“There are only so many hours in the day. Watch commanders make us stay late, prosecutors call us in on our time off, criminals and Mother Nature subject us to the most horrible scenes imaginable-and then we have to go home to our families. Holding the world on our shoulders takes an enormous physical and emotional toll over time. We have to learn how to maintain that balance. TELL your family you love them. TAKE the time off you need to be there for important school functions, for date night, and for family functions.
For those of us in supervisory roles, ENCOURAGE your troops to spend time with and be involved in their family activities. Make the effort to emphasize the belief that family comes first. Make sure to be approachable when it comes to requests for time off. Go to bat for your people when they ask for time, to the best. Communicate with your loved ones. You may not want to relive the fatality crash you just worked, but your family doesn't know that...it can be as simple as, "I had a really tough shift, and I'd rather not talk about my day, how was yours.” Make time, not excuses. It's not easy, but then again we didn't choose the easiest path in life.”
Many people also suggested reading “I Love a Cop” and “Emotional Survival for Law Enforcement,” two excellent books for police families. We learn so much when we listen to our families and listen to each other. Show this article to your own family members and see what they have to say. Ask them what you can do to make their lives better, and listen carefully to their answers. You won’t always be a cop, but you’ll forever be part of a cherished family.