Being a line pilot is the best part of the career so far, but it also has its challenges.
The job can be exhausting, both mentally and physically. Pilots are responsible for hundreds of lives in a single flight, and they make important decisions about the safety of those flights.
It isn't easy for the person who's married to or partnered with a pilot either, starting with the long initial training period away from home.
If the relationship can last through the random scheduling, the missed holidays and milestones, the jealousies, and other various challenges involved with being—and being with—an airline pilot, then maybe, just maybe, the pilot and their significant other will reach a point of contentment and relief.Chanel Cleeton is the author of the e-books Flirting with Scandal, Playing with Trouble, and Falling for Danger. Saying another plane is cooler is tantamount to hitting on another man. Feel silly introducing a grown man as “Havoc” or “Spiderman”? Call signs replace first names and you will learn to think of your man’s call sign as his alter ego and even refer to him as such. Mild-mannered husband by day, badass fighter pilot by night. Against your best intentions, you will learn the words. So if you ever need to needle your fighter pilot (and let’s be honest, you probably will), a well-timed If fighter pilots say something mundane that could also be construed as sexual, they follow it up with “so to speak.” Basically, “that’s what she said.” Yes, it’s annoying. They can take thrill seeking to extremes and that extends to lots of aspects of their lives.If the pilot is coming out of the military, the training environment is one that they've probably experienced before.But if they've built their experience in the civilian world—being a flight instructor, towing banners, or something similar—they're probably as clueless about the process as their loved one.Often, the last thing they want to do is hop on another airplane.
A pilot who attains seniority can bid for a schedule that suits their needs, making it possible for them to—finally—be home on Christmas and attend important school functions for their kids.After training, a pilot's time home is often brief, and then they'll be off to their reserve location, which means that they have to live near the airport in case they are called upon to fly.It is also a temporary situation, fulfilled while the pilot waits to "fly the line" at their regular gig, but that doesn't mean it's not challenging.For an unlucky number of pilots, their relationships or marriages end due to one or more of the challenges that come with the job.And those who are trying to make a partnership work often have to spend a good deal of time explaining the ins and outs of the career to their significant others.Once a pilot is done with sim training, they often just want to decompress.