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The Captain's Wife
Kate
Posted: Friday, February 20, 2009 9:39 PM
Joined: 01/05/2008
Posts: 41


In the March 09 issue of Dockwalk we look at the interesting position that The Captain's Wife is in.

 

Three of the four Dockwalk staff in shouting distance at our office say they've worked for capt/wife teams and the general sentiment is not very positive. Me, I owe a lot to the first wife I worked for; she was chef and I was stew and she trained me. But guess who washed her pots every night?

 

Yet some of Dockwalk's best writers are or were wives on board and they're lovely people; we can't imagine that they make their crew miserable.

 

So what's your take on the captain's wife? Does she unfairly run the boat or do you wives suffer more than the rest of the crew knows?


Anonymous
Posted: Friday, February 20, 2009 10:37 PM
It's fine as long as the captain is the captain and the wife does not act like an admiral, and also as long as the wife is there because she can do her job she's not just there to make the captain's life better.
Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, February 21, 2009 3:29 AM

As a chef (over 200 ft ) I will never work on captain-wife boats, whatever happens I will be the looser, For me it will be a no win situation.

Even Captains with 2nd stewies or a junior stew could realy F#$@ things up on the boat.

exept if they are real good, and there are only a few teams like that out there..

OP.


Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, February 21, 2009 9:26 AM
The captains wife is inevitably promoted from stewardess to princess.  Very bad for yacht morale when an upper level position on the yacht is blocked off to hard working, loyal crew for future promotion.  The airline pilot doesn't bring his wife along as co pilot.  Keep the wife ashore.
victoriaallman
Posted: Sunday, February 22, 2009 7:25 AM
Joined: 17/05/2008
Posts: 19


What if the Captain's Wife was a long standing crew member who worked in the industry before meeting her husband? Not all wives are in the industry just to be near their partner.
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, February 22, 2009 9:19 AM
You can try and justify your position, but you will not command the respect of crew. Professionalism implies meritocracy, not nepotism. You will be the only crew that can not be fired, disciplined, negotiate holiday time, plea for a pay raise and will stand in the way of a junior crew that is willing to put in the time and effort necessary for promotion. Soon mates, engineers, chefs...will want to bring their girlfriends or wives along.  Will you be able to look them in the eyes and say no ?   Personal life should be kept out of the office.
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, February 22, 2009 8:52 PM

I disagree with all the above, what your saying is, if  your married stay the f*** out of this business because we want that C stew position, so we can get a piece of the captains money, sleep with the captain and get what we want, leave the industry, pay for the house in cash, pay off schools loans.  Then ironically you will be on the beach with one in the oven and your now husband the Captain is sailing with a nice young stewardess. WOW, beware what you wish for.


Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, February 22, 2009 9:32 PM

It's an inferior complexity that woman have with women.  If it’s not the Captain’s wife, it’s the Chief stewardess.  In general I’ve seen over more that 20 years that women in general don’t except constructive criticism well and even worse from a female.


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 3:42 AM
Yes, I have seen captain's significant others promoted without merit and everyone pays for this oversight...including guests and owners. I will also say, going from just the chef to the captain's wife, totally alters your outlook and daily life. You suddenly consider every decision and scrutinize crewmembers' attitudes wholly differently, because now they are a reflection of you and can affect the way you and your partner are perceived by the owners. You do look at everything in a new light, and I admit to "reporting" to my husband when crewmembers are slacking off or have concerns they may not feel have been addressed clearly. I will also say being a captain's wife gives me invaluable insight when I do freelance with other captains...I know what they are dealing with.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 5:43 AM

The previous post is on the money. Speaking from 13 yrs experience and having worked my way through the ranks with my husband, being a Captains wife is defintely not easy. Without a doubt, you are usually perceived in a negative light. It is made more frustrating when crew ( particularly junior crew) make assumptions about your past. Unfortunately they may assume that you have gained your position via association and not earned it- this happens too frequently I think. I have even heard of positions such as Captains secretary being created in order to have their partner onboard. So to all those crew out there who have had a bad experience with a Capt/Wife team, please be mindful that there are some very ethical, knowledgable, hard working and experienced teams out there.


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 6:41 AM

Well said! As Chief Stew married to the Captain, I'm the last one to bed at night and the first awake. A boat has to be harmonious and a happy boat equals a happy crew.

We've also got to remember why we're in this industry - the love of being at sea, folks! Not everyone's born to live on land and when you find a partner who's just as keen then why not work together?


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 7:49 AM
All is true with what you say and you very well might be well qualified for the job,  but the fact remains .....you block advancement of junior crew and you can not be fired.   Your crew will know that they are working a dead end.   How will you motivate your crew ?   As captain the only way  I can  motivate and keep  crew is thru  the promise of promotion.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 1:23 PM
To the above poster,  one question; what promise of promotion do you give your first mate?  I think that people realistically should realize that on many boats, there is No possibility of promotion.  That possibility may exist on your next boat, but only if you do a darn good job in your present position. A good deckhand may become a good mate and eventually a captain, but a junior stew is unlikely to become the chef. A captain and wife team whom are BOTH professionals always manage a yacht better together.  And I fear the only ones to dispute this may be those trying  to "get ahead" by being overly friendly with the captain.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 2:19 PM

A mate is at the very top of his game and can only move to a new yacht as captain.   Every other crew should be able to work up to mate....every crew should be able to work up to chief stew of chef.  I can introduce you to a dozen young girls that are working as stews, training to be chefs.   The wife  girlfriend stands in the way....

 "I think that people realistically should realize that on many boats, there is No possibility of promotion."  

This is a classic example of  the corrosive effects of nepotism.   Thank god that our society does not operate along similar lines. 


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 2:28 PM
So, the economic hard times take a bite on your yacht.  The owner asks the captain to reduce crew levels.  Is the captain going to lay off his girlfriend ?  or the mate ?  or the lowly stewardess that can probably do the girlfriends job at half wage.  What will it be ?
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 3:02 PM
Regarding " Corrosive effects of nepotism", I meant it is just simple math sometimes, if you run a 4 crew yacht, you have (1) captain, + (1) Chef, +(1) stewardess, +(1) deckie = 4,  your chance for promotion in this scenario is very slim. I'm not sure where your accusations of nepotism come from??? Also, the last poster should READ the title of this forum... It is not a discussion about some chick the skipper is shagging.  It is his Wife... And it is a given fact that if you are hired as a couple, you will likely leave as a couple and not be split up in order for a stewardess to act as cook to save the owner some bucks!
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2009 4:11 PM
Ive worked with girlfriends as crew.  Many different girlfriends !!!!  I can tell you  its fun, but its not optimal.  I don't feel comfortable giving orders or running my girlfriend into the ground.  Many times I work the transatlantic 2 season sailing yachts . I'm not sure how many of you have done this before, but I can assure you that its full on 25,000 miles with 175 days of guest sailing. I just got my schedule,  April depart  Spain, first pickup Istanbul may 1, then a virtually back to back, super fun ,sail until you drop, cruise until  mid Oct.  I can burn out the best crew.  I burn out girlfriends.  It bothers me, now I prefer girlfriends that have a land job.  Perhaps they can even rescue me if I burn up !! 
Anonymous
Posted: Friday, February 27, 2009 9:42 PM

I have personally worked for only one capt/wife team, but the one experience left me with the feeling that I would never do it again. Both were extemely opinionated and could never, under any circumstance, be wrong. Never ever, no matter what, could they admit the least bit of fault. Nor could they lift the slightest finger to make us feel anything but uncomfortable. It was THEIR boat, we were just temporary help, no matter how well we performed our duties and/or got on with the owner and guests.

 


Anonymous
Posted: Friday, February 27, 2009 10:19 PM
I worked for both extremes as mate: The worst: 90 foot sailboat, c's wife nightmare. C got sick with boss on, asked me to drive the boat. Qualified, insurance told etc. Comes to parking and thewife is screaming ate telling me how Ishould do it. Bear in mind she has never driven a boat in her life. I resigned and the owner offered me the captain's job. I refused, you have to have standards, even if they are low. Best one: Next job, captain's wife again chef, me againate, bigger boat. C put his wife on watch with me so be could sleep. Never a word of many misdemeanours got back to him and wife always came to me if she had a problem not the captain. Godfather to their 4 kids these days. Verdict: 2 was great fun, 1 was so horrid. Worked with a girl once when I became captain, she wanted to run the boat instead of me. Never again.
Jean
Posted: Tuesday, March 10, 2009 10:50 AM
Joined: 10/03/2009
Posts: 3


Anonymous wrote:
The captains wife is inevitably promoted from stewardess to princess.  Very bad for yacht morale when an upper level position on the yacht is blocked off to hard working, loyal crew for future promotion.  The airline pilot doesn't bring his wife along as co pilot.  Keep the wife ashore.

I agree with you. Its not only the blocking off for any promotion, at my end its more of getting in the way of the things i used to do as the Chief Stew. Now that they came in package, she thought she is the Admiral trying to change and reinvent the system. Its good if its helpful and something to be learned, but sorry its not.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, March 11, 2009 3:12 PM

As a Captain, worked ONCE with my girl of two years...she had extensive experience but as so many others have said, she thought she was the ADMIRAL. Never again, had the worst verbal fights and was not comfortable for anyone on board...also the hot stew was giving it to the owner...what a mess.

Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, March 22, 2009 1:19 PM
I think some people are a little jaded. Everyone keeps talking about promotion - the only way there is promotion on the boat is if one crew member leaves or is fired. Yes a stew can become a chef, deck to mate and so on, but is the Captain really going to fire one because someone else has the qualifications to do the job? In a large majority of cases people go to school and get the education and usually leave the boat to find another job, be realistic. You a bashing Captain/wife teams but can't the same be said for Captain/best friend situation. You think a Captain wouldn't do that for his buddy? As the wife of a Captain, when I do wrong I get pulled aside and get yelled at, when it is time for a salary increase it is decided by the boss...So for you who have never been in this position it is easy to make assumptions. Don't assume to know anything about me or how I do my job, because you have no idea.
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, March 22, 2009 3:30 PM

Promotion, promotion, promotion….The average crew stay no more than six months.  In my 20 years as Captain, only around 15 percent stay past a year. 

 

You work on the boat in the position you were hired in expecting all crew will stay for there intended contract time.  If and when the higher position becomes available you would be the first suitable candidate provided you had the qualities to deserve the position, again proven qualities, not because you FEEL you deserve it. 

 

My crew always knew were they stood because they had monthly reviews by me, the mentoring part of my job, where brutal honesty is the only way.  They appreciated the transparency and no cheap shots or gossip was felt.   

 

My wife has worked by my side for 5 out of 20 years and nothing less than fair treatment and clear understanding of the position.  Where I gave the promise of seeing it through was in monetary supplement, meaning the day you were hired you knew how much your raise was going to be based on performance, you knew how you were performing with a objective list of points taking away all subjectivity, again as fair and transparent as possible.  That was my guarantee to the crew.

 

It always is and will always be the Captains boat.  I am the caretaking body, authority by the owner, for the owner and for his liabilities.  Some take this as cavalier, but really don’t have the depth to understand truly what these words really mean.  You are there to do a job having a conversation with owner or thinking you have a relationship with them is beyond your job description. God speed.


Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, March 22, 2009 4:42 PM
I am currently working with a captain/ wife team and i can say that i would never do it again. Especially since we have a spaz captain and is completely bias towards her. She could get away with murder, and if he confronted her about something, she would make his life a living hell, which in turn would make the crews life a living hell. The team would have to be extremely professional in order for it to work
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, March 22, 2009 10:30 PM
My last yachting experience was with a captain and his Asian girlfriend. She was actually married to his best mate, who was her sisters boyfriend. Whilst the girlfriend could not do the foreign trips due to her visa and fear of getting caught rorting the system, she could come aboard and boss everyone around when in local waters. Even though her English was minimal, soon as her resident visa came through, she could divorce here sisters boyfriend and move aboard permanently.  I was then made redundant. 

Anonymous
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2009 12:06 AM

I currently work for a Captain/Wife "team" and in my 10 years in the industry, have worked for several....and had vowed I would never do it again.  The "team" I work for now are....OK!!!  I am 1st Officer and she would never dream to tell me or any of my Deckhands how to do their job, she is not invloved in many confidential crew matters (i.e. firing of crew, promotion of crew) and mostly does not "pillow talk" about things that the Captain really does not need to know - however, in 2 years I have NEVER seen her make a bed, do a turndown or even vacuum or dust the boat when we have 24hr turnarounds.  Because I am outside helping the team to wash down, we finish first and often help the interior to finish up, whilst she sits on her throne researching their next vacation!!  That drives me crazy!!!

Other Captains wives I have worked with....well, its been a joke!  The Captain arrives to work at 11am on Monday morning having driven from his house where he has been for the weekend - but thats ok because he is the boss and he has earned the right to do that.  I need to leave my house at 6.00am to get to work for 8.00am, the Chief Engineer leaves at 5.30am to be there by 8.00am.....so why the hell should the Chief Stewardess wander in at 11.00am....guess why - because she is the Captains Wife!!  Many of the boats I worked on, the crew liked to keep fit but sometimes it can be difficult if you finish work just a little bit late or it is still too dark in the morning to run before work - but if you're the Captains wife you can just finish work a little bit earlier or start a little bit later!! And....the boat where no one is to leave the boat whilst we are on charter - fi you want to walk around, have a look in your break thats fine, but absolutely no going out in the evening under any circumstances - unless you are the Captains wife and your husband wants to take you out for dinner!!

I can respect some Captains wives, the ones that worked their way up and still work.  The ones that behave as a crew member are treated as another crew member.....the ones that behave as the Captains wife are treated like the Captains wife ....its your choice!!!


Anonymous
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2009 3:39 AM
I think you certainly put words to page well! Wives, girlfriends and captains should take these posts here to heart. Preferential treatment doesn't ever work and it is always taken not of. Much better to all work together as a team, and enjoy the rewards together (not necessarily "together" but in a fair way) and perhaps have to suffer a bit together too. After all when it comes down to it everyone is in the same boat!
gmsyacht
Posted: Monday, April 27, 2009 10:43 PM
Joined: 25/05/2008
Posts: 1


Whether you are talking about the captain's wife or most other possible problems aboard, I believe all of it relates to insecurities/ego's (which are two words for the same negative issue).  Aboard our boat, we try to have yachting without insecurities...a very tough mountain to climb, but mostly possible with mature crew.  (Nothing is ever perfect)  We try to hire sweet people with really great hearts and help them to become an important part of our team.  If you have great Owners, then hopefully they pick a great captain and then he/she picks a great crew.  If the captain's wife does not have the maturity and inner strength to handle the seperation between her personal life with her husband versus her professional life with her captain, then the captain has to train her in the difference (yeah, right), or not have her on the boat he is in charge of...or the option of both of you leaving the vessel.  Tough decisions, but keeping an admiral aboard is NOT an option.  If you accept the captain's pay every month, you are accepting the fact that you are in charge of the vessel...wear the hat or give the money back.  My wife works aboard and if she ever became the 'admiral', I would be forced to quit my job and figure out my next step, but I could not stay aboard and let the Owner's wonderful boat be ruined (and my captain reputation of 25 years).  I know that there are great captain's wives out there and I salute them with all the respect I have, but for all the one's that are witches and try to control many things/people aboard that are not their responsibility, shame on you for being a part of the problem in yaching.  Every single crew member here knows that the only reason the boat was built was for the Owners and their Guests to have the best time of their lives...all of us must keep that focus and always be a part of the solution.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, June 17, 2009 9:27 PM
I think the Chief stews whether they are married to the captain or not are the biggest problem on every boat that I have worked on, 8 years in the industry. I have yet to meet a sane one.
Azzag
Posted: Saturday, June 20, 2009 11:59 PM
Joined: 05/02/2009
Posts: 8


Over the years I have worked for several Captain and wife teams and I am now part of such a team. The only way it can work is for the Captain to have enough personal strength to not show favoritism towards the partner in a professional sense and it is up to the partner to understand that the Captain's job is to set and maintain the standards onboard, there is no room for an ego trip.

The problem seems to arise when the partner become involved in running multiple departments. For a crew to work in a harmonious manner every department head must feel that they are trusted and valued by the Captain equally and professionally. It is only then that the more junior crew will feel confident in their superiors.

On the boats I have run over the past few years my partner and I have a clear understanding where our respective responsibilities lay. The Chef does not tell the Chief Stew how to do their job and visa versa, the same goes for the Mate and the Engineer.

Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, June 21, 2009 1:16 PM
With that attitude, you are right, you WILL indeed "always be the loser". Couldn't have put it better myself. Sounds like you need your own attitude adjustment.
Henning
Posted: Saturday, July 4, 2009 4:01 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


It really depends on how advanced the relationship is, and how secure they both are in it. It's a tricky bit. I've run boats and had my GF as crew. More often than not, it was just the two of us as crew, but sometimes more. Even as such, there are strains. It really is difficult because you're together 24/7 and you actually have two distinct relationships, a work relationship and a personal relationship. Trick is, both parties need to keep them separate. Professional critique must be viewed (and given) on the work level and not brought brought into the personal relationship. This is tougher than it sounds, especially when you end up with larger crews. The potential issues are boundless. You have to be secure in yourself and personal relationship and dedicated to your professional duties or it will not work out. Jealousy/infidelity and laziness are the biggest problems I see.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2009 4:27 PM
Great topic – not such a great read. Your article left me feeling as disappointed as watching Kevin Costner’s ‘Water World’ . Captain – Wife teams are one of the most fiery topics onboard and to write about such a controversial topic in such a lame ‘I don’t want to step on anybodys toes’ kind of way kills the purpose. Do you job right and or if you are planning to hardly touch the surface, perhaps to be diplomatic, don’t do it at all.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2009 6:58 PM

Curious...to the last poster, are you speaking about the online article or the one that ran in the magazine? Thanks.


Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2009 7:00 PM

Water World was a great movie

And I think the article was quite good as well.


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2009 2:47 AM
I currently work aboard a boat with a captain/stew husband/wife team. It is the most obusive, hostile environment I have ever been in. The owners are fantastic, but they do not see what goes on behind their backs. The captain is rude, no manners, no respect, and threatens me on a daily basis. The stew/wife runs every aspect of the boat, even telling me (chef) how to do my job. I walk on egg shells every day and am constantly afraid to do the wrong thing to anger one, or the other, or both. Is my only option to quit? I'm a good chef, mild mannered, respectful, no trace of arrogance, and completely confused how these two can live with themselves at the end of the day. Anyone have suggestions? I have started documenting specific examples of this behavior...
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2009 2:27 PM

Yeah, switch jobs if you can. Sounds miserable for you - let them be miserable without you. Not all husband/wife teams are like that!


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2009 7:30 PM
My partner and I have just left a boat a little over a month ago because of a chief stew/captain team. I completely blame the captain. It's his job to make sure the boat is run in a professional matter and he made this boat into his own personal soap opera. Letting her sleep in till noon, nap in the afternoon, having manicures and hair appointments, lunch ashore with friends while we were ON CHARTER!! It was disgusting watching him let her run the boat. I've never seen a captain be such a jerk to the crew and be so afraid of his wife. Captains either leave the wife at home or find a new career if you can't hack it living on a boat with her. Just because your not man enough to stand up to your wife don't take it out on the crew. It's the captains responsibility to run the boat and be professional and be someone the crew can look up too.
Anonymous
Posted: Friday, September 4, 2009 3:26 PM

Captain/wife team,

I've had both; on one boat they were great, professional helpful kind and efficient. They were a lovely couple and loved each other greatly. I have much respect for them and even miss them. The other boat was a complete nightmare. She had no training and refused to do any. Controlled everything including her husbands free will. She even sabotaged all attempts to do things correctly and he would say nothing. The Captain could not make a decision without her and they both protected their offspring to death, even when they were drunk or violent (yes the mate, chief stew, stew and deck hand were family). They would cover for them and when they slept-in every morning the rest of the crew had to do their work for them. When the crew complained they were either ostracized, ignored or fired. They were eventually responsible for breaking a crew member's neck who is paralyzed for life but they were allowed to carry on because they all lied together and covered for each other. The Captain was the absolute worst i had ever had the misfortune, no decisions were ever made, he was weak and feeble, no courage, negligent, irresponsible, dangerous and idiotic. He even ate at the table with his fingers in the serving dishes and, of course seeing this, so did all the family as well. (they were upset because i refused to eat with them)

Given these two, i'll run away next time unless i'm convinced that the couple is seriously professional.


Barry
Posted: Saturday, September 5, 2009 6:28 PM
Joined: 02/06/2008
Posts: 5


Just look at all of the anonymous posts!  - CHICKENS!

I have worked with my wife (capt and stew / chef)  for years and outside of a couple of people I would say that most would work with us again and we would work with them again given the chance. Boat crew needs to be a well oiled machine and know that they can trust the other person(s) with their life. I always told crew to come to me with any problems weather it be with be with me, my wife, another crew member or anything in general, if they had a problem with something that my wife did or said then it is my job as captain to do something (usually fire the complainer - just kidding) about the situation. I have heard all of the storys about teams and even witnessed a few myself. Teams that allow personal life to interfear with their job will sink the ship, you have to beable to put any differances asside and do your jobs and if you can not do that then you both have failed.  

 There are alot of premadonas and drama queens in this industry.


Pelagic
Posted: Sunday, September 6, 2009 7:12 AM
Joined: 06/09/2009
Posts: 1


The key point many of you are missing is that a good Captain will recognize the pros and cons of having his SO working on board and professionally recognize whether it is working or not.

 

If the captain is a [removed by moderator] whipped flake, I think it is the crew’s professional obligation to discuss real problems with him and failing a workable solution, inform the Owner.

 

As a mature captain/manager, running a super yacht worldwide with no base, it feels like a 24 hr job and a lonely administrative command.

 

A workable solution for me is to bring my partner on board as my guest (without pay) when we are repositioning or on long standby. We use that time to strengthen our relationship while at the same time cover for my crew to give them some extra vacation (pay back time). She helps out in many ways, but is not obligated to….. and “pillow talk” about crew is definitely taboo.

 

Before the Owner’s arrive, she leaves and I am ready to greet them with a personal balance that makes me a better captain, who does not need to find solace in bars or with one night stands.

 

Just remember, captain’s have needs to. 

 


Anonymous
Posted: Monday, September 7, 2009 4:56 PM
Man! Why is everyone here so against the Wife and not the Husband? I worked two seasons ago for a small private yacht in the caribbean, with a women captain and her husband, the chef. As a stewardess, should I have been pissed off that I could never be promoted to Chef because the Captain's husband had the job?! No! If I wanted to be chef, I would work very hard for my current boat so as to get a good reference, and then leave and find a Chef job. Not sit there and whine and complain because the Captain and Chef are married and I have no chance of being promoted! It seems to me that 90% of these posts where written by stews or chief stews pissed off that there is a women above them on the totem pole. Get over it, its your job to listen to senior crew! Maybe its only because there are so many more Male Captains than Female, but this whole forum comes off as incredible sexist and selfish!
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, September 13, 2009 5:39 AM
How many captains girl friends/wifes are 2 nd stews, or stay 2 nd. for very long? Amazing how quickly they get promoted! How many engineers wifes/ girl friends are chief stews ,in fact apart from the captain how many other crew have their wifes on board ? I have worked on a few boats with the admiral/princess influencing the running of the boat. My moto find another boat. I admit that there are exceptions and that there are great chief stews ,but they are not very common .
Anonymous
Posted: Monday, September 14, 2009 1:48 AM
A few years back, I worked as stewardess for a captain (husband), chef (wife) team, we also had a deckhand. She totally was the boss, and ruled her husband and the crew. The captain was unable to see how ruthless and down right mean she was. The stewardess position changed frequently because of her (5 in one year). In hindsight I now realize she poisioned my food as a punishment, among other abuses. She insisted that we sit in a designated place for meals and she would dish up our food. How low can you go really? Still the captain could not see it, even when brought to his attention, perhaps he was afraid of her.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, October 14, 2009 6:21 PM
I once worked as an engineer on a smaller boat where the Captain/Chief stew lived ashore. How often was she onboard? maybe 5% of the time! Life is sweet for some.
Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, October 17, 2009 5:57 PM
I can go one better. I am the captain, and I'm forced to work with the managers wife on board. She is the most useless employee in the entire industry. I cannot fire her, or I will get fired. Plain and simple. So my standards are down the toilet so the manager can feather his personal needs. What do you do? Captain jobs are rare as hens teeth this year
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, November 5, 2009 7:14 PM

Im in the same boat as a lot of you, I have had problems in the past with the ADMIRAL. I dont feel that it is good for the rest of the crew at all. Unfortunaltly the accomodations in the crew areas on most yachts are designed for it. But is it the "captains wife" syndrome or "the chief stew" attitude? Granted im not descriminating against stews or females at all, please dont jump on me for that!

I just dont think its healthy for the crew and it makes everyone unconfortable. How many yachts out there have the policy of not dating or having relations with other crew members? The boat I worked on had that rule, but guess what! The captains wife was still the ADMIRAL.

To all the captain's wives out there, im not saying to stay ashore, but think about the rest of us the next time you piss off the captain!


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, November 5, 2009 11:44 PM
very well said
Henning
Posted: Friday, November 6, 2009 12:48 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


Anonymous wrote:To all the captain's wives out there, im not saying to stay ashore, but think about the rest of us the next time you piss off the captain!

If you are saying that she pisses of the captain and he takes it out on the rest of the crew, then the problem is with the captain and not his wife.
Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, March 13, 2010 6:05 AM
It is a little disappointing that the woman in this situation is getting all the blame. If the male captain is showing favoritism towards his wife that is causing problems aboard, then shouldn't we be pointing the finger at him too? Shouldn't they BOTH find a new profession ashore? To me it's not about the possibility of promotion. Crew members give up a lot to work on boats no matter what your goals are for advancement or how long you want to be in the industry. People do it for many reasons, but I think that an adventurous and enjoyable lifestyle is desired by all. Because of the unique living situation of the industry, bad management can seep into every aspect of your life and take away your enjoyment on AND off the boat. I was just on a large boat that was managed by the Captain and his wife... We never heard much from the captain, but his wife made our lives a living nightmare. She openly insulted crew members, constantly talked down to people, and never said anything positive. She would even talk openly about how her marriage was all a routine. But once I got to know the captain, I realized that he wasn't much different... just a little less vocal! TOGETHER they created an overall negative, rigid, and controlling atmosphere that constantly brought the crew down. Professionalism has to come from BOTH sides for the team thing to work. I am a stewardess married to a chef. We've been together for nine years now, are both in the hospitality industry, and decided that we wanted to do the boat thing for a while. No matter what my or my husband's position is onboard, I would never treat others the way the crew was treated on my last boat. To me, it all comes down to good management or bad management... and ultimately, the responsibility lies with the captain.
 
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