This conversation in our private wives group was just too good to not share.  We’ve all been there.  And a big thank you to Lisa Green for her view and for summing it up so nicely.

The request:

I am feeling so let down and emotional right now. I’ve spoken to my firefighter a total of 14:43 mins today. I’m feeling like he’d rather play blackjack with the fire boys than have an actual convo about my day. I’ve sent him countless pics and texts and have gotten very little or no reply. I hate this!!! This is the time I start to question where I stand in this relationship with him….does he truly care??  I’m so sad disappointed and tired. And when I send him a message about how nice it was for him to take 15 mins out of his 24 hr day to talk to me I get nothing back. ~A Sweet emotional lady who loves her firefighter.

2013-07-13 12.25.46

(Relax, this is a fictitious text 😉 )


Lisa’s Response

My firefighter and I are the “old goats” of our firefighter wives group: I’m 45, FF is 55, married 16 yrs, sons are 14 and 11. I have worked out of the house, from home and been a SAHM.

Firefighter life is all we know.

My firefighter is so busy at work he doesn’t have time to get on the phone, if he does he can’t give 100% attention.

There are times he can get to his phone but can’t focus enough to reply to a text with anything more than “OK.” I asked if he thinks of us while at work and he said, “all the time.” At the fire department they talk about spouses/kids, his lockers is like a family shrine, he has pictures in his duffel bag.

My husband and I got together in 1996 – no cell phones or texts. We had pagers & landlines.

It was common to go an entire shift without speaking much less seeing each other. We, too, lived/live too far from the fire department to visit.

Before you get upset with him and/or your marriage, think about this:

What can you do?

What can you do to ensure you have others you can call so your firefighter isn’t the only adult with whom you have contact?

It doesn’t have to be someone in the fire service and it doesn’t have to be a best friend…just someone you can meet at the library with the kids, or at a McDonald’s playground, a park, a mall. You may have to do a few of those things on your own at first and it might be uncomfortable but it gets easier, and once you meet another mom/parent it will be worth it.

It doesn’t mean this other person will get our firefighter wife life but you will be able to get out of the house.

I don’t eat McDonald’s but the air conditioned playground was great when it was raining or 98 degrees outside. The mall was also a great air conditioned place the kids could run around and burn some energy.

I can’t tell you this goes away…even after 16 years (with cell phones, texts, e-mail) my firefighter and I still don’t get to talk.

He is is in the middle of working 56 now and we exchanged one text message and spoke for 3 minutes last night – then I heard the tones and he said, “I have to go.”

For my firefighter…just because he is in the station doesn’t mean he can or wants to talk.

He wants to eat, use the bathroom, take a shower, clear his head.

I think about being home with the kids when they were very young. If given the opportunity to shower, nap or sit on the toilet alone….I would take it over anything else. This is no different from our firefighters.

Just because they are not on a call doesn’t mean their brains aren’t churning about the “next” call.

Most of the time when not on a call my firefighter is in a class, training, or giving a fire department tour.

We are married to firefighters. The only thing you do have control over is your mindset.

Don’t wait for things to get better, you make them better.

In your head say, “My life is falling together.” Do that enough and it will happen. This is one of the reasons we firefighter wives are a special breed.

Thanks for sharing, Lisa!  We don’t all come into the fire life primed and ready for all.the.chaos it brings.  It’s this kind of encouragement that our newbies need to know that they too can master this fire life with patience, time, and developing great communication skills with their firefighters.

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On a mission to be and inspire us all to be better humans, to strengthen fire families & marriages, to nurture and encourage fire wives, do "good business" in all areas of my life and of course, love on my 4 kids.