Relationships on the Road
While some truck drivers are lucky enough to spend their evenings at home, long-distance drivers can find themselves away from family and friends for several weeks at a time. This puts a lot of pressure on relationships, especially for new drivers who don’t have seniority to choose local routes.
As an OTR truck driver, you can follow these four tips to stay connected to your family, even when you plan to drive for weeks at a time.
1. Call Your Family Every Day
Smartphones make it a lot easier for today’s OTR truckers to stay in contact with their families. Place at least one phone call per day to catch up on events back home. You may even want to use an app like FaceTime or Skype so you can talk face-to-face. There’s something special about seeing your spouse and children that a regular phone call can’t replace. Besides, FaceTime and Skype don’t charge for video chats as long as you’re in the same country.
2. Set Goals With Your Spouse
Distance can make people feel less connected to each other. Setting a few goals with your spouse, however, will give you common things to work toward. You can set goals such as:
- Saving enough money to take a long vacation.
- Making connections to find local routes.
- Holding parties for special events, such as birthdays and anniversaries.
3. Do Your Best to Help at Home
- Just because you’re on the road doesn’t mean you can’t help solve problems at home. If the kids refuse to do their homework, talk to them about how important good grades are and promise them a surprise for doing well. If your spouse complains that he or she doesn’t have time to make dinner, have a pizza sent to the house.
- There are a lot of ways to stay involved with your family, even if you’re a thousand miles away.
4. Talk to a Counselor
- Over-the-road driving is tough on families and other relationships. Sometimes, you may not know how to solve the difficulties you face. When you reach that point, it’s time to talk to a counselor about improving your relationships.
- You can use online counselors like the ones at Trucker Therapy. They provide phone and Skype sessions as well in-person appointments. You may also want to look for local therapists who specialize in family relationships. You may even find a professional who has experience working with the families of other truck drivers.
- A lot of truck drivers have relationship problems while they’re on the road. With the right types of effort, you may find that you can keep your relationships healthy and rewarding even when you’re on the road for weeks at a time.