10 Things NOT to Say to an Oilfield Wife

10 Things NOT to Say to an Oilfield Wife  #oilfield @oilfieldwives

10 Things NOT to Say to an Oilfield Wife

1. “Oh. He works in oil …?” This is usually followed by unsolicited environmental or political opinions. Sooo, lemme just stop you right there. Unless I ask you for your opinion, please don’t give it. Personally, I love a good debate, and (surprise!) I may actually agree with a lot of what you have to say, but if you don’t know me well? Don’t start. Chances are, I told you because you asked why my husband is gone so much. Let’s leave it at that. Oh, and if the names Al Gore or Michael Moore leave your lips, I’m leaving.

2. “Isn’t that dangerous?” Yes, it is. Yes, it can be scary to think about. In the back of every oilfield wife’s mind is an incident, an accident, an explosion. Please, please don’t bring it to the front for me to obsess over for the rest of the day.

3. “What about sex?” Um, what about it? Not that it’s any of your business, but if that’s the backbone of your relationship, you’ve got other problems. A successful oilfield marriage depends on about a zillion things other than sex. Could your relationship go weeks or months without sex? No? Then maybe you should be congratulating me, or asking me for advice, instead of sticking your nose in our bedroom. And when he’s home? Ladybugs. Lots and lots of ladybugs. (If you don’t get the reference, go watch Under the Tuscan Sun with a box of tissue and a pint of your favorite ice cream.)

4. “Will he be home for Christmas / your anniversary / a birthday / the birth of a baby?” Two weeks on, two weeks off. If that date falls during his days off, yes, he’ll be home. If not? No, he won’t be home. I know this question is asked with love and good intentions, but it sucks. Please stop asking.

5. “You chose this, so you can’t complain about it.” Yes, we did choose this. Every single day he’s on hitch, my husband risks his life when he goes to work, to drill for the stuff that makes you comfortable. Oh, you don’t drive a car? Well, your bike tires, your phone, your insulated coffee cup, the soles of your shoes, your refrigerator … Guess what? They’re made with oil. My husband works hard to provide for his family, and that’s why he does what he does; that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

6. “What do you do while he’s gone?” In a nutshell? Try to stay sane. I’m sure there are a handful of oilfield wives out there who wonder what to do when their husbands are away, but I don’t know any! As for me, I have to be two people: Mama and Dada. Cook and handyman. Boo-boo kisser and boogeyman chaser. Trust me, I stay busy. Maybe too busy. Do I get lonely? Yes. Do I get bored? No.

7. “You must really miss him.” DUH.

8. “Well, I’m sure you’re used to him being gone all the time by now.” Yes, in the 7 years my husband has been roughnecking, I’ve learned to deal with certain things a bit better. And as a mama, I know that there are activities and routines that will help a hitch go by more quickly, but you never get used to weeks away from the love of your life.

9. “One time, my husband had to go away for a weekend business trip. I understand!” No, you don’t. This is our life. A business trip here and there isn’t the same. Did your husband work 12+ hours a day, with no weekends? Could he call you pretty much anytime he wanted? Did he sleep in a comfortable bed? Aaaand, he probably hardly had to pay for any of that. So, I’m sorry … whatever sense of camaraderie you’re trying to forge between us isn’t going to happen that way, because I’m shooting invisible needles out my eyes at you right now.

10. “I don’t know how you do it; I couldn’t.” This is supposed to be a compliment. And maybe it is. But the reason it also bothers me a bit is because it’s almost always that, and nothing more. Don’t just remind me how hard I have it, offer to help! We oilfield wives have no built-in support. No bases or posts. No family readiness groups. No official spouse’s clubs. What we do have are challenges. Lots of ‘em. A freezer meal, a few hours of free babysitting, a care package for my husband, a coffee or play date. Heck, give me a hug and tell me I can call you anytime, day or night. The smallest gesture of support and friendship can mean the world.

So now that you’re stressing, because you’ve said one, four, all of the above things to an oilfield wife in your life — don’t. We still love you. And now you know.

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katie-profileKatie lives in the suburbs of Denver, Colorado, where she raises her sweet daughter, Maile, who will be 2 in the spring! Katie has been married to the love of her life for going on 6 years; every one of those years as a roughneck wife. The family also includes two spaniels, and a very persnickety old cat. Katie spends most of her time reading books with her little one, going down the slide at the park 10,000 times, painting and playing pretend, and dreaming of growing all her own food. You can also find her at her family lifestyle blog, Standpipe and Sprinkles.

Avatar of Katie About Katie

Katie lives in the suburbs of Denver, Colorado, where she raises her sweet daughter, Maile, who just turned two! Katie has been married to the love of her life for going on 6 years; every one of those years as a roughneck wife. The family also includes two spaniels, a very persnickety old cat, and two aquatic frogs. Katie spends most of her time reading books with her little one, going down the slide at the park 10,000 times, painting and playing pretend, and dreaming of growing all her own food. You can also find her at her family lifestyle blog, See You There.

  • http://christy.shrinkingjeans.net Christy_TheSistherhood

    LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!!!!!!!

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      Thank you so much, Christy!

  • http://www.whereverimaywander.com LissaJoy

    GREAT post, Katie!

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      Thanks, pretty lady! So glad you liked it!

      • truck pusher

        Thanks for that Katie I really enjoyed reading your blog. My wife of twelve years enjoys the life I provide for her and my two boys…

  • April

    First off I would like to say I love your blog because I have many family and friends who’s husbands who work in the oilfield. Second it is a little upsetting to hear as a army wife that it comes off that we may have it a bit easier being in the military with this built in support. I would much rather have my mom, brother, cousin, ect instead of a stranger I may have just met after being there maybe 6 months at that maybe even in a different country not knowing their language. After 16 years of marriage my husband has been gone almost half of that at those were one year at a time. Within the year he could come home but for only 14 days. So for the 10 things don’t like to hear there are a few military wives don’t like to hear either. At least this one.

    • http://www.facebook.com/katie.h.mitchell Katie Mitchell

      Hi April! First, thank you so much for your sweet compliment. It is so wonderful to be on the receiving end of such positive feedback. :) Second, it is not my intent to minimize the challenges military wives face, or the sacrifices they make. I am the daughter of a retired Army officer. My brother was an Army Ranger Sniper. When my hubby and I first got together — you guessed it — he was in the Army. From 2001 to 2004, I only saw my dad a handful of times. All were deployed to combat zones. I have lived that life, know what it is like, and never, not even for a moment, take our military (or military spouses) for granted. In fact, I’m often told, “Well, at least Tim isn’t in the Army!” I laugh and say, “He used to be.” I only meant that there are no built-in, established support systems for oilfield wives, which is a shame, because they are so helpful! I know for a fact that being a military wife is no easier, not by a long shot — so I hope you will forgive that it came across that way; I would never presume to say something like that! Thank you to you, and your husband, for your service to this great nation of ours. And thank you for your honest feedback. Hooah!

      • April

        Thanks for clarifying and sorry for jumping to a conclusion. Maybe you can do something in your local area for all the ladies who feel the same way. Potlucks, pajama movie night parties, care package Saturdays, babysitting swaps, ect. Maybe that could be a thought if there is any close around you. I know in my home town there are a lot of wives because it is a small town.

        • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

          Great idea! I just recently reached out to a few wives who posted on the ROW Facebook page. Living in the Denver suburbs, there just isn’t an area with a large concentration of oilfield wives, but I’d like to try to work on a little somethin’ for those of us who *do* make our homes here. :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/callie.b.daniels Callie Beth Daniels

      I come from a military family and I’m married to a Roughneck, so I also know both sides. The thing about being military that is a bit easier is that many live on base and have each other close for support. When you are in the oilfield, everybody is spread out. I live in a very rural area in Southern West Virginia and the closest oilfield wives to me, that I have found so far, are about two hours away. You also mentioned about having family as your support instead of strangers, many oilfield wives move all over the country just like military wives to be closer to the rig site. So they don’t have family as support either.That’s the way I took what Katie was saying. The life of a military spouse is not easier, but there is better access to support groups.

      • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

        Thank you SO much, Callie. You are right on!

  • Jenarae

    Why bring the military into it? The reason there are spouses clubs is because the spouses spearheaded those projects. If you’re complaining about not having support, create your own support groups.

    • Taylor

      Agreed!

      • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

        Hey there, Taylor! Please see my reply to Jenarae, above, if you like.

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      Hi, Jenarae! Respectfully, I wasn’t trying to bring the military “into it.” I was simply stating a fact, and certainly not complaining. You can read my comments below for some more information on my upbringing / military life. What is awesome, is that groups like OSC *are* beginning to spring up in oilfield communities, and that’s a wonderful thing. Now that we have the internet, we can find some support online, too — also fantastic! However, FRG-type things, etc. are not a guaranteed part of oilfield life; I simply think it’s great that the military provides this service (as it should, and though I know from experience that it can be lacking). Thanks for your honesty, here.

    • Sarah

      The problem w having wives groups for oil field workers is that we live all over the country. I am on the very eastern side of ND where there is no oil drilling. The closest oil field wife I know is 4 hours away. This is true for many parts of the country. I’d guess a vast majority of oil field workers travel 12+ hours by car of fly into where their rig is at. It’s not that we don’t want support groups, it’s that if we did, a lot of us would be at it by ourselves.

  • mayonnaise

    your husband works in the oilfield because he’s too stupid to do anything else

    • http://www.whereverimaywander.com LissaJoy

      Hey mayonnaise, if you are going to make such a ridiculous and ignorant comment, at least be brave enough to do it without making up a fake email and username.

    • rosewatson

      WHAT???? Mu husband was a superintendent for big consruction companies before the crash..Now he works in the oil field. It was a blessing from God and my husband loves it! Will never go back to construction.. He is extremly smart.. If you have never been out there then do not judge. It takes alot of heart to do what they do.. Keep em turning to the right men!!!

    • Colorado

      “Stupid is as stupid does”. Such things as this comment! My husband has been drilling in the geotechnical construction industry for 30 years. He repairs the subsurface damage caused by earthquakes, water, and other acts of nature that disrupts buildings, roads, retaining walls, and reservoir dams. He is home every other weekend and 3 vacation weeks per year. The knowledge he has in subsurface formations and how to accomplish all the techniques from the engineering world is amazing. Very ignorant comment.

    • Amanda

      I know its kinda of a late response but i just recently found this website/blog

      Stupidity gets you killed in the oil field….. in fact my husband is extremely smart and can do TRIG in his freaking head while I’m struggling to figure it out on the calculator…. He’s been in the patch for 10+ years and has earned his way up the ladder to become a Sr. Directional Driller in which cases most companies wont even look at you for directional drilling unless you have a petroleum engineering degree. SO with that being said None of these men are “stupid” by any means!

    • Ann

      My husband has a bachelor’s degree. Im pretty sure most stupid people don’t have degrees. Just because someone works as a rough neck does not mean they are stupid.

    • Oilfield Engineer

      This is such an ignorant comment. I work in the oilfield. Two weeks on, two weeks off. I also have a degree in chemical engineering. I didn’t choose to work in the oilfield because I was too stupid to do anything else; I chose to work in the oilfield because (in my case) it paid $135,000 a year.

      Don’t get me wrong.. There are some idiots that work in the oilfield. But there are idiots anywhere. This industry is full of more than just roughnecks and roustabouts. There are mariners, mechanics, engineers, managers, electricians, cooks, operators, divers, chemists, pilots, clerks, paramedics, and a ton of other positions that are unique to the oilfield. Nearly all of these professions require much more specialized training in my industry than they do anywhere else.

      I view my career in the oil & gas industry as a privilege, not a burden. Sure, parts of it suck. But the good outweighs the bad.

    • israel

      Your probably just a lil bitch who ain’t tough enough for the rigs

  • Huntsman

    Thanks to a friend.. i have just discovered your blog.. <3 :) Love it.. Thanks.. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1009910610 Melissa Rose Christensen

    I think what “Mayonnaise” was trying to say is that many people think that “your husband works in the oilfield because he’s too stupid to do anything else”. I think mayonnaise was trying to list that as another thing NOT to say to an oilfield wife. Also, my husband AND I were in the military, now he has been all over the US working in the oilfields. It’s not easy for anybody. The other day my 7 yr old said to me, “Mom, sometimes it’s like you are single cause Daddy is always gone.” Both are dangerous, both require devotion, neither one is going to make you rich. (That’s another thing people think, that you’re made out of money) I am lucky enough to belong a wonderful church that has a great support system and is aware of our family’s situation. It is important to let people know what you need so they can be of service. IT’S OK TO ASK FOR HELP!!! We have to be there for each other.

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      I couldn’t agree more with everything you said, Melissa! Thanks so much for your comment.

    • Brittany

      Last time I checked in 8 months even the low man on the totem pole will make more than an E5 deployed marine/airman/soldier/sailor and you get your husband home half of the time. I wish my husband was on the oil fields and not deployed but that is life, he is deployed and giving wives the freedom to bitch about their husbands working away from home 2 weeks a month! Count your blessings instead of dwelling on short comings and you will make it much further in life.

      • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

        If you read the comments below, Brittany, you’ll see that I grew up an Army brat, and that my husband was in the Army, too. This post is really meant to be tongue-in-cheek; the last thing I want to do is “bitch”, so I regret that it was read as such. I love our life. Thank you, and your husband, for your service to this great nation of ours!

      • a wife and mom

        Being a soldier wife is hard. Comparing oil field to military is like apples to oranges. A lot of oil field is ex military so we know the difficulties of both life styles. When your spouse is deployed it is extremely hard. Luckily they aren’t always deployed and getting shot at. Yes oil field makes more money but they also don’t get all the well deserved benefits military does, housing, health, .suppprt. etc. Its also not a stable or consistent paycheck. Both lifestyles have their issues. Neither are easy. Let’s stop comparing and start supporting every spouse that has to live without their loved one for any length of time.

      • Manda

        My husband is an engineer in the oilfield, and he doesn’t work away for only two weeks a month. He is on call 24/7. That means he was gone 327 days last year. In two very dangerous countries. Away from home for long periods. Missing everything. Not all oilfield workers have set schedules. He’s been gone for months on end… to the point where we all stop counting. I would never complain about this to anyone other than him, of course, because we DID choose this. We chose it to give our kids the life we want them to have. And to be honest, I don’t think his career or military careers pay enough for what these men and women go through to provide BOTH safety AND comfort.

  • LoraM

    As a wife of a former OTR driver and now a frac sand hauler I just nodded my head and laughed as I read this. My hubby has driven truck for a lot of years/miles, last count was 2.8 million miles I do believe. We live in his home state of North Dakota in a tiny little no stop light town 22 miles from the grocery store, no post office, just an engine builder, a cafe, a bar and 3 churches.Yep he’s gone way too much, on average somewhere between 300 and 315 days out of the year, but I have learned to live with it and keep my big girl panties securely fastened. I get a LOT of comments like, “Oh you poor baby how do you manage?” Really, are you serious, is the look they normally get back. I have learned basic plumbing, always have a Haynes Manuel for every truck or car you own, find out the local plow guys favorite baked goods {your driveway will be kept clean}, and learn to trouble shoot a problem before you panic.Last but not least have a sense of humor, that helps more then anything.

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      Agreed, Lora! And you know how to do waaay more than I do, haha. Go, girl!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chelsea-Niehaus/600410044 Chelsea Niehaus

    Does anyone ever get this one, “You know that’s young man’s work! He can’t do that forever!” I can’t count how many times I’ve heard this and everything I’ve experienced so far seems to show that idea is completely wrong.

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      Yep, I’ve heard that a bunch, Chelsea! I just explain to them that as Tim advances in his job, there is a lot less physical labor involved. :)

    • NEPAgal

      My husband is 48 years young and didn’t even break into the patch until he was 40. He has had no problem keeping up. While he has worked his way up the ladder to driller, he still fills in for floorhand if needed during his days off. Age is a product of mind over matter, if you don’t mind, it don’t matter.

  • Jessica McKee

    How can I subscribe to your blog if the link doesn’t want to work?? :/ I LOVE reading it!

  • Brian

    Hi Katie, I am a commercial diver living in fort collins but i work in the gulf of Mexico. I love everything you said, it was dead on and made me laugh!!! It takes a strong woman to be able to stand behind their man like this I know it’s not easy. As a diver i have to take the jobs when they com , and sometimes that means being offshore for 2 or 3 months at a time. It is a very difficult thing to leave behind the ones you love. But at the same time, knowing you have a good woman to come home to makes it a little easier. Keep on keeping on girl!!! Oh ya and thay idiot mayonnaise that said the rude stuff earlier on here is just jealous that you ate m!king life work in your favor! Good luck and keep it up!!

    • http://twitter.com/MrsKittyMitch Katie Mitchell

      Hi Brian! Thank you SO much for the encouraging words. Really, this post was just meant to do exactly what it made you do — laugh! :) Even though Tim’s time away from home can be tough, we love our life, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. As you say, hard work and a lot of love make everything worth it! Your job sounds super interesting! It’s the first time I’ve thought about commercial divers being needed in the industry … but of course that makes sense. COOL! Best wishes to you and yours this year.

  • goatsintutusbalm

    I hate hearing people telling me its a dangerous job, yes I know what he does and I even have a S*%t I Don’t to Hear list when he’s working. I’ve been in the position of getting the dreaded middle of the night phone call when he got hurt. Thank the good Lord it wasn’t anything to serious. He has survived a major well blowout, among others that weren’t as bad, when he was working in New Mexico and he was on the floor. Also we are in the middle of planning a wedding around the typical oil field schedule and worrying about what if he pulls a rig move, etc. I love your writing with such humor b/c some days that’s what gets us oil field wives/girlfriends through a day.

  • Meghan

    LOVE what you wrote! Couldn’t agree with you more!!!..one thing I would have added that bugs the crap out of me is that people think you have lots of money cause your husband works oilfield….. If that was the case we would have been in a house insted of living in a camper.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Val.fixie.4200 Fixie Pixie

    I love love love this!!! You summed it up nicely!! ;) well said!!! I miss my honey every night!!!

  • HJ

    I so agree!

  • nancy chaffin

    I understand. My husband has been in the oilfield since 1979. He has worked domestic and overseas. It was very challenging to raise two children with the nearest family member living 600 miles from us
    We were blessed with good friends.

  • mrs housemouse

    UK wife here who’s husband works in Saudi 6-8 weeks on and 2 off, 14 years and counting. This spoke to me I can tell you! I would add a couple more:
    no 11: “yeah, but think of the money” pfff… go research what your local councillor/store manager/management consultant earns in comparison and tell his wife what you think? Then factor in what it costs us to keep in touch, live in two locations (no, not everything is provided for him)… sure we’re lucky to be comfortable in this day and age. But please don’t think we live the life of the Ewings!
    no 12: “have you booked a holiday this year?” Ever tried when you have no idea what your schedule for the week is, let alone for the next few months? Not all oilfield workers enjoy a fixed schedule. For some, they have to work to the job even if that means they end up going home on leave a week late.
    no 13: (my absolute pet hate) “oh great, he’s back in this country for a whole two weeks! You must come and see us before we head off on our ski trip..” (like he really wants to spend his leave driving up and down the country only to listen to you drivel on about how dreadful the airport queues are at the ski resort when he’s just had to fly half way around the world to get home for a break?) thanks but no thanks. Why not go the extra mile for a change and come see HIM at our place? You could help cook a reunion dinner?
    no 14: “we didn’t get a Christmas letter from you this year?” that’s right. We haven’t had our Christmas yet and most of my 5 minute sit down time is taken up with writing things to my husband. You see, all OUR converstaions have to be by email. Right down to those itsy bitsy chats about what to buy mother for Christmas. Try typing every word you want to say each other for just one day and see how far you get…
    Oh boy I could go on and on !
    Happy Christmas fellow oil wives. Hope you and yours have a good one.. whenever it may be :D

  • John

    Hello,your article made me laugh its so true and people do not even realize what they are saying. People alaways ask my wife is he on a drilling rig, I work offshore, on pipe laying barges, laying pipe lines for oil and gas. I have a wife of 20 years, that has stood by my side, life hasnt always been easy for us , sometimes I am gone uo to 4 months at a time,I have worked on 5 continents and right now I am in Tanzania. ,Luckily my brother and two best friends work offshore as well and live close by, so my wife has some women to talk with about how life is with pipe liners . I have missed alot my kids growing up. But its the work I love and pays more than a banker makes. Anyway I sent your atricle to my wife and i am sure she will get a laugh and enjoy the humor of it.Thanks

  • Sonya Ainsworth Walker

    One of my favorites is that people think we get oil and gas for free. YUP He brings it home in soda bottles. smh

  • Shawn

    That’s cute… I’m stationed half way across the world from my wife and havnt seen her for a year

  • Annabelle

    thanks for the laughs. that was pathetic

  • Thisisstupid

    I was linked to this article from a reddit threat talking about “What the dumbest thing people take pride in”. Out of almost 20,000 responses ROW’s ranked close to the top of the first page so I know I’m not alone when I say this. This article reads like you’re somehow better then everyone else because your an oil sands wife when it reality your doing a job that millions of single parents do 24/7/365. Personally I’d never ask ANY of these questions because I wouldn’t want to give you an opportunity to rant and rave about how much stronger/better you are as a person because your husband chose to work in a certain industry. Just because I’m in the Armed Forced doesn’t mean my wife goes around telling people she’s an army wife or uses it as leverage to put herself above others or blogs about how unique and special she is because of what her husband does for a living. Also who do you think started groups for partners of military members? That’s right, the partners of military members! Just because you don’t have one doesn’t mean you never will. If you want to start a support group than go out and start one. Finally what your partner does for a job shouldn’t define YOU and you should never let it – have your own identity for Christ sakes. You chose to marry a rigger, no one forced you into this situation so excuse me for being having zero ounces of sympathy for you.

    • Racer123

      Wow. First of all, please edit your comment for spelling and grammar. After you have done that, please go back and read the parts in her narrative stating that she doesn’t want sympathy, she knows she chose her life, and she is very independent.
      Many of your wives / partners live on bases where there are other people in the same situation. This would make it easier to find immediate support. As riggers, we do not have the luxury of military housing or bases to live on, like your own little world of seclusion and order-taking. At least couples in the oil and gas industry do not have to wait for orders. We stand up for ourselves independently, and don’t publicly ask for sympathy or support for our choices. There is no “Support the Riggers” campaign, but I see “Support the Troops” everywhere; veterans affairs, homes for veterans, special license rates for veterans, keep paying for veterans who come back from service and ask for more care . . . not that I think they don’t deserve it, I’m just saying that you really should be careful and think things through a bit before you make your comments. If a rigger quits, there is no further benefits. So why should there be benefits for military personnel? You chose your profession. You chose to enlist. Your wife or partner chose to be with you. Why should you receive special privileges?
      Maybe take a look at what your profession continues to ask for before condemning rigger families for only wanting a bit of understanding.

  • Haley

    so long story short, never make conversation with these women. Got it.

  • curious

    How do you pronounce your child’s name? Is it similar to how you pronounce mail?

  • Katie’s Vagina

    This is fucking pathetic and hilarious at the same time…North Dakota has to be a cultural shithole.

  • Akir

    I feel like nobody would say any of these things and if they did there’s no reason to be so offended and rude. A lot of these things apply to many different jobs and the other women don’t have a stick up their butt about it. Relax! A lot of these phrases are basically automatic responses people give because it sounds like the right thing to say and not cause they actually give a shit about what your husband does. Michael Moore and al gore are basically a joke to anyone and I doubt you ever heard someone bring them into a conversation.

  • ColoradoFracWife

    This puts a smile on my face! Thanks for posting it! My husband hasn’t been a frac mechanic for long but recently he’s been gone more than he’s been home! Coming across all of these blogs in support of OFM and Wives is a breath of fresh air!

  • Jen

    I usually don’t add my two cents into conversations like this but I just couldn’t help myself. It doesn’t matter what type of job someone has, if they are away for any amount of time it’s still hard for the family and for the one who is away. Regardless if its in the oil field, military, or even business trips, the family still misses and worries about them. It seems like its some type of competition these days about how much you miss your significant other. Instead of sticking your nose in the air when someone mentions that their spouse has “only” been gone for a couple of days, you should offer support. It’s never easy saying goodbye no matter the amount of time.