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Thread: How do you make the most of opposite shifts?

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    #1

    How do you make the most of opposite shifts?

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    DH has been on nights since the beginning of Dec with no end in sight, and it is wearing on me. He leaves for work at about 8:30 pm, gets home about 9:00 am, and wakes up around 4:30.

    I work days so I am already gone when he gets home, and I work out after work so I get home between 4 and 5:30 depending on if I go to the gym.

    It's starting to wear on me and I'm beginning to feel sorry for myself (which I know is an attitude choice, which I am working on) and I don't want to let it go to far so I wondered if you ladies had any coping strategies for me, or suggestions? I think the most difficult aspects, for me, are the fact that we have no idea how long he will be on this shift (could be 2 weeks, could be a year) and the fact that my weekends are spent mostly alone now, since I can't wake him up until late afternoon. No matter how I try to stay up late with him I end up asleep by 10, or really cranky at work on Monday. I'm also having a lot of trouble falling asleep during the week after he leaves, which is wearing me out. And why I'm posting this now and should have been in bed an hour ago.

    Help? Advice?
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    #2
    No advice just tons of hugs
    This is honestly one of my nightmares. When DH was job searching, it was one of the stipulations I had: no night shift. Of course after he got hired they started talking about adding a 3rd shift to his company

    I hope your DH doesn't have to do this much longer. Hang in there!
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    #3
    DH was on nights for a while, both before we had kids and after we had Wyatt. He used to come home between 8-9a and he would stay up until 11 or 12 (I didn't work) then sleep until 5, sometimes a little later, and then spend a few more hours with me/us. It was rough and now that our command has changed hands, our CO doesn't allow guys with families (kids or just wives) to be on night shift unless it's an absolute necessity that they be there, which I appreciate a lot.

    We weathered through my entire third trimester with Wyatt on these shifts and it was god-awful. I hope he's off soon. I don't really have many tips at all, I can't imagine if I was working full time on top of him working nights
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    #4
    We were on opposite shifts for a while when I was working, and it was rough. I decided to treat it like a long-distance relationship in some ways. I wrote him letters, left him "care packages" in the kitchen sometimes, and made sure the times we were off (and awake) together were as meaningful as could be. It was frustrating because I worked from home so a lot of our time "apart" was spent in the same house, and it was tempting to force time together even though it wouldn't be positive or valuable because one of us should have been sleeping or working. We had to resist that temptation- quality is so much more important than quantity when your opportunities are limited.

    I hope you can find ways to make it work for you- it's not easy.
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    #5
    Opposing shifts is hard. DH and I did it for a little while when I was going to school and he worked nights at the hospital.

    No real advice since we ended up having him switch to days cause it was wearing on us. Just lots of and hang in there. You will get through this and it won't be forever
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    #6
    That's what DH and I are doing now. He's on nights. I work afternoons, but he's asleep all morning and occasionally after work. We try to make time to at least do dinner together, but it's hard.

    I occasionally work weekends & always work holidays so it's even harder to find time for us. Hang in there. It's not going to be easy, but you'll get through it!

    I say make plans for things in advance if you can. Occasionally DH and I will say something like "Hey. Next weekend, we'll both be up & about around this time and spend the day together." Usually it's dinner and a movie or something like that, but it helps take the edge off of not seeing each other hardly ever.

    I hate sleeping when DH is on nights. I have a hard time getting to sleep. Still getting use to the new house too.
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    #7
    My ex and i used to do this, i worked midnights from 730pm to 530 am and he was in class during the day. we made it work a little easier because i would wake up like a "normal" person on weekends so i would get home from work on sat am and sleep for a couple of hours but wake up at noon and then go to bed that night and then when it was time to go back to work tuesday i would wake up normal in the morning hang out for a couple of hours and then take a nap before work.
  8. "If you don't like my attitude, quit talking to me"
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    #8
    somehow we managed to conceive our oldest child while working opposite shifts.. so.. you can make it work

    Does your DH get any days off? If so, I would just use those days to reconnect. When we did opposites, hubs would come home as I was walking out the door. We had enough time to say 'Hi, love you' and a kiss. I was also going to school full time, so I'd leave at about 8:30, get home at 11pm.. he'd leave for work at about 10:30.. so we missed each other in the evenings.. there were one or two days a week that i didn't have late class so I was able to get home and we'd have dinner before he left for work. On his days off, if they matched with mine (he didn't always get weekends off like me) we'd spend that time watching movies, going out on a 'date', etc.

    My advice, skip working out after work and go when he goes to work. If you can get home by like 4/4:30 that will give you a good couple hours to hang out with him. Then when he leaves for work, go to the gym... or go to the gym before work. that way you are home when he is.

    There are 10 types of people in the world, those that understand binary and those that don't
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by rocket_lizz View Post
    No advice just tons of hugs
    This is honestly one of my nightmares. When DH was job searching, it was one of the stipulations I had: no night shift. Of course after he got hired they started talking about adding a 3rd shift to his company

    I hope your DH doesn't have to do this much longer. Hang in there!
    Thanks friend It's pretty rough, but I'm trying not to let it affect me too much! I hope they are all talk at your DH's company!

    Quote Originally Posted by KnittingGuamMama View Post
    DH was on nights for a while, both before we had kids and after we had Wyatt. He used to come home between 8-9a and he would stay up until 11 or 12 (I didn't work) then sleep until 5, sometimes a little later, and then spend a few more hours with me/us. It was rough and now that our command has changed hands, our CO doesn't allow guys with families (kids or just wives) to be on night shift unless it's an absolute necessity that they be there, which I appreciate a lot.

    We weathered through my entire third trimester with Wyatt on these shifts and it was god-awful. I hope he's off soon. I don't really have many tips at all, I can't imagine if I was working full time on top of him working nights
    That is so great that the CO is looking out for the families! I know we can get through it, and I am feeling much more positive about it this morning. Working helps me, I am a very independent person and working gives me purpose and keeps me from driving DH crazy.

    Quote Originally Posted by SingWeJoyous View Post
    We were on opposite shifts for a while when I was working, and it was rough. I decided to treat it like a long-distance relationship in some ways. I wrote him letters, left him "care packages" in the kitchen sometimes, and made sure the times we were off (and awake) together were as meaningful as could be. It was frustrating because I worked from home so a lot of our time "apart" was spent in the same house, and it was tempting to force time together even though it wouldn't be positive or valuable because one of us should have been sleeping or working. We had to resist that temptation- quality is so much more important than quantity when your opportunities are limited.

    I hope you can find ways to make it work for you- it's not easy.
    That's a great idea, the letters. I already planned to start 14 days of valentines tomorrow, leaving him a heart each day with something I love about him so that even though I don't see him in the morning we get a connection.
    Not waking him up is so hard, especially on the weekends. He's really good about getting his sleep, but it's so hard for me to not count down the minutes until he's gotten his 8 hours. I'm trying to find friends to hang out with or errands to do out of the house so I'm not tempted.

    Quote Originally Posted by CPANavyWife View Post
    Opposing shifts is hard. DH and I did it for a little while when I was going to school and he worked nights at the hospital.

    No real advice since we ended up having him switch to days cause it was wearing on us. Just lots of and hang in there. You will get through this and it won't be forever
    Thanks, hopefully it's not for long, and that has become our motto! It's not forever! And he's here, not deployed!

    Quote Originally Posted by Starsinthesky View Post
    That's what DH and I are doing now. He's on nights. I work afternoons, but he's asleep all morning and occasionally after work. We try to make time to at least do dinner together, but it's hard.

    I occasionally work weekends & always work holidays so it's even harder to find time for us. Hang in there. It's not going to be easy, but you'll get through it!

    I say make plans for things in advance if you can. Occasionally DH and I will say something like "Hey. Next weekend, we'll both be up & about around this time and spend the day together." Usually it's dinner and a movie or something like that, but it helps take the edge off of not seeing each other hardly ever.

    I hate sleeping when DH is on nights. I have a hard time getting to sleep. Still getting use to the new house too.
    Thanks girl, It's good to know I'm not the only one going through this! I'm sorry I never got a chance to hear how the rest of the girls night went without me! Between my emotions being drained all day with my students, and barely getting to see DH I haven't been the most social But I'm really glad I got to meet you guys for dinner! We are going on a date Saturday night when he wakes up, that should be helpful!

    Quote Originally Posted by *Blondie* View Post
    My ex and i used to do this, i worked midnights from 730pm to 530 am and he was in class during the day. we made it work a little easier because i would wake up like a "normal" person on weekends so i would get home from work on sat am and sleep for a couple of hours but wake up at noon and then go to bed that night and then when it was time to go back to work tuesday i would wake up normal in the morning hang out for a couple of hours and then take a nap before work.
    I have suggested that, me staying up later and him waking up earlier, but it's too hard for us to switch back during the week and we both end up more miserable. Thanks though

    Quote Originally Posted by TrishAFSpouse View Post
    somehow we managed to conceive our oldest child while working opposite shifts.. so.. you can make it work

    Does your DH get any days off? If so, I would just use those days to reconnect. When we did opposites, hubs would come home as I was walking out the door. We had enough time to say 'Hi, love you' and a kiss. I was also going to school full time, so I'd leave at about 8:30, get home at 11pm.. he'd leave for work at about 10:30.. so we missed each other in the evenings.. there were one or two days a week that i didn't have late class so I was able to get home and we'd have dinner before he left for work. On his days off, if they matched with mine (he didn't always get weekends off like me) we'd spend that time watching movies, going out on a 'date', etc.

    My advice, skip working out after work and go when he goes to work. If you can get home by like 4/4:30 that will give you a good couple hours to hang out with him. Then when he leaves for work, go to the gym... or go to the gym before work. that way you are home when he is.
    He does get the weekend off with me, and we try to make the most of that. I try my hardest to stay up a couple more hours with him, but it's like a curse. When he's not there I can't sleep, but when he is I fall asleep instantly. It's a comfort thing I guess. The thing with the gym is that he likes to get his work out time in too, and we are both much happier when we have that independent health building, so I am doing it when he is working out on his own anyway. We can't work out together. Just, we don't get along, and it doesn't work. But we are trying to do more things like go on walks together.
  10. "If you don't like my attitude, quit talking to me"
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    #10
    Ah, didn't know he was working out at the same time you were. I thought it was he was home and you were at the gym. What abaout changing the workout times.. Him right after work in the morning, and you either before work in the morning, or after he leaves for work? Just a thought.

    Its a phase or time that will pass. leave him an I Love You note that he can see when he wakes up. Just little gestures that tell him that are thinking of him, miss him, etc...

    There are 10 types of people in the world, those that understand binary and those that don't
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