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The Lies We Tell Ourselves As First Responder Spouses...

Updated: Oct 3, 2023

From episode: Lies First Responder Spouses Tell Themselves

We have a fun and interesting topic for you today too. The lies we tell ourselves as first responder spouses. A monologue, if you will. We love a monologue.

I'm sure they'll always be safe. It's the mantra we repeat in our minds, a way to ease the worry that constantly gnaws at our hearts. We know they're well -trained, equipped with skills to handle any situation that comes their way, but deep down we understand that danger is an inherent part of their job. We just hope and pray that they'll return home unscathed each time they step out the door.

They'll always have time for me. We imagine a world where our schedules align effortlessly, where we can plan vacations, date nights, and family gatherings without the constant shadow of uncertainty. The reality is that their work doesn't conform to a predictable timetable. Emergencies can strike at any moment, disrupting plans and stealing away the moments we long for. We learn to cherish the stolen minutes, the impromptu embraces, and find solace in the understanding that their absence is not a reflection of their commitment to us.

I can handle everything on my own. It's a brave face we put on convincing ourselves that we're strong enough to carry the weight of responsibility alone. We don't want to burden our partners with our worries or struggles knowing they're already bearing the weight of the world on their shoulders, but the truth is no one can do it all alone. We need support, understanding, and a network of others who share our journey. We learn to lean on friends, family, and fellow first responders spouses who understand the unique challenges we face.

Their work won't affect our relationship. We desperately want to believe that their job won't seep into the very fabric of our relationship, that it won't cast a dark cloud over the love and connection we share, but the emotional toll of their work can't be ignored. The stress, trauma, and unpredictable nature of their profession can shape their demeanor, their outlook on life, and their ability to be fully present. We must confront these challenges head on acknowledging the impact and finding ways to support each other through the highs and lows.

I don't need to talk about it. Silence can be tempting, a shield against the pain and worry that constantly loom. We convince ourselves that by avoiding conversations about their work we're protecting ourselves from the weight of it all, but through strength, wise, and vulnerability and open communication we must create spaces where we can share our fears, our concerns, and our hope knowing that it is through these conversations we can truly understand and support each other.

I shouldn't burden them with my worries. We convince ourselves that our partners work is already filled with so much stress and responsibility that sharing our own concerns or anxieties would only add to their burden. We strive to be strong and self -sufficient not wanting to distract them from their vital duties, but it's important to remember that a healthy relationship thrives on open communication and mutual support. Sharing our worries can strengthen our bond and help us navigate the challenges together.

Their absence means they don't care. When your partner's work demands long hours, late night shifts, or missed family events it's easy to fall into the trap of thinking their absence equates to a lack of love and commitment. Truth is their absence is often an unfortunate consequence of their dedication to serving and protecting others. It's crucial to remind ourselves that their absence doesn't diminish the depth of their love or their devotion to our family.

I need to be the pillar of strength. We believe that we must always be unwavering and unshakable in the face of challenges. We put on a brave face suppressing our own fears, worries, and vulnerabilities. While it's essential to be strong, it's equally important to acknowledge our own emotions and seek support when needed. Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable doesn't diminish our strength but empowers us to weather the storm together.

I should keep their work separate from our home life. We may feel tempted to compartmentalize our partner's work creating a clear division between their professional and personal lives. We want to maintain a sense of normalcy and protect our family from the stresses and traumas they encounter. However, it's crucial to find a healthy balance. Acknowledging and discussing the challenges they face can foster understanding empathy and provide an opportunity for healing and growth as a couple.


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