The Top 5 (and most ridiculous) Firefighter Myths

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Have you heard some ridiculous things about firefighters? These crazy ideas are out there… floating around during dinner time conversation with distant family and strangers you meet day to day.

From sliding-down-the-pole innuendos to each station having a Dalmatian, things get interesting when I say that my husband is a firefighter.

But the thing about these firefighter myths, while they sound crazy, some people actually believe they are true! So I’m here to set the record straight about the funny firefighter stereotypes that you might here about.

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So without further ado, here’s the top Firefighter Stereotypes  

All Firefighters are hot


Hold up. I have heard this a countless number of times, followed by “because I have a single friend”

I mean, are these even really firefighters? or just models?

Maybe it was the years of firefighter calendars, or maybe it was the knight in dirty turnouts that saved the little old lady who then told her book club about his butt… Firefighters have been seen as attractive for years! 

But sadly, we know thats not always the case. Some of our fire family aren’t attractive according to traditional beauty standards- and thats just fine with me.

I don’t need someone showing up shirtless to rescue me from a burning building. I also don’t play into the hype that you need to be good looking to be a firefighters- but I guess it helps with the ladies! 

Can I get an Amen?

So for all you attractive firefighters- great job setting the bar high for everyone else. Having a six pack is NOT a requirement for being a firefighter- but it can help, cardio is important!

Firefighters will fill your pool, get your lost cat from a tree, and get the mouse outa ya house!

If you know, you know.

Now I’m going to put this disclaimer in here for those in the public reading this getting their panties in a wad. Yes, Firefighters are tax payer funded. And yes, they do occasionally help the animals and other random acts of civil service.

In fact, they do this gladly!

But when they are getting cats and filling pools, it does two very bad things to the community.

  1. it takes away from valuable training time that could be necessary to save your life. When seconds matter, training is of the utmost importance.
  2. It makes firefighters seem more like a parks and rec department and not the true (and often unnoticed) community heroes that they are. Firefighters die, literally by the 100s each year, in service to the community. By pulling over to let fire trucks pass, and advocating for proper station staffing in your community, you can ensure that everyone gets to go home!

Firefighters are all Dogs (Dalmatians of course 😉

I’m going to be honest here. When my husband first said he wanted to become a firefighter, I thought, ‘oh great, he’s going to be stationed with a bunch of womanizing assholes’. 

SORRY… turns out the firefighters he works with are fantastic.

While there’s always one or two dogs- All firefighters are certainly not that way. Since my husband has become a firefighter, I’ve heard it all. This is a badly perpetuated myth that people just don’t seem to understand, especially when it comes to firefighter divorce rates!

From supposed wild trysts to being a sex addict- Firefighters get a bad rap when it comes to being a dog. They are just supposed to be “irresistible when the put on bunker gear”- UGH. This isn’t Hollywood people!

Even the female firefighters get a bad rap, they get called horrible names and made out to be these women who are having an identity crisis. That is rarely the case.  (And don’t even get me started on what firefighters call the opposite sex- not all women are hose chasers and badge bunnies).

There is also the stigma that they are inherent cheaters.

Again, there are some people that can’t stay faithful, but that is certainly not always the case for our fire family. The honest truth is that they would cheat whether they were firefighters or teachers. 

firefighter, fire family

So please, let’s lay this one to rest and do our best to educate the public. We are a lot nicer than we seem.

And that young bachelor whose playing the field- give him some guidance so he can stop filling his life with meaningless flings. Or at least don’t have him brag about being a firefighter. Jakes. no common sense. 

Firefighters just hang out at the station all day

You’ve heard it. I’ve heard it. It’s probably the top firefighter myth no matter where you live at. 

Depending on the day, my response varies from laughter to pure annoyance.

If you catch me in a really bad mood, I’ll start spouting statistics about medical calls and response times (trust me, you don’t want to see the education I give an unsuspecting bystander!). It’s one of the things people most assume about firefighters.

personally, I’m a big fan of people not getting hurt… so that means less calls… less calls mean more down time. it’s a win win!

I’ve always wondered if this is one of those myths that get shared when they are looking to cut the budget.

“Get rid of those firefighters, they just lay around and do nothing all day on the tax payer dime”- insert eyeroll here.

If it was acceptable to have more people (especially those “concerned” citizens) do ride time with the station, then I would be all for the kick-in-the-pants revelation these people would receive about the work firefighters actually do.

Because they wear a bunch of hats (again, way too many if you ask me) and they do a damn good job serving our community. 

So yes, it does piss me off when I hear that they do nothing till they get a call. That’s why community outreach is so important.

Not to mention- Firemen don’t learn how to save lives in one day. They need to train! So, NO, they aren’t just laying around the fire station.

With over a million firefighters in the US we are starting to make a real impact on the public’s perception. Maybe just not when it comes time to rearrange the budget.

Speaking of budgets, if you aren’t already a volunteer. You should be! We are short staffed across the US, and can use more great volunteers.


So there you have it. The top myths when it comes to firefighters. Got another good one that I didn’t share? Drop it in the comments below!

P.S. Want to know another harmful myth? Firefighters aren’t immune to mental health needs.  Check out my post on PTSD and suicide resources so your prepared when your fire family needs you the most. Don’t let a mayday go unanswered on your shift.

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