This week on the show (ep. 62), we're talking about finding ways to adjust our hearts and attitudes when your husband works long hours. No matter if it's one night a week or a month of travel, here are some tips to help you love your husband well and avoid becoming angry or bitter with him or your situation.
Ever since we've been married my husband has worked long hours. I don't know why I've ever expected it to change, but I suppose there has always been this hope in me that it would. To give perspective (and I suppose some credibility as to why I'm writing this post), my husband typically works 12 hour days, and though he is supposed to have every other Friday off, he works them about half the time and at times, he is unexpectedly called in on the weekends or in the middle of the night. He also goes through long seasons once or twice a year, working 12-15 hour days (or nights) for anywhere from 30-90 days straight (yes, even weekends), although this past year they introduced "Fatigue Days," where it became a requirement that they give the employees every 14th day off. (I'll be honest, I've always wondered how this could be legal.)
I know there are a lot of professions that require husbands to work long hours and I am not the only mother preparing and eating dinner with the kids by myself. But it can feel like a very lonely road sometimes and it can be tough to know how to talk about it or what to do, because for most of us, we know deep down, it's not going to change anytime soon, so what good does talking about it do?
That said, I'm not writing this to say that I have anything revelatory to add, nor do I always have a good perspective or follow the advice I'm about to share, but in seven years of being married to a man that works long hours and four of which I've been a mom to small children, I have come a long way in my attitude and learned a few tricks to ease the frustration. So to the mom who's husband works long hours, this is my letter to you.