Embrace Love and Let Go of Loneliness - Elaine Froese | Canada’s Farm Whisperer | Your go-to expert for farm families who want better communication and conflict resolution to secure a successful farm transition

Blogs

Embrace Love and Let Go of Loneliness

by | Mar 5, 2019 | Farm Family Coaching, Farming Business

Embrace Love and Let Go of Loneliness

February is typically a month of love. Couples being happy and embracing the love between them. But what do you do if loneliness is on your farm? Did you spend February lonely or embraced in love.

Her sniffles were clear on the phone line, she said “He used to spend so much time with me on the weekends, but now that we are married he doesn’t even have time to go to church with me on Sunday morning. I am extremely lonely.”

[Tweet “You don’t have to be #lonely on the #farm. Use these tips to embrace the #love and get closer to your partner.”]

Another much older woman touched my arm to stop me passing by at a farm show. “Elaine, I want to thank you for giving me the best birthday ever. My husband took me out for supper, bought me a card for the first time, and even showed up with flowers! He heard you speak about the power of encouraging in practical ways, and this is the first time in 24 years of marriage he has done anything!”

Okay, this is not written to bash male farm partners, this is a reminder for us all to be careful about how we manage our energy and time on the farm as we desire to build healthier relationships and stay happily married. It is important to embrace love.

When we are feeling lonely, we all get to choose our response. I am not intending any readers to feel “less than” or guilty, I want us to see the issues of loneliness on the farm and create practical solutions.

Workaholics

Farms are not small and they require a lot of work, typically from dusk to dawn. My husband works a lot and is late getting in the house. “Workaholics” are alive and well on farms. The work is never done…or is this a lie you have swallowed? We all get to choose the big rock priorities, and spending time with young children can be worked into a full farm day. Eat supper together, for 30 minutes. Then go back to the job. Ten o’clock at night is not a great time to see young kids who need to be sleeping. I know one young father who reads bedtime stories and tucks his son in, then he heads back out for a few more hours. Consider new solutions to your labour shortage.

Barter Time with Your Neighbours

When my son was pre-school, I had every Tuesday for errands, writing, doing my projects while he played at his friend’s house in town. On Thursdays, the reverse happened, and his friend came to the farm. This sharing of care helped two moms build some reliable space for our priorities beyond child care. If you are a long distance from other young moms, perhaps there is a granny my age who is willing to pitch in. You need to be courageous and ask for help.

Listen to Podcasts and Email the Interviewer

I enjoy Cal Fussman’s “Big Questions” podcast and reached out to encourage him to build his speaking business. Cal has breakfast with Larry King every morning, but that did not stop him from responding to my email. It’s not that hard today to build relationships and be a life long learner. The books you read (or listen to on audible.com) and the people you meet will have a huge impact on helping you feel part of an energized world. My newest book “Building Your Farm Legacy” is on audible.com.

Pick Up the Phone

Use your smartphone as a device to call a friend, not text! Adult interaction is a great gift when you haven’t had an adult conversation in days.  Applications such as Facetime, WhatsApp, Viber or Zoom.us can make this a video call. I call my New Zealand friend  on Viber. Male farmers need this ,too as their emotional support networks die from lack of attention . Everyone benefits when relationships stay connected.

A young farm mom’s tip is to “Call  your mom!”

Send Cards of Encouragement

Mark Twain said, “A person can live on a good compliment for over 3 months.” Don’t worry about picking out a perfect Hallmark card, you don’t have time for that, but do spend time writing out why you love your spouse and seal the letter with a kiss. If your love language is “words of affirmation” you will love cards. If your encouragement is having your spouse clean out the pickup truck, then make that a fun project with help from the kids.

Pray

Spend some time pouring out your thoughts and feelings to a God who truly cares for you and will comfort you. Reading the Psalms can be a reality check as to what it feels like to be lonely and in the pit, but you don’t have to stay there. I believe that God’s comfort is real, so if you call me for coaching, I will also ask if I can pray for you. People who believe in God’s goodness and grace are never alone for we know God is always with us, He has given us the Holy Spirit to comfort and counsel us. Don’t neglect your spiritual side, the woman who wants to go to church goes without her husband and prays he will join her. Our family has chosen not to work on Sundays and our employees love having a guaranteed break weekly.

Unplug from Social Media

You will not die if your phone is left behind in the house for 2 hours.  Binging on Facebook feeds and comparing your farm life in seeding and harvest with the folks having fun on weekends is a joy stealer. Use your social media to reach out to other parents and get together for simple pleasures like weiner roasts, time at the lake, or supper on your pickup tailgate. Bring along a batch of homemade play dough. Plan to gather face to face.

Go Solo if You Have to

Where is it written that you are a horrible spouse if you go to a house concert by yourself? You’ll see lots of your friends and neighbours there. This may be very controversial for marriages that are highly enmeshed, but having new friends when your spouse just wants to re-energize with alone time is not bad. If your spouse refuses to leave the farm for play time or holidays, you can choose a sister, friend or cousin to travel with you.

Break Bread Together

Having folks at my table the best way to conquer “sorry me” feelings.  When you reach out to others to invite them to share supper you can have long uninterrupted conversations while the kids have fun playing legos or you can choose to share the conversation with all generations. Go potluck if you are feeling overwhelmed !

Let me know what you are doing to let go of loneliness on your farm.

Follow Elaine on Social for More Helpful Farm Family Advice!

1 Comment

  1. Mark Erb

    Try ,Guess who is coming for dinner.

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

Categories

Subscribe
To Our Blog & Podcast

Join our mailing list to receive our latest blog post and podcast episodes
to your inbox.

By subscribing, you agree to our Privacy Policy.