Have you heard of weekend parents?

Singapore
December 8, 2009 12:56am CST
Over here, there is a term "weekend parents". It refers to parents, usually of young children, who only see their kids on weekends. On weekdays, while the parents work, the child is in the care of a nanny, or a grandparent. sometimes this is because the parents live quite far from the caregiver, or they do not own a car to ferry the child to and fro daily. it could also be because the parents work long hours on weekdays and wouldn't see much of the child anyway after office hours. I personally think it's quite sad for the child, not to be personally cared for by his or her parents. What do you think of this phenomenon? Do you think it's inevitable, a product of circumstances, or that the parents have no excuse for not caring for their own child?
2 people like this
17 responses
@kun2349 (23475)
• Singapore
9 Dec 09
YEah, i dun think it's fair for the hid.. IMagine them seeing the parents for only once or twice per week?? Will there be any bonds between them?? As the kid grow older, they might be more sensible, but the relationship between parents and child wont be as close.. It's not really healthy in a way.. PLus, it's the parents responsibility to take care of the child, no matter how tiring and inconvenient it can be..
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
yup, I have a friend whose parents only 'took her back' when she was in primary one, and she really feels alienated from them.
1 person likes this
@kun2349 (23475)
• Singapore
16 Dec 09
SHe's such a poor thing!! I wonder, how did she get by those times with her parents after she was being fetched back??
• Philippines
9 Dec 09
Hi. Weekend parents is not common here in the Philippines. But there are a lot of children here left at the care of relatives because their parents chose to work abroad. Like you, I really feel sad for the kids. No matter how nice and responsible the relatives are, it's still different to grow up at the care and guidance of your own parents.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
yes i totally understand that working abroad in jobs where you cannot bring your children is a major phenomenon. i feel so sorry for both the parents and the kids, cos many times the parents really have no other way of providing for their families.
• United States
9 Dec 09
Wow! That is very sad, there is no excuse for a parent not taking care of their own child. You made the child with your significant other it's your responsibility and nobody else. I understand if parents want to go out for a night to dinner and a movie or something along those lines but to only see your child/children on the weekends? That is insane, this is a first that I've ever heard of weekend parents and I already hate the idea of it. I'm sure it only confuses the child and will scar them through out life. If I had a child or children I would be taking care of my own in my own home and spending time with them each and every day, no matter what my work schedule may be. You wanted the child, you can make time. Unbelievable.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
Yes my friend whose parents only 'took her back' from her grandparents at the age of 7 still holds it against them. and her experience has made her decide to quit her job and be a full time stay at home mum.
@zahidz (311)
9 Dec 09
well its really sad that children just cannot get the attention of parents and what they got time from parents is not enough i think.i think our children has right on us and we should give them time as much as we can and with them in one house so may they can grow and become a better parents ahead.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
glad you feel this way.
• Hong Kong
9 Dec 09
Hi squaretile, It happens in Hong Kong, too. However, we do not name those parents as 'weekend parents'. I agree with you. I feel pity with the small or young children. Those parents who choose this way of living for themselves and their children are mostly deal to not trusting of domestic helpers or cannot afford one at home. As a result, children would stay at granny's or relative's home during week days. Of course, no one can replace the parents when from the children's point of view. However, in reality, parents need to make a living as it is not easy to run a family here in Hong Kong. The government here does not help much. So, sometimes it is really inevitable. I do know some of the parents who do not like to take care of their children but they think that it should be a child or two in a family, so they move their children to the granny's home. They even do not see their children in every weekend, as they want to meet their friends and have fun during holidays. Then, the child would be with grandma and grandpa all the time. In these cases, the children usually are not living happily, and are usually spoiled by the elderly or uncles and aunts. It is their parents' irresponsibities. The children have no mood on studying,too. These parents harm their children. It is always good to have children taken care by their parents. The love between each other and sharing with each each other is important in this bonding. Have a nice day! agonyaunt69 (12:06pm 9 Dec 2009, Hong Kong time)
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
for the second type of parent you were mentioning, i really wonder why they have children. or perhaps they were not prepared, and then totally regretted it. not even seeing them on weekends means they might as well have been fostered out or adopted by their caregivers permanently!
• China
9 Dec 09
If parents have to leave their children to be taken care of by others because they cannot really spare time themselves, then there's no fault in them. They do that not because they don't love their children, but because there is no other alternatives. Whereas, if they do it purposely, they can't be forgiven. All children want to live together with their deal folks, and if they can't, they'll most probably suffer some mental pressure afterwards.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
i think children will feel unloved.
@gossipzz (500)
• Canada
9 Dec 09
Yes it is quite sad,however we do live in a society where the parents have to work to care for the children. Not everyone can work from home,or have same schedule as kids school hours. If everyone stays home with kids they will all go hungry unless they will grow their own food. I tried to stay home for the first 2 years of my children lives then I need to let them go and be indipendant. Happy lotting.
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
well I wasn't referring to going out to work... lots of parents do but still take care of their own child once they are off work.
@gx7001lm (63)
• Malaysia
9 Dec 09
i think its because of unavoidable circumstances. a normal parent would want to see their child everyday. they want to see them grow up that is why they see them during the weekend when they are free. these parents thought giving their child a better quality of life is showing love to them. Some child may feel but some don't. so it more sort of personal thing. some parents send their child to their grandparents maybe its because their grandparent may be lonely. further more doing so can bring these two generation closer but with the cost of the close relationship between the child and his parents. so there are pro and con in this situation. so i think these parents had think through it before making a decision.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
i think even if it is very tiring it is still possible to take one's children back after working hours on weekdays and care for them when not working...
@olisaur (1932)
• United States
8 Dec 09
Yes I knew a lot of "weekend parents" when I was growing up. Many of my friends had divorced parents and they would live with one full time, and only see the other on weekends and such. I also knew a couple of kids who had parenst that were too busy for them, as you described. Yes, it is sad, but that's waht you get in a materil world. .
1 person likes this
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
i just find it sad that some parents don't even spend the nights with the child, even though they can.
@borg246 (541)
• Malta
8 Dec 09
Many parents, normally young parents end up having children at a young age, marrying without option and normally divorcing a few months/years later. Yes, I know 4 of my friends who are weekend parents and they tell me that either they think that one of their parents love them more or their parents either tell them that they do not have the time to see you or the money to care for you. I think it's very sad for a child of any age to have to live with "weekend parents", I believe they have the right to see their parents and live with their parents all through their lives. In most cases, I would think that "weekend" parenting is either because the parent has no time, they don't care about their child or they even forget that they have a child. This makes me very unhappy indeed.
• Singapore
11 Dec 09
i think some of them never intended to have children but were pressured by their Parents into having kids.
@jojorv (201)
• Philippines
8 Dec 09
we cannot blame parents who works for their family. it the only way for them to sustain their life and to provide better future for their children. I think weekend parents should spend quality time with their children during their spare time during weekends. i think this is a better set-up than being with your children 7 days a week yet you are not giving them the quality attention your children deserve.
• Singapore
8 Dec 09
guess that's true, but I also believe there cannot be quality time without quantity time...
@sublime03 (1811)
• Philippines
8 Dec 09
I also am sad with this kind of setup. I understand that they need to work for their families but everybody should understand that you have to prioritize the well being of your child. Being weekend parents will not create a bond for parents and children. In the end, most of the time it draws their kids farther to them because they are not around for them most of the time. Every parent should always be around their kids as much as possible. It gives them that tight feeling that you will always be there and that there is nothing to fear.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
8 Dec 09
I agree.
@stephcjh (32328)
• United States
8 Dec 09
I think it is sad for the child also but it is better than nothing actually. My daughter's dad chooses not to be a weekday or a weekend parent so it is twice as hard for her. He is not a part of her life at all.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
8 Dec 09
well, if that's what he chose then he will live with that for the rest of his life.
@aguas_aj (501)
• Philippines
9 Dec 09
That kind of set up is really hard for the child and the parents as well, but often, parents have to choose especially if the salary of one parent is not enough for their living expense. Some have no choice because they want to give the best to their kid, well, financially and materially speaking. I grew up with that kind of set up because my mom is a single mother, but whenever she goes home, she always makes it a good weekend. and at night she ALWAYS explains why she has to be away and my aunt has to take care of us. I grew up to be normal kid with complete well being, but I honestly wouldnt want to give the same experience to my son. that's why my husband is working hard and I'm the one handling all the expenses and the budget. Plus i do a little sideline wherein I dont have to leave my kid to his grandma all weekdays. But I dont see anything wrong with that set up for as long that what they are preparing for is the welfare of the child, though it is honestly a sad situation.
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@ahgong (10066)
• Singapore
22 Dec 09
Oh yeah... I used to just hear about it. But I witness it of late as well. I can never understand. It is so difficult for two people to come together. Let alone make a child together. And when they do, they treasure their own free time more than spending time with their child. Like you said, I pity the child. But then again, on the flip side of things, some parents do not have a choice. Their job demands on them may be too tiring for them to care for the child sufficiently, so they decide to become weekend parents as that would mean better care for the child. Until we know the story behind these weekend parents, it is not up to us to judge them.
@Foxxee (3653)
• United States
19 Dec 09
Well, if your a sinlge parent & have no help, you really have no choice but to work to support that child. Yes the parent needs to learn how to juggle his/her hours so she/he can still have that bonding time with the child. What I don't agree with is the parents that send their child to daycare & that parent didn't even have to work that day. Come on parents... yes we understand your alone & you work long hours, but you can & should find some time every day for your child... EVERYDAY!
@cyberfluf (5005)
• Netherlands
11 Dec 09
There are two sides to this story really. First off, research has proven that children won't get damaged if parents work quitte a lot. The time that these parents to spend with their family is mostly quality time. This makes up for the time parents are away from home. Personally, I think that a lot of people would be able to cope with less than a 2 parent income of 5 days per week. But you would have a smaller house, perhaps 1 or 2 less christmas presents. It's all about choices really. On the other side, some parents don't have a choice because they have jobs that pay little and they need both paychecks to get by. If you are a single parent there is no other option either most of the time. I do strongly believe that in these modern days having children has become more and more a choice than something that just happens to you. In most cases nowadays parents try to have a child; so they make a choice. If you know that you will be working 5 days a week, I would seriously reconsider if having a child is the right thing to do. I wouldn't feel comfortable with it personally to have my child raised by people I hardly know (nanny) and I wouldn't want to bring him or her to my parents the whole week either. If you choose to have a child I do believe you should think it through and ask yourself what you owe to this child.