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Dating someone with a different work schedule


Krankor

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I (M, almost 40) have been seeing a woman (almost 35) for about 2 1/2 months now. We made things "official" about a month ago. Things have gone very well.

 

Not long after we started dating I tore my achilles tendon and ended up having two surgeries to repair it. So I've been out of work since then while I recover.

 

Here's the thing; in a way, even though we haven't been able to go out and do much (we're both kind of homebodies anyway) me having nothing but time on my hands has left us kind of spoiled, as she can come see me whenever.

 

However, yesterday I got the green light from the doctor to return to work on light duty. Unlike my girlfriend, I don't work a traditional 9-5, Monday through Friday gig. I work overnights on a rotating 6 on, 3 off schedule with some pickups here and there. I end up with a full weekend off only about once a month; a partial weekend about once a month as well.

 

Today, she texted me "It's going to take some getting used to you going back to overnights." I texted back "Yeah, shouldn't be too bad though. You'll be working while I'm sleeping and I'll be working while your sleeping. We'll both be around in the evening." She answered that she was just worried about texting me at the wrong time and waking me up, which I told her not to worry about: texts don't wake me up. She answered back with how she wished she were in my arms right now and we flirted back and forth a bit, so it's all good.

 

However, I guess I am a slightly worried about how me having less time and fewer weekends may effect us. Moreover, though, I'm just curious: obviously, police, fire, EMS, medical personnel, etc don't always work traditional schedules. For you 9 to 5ers out there, would that be a problem? Would it be a deal-breaker if your partner worked evenings, overnights, and or most weekends?

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Does either of you have children? If not, it shouldn't be a problem, although it'll be a bit weird at first. You'll just get into a groove. I've managed relationships where I've never had a full weekend off work, ever, and I've also lived with a guy who worked shifts on a three-weekly basis. It's fine as long as you both want it to work.

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It sounds like you two simply aren't going to be the kind of [potential] couple who spends 4, 5 days a week with each other. Given it's early in, that's not really an issue right now, but it's definitely a consideration. For me, that'd be great. It takes the better portion of a couple years for me to give up more than three or so nights a week I'd have to myself. And after then is when I'm considering cohabiting anyway.

 

But nothing you've written hints to me that she's got a problem with it. Do you get the impression she's a bit on the more needy side?

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Does either of you have children? If not, it shouldn't be a problem, although it'll be a bit weird at first. You'll just get into a groove. I've managed relationships where I've never had a full weekend off work, ever, and I've also lived with a guy who worked shifts on a three-weekly basis. It's fine as long as you both want it to work.

She does have an 11 year old; she seems comfortable letting him spend a few hours by himself but not more than that.

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A lot of people have different schedules. Mine is 3 nights out away from home 4 nights in. It's a pain but it is what it is. Sometimes a day more here and there but always home on the weekends. It could be a lot worse. Military oil ect. At least it's just different hrs for you guys.

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It sounds like you two simply aren't going to be the kind of [potential] couple who spends 4, 5 days a week with each other. Given it's early in, that's not really an issue right now, but it's definitely a consideration. For me, that'd be great. It takes the better portion of a couple years for me to give up more than three or so nights a week I'd have to myself. And after then is when I'm considering cohabiting anyway.

 

But nothing you've written hints to me that she's got a problem with it. Do you get the impression she's a bit on the more needy side?

I'm the same way as you and enjoy my alone time. She seems fairly independent as well.

 

I am a little worried about it going too far the other way but given both of our personalities maybe it's better to err on the side of missing each other rather than getting tired of each other and feeling smothered.

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However, I guess I am a slightly worried about how me having less time and fewer weekends may effect us. Moreover, though, I'm just curious: obviously, police, fire, EMS, medical personnel, etc don't always work traditional schedules. For you 9 to 5ers out there, would that be a problem? Would it be a deal-breaker if your partner worked evenings, overnights, and or most weekends?

 

I'm in nearly the same position as she is, except for having had a couple of months to see him whenever I wanted. We're 30 and 34, Been seeing eachother about 2 1/2 months as well, but haven't made it "official" yet. I work a pretty flexible M-F 8-5. He works 4 days a week 7-7 overnights. We both work in opposite directions, so there's no chance for grabbing breakfast/dinner. As for how it will effect you, everyone/ every relationship will be different. I worried about it at first too, because it was different than anything I had done before. But for me personally, it hasn't been a problem. In fact, I like it. I find that I have time to spend with friends, family, him, go to the gym and take my dogs running, and have my alone time without feeling like I have to choose or miss out on any of those. Sure, there are definitely times that I wish I got to see him more, but overall I think it's really good for (me).

 

Also, he does have a daughter too. She's too young to leave alone, but she does go to bed pretty early. Have you met her son yet? Normally, I wouldn't have wanted to meet someone's kid(s) so early, but I knew him before we started seeing each other and I had already been around her, so that makes it easier.

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It depends on the person but it wouldn't bother me. My last serious long term relationship, my ex boyfriend was a professor and often taught night classes during the weekdays. I also worked the weekend shift which meant I was not free Saturday or Sunday from 9am --> 6pm. Surprisingly this worked perfect for us but we are both independent and were happy with the occasional full day off we both have which usually fell on a public holiday or a random Tuesday.

 

I've dated a doctor before for a few weeks and it was never an issue. My most recent ex was a journalist and often had to go to events after work, but that was also not an issue. It's easy to work around schedules when you know in advance what the schedule is. IF she's independent this might be good for your relationship in terms of setting a healthy pace. However, if she's the type that absolutely needs to see you 3-4 times a week, then this might be an issue, but personally, for me, I'd be cool with this situation.

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I was married to a fireman and I currently date someone who travels out of the country for days at a time.

Our only means of communication is emails. . . on a good day.

 

I am a little too independent for my own good at times, so these arrangements suite me well.

 

Here's the thing. This is the hand you are dealt and 2 months in it's time to see if you two can navigate this.

I get you feel anxious. This changes the game you two had on the onset of dating and now you are invested.

 

What other choice do you have? You are either a fit or you're not.

 

I seriously doubt either of you are changing jobs at anytime.

So it's best to know sooner or later, don't you think?

 

This is one of many tests that a typical relationship will go through.

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I think it'll really afffect texting/communication vs time together. What time do you usually wake up? I know a "good" wake up for me after a night shift is like 2, days where I'm more tired 4-5ish. So if you're waking up at decent times should get to see each other! But when you're sleeping you can't text...and we see on here quite frequently how reliant on texting people are.

 

I think it'll be an adjustment for her, but doable. When I went for working days/evenings back to days/nights, my partner had to take a few weeks to adjust...and we live together. For some reason he thought I'd be interested when he was heading out for lunch....sigh. Oh shift work.

 

Depending what time you get off you could always meet for a quick breakfast/bring her a coffee, my SO now loves when I work nights because he gets to wake up to fresh coffee.

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I can relate, I used to work 4 on 4 off (12 hour shifts) and rotated between days and nights every month. Now I am on a even worse schedule where I get it 2 weeks at a time 10 days in advance. I can work 2 on 1 off for two weeks straight, alternating between days and nights every 2 work days. I will be completely honest and say and unconventional shift will cause relationship problems. The worse the schedule the worse the problems.

 

At the start of the relationship people will tolerate a lot of "inconveniences " such as snoring, financial problems, and unconventional shifts. However as time goes on people grow tired of having to deal with those issues, and it ultimately will cause problems for a relationship. I work with a lot of people that have 20 to 30 years on shift work and are married. I found that for most of them, their wives also work unconvential hours as nurses, doctors, etc. they also said the only reason they stayed on shift work was for the pay, and if it wasn't for that they would have left it a long time ago. If the significant other works unconvential hours it will likely work out better from my experiences. Even more so if the SO is fairly independent and has other things they want to do besides be together all the time.

 

However you look at it things can work out. I have a feeling your doing the shifts for the reason I do it, the money. My best advice is to work hard to get off shift work, it's better for your health and relationships. I know I will be leaving it for those reasons. I am only 9 years in, I don't know how guys handled 30+ years of it.

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My boyfriend works 12 hr shifts and changing schedule. I work mon- fri 8am5pm. So, we spent a lot of weekends apart. What does it do? It makes me miss him like crazy. Absolutely not a deal breaker if you really love your partner. But it gets challenging, you miss them a lot

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For you 9 to 5ers out there, would that be a problem? Would it be a deal-breaker if your partner worked evenings, overnights, and or most weekends?

 

That in itself would not be a deal breaker. It would probably take a little getting used to, and some trial and error. As long as we could meet each others mental/emotional/physical needs, it would be ok.

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