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  • advice needed on oversees gig

    Hi all - I'm new to this forum, but am hoping to get some advice. I am the wife of a cop with 15 years on the job. We have three small children (2,4 & 6). Recently, my hubby applied to work in Afghanistan for a year as an international police trainer (contract work - 13 mos. in the sandbox). He's focused on the money (just shy of $120,000, tax free). We've taken some financial blows in the past year, and he feels this would set us up and put us back on the path to financial stability. I've brought up (several times) that this may not be a good idea -for our family, and for us. To be honest, as it gets closer to the time he would leave for training (he received a conditional offer of employment last weekend), I'm feeling pannicky and stress like I've never experienced. Unfortunately, I can't seem to get through to him the reality of how this will affect us. Any thoughts, advice or comments are welcome. I don't know if I should just suck it up, as this seems to be something he really needs/wants to do, or if I should become more forceful in my objections to this.

    Thanks in advance for all replies.
    "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

    If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
    sigpic

  • #2
    Ultimately how you feel about this is how you feel about this, not how anyone on this message board can tell you to feel.

    Others may be able to tell you more details about what he may be getting into over there, but the decision is between you and your husband. It sounds like you've expressed worry, but he wants to do this to save your family financially. If he isn't concerned about the other issues: 1)leaving you alone to care for three young children, 2) possibility of being injured on the job- which, if you think about it, is inherent in the police officer's daily job anyway, so perhaps he doesn't see this as much different than if he were still here... 3) how your marriage will survive long distance, which I am sure you are thinking about...

    If he isn't worried about those things, but you are, I think you guys need to sit down. If you completely don't want him to go, and you think it is going to end your marriage, you need to speak up before he goes. You need to make your objection heard. My guess is he isn't fully aware of your worries about this... If you go along with the plan and just sort of mildly protest, without fully discussing the ramifications of this, you just might find yourself alone and miserable in a short time while he is working overseas.

    But, if you are open to him going, knowing the risks, but you just have worries about your marriage, something as simple as a good conversation where you two sit down and talk about all the issues at hand may help to dissuade some of your fears.

    Once he's there, I don't think you'll have the opportunity to change your mind and ask him to come home...

    Comment


    • #3
      Another consideration is the status of his police job when he returns. Many departments do not allow a leave of absence for a second job. Also, $120K sounds like a lot of money, but it really isn't when the costs may be permanent disability (or worse) and the physical and emotional security of his family. 15 years as a cop puts him in the mid life crisis age and that may be more of a motivator than the money, but you need to get all of this cleared up soon.
      Jerry
      "If all else fails, stop using all else!"

      Comment


      • #4
        agreed 100 %




        Originally posted by jerrymaccauley View Post
        Another consideration is the status of his police job when he returns. Many departments do not allow a leave of absence for a second job. Also, $120K sounds like a lot of money, but it really isn't when the costs may be permanent disability (or worse) and the physical and emotional security of his family. 15 years as a cop puts him in the mid life crisis age and that may be more of a motivator than the money, but you need to get all of this cleared up soon.
        ''Life's tough......it's tougher if you're stupid.''
        -- John Wayne

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for the input - no, his job has said they will not give him a leave while he's doing this - which is another reason I'm not crazy about this. He would be coming back with no job. He thinks that while he's over there, he would be able to network with the guys there to find somewhere better to work. He's very unhappy working for his current department (which I think is part of where this stems from too). I'm definitely going to sit down with him tonight for a heart-to-heart. Thanks again for all the insight.
          "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

          If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
          sigpic

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by cgh6366 View Post
            Thanks for the input - no, his job has said they will not give him a leave while he's doing this - which is another reason I'm not crazy about this. He would be coming back with no job. He thinks that while he's over there, he would be able to network with the guys there to find somewhere better to work. He's very unhappy working for his current department (which I think is part of where this stems from too). I'm definitely going to sit down with him tonight for a heart-to-heart. Thanks again for all the insight.

            mid life crisis- he's seeking a end to a "slump" by doing something "different and daring"- just had a good friend "re enlist" after being out of the Army for nearly 20 yrs (yup he's 39) and he's leaving behind his wife son,and two daughters,as well as his Police job to go to Iraq.Tell your husband "NO" period-he's got too many responsibilities at home-this would be different if you guys were a younger couple and could take risks-he could go off around the world and you could do the college thing,but like I said this is different.if you have to downsize,to make up for the losses ,do it.Maybe move farther out where its cheaper,or the hubby has to work more OT-but going to a combat zone to make $$ is not worth it.
            "we're americans ! We don't quit because we're wrong, we just keep doing it wrong UNTIL it turns out Right"...

            Comment


            • #7
              I did something similar a decade ago (time flies). The up side was it was Bosnia (meaning Europe, and the war had ended), I was single, and 10 years later I am really seeing the financial benefits. At the time, the money was actually not as good as I thought it would be, but after a decade past, I really see the benefits of having gotten out of debt and even a small headstart on my savings.

              The counterpoint, now that I am older, a husband, a father, etc., I would not dream of doing it today. A couple of my colleagues in Bosnia left behind young families, and their motivation was that 1 year of sacrifice would remove a ton of financial worries. Because I did that while single, I can stand back now and say I would not do it again, but I am not faced with the same motivation as these other guys were. In hindsight, I believe they made the right choice back then, but that was a different time.

              If you are dead set against it, make that clear. If you can see the financial benefits, and believe they would be real and lasting, consider it. Being close to 40, having to quit the PD is a moderate issue. On the one hand cop jobs are available, but if it meant taking a pay cut, that may destroy the financial benefits of going overseas.

              Comment


              • #8
                Ditto, what DOACop38 said.

                After 30 years as a cop, If I were single, I would go...but...I'm married for a second time, with a nine y/o daughter and 3 y/o boy/girl twins. It wouldn't be right for them. At 50 years old, the romance and adventure of foreign lands and intrigue are meant for men without family ties, or at least grown kids. The families in the military have no choice. Your family does.

                If there are financial setbacks, and his job won't let him go for a year, he would be best to get the advice of a financial counselor, to learn how you as a family can fix whatever is wrong. He could find ways at home, too, to supplement his income with non LE off-duty, part-time employment.

                If he can't, or won't, take your input on this subject, then it's probably a good time to start seeing a marriage/family counselor.
                "You're never fully dressed without a smile."

                Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

                Three things I know for sure: (1) No bad deed goes unrewarded, (2) No good deed goes unpunished, and (3) It is entirely possible to push the most devoted, loyal and caring person beyond the point where they no longer give a 5h!t.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hi everybody I am new here currently living in Australia and have been reading up on a lot of posts.
                  I disagree with what has been said here.
                  I had the same opportunity after the end of the first "Desert Storm" 15/16 yrs ago.
                  The job was protecting the guys who were putting out the oil well fires.
                  My wife, then fiancee, said no dont go we're getting married soon.
                  I didn't go and I have felt like the situations that we have found ourselves in is because of me not going when I had the chance, and for a long time I felt a lot of resentment to her "because she stopped me from going".
                  The money was pretty much the same and it would have set us up quite nicely.
                  Don't nag your husband about going.
                  I'm pretty sure he has weighed up all the pros and cons of going into Afgan, he knows the risks involved.
                  He is doing this for YOU AND YOUR FAMILY. And as for not having a job to come back to with 15yrs on the job there are a lot of depts out there who would hire him in a heart beat.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    ^ I understand that you feel like she stopped you from doing something that may have helped your family...but do you think your marriage would have survived you doing a tour? it seems like the statistics on this aren't very good... did you have several young children at the time??

                    I understand you are putting a different perspective on it, but their situation is quite different than yours.

                    I think she's worried about the ramifications of ALL of this- the kids without a dad for x amount of time, the possibility that he'll be injured/killed, and whether their marriage is strong enough to survive a separation like this. We aren't talking living in another town 2 hours away, we are talking about a country being ripped apart by war.

                    And putting all this at stake for a little extra dough? I dunno, I don't think it's worth it. I wouldn't want my partner doing that.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thank you again for your responses. My husband and I had a loooong talk last night, and I'm hoping that we are now on the same page. I talked to him quite a bit about how this could affect our 6 year old son (who worships the ground he walks on), and I think it brought some reality to the situation for him. He is so terribly burned out with his current department, and I think this is playing a bigger role in his decision than I had anticipated.
                      Tristate: I appreciate your opinion - I think if we didn't have the kids, I would not be having the issues I do with him going to a war zone. I definitely would not want to be the only one standing in his way from doing what he wants to do (I'm sorry that happened to you - it must have been difficult in your relationship). However - when kids are involved, it's a whole different story - its not just my adjustment I have to worry about. I think that trying to give him the reality of what life would be like for me and the kids while he would be gone has helped him see it from a different perspective. When we talked last night, we decided to alter our financial situation in hopes of taking some of the pressure off, and I think this will help tremendously.

                      Thanks again for all your comments - I really appreciate it.
                      "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

                      If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
                      sigpic

                      Comment

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