The Struggles of a Chef Wife

There are a lot of things I enjoy about being married to a chef . . . great food (when he’s home to cook), help with meal planning, having someone who can fix my mistakes in the kitchen (over the phone or via text), free samples that appear in our home from vendors, menu tastings at his restaurant, his creativity . . . the list could go on and on.  A lot of the sterotypes we hear about being married to a chef ARE true, sometimes.   Not as often as people think, but yes, occasionally they are true.

But just like everything, with the good comes the bad.  Being married to a chef isn’t about enjoying 5 course meals every night.  (And if you think it is, please stop reading this post and read this first.)  In the 19 1/2 years we have been married, there have been a lot of things I have really struggled with as a result of my husband’s career.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love that he is a chef and know it’s the perfect job for him.  But that doesn’t make it easy for either of us.  We’ve had many discussions over the years of how hard it is to be a successful chef, husband and father all at the same time.  He runs himself ragged doing just that and I am blessed to be married to him.

The Struggles of a Chef WifeWhile it’s not easy for him to wear all 3 of those hats and to do them well, it’s just as hard for me at home.  So for the next few weeks, I’m going to get very personal here on the blog.

It’s not easy to open up and share things that I really struggle with.  But the more I get to know you, the more I know I am not alone.

Here’s a glimpse of some of the topics to come (in no particular order):

  • Midweek days off
  • Scheduling Dr. appointments, car appointments
  • Loneliness
  • Anger and resentment
  • Going places alone
  • Working on holidays
  • Long hours
  • Unknown schedule
  • Worrying about his safety
  • How the job takes a toll on his body
  • Sick kids
  • Parenting responsibilities
  • Housework
  • Working opposite hours
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Stress
  • Job changes
  • Missing him A LOT
  • Yard work
  • How different our life is than other couples

A few days ago I asked what you struggled with as the wife or girlfriend of a chef in this Facebook post.  If you have something to add, I’d love to know in that post or in the comments below.

From one chef’s wife to another,




Follow Jennifer @ Emulsified Family’s board Married to a Chef on Pinterest.


  1. Stacey

    so true I love the support and feeling of other couples like me 🙂 from great Britian !

    • Jennifer

      It’s so nice to not feel alone, isn’t it! 🙂 Thanks Stacey!

  2. Sara

    I’m so glad I found your blog. I wanted to cry reading this, after a really rough week of diffrent schedules and the stress of my husbands spring menu planning this was a nice reminder that I am not alone. Thank you for sharing! It was much needed

    • Jennifer

      Glad you found me. So sorry it has been a tough week. I hope the new menu goes well and you get a little time together soon!

  3. Shannon Hall

    I’m excited to read more of this series! I don’t struggle with many of these things yet, since we are recently married and don’t have kids, but it will be great to read about it and I’m sure I will relate to more than I think! And see what my future will be like. 🙂

    • Jennifer

      And maybe you won’t. We are all different! Is it funny to say I hope you can’t relate to them? You know what I mean! 🙂

  4. Christina

    I feel very lucky to have worked as a bartender/server at a restaurant with my hubby (this was where we met) so i have first hand experience with the madness that is chef life. One of the things i have been struggling with just lately though is the young server girls that practically throw themselves at him!!! And they know he is married with a baby at home! A 19 yr old actually tried to kiss him the other day!! He did not kiss her, just totally caught off guard. He told me right away, he is a very honest and loyal man- we’ve been together for 10 yrs now and married for 3 – we are best friends . My hubby is executive sous chef and is “tall dark and handsome”, not to mention charismatic and just an all around nice guy in the kitchen (not like a lot of the sketchy guys usually in a kitchen). And he usually doesnt wear his wedding ring cuz it will get in the way and get dirty. Its like if the girls arent reminded all the time that i exist, they think hes fair game. I find the young servers these days to be extra skanky too. I feel like i need to go visit him at work with our cute baby constantly to reclaim my terratory. Has anyone ever experienced anything like this?! I also wanna punch that server….

    • Jennifer

      Frustrating. Probably a good think you didn’t punch the server though. 🙂 Grrr! Glad he’s loyal and that you guys talked about it! That’s great. 🙂

    • Kerri Taimanglo

      Yes, yes, yes- it seems like no matter what the girls go after them- even if they know they are married and have children


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