An East Sussex author has written a children’s bedtime story that explains the challenges faced by working parents.
Children’s author Giles Paley-Phillips partnered with global job site Indeed to create the bedtime story ‘Tick Tock Till Bedtime’ to help make the challenges faced by working parents more understandable for children.
It follows research commissioned by Indeed which found a third of British parents admit they work too late to tuck their children in to bed at least three nights-a-week.
A poll of 1,000 working mums and dads found more than seven in ten rely on partners or grandparents to read their children a story each night.
And one fifth have said goodnight via video calling when they cannot be there in person.
Thirty-four per cent admitted feeling ‘guilty’ for losing out on this quality time and struggle to explain to their children why they miss bedtime.
This new book celebrates the highs and lows that come with the working week, and how this can affect whether a parent makes it home for bedtime or not.
Giles, author of the award-winning ‘The Fearsome Beastie’, said: “As a working parent I totally understand that explaining the challenges of the working world to kids can be really tough.
“We wanted to create an engaging bedtime tale which would help children understand the pressures their parents face, and encourage open dialogue at home.
“I hope the characters can become great examples for young families.”
The research found 18 per cent of late-running parents turn to sweet treats to make up for staying at work too long.
And a tenth confess to using elaborate – or just plain fabricated – excuses as an alibi.
One in four workers blame ‘presenteeism’ – feeling obligated to stay at work longer than necessary – for their late arrival home.
Fifty-seven per cent regularly have to stay at work beyond their contracted hours.
When it comes to missing bedtime, four in ten feel they lack the tools to explain their jobs in child-friendly terms, and almost half feel their kids have ‘no understanding’ of what their job involves.
The battle for bedtime has led 48 per cent of parents to consider a change in career in an effort to find more flexible hours.
And flexible working supersedes opportunity for progression and holiday allowance when it comes to workers’ wish lists in new roles.