New Trucker's Wife & about to go on the road with him

by Randi Stewart
(Hawthorne, FL USA)

Hello all -

My husband started training in January and finally got his company truck last week. His first time gone was extremely rough on the both of us. He was gone from home the first time for 6 1/2 weeks. The second time he was gone for 5 weeks and this past time he was gone for 5 1/2 weeks.

I am very excited for him to finally be done with his training and receiving his truck. While being home with the children has been very hard with him being gone, we are finally getting into a routine. And now school has ended so we have to find a new routine!!

I have to say, reading some of the posts on here disturb me a little. Very negative it seems. My husband and I have been married for five years now, we each have children from previous marriages.

We went into this marriage knowing that sometimes things don't work out and ready to be completely open with each other. It has worked and we are still going strong. So when he said he wanted to do OTR trucking I supported him whole heartedly, I wasn't entirely happy about it but I knew he needed a change and I lost my job so we needed something to help financially.

Like I said, it was extremely hard at first, I cried most nights and had many panic attacks about us being apart for long periods of time as we had never done that before and I'm a realist and know sometimes absence doesn't make the heart grow fonder. Luckily in our case it made us appreciate each other so much more. I have an amazing man who takes such good care of his family.

Now with the kids being out of school we have decided that the next time he makes it home that I will go on the road a few weeks with him. I'm excited and terrified all at the same time. I'm not sure how being in a truck for 4-5 weeks is going to go. What do I need to pack? Can we really sleep in that twin xl bunk every night comfortably?

Does anyone have any suggestions or tips on what I can expect? What I should make sure to bring? And then any tips on life as a happily married truckers wife?? I appreciate any help I can get.

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Jun 06, 2014
Lots of luck to you! NEW
by: 3 years of living in a truck

Hi Randi,

Being the wife of an over the road truck driver is extremely tough. It's very hard on even the strongest marriages and makes having any type of relationship or family life very difficult. The person that you married goes from being a PARTICIPANT IN, and A PART OF the family, to becoming merely an occasional visitor. In the early stages of his new "lifestyle" there will be LOTS of tears, as you've already been finding out. After living this life for too many years though those tears can turn into resentment for many, myself included. For many, family comes 2nd, NOT 1st. ALL that matters is that load, or the next one. The dispatchers will tell them that THEY are basically God, and they are all that matters while the driver is in the truck, and that family and life have to be put ASIDE. It's my understanding that a driver does NOT enlist? I've always had the FAMILY FIRST mentality.

I've taken a few weeks here and there in the early years to go out with my husband and it can be somewhat fun. Over the years he's had local jobs in between the OTR (and always made much MORE money local). Our children are all grown now and he was wanting to go OTR again. But its very hard to support 2 households (the truck is its own household) on otr pay so for the last 3 years we've been LIVING in this stupid truck which is NOT FUN! Not to me anyways. The life of a vagabond has NEVER been for me! Once the "fun" wore off (about 2-3 weeks) it hit me one day "He LEFT us for THIS?" And the money that SEEMED to be decent at first, ended up actually being HORRIBLE when you look at ALL the hours involved. The mileage driver ONLY makes money while they're driving but there is more to WORKING than JUST the driving. When you do the math and calculate the pay divided by actual hours worked it's barely minimum wage! It's SLAVE LABOR. And most definitely NOT worth giving up one's life, relationship, and family for. Everyday it goes through my mind "he GAVE UP his life, his family, our relationship, FOR THIS?"

As for you're going on the road and what to bring: I'd highly suggest a paint bucket with a tight lid and trash bags to line it as that will most likely become your "toilet". And lots of baby wipes, as those will come in handy when you don't have time to stop and shower or are sitting in a customer's yard for the 10 hour break and cannot shower. Hopefully your husband and his company are different from most others and YOU WILL be able to stop and use a real bathroom and can shower daily. For me this is the most humiliating, demoralizing, disgusting, and degrading thing I have to go through while "living" in a stupid truck.

As for trying to sleep together in the twin sized bed, good luck! Some people are able to do that and others are not. We don't/can't. But we've also been sleeping ALONE for 16 out of 23 years. I didn't get "married" to be, and to have to sleep ALONE!

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