Working on a Fly in Fly out basis has its rewards but it certainly has its down sides when in comes to building or maintaining a relationship. Relationships can be challenging when you are together on a daily basis, just think about the effort they take if you are apart 2 or more weeks at a time.
Communication is a must, although in some cases this can be hard due to the isolated nature of FIFO sites. If you are the partner flying out, make sure that your other half is aware of your dates. When are you coming, when are you going. You could mark up a calendar with your fly in and out dates, so you can plan ahead.
Daily communication may not be possible. If that is the case then let your partner know, so they don’t go through emotional turmoil thinking about what may have happened. You may want to set up certain times and days for your contact, that way your partner at home can plan around it as well. If phones don’t work, emails may still be an option.
For those of you that are the stay home partner, make sue you are available to your partner. It can get very isolated on work sites, it is great to hear from loved ones at home.
Regularly check in with each other to see how you are going with this lifestyle. Depression is a big issue in FIFO world, and a lot of the time it comes down to trying to live up to someone else’s expectations.
2. Planning ahead
Do this together, this can’t be one sided. Plan for the next R&R. What are you going to do? Travel? Catch up with others? Visit that awesome restaurant? Catch up on movies?
Your stay at home partner may have a day job, so they may need to get days off if you want to go away. Or change their routine if their work hours are flexible to get more time with you.
Talk about your priorities on how time will be spent. Make sure that each of you know who is doing what around the house when you are both home. Build a support network of friends, family and even paid help if required to support your plans.
Planning ahead gives both of you something to look forward to, but don’t try to fit everything into one R&R.
3. Set goals
FIFO can give many opportunities, but has its drawbacks, so set some goals. How long do you want to be working FIFO for? What do you want to achieve in that time? Work on it together. Write it down even, then set the steps in place to make your goals happen.
Ensure you are both on board with what you want to achieve. And keep re-evaluating whether you are on track, whether the goal is still the one you want to achieve, whether the lifestyle to support the goal is still the best way to go about it.
Don’t forget intimacy! The pressure to squeeze all the loving into a week can be much, especially with all other things going on. Sex and intimacy is a big thing in any relationship, it is somewhat magnified in FIFO.
You could actually create some intimacy with flirting while you are apart, wither through raunchy messages or phone calls. Although some people are not comfortable with that. And when you are together you could include sensual massages, date nights, time together re-connecting. Sharpen your love language and find out what makes your partner feel you love them.
You may have differing libidos, but don’t forget about sex. Don’t wait for your partner to initiate sex, some people are not comfortable with that. Make sure it doesn’t turn into a chore however.
This one seems to be forgotten most of the time. FIFO requires a certain level of resilience from both partners. You both have to have a positive mind frame toward life and this chosen lifestyle or soon you will find yourself spiralling into depression.
You have to be focused on what you want out of life, and check if you are getting it. Nothing worse than putting all the effort in, sacrificing time with your partner, family and friends just to find that you are not getting ahead. Couple that with harsh, remote conditions, with long work hours and you can have a disaster in your hands if you are not checking into your mind space and see how you are travelling.
FIFO life brings a whole new dimension into a relationship that needs to be managed both with yourself, your partner and friends. For more information, tips or assistance check out Unlimited Results.