->''"Let no tears add to their hardships''\\
''As the soldiers pass along,''\\
''And although your heart is breaking,''\\
''Make it sing this cheery song:''\\
''Keep the Home Fires Burning,''\\
''While your hearts are yearning.''\\
''Though your lads are far away''\\
''They dream of home.''\\
''There's a silver lining''\\
''Through the dark clouds shining,''\\
''Turn the dark cloud inside out''\\
''[='=]Til the boys come home."''\\
-- '''Ivor Novello & Lena Ford''', "[[http://www.firstworldwar.com/audio/keepthehomefiresburning.htm Keep the Home-Fires Burning]]"


Lots of stories are about TheHero and comrades as TheyFightCrime. This story focuses on TheHero's [[MyGirlBackHome lovers, family, and friends back home]], often in a LowerDeckEpisode, as they try keep normal life together and not go crazy from loneliness and worry. British examples will exhibit lots of StiffUpperLip. Romantic partners will find renewed determination that IWillWaitForYou or succumb to AbsenceMakesTheHeartGoYonder.

The usual portrayal involves families of the [[MilitaryAndWarfareTropes military]] and other warriors: soldiers are subject to long, distant deployments with little contact back home, and combat situations always involve the fear of injury and death. Families of police officers, sailors, and superheroes can also feel like this.
* Police Officers & Firefighters: They get regular time off, and they're (usually) home for dinner, but the daily risk of death is still present.
* Sailors (non-military): Long deployments in a dangerous profession, but with fewer enemies actively gunning for your sailor's blood. But there's always the suspicion he's got a girl in every port.
* {{Superhero}}es: Arguably the most stressful for families of all. Regular combat deployment with little warning or time off, since TheHero is always "on call"; enemies out for blood; and if TheHero's [[SecretIdentity identity is secret]], there are few people their loved ones can turn to for support.

Can lead to UnfortunateImplications when the act of waiting is portrayed as passive, the spouse left to endure is AlwaysFemale, or the waiting person is put in a negative light as a NeutralFemale -- happy to stay home while TheHero wanders afield having adventures. Can also deconstruct the facade of a proud military family by realistically depicting the StepfordSmiler-levels of emotional stress and isolation that MyGirlBackHome shoulders with HeroicResolve, as well as the accepted but implicit pain caused when TheHero chooses LovedINotHonorMore.

Children's books about war naturally tend to concentrate on this, because this is where the children are.

The DeterminedHomesteadersWife can be this, if she doesn't wind up the DeterminedWidow. See also HomeSweetHome.

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!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Advertising ]]

* {{Lampshaded}} in [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yDB8p-2pcRo this]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USAA USAA]] ad, "Two Kinds of Heroes."

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Comics ]]

* ''Comicbook/{{Spider-Man}}'': [[FieryRedhead Mary Jane Watson-Parker]] struggles between her desire to support [[ChronicHeroSyndrome Peter Parker]] in his role as Spider-Man and her real fear that ''this'' time could be the night she sent her husband out to die. This is notably a factor in the ComicBook/KravensLastHunt storyline when [[spoiler: for two weeks MJ doesn't know if Peter is dead]].

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film ]]

* The French film ''Film/AVeryLongEngagement'' is about a woman (played by Creator/AudreyTautou) trying to find out what happened to her fiance who fought in UsefulNotes/WorldWarI.
* Colonel Moore's wife, Julie, in ''Film/WeWereSoldiers'' has scenes of this. In one, the taxi driver delivering death notification letters to widows stops at Colonel Moore's house to ask his wife for directions to another house. [[TearJerker She initially thinks her husband has died,]] and is not pleased to find out why she just got the scare of her life.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* ''Literature/YouKnowWhenTheMenAreGone'' by [[http://siobhanfallon.com/ Siobhan Fallon]] is a collection of short stories focused mainly on the inner lives of U.S. military families waiting in Fort Hood. Fallon is herself a military wife.
* [[http://plagiarist.com/poetry/1957/ "Penelope"]], a short and searing poem by DorothyParker, from the perspective of [[Literature/TheOdyssey Odysseus's wife]].
* The poem [[http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/an-ancient-gesture/ "An Ancient Gesture"]] by Creator/EdnaStVincentMillay, also about [[Literature/TheOdyssey Penelope]].
-->Your arms get tired, and the back of your neck gets tight;
-->And along towards morning, when you think it will never be light,
-->And your husband has been gone, and you don't know where, for years.
-->Suddenly you burst into tears;
-->There is simply nothing else to do.
* In a non-romantic version of this, in ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' novel ''ColdDays'', when Harry goes back to visit Chicago, he finds, to his shock [[spoiler:his Godmother, Leanansidhe]] has been keeping his obligations current during his absence. Due to the nature of the benefactor, he is more than a bit concerned.
* ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'': Éowyn was ordered by Théoden and Aragon to stay behind in Edoras, she does not take it well.
* Another non-romantic version: Hestia in ''Literature/PercyJacksonAndTheOlympians'', who stands watch over Olympus while the other gods are off fighting. She even says the trope name in a discussion with Percy and Nico.
* The last book in the ''All of a Kind Family'', ''Ella of All of the Kind Family'', has all the children doing home-front things during WorldWarI. Ella and her best friend fit the romantic side; both have boyfriends in the armed forces.
* Kate Seredy's ''The Singing Tree'' happens during WorldWarII. The farm keeps on plugging with the news in the background, the father having gone off to war, Russian prisoners being brought in to work, and WarRefugees, children, being brought to the farm so they could eat.
* The last AnneOfGreenGables work, ''Rilla of Ingelside'', is about WorldWarI in Canada. The central character is Anne's youngest daughter, who is not really the LoveInterest until the very end.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* ''Series/ArmyWives''
* The ''Series/{{Highlander}}: The Series'' episode "They Also Serve..." focused on the Watchers, the mysterious organization who observed and recorded the constant warfare between the immortals but (theoretically) never interfered in the ongoing fights.
* ''Series/BombGirls''
* The family plotlines on ''Series/RescueMe'' exhibit this trope.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Music ]]

* The British WorldWarI patriotic song "[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keep_the_Home_Fires_Burning_(1914_song) Keep the Home-Fires Burning ('Till the Boys Come Home)]]."
* The [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHXtQQlyaR0 video]] for "This Is Me Missing You" by Music/JamesHouse.
* "It Sucks" by pop-punk band Music/TheUnlovables is about the downsides of this trope.
-->And in a way, I wish I was you
-->Heading cross-country with a dream to pursue
-->I guess til now I never knew
-->How much it sucks to be the one who’s left behind
-->You’re off in the great unknown
-->When I’m stuck here all alone

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Mythology ]]

* Ithaca's queen [[DeterminedHomesteadersWife Penelope]] in ''Literature/TheOdyssey'', of course.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Original ]]

* [[http://blogs.static.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/40324.html Dogs Welcoming Home Soldiers.]] "These reunion videos—for me, at least—shed a tiny beam of light on how emotionally draining being a military family can be. [[PreciousPuppies They'll also make you want a dog.]]"

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Truth In Television ]]

* Ask any career military family.
* Or any police officer's family.
* Any nation with compulsary military service for a large majority of citizens, especially if there is a powerful and hostile neighbour. The stress and anxiety of those left behind after a major deployment is intense.
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