Balancing Work and Family

As parents, we struggle to meet the demands of both our jobs and our families. We want to do well at work, but we also want to give our children the time and attention they need.

When we come home tired, routines can help us manage our stress. So try to keep to routines for meals, after-dinner activities and bedtimes. Plan ahead for possible problems with child care or transportation or when you or your child is sick. Find out about your benefits at work, so that you’ll know your choices if you do have a problem.

Balancing Work and Family
Jerry says, “I’m working weekends right now, so I take care of Matthew during the week while my wife works.”

Benefits for Working Parents

  • Most employees can use up to half of their own sick leave to care for a sick child, parent, spouse or domestic partner.
  • You may be able to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid Family Medical Leave if you have a baby, adopt a child, become a foster parent, have a health problem or need to care for an ill family member. Call Legal Aid Society or visit
  • You may be able to take up to 40 hours a year to attend your children’s school activities—such as field trips, parent- teacher conferences and graduations. Call Legal Aid Society or visit
  • You may qualify for up to 16 weeks of State Disability Insurance (SDI) while you’re on maternity leave. Talk to your employer or call State Disability Insurance Program.

Things You Can Do

Where to Find Help

Learn More

Further Your Career
Carmen is working from home so she can take care of her son, Carlos, while he is sick.

Further Your Career

    • Join a job club for support and networking.
    • Interview people who have the kind of job you want.
    • One-Stop Career Centers offer career counseling, job training and literacy classes. They can help you make a résumé and practice for interviews. Call Employment or America’s Workforce Helpline. Visit
    • If you have a disability, call Disability Services.