The risks and demands of PSPs’ jobs set PSP families and couples apart from others. These couples and families recognize the different ways they have to live and that they are sometimes considered “different” by the public. The demands and expectations of the job can sometimes also be felt by PSP families. Families can be celebrated, supported, scorned, blamed, or have their contributions unrecognized which can lead to feeling of ambivalence and/or conflict. PSP couples and families can be highly affected by both the public’s expectations and the levels of support they get from the organizations or the community.
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PSP family members have reported feeling resentment when the PSP job is prioritized and seems to be more important than family. PSP’s work is usually less flexible than typical jobs.
Encountering Work-Family Conflicts
Working adults are often confronted by both the demands of work and the demands of family. Long hours and rotating shifts can interfere with family time, and family life (e.g., childcare) can interfere with work.
Thinking about Public Opinion
Movies and TV often portray PSP work as either glamorous or corrupt which can lead to misinformation about ‘the job’. Media and social media can also shift public perception in the way that they report stories involving PSP.
Understanding the Effects of Workplace Requirements on the Family
PSP families have little control over unpredictable work schedules and can find themselves competing with the organization for family time. Families face challenges so that PSP can maintain their loyalty and fulfill their commitment.
Having Mixed Feelings
Family members are often involved in the organization in some way, and also take part in supporting the PSP outside of work. However, PSP families may feel some tension with that role as they try to take care of their own needs and wellbeing.
Living with Irregular Work Schedules
Long work shifts can mean that PSP are also off work for longer periods in between shifts and can spend time with their families. However, unexpected changes to work schedules can also cause havoc with family routines.