Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Cop's Wife

There's an old country and western song that says "stand by your man." That is the short version of what a cop needs his wife to do for him. Police work will cause your man to work on the weekends, probably for years, maybe forever. He will work long shifts and miss family gatherings, the kids functions at school, and your anniversary.

Your cop will come home and be upset, but he won't talk to you about it. He will see things you can never imagine, and he won't want to you try to imagine them. He will have to deal with politics, and judges and administrators that will seem unfair to him. He will be angry and yet, tell you he is fine.

Your cop will need you to love him. He will need you to listen when he talks and not force him to talk when he does not want to talk. He will need your support when he has to go to court on his day off, when he needs a new uniform because his got torn in a fight. He needs you to be there for him and stand by him; that's what the SGT Says.

10 comments:

Snickering Corpses said...

Definitely agree with what you've said here. I would add, on the cop's side, it's important to learn how to communicate to your wife what you've experienced today. I suspect that how will vary from one couple to another.

It's been my impression over time that one of the biggest killers in cop marriages is inability to communicate. It's a fine line between protecting her from things she doesn't need to imagine, which is a good intent, and locking your emotions up inside, which is the negative side. Women are, as a general rule, much more dependent on emotional connection than men. If you're not careful, locking those stresses inside can stunt your ability to connect emotionally.

It may even be useful to ask your wife straight up something like, "Sometimes I see some really bad things I don't want you and the kids to have to deal with. What do I need to tell you in those times so you don't have to deal with the ugly details but don't feel cut off from what's going on inside me?"

Your wife is your partner, or should be. I don't think some cops think of their home relationship in quite that way. It takes a lot of work on both sides to build a good partnership.

Meadowlark said...

We discuss this amongst ourselves quite a bit too

http://apolicewife.blogspot.com/2009/05/lesson-2.html

And after 24 years of marriage (14 LEO) Husband knows which things he can talk to me about and which things he talks to our best friends (officer and probation officer) about. Some things I just can't remove the visuals. :(

Kimber said...

This is a tricky balance for husband and wife, but I think it is easier from my perspective (the wife) now that I'm finding the online support of other wives and families.
walkingathinblueline.blogspot.com

Love your blog, thanks.

Kimber said...

On and Snickering Corpses, yep, what you said. I love how straight up my husband has been on how to communicate with each other when he cant talk about it.

Bunkermeister said...

Thanks Kimber.

Tell all your friends. ;)

Bunkermeister said...

I have been blessed with two great wives. Not at the same time...

Protect_and_Serve said...

If you decide for your wife what she should and should not know, remember this...the only other people in your home that you treat like that are the kids. Your wife will start feeling like your child and that will greatly change how she emotianlly and physically relates to you.

Bunkermeister said...

It is important to treat the spouse as an equal. But not every gruesome detail needs to be explained to the spouse.

The Pup said...

How would you say it is different when both partners are officers?

Bunkermeister said...

When both spouses are officers it can be difficult because you may never get away from work. You have to worry not only about your partner but about your spouse too, because they are the same person.

At least the spouse will understand some of that which goes unsaid better than a non-police spouse, but then you may not talk things out as much.