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    Default Girlfriend of probie-advice welcome

    Hello,

    My boyfriend recently got a job with a full time department and will be starting the academy in a few days. He has been on a volunteer department since we started dating, but I know there will be lots of new things to expect as he starts his full time career. I'd appreciate advice from other full time firefighters and their significant others on what to expect, how to handle it, and the best ways in which to support him through this stressful time.

    Thanks!

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    Knowledge enters via the eyes and ears only, not through the mouth. So, eyes and ears wide open, mouth tightly closed! (Except to answer instructors' questions.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by chiefengineer11 View Post
    Knowledge enters via the eyes and ears only, not through the mouth. So, eyes and ears wide open, mouth tightly closed! (Except to answer instructors' questions.)
    Thanks! I'll be sure to pass that on to him. Do you have any advice for me on what I can expect while he's in probie school (stress he'll be under, pressure, time commitment, etc.) and the best ways I can support or encourage him?

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    Post a picture and I'm sure you'll get lots of advice.
    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

    "The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list."

    "When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water."

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    Default Picture attatched

    Not sure how a picture will help me to get advise but its worth a shot i suppose! Picture is attatched
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDGF View Post
    Not sure how a picture will help me to get advise but its worth a shot i suppose! Picture is attatched
    Oh god, I was kidding... well, you will get lots of responses now!
    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

    "The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list."

    "When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water."

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    Quote Originally Posted by chiefkn View Post
    oh god, i was kidding... Well, you will get lots of responses now!
    lol.





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    First off congrats to your boy friend for making it this far. Secondly I'm not speaking from experience having gone through a full-time academy, although I have been through one for my vol dept. I just didn't want to misrepresent myself and I'm sure others will chime in with what they went through and offer some further advice.

    Academies can be a pretty stressful time for a relationship. PT is usually early in the morning, then he's gonna have a day full of classroom info and/or practicals and evolutions. He will be tired when he comes home and then he's going to have to study his materials during the evening. If he's taking the studying seriously (and he should) there will be little time to just hang out with you, household chores, etc. My wife took on a lot of the stuff that I didn't have time for during my academy without even mentioning it, and I appreciated that tremendously.

    But don't view this as something that he has to go through by himself though. There are ways that you can help him study, by reviewing quiz questions and drilling him on verbalizing evolution steps. It sounds like you are trying to take an active role already by realizing this could be difficult and coming on here for some advice so kudos to you.

    And remember that it's only for a few months and then things will lighten up... a bit. There's still plenty to learn as a probie.

    Best of luck to him and you!
    Nothing is as unimpressive as someone who is unwilling to learn.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yjbrody View Post
    First off congrats to your boy friend for making it this far. Secondly I'm not speaking from experience having gone through a full-time academy, although I have been through one for my vol dept. I just didn't want to misrepresent myself and I'm sure others will chime in with what they went through and offer some further advice.

    Academies can be a pretty stressful time for a relationship. PT is usually early in the morning, then he's gonna have a day full of classroom info and/or practicals and evolutions. He will be tired when he comes home and then he's going to have to study his materials during the evening. If he's taking the studying seriously (and he should) there will be little time to just hang out with you, household chores, etc. My wife took on a lot of the stuff that I didn't have time for during my academy without even mentioning it, and I appreciated that tremendously.

    But don't view this as something that he has to go through by himself though. There are ways that you can help him study, by reviewing quiz questions and drilling him on verbalizing evolution steps. It sounds like you are trying to take an active role already by realizing this could be difficult and coming on here for some advice so kudos to you.

    And remember that it's only for a few months and then things will lighten up... a bit. There's still plenty to learn as a probie.

    Best of luck to him and you!
    Thanks for the advice! That's exactly the kind of information I'm looking for. I think it can be really easy for wives, girlfriends, and significant others to feel out of the loop and left to figure things out for themselves. If only we were given a manual for you guys on how to be understanding and offer the right kind of support for such a stressful job. I want to be as involved as possible so that I can appreciate the job and how much it means to him, and also so that I don't develop resentment toward him for all the time I will have to spend alone. It will definitely take some getting used to. I really appreciate the advice!! I'll take as much of it as I can get! You guys have such commendable jobs and it's important to me that he have plenty of support on the home-front. Thanks for your help!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    Oh god, I was kidding... well, you will get lots of responses now!
    SMH. ChiefKN, now it's your turn. Picture please!

    FDGF, he was messing with you, no need to post your picture (in case you want to edit it). My husband just went through 7 months of academy. Today is his second day out on company. How he needs you to be will completely depend on what his personality is. For us, I was essentially a single parent for 7 months (longer really, because before the academy, he worked out of town mon-fri). But every day after school, my husband went and worked out, then hit the library until it closed. we spent time together on weekends. I helped him study when I could tell he needed it. I listened when he needed to vent his frustrations. I got him ice packs for his knees and iceyhot for his shoulders. I tried harder to take care of all the at home day to day stuff. Bottom line is for you to be perceptive, help where you can and dont take any lack of attention personally. Hub witnessed 2 guys who became fast friends of his go through breakups during those 7 months. For us though, we're married for good or bad, and I knew in my heart this was where he belonged. I wanted it for him as much as he wanted it for himself. In the long run, it will pay off for us, I know it will.
    Good luck!
    Last edited by IrishWife; 08-04-2011 at 03:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FDGF View Post
    Thanks for the advice! That's exactly the kind of information I'm looking for. I think it can be really easy for wives, girlfriends, and significant others to feel out of the loop and left to figure things out for themselves. If only we were given a manual for you guys on how to be understanding and offer the right kind of support for such a stressful job. I want to be as involved as possible so that I can appreciate the job and how much it means to him, and also so that I don't develop resentment toward him for all the time I will have to spend alone. It will definitely take some getting used to. I really appreciate the advice!! I'll take as much of it as I can get! You guys have such commendable jobs and it's important to me that he have plenty of support on the home-front. Thanks for your help!
    NP. One thing I left out that might help will depend on the size of the academy, but maybe you could reach out to some of the other recruits significant others. It may be a good way to get to know some people that are going through the same thing. Mrs. yjbrody didn't have anything like this the first go around, but would have really appreciated it.

    Like you said, the last thing you want is to resent him for spending all this time with others.

    Take care and focus on the long term.

    PS Oh, good to see IrishLake chimed in since she just went through this.
    Nothing is as unimpressive as someone who is unwilling to learn.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    Oh god, I was kidding... well, you will get lots of responses now!
    OPPS Now you have done it. Every member, with the exception of you, Harve and I, will be hitting on her now.
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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    Quote Originally Posted by FDGF View Post
    Not sure how a picture will help me to get advise but its worth a shot i suppose! Picture is attatched


    retracted post
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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    Quote Originally Posted by IrishLake View Post
    SMH. ChiefKN, now it's your turn. Picture please!

    FDGF, he was messing with you, no need to post your picture (in case you want to edit it). My husband just went through 7 months of academy. Today is his second day out on company. How he needs you to be will completely depend on what his personality is. For us, I was essentially a single parent for 7 months (longer really, because before the academy, he worked out of town mon-fri). But every day after school, my husband went and worked out, then hit the library until it closed. we spent time together on weekends. I helped him study when I could tell he needed it. I listened when he needed to vent his frustrations. I got him ice packs for his knees and iceyhot for his shoulders. I tried harder to take care of all the at home day to day stuff. Bottom line is for you to be perceptive, help where you can and dont take any lack of attention personally. Hub witnessed 2 guys who became fast friends of his go through breakups during those 7 months. For us though, we're married for good or bad, and I knew in my heart this was where he belonged. I wanted it for him as much as he wanted it for himself. In the long run, it will pay off for us, I know it will.
    Good luck!
    Thanks for your advice! It's nice to hear from someone who has gone through the same situation and can speak from experience. It's great that you were able to be so supportive even when your husband was gone so much. That's one thing I'm a little nervous about and would love to hear how you handled being alone so much. I know the job requires a great deal of his attention and that he will need to focus, but does it ever slow down a bit? Were you ever able to spend time with him or plan a date night once in a while? The thought of being in a relationship with someone I never get to see is a bit unsettling. Do you have any suggestions for me? I expect him to be busy, and much of his time consumed, but I don't want things to get to the point where we just feel like room mates instead. This is all very new to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptOldTimer View Post
    OPPS Now you have done it. Every member, with the exception of you, Harve and I, will be hitting on her now.
    I always knew that my buddies at the FH would be there for my wife while I traveled for work.... so I never told em when I would be gone!

    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

    "The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list."

    "When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water."

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    Quote Originally Posted by yjbrody View Post
    NP. One thing I left out that might help will depend on the size of the academy, but maybe you could reach out to some of the other recruits significant others. It may be a good way to get to know some people that are going through the same thing. Mrs. yjbrody didn't have anything like this the first go around, but would have really appreciated it.

    Like you said, the last thing you want is to resent him for spending all this time with others.

    Take care and focus on the long term.

    PS Oh, good to see IrishLake chimed in since she just went through this.
    Thanks for the tip! That's a good idea. Hopefully I can get to know some of the other wives and girlfriends. It would be great to have people I could talk to that understand what I'm going through. I'm hoping my boyfriend and I can figure out a way to prevent the stress of the job from coming between us and starting arguments. It's a very selfless job, and thus requires spouses and significant others to be more selfless than usual. Thanks again! Your advice is greatly appreciated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IrishLake View Post
    SMH. ChiefKN, now it's your turn. Picture please!

    FDGF, he was messing with you, no need to post your picture (in case you want to edit it). My husband just went through 7 months of academy. Today is his second day out on company. How he needs you to be will completely depend on what his personality is. For us, I was essentially a single parent for 7 months (longer really, because before the academy, he worked out of town mon-fri). But every day after school, my husband went and worked out, then hit the library until it closed. we spent time together on weekends. I helped him study when I could tell he needed it. I listened when he needed to vent his frustrations. I got him ice packs for his knees and iceyhot for his shoulders. I tried harder to take care of all the at home day to day stuff. Bottom line is for you to be perceptive, help where you can and dont take any lack of attention personally. Hub witnessed 2 guys who became fast friends of his go through breakups during those 7 months. For us though, we're married for good or bad, and I knew in my heart this was where he belonged. I wanted it for him as much as he wanted it for himself. In the long run, it will pay off for us, I know it will.
    Good luck!
    You forgot to tell her the importance of steak and bj's.
    FTM - BTB - KTF

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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptOldTimer View Post
    OPPS Now you have done it. Every member, with the exception of you, Harve and I, will be hitting on her now.
    Add me to that list! Evil you all are, taking advantage of a naive girlfriend...

    Quote Originally Posted by FDGF View Post
    Thanks for your advice! It's nice to hear from someone who has gone through the same situation and can speak from experience. It's great that you were able to be so supportive even when your husband was gone so much. That's one thing I'm a little nervous about and would love to hear how you handled being alone so much. I know the job requires a great deal of his attention and that he will need to focus, but does it ever slow down a bit? Were you ever able to spend time with him or plan a date night once in a while? The thought of being in a relationship with someone I never get to see is a bit unsettling. Do you have any suggestions for me? I expect him to be busy, and much of his time consumed, but I don't want things to get to the point where we just feel like room mates instead. This is all very new to me.
    For me, it wasn't so new because of how much he worked out of town prior to fire academy. BUT, I keep myself busy. Aside from 2 kids (with a 3rd on the way, so ya'll know we had SOMETHING of a sex life while he was in school!), I work full time. I also am an active sorority alumnae, and am an advisor to 2 college chapters. And when I have time and can keep my eyes open, I'm a TV and book junkie. Prior to the full time job and kid #2, I went to the gym and did lots of yoga classes too. Keep in mind that I'm 31 though, and you appear to be much younger. I'm not as high maintenance as I was when I was 22.

    I'm sorry, date night? What's that? You must have misunderstood. We're married with 2 kids. Date night consists of putting the kids to bed early, eating some take out food while watching TV or a movie, sex, and asleep by 10:30. lol.... but yes, once a month or every 6 weeks we were able to enjoy dinner out by ourselves. Usually Friday nights, since he liked to study on Saturdays. If you live together, keep yourself busy with a gym, volunteering, work, your home, get a pet, hang with your girlfriends and family, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    I always knew that my buddies at the FH would be there for my wife while I traveled for work.... so I never told em when I would be gone!

    This made me laugh!

    Quote Originally Posted by FDGF View Post
    Thanks for the tip! That's a good idea. Hopefully I can get to know some of the other wives and girlfriends. It would be great to have people I could talk to that understand what I'm going through. I'm hoping my boyfriend and I can figure out a way to prevent the stress of the job from coming between us and starting arguments. It's a very selfless job, and thus requires spouses and significant others to be more selfless than usual. Thanks again! Your advice is greatly appreciated.
    Absolutely! Hubby's class was broken down into squads of 5 guys. I now can call the other squad wives my friends, plus a few others. We don't get to see each other often, but we're all FB friends and chat about our husbands.

    My advice: don't pick fights, don't make him feel like he has to choose you over school/the job, keep in mind that the school-intensive period won't last forever. Holding a grudge and having animosity towards it all will do nothing but put him on the defensive. Be PROUD of your man and support him the best you can. Never have I been more proud of my husband (8 years married, 10 together) than a week ago at his graduation.

    In all seriousness .... if it's not working out, if you can't handle it, then be honest and break up on good terms. Give him that, at the very least. Not everyone is cut out to do this as a significant other, and that's ok. Post 9/11, right after we got engaged and moved in together (I was 22), my husband wanted to join the Navy. Nuh-uh, no way, over my dead body. I thought I was NOT cut out to be a Navy wife. We had recruiters at our apartment twice a week for 2 months. I never budged. Later in our relationship, after being married for a while, seeing sacrifices he made for me, and how miserable he was at his job, it was ME who suggested he start considering civil service in other ways since by then the proverbial Naval ship had sailed, and the guilt caught up with me. And now, he's happy with his job, I'm happy with my job, and most importantly, we're happy FOR each other and WITH each other.

    Sorry, that all got a little wordy.
    Last edited by IrishWife; 08-04-2011 at 08:46 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NY911Bowhunter View Post
    You forgot to tell her the importance of steak and bj's.
    You're right! That's like the cardinal rule.

    Make steak + BJs = a happy firefighter (or any man, really, they're quite simple) == happy wife/girlfriend because men are willing to do just about anything for their lady (like visiting his in-laws for a weekend without bitching) when they get regular steak and BJ night.
    Last edited by IrishWife; 08-04-2011 at 08:34 PM.

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    No shagging in the hosebeds!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by IrishLake View Post
    Add me to that list! Evil you all are, taking advantage of a naive girlfriend...



    For me, it wasn't so new because of how much he worked out of town prior to fire academy. BUT, I keep myself busy. Aside from 2 kids (with a 3rd on the way, so ya'll know we had SOMETHING of a sex life while he was in school!), I work full time. I also am an active sorority alumnae, and am an advisor to 2 college chapters. And when I have time and can keep my eyes open, I'm a TV and book junkie. Prior to the full time job and kid #2, I went to the gym and did lots of yoga classes too. Keep in mind that I'm 31 though, and you appear to be much younger. I'm not as high maintenance as I was when I was 22.

    I'm sorry, date night? What's that? You must have misunderstood. We're married with 2 kids. Date night consists of putting the kids to bed early, eating some take out food while watching TV or a movie, sex, and asleep by 10:30. lol.... but yes, once a month or every 6 weeks we were able to enjoy dinner out by ourselves. Usually Friday nights, since he liked to study on Saturdays. If you live together, keep yourself busy with a gym, volunteering, work, your home, get a pet, hang with your girlfriends and family, etc.


    This made me laugh!



    Absolutely! Hubby's class was broken down into squads of 5 guys. I now can call the other squad wives my friends, plus a few others. We don't get to see each other often, but we're all FB friends and chat about our husbands.

    My advice: don't pick fights, don't make him feel like he has to choose you over school/the job, keep in mind that the school-intensive period won't last forever. Holding a grudge and having animosity towards it all will do nothing but put him on the defensive. Be PROUD of your man and support him the best you can. Never have I been more proud of my husband (8 years married, 10 together) than a week ago at his graduation.

    In all seriousness .... if it's not working out, if you can't handle it, then be honest and break up on good terms. Give him that, at the very least. Not everyone is cut out to do this as a significant other, and that's ok. Post 9/11, right after we got engaged and moved in together (I was 22), my husband wanted to join the Navy. Nuh-uh, no way, over my dead body. I thought I was NOT cut out to be a Navy wife. We had recruiters at our apartment twice a week for 2 months. I never budged. Later in our relationship, after being married for a while, seeing sacrifices he made for me, and how miserable he was at his job, it was ME who suggested he start considering civil service in other ways since by then the proverbial Naval ship had sailed, and the guilt caught up with me. And now, he's happy with his job, I'm happy with my job, and most importantly, we're happy FOR each other and WITH each other.

    Sorry, that all got a little wordy.
    I love your tips for keeping busy. We're planning on joining a gym right away and plan to get a puppy once we get settled a bit. I figure between that and being a full time student, I'll have plenty to keep me occupied. We're also trying to plan ahead and come up with ways we can resolve arguments or diffuse them before they get too heated. I think that by practicing constructive ways to resolve an argument, we will be more prepared for future disagreements. We get along well and are both very excited about this new chapter we're entering. We just have a case of moving jitters and are not sure what to expect, but I'm sure once we get moved in and into a routine, we'll be able to adapt and adjust just fine. I will certainly have2 keep myself busy though. I'd love to find a gym that offers classes and I love to read. Hopefully I can also meet some of the other girlfriends and wives-it would be great to have some kind of support system. It's just difficult sometimes because there are always move wives than girlfriends my age and generally they have families and careers (hard to relate to a student in their 20's). But I'll take what I can get. I figure the more I get involved, the easier this will be. I'm so excited to see him live out his dream and am so proud of him for never giving up on it. I have got to say, all of this insight and advice has really put my mind at ease. There is great comfort in knowing that others have gone through what i'm about to and have made it through successfully. There is hope after all! haha

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    Quote Originally Posted by IrishLake View Post
    You're right! That's like the cardinal rule.

    Make steak + BJs = a happy firefighter (or any man, really, they're quite simple) == happy wife/girlfriend because men are willing to do just about anything for their lady (like visiting his in-laws for a weekend without bitching) when they get regular steak and BJ night.
    My boyfriend was sitting next to me when he read this and just looked over with a big goofy grin on his face. I think you made his day haha

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    I always knew that my buddies at the FH would be there for my wife while I traveled for work.... so I never told em when I would be gone!


    Yeah I know what you are saying. Don't tell your plans ahead of a trip. Also take care of business at home or another fireman will. It's call a Fill In Man!!
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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    There will be many times when he'll have to work on weekends, holidays, birthdays, family gatherings and other "special' days. Learn to deal with it and don't be a pain in the arse about it. This is his job, his career and you can't expect him to push it aside for every event that comes down the road. Fire departments only let a few guys off on holidays to maintain minimum manning, and that's it. The rest have to work. Also, if he comes home after a busy night getting about 3-4 hours sleep (half hour then a call, maybe an hour then another call and so on) it's not like a full 3-4 hours of restful sleep. If he gets home and wants to go to sleep, let him...even if you have plans for the day. Try to put things off a bit. If you don't let him sleep, he'll be a cranky duuche bag all day. Like me.

    PS...great pic

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    along the lines with everything that has already been posted. Give him alone time when he gets home from work if he wants it. Nothing is worse than busting your *** all night long and getting home to an overly attentive wife/girlfriend. Me personally I love my hour ride home from work it gives me time to myself after living with 9 men for the past 24 hours.

    realize that like it or not he will become part of a 2nd family. They are going to have inside jokes between each other that you will not understand. They are going to talk about stuff that you will not understand a word of the conversation. Jokes and stories that they find funny you will not.

    My wife and I have been married for 5 years been together for 10 years. She knows what i do and knows that like it or not i have certain obligations to my career. Thats life, balancing personal and career obligations. She knows that i have no control over working on christmas, birthdays, etc. She knows that my job is stressful and physically demanding and when i come home I need to sleep and recharge my batteries.

    On the flip side I know that she could careless about the gossip in the firehouse. She could careless if I went on 1 call or 20 calls at work yesterday. She doesnt want to hear about me running into a "burning building" yesterday. It is just not her thing.

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