Here's a couple of things that we have done that have helped us.....
So when the bulk of your relationship is just communication, you have to get that RIGHT. The old book Men are from Mars Women are from Venus and many others like it, point out the communication style differences between men and women. So when everybody tells you "Communicate" yadada... thats great, but make sure you are doing it in a way that works well for both of you. It still drives me batty when he thinks I can read his mind on the details of a situation and I have to draw them out one by one. But when I shared with him, in a non threating or accusatory way, that it was fustrating to me and then once or twice more (again watch that ol'tone when you do it) (They can be such babies can't they? LOL) Once I could give him examples of specificly what he was doing, it got better.
Understand that time differences are going to be a pain in the butt. And that often one of you isn't in a place to chat when the other is. Making phone dates can help.
Intimacy- OK try to have a healthy love life when your man is gone what feels like way to much. This again is where that Communication thing comes in. My guy and I aren't really into the whole "phone sex' thing. But we did recently discover that we like to write erotic stories for each other.
And love letters.....send him on the road with paper, envelopes and stamps. Point out he has lots of hours when required to be down. Again 'happy mail' for you and he doesn't have to remember to shave or dress up to please you for this one. They are helpful to pull out and reread after a phone fight. So never pitch them.....even when you are mad.
If it's a clear night and the moon is full we go outside and talk on the phone and watch it together. It helps knowing we are sharing this.
He sends lots of post cards home to my 13 year old son who he is crazy about. It's always fun for both of us to see what we call "Happy Mail".
He puts forth an enourmous amount of effort to make me feel cherished and appreciated.
We have been married 81 days and have only spent 13 of those actually together but I know in my heart he will always treat me like this. So I choose to support him while he drives. We argreed together that we would reeveluate this life choice at the end of two years and see if it is working for us as a family.
We have a cell phone bill (no long distance charges etc) that would rival most teenagers for minutes and texts. We share even the smallest and goofiest details of our lives even though we are busy to stay connected into each others lives. Especially funny bumper stickers.
Get the "Book of Questions" or "If'. All they are, are books of conversation starting questions. There are times that you don't want to get off the phone but flat have run out of things to say.
Be careful that your conversations don't become just full of complaints about your life/day. We caught ourselves doing that a few weeks ago and redirected that quickly after about a week. We all need to vent and the other needs to be understanding and supportive. But please.....just how many different times do I have to hear about the weather where he is or does he really want to know how I am loosing the battle with the dreadful war on the weeds in the front yard or what a pill my mom can be. Keep those conversation balanced.
Make your commitment to your friends huge. One time I had a long standing even out with the girls the second night he was to be home. I kept that date and the respected me hugely for it. And now I know that they will be there for me in a pinch. It shows him to that he should respect you. Point out that if I can keep my commitments to my loved ones and friends, I can keep my commintment to him.
How's this for the love of your life to do. 2 hours before leaving to go to Dallas to train for the new company "ask you to marry him" then be gone for 9 weeks. Somehow I still said yes. How about planning your wedding for the day after Christmas because most all of both your families will be there and not sure till the very last minute if the weather and the company will make sure he'll be home.
How about learning that you are stronger than you thought you could be. We hadn't been dating but 6 or so months when after a bad day at work he up and went and signed up to go to driving school. I let him have a few days of excitement and then broke up with him. Told him I was hurt that after talking about making a long term life together that he hadn't talked about this with me. (He had already done his research about schools before we met) So I told him I didn't want to be married to a trucker and though I loved him that was not the life I had imagined for myself. A wise friend pointed something out that turned my life around in that moment. He said "You are making this decision from a place of fear and if you don't at least try you will alwasy regret it". My heart knew it was true and I went home and we made up and I have signed on for a two year commintment to the job (putting up with it OTT) and a life time to my man.
Seek out other trucker wives. But make sure they are not 'all about the complaining'. My man has found that, for as outgoing and friendly guy that he is, he doesn't choose to spend all that much time in the drivers lounges because of the negative energy put out there by the other drivers. Lots of griping going on there. Just because another driver wife can relate doesn't mean she will make the best of supportive friends.
Give yourself permission to be lonely. At first I felt shameful, like I wasn't being supportive enough. But I learned that I don't have to tell him all about it everytime it hits me. Sometimes yes.....marriages need to be supportive. But often he jsut feels guilty and then doesn't want to call a lot and you get more lonely. And that I don't have to swim in it everytime it hits me. But let yourself know it is a legit feeling. It's how you handle it and what you do with it that has the power.
You know how you have gone on that diet before a friends wedding? Somehow having a specific date creates a window that you motivated. I do that with goals. Things I want to be able to say "I did this!" beofre he gets home next time. Ok so you might not always know the exacte date he'll be home( we had been told every 3 to 5 weeks. First go round he was gone 10) But I have set myself some goals that are actaully easier for me to do without him around. This week I am on day 4 of 5 of not eating out. (Lost 3 lbs)o
Dang, in rereading this post I realize that one of those goals could be to write a novel. Hope some of these ideas help you.
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