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In the meantime, there are ways to deal with the question the right way.
Remind them he wants to be there.
Make sure you talk about how much he wishes he could be there – whatever the event is. How he was looking forward to it, but sends his regards.
Feel free to remind them that criminals don’t take breaks, so he can’t either – but try not to be too grouchy when you do so 🙂 To you, it’s obvious. It affects everything in your life – not theirs. So sometimes it pays to remind them of the reality of his job – the fact that he has to be there to help when crime goes down, which means it’s not restricted to banker’s hours.
Involve him as much as possible.
My husband is totally not the type to send cards for birthdays or holidays. It’s hard for him to even remember to call or text on a special day sometimes, especially when he’s on night shifts. So – for better or worse – the responsibility falls to me.
Again, I don’t always love it – but it’s just part of the deal.
I try to keep my calendar organized – especially so I can get reminders on my phone for birthdays/anniversaries. That way, when I get a reminder, I can shoot him a quick text to remind him to call or text whoever it is when he gets a chance.
I also try to remember to send cards/letters/artwork from my son to our family members every so often. If he’s not around to sign them, I just sign off from both of us. Which is especially easy if I order something online and can have the gift tag written in both our names – no pesky handwriting issues to rat us out 😉
The more involved your husband is when he can be, the less hurt your family and friends will feel when it’s not possible.
Make use of technology.
A friend recently introduced me to the Marco Polo app. She uses it to stay connected with her firefighter/military husband – and I have to say, I wish I’d heard of it before.
It’s like a blend between text messaging and Skype, where you can record a video of yourself for the other person, then they can respond whenever they have a chance.
It’s a great tool to help your husband feel involved when there’s a family function he can’t be at. And it’s a great way to show your family what he’s busy doing while they’re partying it up – it might just be enough for them to realize he’s not missing fun events by choice.
Realize you don’t have to fix everything.
How do you help your family and friends understand your husband’s schedule?