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How employers can support the mental health of working parents

By Lyra Health - an Accolade Trusted Partner | September 20, 2023 | 3 min read

Balancing a career and having a family can often feel like an impossible task for parents charged with providing their loved ones with the best life possible. According to Dr. Jenson Reiser, clinical quality supervisor at Lyra Health, when a loved one is suffering, it can impact a whole family’s well-being.

We at Lyra Health want to help, and we’re doing so through our approach with blended care therapy, which is a combination of live therapy and digital lessons. To create a culture of family health, a workplace needs to consider diversity and family options from a holistic perspective with modalities that offer the flexibility of in-person, telehealth, or availability outside typical business hours.

Here are some hard facts. One in five children experience a mental, emotional, or behavioral disorder. And 38% of parents say their workplaces don’t have a family culture. As a result of these two large issues, among others, 32% of parents have felt the only course of action was to change or quit their job in the past two years due to their child’s mental health. 

With Lyra, every family member gets care tailored to their specific needs so they can get better, faster. With the largest network of more than 4,400 evidence-based providers specializing in child and teen mental health, Lyra’s access to proven care is easier than ever.

School can also be a source of stress for kids and parents. Protocols for attending school, coordinating work and extracurricular schedules, and ensuring healthiness have become more stringent since the COVID-19 pandemic.

It’s more important than ever for employers to inspire a culture that not only accepts family life but encourages it, and wants every employee, with children of all ages, to thrive. Most importantly, parent-centric policies must go beyond that of just paid parental leave with a newborn.

Companies that encourage mental well-being build resilience. Employers need to take the first step in building a family-oriented culture. They must lead by example, expressing vulnerabilities and emphasizing that it’s good to take time to care for your family and also for yourself so you don’t suffer burnout.

It’s important to encourage your employees to know their stress signals — whether those are physical, behavioral, emotional, cognitive, or relational, or a combination of them all. An informal audience survey taken during a recent webinar found that parents shy away from self-care because it takes too much time, everyone else in their lives takes priority, and, ultimately, it costs too much.

Lyra provides coaching and individual therapy resources to parents that can help them identify practical approaches for self-care and overcome obstacles like time or competing priorities. Lyra also provides couples and family therapy. These involve in-person and video sessions to remain as flexible as families need.

When a child is suffering, a parent is suffering.

To learn more about Lyra and Accolade’s joint approach to family mental health, view our webinar: “Supporting your workforce and their children’s mental health.”

Lyra is part of Accolade's Trusted Partner Ecosystem which exists to simplify benefits selection for our customers and drive a more integrated experience for our members.

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