22 answers

Husband Going to Be an OTR Truck Driver.... I Don't Want That Life!

When my husband and I got together, he was a local truck driver, and I knew when we first got together that he loved driving trucks. Recently he has decided to take a job driving Over the road where he'll be gone for WEEKS at a time. His training period is supposed to be SIX weeks. We have 2 small children,(our son is 3 and our daughter will be 2 in April) and I feel like he's abandoning me and the kids to go "live his dream". While I am glad he is getting this opportunity. I can't help but feel resentful towards him because he gets to go out and enjoy his life and see the country while I stay here and do the hard work in raising his children. I know I'm being selfish about this, but I don't think I have the strength to be a truck driver's wife. Our kids are very close to him, and I fear that our kids will also begin to resent him for being gone all the time. Our daughter is very reluctant about spending time with people she doesn't see very often, and I'm afraid that by the time she starts to trust him when he comes home, he'll be leaving and she'll never be able to trust him. I feel angry because I'm the one who has to explain to our son every night why daddy's not coming home, and why daddy's not here to tuck him into bed, and why he's not here to play in the bath with them, etc. I just feel a lot of anger towards him right now. I don't know that I can be happy like this. I am going to basically be living the life of a single mother. I hate this whole idea. We've been together for 6 years and haven't spent more than 4 or 5 nights apart in all that time. Am I completely insane for feeling this way?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, he leaves tomorrow morning to go on the road. I just want a normal life. One where my husband is home with me every night. He talked to the trainer today, and he'll be gone the full 6 weeks. :( What's worse is when the trainer gets to go home and spend time with his family, my husband has to go with him and stay in a hotel where the trainer lives. I think that's WRONG! He has to stay in a hotel while this guy gets to go home and see his wife and spend time with his kids. The worst part is that the trainer won't (even though he's through our area every day) drop my husband off so he can come home to be with us when he goes home. I am absolutely appauled by this! What kind of crap is that????

Featured Answers

My father drives for ABF and he loves it but there are no little ones at home.. I am a safety director for a Trucking Company here in Dayton and my guys are always home on the weekend.. i also have local guys that work 7 a.m.-6-7 p.m. Unfortunatly if he is just starting out there is not a big choice because most companies like mine you have to have 2 years experience.

Good Luck.. But you both need to agree..... you will resent him if you dont agree.

More Answers

Hi S.,
I feel your pain :-) My husband is a pilot..he was gone all but 4 days in January and won't be home until the 25th this month and I have 3 under 4. I guess it is what it is..but more than anything I have some suggestions for making time go by. My oldest one has a little book that we write the date in and then she draws or writes an event from the day..so when he gets home she can share it with him. We also have a computer with a web cam..and he has one for his laptop so we talk to him over the computer every day. If he had a laptop, and you had wireless internet...there are a lot of places including truck hubs, airports, coffee shops, and most hotels etc that he can connect to when hes away so he has internet access and can talk to us. Also, we make an effort to spend 1 day a week with his family so that they aren't excluded since hes gone-b/c naturally we spend more time with my parents. Before my husband leaves, I have him read a few childrens books on tape (we have a tape recorder) and then when the kids miss him we put a "book on tape" on for them to listen to and they can hear his voice. And most of all get a good routine. I work but after work we have an activity, cook dinner together but when my kids were younger I would give them play do, or have them cut soft veggies with plastic knives, stir food etc, so that we are all together doing family time, eat watch 1/2 hour of TV and then talk to dad baths stories and bed. My kids go to bed around 7-7:30 and this give me time to unwind and do the things that I like to do so that even if I am lonely i feel somewhat fulfilled b/c I am doing something for myself (Iguess that's my way of being selffish) I hope that some of these ideas work for you if he continues this job and you are home by yourself. Good luck and you will get used to it. Before you know it you will have your own routines and then when he comes home he won't follow them and it will send your house into hysteria! I always laugh when my husband is home b/c bed times are crazy, quick baths turn into bubbles on the wall, hour bubble baths, dessert after bath, 20 books for bedtime..but thats what makes it special when he is home.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi..First I must reassure you that you are not alone. My husband is also a truck driver. He was doing OTR, but now he is doing a regional account which keeps him away from home all week. He gets home late on Friday night and leaves again on Sunday mornings. I am a SAHM of our 6...yes six kids. I also felt alot of the same feelings you did, being abandoned, resentment, and feeling like I was doing all the work raising HIS children. I live in Columbus, and would love to be a support person for you if you would like. If you are interested just give me a shout on here or you can email me personally at ____@____.com. I look forward to hearing back from you, and PLEASE HANG IN THERE, IT GETS BETTER TRUST ME

You are scared and that is normal, you are looking at a major change in lifestyle. Give it time, get a new routine. You may find it is easier with him gone most of the time. Give it time, if it is that bad you and your husband can re-evaluate the decision later. He may find that he hates being away from all of you. Good Luck.

I am not in your position, but maybe can help you to look at some other views. For instance do you need this job to make the bills and such? I know there are always 2 sides to every story, but this is a little hard to handle. My husband was gone all week (home some weekends) for a little over a year. This was not his usual job. I really hated it, but knew it was temporary and we needed the income at that time. I have to say that I did adjust to the lifestyle, but it isn't the the way I would have wanted to continue to live. I am not trying to persuade you into doing anything, except talk to your hubby, with this response. I love my husband very much, but I didn't want that life for me or my children. I really understand how you feel and urge you to maybe make a compromise. One I can think of is maybe you will agree to him he can go on the road for lets say 1-2 years when your children are in school and it isn't so hard on you. Honestly though, if you both can't compromise and you aren't willing to live this way, you don't have many options. I wish you the best of luck!

S. I think this is normal. My husband and his uncle have recently started their own buisness and starting this spring he is going to be out of town for weeks at a time. I feel thew same way. He is living his dream but I feel abandon. I am pregnant with my fourth child and dont want to go through this alone. I know it will confuse my children. There are night that is work late now and they dont understand why he is not here when they go to bed. I am not sure of any advise to give you but I can tell you that I think the way you are feeling as pretty normal. I feel the same way.

I agree with the other ladies. You should have a say in what happens. It ISN'T fair for him to leave you with two young children so he can live out his dream. There is always going to be a need for OTR drivers, so what's the harm in putting that dream off for a little while? At least until the kids are maybe school-age? If he's so close to his children, how could he even consider a job like this during their most formative years? These are the precious moments you can't get back. If you miss them, that's it. Sounds like you two have a lot of talking to do. If you can't come up with a reasonable solution together, perhaps you should have a third, uninvolved, party enter into the picture, such as a pastor or counselor. Good luck. Update us and let us know what is decided.

My father drives for ABF and he loves it but there are no little ones at home.. I am a safety director for a Trucking Company here in Dayton and my guys are always home on the weekend.. i also have local guys that work 7 a.m.-6-7 p.m. Unfortunatly if he is just starting out there is not a big choice because most companies like mine you have to have 2 years experience.

Good Luck.. But you both need to agree..... you will resent him if you dont agree.

Oh S., I know how you feel. My husband became an otr truck driver 7 years ago after 24 years of a good marriage. He loves it too. But I felt abandoned, we had a 16 year old son, and a 15 year old son and a 4 month old baby girl.
Yes, I did have help with my sons, but I also had teenager headaches galore plus an infant.
I can tell you that it does get better with some time and the pay was very good.
My husband got hurt unloading the trailer and has not worked for three years now, and I love having him home. I hope I can be strong enough when he does go back to work on the road.

MANY trucking companies have dedicated routes for their drivers and this means that they work all week away from home but they are are HOME on the weekends.

Discuss this route with your husband and tell him to look around at the companies. I know Swift Trucking does this.

He is still gone but he is home every weekend instead of gone for 3 weeks at a time. He will miss so much of his kids growing up if he is gone so much.
Oh and a note, it may be his dream but it is hard work too. And he may just be wanting to provide a better life, financially for his family. Support him but let him know your feelings too. Good luck dear one.

Hi my name is S. and my husband has been driving truck for 10 years now. He is driving for a very good company now. At Thanksgiving he called me and asked me what I thought about him staying on the road for about 2 weeks at a time so I thought ok more money for Christmas, then he added another week and then another. Now he is bringing home 1000.00 a week which he only keeps 200.00 and gives me the rest and I do get that every Thursday. Our 9 year old daughter calls him 3+ times a day and knows all she has to do is pick up the phone and call him. At first I thought it was a bad idea being gone like that but I seem to get more done like this my house stays cleaner i can go shopping and do all the things i need to do without any hassel, yes i do get lonely at night but when he is home ( whick is 2 days for ever week he is out) we make the most of it and our relationship is so much better. So give it a try and see what happens. And dont be jelouse cuz you THINK he is seeing the country, cuz he isnt. He will be driving different hours of the day and night and when you have all of that weight on the back of that trailor that last thing you are thinking about is how pretty the landscape is. I go with my husband from time to time and I love the time we get to spend with each other, but there really isnt any sites to be seen. My hubby goes by the white house and the washington monument but hasnt been able to SEE them cuz of the traffic. Once he unloads he has to hurry to reload somewhere else, and there really isnt any time to sit and site see. To be honest i think i enjoy life more than he does. They work their butts off to support us. So stand by your man and support him, he will need it cuz he is contantly thinking about those kids and you as well as work. If you want to chat more my email address is ____@____.com email me anytime.

S.

Well, this is a hard situation. But the main thing you have to remeber is that he is finding a way to better provide for his family. Have you checked to see how long he will have at home before his next trip, usually they get to come home for longer periods of time than local truck drivers and make really good money in the process. He is not abandoning you or the kids, he is doing his best to give you a good life. I took a job that takes me from home 3 nights a week and 2 days.. and soon it will be 4 days and 4 nights (the reason for this choice is actually the oposite in this family, my husband is going back to college and has worked 2 part time jobs to keep up the bills plus my full time job, and we still can't make it now my new job will pay ALL the bills, provide insurance and life insurance on all of us, and allow my husband to stay home and study plus be with our little girl) its HARD on both of you. But money unfotinatly is a very important thing in this world. This will allow you to be a stay at home mom and when he gets home you may even have a little extra cash to hire a baby sitter for a night and go spend some real quality time with your husband. Make sure he calls everynight before bed time to attend to his fatherly nightly routine of love for the kids (not to mention you). A little time apart can actually strengthen a relatioship,(I know it has ours) like the old saying goes "Absence makes the heart grow fonder" Have the kids make him things while he's gone, cards and projects (it will help them feel more connected with daddy and miss him just a little less)... mark on the calender when he will return and plan a special family dinner to welcome your brave wanderer home. And remeber, this can be good time for YOU as well. Take up a hobby to do when the kids go to school or down for a nap. Everyone needs personal time hun and believe me eventually it will seem normal for him to not return home a few nights. It will just make it all the more special when he does. And by the time he gets back you will have had time to find something out about yourself you are strong and capable, you can be independent and men love independent women (in my experence). But there is always the aturnitive, just tell him it's to hard and force him to give up his dream... he will be home more but probally will not be the same guy he'd have been if he got to follow his dreams. Who know, maybe in the end if he takes this job he will find the time away to hard on himself and return a wiser man?

S.,
Take a deep breath! I can tell you that being a single mother, (even if it was for a short time) is no easy. You have to sit down with him and tell him exactly how you feel. Explain to him what you feel it will do to your children. I am here for you always!

i think that he is not doing this for him but for all of you .your a family. It concerns a better life for all of you. Being a single parent is rough and he seems like to great of a guy to let go of .I wish i would of had a man like that,when my kids grew up.

here is is from the childs point of view my father was a truck driver gone for weeks at a time. But the thing is I was truly proad of my father. And sometimes he took us with him. I always thought it was so neat and that hehad to be so smart to know what all those buttons and gears did. Talk to your children and see what they have to say about daddy. You never know it may surprise you.

My husband is leaving to do the same thing on the 24th. His training will only be 2 weeks, but then he is gone right after that. I don't know how I am going to be able to manage it, but for us this is what he needed to do. Our plans are for him to do OTR for a year to get the experience(besides he has to stay with the company for a year cause they are paying for his training). Then after a year find a job that is more local. I'm not looking forward to, we have 3 kids (4,2, and 7 months) and they are all close to him. But we thought it would be better now then later. I think our suitations are a little different, but I do understand how you feel. I agree with the previous person. Have you talked to him about this and told him how you feel? If we did not feel like we have to do this we wouldn't. Is this something he needs to do or just wants to? Cause if that's the case I would feel just like you do and wo7uld have a big problem with it. Just let him know how you feel. Hope it all works out. N.

Hi,

You are not crazy to be angry and upset. This sounds like a decision that your husband made on his own. You both certainly need to spend a lot of time making a decision like this together. Tell him exactly how you are feeling, point out the impact this will have on his family, you and the children. Maybe he could agree to do this in a few years when the children are older, especially if it is a change he is wanting to do for financial reasons. It is very difficult to be a single mom, more so when they are so young still. I recently encouraged my husband to take a job out of state so that we could relocate closer to family. It was much harder than I thought to be a single mom of two (5 and 2) and I only lasted a month. My husband was miserable on his own anyway, and we are both happy that he is back. I guess what I am saying is that unless there are really urgent reasons that this has to happen now see if he can wait to "follow his dream" until it is a dream you can all relate to. Good luck!

If you look at the bottom of your question in the area that say's "a little about me", this is what you put.....
I'm a 25 year old happily married mother of 2. My son is 3 years old, and my daughter will be will be 2 in April. (yes, they're rather close together in age) I'm married to the most wonderful man in the world. I couldn't ask for a better husband.
Seems to me you need to remember why it is you state you "married the most wonderful man in the world and the fact you couldn’t ask for a better husband." If you remember why it is you wrote those words, you then should be able to get through this situation.
You are NOT insane, just keep the lines of communication open and let him know how you feel. Life has a way or working itself out. GOOD LUCK!

I just noticed you post about your husband's decision to drive a truck over-the-road. I noticed that your post was back in November 2007. I was just wondering how it is going with you??? I feel extremely resentful toward my husband for making that mistake recently. He wanted me to be a team driver with him because he had heard that if I went along with him then we would be earning about $70,000 per year as a team driver... not true! As a single driver, he only earns .26 per mile. I initially agreed to be a team driver with him but when I heard that the training would be for six weeks, I decided not to continue. He has been driving now since January 2013 and has only been home twice. My four year old is very resentful toward his daddy. Now when my husband calls, my four year old refuses to talk with him on the phone. He says continually "I hate Daddy!" My family is now homeless because of my husband's decision because he quit his job, we were then evicted, plus, it took 3 months to drive on his own because there were delay after delays for some stupid reasons that do not make sense at all! My husband keeps blaming me for our situation when it was clearly HIS decision - not mine! We have four children that would have been abandoned had I decided to drive with him. I would've taken just my four year old because my other three children are older - but still, they are not on their own yet so it is still abandonment, I feel. And yes, his trainer was allowed to return home to his family but my husband wasn't. My husband constantly blames me telling me it's ALL my fault! I have been staying at a motel in Texas since December 21st with my four children. It really does feel like I am a single mother! I have been married to this man for almost thirty years this September. I think my husband has gone crazy!!!! I cannot be happy knowing that this is all I have to look forward to each day. I want sooooo badly to have the life that I had before he made this decision. His decision has had a lot of negative consequences.

*My hubby weighed in on this, read further down*
Me:
Many people have the wrong idea about marriage. It is NOT about the partners giving 50/50. It is about each marriage partner giving 100/100. That includes 100% of the vote for each person. Logistics, not just feelings, need to be gone over and justified.
My husband is a truck driver as well. Our daughter was approaching her first birthday when he trained and received his CDL. He held out for about a month until a local distributer offered him a position. That meant cutting corners for us.
You are in a different position. Your husband chose to take an OTR job. Unless it was for financial reasons, as OTR can pay better a lot of the times, this was selfish on his part. In no way are you being selfish for wanting your husband to be home instead of feeling that "he gets to go out and enjoy his life and see the country while I stay here and do the hard work in raising his children".
Him:
I think he is making a huge mistake. These companies make big promises and seldom live up to them. I'm sure he'll realize after it's too late that driving local was the better choice. There are plenty of regional carriers that would only require a few layovers during the week and home on weekends. He wouldn't have to go from being home everyday to never being home at all. There are happy-mediums aplenty. Perhaps when the children are older they would enjoy the occasional longhaul with dad, but this time in their lives is vital that they have their dad fulltime. It would be a real shame to look back in 10-15 years from now and kick yourself knowing you chose to abandon your family for some boyhood fantasy.
Us:
Try making a video or taking some pics of the times dad is missing to encourage him to be at home. You've got some great ammunition from another mom and a truck driver, we hope it works well for your family.
R&R

Ok, I get that you love him, but don't you get a vote? It isn't what you want, so you need to say so in no uncertain terms. You need to let him know your reasons as well, firmly but not shreiking either. If he loves you like you love him, than he will understand and at least put it off until the kids are older. Make yourself heard.

My life is very much like Krista K's life! My husband is also a pilot, and is currently on a 19 day working, then 8-9 days off schedule. He was also gone for training for almost 2 months when our daughter was only 5 months old. Plus, we don't have any family here. So, I feel very much like a single mom when he is gone. In the beginning it was really hard, especially during training. After a few months it got easier, and I got into a routine. We also have a computer with a webcam at home, and a laptop for my husband so we can talk and see each other when he has internet access. He also has a cell phone, and we talk several times a day. Communication is key.

The biggest question I have for you, is how many days is he actually going to be gone/home at a time? Some over the road trucking companies have their drivers out for a month or more at a time, and some are home every week. Since he really wants to do that, maybe he can look for a job where he is home more often. You definitely need to talk to him about how you feel and how you think it will effect your kids. Sit down and have a calm discussion with him, and let him know you are afraid it will affect your marriage.

If you both agree that he should still do the OTR driving, then set up a routine, make sure you have great communication- even more important when your spouse is gone than it normally is, and do as much of the things that Krista is doing with your own kids. Also, it helps if he is anywhere within driving distance while he is on the road to take the kids and go see him sometimes. I do that sometimes, and my husband really appreciates that.

If you both decide that he shouldn't do the OTR driving, try to see if there are any driving jobs in the area that he would really enjoy. If you tell him that you don't want him to do it and he still does, then do the best you can, give it your best effort for a few months, and then let him know how it is going at that point.

Best wishes.

Tell him how you honestly feel. I was stupid and went along with my husband when he decided to join the service. He was gone for months at a time then home for a few months and so on. It was HORRIBLE! On top of my sadness, my kids were sad too. My oldest child regressed severly the second time daddy left. Our marriage almost ended on multiple occasions. Our oldest daughter didn't know who daddy was everytime we were reunited. It was too much and I regret never telling him how I really felt. I was very resentful too. Even now he mentions missing it and my insides just boil.

I don't blame you. There is no way this would work for me! I can see this destroying your marriage. You need to put your foot down and tell him this isn't a job he can have while you have small children.

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