Filipino culture revolves around the family. The parents and grandparents care for the kids. Adult children are expected to care for the aging parents.

But it’s not that easy for a lot of Filipino families. My son Austin saw this firsthand in Marinduque. For a lot of Filipinos, if you want to provide for your family, you have to work away from home. If you want to stay with your family, you risk starving.

But when you’re an Online Filipino Specialist, you don’t have to worry about that. You can do both.

From one of my OFS:

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Hi! My name is Jam. I’m one of John’s OFS. I do customer support and QA.

My mother had a medical emergency a few weeks back. Thankfully, she’s doing better now. But because of that incident, this meant my mom had to go to several doctors’ appointments almost every day for several weeks. 

If I had a regular job, I would have to take a leave of absence. Knowing how long that leave would be, I might have considered quitting.

I know how stressful this situation can be, being pulled on both sides. You’re worried about your parent’s health and you want to be there for them. But you’re also worried about whether you still have a job when you get back. You’re scared for your parents and scared you won’t be able to provide for my own family.

But because I work from home, I didn’t need to quit. I didn’t even take a leave of absence. I was able to work because I had my laptop and my parents do have internet in their place. I also have my mobile data with me for times we are out. In fact, the work actually helped me fill the time in waiting rooms and between doctors’ appointments. I can be there for them without worrying about work.

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I wasn’t even aware that Jam’s been doing this for weeks. He was working the entire time.

There is something else interesting here.  Because his mom had to go to several doctors’ appointments, he would consider quitting!

That’s different!

In the US, we would take our parents to the doctor and go back to work.

Things are different in the Philippines.  My guess is there isn’t another way for Jam’s mom to get to the doctor without his help.  My guess is also that it takes him all day to get her there and back.

In the Philippines, missing work for something like this carries the chance of being embarrassed. At not doing a good job. At being looked down upon.

Be aware of this cultural difference.  It might keep a good OFS working for you at some point.

John