they won'y ahve to worry about money bills etc as they will be covered.

It is not an easy decison It will be the hardest 8 months of my life but I hope you can understand why I am doing it.

OP’s posts: |
3luckystars Fri 04-Nov-16 11:59:47

Sorry I am also being unhelpful can I ask if you will you be able to come home if he gets sick?

Its a big move but if you have to do it then I suppose letters being read out and photos/ videos and maybe a box to open every month while you are away. I'm sorry you have to do this, it must be hard. Good luck x

PoldarksBreeches Fri 04-Nov-16 11:59:49

How do people know that it won't harm the child's development? Are you child psychologists? Experts in attachment and neurodevelopment in infants?
There is a significant risk that the child would be emotionally harmed by a prolonged separation from their main attachment figure at this age. Stupid to ignore that.

SprogletsMum Fri 04-Nov-16 12:01:39

I think it depends on the relationship you have with your child now.
If I left dd (almost 2) for 8 months it would seriously affect her, she wouldn't cope. If her dad left for 8 months she would be fine.

DearMrDilkington Fri 04-Nov-16 12:02:01

Ignore other posters op.
Nobody blinks an eye at a father being out of the country for large amount of times without their child so it should be no different for a mother.

If this is something you really have to do then do it. It's a one off and he won't remember you not being there. I promise he will rememmber who you are when you return as well.

PoldarksBreeches Fri 04-Nov-16 12:02:18

Could they come and visit you?

Finola1step Fri 04-Nov-16 12:02:30

There are a number of families who have one parent away for months at a time. Think Merchant Navy, Armed Forces, oil workers. It happens and it is workable. Whether you are the mother or father, it is workable. Lots of photos, videos, letters etc. There has to be an acceptance that while you are away, home life will change. Your dc will grow and develop.

When you return, you won't just slot in and pick up where you left off. Give yourself time to get used to being back. And give your family time to adjust at both ends.

Its 8 months, not 8 years.

RunningOutOfIdeas Fri 04-Nov-16 12:02:52

DH is away for significant periods every year. Not in a single 8 month chunk, but several sessions ranging from 1 to 4 months at a time.
DH finds it harder than the DC do. They developed just like any other baby. DH does feel he missed out on seeing major milestones.
You might find that, when you return, your DC will not be happy to be left in a room alone with you for a while. Just like settling in at a nursery, you might have to gradually build up the time your DC feels comfortable with you.
Now DC are older, they do tend to ask DH why he is going away, when he will be back etc. And tell him on the phone that they miss him. They look forward to his return (and the presents he brings!).

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