Family Values @ Work

Michelle’s Story

Michelle’s Story

September 20, 2013

My six-year-old son had struggled with behavioral problems, which first became apparent when he started attending preschool. His father refused professional help for our son, and over time, it became apparent that my son was suffering emotional abuse and that he desperately needed help. I took it upon myself to take my son fully under my care, and in doing so, learned that there had been incidents of physical abuse from my husband and his mother against our son and also against my daughter.

Unfortunately, my son’s behavioral struggles continue, and without his father’s cooperation, seeking help is limited. Currently, he’s unable to focus and function normally in the classroom without a significant amount of intervention of the school’s staff. Even with their support, he can only attend half of the day. Additionally, I do not have any family members that can watch my son for me, and since my divorce and allocation of parental responsibilities is still pending, I cannot properly access childcare.

My sister, however, can watch my children for me on the weekends, so my work time has been limited to weekends only. I have been living in my mother’s one-bedroom condo, and I need to provide more in terms of place of living for me and my children, but with as little as I make working only weekends, I cannot possibly afford that. I need to take care of my family first and foremost, and the majority of that time is invested in caring for my son. I feel that Family Leave Insurance could have immensely assisted with my situation. No one should have to choose between taking care of their family or being able to work enough to provide the basics.



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