Advice from police spouses for a successful marriage

Sometimes the key to a happy and successful marriage becomes known those who have been divorced and/or married more than once and learned from the situation

Plenty of sources say that police divorce rates are higher than other occupations, yet the research is lacking. Whether or not divorce is more prevalent among officers, and even though divorce may have a negative connotation, there is something of value to be derived from divorce for people who take time to learn about their former spouse, themselves or the situation the two created. Further, those who have never been divorced may be able to learn from other peoples’ experiences.

Healthy relationships are the most important factor in police work. Yes, you heard me correctly. Relationships with your spouse, partner or significant other are the most important relationships you can have. This is a relationship that is completely unique from any other relationship (at least, it should be). 

There are things you should share in these relationships that should not be shared or given to others freely, such as personal feelings, sex or emotional intimacy. When one chooses to share things with someone not considered a spouse, partner or boyfriend/girlfriend, this may be an indicator of other problems in the relationship. This is not to say that emotional or physical infidelities are necessarily relationship-enders, but such actions can hamper the special intimacy that should be shared with only your significant other. 

The following are factors that manybelieve are key to a happy and successful marriage or relationship — including verbatim quotes which cut to the quick of their knowledge and experience.  

Honesty, communication and understanding
Honesty and communication. “Without those, it’s hard to keep positive about your relationship.” 

No relationship is without disagreements or arguments, but do your best to fight fair. Don’t call names or say things out of anger to harm the other person. And definitely do not put hands on each other. Ask yourself whether this will become an issue in the future. Will I even remember it? If not, let it go. Be willing to apologize and willing to accept an apology without holding a grudge. “Never, never, never, stop caring, no matter the fight, no matter the discussion, no matter what.”

Togetherness and acceptance
“Laughter. We laugh a lot. That keeps our marriage strong. Life with a LEO has enough seriousness without taking each other too seriously.” Pray together and pray for each other and for your marriage. Accept each other, flaws and all. The things that bug you now will be what you will miss one day.

Be patient. Understand that holidays, birthdays and many special events will be missed. This is part of being a police spouse. Understand that your officer wants to be at these events as much as you want him or her there. Also realize that they must work to provide for their family. Most police spouses understand the demands of the job and most will tell you being a police wife or husband is not for the faint of heart. 

Be realistic.Understand that your lives may seem like ships passing in the night, but make sure to schedule time together. Respecting your spouse’s time to unwind and disconnect. “My husband needs at least an hour to change gears when he gets home form work. We keep things light and don’t bombard him with wants and needs during that time.” Marriage brings two people together, but you are still individuals and each of you need to have time apart to do things that you like to do. Flexibility is essential is making things work. Don’t withhold sex. Of course there will be times when you are both tired, but try to make time for sexual intimacy. This is a gift for both of you and it is essential to not only keep your relationship healthy, but to keep temptations away. 

Each and every relationship is as unique as the individuals in it, but never underestimate the importance of your marriage or relationship. This relationship is a lifeline between the two of you, and this bond should provide the comfort needed on some of the tough days you will encounter. 

Your significant other is your backup at home and you are theirs. Don’t ever forget what truly matters and let go of the things that are not important. Anything worth having is worth investing quality time into. 

Remember, in police training you are taught to never give up. The same mentality should apply to your marriage. Marriage in our day and age has lost the idea of forever. Fight for your spouse, fight for your marriage, and know that there will be good days and bad days, but know that each of you give it everything you have, each and everyday. 

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