Talk

Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Married to firefighter, so lonely

(41 Posts)
Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 15:57:02

Hello sad
Just posting here for some kind words rather than advice I think but any will do.
My DH is a firefighter and he is mostly always on call.
I am pregnant and I long for weekends together doing fun things.
We had something planned today that I was really looking forward to.
His beeper went off and he didnt come back for 4 hours.
I was by then crying and in bed.
We live in the middle of nowhere and I dont drive yet.
When he came home he was all ok lets go now. But by then we had missed our reservation and for me the day was spoiled.
We argued and I said that I am fed up of being second to this job. He gets paid peanuts and I earn more.
It is not his fault that firefighter salaries are rubbish if you look at the commitment they take on.
But it is always like this. We can never do anything. This pregnancy has been lonely, sad, and I can see myself taking care of the house and baby on my own.
Sometimes I wonder if I should leave.
I left the house and he was sad I didnt want him coming with me. I am now sitting on the forest floor wondering what I am bringing this bubba into sad

Muser54321 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:02:02

If I were you I'd take driving lessons while you still can, or take lessons with the baby in the back seat.

I found myself isolated (socially and economically) with a man who wasn't there for me (emotionally, practically, financially) and I ended up with very few options which increased my dependency on him and increased his lack of respect for me.

So........ you can bring your baby in to a World that you have a part in shaping. Don't be depressed. Just know that although things might be harder they're not impossible and you can take one very pro-active step right now.

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:09:02

Thanks for you message Muser, I appreciate it.
I have been taking driving lessons for 10 months but keep failing my test...
I have a full time job (with a long commute) and taking maternity leave for a year.
He says he is working harder (true, he actually has 2 jobs) for us, for the baby.
But I wonder whether it is worth the price we are paying.
I am very unhappy. I am out of the house for 12 hours a day and weekend are me on my own or both at home attached to his beeper.
I feel awful that I am unable to pass the test and I dont have friends here, only in London where I work (far away)
sad
Thank you for the advice and sharing flowers

LottieL Sun 16-Oct-16 16:09:10

I'm sorry you feel that way but I wonder if you are expecting too much? Was he a firefighter when you got together?
It's the same across a whole section of different sectors of employment - sometimes you are expected to drop what you are doing and head to work, it's not nice but it honestly does happen. My husband works in catering and starts around 9am to 3pm, then he returns at 5pm until 10pm on his working days. We are lucky in that recently he's managed to secure weekends but before this that is what he'd work Saturdays and Sundays. It's not easy but you learn to rely on yourself for fun; you could try taking up a hobby or having something that you sincerely enjoy doing that you could spend your time with rather than wallowing over lost time.
When your husband arrived home and said that you could then go out you should have! He can't control getting called into work but you can control how you react to it, and going to bed to cry and staying there ruined the day for you.
If it's too much for you then you need to be honest with your husband and tell him that you can't go on like this, and maybe he'll look for other work but if he loves his work (I suspect he does if he's paid peanuts but does it anyway) you will have to decide if you want to continue with this or not, but for lots of people across the world this is the norm and they make it work by being proactive and finding ways of keeping themselves occupied too. You should never rely on anyone to be your sole provider of entertainment - or of anything really.

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:17:59

Lottie thank you for your message. He was a firefighter when we met but his rota was different, but last year or so, with government cuts, things have changed a lot and they are on call every evening and weekends. They are also covering for the lack of ambulance service so more calls.
Problem is that I moved to his house and I still cant drive. Very hard to meet people and when I know he is busy I go to London, but with the beeper he can disappear at the last second even if we had plans sad
I am usually very independent but I hoped that getting married meant to have some time with him, particularly expecting the bubba.
You say some very wise words and I will take them on board.
I think you are right in saying I need to make a decision too.
I didnt go with him because I was truly upset. Today was the anniversary of my dad's death and I had plan beautiful things to commemorate, then I had to cancel last minute and all I could do was cry.

Xuli Sun 16-Oct-16 16:19:57

I'm married to a police officer so I understand a lot of what you are saying, though I know the last minute calls are less than they probably are for a fireman.

You have to decide what you want.

He does this job. Has he been doing it for a while? Is it that pregnancy has changed your outlook because it is harder for you to do things, and you feel more lonely and isolated, and you are worried about what will happen when the baby is here?

It's an essential job. It is also, like the police, a pretty rubbish job sometimes. It has a big effect on family life.

IMHO you have to decide whether a) you love him and want to be with him, in which case you have to accept that this is his job and this is the effect it has on your life, or b) you really can't take it anymore, in which case there isn't much option but to either leave him or insist he leaves his job, with all the knock on effects that has.

If you decide you want to be with him, you have to accept it. It's fine to feel down about it, we all do and I know I certainly struggled with a young baby and DH doing shift work. But you can't take it out on him because he can't change the nature of his job, bar leaving it. Taking it out on him just increases the resentment for everyone.

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:25:27

Xuli thank you so much. Yes, to so many of your questions.
The pregnancy has changed something.
And I imagine you too will have some coping mechanism with your DH in a job that involves a risk as well, that is also a worry. I forgot to mention that.
Yes I love him very much.
But you are right, I dont know if I can deal with his job anymore.
And I take it out on him, I do.
Thank you so much, you have given me a lot to think about.

Pootlebug Sun 16-Oct-16 16:25:55

Is it just his job that is making you feel like this?

You say you have moved to his house, in the middle of nowhere, far from your friends. Is there any scope to move nearer to your friends and to somewhere less in the middle of nowhere? I suspect his shifts wouldn't be so bad if you were closer to other support network.

HuskyLover1 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:29:01

That doesn't sound right!

I am also married to someone in the Emergency Services and he is NEVER on call, on his days off. My Ex BIL is a fireman, also NEVER on call on the 4 days off.

This just doesn't sound right to me, whatsoever. This would be seriously contravening employment law/conditions.

HuskyLover1 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:30:59

And, I have never heard of firemen covering for Ambulance service (I know a paramedic).

Leviticus Sun 16-Oct-16 16:33:59

I mean this as kindly as possible but you need to try to get a grip.

You're hormonal and there's nothing wrong with wishing he were home more but he's doing a worthwhile job to provide for you all.

And yes, learn to drive.

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:34:12

Thanks pootle. Unfortunately his main job is kind of linked to this area so moving not an option.
Husky your ex BIL was probably then a full time firefighter. My DH has a full time job an on top is a retained firefighter.
There were strikes and lots of union involvement last year when they changed rotas. Now he covers evenings and weekends. He gets some hours off a week but let me explain:
Today he was off from 11 to 17. Because his beeper went off at 9:30 and was sent to a very long job he didnt come back until almost 14.
Employment law is tricky here.
He didnt strike last year because he knew if he did there wouldnt be a cover for the community. It is hard

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:35:44

Husky these are not things people know or government want people to know. But yes, because they can get there before the ambulance they are sent there. Then ambulance arrives. It happens a lot actually here.

Muser54321 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:37:23

Don't know where you are but in Ireland, Firemen would be paramedics /EMTs as well

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:37:58

Leviticus as I said I have been trying to learn for 10 months and keep failing my test.
And I am not only grieving for my dad but I also have a history of metal health, so get a grip is not really helping.

Sorry I shouldnt have posted here. I will go away and ask MN to delete.

Thanks everyone

Evergreen17 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:38:55

Thanks Muser, I was starting to think husky was implying I was making it up

HuskyLover1 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:43:50

No, not at all Evergreen, I was a bit worried that he was perhaps not being truthful with you about the "on call" thing. Worried there could be OW. But I see your update now, and that he is not a FT fireman.

Could you afford for him to quit? It sounds as though it's far too intrusive on family life. And you will require much more support when baby arrives. Although I realise this may be a passion for him.

HuskyLover1 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:46:22

And YY to not finishing on time, if a big job comes in sad

I know all too well, how that feels.

Elderflower07 Sun 16-Oct-16 16:59:30

Ah ok! Thanks husky!
No he is very honest, it is just this new rotas they have and the retained thing.
I am feeling really upset atm and I suffer from anxiety so I think I need to step away from MN for a bit

Thank you so much everyone flowersflowers

leccybill Sun 16-Oct-16 17:09:24

Whats his other job? Can he not drop that and be a firefighter full time?
BIL is a firefighter and he has runs of 18 days off at a time.

BreatheDeep Sun 16-Oct-16 17:29:36

My husband is a police officer. It is frustrating not having 'normal' hours together like everyone else. But unfortunately it's just something you accept or you don't (which would mean you'd have to end the relationship or he'd have to change jobs). It's really not fair to make him feel bad or guilty over something he has no control over.

Can you talk to him about how it's making you feel? Maybe he can go full-time in which his hours would be in a shift pattern rather than on call so much. Or can he drop the fire officer job and do something else? Of course if he doesn't want to do those things I'm not sure there is much you can do other than improve your social life somehow so you have other people to spend time with when he's working. That's what I do at weekends when DH is working - see family and friends and keep myself busy.

I know that the hours these jobs work are one of the biggest factors in breakdown of relationships.

Normandy Sun 16-Oct-16 17:32:12

Partnered with a cop.

When I get frustrated about having our plans shot, I think of the empathy I feel for the people he is helping, because almost certainly they need him then more than I do.

Leviticus Sun 16-Oct-16 17:35:30

Fair enough. As I said, it was not meant unkindly.

UnicornPee Sun 16-Oct-16 18:19:40

I am in a similar situation.
My OH works 100 miles away running a hotel. He stays there 4/5 nights a week and his days off are week days when I'm at work.
Every weekend I SHIT to the point I'm depressed. We have 2 kids who are different ages so they don't like doing the same things and just fight. So I stay in ALL weekend.

I have no solution for you but just a hand hold xx

screweduppotatoe Sun 16-Oct-16 18:24:32

I think it all depends on the county or station they're with. My husband is a firefighter for GMFR and he works two days, two nights then four off. During his days off he isn't on call. I do have a friend who is based at a different station and he is on call during his days on pattern, but he still has his allocated days off, where he would not be called upon.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now