A Question for Kristie


New Member

I first want to thank you for offering to answer some questions, and offer your opinions. I read you article and enjoied it very much

I am 23 years old and a senior at UND. I am also engaged to a great girl who supports me in my career choice 100%. I am very fortunate!

She is from ND and has never lived more than a 5 hour drive from her parents. I will be graduating soon and we will be moving away.

My main concern is making the transition as easy as posible for her. I am moving her away from everything she has ever known to a completly different part of the country, and then I wont be around much to help ease the process.

I would give up flying for her. (for a pilot that is saying alot!) But I really dont want it to come to that. She is a strong, independant person, and I am very confident we can make this work together.

I quess what I would like from you is some ideas on how I can make all of this easier for her. She has given up a lot for me and I dont want her to feel left behind.

Thank you in advance

Hi Shawn, thanks for posting!

If you can give me a bit more information, I can probably help you out better... What I need to know is: how far are you moving? is it to a city with a major airport? are you moving to start in the major airlines or just starting instruction?

based on those 3 questions, I can pretty much give you an idea of what to expect and help you set up a scenario with your fiance that will probably make her feel much better...

We were just in this situation about a year ago when we first moved out to Arizona. I don't have any family here and when Doug and I first talked about it, he asked me if I was absolutely sure in wanting to do this move since he wouldn't be able to help out much with the move and getting acclimated to a new climate/city.

Moving from Florida really wasn't difficult for me because I really got to the point of not enjoying living in Florida even with my family there....

But my family was concerned that I would have no one to go to if I needed something.. so he promised to send me back (he'd pay full fare if needed) every 1-3 months or more if I needed to. I knew that I could fly back as often as I wanted so that helped me feel more comfortable with being so far away and at the same time, it helped my family feel more comfortable in that I can come back within an hours notice if need be.

when my brother got sick, I went back once a month and then ended up going back about once a week to just spend time with him - so having my companion pass (similar to a buddy pass)played a major role in that otherwise it would have cost a bundle to fly so often.

but I do remember the days when Doug was flying regional and he wasn't getting paid the amount he is now... there's no way we could have moved and had the opportunity to fly back home like we do now...the regionals don't have the same opportunities that the major airlines do - so that's why I asked the above 3 questions because they will make a difference in what opportunities you have at your disposal.

so if you can get back to me with that.. I can probably send you more towards one direction than all of them...

Hi Frank,

really, I see Doug pretty often I think! at least lately, I have. I'd say depending on schedule, I'll see him maybe 3/4 days out of a week... like with this months schedule, he'll go on 4 day trips and then he'll be home for 3 or 4 straight days. the only bad thing about this month is that most of his trips occur during the weekend, so that means I really only see him at night after work and if I take some time off from work to spend time with him... luckily, my job offers me that opportunity.

it really just depends on seniority and scheduling.. we've had schedules where Doug gets every weekend off, then we've had schedules where he's constantly flying 4 day trips on the weekend.. that's just how it goes.

but even when he has bad months, there are always things we can do about it.. take this weekend for instance.. he's working most of the weekends, but this weekend he had a long Reno layover - so I went with him. I flew from phoenix to Dallas.. then flew his trip from Dallas to Oakland (captain drove) then from Oakland to Reno (Doug drove)... I'd never been on a flight where he drove the plane and that was just sooo exciting for me! he's really really good - smooth takeoffs, easy landings, couldn't ask for better! but we had a great relaxing day in Reno and just spent some time together. Now, I'm back in phoenix, he's on his way to CVG (Cincinnati) and just called to say they cancelled his CVG-ATL flight and will be home late tonight... how that for 'cool'!! so, sometimes the schedules will work in your advantage, sometimes not - best thing is to just go with the flow of it and it'll get easier and easier as your seniority goes up!!

as for our relationship.. I would say that it's not normal, but in my opinion.. it's better than normal! A lot of couples I know in 'normal' 9-5 relationships don't have good bonds like we do with our traveling significant others. when they're traveling, we're getting our private time and our independence back.. when they're home, we're going for the quality of time, not the quantity of time. it makes it so much more special and important to go for the quality whereas a lot of people think that the quantity of time does the trick. sometimes, I think spending too much time together isn't good because you start taking the little things forgranted. so that's why I think relationships where life is a challenge is really an opportunity to live life to the fullest! But to be honest, I didn't always think this way.. it takes some time to get used to it and you just have to 'kind of' grow into it - then you can get a better understanding of how different and unique it is to see your version of 'couple' as compared to someone else's.

As far as I know.. Doug and I have a relationship that no other couples 'WE' know have.. we're in our 30's, still acting like teenagers (we went on one of those VR roller coasters the other day - GOTTA TRY IT!!) and having a really great time together.. other couples I've seen start getting on each others nerves, sticking the other in a cage (so to speak - 'why do you want to do that' type thing) and not experiencing the things they want to do because of the other person in the relationship... the only thing that Doug and I ever say about that is: you only have one life, live it now and sleep when your 80! If your partner doesn't want to join you, to bad for them.. they're missing out!

Thanks for posting!
Thanks Kristie for your answer. I hope that my relationship doesn't get hurt about my career dream(be a pilot).....................................

Sorry it took me so long to get back to you I've been flying alot!

Since I will not graduate until Aug. I really have no idea where we will be moving to. I plan to start applying to the reigonals within the next 6mo-1yr, and I guess we will go where ever I get hired.

I can tell you this...I do not plan on commuting to work. We will live where I work. Simply because I dont want to spend an extra day away trying to get home and back.

I would like some suggestions on how I can make this transition as easy as possible on my future wife.

Thanks for your time.

Hello everyone.

First of all, thanks Kristie for the joining the list of topics! Nice to be able to talk with someone who lives with a pilot. My question is do you know when Doug will be flying the Dallas-Oakland, Oakland-Reno route? Thanks a lot!

i'm not really sure when doug will be doing the reno trip again.. you need to ask doug that! it won't be in the month of april however.. that much i know! might i ask why you inquire?

Hey Kristie.

The reason I wanted to know was so that I could listen to him go into and out of the airport on my scanner. But if you or Doug feel uncomfortable giving out that information for security reasons (or if Doug is worried I might go to the airport to meet him, which I would not), I understand.