This will take some getting used to

by Julie Tanner
(Tooele, Utah)

I am really new to this. My husband started driving last week. He left Sunday night and was back Friday morning. Then he left again this Sunday but he doesn't know when he will get to come home again.

It's hard having him gone like this because I am used to him being home all the time. You see, he was a stay at home dad while I went to work and supported us. Well I was laid off in February and jobs are hard to come by these days. So he decided to go into truck driving, which he did several years ago before we met, because there is a high demand for truck drivers and potential to make good money.

Having him gone most of the time is hard enough but not knowing when I will get to see him again is the worst. I know this is just as hard on him and I worry about him constantly. Monday night they left for Montana and I didn't hear from him again until this morning. Turns out he didn't have cell phone service where they went so he couldn't call or send me a text message. Needles to say I didn't sleep much last night because all I could do was worry that something bad had happened. I try not to cry but last night was just too much.

I wish I would have been better prepared for this. I had no idea it would be like this! I also figured out I need to learn how to do a few things around the house that he would normally do. For instance, a few hours after he left on Sunday the bathtub faucet started leaking really bad. I had to learn how to shut off the water and take it apart to see what the problem was. Just little things like that you don't think about until they happen. He spoiled me and took care of a lot of things and now I am faced with the fact that he won't be here to take care of them anymore. When he is home he is way too tired to do anything so I need to start learning new things.

I am sure things will get easier with time but until then I will do my best to hold it together and take care of the house and car. I just wish there were resources out there for truckers wives. Something to help us be prepared and to know what to expect. The not knowing is the hardest part. The only thing that keeps me going is my love for him and the appreciation I have for what he is doing for us. We have a wonderful marriage and I know we will make it through this, I just wish it were easier.

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Mar 06, 2014
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It's been 6 months now and it isn't getting easier! NEW
by: Julie

I thought after a while it would be easier to deal with my husband being gone all the time, but it's not. I cry every time he leaves and I have a hard time sleeping when he is gone. He works for a better company now and is making pretty good money but I wonder if the money is worth all of this? I miss him so much and I am so lonely. He gets to come home once a week but it is usually for one day, and when he is home he is too tired to do anything! Another thing that really irritates me is he hardly calls me anymore. He drives team now so when he isn't driving he is busy with other things or trying to sleep. How can we do this with very little communication? I am trying to stay positive but it is extremely difficult when my whole life has been turned upside down. I wish he would have picked a different career. I know one thing, if he was a truck driver when I met him I wouldn't have married him.

Oct 24, 2013
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Same Boat NEW
by: Jenifer

Julie, sounds like same thing here, I am impressed you hold back cause I go on a tirade. Even today he upset me and now I am sending his calls to voice mail, (that anger again LOL). My personal e-mail is JeniferLBailey.JLB@gmail.com if you want to PM me. Will send you my number on e-mail if so. He said all the same crapola about it getting better and great and wonderful. I will say this, this was the first GOOD paycheck and that makes it easier. Before I was like, well damn we are apart and I am alone for this!!?? After this past week I felt more like, ok, this is a little more justifiable for being apart, and that was just because I could finally catch the rent up and get current!

Oct 24, 2013
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I know what you mean Jennifer! NEW
by: Julie

I am lucky to talk to my husband once a week now. He is either driving, sleeping, or doing work related stuff. He is almost done with training and will soon be in his own truck. He says it will get better once he has his own truck because he will have more time to talk to me but I don't know if I believe him. The phone calls mostly consist of where he's been, what he is doing, or anything to do with him and his job. He never asks how I am doing or how things are at home. I am afraid to talk to him about any of this because a few weeks ago we had a huge fight. He freaked out on me bad because I told him I didn't like this. We have NEVER had a fight like that and it scared me so bad that now I don't dare to talk to him about how I feel or what we can do to get through this. I don't know if I can do this much more. We'll see...

Oct 17, 2013
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Angry NEW
by: Jenifer

I feel the same way but I am angry (not much of one to do sad LOL). The short calls are the worst and seems there are always excuses. After 7 months I still haven't adjusted much. The reasons you listed and a lot of others make me feel like he's actually getting a break, not dealing with the leaky sink, or the kids, or the day to day life. I hate to be angry I do but when I am telling him I had to go to the ER with ALL the kids because the 8 month old had a high temp and he cuts me off with, "I will call you later, I am at the consignees" I don't feel very important or like the kids are either. He will spend 30 minutes telling me a in-full description of how a parking lot is designed and he navigated it but cannot make 30 minutes to simply listen to my day? I know it sounds so selfish and I hate that but I swear if the kids school grades get interrupted to discuss how hard a left turn in PA was or how awful the potholes to WI are I will scream!!

Sep 23, 2013
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Resources for trucker wives
by: Hervy

Awesome Feedback, thanks Nancy, Melisa, and Balliet for showing your compassion and support to Julie.

Nancy, I would love to know the driver trainer and trucking company that did that for you guys so that I can mention him in a video. He really deserves a shout out for that.

As far as the resources that would have made you aware of what to expect, I probably don't do a good job of promoting it because I always thing that someone else will read it and promote it for me because it is that good....lol :-0) but......

There are several resources out there that would have forced you to consider the exact things that you mention. My in book format, in CD format, and on these pages here, Impact of Trucking on the Family You will see a link from that page to several pages that I have written about the subject.

There is also a trucker wife chat page here (which may have not worked recently until today :-) I fixed it after discovering it had developed a bug) Trucker wives forums and chat

So if you would do me a favor and promote any or all of these resources it would help other women and truckers. You will discover that I talk about much more than what you have discussed thus far.

What I also do is discourage cheating by pointing out why it's dumb (and can't end well)and encourage nurturing the relationship in advance in addition to ways for improving communication and using the trucking lifestyle as a tool for growth in the relationship.

Not only that, I talk about some of the useful ways to spend your free time. Including but not limited to
making money online so that if he wants to come off the road you actually have something in place that would make that transition possible.

So many things are here. However, you have to navigate around the site. Spend time reading some of this stuff here but at the end of the day, you have to allow yourself the freedom to focus on other things if you want to stop thinking about what you are going through right now.

Also keep in mind, what is happening right now is temporary Julie. Once he gets our of training, his time will be a little better.

Later ladies,
Hervy


Sep 23, 2013
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You are not alone
by: Anonymous

I think one of the things I have learned over my time as a trucker's wife is that I have to walk a bit of a fine line with my husband. He still wants to feel needed, but doesn't want me to be needy.

I'm sure that distinction is different for every person. I'm a fairly independent person, so sometimes I need to keep it in mind that he needs to know that I can be without him, but I'd rather not be.

We haven't been at this for long (though my husband drove truck for years before we were together.)

The not knowing is difficult- sometimes what is more difficult is switching different aspects of your life when he is home. The one thing I think the not knowing does is it forces you not to take any time you spend with your husband for granted.

That doesn't mean every moment spent together has to be romantic or entertaining or perfect- but it does mean that time is precious. Maybe cleaning the house can wait or taking a day off of work to spend time together in your pajamas is worth it.

I know we choose this life, but like parenting, I don't think anyone has a true idea of what it is like until you live it.

I would be all for joining or starting a support group if there already isn't one out there.

Sep 20, 2013
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Feeling your pain
by: Melisa

I understand what you're going through! My fiance started driving truck this past spring. We were in a similar situation in which I was the breadwinner and he was the stay at home.

We wanted a better life, trucking is offering it to us. It does get hard and I get lost sometimes on my days off, but I have learned to do things for myself that if he were home everyday I might not have.

I spend more time with my kids and studying for my nursing exam. We were lucky that when Ian went to trucking school his instructors brought the families in and went through things we could expect(both sides) and even talked to our kids and explained to them it wouldn't always be easy.

All in all we're adjusting pretty well to being tethered by a phone.

Sep 19, 2013
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Calls are so fast
by: Nancy

Yes, definitely the phone calls are brief!!!! The fact that they are with their trainers and can't abuse making phone calls is hard!!

They are always on the run! Plus the trainer he is with does not even make calls sooo he has to sneak a call.

When a whole day passes and I don't hear from him, I start to panic and my anxiety starts to kick in, and then I just get a quick text gn and it' sucks bad!!! But I'm glad I'm able to vent with someone who understands...

Sep 19, 2013
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Thank you ladies!
by: Julie

Nancy, I have tried like hell not to cry but these last few days I can't seem to stop!

Balliet, it is amazing what you can do, isn't it? I never thought I would be able to fix a leak but it is fixed!

We should organize something because this is a really big adjustment and there is no transition at all. What makes it even worse is the fact that I don't get to talk to him much. Last night I got to talk to him for 2 minutes and 22 seconds before he had to go because they were leaving.

He is either driving, sleeping, going over training stuff, or something that keeps him too busy to keep in touch. Today he called and we talked for a few more minutes and then he had to run.


Sep 19, 2013
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I soooo understand u!!!
by: Nancy

I completely understand what u are going thru.... My husband is on his last two weeks of training and I just can't get used to it.

Him leaving every week is like him leaving the first day for me. You are exactly right about how there needs to be more resources for wives so that we can have an easy transition!!!

We need to organize something where we can write to each other when we start feeling sad or need someone to talk too, because it's really hard!!! I still cry.... Sooooo I'm sooo there with you... Please know your not alone...

Sincerely
Nancy

Sep 19, 2013
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same here
by: Balliet

I feel you, not knowing is the hardest part. My husband started in March of this year. At first he was gone little over two months and we had no idea when he would be home till he was here.

He also left just so he could have a job, I do work full time, he was seasonal here and there was no full time work for him. This time around he will also be gone for two months or so.

Stay strong if there's a will there's a way. I have so how found ways to fix I never thought in my wildest dreams I would be able to on my own. Good luck.

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