Cops in love - Couple happy as four-year relationship flourishes
Typically, relationships come with obstacles, and when your job presents challenges of its own, it can make the union even more difficult to maintain.
So one would imagine that two members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), based at Mobile Reserve, would face difficulties in a relationship, based on the nature of the job. The truth is, they do.
But for Corporal Derick Francis, a 12-year member of the force, and Woman Constable Shallon Powell, who has served for five years, their four-year relationship will continue to flourish as they are committed to it.
The couple, who were among a group of 40 police officers and their spouses who benefited from a Couples Retreat at Laughing Waters in Ocho Rios last week, are not unfamiliar with relationship problems.
"I wouldn't say it's a walk in the park, in fact, it can be pretty difficult at times, because you have to make time for your own family," Francis admitted.
"Going out together and all of that, and being effective out there, you have to do your job when it's work time; and when it's family time you have to make time, for that also."
He affirmed that the job does not affect their relationship.
LEAVE WORK AT THE WORKPLACE
"No, it doesn't; we don't take work home. Whenever it's work time, we just do work and leave work at the workplace, and home is home. If we have anything that has to do with work, it would be a simple little discussion but we don't take work home."
Powell said the two had known each other for quite some time before the relationship began.
"Communication is the key to every relationship, and sometimes the communication breakdown is as a result of the hours that we have to work at times," Powell explained.
"Sometimes we work out of parish so we don't get to see each other often, but we do try to communicate as much as possible and we try to make time for ourselves. We try to get the same day off so that we can spend time with ourselves and also with our families."
She was asked, did you have to think twice before getting involved with a police officer?
"Before entering the force it was on my mind, and I was told by many not to ever get involved with a police, for several reasons. But knowing him and his personality and everything, it caught me, and he has some characteristics that I am looking for in a partner.
"So it's not the job, it is the person and how we now do our thing, how we communicate and we sacrifice with each other to ensure that we both are happy."
"I am happy. I'm not saying I am happy all the time, but most of the time. Like with every couple, you have your ups and downs and stuff like that, but you have to keep working for it to last. As you can see, we're here now, so whatever we're doing it's working."
He was asked if he expects the relationship to improve as time goes by.
"Most definitely. And the fact that we are here together (at the retreat), we have learnt so much new things on how to communicate properly and when we have small problems, what to say to make some adjustment to let the thing work."
They also admitted that the retreat would benefit them in their relationship and also in their job functions.