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Hi all,

I'm soo glad I found this forum!! Reading your comments has helped me feel so much less alone. No one I know ITRW has any idea about "oilfield relationships" & my girlfriends think I'm crazy to be dating a guy who's gone so much!

I've been with my guy for a year now - we're not actually married, but I feel that is where we're heading sooner than later. He works offshore internationally & is on rotation (thankfully!) being gone for a over month & home less than one (about 60/40) I love him to bits, but the separations are sooo hard.

All the "long-distance relationship" books I've read talk about sending stuff in the mail, staying connected by phone or webcam. Not options for me (can't call him - email only & slowww Internet).

Any of you have wisdom to share? I really want to make this work. So does he, but I need to figure out how to stay close & not go off the deep end when he goes away to work.

Thanks for all your insight.

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Replies to This Discussion

HEY THERE! Hope you're having a great weekend! Listen Dear, I don't proclaim to be the brightest star in the sky, but I do know that i'd rather have a little bit of something, than a whole lot of nothing! :-) It's better to have someone around that you REALLY LOVE, even if it's for a short while, than not to have them in your life at all~~~~So you keep on loving your man, and be thankful for every minute that the two of you have together....Just be proud that you have a good man that will work, and provide a good life for the both of you....In todays time, that is a hard thing to find! I'm not going to tell you that being away from them gets any easier as time goes on....Because it don't!
So i'm not going to paint you any pretty pictures.....But your love for one another will make it bearable! Take Care, and Good Luck To You Both~~~~

My husband works offshore Nigeria on a rotational schedule. He has been doing it for two years. And recently learned he is going to to do it for about two more years. I totally know what you are going through. We started dating long distance. I moved to be by him, and then less than year after we were finally in the same city he took his current assignment. I think I have felt every emotion possible, so it's normal if you are feeling a range of emotions. I think you will soon learn the cycle of emotions you go through during the hitch he is gone. And then there is sometime a challenge to reconnect when he returns which can be a challenge too. And yes the communications typically suck. In Nigeria the unions will shut down the servers and then I cannot talk to him at all. I really believe it takes a special woman to go through this. I think you made a good idea joining this group. I have been trying to find some women to empathize with, because like you said most of your girlfriends have no idea what its like to do this. I luckily work for the same company as my husband, and they say the at home rotational assignment is one of the hardest positions to be of all the different type of assignments oilfield people can go on. Feel free to email me if you need to vent.

Take Care,
Thanks Marla,

Wow - that's a huge amount of trust and adaptability on your part, to move to be with him only to have him end up being away 1/2 the time! How do you stay in touch with your husband? Do you have a routine for talking (when the unions aren't on strike!)? It's the randomness and the passivity that are really killing me!

Not sure I understand what you mean when you say "the at home rotational assignment is one of the hardest positions to be of all the different type of assignments oilfield people can go on". Do you mean your position working @ home?

As for emotional cycle, when he leaves I know that go through at least 4 stages - numb (can't believe he's gone), then angry (why did he go!?), then avoidance (keep busy, don't think, don't look at the calendar), finished up with anticipation (he's coming home in xx days, I must clean EVERYTHING). The 4 stages of NAAA ;). He's far better at switching off when he goes to work, I'm envious that he can do that, but when he does, I feel quite a bit more alone as I don't feel I can vent to him too much & damage his cool & I don't want to come across as the emotional female!

Right now, I'm having a hard time switching over from the anger to the avoidance stage (probably because I haven't spoken to him since he left almost 2 weeks ago!) Any tips for staying in the right head space - please! :)


Well LIW, as far as books on long distance relationships go, I guess they don't cover the oilfield life, or at least as far as I know. Guess some one needs to write a book for that,lol. A group like this can really help. I can sympathize with you on the phone calls and emails being the only communication. When my husband and I were dating he was in Afghanistan with the Army. We had meet on his two weeks leave home and then he went back overseas for six months.I remeber checking email any chance I got or pouncing on the phone when it rang. It was the longest six months of my life. Best thing I could hear was when he called and said he had landed back on US soil and that I better be on my way to pick him up. He works seven and seven now and his rig is only three hours from home so I can't imagine how you feel with your man being gone for a month like he is. I can say you have found a great support here with these ladies in this group. Whether their man works 7/7, 14/14, or 60/40 like yours they all understand the life with a man in the oilfield.
It's tough with them being gone all the time. My husband and I have 2 kids (4yr old daughter & 7 mo old son) and it's really hard to see him go. We take lots of pics though, and endless phone calls. We've been together over 4 yrs and have been married over a year. I'll tell ya this much... if you both want it to work then it will!! Simple as that, just have to find something to occupy your time with while he's away.
My husband works offshore in the GOM and is on a 3 week rotation. We have two small (2 yrs and 5 months) kids and I work full time for an offshore drilling company as well. I won't lie, it is tough at times. We make the best of the time he is here and talk when we can while he is gone. I don't know if your sig. other has a laptop with internet service, but Skype has been wonderful for us. I can call my DH even though he can't always answer and leave him a voicemail or have our daughter sing to his voicemail. He can call me before he goes on hitch and when he gets off. We email regularly. I try to take tons of pics of the kids and get them uploaded to our shared photo site so he can watch them grow.

It is hard and some hitches are harder than others, but we have been doing it for almost 3 years and we have it down. I think it helps that I am also in the business. While he is gone, I keep in touch as much as I can and just try to stay as busy as I can.

Good luck!
I have been married to my husband for 14 years and we have 3 children and he is gone about 6 months out of the year. We call a lot, text and e-mail when we are able. Just stay loyal and trust him, and you will make it just fine.

The Kuntry Girl http://safetyman-oilfieldwork.blogspot.com/
it is very true.. i used to livein pa and it seems the girls there are very thrilled to have our big brave guys.. ive been married to john for 7 years and we have 3 wonderful children. he has every reason to come home and it is my duty as his wife to keep it that way.. the temptations are out there and the feelings of our husbands are real, rigs are lonly places.. be ever so careful to love them, to fulfill all their needs and remember that you are the glue that holds your family together.. be the most loveable wife and no matter how cunning the .... is youll be the one he will come home to.. read the love dare it is a great book that helps us all to love deeper.

Yeah they have 2 homes. Besides the distance gives you something to look forward to when he walks through that door. You just want to eat him up! Missing him is the hardest part. And managing the kids keeps you on your toes, let him take over when hes home I always say,lol. I have 5 kids. Half our married life he's been gone on the rigs. "His other wife" as he puts it,lol. That *itch! lol. We've been married 17 wonderful years. We just talk about when he retired how much fun we will have, I told him I dont know I wont be able to get rid of you for the other half of the year,lol not really I gives us something to look forward to. This job is so dangerous, but what job isnt.


Most of the time but then I sit back and rethink what he is doing for his family, its just as hard for them is it is for us. SACRIFICES... He does it for me and the children. He misses us terribly as we do him.
Hi there.
My husband has worked overseas in Suadi Arabia on a jack up rig for almost 5 years. They have horrible internet connections and they used to have in room internet but the union or in his words "those stupid Egyptians" took it away. Emails have basically gone down the drain since then and sending him pictures have too because he has to use public rig computers now which they keep histories on and monitor (just FYI).
Times are hard and we used to go several days without talking and when he is gone for almost 40 days it does become hard especially when some days dealing with work and kids I miss him and his help so badly I just want to cry. BUT he got a prepaid "Suadi" phone and now he sends me texts throughout the day and calls me at least 3x a week. It may sound silly but when I wake up I immediately check my cell phone to see if he sent me a good morning text. This is the next best thing to actually telling me this every morning and it makes me feel closer to him.
However, when I reply back to his "Saudi" phone my cell phone provider does charge me international rates so the phone bill can become rather expensive and if this would be a problem if you cared, but we don't :).

Hopefully this is something that may help you. And just remember that he will come home eventually and during his time off the world is a better place.


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