Author Topic: CF member as a single parent-on course, deployed ect... [MERGED]  (Read 74684 times)

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Offline mysteriousmind

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Re: single mom just got my call ..
« Reply #25 on: November 12, 2006, 08:53:19 »
Sunflour,

As a military brat,

My dad had to leave often, I did miss him...and he didn't call or wrote often...I was hard on me. If he had wrote or send care package, or put stickers to see when he was coming back, I think i would have been easier.
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Offline Springroll

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Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #26 on: April 03, 2007, 02:31:54 »
I was curious if there were any single parents on here.

Due to circumstances beyond my control, I will be venturing into this unknown land known as single parenting as a member of the CF. I am looking for pointers and such that will assist with the transition for me.

My kids are 12, 9 and 6 and I am asking for a posting back to BC to be close to my support system, my family.

Advice only please. If you want specifics, pm me.

"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"

Offline Guy Incognito

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #27 on: April 04, 2007, 01:02:18 »
I am not a parent, but I wasn't a kid that long ago, and I was raised by a single parent for the latter half of my childhood. Do bear in mind though, then when my father left, I was 10, brother was 11, and my sister was 14, and we were all fairly mature for our age.

For my family, it came down to a deep amount of trust from my mother, despite her paranoia.

Since my sister went to high school while my brother and I were in elementary school, we didn't have the luxury of her escorting us, as her school was across town from ours. Essentially, my brother and I were given lessons on how to deal with strangers, people offering rides, etc, and my mother trusted us that we would follow them. Bearing in mind this was a small town, we were allowed to walk to school, a whole 3km walk (with backpacks... made excellent practice for future ruck marches  ;) )

A quick google search reveals Esq is about 3x as large as the small town I was raised in. If you're too paranoid about your kids walking to and from school, you should be able to befriend a neighbor who has kids who go to the same schools, and you can arrange for your kids to ride with them. Just make sure your kids are up on time to be ready for rides, else you risk annoying friendly neighbors.

When it comes down to it, make sure your kids know what to do when SHTF for them. I was always told:
1) If you're out walking and need help, run to a house (preferably a block parent) and start banging on the doors.
2) If someone tries to take you, scream bloody murder.

And for at home:
1) If it's a fire, someone's dying, or something else equally bad, dial 911.
2) If it's not that bad, senior sibling's discretion. In the event of disagreement, call mother at work, memorize the number. Please don't harass (parent) at work because sibling x and sibling y can't get along for 5 minutes.

Keep it simple, don't expect them to memorize an operations manual on daily routine.

We also had strict rules for keeping in check: We were required to call our mother once we got home from school. If you want to do anything after school, go home (optional), call (mandatory), and get approval (also mandatory), or else paranoid parent with car/law enforcement/search and rescue will be hunting you down (it took me a few times to get into the swing with this one). If we were going to be late (ie: detention, etc), a call was customary.

Now, bear in mind this was before cell phones became prevalent. Though I have a tendency to believe that cell phones + paranoid parents = bad for kids, I still think they have merit. You might want to check this out:

http://www.telusmobility.com/on/pcs/handset_lg_1000.shtml

One of my younger cadets had one of these, the preprogrammed numbers for him were:
Emerg: 911
1: Home
2: Mother's work
3: Father's work
4: Trusted friend

Kid friendly, and they can't call numbers that aren't programmed in, and also 1-touch emergency is good for panic situations. One of these for the 3 of them should at least allow you to call them and get LOCrep, SITrep, etc in case of excessive paranoia, and allow them to contact you in case of emergency.

---

Essentially, when it comes down to it, keep your kids in touch, but trust them. Be adaptive, and don't be afraid to ask for some help along the way. Your kids may be young, but they should be more than capable of keeping an eye out for eachother.

---

Again, I am not a parent, so grain of salt goes here. This was the doctrine that I was raised under, YMMV.

Offline Roy Harding

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #28 on: April 04, 2007, 01:38:18 »
I am not a single parent - but over the years I had many single parents working for me.

The most important thing is to have a reliable 24/7 network of child care support available to you.  The last thing your section commander wants to hear when there's a bug out is that you couldn't find anyone to take care of the kids.

Don't expect special treatment because you're a single parent - be prepared to pull your weight.  If you do that consistently, you'll get cut the slack you need when you need it.

As a supervisor, I always tried to spread the "shyte jobs" around equally - without consideration for my subordinates marital/parental status.  I watched peers cutting lots of slack to single parents, and heaping the duties on the single guys - this approach doesn't make for a good team.  On the other hand, when parents (single or married) always pulled their full share of duties, I never had a problem getting a single guy to volunteer to do a duty when there was a school concert or other such event.

Have a plan for child care - practice it once in a while - you'll be OK.
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Offline Rider Pride

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #29 on: April 04, 2007, 01:56:57 »
Springroll,
I thought you were married?

Best advice is to get line up a primary and secondary babysitter for both daytime and evenings. See the MFRCs for more info.
"Return with your shield, or upon it."

Offline airmich

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #30 on: April 04, 2007, 06:18:25 »
Be advised that you'll also be required to fill out the Family Care Plan, and implement it if necessary.  This includes for duty, being called into work, and something that is especially going to effect your situation -- sailing.

Check out the PMQs and area, of Belmont Park.  There is a school right there, as well as a teen center and before & after school centre set up by MFRC.  As noted by SMMT, check out the MFRC.  They will help you at least get started.
So I'll raise a glass, not the first nor last, Come join me in this toast...Because the old black rum's got a hold on me ~ Great Big Sea

Offline mover1

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #31 on: April 04, 2007, 08:11:50 »
I am a single parent.  I live off base and I am a man. I have had single parents work for me and I can only give this advice.

A. Get yourself a reliable babysitter who is willing to come in on those odd hours if needed.

B. The MFRC is a good resource. I used it when my children were younger. now....I don't use it so much... I don't think it meets my needs as a man and a military member and although they try hard I find them too orientated towards the wives. (yes I expressed my concerns about this).

C.  .The people you work with can help you out in times of need. Talk to your boss and make sure he is absolutely clear about how much lead time you need for a babysitter etc. That way you are not given a bad rap,

D. unfortunately if you can't get a baby sitter or your kids get sick one after another and you end up spending copious amounts of time at home with the sick kids or late for work because your babysitter doesn't start until 8 am then it may be inevitable to have a few sour grapes in the bunch complaining about you and your kids.  Get a thick skin  and brush off these comments  after all it's just talk. But resolve the problem ASAP

E. Keep your sanity. Take time for you and ONLY YOU at least once a week . Whether it be a guilty pleasure of McDonald's without the kids. Taking a dance lesson or just getting out once in a while to socialise.

F. There will be good days and bad days and days where you just go crazy. This is normal.


Offline Springroll

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #32 on: April 04, 2007, 09:16:22 »
Thanks for the advice, everyone! I really appreciated it.

I am not worried about being a single parent since I was one before I met my soon to be ex, but being one in the CF has me a little tweaked.

St Michael's Medical Team, as I said in my first post, due to circumstances beyond my control, I am having to venture into single parenthood...so in other words, I am getting a divorce. Not my choice mind you, but I will just roll up my sleeves and keep on trucking. Not much point in sulking and such...I have three kids I need to worry about.

Thanks again everyone. If you think of any other pointers, please post them.
"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"

Offline Rider Pride

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #33 on: April 04, 2007, 13:13:02 »
Springroll,
Sorry to hear that. Unfortunately you are not the first, nor will you be the last soon to be ex wife who has just finished joinng the military.
"Return with your shield, or upon it."

Offline Springroll

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #34 on: April 04, 2007, 14:32:30 »
Springroll,
Sorry to hear that. Unfortunately you are not the first, nor will you be the last soon to be ex wife who has just finished joinng the military.

I know...just his timing really sucks.
It was a distraction before, but now I have pushed it to the back of my mind and am even more focused on my studies.
"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"

Offline BYT Driver

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #35 on: April 04, 2007, 16:53:30 »
Springroll,
  So sorry to hear your bad news.  I won't go on about him being an...
  With good hope, you have a loving family and good friends who will help out when the need arises.  There are many single parents in the military and they "soldier on", bear down and persevere.  Lean on your friends on course and all will straighten out in the long run.
 ;D   

Offline proudnurse

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Re: Single Parents in the Military
« Reply #36 on: May 18, 2007, 14:13:54 »
 ;D

Got the notification in red (about no reply for at least 100 days) before I put an update here. I did not want to go and start a new thread (there is no point, since I have already written about it before)

Well, there is an update... from me when it comes to applying. This week, it's been on my mind more than it ever has for the last 3 yrs where I first met the Canadian Forces at a job fair here in Cambridge. I did have an application package, from a while ago now that I did take time to read through this week. Well, after I went to class this morning I found myself talking to a Recruiter again. I took the drive up to Kitchener... beauty day for a drive :) too I spoke with a female Sgt and she also gave me some info pertaining to Nursing in the CF. Looks like I have paperwork to fill out over the weekend! I am going to take an honest attempt, to put some serious work into it and finally get the ball rolling here! The achedemic upgrading that I have been taking since January, is rolling along quite awesome too, I'll be finished that up for January :)

She suggested that I call the 23rd Medical Unit in Hamilton. I called and left them a v/m, and while I wait for thier call looks like I'll be getting my things together in the meantime. I'd like to go down to one of thier parade nights if I could.

The call of duty has been there for me for so long now, it's time this gal does something about it!

~Rebecca
~Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.

Mother Teresa

Offline oolybooly

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #37 on: February 05, 2008, 00:16:21 »
hey :D was just wondering how its been working out for you since you posted. im a single mom and have been wanting to join the forces but cant seem to find much on single parents. i was interested in knowing how single parents are working things out, how theyre lives have changed for better/worse or what things they wish they couldve done or not done. i really admire and respect all of you out there who have made this decision!! thanks a lot for any info!

Offline Springroll

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #38 on: February 05, 2008, 20:36:59 »
Well, it has been quite a wild ride the last 8-9 mths...lol

My oldest son moved out here in April and was residing with my mother while I was still in the shacks in Victoria.
In late June, he was hit by a car, so I was recoursed off my course so that I could take a week of compassionate time with him. I did have to fight a little to get the fore noon off the next day so that i could see his ICU Dr and the specialists, but for the most part, my section was supportive and compassionate to the situation.

During my summer leave I went back to Hfx, grabbed my other two kids and all our stuff and moved west. Got lucky and got a PMQ in work point. Close to schools, amenities, and only a 5 minutes commute to work! Right after that, my house out east sold (that is another BS story thx to the ex) and I started back up on my new course, right from scratch. The course has been alot easier this time around, and I have 3 weeks to the day left before graduating and moving on. I think it has only been easier because I had the kids here with me now. I was a working/stay at home mom before, so 10.5 mths without them was very hard for me.

Trying to problem solve before a problem arises has probably been the best thing I could have done.
All three kids have had the flu a few times each, but thanks for a very great friend(my daycare provider) and my family, I have been able to still go to work, worry free. That is a huge relief!! Now I am heading into my next phase of training, my naval environmental training, and then on to my new posting come May, and feel pretty ready for it. My posting has me a little concerned, but there isn't much I can do until I get there and they tell me what will be happening...I am not a fan of the unknown...I MUST know everything..lol That is a good thing and a bad thing, depending on the situation.

I would not worry too much about being a single parent in the CF. There is a great support network out there, and you will make a ton of friends who will help you out in your times of need(such as a weekend duty watch!). I have not utilized the MFRC as of yet. I have found they have been more directed towards the SAHM/spouses of CF members. I am gonna take some time next week to go in there and see what services i am able to utilize, that are more directed towards my situation.

I wish you the best of luck, and if you have any more questions, just pm me on here...I will gladly answer them!
Cheers!
"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"

Offline PMedMoe

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #39 on: February 05, 2008, 20:43:41 »
Sounds like things are working out great, Springroll.  Glad to hear it.
I know it's difficult being away from your kids.  My daughter is 16 years old and lives with her Dad.  They have been living in Labrador and N.B. and I have been in Ontario since she was 4.  We get to see each other 2-3 times a year for a week or two at a time and it's hard.  But one thing I can say, she's so much like me that my ex (actually a nice guy) has never really been rid of me!  >:D
"A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving".
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Offline exgunnertdo

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #40 on: February 05, 2008, 20:53:34 »
Something for all single parents to know about - Family Care Allowance.  Provides $$ for extra child care if you are away from home overnight for service reasons.  (Extra being the operative word - you are still responsible for day-to-day child care, this is for the nights).  There are a few specific rules related to the allowance, so check it out before hand.  Also applies to service couples who are both away at the same time.
"Leave the Artillerymen alone, they are an obstinate lot. . ."
"God fights on the side with the best artillery"
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Offline Springroll

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #41 on: February 05, 2008, 22:10:45 »
Something for all single parents to know about - Family Care Allowance.

Is this something through the CF or through the MFRC??
That may be just one more thing I can take off my plate!!
"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"

Offline PMedMoe

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #42 on: February 06, 2008, 08:05:28 »
It would appear that it is through the CF.

CBI 209.335 - FAMILY CARE ASSISTANCE
"A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving".
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Offline exgunnertdo

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #43 on: February 06, 2008, 09:02:59 »
"Leave the Artillerymen alone, they are an obstinate lot. . ."
"God fights on the side with the best artillery"
- Napoleon

Offline Springroll

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #44 on: February 06, 2008, 09:39:01 »
Thanks a bunch, both of you!!
Gonna print that stuff up today at work!
"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"

Offline airmich

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #45 on: February 10, 2008, 07:14:58 »
The FCA is great!  I have used it many times, most recently for when I was on my 3's course last year.  The money sure added up and really helped me out alot. 

A big thing to note on it, even though it says right within the regulations, many clerks haven't processed a claim for it before and aren't too up on everything.  It DOES NOT have to be a registered child care provider ("commercial care").  Therefore, if a family member (this member cannot reside permanently at your place of residence though) or neighbour looks after your child(ren), all you need to provide for a receipt is a signed note ("declaration") from that person stating that they looked after so-and-so for this period of time for this amount of money.

I don't think this benefit is as widely known as it should be. 
So I'll raise a glass, not the first nor last, Come join me in this toast...Because the old black rum's got a hold on me ~ Great Big Sea

Offline Celticgirl

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #46 on: February 10, 2008, 08:13:03 »
I'm a single parent just applying to the CF, and I have to thank springroll for this thread because I've had similar questions. I'm glad to see that this is 'doable'! :)
You can't separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom. ~ Malcolm X

Offline exgunnertdo

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #47 on: February 11, 2008, 08:23:15 »
Be cautious about "banking" this money (FCA) too soon - the policy states, among other things that the member must be "MOS qualified, i.e. a member must have completed a MOS qualification, or moved D, HG&E at public expense for service reasons;"

Airmich qualified on her 3s based on being trade qual'd in another trade. 

Fresh recruits off the street are not eligible for this as a rule - don't count your money till it arrives in the bank.
"Leave the Artillerymen alone, they are an obstinate lot. . ."
"God fights on the side with the best artillery"
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Offline airmich

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #48 on: February 11, 2008, 08:45:22 »
Airmich qualified on her 3s based on being trade qual'd in another trade. 

Fresh recruits off the street are not eligible for this as a rule - don't count your money till it arrives in the bank.

Thanks exgunnertdo.  I knew there was something else that I meant to stress in my earlier post.  I was lucky in this regards, to have been previously qualified and able to receive the funds.  For new members starting out, it is a long haul, especially with the wait times for a QL3 course.  Be sure that your support system is in place (with backups and backup for your backups!) BEFORE you go on course.  As much as you are still going to worry about your kids, you need to have an ease of mind to allow yourself to maintain your focus on your career.
So I'll raise a glass, not the first nor last, Come join me in this toast...Because the old black rum's got a hold on me ~ Great Big Sea

Offline Springroll

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Re: Single Parenting in the CF
« Reply #49 on: February 12, 2008, 10:57:36 »
So, let me just get this straight in my head.

I am entitled to FCA if:
(a) I am MOS qual'd
or
(b) have had my HG&E(household goods and effects) moved at public expense

I had my HG&E moved out last July at public expense, before I was MOS qual'd. Would this then entitle me to FCA now?

Not that it really matters for me right now. I on on night classes and then grad in 2 weeks, but I am sure there are others out there who have had public expense moves before finishing(or even starting) their 3's training, and this fund would help them out if they were in a sticky situation and required someone to watch their children evenings or weekends due to training.
"Take every day with a grain of salt. This works much better if the salt accompanies a Margarita"