Many of you know that Rick and I had the privilege of traveling to Arkansas City, Kansas (pronounced R-Kansas) in order to lead a seminar at the Police Department on law enforcement marriage survival. Since a few have asked for a report of sorts, here are a few of the highlights:
Before our first day's training, we had several hours to kill. Chief assigned us to officers for ride-a-longs, something I swore I would never do again after a high-speed pursuit with Rick many moons ago. Yet, it was a good time to view the town, get to know a couple of great officers, and see another department in action. The guys we rode with were very patient in their "babysit-a-speaker" duties. Thanks, y'all!
I'm sure there were those who sniffed their nose at the idea of a seminar of this nature, but by the time the dust had settled, all attending officers and their spouses felt it worthwhile and extremely helpful in the insight it gave. Plus, we gave multiple snack and restroom breaks, a must-have in law enforcement training so I'm told.
Statistics report a 65 - 80% divorce rate in LE families,
and in my opinion, it is becoming critical to include this type of training
for officers and their spouses. Let's think about it...a typical
officer is taught how to survive on the street. He is given crucial
information that can save his life, his career and his sanity, but what
is not being discussed is how to save his marriage, thus the need for Law Enforcement Marriage 101.
One thing that will always stand out in my mind, is an officer who mentioned that he had been through a divorce, but said that after hearing the information presented, now realized some of the major factors contributing to the break up. In the future, he would not let the same things hinder another relationship. Great news!
Several couples who came were either struggling or had been through a struggle recently. Each felt that they had learned things to better prepare them for the fight...the fight for their marriage, that is.
One department two hours away, sent five officers! It just goes to show you how desperately needed this type of training is becoming.
The overall feedback from the training was positive and hopefully left some useful tools that each of these officers and their spouses can put into practice.
One last note, Ark City's Chief, Sean Wallace, has put in for retirement so he can begin a new career with the U.S. State Department and with the Guatemala National Police Service! Congratulations, Chief! Thank you for all the love and care you have had for these officers, and for your hard work and dedication. I know you will be missed.
Until next time,