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How can I help my partner get over the fact that I have to leave?

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  • How can I help my partner get over the fact that I have to leave?

    When I'm getting towards the end of my leave period my girlfriend always starts to get very upset; not sleeping, crying at night, moody.

    I've obviously got the usual anxious feeling before heading off again too and this just makes it ten times worse.

    I worry about her when I'm away, especially when she's so upset before I even leave.

    I'm losing sleep myself worrying about her.


    I'm sure this is something a lot of us experience with our loved ones. Does anyone have any advice or tips in dealing with this?
    Chiefly the chief

  • #2
    I'm afraid to say, it's the case with everybody. I don't know how long your trips are? But could maybe try get shorter contracts.

    Its part and parcel of the job and it doesn't seem to get much easier.

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    • #3
      Thanks for the reply. I think shorter trips would help. I currently do nearly 12 weeks.
      Chiefly the chief

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      • #4
        Do you skype/maintain contact whilst you're away? How much do you involve her in your working life? It sounds silly but it could help - if you let her know exactely what you do instead of just framing it 'I'm off for xxx long at work' then it could help. It's less of a 'He's jumping into the great unknown' for her then.
        27//Officer Cadet//Phase Three//Warsash

        My officer cadet blog - SeasboundBySummer.Tumblr.com

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        • #5
          I haven't even started my training yet, but I am in a long distance relationship so I understand your struggles.

          Try and sit down together and plan something for when you're both back together after time at sea, even if it's just a day away etc. Give yourself something to focus on/look forward to on your return.

          You can get fantastic city breaks really cheap these days, perhaps it helps to let her plan a little something

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          • #6
            Originally posted by SeaboundBySunrise View Post
            Do you skype/maintain contact whilst you're away? How much do you involve her in your working life? It sounds silly but it could help - if you let her know exactely what you do instead of just framing it 'I'm off for xxx long at work' then it could help. It's less of a 'He's jumping into the great unknown' for her then.
            I suppose I don't really talk to her that much about work. What's App messaging is available but calling is the usual very expensive satelite only calling.
            Chiefly the chief

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            • #7
              Originally posted by 750XL View Post
              I haven't even started my training yet, but I am in a long distance relationship so I understand your struggles.

              Try and sit down together and plan something for when you're both back together after time at sea, even if it's just a day away etc. Give yourself something to focus on/look forward to on your return.

              You can get fantastic city breaks really cheap these days, perhaps it helps to let her plan a little something
              Yeah we've done this in the past and it definitely helps a bit
              Chiefly the chief

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              • #8
                Originally posted by DenJayscay View Post
                I suppose I don't really talk to her that much about work. What's App messaging is available but calling is the usual very expensive satelite only calling.
                Obviously I don't know too much about your living situation but is it worth picking up a basic second mobile with a PAYG roaming sim? It'll cost a penny but if it's your only big cost whilst out there and it allows you to properly stay in touch then surely it's worth it? I know whatsapp is great but having that 1 on 1 experiance of more regullar phone calls could help a lot.
                27//Officer Cadet//Phase Three//Warsash

                My officer cadet blog - SeasboundBySummer.Tumblr.com

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                • #9
                  Can you use voice call on what's app? You could arrange in advance to get flowers or a plant sent every now and then, if you have a local florist write the cards and ask them to be sent with them. Coincide with any particular memorable dates that kind of thing. Any local shop somewhere that could deliver small gifts. No need to be expensive things. I'd also get her involved in some activity or hobby if she doesn't already, keep her occupied. Perhaps she is a tad controlling? Crying moody stuff because it's not something she can control? At least she has her family and friends around when you are not there, where as that's not something you lot at sea have is it.

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                  • #10
                    There is no easy solution and it takes effort on both sides to make it work and sadly sometimes it doesn't work. Even with the relationships that do work you can have your challenges. Communication is absolute key.
                    Also one other point to be aware of is that you will change and grow as a person at sea, you will be shaped by the things you experience, see, feel and the cultures that you are exposed to. This can be a very good thing for you, but may affect your relationship over time.

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                    • #11
                      Definitely not an easy thing to cope with but one most of us experience. My wife still cries when i go away and we've been married over 20 years, so i cannot say it will get better. She has a routine now to deal with me being away, she does any laundry I've left behind, tidies up my **** lying about and 'puts me away'. She also has a countdown calendar for when I'm due home so each week is one less and something to look forward to and get excited about. Sharing what you do is necessary, we don't talk on the phone very often but we text and email a lot so are constantly in touch. Hope you work out a routine that suits you both.


                      Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
                      If you can't laugh, you shouldn't have joined!!

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                      • #12
                        It's nice to see a thread like this open up, obviously it's not a nice thing to go through but it's something we all deal with but don't seem to talk about very often.

                        One thing my girlfriend and I started this trip is reading together, so we both get a copy of the same book then set a certain number of pages we have to have read by a certain time then talk about it over email or messenger. It's a nice way of still doing something together even while we're apart, it also makes the trip feel shorter because you're essentially splitting it into chapters.

                        On top of that, planning the next leave is good, anything to make her look forward to the time you are there as opposed to just being sad about the time you're not.

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                        • #13
                          Love that book idea that's a really good one. For parents of course it's a different relationship and in particular when it's cadets at sea for the first time, no one really has a clue what it's going to be like on either side ( seafaring family an exception) . For those sponsored by one company they have perhaps a better idea as they at least can be briefed about what facilities there are for contact, but those going on different vessels it's an unknown for each trip. Cruise being the exception they at least have an itinerary!
                          Using something like marine traffic at least gives you a rough idea of where in the world they are and an idea of when they maybe near enough land to send a message of some description depending on the company, and what email system they have etc.
                          Add in the average young cadet probably puts parents somewhere down the bottom of the list of contacts, and there can be long gaps of complete silence. Unless of course they want something!

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                          • #14
                            That book idea is lovely, might have to suggest that.
                            27//Officer Cadet//Phase Three//Warsash

                            My officer cadet blog - SeasboundBySummer.Tumblr.com

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                            • #15
                              Slightly off topic so apologies for the thread drift, but generally what forms of communication are available when you're at sea, to contact loved ones?

                              From what I gather, internet access tends to be a luxury at sea not provided by many companies.

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