stay at home mom of two and my husband just got a rig job..... whats this like?

Elizabeth - posted on 01/21/2011 ( 23 moms have responded )

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my husband just got a job working on the rigs up north. He is a journeyman carpenter and is bored with the work and is super underpaid. He has always wanted to work on the rigs and we finally made the switch. He has only been gone for two days and I'm finding it super tough. Does it get easier? He will be on 20 days and off 10. I have a 6 month old and a 2 year old. Do any of you have little kids? How did they adjust? Do you like this life? He thinks that it will be so much better financially and he can come home and spend ten full days with us instead of just coming home and seeing the kids for an hour before they go to bed. Is it a pretty stable job? I know that for two months out of the year they dont work for spring break up and everybody else on the rig is single and doesnt have families so its hard for him to relate. any advice?

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Kellie - posted on 01/30/2011

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Hi Elizabeth!! My husband doesn't work on the oilfield, but he works on a tow boat down in Louisiana. He is gone 2 weeks and home 2 weeks. Our daughter was 3 months when he started working on the tow boat and she is now 3 years old and we also have a son who just turned 2. Thats all they know. It was so hard at first because during his probation period he was gone 28 days. I hated it, but it has gotten much easier. While he is home for those 14 days we get to go on vacation as a family and do pretty much whatever we want. When he was working a regular job working 5 days a week 9 hours a day I felt like he never spent anytime with me and our baby girl because he would go to work, come home, eat, get a shower, go to bed, and start all over. Our weekends were always spent visiting family so we never got enjoy our little family or have alone time. It was very stressful. Although I get stressed out a little with the kids now its nothing compared to what it use to be. We are so much happier now.

Elizabeth - posted on 01/30/2011

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Thanks!!!! I use coupon mom too and other ones like dealfind, they are rad. I'll check out those ones you mentioned too. It's really hard when you can't make ut through the month when you have kids . Much easier when you just have to worry about yourself and it's mo big deal to live on rice haha. Now that money won't be as big of a problem I will continue to find deals what's the point of working so hard for a bigger pay cheque only to waste it on coffees and stuff you don't need? I want to do the same
1. Have ten grand in savings for emergency
2. College fund for kids
3. Pay off mortgage

After that he can buy anything he wants lol

Ps totally get an iPhone. We pay less with these then with our old plan plus we get free long distance to each other And now we don't have to pay for a computer or air card fir him up there. The iPhone 4 has video calling free to any other iPhone it's wicked

Kasey - posted on 01/30/2011

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I’m glad that you both like it! I wanted to add how I like to save money lol. On face book there is money saving queens, she post all the great seals and free give a ways. I think 3 days ago she posted Coastal Contacts were giving away a free pair of glasses and prescription. My daughter needed a new pair to. Saved me 200.00 and only cost $22.00! My other favorites on face book that post other great free things are citygirlbigworld and I love free things. I also use coupon mom.com they make it super easy to use coupons, and show you how to get free things from grocery stores. These are all free. I was a single-teen mom too before I met my husband, I think it was good for me, lol. I learned how to save and I don’t want all the new popular things, usually. I do want a new phone for us that we can use skype on, ( I blame you, j/k). My husband use to make fun of me for using coupons till he saw it cut are grocery bill in half but usually more. Now he wants me too. Lol. My husband is the same way, if he wants it he buys it. Drives me nuts, lol. Sometimes I fill like I am always saying no! 1. Do you need it? Do we have the money? Would that money serve us better if it was in a collage fund for the girls? That one always works!!

Kasey - posted on 01/22/2011

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My husband does not work on the rigs but does work on the pipeline. He Is gone 3 to 6 months at a time but then get to come home for a month or 2. My children are 3 and 8, the do adjust but it does take time. My 3 year old takes about 1 week when he leaves and about 2 weeks when he gets home. It is hard the work is not stable on the pipeline. We save save save!! We always have at least 6 months of bills saved just incase something happened. I think you should do the same. I am also always 6 months ahead on my house payment, which is not the cheapest way to go because those payments could have went toward principle only. Better safe than sorry. It is a dangerous job, people do get killed and hurt, I like to be prepared. The good thing are, we have traveled a lot, I think we have seen more in the last 4 years than most people will in there life! Its good money, when he is laid off we get unemployment ( I do not depend on this though, I have seen people loose every thing not being prepared). This job does put stress on are marriage, he is gone I get lonely so does he. I use to work with him so I know what all the other guys are doing ( pigs, lol). I think knowing how all the other guys out there are, didn’t help me, but we talk on the phone as much as possible. When he is home I try to have as much quality time with him as possible. I think it take a lot of trust and communication to make a marriage like this work. I think its like 3 out of 5 marriages will end. Everyone I met out there had been devoiced at least once. Also we set rules to follow, no going to the bars, we have to be honest, when I am lonely I need to be able to call him and let him know how I fill. It is not easy, sometimes I wonder if the money is worth it. I take care of the children with little help from him. When he gets home I don’t want him to have to start cleaning and start house work, so I try to have everything ready for him. Also I sometimes fill as if I plan my life around his, witch is had for me, I want to get a job but then I cant go visit him. ( I go visit him every 4 to 6 weeks). To some things up , we have beautiful home, money in the bank, 2 wonderful children ( my 8 year old is on honor role), a good strong marriage ( most of the time lol), I do sacrifice things but im happy!

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Christenia - posted on 06/22/2014

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Be prepared to live like a single parent. Learn how to repair things and get skype. 10 years experience has made us strong, but it is a hefty bit to stress and worry. Get to know your rig wives and it will be better.

Copen - posted on 12/01/2012

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Also, in addition to my previous post.... I would rather see him even for ten days a month rather then not at all for seven months. Rig job would be a dream compared to not seeing your husbands at all. Be thankful.

Copen - posted on 12/01/2012

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My husband got a great job in Pinedale WY. I don't think its stable enough to move our family up there. Pinedale is to small of a town. If he loses that job we are stuck. Not big enough to find suitable work again. I was thinking because he suggested it and I agree that he would love to work on the rigs or even off. We don't care. So far he has been gone for almost seven months (I'm in GA with the two young children). So missing him is almost unbearable at this point. I was wondering if any of you other wives could recommend on where the best places to live and work are for the rig jobs and how to go about it. Any pointers?

Julia - posted on 01/27/2011

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yup have to say the money is awesome. Its the saving part my hubby doesnt understand lol. But I was a single mom of my daughter when i met him,and was so used to getting everything second hand and stuff, it has been a big transition to buy brand new. LOL we still get all the kids clothes at the second hand store...they just grow too fast otherwise...unless of course there are awesome sales. LOL
I dunno everything i buy has to be on sale or a good price...that drives hubby nuts cuz everything he buys, he buys no matter what.
But its awesome to get a check and go spend $300 on groceries and not even dent it. And have enough groceries for the month.
Its not always the rig company that lacks the rules and stuff, its the oil company that hired that rig. When my hubby was up in GP it was lax but now they went with a different oil company on this well and its super strict.
Im thinking when he gets to be driller he will proabably be gone more...but at this point it doesnt matter, this month hes already been gone almost the whole month. lol.. so we will see.
my hubby loved being a motorman, he thinks derrick is a bit boaring because he cant run the loader anymore lol.

Elizabeth - posted on 01/27/2011

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Im not sure if there is a rig union........ BUT i do know that my husbands benefits are FAR better than any he has before. I dont know if all the companies get them but his is not the biggest by far and he does have them :)

Kasey - posted on 01/27/2011

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Just wondering if you can join the union with any of the companies? If not do the offer benefits?

Elizabeth - posted on 01/27/2011

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why do you have mixed feelings? i think things were slow everywhere but im a little worried about this company too even though simon LOVES them and they have a great record and my friend is the directional driller and LOVES them too. they allow you to wear hoodies and they are lax on the whole facial hair thing..........ummmmm doesnt that save lives? i dont like that they are lax. my husband used to smoke pot and quit obviously for the rigs and will never ever do it again regardless of if they allow it or not but he said that everybody is high up there. that scares me SO much.

simon is 27 too! he feels like hes getting into this super late. they love him though and told him they want to make him a rough neck right away and that if he keeps working like this he will be a motorhand? in no time. so thats a good thing. sweet that yours will be a driller! does that mean hes away more? i dont like that the industry gets so slow and then were left with nothing but at the same time he left his job as a commerical carpenter for the same reasons so i guess it could come with any job. at least with this job it gives you the extra money to save for lay offs. with him being a carpenter we werent even making it through the month let alone saving for an emergency. its kind of strange actually for us to be able to be like "hey lets go to starbucks and get a coffee" haha . were used to watching our money soooooooo tight. today i even bought my daughter a cute little tutu from gap and was like "omg i can actually do this and not stress about how im going to pay for it. simon got home last night and its soooooo nice knowing that he gets to stay for a few days and we can actually spend time with him :) simon said that he met a few of the guys on the savannah rig thats near his rig. he is by worner? is that right?

Julia - posted on 01/26/2011

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leduc is about 20mins outside edmonton. Its right around nisku..which is where alot of rig companies have an office.
LOL i love the allowance too! it kinda sux it comes with the paycheck, especially if you've been laid off and you have to pay for gas and a hotel room to even get started to work.
He has worked the rigs for 8 years going on nine years now..lol that makes him sound old but hes only turning 27 this year.
He thinks savanna is great...myself i have mixed feelings, especially the last couple years when things were slow. But they are getting better. They are finally moving him up the ladder, which is awesome, after breakup they are sending him drilling which will be awesome.
He wants to one day be a tool push and have his own rig, so I guess we are in it for the long run lol.
He has worked for savanna for almost 4yrs now, he did work for nabors and ensign but he says savanna tops them all. Sometimes that is scary lol.

Elizabeth - posted on 01/26/2011

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I know what you mean i HATE driving. he is still not home yet and i thought he was going to be home at 5. its scary because he is the same he just drives straight from working..... brutal. we were thinking about his leaving his truck in GP and then he could fly to calgary and then fly back to GP and grab his truck. i dont even know if its that much more expensive....... something to look into for sure. at least they get that allowance though. covers gas and our truck payments haha. where is leduc? how long has he worked on the rigs? what does he think of savannah?

Julia - posted on 01/26/2011

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we are in leduc, there has been many times where he has been 10hrs away and I wished I could take the kids.
maybe the next location will be closer for you. That would be nice.
driving always sucks!! Im always worried when my hubby comes home cuz he doesnt sleep after his shift, he just comes home. Flying is def. the way to go. Although once he has been up there for a while he could always fly from grand prairie. Get one of the guys to drop him off?.. but i guess that could get expensive. But faster hehe
Its definatley better to spend 10days with him instead of packing it into an hour. I know what you mean, while he was working in the yard he would come home at 6p everynight, tired, grumpy and by the time supper was over and kids were in bed he was asleep on the couch LOL. i felt like i was 80 going to bed at 9pm!!
I really enjoy him working 20 and 10 too.

Elizabeth - posted on 01/26/2011

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Julia. My husband works for Excalibur. A friend of mine who is a driller actually recommended savannah but then got him onto his site instead. where do you guys live? Simon's site is actually two hours north of grand prairie. were in calgary so its 10 hours from here. he drives out there but it would be so sweet if he could fly. he comes home tonight from his first set because he started half way through their 20 days. now that im used to it I actually LOVE it. i was so scared but i really like it and i feel so much less stressed than i was when i was trying to pack in quality time into one hour a night haha. i really think this will work for us. we decided to get iphones too so we can keep in touch through video chat. I wish that he was close enough to take the kids to see him that would be awesome!

Julia - posted on 01/26/2011

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My husband works 20 gone and 10 home also...he used to work 14 and 7s but I am getting to like the 10days home. It gives us time to do our running around, spend time with each other and spend time with the kids.(they are 7,3 and 19months)
Im just getting used to him being gone again because from the end of Oct. til jan 6 he was working in the yard and home everynight.
The only thing that sucks is that this hitch got extended because they are looking for a driller for the 3rd crew so he will be gone 30days.
Trust is a big issue with us also, I hate when he works non camp, and has to stay in a hotel. I dont think i am as worried about him as the other women lol...
Im looking forward to this well being done, they are going to fly in camp up north. Thats also an awesome way to save money!!!
who does your husband work for?
mine works for savanna.
when he does work non camp and is the furthest 5hrs away, we try to go see him. Like this summer was spent in Grande Prairie camping because he was up there. Last weekend we took a road trip to rocky mountain house for the weekend. It was nice. It makes up for the times he is way tooo far to get too.

Elizabeth - posted on 01/25/2011

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for sure trust is a HUGE issue - if you cant trust each other I dont see how it would ever work. I trust mine 100% which is the only reason its working so far. At the same time the driller on his site told me that he has seen it time and time again where its actually the wives that cheat more often becuase they get so lonely. Im sure it depends on the site though too- he also said that the wives get so used to their husbands being done that when they come back they get super annoyed with them being home so much and want to them to get back to work hahaha. I am pretty sure that wont be the case but i guess its something to be aware of. to remember that my husband has been out working his ass off 12 hours a night to provide for us and when he comes home to get uptight that our new routine is going to be a little different while hes home........

Taliana - posted on 01/25/2011

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You all made such sacrifice for family and children.salute to you all. I wished my husband would at least try what your husband done instead just give up..... to be apart sometimes I think will make relationship sweeter. as long both agree to be faithful to one another...

Coralee - posted on 01/24/2011

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Hi Elizabeth,

My husband has been in the oilfield 14 years and although he now doesnt travel very much when he does we are reminded of our coping tools. One of the things that the kids and I do the first night he is out of town is have sticky cheese ( home made mac and cheese ). Kasey is so right about communication the more the better and skype is FABulous. And know you have lots of us here for a sounding board and to cheer you on.

Coralee
http://www.workathomeunited.com/fhhc

Elizabeth - posted on 01/23/2011

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THANKS I just got him a laptop so we can skype. we dont have service up there for his phone and were in a contract so we cant get out. a laptop will be sooooo wicked. we also got an aircard from a friend that used to work on the rigs. i didnt know it cost money every month!

funny i am SO jealous. I am happy that he is in a remote place and there is nothing to do but sleep and work haha. I have no reason to be and I know know know that even if he was working IN a strip club I would have nothing to worry about haha but I am just that type I guess, I can see getting insecure as well if we didnt remain in contact a lot. He called this morning from a pay phone and is pretty excited to get the computer. I told her some of your advice. He said that he wishes he had the same support up there. he said all the guys are pigs and they told him they know what he is going through missing his wife but then they start talking about other women ect.... he was like WOW i cant relate to you at all. I think about how tough it is for me here i cant imagine what its like for him. at least I have my kids and a good network of other moms that can help.

Kasey - posted on 01/23/2011

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I do adjust and so do the children. One of are best investments were buying him a laptop so we could talk on skype, that always helps me to feel somewhat closer to him when he is gone, the kids love it too! If he doesn’t have wifi where he is staying we use a internet card, I found sprint has the best price $30 to $60 dollars a month. He doesn’t use it much just for skype and face book so the $30 a month was the best. When he comes home ( he is gone much longer than you husband is) its hard for me and him. He is a super hyper person and when he is laid off it usually December to February. Since its so cold out side we usually end up staying in then he needs to find a project. The projects are usually reorganizing everything including the kitchen, bedrooms and the desk lol. I get mad because I cant find anything then he will say it my house too. So its little things like this that I have to get use to again. I think I will have a project planed for him next time with all the materials bought so he will have something else to do, lol. It sound like you have a good relationship and that is important. Im not the jealous type and know he wouldn’t cheat on me but every once in a while I will start feeling insecure. I think its just part of it or it is for us, we have learned how to make each other feel better and things to say. Oh and my favorite part is we plan a vacation every year just for us!! We are going on a cruise in march, my mom will have the kids and it lets us focuses on us. I call it are yearly marriage maintenance, by calling it that I don’t feel so bad about leaving the children, lol. We never get too used to being apart, and i dont think you will.
you seem to have a good relationship, Im sure after a couple of times of him coming and going back to work you will find your “normal”!

Elizabeth - posted on 01/22/2011

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thats wicked advice thank you. I am not worried at all about the trust. my husband hates bars and even when he worked in calgary I had to force him to go out without me the only thing i am worried about is getting too used to being apart. I dread the day that he comes home and I feel that its strange. My friends husband worked on the rigs and quit when they found out they were having a baby but then realized that working a normal job they saw each other less because its an hour or so a night and then you go to bed! at least this way its 10 days quality time straight. 3-6 months is a LONG time i dont think I could ever do that but Im sure its the same kind of thing and you just adjust. Thanks a lot for all the advice, there are a lot of benefits and cons so we will have to see which weighs more...... for sure save though thats top on our list :)

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