“I actually am careful about what I wear to bed when he’s on duty. Because I never know when another uniform will knock on my door…” Fran, CHP wife, thirteen years
“How many normal people use words like trained observer and incident in their conversations?” Rhonda, CHP wife, eleven years
I didn’t sign up for this when I fell in love with my man. Brent was in that place of college indecision when we met. He had just realized that his first choice, the Air Force Academy, was not to be. There was a whole world of opportunity just waiting to be explored! So he looked into medicine and law, and he even considered becoming a pastor. Another choice was the California Highway Patrol. His dad was on the patrol and encouraged him to throw in an application. While we spent time getting to know each other, he was also following up on each step of the hiring process.
Then we got engaged. The first decision we made as a couple was to say yes to the patrol. We set our wedding date five weeks before he was to report to the California Highway Patrol Academy. I had no idea what I was in for. But I had my guy, and that was all that mattered. In our minds, we committed to the patrol for five years. It was a way for us to grow up, get some life experience for medicine or ministry. But somewhere along the way, we let go of other opportunities. His career had become a calling.
He became a cop.
If you knew your husband before he became a lawman, you probably witnessed a change in him. Maybe you met your man afterward and you knew what you were in for from the beginning. But, either way, we became cop wives and entered into a life that is different than non-cop wives. Because he is in law enforcement, your marriage is different from others. But why?
Who He Is
Every society needs individuals who will step in and uphold the laws that the collective people agreed were necessary for peace. There will always be those who don’t want to follow these rules. Some will, at times, go to significant effort to make sure they get their way and then get away with it. Our husbands devote themselves to restoring and keeping the peace these people disrupt. Some call it the thin blue line—the force that stands between order and chaos. It’s a tough position. Because our husbands are protectors of the peace, they have to be on guard at all times in, and sometimes out, of uniform. Their safety is of utmost importance, as is the safety of their loved ones. As a precaution, protections can be put in place to minimize access to themselves and their families.