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help! need some encouraging words!!

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Active member
May 6, 2002
Just wondered if this flying thing is ever gonna happen! I have been really supportive until this point, but I need some encouragement if any of you have some to give. I have sacraficed so much to get my husband all his ratings (1000 total 125 multi)- (we lived apart for a year while he attended flight school) I lived with his parents -while raising our 2 kids while flying for CO as a FA while he spent every dime we ever had. Now- after I convinced him to give up the CFI gig and get a decent paying job so we could move out on our own again he wants to sell the house we just bought to either buy an airplane or go back to being a $250/week CFI!!!! I can't take it!!!
He seems to think that everything in the industry is going to pick up in another year or two. We have 2 small kids a mortgage and the list goes on... I think sometimes he would choose flying over us even though he tells us he is doing the whole thing for us. So sorry to ramble on about this- anyone else out there in a similar situation???
It is not easy, as nothing seems to be right now.

Although it will be a tough road, much better times are ahead for pilots in my opinion. Those that stick it out now will see better times later in their professional career.

It is tough all over though. If he can keep instructing while looking for another (flying) job then try and support him best you can. Don't let him buy an airplane. That isn't an easy way to make a buck or a living.

Just in the past few months I have seen members on this board finally find a job other than teaching. It can and will happen, you just have to be very diligent.

And I doubt he cares about flying more than his family. He is probably just very focused and intent on making this a career. Nothing wrong with that.

Hang in there if you can. I know he will appreciate you for it later.
Supporting your hubby

It helps that you're in the business. I'd bet plenty of the pilots with whom you've flown have regaled you with their tales of how they struggled to the top. So, you know it isn't easy.

Your husband needs more flight time. He's low on multi. He needs to build it up and hang in while he's doing it. Once he has more time, companies will be interested in him. I'd bet hiring will pick up at about that time. Just ask the pilots you fly with.

Don't let him buy an airplane. No matter how well-budgeted the venture may be, insurance and maintenance will eat him alive.

You are his support system. He needs you more than ever. Give it time. It'll pay you.
In a similar situation? Not anymore. We were for about 12 years while I was getting ratings and building time. Now my wife is home and cancer free. Life is very good. Believe me it could be worse. And when its as bad as you think it can be it will get better.

Hang tough Pilotswife. Like the movie says, you never know what you're going to get. It is an adventure though, isnt it!

Dont sell the house. Dont buy an airplane. The only advice I can give you is, " If it Floats, Flys, or F---s, RENT IT"! I hope I got a small smile out of that one. Not even a little, itsy, bitsy one?
It's not a easy decision to make. I never would of become a pilot if it wasn't for my loving wife. My wife has sacraficed for many years now, to make sure I do what I love. Remember it is a two way street and compromise is the key to success. Remind your husband about the compromise. Remind him that you are willing to bend but not break over becoming a pilot. My wife and I decided a long time ago that we were more important to each other than any career.
Good Luck
You will make the right decision.
From wife of rumpletumber

I understand your feelings pilotswife! My husband read your post and called me to read it....he thought I might want to respond. He is on these forum things all the time, but this is my first time....so sorry if I ramble.

I am in just about the same situation as you. My husband has been working on his CFI for the past 9 months after becoming unemployed in another career. We have struggled like mad....almost loosing our house three times....having utilities cut off....etc. etc. We have 3 kids and right now the only income we have is what I make. There are many many days that I ask myself the same question that you have asked....."is this flying thing EVER going to happen." My answer is....I don't have a clue, but I sure hope so. Every time I have flown with rumpletumbler, I can see that he is really good at it....you can just see the look on his face of really loving what he is doing at that very moment. I'm sure you've seen it in your husbands face too.

I'm being very longwinded here and probably not an "encouragement" to you, but I wanted to let you know that you aren't alone. I am right out there with you.....frustrated....hurting.....sometime even wanting to give up myself. But, God gave us to our husbands so that we would come along beside them to help and support them. They (the husbands) make that VERY DIFFICULT sometimes, but we have to stick with them....keep them reigned in a little when they get wild ideas like buying airplanes, or selling our homes.

I read the responses to your post and its hard to not give you advise too. Every situation is different and every marriage is different. The only thing that I can say is what I know from experience. I don't know if being the wife of a pilot is worth all of this.....but I DO know this......you need to try every single thing (within reason) that you can to make it work. Because in the end, if you divorce him.....your kids will pay the price.....and let me tell you, that there is nothing worse than seeing your children suffer that pain.....because it NEVER goes away for them like it will for us. Leaving a husband is easier than leaving a "daddy."

Lets hang in there together pilotswife.....EVENTUALLY it must pay off!

rumpletumbler's wife
Hi Nicole- I remember writing you before 9-11- amazing how the industry has changed. I will give it to you straight- we had an Instructor Pilot on our way to XNA and he told us we have United, US Air and Delta pilots going through training at ASA!! When I followed up for an old freight buddy I was told he did not have enough turbine time! The days of 1200/200 and a job are over. I don't wish to sound negative and I certainly can't predict the future. I think your family should come first. Your husband can always teach on the side but if you have small children I would not bet the ranch on an Airline job now or in the near future.Also, while he is teaching on the weekends he may make a corporate contact or two, you never know! All the best- Wil
Husband's job

Your husband's job is to support his family. I was in the same situation in 1982, 39 years old, third job in five years, big lay offs, no jobs, only income Navy Reserve flying and unemployment. I got out of flying and became a tailpipe salesman. This what you have to do to make ends meet. If he wanted to pursue this life with his new mistress (flying) he should have done it before the kids came along. Sorry, but that is the life you have, he entered into a contract with you and now he has to live up to that contract.
This is more of a message for your husband. Do not quit your day job or if you don't have one, go get one. You can always instruct on evenings and weekends. You would be suprised at how much flying you can get by showing up at the airport when your student is supposed to be there and do your flight. I know that not all "full time" instructors are really flying all day. I can't count the days where there is a flight in the AM and one in the PM where you sit around all day and pump gas or whatever then the PM student fails to show. Whole day wasted when you could have done the same thing but worked all day at a heck of alot more in wages. Aviation is a mistress, she can be kind and the next day she can be cruel. I know its tough to be in your shoes, been there, done that but never forget how tough it can be on the wife and kids who really are at times the silent majority who hold their opinions in check just not to hurt you. If you want to survive this you need to have open and honest communication with your family. If you don't they might not say a thing untill all the belongings are packed in the car and house is empty with a note saying they love you but just can't live like this anymore. Family comes first, period end of story. Your honesty, loyalty and integrety will continue to honor you for all of your days. Aviation will always be there. It goes in cycles. I left flying for almost 10 years and became an attorney. I'm back flying again for the past two years. By the end of this year I will set flying aside and go back into a partnership as an attorney. My family comes first, period. I love flying. Just because you have a day job doesn't mean you can't have fun flying at other times. I am fortunate to have good communication with my family and they are willing to stand by me flying or as an attorney. With the good communication I know which profession they would rather I do. Therefore its not a hard choice for me. Just remember aviation goes in cycles and the merry-go-round will come back around. Go on some "other rides" with the wife and kids for now and keep watching the merry-go-round to see if you want a ride the next time it stops.

Whatever you decide to do, do so with Honor and the Klingon Empire will be proud.

I hate to burst anyone's bubble here but I can tell you from my own experience that If it were not for my very supportive first fiancee and very supportive first wife and very supportive second wife, I would not have been able to support my flying habit and live as well as I have... and that's with NO KIDS. Your husband has chosen to have a family so his number one responsibility is to provide for you and your children right now, not in his dreams as an airline pilot. Your hubby needs to get a grip and get a job... Maybe he can find a line of work that gives him time to fly as a CFI on the side or just fly for fun and not for income.

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