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It’s hard when your husband travels for work. Whether he’s away for a weekend or a season, having a strong marriage despite the distance and stress takes a lot of work! I’ve been through it, and I’ve gathered my best tips for staying connected when your husband travels for work.
Keith started his career as a truck driver when Emma was less than a year old. Getting used to him being over the road for months at a time was really difficult. Not only was I at home all day with a baby, he was lonely and dealing with the stresses of a new job! He was gone for two or three months at a time to start. After that, he got a new job that brought him home every two weeks. Now we’re lucky enough that he has a regular job and gets to sleep in his bed every night. But those months apart taught us a lot about good communication and putting effort into our marriage. Keep reading to find out what keeps us connected when my husband travels for work, and the mistakes we made, too!
Scheduling time to talk is my absolute number one tip! No one wants to feel like their spouse is too busy to talk to them. Find a time in the day when you can fully focus on each other. We talked a few times during the day, but Keith would always call me about an hour after Emma’s bedtime every night. That way, Emma would be asleep, I had time to get my bedtime chores done, and we could really focus on each other. Schedule a time when neither of you will be distracted and will have lots of time to share about your day.
Write it Down
When my husband travels for work, one of the times I miss him most is when something funny happens, and he’s not there to see it! But my mom brain was so terrible, I couldn’t remember to tell him about it. I’d also forget to tell him important things like that bill we got in the mail. Unfortunately, all this forgetting made for some uncomfortable phone calls where neither of us had much to say! Avoid this by jotting down what you want to tell him on a sticky note or a note in your phone throughout the day. Keep it nearby during your phone time to keep the conversation flowing and to keep him in the loop!
It’s Not a Business Call
On a related note, make sure your phone calls aren’t all business. It’s easy to slip into the pattern of just updating him on what he’s missing on the homefront. Don’t forget to share about what you’re watching on TV, what you want to do when he gets home, etc. Involve him in your life by asking him for advice and what he thinks. Let him talk about what he’s doing while he’s traveling, even if you aren’t particularly interested! Remember, he’s probably missing his family very much, and wants to feel like he matters to you.
Try Not to Burden Him
This was one of the mistakes I had to learn. When Keith would call, I would often unload on him all the things that went wrong that day. Eventually, he told me that made him feel helpless – because I was struggling and he wasn’t there to help! I had no idea he felt that way. Now, I’m not saying bottle up your emotions and make him think everything is perfect at home. But try not to complain just for the sake of conversation!
It’s Not a Competition
Another mistake of ours. He’s away from his family, you’re juggling the kids and house… It’s hard to hear each other complain when you each think you have the harder job! In the end, it doesn’t matter who actually has the more difficult job. What matters is that you both respect each other’s struggles and empathize. Even if his truck breaks down and his company pays for him to spend the night in a fancy hotel!
Plan Something Special
The first day back home is so important when your husband travels for work. Remember that he mights want to just come home and rest with his family for a day or two before actually doing anything. But make sure to plan something special to welcome him home, whether that’s his favorite homemade dinner and a Netflix movie, or dinner out at a steakhouse! Take time to make him feel loved and appreciated, because that will set you up for a great home time before he has to leave again.
Make Him Miss You
Make sure to use your together time to, well, be together! Spend his time at home connecting and spending real quality time with each other. If you can, avoid giving him a long to-do list for his home time, so he can enjoy his family. Laugh together, play games together, watch movies, eat, snuggle… Whatever it is that makes you feel connected as a couple. Use his home time wisely, because when your husband travels for work, that together time needs to fill you both up!
If your husband travels for work, how do you keep your marriage strong? Tell me in the comments!
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