Studying anything will take up a large chunk of your time, and programming is no different. You’ll be spending upwards of 30-40 hours in front of the computer as you continuously refine your skills as you work. Dedicating all this time can leave you at risk of not having much time for the other things that matter in your life, namely, family.
Programming is one of the most lucrative and long-lasting careers out there, so you and your family should be considering it as a long-term investment. It can be difficult, more so if there is financial strain. Knowing that the end payoff can be large should be an encouragement to look towards the future. Would you rather work at a regular job that may not pay well, a job in a sunset industry, or a job that pays well and is in a field you are passionate about?
Scheduling is key whether in studies, work or allocating time to family. Time is a precious resource, so knowing where and how you spend the time will prevent you from getting overwhelmed by your responsibilities. Having family, or people you trust, understanding the effort you are putting in would do wonders to improve your outlook and motivation to keep going. Being able to allocate time and tasks through a set schedule can at least keep the life outside of studying stable.
As with any other profession, programming takes a lot of time in regards to gaining experience and continuous learning and improving. New systems and coding languages could pop up on top of work itself, requiring dedication. Expect spending at least the first 3 years working hard after graduating from your course.
Code not running well or flat out break or not work is part and parcel of studying to be a programmer. Keep expectations of yourself realistic, and realize that you will need to keep practicing and testing to have your code run smoothly. Focus on reaching your end goal and tackle the bugs as they come along. It can be frustrating, thus having someone to listen to your troubles could help clear your mind.
Encouragement from family is important as the greatest thing to push you forward to your goal. Don’t let comparisons with friends who seem to be doing better discourage you. As long as you keep going, you’re bound to get somewhere!