Have you started dating a police officer and you’re not really sure what to expect? These are the top 5 things you’re going to need to know about your new LEO beau.
Maybe you met recently and hit it off, maybe you’ve been friends for a while and you started up a romance. Whatever the case is, it looks like you’ve got a new man in your life.
And that man just so happens to be a police officer.
Well, first of all, congratulations! New romances are always super exciting. And dating a man in uniform has its perks (like looking hot as heck in his uniform, right?) But there’s definitely more baggage that comes with dating a police officer than with the average Joe.
I get a lot of emails from those who’ve just started dating a man in law enforcement. They’re a little apprehensive about what they’re getting into and they want to know if I have any advice.
And I totally get it! You might know things here and there, you might have even been friends with him before, but you realize you’re committing to a whole new level of things.
Because sure, you’re dating him – but you’re also kind of dating his department, too. I mean, not in a weird way. They’re just a package deal, and you’re right to take that seriously.
So if you want to know what you’re getting into with your new man, here’s a quick-and-dirty guide to the top 5 things you’ll need to know.
5 Things To Know About Dating a Police Officer
You’re going to have to learn to be extremely flexible and independent.
If you’re used to relationships with any degree of consistency (Taco Tuesdays, date nights every Friday), take a deep breath. It won’t happen in this relationship.
Between night shifts, shifts that unexpectedly go late, overtime shifts, and the occasional manhunt, your officer is going to be on the job a lot. Even when he’s not at work, the emotional drain from police work will probably make him want to immerse himself in a video game or nap sometimes when he could be spending time with you.
While I’m not saying to let him be lazy in the relationship, it’s important to understand how crazy demanding his job is. Even for wives, it starts feeling like they’re sharing their husbands with a second wife. Try to cut him some slack – and hey, maybe you’ll discover how much you enjoy those video games, too!
But most importantly, work on making the most of that alone time. If this thing goes the distance, you’ll need to be able to adapt to all the crazy situations that come up. And on the bright side, you’ll probably start actually enjoying that alone time!
Even when he leaves work, it won’t leave him.
When you’re driving around with your officer, there’s a good chance he’s going to be constantly grumbling about the drivers around him, saying things like “I’d pull them over so fast” and, “Their tabs are way expired.”
When you’re at a restaurant? If you mistakenly take the seat with the greatest “tactical advantage”, he’s either going to make you move or he’ll squirm the entire time. And tables in the middle of a restaurant aren’t happening at all.
Oh, and when you’re in a store and you start talking to him, thinking he’s right next to you, but when you look over he’s gone? He probably darted down a different aisle because he didn’t want someone he’d arrested to see you with him.
And these habits will last pretty much the rest of their lives: Once a police officer, always a police officer.
Even though it can be annoying at times, I know I appreciate that he’s always on the lookout for our family’s safety. If something goes down, I’ll appreciate the fact that I took 0.2 seconds to shift to a different seat in that restaurant, because he’s much more useful in that situation than I’d be. Hands down.
And if I have to chat about expired tabs every once in a while, well, that’s just a sacrifice I’ll have to make.
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You won’t always know everything about their days at work.
Police officers don’t always like to talk about their days. So while you consider, “hey babe, how was your day?” a completely normal, innocuous question, on the wrong day, they might take it like an attack – because they had a freaking terrible day.
Like, not just “it was busy” or “I got stuck in traffic”, but more like “I saw something I’ll never, ever forget that changed essentially who I am as a person”. that kind of thing.
You’ll have to learn how to let them process things at their own pace. Eventually, you’ll get comfortable with not always knowing the particulars of what’s eating at him. While communication is essential in a relationship, in this relationship, you’ll have to understand that some topics of conversation are ones to treat lightly on – or deal with at a later date.
You can’t let people get to you.
Sometimes, people just suck. Whether it’s armchair quarterbacks thinking they could do the job better or a catty wife who snottily refers to you as “just a girlfriend”, there are going to be people unique to this life that just piss you off.
Do your best to be like a duck – let that drama roll off your back as much as possible. Other people’s unpleasantness will largely have nothing to do with you and everything to do with their own issues. So don’t make them your issues!
When those situations come up, unfollow people/pages/groups on Facebook (or unfriend/delete yourself from groups if necessary), avoid the naysayers, and focus on the good people instead. Because even though Negative Nellies are louder, there are plenty of good people around.
Related Post: To The Police Girlfriend Who Feels Left Out
Yes, it’s hard, but it’s worth it when he’s The One.
I’m not saying this life is easy. In fact, there are a lot of things that could send you running for the hills. And no amount of sexy uniforms can make up for a lot of it.
But you know what does make up for it? Being with the man who makes your heart swell up and sets your soul on fire. The man you love with everything you’ve got, who loves you back as best as he can. Who knows your imperfections and loves you anyway.
And when that man just so happens to also be a rough-and-tough cop who’d be willing to put his life on the line for anyone – especially you and any kids you might have in the future? That’s just the cherry on top.
Even though this life can get really hard, and really overwhelming, and really lonely, and all the things, it comes down to this: if he’s the right one for you, it’s all going to be worth every single sucky moment.
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You’ll get this thing figured out! In the meantime, enjoy the excitement of the early stages – and know that it just gets better from here.