I think when families work split shifts as is most often the case in my area it can cause friction when the time that they do have together is interupted by drill or tones. Then it becomes a matter or putting a priority on what calls/drills are most important and express that to your spouse.
I know this all too well... My girlfriend lives three hours away... Whenever she would come down for the weekend, it seemed that the pager would go off at the most inopportuned time... if we were headed to lunch, to play tourist, etc... At first she would get upset because i would leave, but ultimately she realizes firefighting is my passion, and volunteers are the firefighters here in Moab... We dont have a paid staff to rely on if we choose not to respond... She loves me and supports my decision to serve my community... and i love her for that...
What is this thing you refer to as 'relationship'? LOL All I have time for is kids, work and the FD. No one else would ever understand my life, and trying to break anyone in at this point is rough. And, some guys aer just a little turned off by a strong female!!
BTW - hey there Paul!!!! When are you going to visit us at MFD?
I agree between the department and everything else I dont have the time. The last guy I was in a relationship broke up with me when I finished Fire I... his reasoning for staying that long "I didnt think you would actually pass and I cant be with a girl who is firefighter and I dont even hold doors for people. Thats too much good." Needless to say I am not missing much.
Well it has interfered with my job a few times, calls taking a long time... the ones that last all night and leave no time for sleep before work... they would get mad when they were called and said that I would be in late... I never called off no matter how tired i was... or what i had just been through... Needless to say, I dont work there any more!!!
As for my Family... It took them some getting used to, They didn't even know I had applied to the department and was going to classes till the Chief called the house and I didn't answer and talked to my mom... asked how class was going (we were all eating dinner) she hung up asked what he was talking about and started crying. She would not talk about it for about a year, didn't want to know a thing, same with my sister and little brothers. My Dad warmed up to the idea after about a week. Now they still have a hard time with it, but know its what i love to do and that im not going to give it up! They just ask to not know whats going on till I come home.
Relationships- They don't seem to last long. They are cool with it till the pager goes off and they know im going to choose the call over him. Or says that i cant hang out or really talk with guys on the department. They are really weird about it.
But all in all i would never change any of it, the only thing that comes before the fire service is my family, and the 2 babies i have on the way! Yes Im on leave but I CANT WAIT TO GET BACK!!!
Yes it does....Luckily my wife understands and is very ok with it...The funny thing is, if Im bugging her she will ask me "Don't you have a burning building to run into" Thats when I know its time to be quite LOL