Overcome Threats to the Home Front

Just as you come prepare for the physical dangers of the street, you must be prepared to deflect the temptations and improper advances that can endanger your marriage.

Anticipate temptations

A good cop knows complacency is deadly when routine dulls your attention to officer-safety. You can handle a thousand uneventful, and mostly false alarms, but must still anticipate the burglar waiting to ambush you on number one thousand one. Similarly, when it comes to temptation you must expect it will happen, and at the most unexpected time.

Some people travel through life with an eye out for their next sexual partner, and a little thing like a spouse at home is never going to get in the way of some dirty fun. They are not the ones this is for. Complacency becomes a threat when you assume it can never happen to you, that your eyes will never wander, that your relationship is too strong. Realistically, I never thought it would happen to us is a common refrain; countless attractive people with engaging personalities will stroll in and out of your world every day, and even the strongest relationship can have off times where one of you is feeling insecure or unappreciated or out-of-touch. All it might take then is a flirty smile, extra attention, or some other ego boost from one of those attractive coworkers or citizens to nudge you off-track.

Never assume you will not face temptations, or you will always be able to walk away from them. Instead, know in advance who and what your temptations might be. Know in advance what circumstances might make you vulnerable. Know in advance that temptations will come your way. Take the advantage of surprise away from your potential temptations by knowing in advance how you will react to defuse temptations.

Be prepared to react defensively

Just as you come prepared, mentally and physically, to work the street you have to be mentally and physically prepared to deflect temptation and advances. There are plenty of people anxious to bed a cop, or as many as they can get their hands on, who are far from coy. Others live lives starved for compassion, and if you happen to be the one who offers help or kindness during a tough time, they are hooked.

Be kind but direct. Have a plan ready to counter advances, and follow through. Let them know you have professional concern for them. Mention your spouse early and often in conversations with attractive coworkers or people you routinely see and who you think might have more than a friendly interest (if it is safe to do so). Bring them to department functions and social events when you can so you are thought of as being part of a strong couple.

Most importantly, remind yourself that the ego boost you might feel, or the bit of excitement at being noticed, diminishes with time, and that the short-term reward of an affair never lasts as long as the devastation it causes.

Put your marriage first

This one is simple. Forsake all others!

There is a reason for Biblical admonishment against adultery and letting others come between you and your spouse. There is a reason people are reminded to forsake all others in the middle of their wedding ceremonies. And there is a reason we chose to remind you of that here.

Others will try to come between you and your spouse. Guaranteed! You will face temptation. Guaranteed! And sometimes what tries to come between you will be inanimate; your jobs, your hobbies, summer softball league, maybe even your own kids! It is absolutely necessary, however, that you put your marriage first. If you can do that, it makes it so much easier for everything else to fall into place. A solid, healthy marriage that comes first becomes the foundation for a life where everything else - the job, the possessions, the hobbies, the kids - are better for it, too. When you invest deliberate and devoted effort to making your marriage your first priority, forsaking all the others who would harm it becomes a no-brainer.

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