Relationships suffer in this industry and it takes a strong person to hold it down in our lives. There are many divorces and broken homes around me. Every day I meet the pilot that pays spousal and child support and is just frustrated with life and where he is. I think this is many of us. We bring our flight bags as well as our personal life frustrations to work with us. The unhappiness and stress in some of our lives is just out of control. The flight attendant that has the attitude nine out of ten times is frustrated about something that has nothing to do with me and you. To be away from home and not be able to clear the air with a love one has to be painful. Yes, there are phone calls, email and text messaging but sometimes two people need to talk to one another face to face so more than words can be shared. The need of a hug and the removal of a tear can release something that a phone call can never do.
Our personal lives suffer. There is no way to sugar coat it. You have to try really hard and put in a lot of time. A phone call may not happen every day from a loved one. Our entire day is scheduled and when a flight is delayed or a change occurs it throws everything off balance. There are so many rules and regulations that cover our rest period and how long we can fly each day. We have no control when we enter the terminal.
We are paid to be away from home, family and friends. When we are home no money is being made. This industry does have its ups and downs and this is just one of them. I would personally love to be home Saturday for lunch with my girlfriends and a nice dinner date or even a night on the town. I would love to see my mother every Mother’s Day but that will not happen. It’s just a balancing act that can cause stress, strain and devastation to any relationship if we are not careful.
Now I pose the hard question to myself: “Would I trade this career?” No, I would not. I know I am not the best with placing phone calls on the road or remembering those special days. As long as I have my crack berry, I can try and pull it together. LOL! I am not upset and I do not regret my career choice. I can just try my best to communicate with my family and friends more often.
P.S. If you have ever wondered why so many pilots and flight attendants date and marry one another, this is why……
Smooches from the jumpseat,