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Looking for answers from my Brothers and Sisters

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  • Looking for answers from my Brothers and Sisters

    I have been married twice. (NEVER would again) EVERY woman I have EVER been involved with has not been able to handle my Fire Service.

    My wife currently SAYS she is proud that I am a firefighter. (Even if she wasn't, would it matter?....ummm...NO) ANYWAY, I have told EVERY woman that i have EVER been with, was that Firefighting was there long before they came along, and will be there for me LONG after they are gone.

    ANYWAY, I was wondering how many people have the same stresses at home that I do, that being NO support from thier signifcant others? I mean, I will NOT EVER gove it up for ANY woman, but if you have the same prblems at home? If you do, how do you handle it.

    Also, please read and comment on my other posting regarding "Where do Older Firefighters go from here". I appreciate it.

    Your Brother In The Service,
    Rob Herpel
    Vice-Pres./Asst. EMS Coordinator
    Fremont Rural Fire Department

  • #2
    Can't say that I have the same issues...my wife has been the utmost supportive.I have been trying to get hired for many years now and have gone through the tribulations of testing, physicals, orals, she has even helped me study...what can I say I am a lucky man..


    • #3

      I sure hope you don't take this wrong but I have read both of your posts, and I am concerned for you. I think you need to get some professional counseling to deal with your problems. Let's face it, you don't call grocery bag boys to put out fires, why call on firefighters to solve your complicated personal problems.

      First of all, it does take a certain kind of spouse to be a firefighter's significant other. It sounds like the woman you have now is understanding but you want more. Just go along with it and don't always bring the FF stuff up. There IS life outside of the FD.

      Secondly, I read the "after life" post. Man, if all those things are true, you need to face reality. At 30 y/o with all your physical problems, as well as, smoking, you DO need to consider an alternative career.

      It sounds to me like your volunteer role should satify your "hero" needs.

      This profession is very dangerous and your physical ability is one of your greatest assets in safety. If, you are not physically and mentally on top of it, you are a liability. Please consider that your abilities directly affect your fellow firefighters safety.

      Obviously, this is just one opinion and others may disagree.

      Capt. Bill


      • #4
        Here is an opinion from a woman and officer. Your problem does not have anything to do with the fire service. It has to deal with you finding the right person for you. If someone does not support you with the things that you enjoy and that makes you happy then they are the ones with the problem. Just don't ignore the other things in your life that are important also. The fire department is your family but don't ignore the one you have at home.


        • #5

          Want advice? Here's mine:

          The Fire Department was there LONG before YOU came along, and the Fire Department will be there LONG after YOU are gone. Take care of your ladies; if you don't some other man will!


          • #6
            I am afraid I have no advise for you. I am sure that part of my divorce was the result of my ex-wife not understanding that the FD would take a fair amount of my fair time. When she decided I wasn't home enough, she took off and started hanging around with some other guy. While I won't place all of the blame on her, she never did indicate to me that there was a problem until AFTER I had the other guy's wife show up at my front door while they were at some hotel.

            My advise from my experience, COMMUNICATE... ask questions and work on solving problems before it is too late.


            • #7
              It surprises me that EVERY woman you have been with has nto been able to handle your Fire Service duties. I may be way off base, but I would guess that you are a real fanatic about your job. Are you a volunteer or paid full-time firefighter? Are you able to talk about other things besides the Fire Department when you are at home? No matter what the subject, anything can be taken to extremes, and that will turn anybody off.

              Do you show an interest in your wife's line of work or her hobbies? Are there things you like to do together? How much of your free time do you spend at the station or with the guys you work with? It's easy to feel neglected when your partner has a one-track mind.

              My boyfriend is a full-time firefighter/emt. I am very proud of what he does. I support him 100%, but he doesn't shove his job down my throat either. Actually he doesn't talk about it much unless he is mentally or physically drained from his last shift. I don't ask him about work because he asked me not to, but I'll listen with both ears when he needs to talk.

              He is very close with the guys he works with. They are constantly calling each other, stopping to visit, or going hunting and fishing together. That is one of the things we have in common - I LOVE to fish. I was married to a hunter before (and went hunting a few times myself) so I know what it's all about. I can carry on an intelligent conversation when his friends are over and they accept me as "one of the guys". They even go so far as to ask ME is we want to go fishing with them (besides I can fillet a fish better than any of them ). In fact I will be defending my "Fish Cleaning Title" at the local festival next weekend.

              I'll admit that I am not the "average female" due to my interests, but I don't "look like one of the guys" if that's what you're beginning to think. Most people would say that I look like the type that wouldn't put a worm on a hook!

              Sit down and talk with your wife and really listen to what she says. Don't get defensive or turn it into an argument. Find out what she expects from the relationship. If you really can't make things work, there are lots of other fish in the sea.

              Good Luck


              • #8
                Personally I think that the only way to be happy as a married firefighter is to marry another firefighter hahaha
                But then...I don't know much about anything so take that with a grain of salt!
                Probie Name: HurryUpMichelle!!


                • #9
                  "My wife currently SAYS she is proud that I am a firefighter. (Even if she wasn't, would it matter?....ummm...NO) ANYWAY, I have told EVERY woman that i have EVER been with, was that Firefighting was there long before they came along, and will be there for me LONG after they are gone."

                  Hmmmm, you don't think that could be part of the problem, do you? It doesn't matter to you whether she's proud of you or not. She isn't your first love, firefighting is, and it doesn't matter if she leaves or not, you'll still have firefighting.

                  Well call me ol' fashioned, but when I said "I do", it meant putting him first in my life, and expecting the same from him. Careers take priorities at times, but not all the time.


                  • #10
                    This is a dual edged sword. I agree that it is very difficult to find a significant other that understands where you are weekends and why you run out on dinner or in the middle of the night. Try finding a guy willing to explain to his buddies why you just ran out on a BBQ to fight fire while he's sitting there with a burger in his hand...I haven't yet.

                    But some others have made good points... it's give and take. You can't have an attitude that you shouldn't have to give an inch, that she should have to do all the compromising or you are doomed.

                    You can turn the pager off once in a while for a "just the two of you" evening. You can go away for a weekend or even just have a quiet dinner.

                    We all love the fire service or we wouldn't be doing it, but if you let it run your life you are asking for trouble.

                    There is balance.

                    You need someone that will understand your dedication and need for doing it, but YOU must reward that...make it understood that you appreciate the fact that she understands and supports you. Otherwise it sounds like your lives are all about just you and not the TWO of you...

                    Just my two cents... and my boyfriend is a firefighter.
                    Susan Lounsbury
                    Winston-Salem Rescue Squad
                    Griffith Volunteer FD


                    • #11
                      Have you ever sat down and talked with your wife about the job you do? I have left my house on christmas morning at present time with my 4 children begging me not to go to save a choking baby. I have come home after standing in the road for hours over the body of a dead 14 year old child just a couple days before chistmas and cried on my wifes shoulder. Lost moments of making love 'cause the pager goes off and she is the first to say, "you'd better go someone needs you". We all have stories like this. but in the begining she wouldn't come see a fire 3 houses from mine 'cause she saw me going in, but after a while of talking about it she came to understand and now she is a FF\EMT w\ my company. Just try talking about it.


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