Tips for dads living in isolation like FIFO dads

Here are some tips for dad’s currently experiencing isolation due to COVID, so may be FIFO dads, or dads affected by border closures.

  1. Structure is key. It is easy to get into a trap of letting each day merge into the next when you are on our weeks off especially when you’re not going home to the family or seeing the kids. It is important to create a good routine, wake up at your normal time, get out and do some exercise, find a local café and make this your breakfast place, zone off family communication time, try and make it the same time each day, catch up with other FIFO dads in the same situation, get a few good books, keep a regular structure around you.
  2. Keep fit. Go for a walk, a swim, get a weekly gym pass, find a favourite exercise channel o your tube, go running, do – anything to get the endorphins and adrenaline going to help your overall wellbeing.
  3. Time outside. Get outdoors for some Vitamin D the lack of it can contribute to low moods. Take time to go outside, walk around the block or just around a park.
  4. Keep connected. Being away from the family can feel very overwhelming at times, and make you feel emotionally vulnerable, sad or worried about not being there for them. Stay connected to friends and family and make use of video-apps.
  5. Check in each day, help your kids with their home-work online, read to them over the facetime, take them on a walk with you and share your day, be creative and find ways to be in their life using technology.

  6. Check in on your mental wellness and your partners. When the kids have gone to bed, talk with your partner about the uncertainty, make sure your dealing as well as you can with the situation. When people are separated from their families and support networks for long periods of time it can have a significant detrimental impact on their levels of stress and anxiety. If you are struggling, please call Lifeline on 131 114, or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.
  7. Mindset is really important. Whilst you cannot control the circumstances, you can control how you react to them. Try to focus on the positives and reflect this attitude to your kids and partner.

If you are struggling, call Lifeline on 131 114, or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.
If children are struggling, they can call Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800 or Youth Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636


Bruce Robinson’s fatherly advice

You speak to enough smart people and smart words eventually stick in your head. That’s the theory, anyway.


Be a coach

Being involved in your child's activities means you are there on a regular basis.