our everyday life

Is It Normal to Be Angry When Your Spouse Is Away?

by Chelsea Fitzgerald

Bidding your spouse goodbye with a smile and kiss when he leaves for a business trip, deployment or any other reason might be quite difficult to do when you are seething with anger. Recognizing the reasons for the anger and learning to cope with them helps you be a better parent and more enjoyable to be around.

Emotions that Contribute to the Anger

When your spouse is absent, the work and emotional toil of being a parent seems to triple. You might be jealous that you are stuck home with the kids while he is off on a business trip or another adventure. It isn’t abnormal to feel some degree of resentment. You might also experience irrational fear. This might be because you are skittish about being the only adult at home on lonely nights or you wonder whether you could cope well alone during an emergency.

Look at the Reality

In reality, most women realize that a business trip is actually work, but that still doesn’t prevent jealousy and anger from arising. This is often because he is able to get away from the drudgery of every day life and you feel stuck. Even if your husband must wine and dine clients at expensive restaurants, he is still at work. His job enables you and your children to enjoy your quality of living. If your spouse is deployed, he is likely stationed in treacherous or uncomfortable locales. Traveling, whether by car, train, bus or an airplane can be exhausting. Your spouse might also struggle with adjusting to different climates, loneliness and strange foods, according to the Good Therapy website. He might have to deal with clients or executives who are demanding and hard to please. Remember, the circumstances aren't necessarily all fun and games for him either.

Coping with the Situation

Be kind to yourself while your spouse is gone by treating yourself to time away from the children, according to the I Can Teach My Child website. Hire a sitter or ask a friend or family member to stay with the children for a few hours. Treat yourself to a movie, dinner out with a friend or even a trip to the grocery store without having to deal with the demands of being a mom. These breaks help refresh you and restore your energy for parenting. The children might also miss their dad terribly, so it's important that you maintain an upbeat attitude and reassure them he is only a phone call away. Use a webcam, phone, email or instant messaging to allow them to speak with their father at least once every day.

Talking With Your Spouse

It is vital that you discuss your feelings openly with your spouse; do this when you are both calm, rested and alone, according to the Ohio State University Extension website. He might have no clue you feel this way. If it is in his nature not to complain, he might only discuss the pleasant parts of his trip away from home. Being frank with him allows him to share the bad parts as well. This is also an opportune time to discuss each other’s needs. While he might want to arrive home to cheers and accolades that “Daddy’s home!” your only thought might be, “Take these kids for a while so I can recuperate!” Talking about both your needs allows you to come to a compromise, such as him taking the kids to a museum or park the next day once he has had the opportunity to and rewind.

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