Many no longer bat an eye over the fact that their commute to the office could take an hour each way.

But this dedication pales in comparison to what The Atlantic labels “extreme commuting,” a practice which has an increasing amount of individuals commuting cross-country – or even cross-culturally – every week!

According to the individuals who endure such rigorous commutes, their main reason for doing so is their family. Many don’t want to uproot their children from school and sports activities, or their spouse from a good job. An example of this is Canadian Eric Church:

“Erik Church lives in Toronto, but works in Vancouver, more than 2,000 miles away, where he is the chief operating officer of O2E Brands, the company that owns 1-800-GOT-JUNK?. He took the job four years ago, but decided to commute, not only for his nine-year-old daughter, but also because his wife’s medical practice was established in Toronto.

He now takes a five-hour flight to Vancouver every Sunday night or Monday morning and leaves on Thursdays at 5:00pm. If his daughter has a school recital, he will fly there in one day, catch the recital, and fly back again. His daughter once told her teacher that her dad worked at the airport.”

Stories like these seem commendable – after all, these individuals are sacrificing their own personal comforts to give their families the best of everything, right?

But does it really give a family the best of everything if a spouse and parent are continually absent from the scene? Are parents today placing so much emphasis on preserving their children’s friendships and activities, that they forget the friendship and time of a parent are the most loving things a parent can offer? Have people become so devoted to their jobs that they sacrifice time with their spouses for the sake of those jobs?

Image Credit: Victor Bezrukov