As long as it is a career position, there should not be an issue. You will get enough excitement at your place of employment and all your off time can be given to family related functions. Where you run into problems is when you get "ate up" with the whole "jolly vollie" syndrome and start picking the FD over the wife and fam. I don't care what some may or may not say about dedication to his fellow citizen, you start leaving your wife and kids before or during big family events(holidays, birthday parties, graduations..etc,etc) there is going to be problems.
I got a very cool wife.(She actually gets a little "excited" when I smell like a fire. It's awesome.) However, her time with me is her time with me, no excuses or exceptions. I've been with her close to 15 years (just as long as the FD) and I couldn't be happier.
Ok; I am on both sides of the equation.
My Husband was a VFF before we were married. I didn't quite get the idea of charging off and working your axe off for little appreciation. I wasn't thrilled with the notion of him gleefully putting his life on the line or setting himself up for (sometimes) emotional heartaches on the Rescue Squad.
But I love him and he wanted to do it. All I asked was that he keep an eye on the danger level and promise to try and back out (yeah, right:rolleyes: ) if it got too nasty. He's been at it for 15+ years.
There were times when he would come home freezing in the middle of winter and I would roll over and cling to him to try and warm him up. Or listen to him as he vented about something stupid that happened, the general stupidity of a certain person, or the horrible things that he had just seen. At last, with love and support, he would drift off to sleep and I would end up awake with my mind going at 100 miles an hour and horrible visions in my head.
I love him but I also learned that his dedication to "the job" is just one more indication of what a special guy I have. And he is going to take care of his family come heck or high water.
I was approached to become a VFF by his chief. I thought ME???
Eventually I did. I love it. And now I get it completely.
I don't lay awake at nights wondering what he is doing and stressing about things. I know who he is with and how they take care of each other.
I have come home from calls to find him waiting up for me. He has learned what that is all about; to be the one sitting at home waiting.
The fire service has actually improved what was already a good marriage. But it took willingness for each to support the other as they found their way.
If that is not happening...well...I'm not going to say it. You know what to do; it just sucks sometimes to have to do it.
I hope this helps.
Sounds like you have the best of both worlds. :D Great to here someone cares in this day and age. Hope you have many more great yrs together.
What do you mean by that?
Originally Posted by kldugas412
Iíll explain, like yourself we are very lucky to have a caring loved one at home that worries about us when we are gone. I was referring to all of the negative posts. I will not mention names, as I do not want to have a ****ing contest on the computer.
It goes in hand that ROOK was not in a Dept. but supported her husband in times of need. Bye doing so she found that she too loved the fire service. Maybe Just one Wife or Husband of a FF that has doubts of the career that there spouse has chosen or wants to choose. Will read this post and it will help them understand how caring the Fire Service is.
This post should not be oh well just dump the B!$ch and get on with your career.
I also understand that this is an open post and everyone is entitled to his or her own opinions. That is why I do not like to debate issues on this these forums. I will say my .02 and let it be at that.
What I will do is complement those that I feel have the same views as my self. I will also express my gratitude to those who from their experiences have someing to teach. I believe we all are destine to fail if we do not learn from our Brothers and Sisters that have come before us and defined this Fire Service, as we know it today.
P.S. I too know what you mean, ďher time with me is her time with me, no excuses or exceptions.Ē
I too set time aside with my family also. Do not get me wrong sometimes it is the second hardest thing I have to do (Watch the engine leave for a hot call and not go to it because I have promised to do something with them, set time aside for my wife or little girl.)
The hardest thing I have to do is leave them to go to work (Itís not in the fire service) I have to sleep away from home for 14-21 days at a time.:eek: In return I get 14-21 off.:D
Have you sat down and talked to her about it and what scares her?
KLD..... with that type of work schedule you must be in the oil business. Regardless, good post and I copy you lemma-charlie.
PaddieGrunt....You're from the Paintball Capital of the world!
Tell her to-bad, I told my wife she can like it or leave it, 8 years later, she's still here and I still have the best job in the world. We are both very happy, and I don't tell her everything that happens on sceene.
just wanted to thank BCLepore;791908 and his wife for the insight. i realy enjoyed it. thanks
I wanted to chime in and say that I am from the same line of thought as ROOK. My husband talked to me about joining the volunteer dept 6 years ago when I was pregnant with our (1st and only) child. I had a hard time understanding (especially with pregnancy emotions), but we talked about it A LOT. He explained exactly why he wanted to do it and what it meant to him. I love him enough to know how important it was to him, and I knew that deep down he would resent me if I didn't give him my blessing to do it. I have watched him become a very dedicated firefighter that loves what he does. Did it bother me, when in the middle of my baby shower, he and our child's godfather rushed out for a fire when all my family was there? A little. But watching how proud he was and the friends he (and I) made was so worth it.
As time went on, I started doing more with the department, helping at fundraisers, and with a push from some of the other guys on the department, I joined last summer, and I finished my FF1 certification class in January of this year. It has become our 2nd family. We have made a lot of friends with the guys on the department and they adore our son and treat me great (I am the only woman firefighter on the dept).
Wanted to give another story from the woman's side. And all of you that say to just ditch her and get another woman, hope you enjoy being old and alone. I have seen it many times.... Nothing sexy about a middle aged bald man thinking young chicks still dig him just because he's a fireman.
I think we can all understand her fears of you becoming a firefighter, there are inherent risks, whether they be fears of injury/death or disease. The important thing for her to know is the good that comes out of the job and the training that you put into it to be sure you come home every day. She doesn't need to know the gory details, but I bet it would help if you told her bits here and there so she knows what you do, but doesn't have to hear the dangers.
I am the woman in the equation here, and I will admit that my Ex was not comfortable with me putting my life into this career and we eventually split before I was hired. It was a blessing in disguise because I was then able to apply to other cities and not worry about moving a family. I have parents who worry a great deal, but I'm careful to tell them certain stories, and am always sure to point out the safety of the job and ensure them that things are not always as dangerous as they appear (it seems to work.. lol).
Sometimes the spouse just needs reassurance that you will be okay, that you will be well trained, that you will have brothers/sisters around you to help ensure your safety, that you are not alone in this job, that you will be part of a family bigger than could ever be imagined, that you (and she) will have support also beyond imaginable, and that this will be a part of your (and her) life. It's not just a job, you don't choose it, it chooses you. You would kick your *** for the rest of your life if you chose a woman who was not supportive over this career...
She's the one who is selfish. What we do is the most selfless thing anyone can. Find a new girlfriend.
Originally Posted by hoosierdaddy
I wanted to add to my post above that there is a chance that she won't understand no matter what you do, and the above poster, although harsh, is right then that she is the one being selfish. The point of my earlier post is that you should try hard to explain it to her and talk about how important it is to you if you really love her. I don't think you should just ditch any woman that doesn't like you being a fireman right off the bat though without giving it a little time. If she does truly love you, she will come around. If not, then, well, you know that this isn't the only thing she will try to hold you back from.
Agreed - Dump her - try hooters
I want to thank everyone for their advice...even those I don't necessarily agree with. She's not just my girlfriend...we're getting married in August. I could agree if I already were a firefighter and she didn't like it; we'd have to break up. But I wondered if I was being selfish trying to become a firefighter after I'm married. Thanks again everyone.
I hope things work out for you both. Maybe have her talk with some other wives and see their feelings and views. From what I have heard most wives/husbands' fears subside over time. Coming home at the end of each shift is great re-enforcement that there are more safeties in place than dangers.
Originally Posted by hoosierdaddy
Best of luck to you and forge on with your goals, all of them... things have a funny way of working out.