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This essay was originally published in 2014. What follows is a recent podcast discussing the unexpected popularity of Sarah’s essay, as well as her newest military wife confessions. Listen in and read on for the original essay, “Ten Things you Don’t Want to Know about Military Wives.”

Read on and tune in to the accompanying episode of our podcast, Best Friend Banter, recorded two years after publication of this post.

1. We are always at our limit.

One of my close military wife friends said this to me, and I have never forgotten it. Just because we appear to have it together during tough duty stations (see number 7)…laughing things off and trying to make the best of everything, we are always at our limit. We have to look like we have it together. There are times we are raising our kids alone, and we cannot, even if we wanted to, get a hold of our husbands…for weeks. So we have to have an answer for everything, or at least know where to find one, and that amount of stress is deafening.

2. Leave us alone.

Don’t read too much into this one. We are happy to help out a friend, do someone a favor, and generally be a good person, of course. But, especially during deployment and particularly difficult duty stations for our spouses, we cannot do too much outside of continuing to do what we’re already doing. And, (see number one) even though it looks like we’re doing great (and sometimes we are…see number 4), sometimes we’re just barely holding on. Don’t ask us to make elaborate plans, take elaborate trips, or do something that you know is going to create stress. Every spouse has a few things that cause stress for her. Don’t add to the issues by asking her to do what you already know she doesn’t want to. Just leave her alone. If we can attend events, go on vacation with you, etc., we will let you know. It’s not about you. It’s not.

3. We are TIRED.

So tired. We are always getting up in the middle of the night-always taking the dog out-always getting up with the kids-changing every diaper-washing every dish-taking out every trash bag-making every meal tired. It’s exhausting. Single parents…man, you are amazing. Amazing.

4. To deal with 1,2, and 3, we have a system.

This goes back to number 1. In order to feel in control, we make a system. This system is based on preventative maintenance. It keeps us sane, it holds things together and it makes us happy and keeps our kids on the right track. So, we don’t often change our system around. It’s a matter of keeping things status quo, so we can handle anything unpredictable (and there’s always a lot of that). Because when we do deviate from the system, there’s always a huge fallout. And who has to pick up those pieces? Right.

Obviously, we have fun and enjoy our children; in fact, they are often the best distraction from tough duty stations. Children are amazing. Funny, silly, and so resilient. Love the kids. Need the system.

5. We have to handle the kids’ sadness.

Here’s another curveball for mom. Everything’s going great, system is working well, and then, one of your children remembers he hasn’t seen his dad in two weeks. Or a month. Or three. And he cries. Or he acts out. And we have no idea what to say…because we have no idea when he is returning. We try various cute tricks: every day a Hershey’s Kiss from daddy, a calendar, or a countdown necklace. But it’s all just a sad reminder that someone is missing.

6. We need friends.

Not just “Hey, how are you?” friends who ask in passing and never care for the answer, but true, sweet friends who will look us in the eye and say, “Really, how are you?” and care about the answer. We don’t necessarily need anything but someone to acknowledge how hard this life can be and that sometimes, we just need to talk. Yes, we knew what we signed up for when we got married. But it’s still hard.

7. Our husbands miss a lot.

Even when they are “home.” That’s another joke. “Home” can mean not on deployment, but constantly traveling. Funny, isn’t it? Home can mean not traveling but working 14-hour days. So we take kids to school concerts, sports games and put them to bed at night. Just because our husbands aren’t deployed doesn’t mean they are available….which brings me back to number four.

8. The military “controls” more than you think.

Although we have some say over where we live, we don’t have too much. We move every two or three years and we don’t always get our first choice. We plan to have our children around the time our husbands will actually be home AND available. (And sometimes that doesn’t work either!) We plan family vacations and weddings around these schedules as well, and often, they get canceled or postponed. I know more than one military couple that eloped after their elaborate wedding was canceled due to a last minute trip.

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9. Our marriages struggle.

The distance, the stress, the overworked and exhausted husbands, the PTSD, or worse, the missed opportunities for husband/wife time all take a toll. Eight years ago, before I moved across the country to be with my then boyfriend/now husband, a co-worker warned me. She said she was married to a man in the military and they got divorced because ultimately, the stress and distance was too much for her and her husband to handle. There’s not a lot of time to work on or even enjoy the marriage. Fortunately, the military encourages a few incredibly romantic evenings such as balls and homecomings where you can touch that magic…but they are not representative of our actual life.

10. Yes, it’s way harder than we thought…but most of us wouldn’t give it up.

There are some things that are really freaking cool. Ever watched a ship pull in from deployment? Ever watched a change of command ceremony? A military wedding? Never a dry eye.

And our kids? Resilient. Resourceful. Smart. Kind. Helpful. Persistent.

Wonder where they learned that.

Sarah's signature

Update: This essay has been republished on Scary Mommy as well as

P.S. There’s more… You can read my response to all your comments HERE.

485 thoughts on “Ten Things about Military Wives you Probably Don’t Want to Know

  1. I will never look at your Wife & Family the same way! I do Always try to Thank the Men & Women that I see Wearing a Uniform or Hat! Thank you all Men & Woman in Uniform ! Have A Bless Day

    1. Thank you for sharing. We have neices in the military. I have seen their life, but you shed even more light. You are all to be admired and emulated in how you handle life. God bless!

    2. Don’t forget that we have severe gas and diarrhea at all times. Once I saw blood on the toilet paper…a b d it wasn’t period juice. Thanks for the great article, but please add the gastrointestinal issues to your list. P.S. Military husbands are stronger than military wives, but you knew that right?

          1. You are an insensitive, unforgiving type person. Why do you not befriend them. Why cannot you make an effort to do something outside your self important , judgmental self,.

        1. I’ve been married for three years, my spouse is in the USAF. I WORK EVERYDAY, I had my own car, health insurance, my own life before him! I have never ever seen such stepford like women in my life! Weirdos that busy themselves with complete nonsense… Gossip, smoking on their porches every morning.. Smh and still on the porch when I get home! How do u live through a MAN???? I can’t and won’t participate in any of it. SUCH sense of entitlement they are not doctors.. Why don’t u ladies get jobs??????

          1. Most of us do have jobs. Some of us cannot work and keep the home together. The people you are talking about do the same thing outside the military. Whether you are in or out of the military, married to a military member or not, I think we all know the difference between the types of people you describe and other types of people. It sounds like you are a little stressed out.

          2. Can I just say that a lot of us stay at home moms live hours away and have no one to watch they’re kids while they work or reliable enough friends to watch their kids while they work or can find a job paying enough money to afford daycare and have money left over

          3. It seems like you are the only one with a job here. LOL
            I’m obviously sarcastic. I have a job too but I don’t go around judging other people thinking I am the best because they don’t work as much as I do. A lots of military wives want to have a job but cant because is not that easy to find people you can trust to watch your children while you are working. I’m sure you don’t have any kid or you would be complaining about that too.
            All that “blablabla” that you wrote makes me understand that probably your life and job are not that satisfying which is kinda sad.
            Your advice was: “Why don’t you ladies get a job?????? ” – well my answer is: I’m lucky because I already have the job that I like, socially helpful.
            PS I have an advice for you… “Take something to calm down instead of freak out online”

          4. Amen. If nothing else at least get a hobby. I don’t understand how spouses get through without something to occupy them day by day

          5. When the men quit acting like jealous whores over a work permit that might be a possibility.. Every job I hold more than three months one of these guys hmu like I owe them more than taxes outta my check so it’s better to just let them take the credit and not work.

          6. YAAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSS…… My ex is currently in the Army. He left me high and dry 3 years ago pregnant and with his 1 year old just to marry one of these worthless women… Now he’s got 5 kids (including my 2 he’s ignored for the entire time he’s be gone). Its women like you that make women like me look like beast… Men want women that need them and depend on them for everything. You broads disgust me! Get your shit together and grow some balls… Boo how everything is hard. Well suck it up boo and take care of you’re family with the strength God gave you!

          7. As a 22 year, recently retired Navy Wife, yes, my husband was in the US Navy, Los Angeles Class Submarine Service and your comment is just horrible. I did not work for most of the 22 years my husband was in the service because, we had a young son that was born before boot camp and a second son born 10 years later. We Chose for me not to work until the boys were in High School and Middle school, why? Well, not that I am stupid or could not get a job, but because we wanted one constant parent there for the boys. One of us home when they left for school and one for the end of the day, to make it to concerts and their sports, to make it to every event and when they were home sick. With my husband gone anywhere from a few days to 6+ months at a time, it was hard enough on them we did not need to add any more stress to them. Believe it or not, most military wives make this choice. As for sitting on the porch talking all the time, that was the best. Yes, there was some gossip but it was more support, sharing ideas, advice, and just to know that they are going through the same thing that you are. All the emotion, fear, frustration, and loneliness is shared during those talks. We have been retired for about 3 years now and I miss my Navy Wife Friends, I miss the talks and the friendship. So maybe you should quit judging what you don’t know and go join them, it could be the best thing you could do for yourself.

          8. Wondering if you have children? My husband retired from the AF 4 years ago. I spent 9 years doing home daycare because working outside the home, I would have made no money at all after daycare. Two it wasn’t worth robbing my children of their mother. Once they were all in school I worked part time and structured my work hours around school because my husband went tdy and to Afghanistan and Korea for a year. Some don’t have the patience for daycare and shouldn’t be doing it or their husband doesn’t have the patience or they just choose to be a stay at home mom because investment in your children is noble and admirable work. Shame on you for being so judgemental. Military wives need to stick together because at times that’s all you have.

      1. Sorry Joey but I disagree. Most military husbands could not do what their wives do!!!
        Marie———- 26 year Marine Corps Wife!!!

        1. Military Husbands deal with the exact same issues that military wives deal with. I don’t care how long you have been married to a man in the military. How dare you think you are a better spouse than him because you have ovaries. How dare you belittle him because you ride the coat tails of another person’s success. Get a life that doesn’t revolve around your husband, or better yet, stop trolling websites to belittle others. For you to be married 26 years, you act like a teenager.

          1. Fuck you, how long has ur husband served, 2 yrs, 4, 8? Just wait bitch, you’ll change ur tune. How old r u 26, 29? I know I nailed it!


          3. I have to agree, never in the 14 years have it ever belittled my husband! Actually I support him 100%,and I have his back .I know most times we let our soldiers do and handle things. However, I have learned a lot in the 12 years of being an active duty wife you got to seriously know your role and how to muscle your way through. As a spouse is have learned I have a voice, opinion and a right to speak. So when you get told to keep your mouth shut or your husband gets told to control his wife, haha , wrong here can no more control you than your children can. Keep digging ladies and gentlemen of soldiers there is a way and a light at the end of the tunnel! You are amazing don’t let anyone get you down.

        2. Marie,
          First, let me tell you something about myself. I’m a female who happens to be married to a man in the military. Now that you know I have a vagina…Where do you get off saying that to a fellow military spouse who is doing THE EXACT SAME THING AS YOU everyday to support his serving spouse? Why don’t you hop off of your husband’s coat tails and realize you aren’t superwoman. Why do you think stay at home moms work harder than stay at home dads? I don’t care how long you have been married or how long you have been a mother. You need to stop bashing men and telling them they aren’t working as hard as you. People like you actually make it even harder for men to be stay at home dads.

          1. just out of curiosity why do yall believe military wives are all stay at home moms? My husband has been in 7 years & I’ve had a full time job all but 1 year. I pride myself in being able to work at an actual office & do all the things a wife/mom does. We have 2 kids & my husbands schedule sucks. I take care of the kids for the most part, but only because he can’t. In addition to a full time job I’m finishing my degree. I just really hate that people assume we’re all stay at home moms. I’m not riding anyone’s coat tails. I support my husband, our kids, & myself.

          2. Seriously?!? To paraphrase Ben Franklin, ‘we must all hang together or we will most certainly hang separately’.

            Why tear one another down? Why insult SAHM’s? Who do you think volunteers at the schools during the school day? Who do you think volunteers at the Spouse’s Club thrift shops that fund scholarships for spouse’s and military children, as well as supporting the Balls and any other organization on Base? Who do you think watches the kids of the spouse who suddenly has to be MEDEVACed back to the States while the military member is deployed FROM an overseas duty station? Who do you think sub at DoDDS schools not because they want/need the money but because the school is seriously hurting for subs, or filling in for a school sec’y that is on emergency leave? Being a SAHM does NOT mean sitting on the couch eating bon bons and watching soaps.

            When my kids were toddlers it meant going to Peanut Festivals and Air Shows, zoos and museums, an arboretum (explained as a tree museum), Monticello, Mount Vernon, aquariums, street festivals, turning trips to get the oil changed into explorations of different types of stores or identifying different types of vehicles. This led to a four year old that could tell you how to get from the Springfield Metro station to Shady Grove, including not only what stations to transfer at, but also which colour lines to take as well as draw a map from Fredericksburg, VA to his Grandmother’s in Montgomery County MD… not that this was the aim – it was just answering his questions.

          3. Hey am date a military man it been a year and I have learned a lot about his life in the military the man ask me 2 merry him I said yes but at same time in my eyes this man is not right want money all the time I can’t do it no more I got 3 kids not his I got house old 2 look after of I can’t see my self merry this man but at the same time stress depress it all about this man and money he need 2 be pray on and am not merry 2 the man but u want me 2 take from my kids mouth pamper food bills keep money in my pocket I have no help from no 1 it hurt 2 see my self this way in life over a man URL

        3. I know for a fact that I could not fill the shoes of my very supportive wife while I am gone. While I work 8 time zones away, she has raised two girls. Making sure my oldest, a 6 year old, doesn’t miss a single practice and single handedly enabled her to participate in the junior Olympics this summer. Yes my job is difficult but in a different way. She would not be able to do my job just the same I would not be able to do hers. Please do not take things out of context on here. I am a military man who is gone more than 6 months out of every year. People’s experiences reflect their own struggles…. If you have not experienced them leave it alone.

          1. LC
            Gee, thanks for clearing it up for me. Now I fully understand that all these years of being a SAHM I have simply been riding my husband’s coat tails.

          2. I’ve been on both sides: my husband was AD for the first 17 years of our marriage, while for the first 19 I was a Reservist. During Desert Storm I was mobilized (we had no children) and got to see what it was like to be at sea; actually many of the Reservists aboard USNS Comfort were also dependent wives and we quite enjoyed the adventure (knowing, of course, that eventually we would be going home to our normal lives). Eight years later, when my husband went on his six month cruise and I was home with our toddler, there were times I was a bit jealous. I wouldn’t give up the time with our son for anything, but there were times when we got letters describing the food on shore patrol in Greece or the tours in Israel, or when after an hour (dial-up), the picture of Petra finally opened on the computer….

            Both jobs are hard, but knowing that you (or I) are responsible 100% because the deployed member isn’t always available for phone calls or e-mail… it takes it toll. The number one rule of deployments is that whatever can go wrong will… the car, the plumbing, the roof… a hurricane.

          3. Thank you. That is exactly what my husband said to me, when I was out of commission for 3 months (hospital and bed rest) He not only had to do my job, but his and finally understood what I actually did all day, He then told me he could never do his job without me at home doing what I do. He knows that together we are team. 22 years military and I have been with him 21.

        4. Marie-it is true that my husband wouldn’t be able to do what I (a stay at home mom) do. It’s hard work. But I wouldn’t be able to to what he does ether. Having to leave his family when duty calls is not easy. It’s not like he has a choice. Missing special occasions sucks.

          Also it’s not very nice to talk bad about anyone nor is it nice to compare people. Every military family is different. And it sure doesn’t matter how long you’ve been married to a service member ether.

        5. I disagree. I believe it’s harder for a military husband. The jobs offered on post are more catered to females making it harder for a man to get a job. Then he is looked at like a piece of trash cause he doesnt have a job. The FRG is catered to females. Yes males are welcome but he is looked at and treated strangely. The soldiers of these wife’s are always looking at him as if he is after their wives, where in all truth he is just trying to fit in. So it is harder for a male. While his wife is out fighting the bad guy he is at home alone with no one at all to talk to or hang out with or to help him through these times. So don’t say woman have it harder. I am a woman I have been on the spouse of a soldier and now I am the soldier while my husband struggles to keep our home together. He definitely has it a lot harder than I did.

      2. if your gonna be a bishnig about a little blood in your toilet use your military code of honor to continue pissin in the street.. maybe then Germany wouldn’t have to stamp a dna permit for you uglies to procreate. Oh and could you ladies quit pointing at el chapo when you reach your limit on cocain debts and turning it over on women you couldn’t bag on your best day. Sorry I would spell check but my ignorance was issued here so it just makes my post that much more authentic.

    3. This article misses the fact that most military wives act like their husbands rank is actually theirs and they love to complain about how hard their life is when really they’re just bored.

  2. Thank you so much for writing this! it put into words what Ive been feeling for so long! Only 4 years and 3 deployments in and I have felt every single point you made! Home run on this one!

      1. We live in the most WONDERFUL Country in the History of the World because of your Bravery .
        A mere “THANK YOU” is not nearly enough!!!
        May God Bless you and STRENGTHEN all of you for your many SACRIFICES!!!
        Let those around you know your needs so WE can help You!!!
        We’re all in this TOGETHER!!!???

    1. You guys should just lick each others kunts and get it over with. Isnt that right? You jus want someone to ‘feel’ for you dependopotomus bottoms

      1. Yeah I’m a real dependapotamus after I supported my little E2 at the time boyfriend, now E7 husband when he needed a car or help with his bills. You’re pathetic to think every military wife is a sponge. Bitter aren’t you?

      2. That is completely uncalled for and rude. I take extreme exception to that. I am not dependent on my husband for anything. I hold three degrees, work a full-time job, and take care of our children and home. He does his party to help when he is here but I am not a dependapotamus and I don’t have any friends like that. You don’t know any of us.

      3. I hope ur friend the devil spits in ur face an takes you home with him you have no idea wat your talking about so until you do shut up an go live overseas with ur friends the enemy pervert

        1. grow up anonymous! how old are you? You act like your a fucking 5 year old. Get a life you loser

      4. Don’t get caught up in this person’s comments. People who leave comments like this are called “trolls.” A “troll” is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory,[1] extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a newsgroup, forum, chat room, or blog) with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response[2] or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion. People think it’s fun to be hurtful on the internet and it’s easy for them because they hide behind a computer screen. Best to just skip over their comments–otherwise, you feed into their miserable life.

      5. Thank u that’s all it boil down 2 feeling sorry 4 some sorry asses let there wife do the feeling sorry no 1 else have the time 4 stupid as men hey I say what I feel cause I got boy friend that be the same way

  3. 2 marriages 3 duty stations. My ex husband was airforce i was army and my new husband is airforce. some people have a misjudgment about the military. it isnt easy people think oh its a steady paycheck you dont have to worry about bills or any of that. you have a free ride. its not like that at all. most of us military families still live paycheck to paycheck and when there are budget cuts where do they come from. its not easy but we wouldnt have it any other way

    1. Then get a job, Joyce. Your husband isn’t the only one who has to work. For god’s sake, did you forget that YOU are a civilian?? Get a job and help pay for others who are serving the country including your husband. Pay some taxes on your own paycheck while you earn a little extra so you don’t have to worry about budget cuts.

      No one owes YOU anything for simply being his wife.

      1. Nadia,

        Aren’t you the insightful one. She should get a job. That way the day care can raise her children, maybe they can instill values and show them kids what’s really important, money. Oh and hey! They can spend more time away from their main and often times *only available supportive family member. Why didn’t SHE think of that?? I mean, it is her duty to pay taxes “like the rest of them”, It isn’t THAT important to create stability for children who move every two years, or live thousands of miles away from all of their extended family. Focusing on raising secure, valuable citizens for this nation is nonsense.

        Take a chill pill lady.

        1. *Standing ovation Francheska*
          I had my dream job once. For about 2 months. Then we had to rush home for emergency leave, and 2 weeks after we returned from *that* overseas trip, my husband was sent away for 4 months for training because they decided he had to be the “body” they needed to fill a slot. 3 weeks after he returned from training, he deployed for another almost 4 months. The emergency leave was because my dad had to be revived twice after dying twice. I had to quit what I loved doing because daycare is not going to raise my children. I also had to deal with almost losing my dad, alone, and I wasn’t able to help my mom out. Military life doesn’t stop just because there is a family emergency.
          My family *IS* my job. So tired of the ridiculous mindset that belittles those of us who put our children and husband before our own ambitions and agendas! Nadia’s priorities are not everyone’s, and her opinions of those of us who don’t agree are meaningless drivel! I avoid people with her outlook like the plague. They are toxic!

          1. So because I have an education and a full time career I don’t put my child and husband first? I beg to differ. My income allows us to take family vacations, give a bit extra at church, save for our son’s education, and not live “paycheck to paycheck.” I am proud that my husband is a soldier, but his career is his and my career is mine. So many spouses believe that if they work outside the home that someone else is raising their child/children. This belief is not true. The military itself perpetuates the same idea by scheduling activities for service members and their families during “work hours” just because the majority of spouses do not have their own “career”. DOD schools schedule parent teacher conferences during “work hours” as well. I don’t know about the rest of you, but my husband doesn’t have the type of MOS that allows for him to ask for an hour or two off work. And for those spouses who have careers, asking for time off because the military caters to and perpetuates the idea of the “stay at home spouse” isn’t feasible. This idea causes problems for those spouses who do have careers because those spouses feel or are either made to feel guilty that they can’t go on the school study trip, or can’t attend the PTA meeting that occurs during “work hours,” or aren’t available to volunteer. We need to stop judging each other as spouses and start supporting each no matter what choices we make. We all stand beside our military spouse in support of them and freedom.

      2. Wow your a real peach Nadia. Are you a mole….ummm….beaver….ummmm….TROLL…That’s right forgot for a moment. Joyce wasn’t asking or saying anyone OWED her anything. I think you might be on the wrong site. Please consider changing for my sake.

      3. It is one thing to say Get a job and another one to find one, especially in a small country town attached to a Defence Base and in the current global finance crisis! After 36 years of marriage to a Navy man I wouldn’t swap it anything. The people , the places and experiences are just magical but the aloneness does get to you but believe it or not it is worse after the kids leave the nest and your husbands are not home. Now I have a retired one that I can’t get rid of!

          1. Right out of my mouth too!im also a 20yr military wife now retired and I’m also a military brat I grew up moving every couple years or so…. And if you aren’t a military wife you have NO FRIGGIN CLUE what we go through weither we are stay at home moms or if we work also outside of the home. No money is not in abundance, we are not rich. Like so many ppl want to believe… And military ppl pay into unemployment….. Why? It’s not like when ppl get out they can collect unemployment!! NOPE ex military can not collect unemployment!!! But by god they have to pay in to it!! Could never figure that one out!
            Those of you that are not military nor have ever been military ……..
            Just be thankful that we do and sit back and enjoy the life you have because of MILITARY FAMILIES!!!

      4. Nadia, I promise I won’t reply your comment in bitter bitch way. But I would love to ask you to put yourself into our (Millitary wives) shoes, and below is how the shoes look like :
        – we MUST constantly move follow the husband station to station to support his career, so even though we try to find a job, it’s always a temporary one such as babysit, daycare, serving… And because most boss don’t want staffs who he can’t know how stable we can stay at that job so we hardly can grow our own career.
        – Above is to talk about mil wives who still not have kids (like me). For those who have kids, they have a job, a both father and mother parenting job. They have to make sure their kids don’t feel unloved because their father have to be on ready position all the time, being deployed, be in training field.etc,
        – Constant stress because of they can never make a plan for themself because of they have to stand by to see what the Millitary plans are. Constant stress to keep their family strong, support their husband 100%… Constant stress because they don’t know what would happen or go wrong to their soldier.
        Please Nadia, put yourself in that shoes then read your own comment to see how awful that comment is.

        1. Who said she didn’t have a job? I was a military spouse for 10years, worked full time and did all of this. It’s hard. It often goes unnoticed. Good for her for speaking up.

          1. Wel I haven’t exactly been a military wife as long as most of you. But I will say that I think it’s pretty even the men struggle just as much as the wives but in different ways. We it may seem like we have more duties than our husbands and maybe some of us do. Some wives may have a job and some may not. See the thing some wives may not know or do and just don’t care is I believe they have a harder job. They carry more stress. Yes it sucks when they leave for field ops or training or deployment we do miss them and have to explain to our children why daddy isn’t coming home every day for 7 plus months. That’s hard but think about it we aren’t the ones that are going out of the country to some foreign country country we know nothing about. We miss ONE person our husband misses more than one if you have children. Our husbands sacrifice their freedom and they’re lives. They cannot do anything they want to do. They have to deal with crap no one else does they can’t just leave anywhere they want whenever they want they need permission or have to let someone know. They get yelled at for something someone else did. Sure their job may end at the end of the day they may get a break from work unlike the wives to with the kids. That’s a teen try four hour job and we never get breaks. But I don’t complain about it. Sure I may want sometime alone because I never get it. But if I don’t oh well no need to complain because I am the mom I am the wife I have my responsibilities also I cook clean go to school take my child to school pick him up go to after school programs. But I am a mom I believe that is the mothers main job. I don’t work so I am a dependent and yes I do depend on my husband for the money because he works and I don’t but I don’t complain that I want or need more. If I did than maybe I should go out and get a job. But I love being home with my children I love being home for my husband. I guess all in all I think my husband works harder than I do. I never wake him up at night for the children because he works the nest morning and has to get up at five I can take a nap if I get a chance. He can’t. I love my husband and I love my job. I never complain about it because I love it. I love spoiling him and my kids. Mostly him because he works and I don’t I wouldn’t trade what I do for anything or anything easier. God wouldn’t of give my this opportunity if I wasn’t qualified for the job.

        2. I think you are assuming that all military wives are just that. I am nurse as well as a wife and mother. I have a found a job every time we moved. I worked my schedule around my husband’s deployments, children’s school/daycare and after school sports and still found time to finish my BSN online. I definitely had an organizational system in place that accounted for late nightsat the ball field and a sitter lined up when I had to work late. I had friends that I ccar pooled with and on ocassion covered early morning shifts with breakfast and evening meals. Being employed and a part time single parent us difficult and when you look back. …you can’t believe you did it all. In that is the satisfaction and know all that you CAN do it again and you will!

          1. I was a military wife in the late 70’s and early 80’s and also was a nursing student, went from LPN to ADN RN with a 3 and 5 year old. All I knew was that I was so grateful when my husband was able to be with us. He was a medic so most of his war stories were not what anyone would want to hear. I feel very accomplished as my children ended up acceptable adults and their dad died just 53 days after he retired. I thank God every day for the experience of being an Army wife as it taught me how to cope and manage.

      5. Nadia, please note that Joyce says she was active duty Army. Even if that is not true, she is the spouse of a military member. She is deserving of our thanks and respect.
        It is very difficult to find a job when we move so often, even with transferable skills. When we have children, we (the non-military spouse) are often the only constant in our children’s lives. Depending on our kids’ age and maturity level, it is sometimes better for the kids that we are stay-at-home moms/dads, because that is sometimes the only stability and sense of security our kids have.
        Frankly, as a military spouse, I resent your statement that, ‘No one owes YOU anything for simply being his wife.’ Its the ‘simply’ thing that galls me. I am not ‘simply’ a military member’s spouse, I am the person raising his children and making sure he has a home to come back to. I am the person who, more often than not, without him, executes a move from one coast to the other about every two years. I manage the move; monitor the packers (who often steal things), the movers (who usually break something), find a new home, clean the old home, research schools and crime statistics, rent the U-Haul and drive our two kids, two dogs and cat 1,500 miles or more each time. I fill out the paperwork to file a claim for the stuff that gets stolen, lost or broken. I wait for reimbursement, then try to find a replacement with the 50% or less I am reimbursed. Try finding a little girl’s Barbie-themed, twin canopy bed for $30. Not happening. Then try explaining why your 4 year old daughter can’t have her bed back and we can’t get a new one. Then deal with the tears.
        I am the person who manages the budget, cleans the house, cares for the kids, and cries many long lonely hours when my best friend is unreachable for weeks at a time. I don’t cry because I am weak. I cry because I miss my best friend, my partner in life, the person with whom I have children. I cry because my children cry when they miss their Daddy. And by the way, we have not been fortunate enough to get a duty station anywhere close to our families, so when I get to a new duty station, I have no one. I don’t know anyone. The kids don’t know anyone. If we can afford it, we pay out-of-pocket to travel to visit our families at the Holidays. If we can’t, we hope our family can come to us. Usually, though, we are just us – me and the kids – for holidays and birthdays and spelling bees and school plays and swim meets.
        Nobody owes me anything except respect. If I didn’t do my job as a military spouse, my spouse could not do his job to protect your right to slam me.

        1. Kate, Thank you for your service, stand proud…you are the lady standing right beside the wonderful service member..I spent 22 years doing the same things, you just spoke of and I hold my head high, We praise the Good Lord for our country, and would do the job all over again. As a matter of fact our 4 children have followed in our foot steps. So I guess we have done it all over again. Thank you Kate!!! Thank your mate too.

          1. Dear Mrs. Master Chief,
            Thank you for your support, your service, the service of your Sailor, and that of your children! Its a small Navy world :).
            God Bless, and Happy Holidays!

        2. Kate, sadly there are some who can not grasp the full scope of being a military spouse. I am a Air Force spouse (15+ years) and know exactly how you feel. Not many can handle this life and bless you for doing your job of supporting your husband and being the stability for you kids!

        3. KATE- Eloquently said. I hope that you read this note of mine because you deserve to know that your kids are benefiting from your dedication. I’m a navy wife and have a child whose special needs dictate my day to day successes or fails, and as much as it might seem unfair, this IS my job, NADIA. At least until my husband retires or I find the perfect flexible opportunity that will accommodate my position as navy spouse AND utilize my Harvard University MA. So there, Nadia, suck it.

          1. Julie, even if you don’t have/find a ‘paying’ job, with your education, you can serve so many as a volunteer mentor in many fields! For Navy groups, check out
            I was a Compass Mentor and Ombudsman. I also worked with the Chaplain’s Office with Crisis Intervention and Response. All of these were very rewarding, non-paying ‘jobs’ that allowed me to use my education and training to help others. And you can always work your schedule around the needs of your very special child:).

        4. Thank you for your eloquent response to an ignorant statement. The problem is that unless someone is in our shoes they will never understand. I had a career before my husband and kids. I will rebuild what I can when we move for our final time this year. After 30 years active duty my husband has chosen to retire.
          Thank you for not responding to Nadia in the same base language and behavior she exudes. People like that will never understand.

        5. Kate you are awesome and spot on! We do all of that and even more! Some of us have careers outside of the home but a lot of us make our family and this lifestyle our career. People have no idea how hard it is to keep it together and I’m so tired of hearing “well, you knew what you were getting into when he joined”. No one KNOWS what this is like until they’re in the thick of it. We do not ask for handouts but merely want our feelings validated and respected.
          Thank you for spelling it out to the poor souls who lack the respect and compassion to walk a mile in our shoes.

          1. Blanca, you are correct. I thought I knew what I was getting into – a 2 year tour in Pensacola, then retirement and back to MD and our families. But my husband kept getting promoted. Home port change, 9-11, 10 moves in 12 years … My ‘enlistment’ as a Navy spouse went from 2 years to 12, until he finally retired. It was not what I ‘signed up for’, nor what I expected or hoped for. It is what I got when I ‘signed up’ at the altar and vowed for better or worse, in sickness and in health; to love, honor and cherish him for the rest of my life.

        6. No one owes you anything, including respect. I don’t respect you for being married and making travel arrangements every few years. I do it every time without bitching about it. Clearly you haven’t learned a system* on how to handle all this. Being a mother isn’t a valuable skill. Sorry to bust that bubble, but you aren’t some amazing woman because you take care of children alone at times. There is a reason, being a mom, isn’t in the Olympics. It’s not hard or difficult. You are the one who makes it difficult. Having a puppy is just as hard, possibly harder, than raising a child. Yes, I just went there. Cue the coat riders to belittle me because I work for a living and can’t even tell you how much money my husband makes! It’s called responsibility and being driven. I won’t apologize for working and being a contributing member of my household. Women think they are a special breed after they have children, but anyone can lay on their back and get pregnant. You all start to think you should make millions because you clean shit off another human several times a day. Just remember this, you made the decision to have children. No one forced you. Stop complaining about them!
          *read article and see system step…

          1. You, my dear, are an idiot. You have no idea to what you speak of. Be that as it may, I wish you future happiness (you seem very bitter) and a chance to love a child someday.

          2. I am so sorry for you, Not Typical. I will pray that you find peace and are able to purge yourself of whatever tortures you so.
            If you truly believe that “having a puppy is just as hard, if not harder than raising a child”, I hope that you will never have a puppy or a child. Yes, most women can “lay on their back and get pregnant,” but not all women have what it takes to RAISE a child. You have made it quite obvious that you don’t.

          3. I wasn’t offended by this Nadia chicks comment. But you, you are the filth and disgust that this country needs to rid itself of. If you think being a mother is easy, you are sadly mistaken. I have not given birth but I have raised my niece since she was born. It is not a cake walk. It is hard work. I am disabled and waking up multiple times a night to feed another human, WIPE HER ASS, hold her, rock her back to sleep and wake up every 15 minutes to make sure she is breathing is exhausting and the most amazing thing in this world. She did not come out of my vagina but she is the most amazing thing to happen to me. Besides my PUPPY and cat and sailor.

            Some people are not cut out to be mothers. You are not. You are not deserving of unconditional love from a child or a puppy. You are the type of person who would probably abuse a poor child or animal. How dare you say those things. I feel extremely sorry for you. You must have had a horrible young life. You should probably seek some serious psychotherapy and the best psychiatrist in your area. If you tried doing what some wives, mothers, etc do (not even adding in the military aspect) I’m sure you would crack. You sweetheart are a cold, heartless bitch. Please, for the sake of this country, NEVER reproduce. Actually just have a hysterectomy now so you don’t even have the ability to ruin a child’s life.

          4. Anyone can lie on their backs and get pregnant? Way to spit in the face of every woman struggling with infertility.

        7. Please know that you are appreciated. .. at least by your kids, even if they don’t say or show it sometimes. I grew up as a Navy “brat”. Through many, many moves , deployments, and the times my dad was “on assignment” and not around, my mom held things together.
          She also worked full time as as teacher at all our duty stations in the states and abroad.
          I admire both my parents. That being said, I am not sure that I would have been able to do what my mom did…. it is an incredibly challenging thing to raise your children in constantly changing and sometimes dangerous conditions all over the world and hold it together. All of you that have done so and continue to do so have my respect and admiration. Thank you for all your strengths, weaknesses, resourcefulness, sanity, insanity, compassion, determination. .. ( I could go on)
          You are amazing. And loved

        8. Very well said, Kate! This is much like my own story as an Air Force wife of 12 years and mother to 3 children. Thank you!

      6. OMG,
        DO you know how hard it is to get a job every year or two years, never climbing the ladder, never getting a jog because you mention your a defence family, or never getting a job because you are a unknown.

        1. M,

          I haven’t lived in the same place for longer than a year in a while. I’ve had to switch jobs quite a bit, but it’s not as difficult as you are telling me that it is. Switching jobs, to me, doesn’t not mean starting over. Every move, every new job, I take with me my experience and skills, and I am continuing to make more each knotch up the ladder. I am not saying this to belittle you, M, because I am aware that some times people won’t tell you certain things, but no matter what, you are in charge of negotiating your pay and status. Don’t talk about your family if you don’t have to; only talk about whats necessary to the employer. Sometimes maybe a turn on your perspective can help. Next time, look at it this way and decide for yourself if it works: When you start a job, you are going in to help with a task. Can you do the task? The answer is probably 85% yes. Every skill out there is learnable one. :) It doesn’t matter if you can lay your life down and serve that employer for the rest of your life or not. They won’t expect you to, regardless of what they tell you. View them as YOUR client.

      7. Oh Nadia… Do you have ANY idea what its like to start at the bottom of the barrel, work nights, weekends and all crappy shifts… (wait, don’t say yes yet!) working so hard so that about 23 months later you FINALLY get full time and guess what happens a year after that… No, you don’t Know???? But I thought you knew everything…. Well, I’ll tell you….. YOU ARE POSTED and get to do it all again…. Starting at the bottom, part time, crappy shifts, struggling to find last minute babysitters for those crappy night and weekend shifts, because your husband is deployed all the time, mostly with less than 24 hours notice…. But I’m guessing you are either NOT a military wife, or you have the luxury of being married to the few that never go anywhere and never get posted AND are always home so you can have the luxury of a job, no wonder you have time to bitch and judge other women…… Want a hero biscuit while you are at it?

        1. Get a better education and try harder. You are lazy if you can’t get a job. I am a military husband and raise 3 kids and a dog yet I still work. Must be a man thing. We have a stronger will.

          1. Maybe it’s because you could afford college. Maybe you established your family after joining the military. Everyone’s story is different and for you to call people lazy, you can get off your high horse. Oh and good for you.

          2. Joey Boots,
            You should be careful what you say. I have been married 14 years and moved 9 times. I have two children and a dog. I have both a BA and Master degrees. I have lived in places that I was over qualified for any jobs available, my husband was an officer (what that has to do with getting a job, I don’t know), or that as a non-citizen of whatever country we were living in could not get a job. Many of us “lazy” spouses run circles around paid working people in our volunteering for whatever we can do to help others. And I am sure you do not have a stronger will than I do. From what I have seen, women may be “softer” than men, but we are stronger than we are ever given credit for. Oh, having a degree does not mean that you are better than someone who does not have one, it just means we had a different opportunity than others.

          3. I agree Joey, but I don’t feel it’s an inherently man thing. I believe its a thing we have instilled in our men vs. women. Men don’t have stronger will, they are just convinced that they are stronger willed, which in itself creates said will.

            Anyway, Education doesn’t always mean college, as someone here complained. Education can come from books, interests, and sheer determination to be some one with skills and interests of their own. It’s not impossible to go from the bottom to making $83k a year in two years if you want it badly enough. Trust me when I say I know it’s not impossible, because I’ve done it. And no, I haven’t been in the same place for years. I move once every year, give or take like everyone else.

          4. 27 yrs of marriage, all of them in the Military, 3 children raised, 2 wars, 4 deployments and uncountable exercises away from home.
            DON’T you dare say that men have stronger wills than military wives. My wife was ex military and she has withstood much more stress during my deployment time away than I ever did taking a sight picture on an enemy combatant..
            Perhaps you and Nadia should get pair sound like your egos would be a great match.

          5. I am a spouse, mother, student, and Ministers, wife. I was myself enlisted for four years, I have two teenage daughters with special needs how dare you call anyone one lazy because they do not have a traditional job. I’m assuming we all do what we have to, to get the job done any chauvinistic opinions are not required or respected.

          6. Okay Joey Boots, back off. A man thing how the h 88l are you to say it is a man thing. for over 200 hundreds years is had been women who have kept the home fires burning, working jobs, raising children, preparing for the deployments of their husbands, fathers, brothers. I have been a military daughter and military wife and now a military mother with combined years of “service on the home front ” over 65 years. I raised two boys while my husband was gone for 13 months, then gone every three months, while working a full time job and taking care of the bills, the house, mowing the lawn, fixed leaking toilets, etc. My suggestion to you is take a hike. When my father was stationed overseas and my mother and I were with him, civilians were given all the jobs, even baggers in the commissary, military dependents were not employed by any military base. things have changed since the 60’s but the stresses haven’t. so when you have 65 years of experience with the military life and the stresses that come with it. Give me a call, until back off. That is a WOMAN THING.

          7. If your will so strong then why arent you the one deploying. I run my own photography business, watch a child that isnt mine almost 80 hrs a week, i foster military family pets when they are pcsing, deploying or tdying. Not to mention keeping my house not just spotless but you can white glove my house and not find any thing out of place. Not to mention keeping up with my own child and his sports and school assembles and everything else that comes with being a mom. Dont feel too inferior to us. And we do this all and keep ourselves put together.

          8. It’s a Man Thing ? I have refrained from commentin on some of these ignorant post. But yours Ha!! My husband served 26 years in our Navy. Guess how many kids– 4 , 2 Greman Shephards… oh I guess I will list my cats also. ( 4 rescues) oh I also ran a tight ship ….and damn I must have that Man thing… I am a E.R. Nurse… work mostly nights .. all most always 14 hour shifts. Now my kids are grown and in the military. I have retired and so has my husband . Now he works 9 hour days as a fed. Doing the same job.. and me. I started my own business.. and we still move and he goes on debts!! You sir are an ass!!!

      8. Did it ever occur to you that moving every 2-3 years means lots of holes in a military spouse’s resume? Setting aside the single parenting that has to happen during deployments, that makes getting hired at all very hard, and due to the possibility of another move the job is unlikely to be one that pays enough to cover daycare because those kinds of jobs need people who will be around longer than 2-3 years. And p.s.: it’s not just military wives that go through this.

        1. My father and family didn’t make the sacrifices they did for people like you to come along and screw it up

      9. lots of military spouses work, but if you read the article you would see, when you’re the primary parent left to deal with everything, working is not an easy option, and you can forget about building a career.

      10. Yes Nadia you need to do some research on things not to say to a military spouse…did your mother not teach you that if you can not say anything nice then do not say anything at all! I’m a military spouse that is disabled due to a horrible back injury and am 43 years old and 5.5 years New to army life of a husband that wants to do 40 years ..during our marriage he has been deployed to Afghanistan for 13 months all 3 times! With a total of 7 deployments n all! This was my first move from my home state of husband has no children and I have one son and recently became a grandparent to a beautiful step granddaughter which in my heart she is not a step granddaughter she is my sweet Layla that I love & now I have a 2 year old grandson also and this nana loves her husband has 22 years in and I married him but no I had no idea what being a military spouse was like! Now we are told we are headed to Germany for 3 years..he has been 3 times already..I’m leaving everything and everyone behind..can only take one’s paid for..the other isn’t and Lein holder says he has to sell it or hope to store it and come back to 3 years of dry rotted tires among other drama…so life is hard for all in the military and you NADIA should learn to tell a CIVILIAN..cuz we are but we carry more weight on our shoulders in one day than you could carry in a lifetime! Maybe try telling a military spouse”thank you for what you do on the homefront so that your husband can do his job to protect us here in the great land of America”..just saying..don’t provoke the military spouse:)

        1. Pamela, you will LOVE Germany! We just moved back after 5 years there and I’m praying that we can go back.

      11. You all need to re-evaluate yourselves before you defend or criticize. I spent ten years in active army as a tanker and military police. I have seen the best and the worst the Army and Joint base housing has to offer (So yes that means you too Marines and Air force). Some of the worst types of people are you wives clinging to your spouses coat tails. There is a reason you all have a label attached to you and your support for each other is fake. You are worse than a supermarket tabloid and gossip about each other, amongst each other. Military Spouse is a title, not a career and you tend to forget that when the situation arises. If you are offended by this, you are exactly the person I’m talking about.

        1. You are stupid as hell. There is nothing more to say and no I am not one of those people you think you are talking about.

          1. No shit Sherlock. I’m just not one to give out to much information. But I have been there. My family has been there for many generations. You are not the first and won’t be the last. Should you choose to carry on the tradition.

        2. How can you categorize every military wife into one single category. Just because our spouse is In the military doesn’t mean we choose not work or “ride their coat tails”. Have you ever been disabled? I am. I’ve been disabled since I was 19 with rare brain disorders, back injuries, you name it I probably have it, I hate when people say I choose to live off of my so because he is in the military. In our case, the military has nothing to do with it. If you are really prior military, you know the pay isn’t the greatest. Do you have kids? Do you know how expensive day care is? Do you know how expensive medical bills are for someone disabled? It’s only June and I’ve racked up over half a mil in medical bills THIS YEAR as my so and I have had to put off getting married so I could have decent medical coverage through my parents. My fellow mil wives are my true friends. There is one I wouldn’t have made it through our deployments or our move without her. So no, not everyone’s support for a fellow wife is fake. There are a lot of fake people in this small world, but there are some good ones out there. Don’t judge others. I’ve been judged my whole life because of my illnesses. It isn’t fair or right. And now I’m being judged for being with someone in the military? How fucking rude. I think some people, even those like you who have served, forget what young men and women give up at a young age to protect our country. you should be ashamed of yourself.

      12. Ummmm….I’m pretty sure she said she served in the Army. What branch did YOU serve in. She never said anyone owed her anything. You need Jesus.

      13. Nadia, you are an idiot, I have worked the entire time with my husband. I am not a civilian I and a NAVY WIFE. I am,proud of that and of my husband, we lived pay check to paycheck, did not have many bills, the fact is unless you are further up in the ranks you live below the poverty line even in the military with the spouse working. Get your facts straight. Living with a military spouse has special circumstances, there are different problems, like not hearing from your husband for 4 months. Nothing not even letters, you see when we were active duty, there was no email. Only snail mail. Hearing about a missile hitting a ship and not knowing if your husband was on it, this is not every day life. Do not judge until you walk in our shoes.

      14. how offensive can a person be. My wife had a fulltime job maintaining my home when I was deployed or just gone all the time. The military is extremely underpaid considering what we do. If my wife had held a job her money would have gone to childcare. Newsflash that stuff is EXPENSIVE. So what is the point if you are not actually making money. Also how is a person supposed to develop into a hireable person if they are forced to moved every three or so years. Also no telling if there is actually work they are qualified to do in some locations. For example we lived in Alaska for four years, a lanscaper would have a pretty hard time working up there.

        1. The military is not underpaid. Active duty gets paid based off cost of living per region.

          You just described to me that you need a house sitter/maid to keep your house while you were deployed. Why isn’t your wife uncomfortable with that statement? If you have a small child, then none of my comments have even been about your wife. You are offended for no reason at all.

          I move all the time and yet I am still the bread winner of my family. Oh gosh, how can people do it? Well? You get yourself a trade skill or a marketable skill. Neither will hurt you, ESPECIALLY when employers know that you are part of a military family. Believe it or not, companies are very supportive of military families. I’ve never been turned down a job, upon mentioning why I move so much. Nowadays, people move jobs that quickly anyway. (welcome to the future?)

          I suppose if you chose to landscape, you should also consider a second skill if you plan to live as a world traveller with your spouse. It would be totally ignorant to jump in without some kind of thought towards what one might do to pitch in. Is there anything she likes to do besides the single skill she has (landscaping?) ? There is likely a market for that interest. It’s not nearly as difficult to work as you are making it seem. If it is, then I can’t help but to assume that person who doesn’t work simply isn’t actually interested in working.

          I do wonder to myself… I can only expect that your wife is reasonable, but if she is the same type as the livid, childish women on this page, I have to wonder why you are okay with her feeling so entitled to what is yours. In a marriage everyone shares, but how much is fair to contribute? Marriage does not mean total submission; you are both still humans that ought to respect one another & supply the same support or subsidization. Otherwise your family will become a hierarchy.

          1. Nadia
            Please check your facts. Not all active duty military are paid cost of living (COLA) per region. Especially stateside. When I lived in Seattle I received a whopping 1% COLA on my E7 with 20 years that was $42.00. That was gas for 2 weeks if I only went to work and the grocery(with in a 5 mile radius). Now in Colorado, no COLA.
            When I lived in Hawaii it fluctuated every 15 days, averaged about $500 per month. Yet gas was regularly .75¢ to a $1 more a gallon, milk was $2-3 dollars more and this was on base. And with was 11 miles away.
            Yes I chose a military career, I accepted that when I asked for Hawaii prices would be outrageous. But not all active duty receive COLA.

          2. I just married my best friend who is military and I can say that we only save $100 a month between both of us. I’ve applied to over 50 jobs in the area and only hear back from one and still am searching! You are sometimes moved into highly populated areas with a huge unemployment rating. I can’t get a customer service job because they know I have a hard schedule with having to get my husband to and from base because we only can afford one vehicle and the constant moving. I’ve moved three times this year. I’ve been volunteering since age 6 with family to help waitress. I’ve held a 40+ hour weeks since age 17 and have not once mooched off my husband. Yet now I am undesirable to the most common and starter waged job. Military doesn’t cover much when you need to move all the time or use $80 in gas every two weeks. Or need to go see family 1-2 times a year and you are a thousand miles away. You can’t base your experience to judge another’s is all I’m trying to get at. My situation is hard, it’s not the hardest, and I am not sorry for myself or others in their situation. But I will not tell them what they are going through because their lives are different then mine. Sometimes the best wisdom is knowing when to be silent.

        2. Not to mention, why is it out of the question that your wife may travel for her career? If she is a landscaper, perhaps she could make enough to travel for her work. (I don’t know much about landscaping, but I assume it’s not a bad salary.) Even if she doesn’t make tons of money landscaping, she should still have the option to work elsewhere, don’t you think?

          Consider all the times that you might’ve been on TDY, deployed, in basic, or even in tech school. That was for YOUR career. So now it’s her turn, wouldn’t you agree? She deserves to do something she loves. If you both love each other very much, you should both be equally allowed to be whoever you want.

          I remember now that you have a child; but that shouldn’t change anything either. My father was in the Air Force, moving quite a bit, and my mother worked in another state. I grew up in the lower middle class, yet I made a name for myself in my chosen career, bumping me into a “higher class” than my parents combined (if that’s something you care about). It’s not impossible; it just takes an interest and some effort.

      15. You are very ignorant on the lifestyle. The wives are often the only parent around and provide the stability for the kids. With constant deployments and exercise drills when the service man is IN country and the constant moving. The military children lives are constantly in turmoil and upheaval. The one parent is the person that provides stability and the emotional support for the children. This is a full time job and very demanding as well as taking care of every single demand that life throws at them. Sick parents or loved ones dying when you live a world away or just miss seeing the births of nieces and nephews ect. Military spouses work regular jobs as well as taking care of the everyday needs of the children and their spouses. Proud military wife for 20 years and raising 3 amazing children that have learned to leave friends and their ” loves” behind during a PCS move.

      16. I am a military’ wife, prior active duty myself for 6 years., and I built my own company with my clients all being Fortune 200 companies. Trust me- I’m doing my part. And guess what? It only make her list more true than ever. You need to get a grip on reality. I assume you’re a military wife with a “job”? Just know that me, and plenty of other military wives are contrinting members of society, outside of keeping our family together. Enjoy your life as a Starbucks barista. Military wives suffer tremendously and we still keep it together.. And if you are a military wife, you obviously don’t have an active duty spouse who returned from multiple deployments with PTSD. They don’t come home with a handbook on how to be a good wife when your husbands entire mental stability and outlook on life has changed drastically. It is a constant struggle. Everyday. You should educate yourself and stop being so ignorant. – Yours, A military wife who earns $500 K a year and raises the family while he’s away. seats

      17. Naddie
        I’m a military spouse and I don’t work because I would spend more on child care and gas than I would be able to bring home each week. Not to mention the extra daycare cost when my husband leaves at random times. So please don’t make comments about things unless you have a first hand account of them.

      18. Did you even read it? Joyce said that SHE was army (in addition to her spouse being in the armed forces). Wow. Just wow.

      19. Thank you, Nadia! Not every military wife follows their husband around like a dog. My husband chose his career (Army) and I chose mine. The Army gets in the way, but thankfully I’m a strong woman that can handle any situation that comes my way. Mrs. Master Chief, please tell me your husband doesn’t like you riding his coat tails (which you clearly do…)! Also, stop telling each other thanks for the wife’s service. WE AREN’T SERVING ANYONE! The day someone thanks me for my service over my husband, is the day all you wives have destroyed the respected men and women serving this country. Please know that real men (front line, infantry/rangers/sf/delta) laugh at y’all and your idiotic comments. My husband had a great laugh reading this. My husband does not want thanks. I certainly do not want, nor deserve thanks. Proud to be an American where I can be who I want to be at home and in the OR. #tootthathornmrsmasterchief

        1. You have no idea how many ridiculous emails I still get from this dumb post.

          I’m glad to know that there are still many sensible, respectable women marrying into the military. Honestly, no stupid comment here can waiver my opinion on this subject. I’ll admit that at times I question if I am wrong, but then I witness my non-working, childless military dependent-wife peer, and I remember how much I disdain her and her friends’ lifestyles. While she pays no taxes for the rest of her days, she accumulates garbage in her home (fancy blenders/juicers, a climbing wall in her living room, and multiple cars), and brags about these things (“I guess I should find some reason to use my Ninja Ultima, since it’s been sitting around for so long!”) as if she did anything in the world for them.

          These women who stay at home for no reason at all (no children), shouldn’t be voting, if you ask me. I mean, what opinion could they possibly have, besides how society may benefit only them? What year will it be when the US remembers that women can, indeed, do things for themselves?

          1. This honestly is not an attack in any way. I’m a military wife and I just had a baby. I don’t work but it’s certainly not because of lack of drive or ambition. I had to put school on hold to take care of my ailing grandparents. Had I not my mom wouldn’t had to quit her job. I’ve also had many many surgeries (long story) and that makes holding a job more difficult. I admire women that work and are married to military spouses. That’s hard to do it all. Stay at home moms do work though so the comments I’ve seen saying we don’t is wrong. I just wish we could all support one another more instead of attacking each other for our opinions. You working and contributing to your family is awesome and clearly you know what’s best for you. And other women know what’s best for their families.

          2. We each have our own path, mine is no better or worse than yours. It is simply my path as military daughter, wife and mother.

          3. This honestly is not an attack in any way. I’m a military wife and I just had a baby. I don’t work but it’s certainly not because of lack of drive or ambition. I had to put school on hold to take care of my ailing grandparents. Had I not my mom wouldn’t had to quit her job. I’ve also had many many surgeries (long story) and that makes holding a job more difficult. I admire women that work and are married to military spouses. That’s hard to do it all. Stay at home moms do work though so the comments I’ve seen saying we don’t is wrong. I just wish we could all support one another more instead of attacking each other for our opinions. You working and contributing to your family is awesome and clearly you know what’s best for you. And other women know what’s best for their families.

      20. It’s not so easy “get a job” my son in 2 and half An my husband has seen him for about 12 months of his life . If that! My husband is never home! On deployment / excercise / training etc an we live hours from family, as we’re based on his camp. So if I were to work full time wed have to pay £400 /500 + for child are! No way am I paying someone to look after my son when he already looses one parent enough! He needs structure ! He needs support and he needs his mum! You’ve misred this article ! Just because your a miserable b*tch and want to get on at ppl and pull everyone down, the article is aimed at militarily wife’s or people that care. In future if you read something and you dont really agree, just scroll away or delete it. Don’t start having a go! Wind ya neck in an stop being miserable !

      21. I have never in my life heard of a soldier/veteran ever talk like that to another human being especially fellow soldier’s spouse..go wash your mouth out and pray God forgives you!

    2. She never said anyone owed her anything. All she was saying was that alot of people are misinformed when it comes to the pay of our military members. I as a military wife I made the choice to get out of the AF and be the main caregiver for our family. We do live off just my husbands paycheck. I choose my children over a job and I will never regret it!

      1. And that is your choice. No big deal.

        My problem isn’t that you decided to raise your children the way you and your husband wish. I can respect an arrangement like this. That is what the allowance is for, right? To help the families adjust and to stabilize. My issue is with how many people complain about the amount of government assistance they are receiving. I never see active duty folks complaining about pay freeze. Perhaps they know that their paychecks will catch up after the freeze, but the wives, oh boy, do they cry and cry. There is no misunderstanding here. I am the wife of an air force ssgt. I know what they pay looks like for non-officer personnel.

        1. Military paychecks are not “government assistance”. They are hard earned paychecks. Being a military wife, I know LOTS of service members who notice when they don’t get their pay due to budget freezes and who also notice when their cost of living increases don’t happen or when they aren’t paid for deployments like they should be or had been getting paid for them (i.e. budget cuts). I know LOTS of service members who say something…to their brothers/sisters in arms and to their spouse. You don’t seem to be someone who has a personality that screams “come talk to me! I care!” so maybe you don’t ‘hear’ about it because people don’t want to talk to you when you put off this holier then thou attitude.

          1. You’re right, a government paycheck for active duty members is not “assistance”, but what the spouse gets as a bonus for existing, is absolutely assistance. What are you doing to deserve tax money I worked my ass off for? Money I earned my training myself in a field I knew would help me to be an independent, whole person in society.

            So what do you do for me, the tax payer? This is 2015. I don’t want to pay for you and your kids. I’d rather give that money to a single mother holding two jobs.

            I do hear about it, but only from the wives of military men. I’ve never even heard service members or military husbands complaining. It’s probably due to the fact that they understand what their role is, and why they signed up.

            You mentioned that you don’t think I am understanding? Good. I don’t want friends who are entitled to government money, and another person’s paycheck. I only want friends who are real parts of society who work hard and earn what they have. I only want friends with people who can listen to another person’s opinion and chew on it for a while even when it hurts.

            I don’t want to listen to some whiny person who is sad about their life but wont fix it. No one forced anyone into anything. You don’t like the military lifestyle? Leave; no one will judge you, but I doubt you will, because the lifestyle is so damned comfortable.

          2. Nadia- I am a proud Army wife and we dont get this “allowance” you speak of for just existing. We do receive a small amount more in basic allowance for housing. The housing allowance along with my husbands pay is actually less then what we would make total in the civilian world. Dont worry, we did the math. My husband receives no extra pay for having a spouse and children.

        2. Nadia, I’m sure you SSGT husband would be embarrassed by your posts. They are anti-military and full of ignorance. You must be a new wife, who hasn’t lived the life much, therefore thinks our spouses pay entitlements and allowances. You’ll learn, eventually. You must also be living on base. Our HOA’s (because that’s the only “allowance” military personnel get) VERY rarely covers rent off base and NEVER covers utilites. We have paid out of pocket every posting (our 7th). Oh, and since you’re an AF wife, you probably haven’t had to suffer through many deployments…long ones I mean. So why don’t you just take your little, opinionated about that which you don’t know, self somewhere else. When you’ve lived off base in several places, and survived a few 6 month-year long deployments WITH kids, you can come back and play with the big girls.

          1. No, my posts are anti-non-working spouses of military folks.
            No one is embarrassed in my home. I’m not new to the military either, as my grandfather died for the US, my father was constantly deployed, my brother has also been deployed, my husband as well, not to mention plenty of extended family members are government contractors for the military as engineers, etc. Are you trying to tell me that the active duty member in your household did NOT in fact get a bump in pay once they received a dependent?
            Are you trying to make me feel BAD that you had to pay some rent for your place? Whoa.

            Listen, I don’t particularly want to associate with you, (because I tend to prefer adults who take responsibility for their lives), but at what point are you going to introspect and think about why anyone other than you, should care about how hard your life is?

          2. Nadia, I wouldn’t want to associate with a negative, self serving, arrogant, obnoxious, know-it-all like you, ever. I am SOOOO glad most military wives aren’t like you. I’m not a victim. I CHOSE this life, knowing full well what my life would be like. Not complaining one bit. Not whining about paying rent, either, just correcting you. See, if you’re going to speak as if you KNOW what you’re talking about, you should really check your facts first. Love my life as a military wife. Wouldn’t change it for the world. I don’t care what your heritage is! Unless you have done a deployment longer than 2 month, you don’t have a clue. Thank goodness, where we have been stationed I haven’t had to patiently tolerate with any wives like you. Most of them have been kind, respectful, helpful, resourceful, competent, hard working, and supportive. I’m strong, educated, independent, and resourceful. I don’t NEED my husband. I love him and support him.

          3. BTW, Nadia, Don’t respond. I won’t read it anyway, so save your typing for someone who cares what you might have to say.

          4. BAH most certainly does cover rent off base and utilities. And that is the “assistance” our spouses get because they are married.

        3. As an Air Force wife who doesn’t always GET to find a job because we have to MOVE ALL THE TIME, I would love to know where I can find this assistance money. It’d be GREAT for me and my family! Thank you so much to Nadia for pointing this out – what a Christmas miracle

          1. Nadia, you don’t have a clue. We pay taxes, worst w eBay taxes for welfare people that do not work. Putting down spouses of military that do not work is ridiculous. Look at yourself, and welfare, people that don’t work but could, and would rather live on the taxpayers dime. I have been working since I was 16, father navy chief, husband retired as navy chief I am 52, tired of working while some don’t even try. Even so, you are one messed up person.

        4. Nadia I admire you going up against the military wives of the world. Not easy but stand strong. I’ve been enlisted, commissioned and a military spouse and I will NEVER understand posts like the one that started this off. I came from real single parent poverty before I joined and it is NOTHING like being in the military. Comparrisons make me sick.

          1. BOOM.. right there with you Nadia, Ripley, and Joey. All these posts are about is cry me a river and hear my sob story. Signed, A “Prior Army wife” and now Active Duty Sailor of 7 yrs +. Oh and mother…
            PS… “Military Wife isn’t a job, it’s a dependent status. A wife is a job, however, so if more of these complaints were geared toward stresses and struggles of morher/ wife hood, I may be more opt to give a fluck.

        5. Military pay isn’t assistance! It’s their PAYCHECK for dong their job! I am a spouse of a retired Army E7 who did his 20 years. You know why those spouses cry when the pay gets frozen…they CAN’T PUT FOOD ON THE TABLE OR PAY THEIR BILLS! Yes the pay catches up, but the water or electric or the phone companies don’t care, they want the bill paid. Most of us live paycheck to paycheck and have little to no savings. BEING A MILITARY SPOUSE IS NOT EASY AND NOT EVEYONE IS CUT OUT FOR IT!

    3. I wish I didn’t have 2 worry about my bills my rent the kids having thing money in my pocket on a every day bases am not even merry 2 my boy I can’t get help from him but he always want my money and the kids money what type of military man will do a woman and her kids that was I want even pray 4 the ass hold he is am just been real he can get his sorry no good as out our life and find some 1 else 2 used and scams off not this black bitch he not url

  4. I am sure not many realize how hard it is for military families. Thank you for the post and thanks to ALL military families. We generally remember those serving and those who have served but seldom think about their families. It is a shame but also true. God bless each and every one of you for all you do.

  5. I can relate to so much of this. The moving. The having to do everything. The not having control. Yet, I am one of the “lucky” ones. My husband wasn’t ever deployed. Just TDY a bunch of times. Still it was hard, at times, mostly when my children were very young. I think one of the *worst* days, though, when I realized my husband wasn’t even “there,” even when he was, was the day I found out I was going to have a miscarriage and he could only spend a few minutes with me before returning to a high-profile meeting. Not a good day!!!!

    1. These men in the military are just bringing these women down 2 there feet of levels I Dont think these men’s care a lot about there family wife kids the number 1 not u men cause if that the case what man in there right mind will leave his wife and kids just 2 go shoot at some other and mis and get your self kill now that a lot on the wife your kids not 2 see daddy or 2 no they have a daddy I just Dont no what u think url

  6. While I understand that women often only think of THEMSELVES and THEIR problems, the FACT remains that more and more military spouses are just that SPOUSES.


    With women in combat, guess who stays home with the kiddies and doing everything you mentioned above?


    How about cutting us a break sometime???

    1. Dave,
      I’m so glad you brought this up. I was even considering naming the piece “Military spouses,” but then I realized I really have no idea what this life is like for military husbands. I would actually love to see a piece that talks about that point of view, because there are lots of husbands who support women in the military and I’m sure face some very distinct challenges. Thank your for this comment!
      – Sarah

      1. Sarah,
        Thank you so much for this story, very well written. The beauty in this piece is it could be either. My boyfriend (now husband) and I were both in at the same time. He was getting out and I was staying.
        He has bee there every step of the way never complaining and when I PCS’d for a year (and he and my 6 month old could not go) he said three simple worlds. “I got this”.
        Military families are amazing. The sacrifices they all make on a daily basis..the average person could not handle. It truly does make the times together that much more special.
        “No matter how short, embrace the time together.”

      2. Sarah,
        My husband is a military spouse, and has these very same struggles. These 10 things are not unique to women. While men and women do experience some things differently, being the spouse/parent left holding down the fort is not necessarily one of them. I love that you wrote this piece, and would love if even more if it were written with these extraordinary men i mind. Too ofte they arethe silemt, forgotten minority, plugging away at all the workthey usually share, and for some reason,no one even knows or consider they exist. As a member of the Navy, I am grateful for the work and support our military wives provide, but as the regularly deployed half of my ciuple, I am extremely grateful for my Navy husband.

    2. Hey Dave,

      The term “spouse” means a husband or wife, considered in relation to their partner. synonyms: (life) partner, mate, consort; (
      Therefore Military Spouses are husbands and wives who play that role in the home. It is definitely difficult for anyone in that position, and I commend you for doing it! I have been a spouse for 6 yrs and counting. We hold the fort down while our spouses are gone, and it can definitely be overwhelming.
      I appreciate this article because it depicts our struggle, and it reminds me how strong we actually are. Wish you and your family the best of luck!!


  7. Every time I have a wife dealing with deployment for the first time, I told them to stay busy and to think the deployment as a “husband vacation”.Meaning, is the time for her, to acomplish goals, to cook when she feel like it and not because it need to be “ready”; to wait in the microwave,cuz he didn’t made it on time for dinner. ;)

    1. I think the only reason these men go 2 the military is 2 get away from home yell they want the money but if u no u are going 2 be gone 4 years why jump up and leave a world that u was in with your family just 2 leave your family 2 fight in war smart u men are dum u women are o I think am the strong 1 out all cause I let that ass go wasting my life away on shit who going 2 set around just 4 a dam man 2 go kill other or they get kill right have a back bone 4 your self and kids so they will love u much more with a great life cause this is not it url

  8. This was the best account so far of what I learned after 2marriages. One Navy one Army 13 years total 4 kids. My last husband made one . The rest I had alone or with family present. Thank you, because nobody understands our world. I loved the life, just couldn’t make us work anymore. God Bless the spouses!!!

  9. I read this article struck a chord with me. Not a pleasant harmonious chord, but one that would compare to nails on a chalkboard. I sat on it for about 10 hours before I decided to post about it. I wanted to make sure I hit all the wickets of what truly bothers me about this blog post. While I completely applaud the people that wrote it for having created something in an organized fashion piece of writing, the content and sentiment are..ahh let me start here…

    I have to consider myself a subject matter expert on this topic. I have been on all sides of this military triangle. I have been the child left behind (by military Father), I have been the girlfriend/spouse left behind and lastly, I have been the military member, parent and spouse that has done the leaving…let me tell you something here..this group of women and men that feel that this piece of literature has coined their life has bigger problems than that of being a military spouse.

    It has also been my experience that this group (please forgive me here..) is the most self proclaimed victimized, entitled, coddled, needy group of hollow individuals that I personally have encountered. And yes, everyday I encounter these individuals in the commissary staring daggers at me because their kid is throwing a fit and I had head of the line privileges because I’m in uniform, driving on the base (anywhere) and having to wait for their gaggle of yoga pants- stroller pushing- latte sipping- asses to cross the street so that I can get to work on time. Everyday. I was also married (past tense) to one. So believe me when I say…I am a subject matter expert on this.

    Now before you start to roast me- let’s ask ourselves what makes this group special? Special from single parents, parents of children who’s parents have died (regardless
    Of cause), police officers or firefighters families, ANY OTHER PARENT FOR THAT MATTER, ESPECIALLY ONES THAT WORK OUTSIDE THE HOME!!!

    You are not a victim. Loving a super hero does not make you special. You are not special. Your kids are not special. The person that puts country in front of all things personal, is very special. Your kids have the same needs as any other child. I know that is a shocker, cause little perfect Johnny and little angel Susie’s military parent has been deployed for 3 out of 4 years. Guess WHAT!? All kids will face harsh times, rejection, awkwardness fitting in, will have to learn to adjust to changes. That’s life sweetie. And it is hard! It is. Regardless if mommy or daddy has a job that takes them out of the home for long periods of time. But heck, the mommy or daddy left behind is a victim, so why shouldn’t they be…yeah let’s blame that for why your kid is a hellian in the darn commissary. Makes sense.

    This group IS special in that they have more resources available to them to help them deal with all the difficulties of being a military family, than any other. And they are FREE!!! That is special, and should be utilize.

    Only two more points I’d like to make-

    1) If you EVER make someone else responsible for your own happiness, YOU are setting all parties up for failure. (Regardless if it’s your kids, your spouse or whomever!) This is a universal application, not special to military folks. Become a whole person. I dare you.

    2) Your military member (if you are married to them) is a lawful polygamist. Period. The military branch they joined is the #1 in their lives, regardless of your, your kids (not medically related) or THEIR personal needs. Please accept this. Actually, you might have to remind your military member of it from time to time when they are depressed or whine about leaving.

    With all that being said, I want to thank all the wives, husbands and significant others of the military members out there, personally. Family life and marriage isn’t easy under the best circumstances, but perspective can make a huge impact on your life.

    1. While I agree with most of this comment, I have to say that I recognize these aspects of my personality and the way I operate life because of my father amd husband’s time serving in the military. Like you, i have been the child, and now the spouse, and while I do not suggest that I am extra special in any way, these are things that may not occur to people not in the spouse’s situation. Purely as an educational piece, this does have merit. Thank you for your insights and providing some levity to this rather sensitive subject, but there are parts of this that are worth not dismissing.

    2. Thanks for this comment. I have been wanting to respond to clear a few things up. I want all readers to know that in writing about my experience, I am in no way disrespecting or making light of other challenges that other types of families have. Of course, we all face unique challenges and we all reach a point where we are at our limit. I’m just writing from that place. Sometimes, some years, are easier than others. Other times it’s really tough, which you obviously have experienced. I do not consider myself a victim, and I know that my husband’s job is extremely important, so I think I take on a lot of the burden so as not to stress him out, which I think contributes to my stress, sometimes.
      So, I wanted to write this article, as a way to process my thoughts and the life I lead. And there are unique challenges we face, just like there are unique challenges in other lifestyles. This is just my perspective. I can only imagine my husband’s perspective when he has to miss huge milestones that he can’t get back, and that the kids can’t get back. Tough stuff, for everyone in the family.

    3. —-> WRONG <—-
      Wrong in so many ways. It's not a matter of opinion. It's a fact: Military wives ARE Special. Just as our elite forces and "teams" are special. Only a handful make it, just as not all military marriages survive. But the ones that do, are often supported by amazing women.

      These women – They are strong women. They don't stand behind their husbands, they stand beside them. Military Wives ARE special.

      It's your right to feel otherwise. The author's response to your post was classy and graceful, but everyone is entitled to their opinion. No matter what, the fact remains, and it will always remain – the wives of soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines (and even the Coast Guard) are some of the strongest, savviest, most resourceful, and envied women in existence (Except for my ol' Gunny's wife. She was nuts).

      These women aren't just wives. They're our foundation. They're the "reason". What good are resources, friends, what good is ANYTHING when your heart breaks under pressure? I've seen more civilian spouses fail to provide support for their loved one when they're needed the most, more often than military wives. Why? Because of the title – "Military Spouse". It's like being called "Marine", the title alone grants the individual courage and pride. The title "Chief" grants authority and respect. Just as the title, "Military Wife", grants understanding and strength. Yes, they're special. And if they stop believing they're special, they will fail. That is concept that is understood, only by those who have been there.

      They are the "reason".

      Yours Truly,
      A Military Husband

      1. “And if they stop believing they’re special, they will fail.” That’s a really strong statement. So, if they realize that they are not special in their plight as mother and wife (husband or father), they will fail in their lives? I can honestly say, no one can take that away from me regardless what they say, do and no matter how common I am! I guess you miss the part where I said I was a military spouse, the later joined myself. This kind of coddeling is exactly what has fostered this idea that this “subculture” are more deserving and should be felt sorry for… I totally appreciate your wonderful sentiment in honoring your wife. If more people did this and felt this way and actually expressed it (whatever walk of life) , wow- the amazing stuff this would do for our society! You owe your wife. I don’t, sorry. I had to earn everything I have achieved in my life, so did you. And so should she. Not vicariously through other’s achievements. Does Warren Buffet’s wife take credit for him having held the title of “wealthest man in the world”? How about Melinda Gates? Again, I apprecaite your sentiments here, but it’s best served inside your home.

        1. I think it’s hilarious how some say, especially while in a marriage, “I earned everything I have achieved in my life…” – completely forgetting those around them; mother, father, spouse, kids, anything or anyone that provides comfort or some sense of inspiration.

          That’s selfish, self-absorbed, and closed-minded. Now, the author of this blog may not have the heart to say it like it is, but you’re either an angry divorcee or just an arrogant blog troll looking to start trouble, knowing this is a sensitive issue for a lot of people. Either way, as much as I’ve seen of the world, I’m still amazed at how arrogant and self absorbed people like you can be. There’s a bigger picture out there, and you’re missing it.

          Out of all your misled or misguided statements, you’re right about one thing: I owe my wife. There’s a popular proverb that says, “A man (or woman) without a wife (or husband or partner) is like a vase without flowers.” – You might just be the the worlds strongest individual “vase”. You might be layered with diamonds and rubies. You might be worth a million bucks! But you could be so much more – with flowers. You could be worth a million dollars, plus the cost of the exotic flowers! And as a vase without flowers, you’re useless. See, as individuals, we view the world through one set of eyes. With my wife by my side, I can see things differently – based on how she sees the world. So, you might want to expand your narrowed vision a little. If you do, then it’s because someone helped you, and not because you did it on your own. Oh Shnap!

          I, on the other hand, can admit that in my time of need; through hospitalizations, through recovery, through sickness, through unemployment, through moments of rage and confusion – her emotional support pushed me to move forward. So, if you’re that “special case” where you never needed any type of support for anything – you truly are a special person. Unfortunately, like many of us who have hit bottom at some point and in some way (emotionally, physically, spiritually, and/or economically), to make it to a point in one’s life and firmly say, “I did it on my own.”, is usually a statement made by someone who needed the most help. Those who cry out, “I did it on my own” – are only looking to be acknowledged. While others, such as those who are appreciative of where they are because of their personal experiences in a community (such as a community of Military Spouses), are thankful and love sharing their experiences. There’s a difference between sharing experiences…and whining. You, sistersailor – are whining. You’re whining about being alone and whining about having no friends. Maybe, if you changed your view on things – you wouldn’t “sound” so alone.

          Yes, although I personally feel that I “owe” my wife in so many ways – married couples don’t owe each other. They just “do” for each other – and if you were in a halfway-decent relationship, you’d know understand. It’s a dynamic that keeps many marriages going – to be there for each other. It’s not a perfect system, but it’s the best we have. It could be as simple as smiling at each other, or laughing at a perverted joke that no one else laughs about. And when they “do” for each other, they understand. They know. They can never say – “I did it on my own.”

          Surely, if you did everything on your own – imagine what you could’ve accomplished with a little more support? Oh Snap, Again!

          In conclusion, I’d like to end by saying – I’m done responding to this. With the most of the responses to the original post being predominantly in support of the author, you’re pretty much in the minority. That’s fine – because based on your responses, you’re used to being alone.

          Now, go out and grab a personal pan pizza…those are great for parties of one.

          Military Hubster

          1. Great response, Military Hubster! My husband has so graciously said, many times, that he wouldn’t be the rank he is or the man he is if it wasn’t for my love and support. We ARE a special breed, and we are so thankful we have wonderful spouses, who are also a very special breed, that love and support us, too. Thank you for being one of them!

      2. A Military Husband,
        You Sir are a rare find.
        I am a Military Widow and still considered a Military Spouse, Still trying to Solo parent with a Husband in Heaven.
        I resent the aspect of entitlement that I’m supposed to be looking for, I’m trying to make the best of a rotten situation to raise the children in education as my marriage union defined, with a severe lack of change in circumstances to continue.
        I was in a beautiful marriage that lasted a long time, with my best friend, dealing with unfair issues, but loving the life and the people we met.

    4. Agree with so much of this. I really do think alot of wives need to get off there high horses. I am a military wife amongst other things, Martyr not being one of them, You make your own choices in life.

    5. I agree with parts of Sistersailor’s post such as not thinking of yourself as a victim and the fact that all people, no matter what their position in life, will face difficulties. However, I think it misses a bigger point. Life as a military spouse IS different than what many of us experience (I am not a military family member, but some people who I love are) and yes, it IS difficult in many ways. And to pretend that it is not, and to just suck it up, and never discuss those difficulties, just invites more problems later, especially in military marriages. Everyone should have others who at least try to understand and sympathize with what they are going through. And expressing those difficulties does not mean that someone is trying to play the victim, nor does it mean that she thinks that she is the only one who has difficulties. I am happy to have read this post, and I hope it will help me to have a bit more sympathy and gratitude for those who make such huge sacrifices for me and for our country.

    6. There’s in some way, some truth to what SISTERSAILOR expressed here, but I would like to remind her and other readers few things: 1. As you said, and I repeat, “Regardless if mommy or daddy has a job that takes them out of the home for long periods of time.” Spouses and kids might not see mommy or daddy because they have jobs that might keep them out of the house, like you said, but I”m pretty darn sure they have the chance to talk to mommy or daddy on the phone before going to sleep, they will have the opportunity to know about their parents, to hear their voices on the phone, to have that support, even when is over a phone call or SKYPE, or any other technology way…most of the time, our military kids DON’T HAVE THAT CHANCE.

      We have been in the Army for 18 years and I’ve lost the count on the times my kids (teenagers and adults now) went to sleep wishing to hear their Daddy’s voice and that was not possible…so the heck with your opinion…WE ARE SPECIAL, OUR KIDS ARE SPECIAL…AND BECAUSE WE LEARN HOW TO BE STRONG AS A FAMILY…WE WILL ALWAYS BE SPECIAL!

      1. I hope that your kids are SPECIAL and regarded for their accomplishments, talents and individual gifts as people. Also goes for the spouse of the military member. But, I am sure if you were to ask any military brat if they want to people to feel sorry for them and label them as special because of their father or mother’s occupation- they would have an ear full for you. Kids usually don’t like to be “special” in the way you (and others here) are suggesting. I think they can do without the label and entitlement, as this will not benefit them when they have to go out into the real world and realize that the world doesn’t owe them anything. I think some spouses that do not feel properly regarded for their contributions inside the home (or family, social group) look outside for encouragement and acknowlegdement. There is no medal or recognition for what a military spouse has to deal with (other than reenlistment or retirement thank you’s from the command sometimes), because it’s the service member that is actually performing the job, that creates this status. If riding someone’s coat tails and taking credit for their accomplishments is something you all want to do-be my guest. Just don’t expect the rest of us doing the job to glorify it. If the realization that you are not special in your plight rocks the foundation on which you operate- then you have bigger problems than being a military spouse. That was my point in the beginning and my point now. I never promised to be tactful or coddle you in my delivery…but one thing I promise to you is honesty.

        1. And I am glad that you hadn’t coddled anyone. I hope you never do. Part of me wishes there was something you could have argued with me about, just because honesty and stinging truth is so refreshing. There comes a point where, when something really hurts you, you have to look inward and figure out why, then fix it. There are just so many people who are too afraid or lazy to fix it, and I’ve met a lot, especially the wives of military folks.

          It’s a major disservice to the world to lie and coddle people. Americans are so used to getting an award for participation, and it really makes “you did good” much less special than it should be.

          For what it’s worth, I highly respect you, SisterSailor, for your viewpoint and experience. I hope that you will always be this strong and determined. :)

    7. SisterSailor, I just want you to know that I 100% agree with everything you’ve said. You’re not the only one who is completely fed up with this subculture of women.

    8. This is a fascinating discussion and you ALL have compelled me to jump in. I agree with some of the concepts SisterSailor shared, although I absolutely do not agree with the tone and lens through which they were shared. If you spend any time in a military community, you are bound to meet military spouses who do promote themselves as victims or entitled to every benefit and more. But as human beings, we should never judge others without fully understanding their situations – as someone said, until you walk in their shoes.
      I found a lot of truth in this article! After 5 deployments, I am seriously tired and more often than not want to be left alone to focus on the day-to-day. I have a system that works and I am SO proud of my how well my children have adjusted. And yes, I feel pretty damn special!! That doesn’t detract from anyone else’s experience, it’s just an expression of my own. When friends’ spouses go on a week-long business trip and they say they know how I feel, they don’t get it. Kids have trouble adjusting to new schools all the time, but my kids learned about tragic death from IEDs at the age of 5 and worry about their dad’s safety every single day he’s gone. Most of their civilian friends cannot relate to this.
      I think the biggest thing I wanted to weigh in on was this notion of victimhood. I am no one’s victim. I chose my husband fully aware of the lifestyle I would be adopting. I have been extremely fortunate to not only keep working throughout my marriage through eight PCS moves, but have actually built a career. And we’ve grown stronger with each deployment and move. But it’s important to recognize that these are unique challenges and the fact that some individuals struggle with these challenges doesn’t make them any less special or a victim! Just as some people conflate their “specialness” to mean they deserve the world or the world has been so cruel to them, we need to be careful as we reflect on what it means to be a military spouse that we don’t do the same kind of over-generalization or make every assertion an extreme (saying things are difficult means we think we’re victims, saying that people don’t understand means we don’t appreciate the challenges facing others, like single parents, etc.).
      I echo the idea that everyone’s entitled to their own opinion and, as a military spouse, this is central to what our service members are fighting for. I learn more every day from my fellow milspouses and am continuously impressed with their resilience and strength and humor! I’m sorry for anyone who hasn’t had that kind of positive or empowering experience, but that (to me) is what makes these discussions to rich and valuable. Cheers!

      1. Great comments, Lila.
        I too, have appreciated the discussion here. I have reiterated in an above comment, and will say again here, I do not consider myself a victim. I agree with your words here; expressing difficulty does not generalize to victimhood; you have said it well. This article was written to express a specific part of this lifestyle; the tough stuff. There are lots of good things too, which is why I linked to my article from a few years ago, which was mostly positive. The cool thing about this conversation, as I’ve noticed, is that we have so many types of military families who have responded here. Active duty, both male and female, spouses, both male and female, stay at home moms, and working moms have been among the commenters. And the cool thing is that everyone has a different story, a different perspective and a different life, stemming from their own experiences. Where some people agree with what I’ve said, others agree with some, and others agree with none. To be honest, I’ve definitely been educated through some of the points made here that I hadn’t thought of! One thing I want to make clear though, again, as that in writing this piece in no way did I intend to disrespect or disregard anyone’s experience. We all have our own battles to fight. And this piece is small slice of what my actual life is. Of course; we are all complicated and layered. Thank you so much for such an insightful comment.
        – Sarah

        1. Sarah, the people who are complaining here and keep bringing up words such as “victim” and “coddling” are being so self righteous that they are forgetting to do something as s simple as properly read. Reading comprehension: It’s a thing. You wrote a great piece, by the way. :-) It is a great help for those who do not understand the military life to have a better understanding. Has nothing to to do with pity, or coddling, or victimhood. (That goes back to reading comprehension).

    9. So that there is no more misinterpretation of what I am expressing here- “this group of women and men that feel that this piece of literature has coined their life has bigger problems than that of being a military spouse.”

      coin (koin)
      A mode of expression considered standard: Two-word verbs are valid linguistic coin in the 20th century

      Reference: For the American Heritage Dictionary definition: coin. (n.d.) The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. (2003). Retrieved December 3 2014 from

      Maybe if I was smarter (like someone suggested) I would have said “defines their life”, NOT meaning those who sympathize or relate, but those who are DEFINED by their hardship and let themselves become victim to their circumstance. Circumstance that they actively took part in creating. This can be very tempting thing to do, as I have to remind myself of this often.

      If this doesn’t apply to you (as I have no way of knowing each individuals life that reads this) then, it doesn’t. I do think that we all know people who let this happen to them, and those are the individuals for which I am referring.

    10. Dear Sistersailor,
      Thank you very much for your service. It is because of you and others like you, that I can reply freely and respectfully tell you to pound sand. Obviously 10 hours was not long enough for you to ‘sit on it’ in order to respond respectfully and with adequate reflection.
      Your beef about kids acting up in the commissary is noted. I have seen (and unfortunately experienced) it myself. But kids act up in lots of places. You are not special.
      I have never had an issue with folks in uniform getting head-of-the-line privileges, until I saw a member in uniform with HER two kids and spouse and two carts full of groceries who tried to cut the line. SHE was shopping with her family on payday with lots of coupons, and she claimed head of the line privilege because she was in uniform. That really bugged me.
      Sister, do you have children? If not you are in no way a ‘subject matter expert’ in discussing the behavior of children, so don’t go there. What you are is an observer of the behavior of other people and their children in an area that has limited accessibility. I assume that you have never been six+ months pregnant, and that you have never tried shopping with young children. You have never had to find someone to watch your kids so you can go to the commissary without having all that extra ‘help’ from the kids.
      We all make choices, Sister. I chose to be a stay-at-home-mom until my kids got to high school. You make your choices as life suits you.
      You have never personally encountered any of the people who have posted here, so you might consider apologizing for the ignorant insults you have slung.
      Sorry, but I will not forgive you here, because you are simply an angry, intolerant, entitled, resentful, jealous individual who has no sense of what it means to share a life or responsibility with another human being.

      1. If you read the Sistersailor post further up the page, you would see that she was the parent that did the leaving (due to her being active duty on deployment). Again, like others in this blog, you cherry-picked what you wanted to read, and didn’t read the whole context of her words. Apparently, Sistersailor has experienced a lot more than you in life and has the right to call out some of this petty behavior that SOME military spouses do on a daily basis. That list of insults in the last sentence you wrote, you have no fucking right to say that because you don’t know Sistersailor specifically!!!
        I could throw insults around too, but to be honest, I like to rise above it!!!

      2. I’m so sad to hear women in similar situations are so nasty and vulgar twords each other. We should be supporting each other no matter what our situation is. “You” make me lose hope for our future! You make me cynical ! I fell even more hopeless for ur children!!!!

    11. I think what you’ve failed to realize here, Sister, is that you actually haven’t seen all sides of the military family. I can honestly say that I am envious that you grew up as military brat and I’m envious that you have served because that perspective for me would be invaluable in understanding what my husband is going through and what my future kids may go through.

      You see, I am from a small non-military town. I don’t have any relatives who are military. My impression of the military growing up was limited to the parodied and glamorized version that you see on television. When I was 17, I fell so hard in love with a boy, I knew I would never leave his side. I envisioned our future together, which consisted of what I saw as normal. We would go to college, we would have careers where we worked 9-5 jobs, we would buy a home, stay put, raise a family and our kids would grow up the same way we did.

      That boy that I fell in love with at 17, he joined the USAF at 18. By 19 we were married and neither of us had a clue what we were getting ourselves into. I’m 30 now and I feel like I’ve been through the gambit of being a military spouse. I’ve spent the last decade relearning how to live. I’ve adjusted my daily and long-term expectations. How handy would it be to have been born military brat instead?

      If you were friends with any number of military spouses, you would know that most of us aren’t military brats. Most of us aren’t veterans. Most of us, shockingly, aren’t lazy, coddled, victims. It is a fact that most of us have pushed a stroller at one time or another. Also, who doesn’t like coffee? Most of us admire women in uniform more so than we admire the men. But you wouldn’t know that because you’d rather judge us and lump us all into a stereotype. While I have certainly known some active duty women who lived up to their own negative stereotypes, I know that those women are few and far between.

      This article is about one woman’s experience. No, she does not speak for all of us, she doesn’t claim to. We are all different. No, we are not special as you have pointed out, but we are not all the same.

    12. I don’t think this article has anything to do with considering military spouses “special” over any other group that you mention. I think it’s an explanation of things people might not have known about mil spouses. I also don’t think it victimizes, coddles, or entitles anyone. It is just exactly what the title suggests: “a list of things…”. For example, if a non-military friend read this, I’m sure he or she would be enlightened. It just gives a glimpse into how my life is a little (or a lot) different than theirs, or maybe it would show them how we are the same, depending on their situation.

      I’m sure there is a website devoted to single working parents, deceased parents, firefighters, and police officers, etc. and they all probably have similar posts to this. This just happens to be about military spouses because it is on A MILITARY SPOUSE WEBSITE.

  10. You are a mad person Sistersailor.
    I just didn’t like the way the article was written. Too much of “see #4, going back to #1, look again at #3″…too much repetition. And yes……Sistersailor is right, we are not special, our children are not special. As a military dependant, I’m doing what I’m supposed to do while my husband is been deployed. He takes care of the country, I take care of the family. As simple as that.

      1. MALEMILITARYSPOUSE- I am replying to your comment to mine here because reply function was unavailable on mine.
        I did read the post that Sister Sailor wrote and I understood it completely. For you to infer that I didn’t is foolish. I disagreed, but I completely understood her writing. I am sorry that you feel the way that you do. Your life must be very sad for you to make such assumptions and to not be able to see or understand another’s opinion. I support my husband and this life style that we chose together, but just because we chose to do this as a team does not make the article any less truthful.
        While I agree that the very rare individual acts in the manner which sistersailor describes, I will also restate that I believe that most military spouses are kind, loving, supportive and giving and for YOU, sir, to deny this fact, is ludicrous and I do not wish you life vision on anyone.

        I can honesty say that I am sickened by all this infighting between military members and their families. It is child like at best.We need to support each other after 10 years of war, hold each other up and care for each other. I believe there is no room for the nonsense that you spew with your vitriol and hate. Good luck and I hope you have a better day.

  11. Great post! It is refreshing to have somebody put into words what I have felt off and on over the past decade. I especially appreciated number 7 – it is obvious that deployments are hard, but most civilians don’t understand that “home” does not mean “home”, and sometimes I think that is even harder for me emotionally. In no way did I take you as saying that only military wives go through hard times and have husbands that are gone a lot, in fact I appreciated your shout out to single moms because I very often feel the same awe at all they do.

  12. I know my message posted is obviously not for all spouses. My mother (former military spouse) was my role model and she is a pillar of strength, because of what she learned to do as a military spouse. As a child, I watched her struggled to learn how to do all the moving, shifting, sacrificing, step-ball-change that is the dance of the military military lifestyle. I’m not angry Marisol, I think you miss the point. I am honored to serve my country. I willingly accept all that befuddles my military life. The purpose behind my message is simply the hope for spouses to gain a footing in who they are and understand their own self worth outside of their roles to family. Many people do not, will not. Either they are too lazy, too scared, or just uneducated that they have the right (and really duty) to it.
    Nobody can handle everything, not the best mom, wife- whatever role you have in the military family. We all have our breaking points. That’s my point- no matter what walk of life you come from, everyone is tired. Everyone juggles. However, I don’t feel okay about the entitled attitudes that some spouses wear! I never had the option to stay home with my children. I’m not MAD at “yoga pants”, because they do, I just want them to get out of the way and stop making themselves so darn important. And maybe my message is not very politically correct, I get that. But it’s real. And it’s from the other side of the “entitled” line, saying get over it and start growing as an individual. Your kids will grow up and leave your house (if you are lucky), figure yourself out so you are not living a lie in 20 years- or worse can’t hack it and quit sooner. Maybe it’s where I’m stationed, don’t know. And sometimes I wear yoga pants too.
    You would not believe the, “Well, I’m a (insert rank) wife” requests for special treatment because of their spouses rank or position in the military. There are so many spouses with families that will even follow their military member to foreign duty stations and refused to leave the base. They constantly need attention and the first thing the Ombudsman said to my group at my new command, was about this very thing. (I guess she was a little taxed in her role… ) Those resources are there because the military constantly has to deal with demanding spouses, and if they aren’t dealt with- their war hero can do their job. Which, is really the whole point of this crazy game we are playing, right?

    As crazy of a lifestyle military families lead, they actually have a more stable version than most civilians that are stuck trying to pay insurance premiums the size of mortgage statements and are always on the brink of loosing their jobs and being homeless. That will not happen to a military family. And also for the military member who’s mission doesn’t always match what’s in their heart, the guilt of missing another event, birthday, milestone- knowing you can NEVER get that time back and no matter how many years go by you still feel that pain…going away and everyone has changed and grown and you feel like you just left yesterday- but no longer fit in to your family’s life….that’s really serious. That’s really hard.

    1. Yikes!! For you to say this is very wrong:
      “The purpose behind my message is simply the hope for spouses to gain a footing in who they are and understand their own self-worth outside of their roles to family. Many people do not, will not. Either they are too lazy, too scared, or just uneducated that they have the right (and really duty) to it.”

      I am educated, smart, and am far from lazy. I have a sense of self-worth and how dare you limit what I do, say, think or feel. I understand your sentiment that woman should gain an understanding of who they are but being a supportive spouse is a valid option if anyone wishes to choose it. Your statement says that I must find my self-worth in an area YOU deem worthy, why, how big of you to dictate where I find myself and what I find important.
      I do find a sense of worth by caring for my family, my husband and the other people I come in contact within this military life. Your statement belittles my contribution to this country and I find it insulting for you to presume that I am lazy and uneducated. If you did not intend for that to be the message, than mea culpa, but maybe if you were smarter you would have been able to make your intent known without insulting people.
      In the end, we all must find our own path and no one can tell you how to do it. Woman need to stop putting each other down and raise each other up.

      1. I would never suggest anything of the sort- I think this comment goes a little far and I understand you feel offended, but please don’t think I have some magic ball to know about your life, Erika. You are preaching to the choir Ma’am. When I was deployed my kids had to rely on their father. I had to trust him to do what was best for the kids. I did implicitly. I would wait sometimes two hours to make a phone call that would disconnect within a minute- then try to recall 10 more times before I had to give up my spot. But my kid’s aren’t victims of my military career. And they may not understand everything until grown and parent’s themselves. I bet truck driver’s families miss their mommies and daddies. I bet the single mom’s kids miss their mom when she has to work three jobs to stay ontop of clothing and feeding growing children’s needs. I’m not special in what I do everyday. There are many of us here doing the same thing, going through the same thing- and none of us have the right to judge each other’s personal decisions. I joined the military because I wanted to make my contribution to the world and citzen of this country, bigger than the mere existance of myself. I hope someday my children will understand that. I’m not implying anyone should run out and do what I have to make this kind of impact (if I do at all), but I believe you should be the change you wish to see in the world, and not the victim of it. Thank you for the insight.

        1. What are you talking about? Who said anything about being a victim?? You said that people like myself were lazy and uneducated and then in this reply you state that we shouldn’t judge others. Have you ever been acquainted with the phrase about the pot and the kettle?
          Where you and I need to agree to disagree is the point about specialness. Everyone is special, truck driver, single moms everyone in their own way. This article wasn’t about that though, it was about the military spouses, who in my opinion, are very special. You don’t need to believe that, which is obvious, but at the same time you shouldn’t judge me or my life, EVER, as you stated you don’t know me.
          I think what we do as sposues is noble. We love and care for a man or woman who has vowed to give their life in the service of our country. That empowers me. It makes the long days of deployment seem not so bad, I am giving to the greater good. I am very sorry that you do not see things this way as it is sad state of mind to assume that others are victims when we are strong, capable, loving and hard working.
          “I hope someday my children will understand that. I’m not implying anyone should run out and do what I have to make this kind of impact (if I do at all), but I believe you should be the change you wish to see in the world, and not the victim of it”
          Again you are implying that I feel like I am a victim. Do you believe that I just sit around doing nothing wringing my hands. Far from it. But being the spouse of a military member is hard and sometimes it sucks but we do it for the greater good. Now before you go off the deep end, I understand that other people have hard lives too, but that fact does not negate that military spouse have hard lives too.
          I get a real sense of superiority from you and again I can not effect that except to point it out to you. I am also not judging your choices I am judging your words, the content of your character do to speak.
          I hope this clears up my status as a victim.

          1. So that there is no more misinterpretation of what I am expressing here- “this group of women and men that feel that this piece of literature has coined their life has bigger problems than that of being a military spouse.”

            coin (koin)
            A mode of expression considered standard: Two-word verbs are valid linguistic coin in the 20th century

            Reference: For the American Heritage Dictionary definition: coin. (n.d.) The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. (2003). Retrieved December 3 2014 from

            Maybe if I was smarter (like someone suggested) I would have said “defines their life”, NOT meaning those who sympathize or relate, but those who are DEFINED by their hardship and let themselves become victim to their circumstance. Circumstance that they actively took part in creating. This can be very tempting thing to do, as I have to remind myself of this often.

            If this doesn’t apply to you (as I have no way of knowing each individuals life that reads this) then, it doesn’t. I think that we all know people who let this happen to them, and those are the individuals for whom I am referring.


          2. Read and understand the entire original post, because its obvious you didn’t!!!
            I’ve seen the things that Sistersailor has seen, and for you to deny that it doesn’t exist, and that the stereotype isn’t real, then you are obviously blind to the reality of a large selection of these shameful military spouses that hang onto the coat tails of their partner’s achievements. I see it everyday…

      2. I think you misunderstand what I am writing here, where you quoted. I am not saying that people must work outside the home to gain this understanding of themselves. They can find any number of ways to do this, whatever works best for them. But it is hard work to figure yourself out. Digging deep inside and facing the ugly is really hard and scary. Admitting that you may be doing something wrong or thinking in a non-constructive way, and then actually changing it can be a very hard thing to do. People do not want to do this sometimes, because of how hard it is. That’s what I meant about lazy. Some young mothers (even older ones from traditional homes) don’t know that they have a right to do this- work on themselves. Sometimes women are taught that it is selfish to take care of yourself. But I feel that if you don’t take care of yourself you can’t care for others. That’s what I meant about the uneducated part. Not that people are stupid, but that no one ever told them they have a right to their own identity.

  13. This is exactly why, when thanking a military member for their service, I also make it a point to thank their spouse as well. One can only imagine the challenge of being a military spouse with children.

  14. Well , we got engage before 2m before deployment ;( the most difficult situation in my life , but the joy of planning a wedding and a life together after Matt is done with deployment keep our love alive , 4m before ends he got emotional detach of me and we lost our emotional connection , he cancel the wedding and start fighting , I was trying to understand that , all those longest nights , sleep depravation , not eating right , stress and work wasn’t helping !! Unfortunately some times doesn’t matter how strong is the LOVE ;( ;( distance change people and feelings !! He found a military woman in Afghanistan when he got deployed and decide to come home with her and live with her !! Not all the love stories end in a happy ending ;( !! His happy with his girl !! And end it up broken heart , with depression and sadness no one would take away from me ;( ;( !!

  15. My son is in the military and I have a deep and lasting admiration for our daughter in law. Add to all of the above 3 young children with health challenges, including a 7 year old daughter with Type I diabetes, ( diagnosed when she was 4) the 8 year old boy – diagnosed when he was about a year old with an immune system deficiency,and now a diagnosis of celiac disease for all three. Then add to that a high risk pregnancy, and they are PCS ing ( transferring ) clear across the country in her 7 month… and you have my daughter in law’s life. She gets so very little sleep when our son is gone, as the grand-daughters diabetic monitor goes off multiple times a night… and – they home school. Our incredible and beautiful daughter in law handles it all and keeps smiling .. I do not believe I could have done that. How about a future article on the military parents?

  16. Sarahlynn, I feel your response to Dave is a cope out. Sure, male spouses have unique problems, but from my experience every single one of your points is still valid. They need friends, but have even harder times making them because they are male. You could relate and include them, but once again the “military spouse” groups remain “wife’s clubs.” Articles like this continue to ostricize male spouses and they need your understanding and support too! It is too easy to say “I can’t relate to you,” when really all military spouses male and female have the same struggles of dealing with the military lifestyle. Please start looking for similarities versus just saying “you are different!” That doesn’t provide support! I do agree with all your points for military families– my husband is the true hero!

    1. Hi Mary,
      So interesting to hear you say military husbands share these same experiences! I actually think it may be more difficult for them, because there aren’t as many, and as you said, they have a tendency to be marginalized in a group that is mostly made up of women. That’s what I meant in hoping for a piece from their point of view. Maybe that would help with making connections? I completely agree that they need understanding and support too, and like the idea of looking for similarities. I believe they probably have different challenges but probably also relate to many of the same. Good points here.
      – Sarah

  17. I believe it takes an incredibly strong woman/man to be married to a military person. I have a very close relative who has a husband that is on duty 3 weeks on with limited home time and 1 week at home. she is a single parent basically ( 2 kids under 3) with NO HELP WHAT SO EVER 24/7 . when I read these posts where many marriages break, the solitary confinement, the spouse is living a Groundhog Day life , being transferred from one place to the next, having no support ( my family member had to arrange everything without any help from the military branch ) where she is mom and dad and playmate and housekeeper and chauffeur and cook and on and on….takes a special person to make lemonade out of lemons. I have seen what she does, goes thru and misses. I myself am sure I would not want to live that kind of life, but God Bless you that do.

    1. Hi there, I just need to clarify something and make a correction. Military spouses are NOT single parents. A single parent does not mean that one spouse is deployed or working late most of the time. A single parent has no other resources other than him or herself to raise a child. Let’s look at what the military provides to both the active duty member and their dependents.

      * BAH- this is the monthly non taxable housing allowance ( how many single parents know that without fail their housing is paid monthly as a non taxable stipend?) This amount is very fair, and based on location, dependents. This is public info you can look it up. (

      * FREE HEALTHCARE. Yes all Active duty members and their spouses get free health care for all appointments, procedures, hospitalizations and medications. Never a co-pay with the highest level of TRICARE. Single parents do not get this.

      * Hazard Pay/Sea Pay/ Separation Pay. When a member is deployed, there are other extra stipends ( tax free) that the family gets.

      * Exceptional family member program. For members who have children with special needs, there are programs in place so they only get stationed at places where there are programs available for special needs kids.

      At the end of the day, a service member spouse can STAY AT HOME to raise kids because all the rest is taken care of. Raising children is always difficult, especially when the spouse is away. It is heart breaking and painful for all who sacrifice. But please, it is not remotely appropriate to call a military spouse a single parent in any sense. Most single parents I know have to work at least one full time to job to make ends meet and so many I know have opted not to get their own healthcare so they can pay for healthcare for their kids.

      ~ A grateful military spouse

  18. @sistersailor. God bless you. You have the aducity to speak for all military spouses. Rest ensured, my experience far out weighs yours and I would NEVER discredit someone else’s experience or thoughts. As a matter of fact, I relate to most of what this military wife has written.

    @Mrs. Payne, thank you. Please pay this person no mind. Her comments speaks to her and has nothing to do with you.

  19. SarahLynne,

    I have to say that your humility and Grace in dealing with criticism is admirable. You wrote a piece from YOUR perspective – that of a military WIFE! I don’t understand why anyone feels the need to criticize you for not writing about THEIR perspective. By writing about YOUR experiences, I did not see you invalidate anyone else’s experience. But, several here have said that’s what you did. Seriously??? If you HAD tried to include someone else’s perspective, someone surely would have criticized you for that and said, “What do you know?”

    I’m honestly so tired of people criticizing others online just because they can! I moderate ALL comments on my blog and this is why. When a person isn’t even posting on a “hot-button” topic, someone still gets his or her knickers in a twist. How sad!

    Keep on being real. You can ‘t please everyone. But SOME of us really enjoyed and/or related to the post.


  20. I found this piece to be spot on.
    @ sistersailor- you appear to be very angry- maybe seeking out some of those free resources you speak of might help you to gain some perspective on how to accept another person’s view as simply that- their view.
    As a military spouse who had an extremely successful and lucrative career prior to marrying my military man- I found it extremely hard…. devastating actually… when the time came that I was forced to give up that career due to the demands the military was placing on my husband. I went from being a manager of hundreds of people and earning well into 6 figures to being a stay at home mom. Something I NEVER wanted to be. So believe me when I say…. managing people and schedules at the office… working under the stress of imminent deadlines, managing budgets, vendors, logistics…. and much much more- all of that was a CAKE WALK compared to what I am faced with as a stay at home, military spouse and mom of two insanely active boys. @sistersailor- I’m sorry the yoga pants ladies got in your way- I WISH I could be one of them- by my lifestyle currently does not afford me that luxury. Don’t you dare try to generalize all spouses as having an easy and privileged life full of resources and hand-outs. In our 20+ years in the service I have met MANY, MANY, MANY military spouses… men and women… each one with unique struggles, challenges and gifts. We are similar in many ways- certainly all of the above mentioned by SarahLynne- but we are each unique and yes…. SPECIAL!
    @SarahLynne- I absolutely commend you on your gracious responses to the haters here. Clearly- I do not have that same grace.

    1. @ leann, Forced? Sounds more like CHOICE to me. Your husband chose a job that makes demands on him and you CHOSE to give up your career to support him. Only a self proclaimed victimized, entitled, coddled, needy hollow individual (cheers for that @sistersailor) would think that you were somehow held at gunpoint when in reality it was your own choice.

        1. RNWAG and NADIA… Your critical comments here, make YOU not HER “hollow”, and imply a lack of psychological & sociological depth and maturity on your part. They suggest that you lack of compassion and/or the ability to put yourself in someone else’s circumstances. I’m hoping it’s just a poor choice of words. If not, then…

          The view expressed in your reply to LeAnn is partly why there are so many divorces and screwed up children, Military or Civillian. Good marriages are based on spouses supporting one another and there is give and take. Giving your kids the best foundation for them to build their lives on is crucial too. If you TRULY values these things and put your kids and marriage first (over yourself), then sometimes you DON’T have a choice. Everyone has different strengths and weaknesses. It sounds like being a stay-at-home Mom wasn’t something she felt she should be (because of her perceived weaknesses) and yet, she did it (“sucked it up”) to support her spouse and fill the home-front gaps as he became less available. Yes, TECHNICALLY she CHOSE to give up her career but if that was the only way she could be a better mom or spouse then she really didn’t have a choice. Additionally, EVERYONE needs to have their efforts appreciated and rewarded/recognized and when you are employed, you get that daily in some form. Being an at-home-parent is the least valued role a person will perform and is, in fact, (as you so sadly do in your reply above) demeaned and put down. Of course she would be sad to give up her career where she was valued and felt confident in her abilities so when she said it was “devastating”, she was just being honest and real about how it felt at the time. If you read the whole post, you would see that she had her “mourning period” and then “sucked it up” and has put in the effort needed to do a GOOD job of being an at-home parent & spouse. Give her some credit for putting her personal need for validation and “comfort zone” to the side for the sake of her family. Believe it or not, MANY people these days DO NOT. I’ve witnessed this and have seen the results when I help out at our school.

          You don’t know her circumstances so don’t be so quick to judge. As for hand-outs, I suspect she’s one of the MANY resourceful ones who figures out ways to get around challenges so she doesn’t need “handouts”. Actually, she probably shared her career sacrifice story to show that many at-home spouses, like her, DO know how to work hard and earn a living to support themselves–some previous posts on here suggest otherwise. That was only one piece of her experience…an example of a sacrifice many spouses willingly (even if reluctantly) make for their spouse’s career…a moment in time.

  21. Loved the article and what Cara had to say… Our narcissistic society cannot just appreciate the heart and stamina a military spouse needs to have to endure and continue to support this type of lifestyle… Shame on navy sailor chic who is such a bad place. I wish her peace and hope she gets the much needed therapy she so clearly needs.
    Her rant was almost hard to read…
    Again, thank you for this generalized article…

  22. Say what you want about spouses not being special, blah blah blah. But Military kids are special. They are tougher then the rest PERIOD. They didnt choose this lifestyle they just got stuck in the middle of it. Trying to adjust as a teenager is something I couldnt even imagine.

    1. Taken from a Princeton Journal: “Military Children And Families; Resilience Among Military Youths”, 2013:

      “One review of research found that, compared with their civilian counterparts, military-connected youth function better than other children in several domains that help build resilience, including self-regulation, intellectual and academic performance, and emotional wellbeing. Many of these studies were conducted before the current wars began; however, more recent work suggests that military youth are less likely to engage in risky behaviors and are more open to differences in other people; young people can use such strengths when they encounter the adversities associated with military life.”

    2. As a former (well we are never former BRATS) Military Brat, it was a great life. Yes I moved often and as an only child it was sometimes lonely, but I wouldn’t change a thing. I have lived in 3 different countries, have spoken German and Italian, seen places other people only dream of seeing. I moved at the beginning of my senior year, but instead of poor me, I looked at the adventure and the opportunities. I was lucky that my parents always taught that when you live in a community, you learn the language, you get out and meet people and you don’t just stay in the American community. Not a weekend went by that we didn’t go somewhere, learn something, and share something. I then was a military wife and am now a mother of a military person. Your attitude will dictate your success as a military dependent just like your attitude will dictate your success in civilian life. So those of you who blame the military for your woes, get over it.

  23. Sistersalior,
    Spot on! I was on both sides, I deployed and so did he. We did it without needing recognition or separating ourselves from other families as if the struggle was harder. It is a unique lifestyle, but it could be much worse. We get the privilege to live in free housing and get medical benefits. I had to see families struggle living in a war zone, those children had to watch their farthers die in front of their faces. I knew how good we had it. Everything else you mentioned hit the nail on the head for me.

  24. As a military spouse of 26 years and mom of two children, I truly appreciated your article! As I am also a DOD employee working with victims of domestic violence and child abuse, I will say that @sistersailor needs to go to her closest counseling office to resolve some of that anger and resentment she has built up. Military spouses do not ask to be recognized. We take it because we love our husbands and this country. When we read blog posts by our fellow spouses, we don’t scream it in your ear….you choose to read it. So if you don’t like it – don’t read it. Thank you for making me once again remember that my sisters are in this with me and the service we provide to our spouses, children and country is invaluable!

  25. Just the mere fact that the lit of you are jumping down “sistersailor”‘s throat for an accurate perception from us female military members eyes, is proof that you live up to the stereotype we see everyday. Instead of attacking her and telling her she needs help, how about saying “I’m sorry you’ve had bad experiences with other spouses. We are not all like that. Some of us appreciate and respect what all of you in uniform do.” A lot of us female military members have had bad experiences with the wives. We’ve been looked at as failures to our husbands and children, sluts, the “potential” other woman, not feminine enough and undeserving of the same recognition our male counterparts get. Our stay at home spouses (especially the husband) have little or no place among your circles or cliques and neither do we. Please try to understand her/our point of view. Some bad apples have truly ruined the bunch for you guys. With that said, I have had the pleasure of calling a great many spouses dear friends and lifesavers! My love goes out to all associated with the military. Let’s hear each other out and make a positive change!

  26. Stereotyping and then criticizing an entire group of people (whether male or female, spouse or active duty member), without ever saying, “But, I realize you are not ALL like that!” is not accurate, kind, or fair. It tells me that (a) someone was in too much of a hurry to think through a well-reasoned response; (b) was maybe just having a bad day and didn’t really mean to be quite so rude, or (c) really feels that way. I’m not sure what has happened here for any specific response, but the overall tone of accusations flying in all directions is disturbing.

    I have been the military wife who was judged by a lower ranking spouse who assumed I was one of “those” wives AND by a higher ranking spouse who assumed I was not “worthy of her time”. Yet, I had plenty of friends from a variety of ranks who knew me for who I was because they didn’t judge me in advance based on my husband’s rank, OR they eventually realized I wasn’t the “(stereo)typical” rank-wearing military spouse.

    For what it is worth, my father was in the Navy. When I was in elementary school, I barely knew him! We lived on a tight budget, so I know exactly what that is like. Thank God I had parents who knew how to scrimp and save so that we always had a house to live in, clothes to wear, and food on the table! But, we never lived “fancy”. I never had a brand new pair of designer jeans and I didn’t want one! There were many things that I did not have because my parents couldn’t afford it and would NOT pay for it with credit. Did I ever feel deprived or poor? NO! My parents never taught me to be that way! Also, I didn’t grow up with all of these notions of privilege, or lack thereof, because we NEVER lived on base. When I grew up and became a military spouse, we only lived on-base once and THAT was the only time I ever had to deal with bad attitudes and judgment.

    I think a lot of people (in general, not just here) need to step back and really evaluate what their demeanor is saying to others. As a generally positive person, I find negativity very exhausting. I’m much more likely to befriend someone with a smile than a scowl! Think about it!

    Finally, I have never – not even once – worn yoga pants! I do respect the uniform and those wearing it. My father, my husband, my father-in-law, my brother-in-law, and my brother have ALL worn the uniform. I have many, many friends who have worn, or still wear, the uniform. I respect them all and understand what a sacrifice they have made! I know how to show respect by getting out of the way and staying out of the way. It is still common courtesy! Maybe some of those yoga pants wearing, coffee sipping, stroller pushing spouses are just rude regardless of what their spouse does for a living!

  27. SaraLynne, I would like to echo Cara R’s initial comments; you indeed gracefully responded to the critics with tact. I enjoyed your piece. My wife pointed me to it because it reminded her of what i go through…and pointed out some things she had not realized.

    I am the husband of a 16 year Air Force active duty L/D nurse. I did 7 years active active duty AF. We decided I should get out so we could start a family and have some “stabilty”. LoL! I immediately went to work for the AF as a civilian. 3 moves and 3 kids later, I must say most of your article hits the nail on the head for me. Again, you wrote from your perspective and i appreciate you letting us into your life in this manner. Oh and your #4 spot on.

    My spective is different but not because I am male spouse married to female memeber. Not because i am a vet who understands 1st hand the military will come first until my wife retires. I believe the fact that i work full time and have stayed on par with my military couterparts as far as responsibilities, TDYs, and PME without having on the uniform…while being mom and dad…makes this very unique for my household. I am currently a GS13 and have not used my dependant status as a crutch however that’s adifferent blog subject.

    Thanks for opening up this topic for discussion. It has provided a point of discussion and understanding for my wife and I.

    – McB

    1. I’m so glad this has opened a path for discussion for you and your wife. What a great compliment.
      – Sarah

  28. Thanks for articulating what all military wives already know!! So true. We have 5 kids between us, and going on 8 years married…still have another 3-6 years before he retires. Even with all the difficulties, I wouldn’t trade my soldier or our life for anything!

  29. Ok, so basics first, i am a nurse, husband is air force. 2 kids, 7 and 9. My son went through 5 tests with dad deployed and only 4 at home.

    1. Ok, so basics first, i am a nurse, husband is air force. 2 kids, 7 and 9. My son went through 5 tests with dad deployed and only 4 at home.

      1. Years even, phone keeps submitting before i’m ready!! Anyway, can i Just day thanks you to @sistersailor for your expertise in ALL things mlitary; but can i please add that not all kids react the same way too deployment, my son was well adjusted to deployment (cried for about an hour then got on with it) but my younger daughter has developed anxiety disorder and a inability to speak in front of people she doesn’t know, and having been referred to mental health they have a direct link to dads deployment and her mental health . I am fairly detached from his lifestyle, yes I live in housing but have my own life and career, and my daughter is extremely well behaved (just so you know I am not blaming every little strop on deployment), but just so you know more and more mental health issues like these are being diagnosed in military children, and having had a four year battle to get my daughter to say hello in public I find it a little bit offensive to have it dumbed down by you!

  30. This is a tad disturbing of an article, honestly speaking. All military wives are not grouped into the one stereotypical (mostly negative) form. The same mold that my family was shaped of when I was a military dependant growing up… Times are different. Women are worth far more than being the ‘home front’ like we were in earlier American days. But noticing would require one to pull their head out of the four corners of their little world.
    First, some military wives have wives. Not husbands (it’s okay, it’s taking a while for people to catch up). Secondly, sometimes military wives have careers. Ones that their spouses support as equal. And us, the same.
    It’s a shame… When you want so badly to be known as the spouse of a service member, but at the same time you don’t because of the reputation we have as a group that we need to be felt sorry for and coddled… Constantly voicing how hard it is to be a housewife doing chores and errands for a roof over their head and grocery/shopping money. In a nutshell, is very sad to see more dependants than spouses.
    You told us your story, now I’ve told you mine.

  31. Missed one out…..there are some out there who lie/cheat & have affairs with someone elses husband!!!I know first hand as this happened to me……..

  32. This goes for reservist wives too. Hard to flip between civvie wife to Army wife continuously, family suffers and it takes you to breaking point

  33. I find sistersailor’s reply to be laughable (and, honestly, typical). She’s a subject matter expert on her own life, not anyone else’s. To claim to be the latter is beyond arrogant and she should be ignored.

  34. Fantastic well written. Have been a military wife for 23 years, following being in the Army myself so I knew what I was getting into. But we have had 3 amazing children and made the most of the military experience. Now moved to the military in Australia again having a fantastic time. However, it’s been all those things you mentioned and very tough for all but working together gets you through a great husband, kids and amazing friends as without them I would have gone to bits. Well written x

  35. I would love to see an article on the military mom………the woman that are deploying and leaving their spouses/children….. I know plenty of women who have had to turn the reigns of their own child’s life over to another person in order to care for them. Yes it is sad when a child’s daddy leaves on deployment but when mom leaves it changes their world. Some of these same military wives are also active/reserve as well and it would be nice to see something on them as well.

    1. Amanda, I think that’s a great idea. I know some women, family members included, who are active duty and have to leave their children for months at a time. It creates such a challenge, with having to find childcare, etc, since often the dad also works full time and can’t be a full time caregiver. I’ve known kids that have had to move across the country for a few months during their mom’s deployment, to be with temporary caregivers. And, the kids don’t choose this life; they are born into it. I am always amazed at their resilience. Maybe I’ll do some interviews. :)
      – Sarah

  36. You are all fantastic, wonderful people! You all have my undying admiration, especially my daughter, who has moved so many times! My granddaughter who has changed schools until boarding bringing a new set of problems!! Now a posting to Saudi early next year!
    My heart goes out to each and everyone of you and your children

  37. OMGOSH…where was this when I needed it to help people understand. I would add to this list #11. You don’t know how I feel! I heard all to often from people “I know how you feel, my husband has had to travel for work too.” BULL!!! My response, “The day you have to wake up and ask yourself IF your husband is alive today, that is when you will know how I feel everyday.” So if you know someone who is going through a deployment, check this list and understand. But to those who are the ones making rude comments on here…you are the ones on your high horse! This is in so many ways what it is like for many people. Particularly those who do not come from a military family. Especially sistersalior, you obviously grew up in a military environment and so you were taught and learned early how to handle this life, you also had more support than most spouses do. Us being the first ones in our large families to experience the military life had no support our understanding of what it was like, so these pointers would have been SO INCREDIBLY helpful when I couldn’t figure out how to explain to family and friends why I was so different and I was barely learning to understand what I was feeling myself. And some people are stronger than others, one reason being some have no idea how to handle it all because there was no one along the way too teach them. Small example being how much control the military has over your life, neither of us knew exactly what that meant until we were faced with it, like planning our anniversary ahead of time and then learning that they were changing a mandatory yearly training to be on our anniversary every year, so losing money and wasting vacation days and things like that came as a shock at first. That is something very important that “seasoned” military people should look at instead of putting down and discrediting people for their struggles. Maybe you, sistersailor and others like her, Should take your “expertise” and use it to help others who are struggling. But the way some have talked in here seems disgusting, however I actually see that these ones are the ones who are either very fake or very bitter.

    1. T. LYN,
      That is a challenge I didn’t think to add; worrying about safety. I’m glad this piece resonated with you!
      – Sarah

  38. I started reading this article with trepidation but it is very lighthearted but informative. I work with the military so understand the details!

  39. My soldier and I just celebrated our 25th anniversary. In less than six months he will be retiring from 25 years of AD Army. The things you posted ring true. At times, I have just cried my eyes out from frustration, then just sucked it up and drove on because he counted on me to keep on keeping on the best that I could. I am thankful that the Army has given us so many awesome memories…

    1. WOW. That was rude. Especially considering she specifically said that single mom’s were AMAZING! Don’t judge – you have not walked in our shoes.

  40. Oh my goodness I guess I’m going to be the devil’s advocate and sacrificial lamb in this blog post. That’s okay. If one person chews on what I have written and finds some clarity, I’ve done what I intended. One question- what would you be doing if you weren’t a military member’s spouse? Would your life be easier? The grass is forever greener. I need to say I am terribly sorry if I appeared to be devaluing or invalidating someone’s existence that’s reading this blog post. Wow! That was never my intent. People get defensive when statements are made that is opposing their opinions. Not this writer, though. She has handled it with perfect grace! My intent is only to speak my perspective, just as the writer did in her post. Sometimes the truth is really ugly (as suggested in the title of the article) especially if it makes someone contemplate their decisions or their perceptions of reality. That can feel really scary. Without sarcasm and in all sincerity, please except my apologies if I offended any of you, especially the writer. I truly appreciate everyone’s perspective on the subject. I felt that this blog post was very generalized to military wives and apparently my response to it appeared generalized as well. This was written and published to the masses and found its way to me via social network. Public, right? Not some VIP room, elitist chat forum. Many people would read and think what I did and never say a word. I normally do that. This time I couldn’t. Forgive me. And to the military husband, thank goodness you value your wife, as all husbands should. But I bet usually wives are not the reason men join, but maybe the reason they stay? Sometimes they are the very reason they choose a different professions too. And someone suggested that I should not call myself a subject matter expert because it’s only based on my own experience. And they are probably right. So why do you feel like this writer’s is compitent to publicly post her opinion? If almost 40 years worth of life experience wearing different military family roles doesn’t gain me a little street credit on this subject, then I don’t think anyone should be called experienced or subject matter expert. After all there’s no Ph.D in this stuff. I’m an ex-wife, by the way- because I was an chronic enabler to a victim. In the end, resentment won. I own that. For all of you that think I need therapy….you are right! But who doesn’t? Lol! Happy Holidays ;)

    1. Thank you for the compliment, sistersailor. I am humbled by all of this conversation. I have really enjoyed reading everyone’s comments, opinions, and discussions. Yes, this was a generalized article. I wrote one a few years ago on this lifestyle (link in post) that was mostly positive, and felt that that was only one side of the equation, so here is the other. In terms of some of your other comments, in my experience, I think that most military spouses are quite resourceful in finding outlets for themselves that create identities outside of “military spouse.”

      A few commenters have said that military spouse is a title to be proud of, and I believe that is true. Generally, I enjoy this lifestyle and what it offers, .and I believe it makes kids and families strong, which was my reasoning behind number 10. I am really proud of my kids for what they can handle; the moves, the transitions, etc. Of course, there are challenges that can sometimes make things very hard.
      But, as you mentioned, sometimes the truth stings a bit, and I have lived this life long enough to feel that there are parts to this lifestyle that are dark and dramatic. Yes, the other side is great romance, but the pendulum swings both ways. Makes life interesting. :)
      – Sarah

  41. I have to say that my first reaction to this article was that I bristled a bit at the negativity. My back ground: my husband enlisted in the Marine Corps. We married 6 years into his career. He served 32 years and I shared the journey with him for 26 of those years. We have 4 grown military brats (being a military brat is a compliment). He has been retired for 8 years having gone from E-1 to O-6. I shared many a conversation with other “non-military friends” defending our wonderful lifestyle as a military family. Please keep in mind that all young families have struggles, military or not. I never felt we should be awarded a badge for, as one friend said, “making it through”. Not coming from a military family myself, I did find out that long term 20 and 30 year military families have many similar characteristics. We are, for the most part, strong, resilient, sacrificing, tolerant, giving, flexible, resourceful, fun-loving, curious, and have good senses of humor. Our families become our neighbors and friends when we are so far away from our homes. I felt like I was at my limit at times but not always. I was tired at times and wanted to be alone to recharge but no more than my non-military friends. My kids had sad times missing their Dad but I believe they came away stronger for it., and more compassionate. I was fortunate enough to have one of those husbands who made his family top priority and almost every time he could be with the kids, he was, not because they needed him but because they needed each other and he really enjoyed the time with them. He did not miss a lot because he made being there possible even if that meant driving 3 hours from a military school at night to be with his 15 yr old celebrating her birthday only to turn around an hour or so later and drive back. Our marriage had tough times but whose doesn’t? Not a day goes by that I don’t thank-God for our lives.
    For those contemplating this life style, speak honestly with each other. Active duty member, give your spouse the real picture. Spouse, if you have been given the real picture, good and not so good, don’t think that you can change it or that it will be different for you. If you feel that the military is for you and your family, be prepared for many honeymoons, as each return from deployment was like a honeymoon. Marvel at all that your children will be exposed to! New cultures, new languages, new places, and new friends. With technology, my children still are as close as ever to friends made along the way, as well. Look toward the positive as much as possible and when you can’t, call that friend and /or hug that child. I am proud to say that one daughter served in the Air Force and another is currently serving in the Marine Corps. I am so proud of the adults they have become and I attribute much of that to the military lifestyle. Personally, I have a large group of friends that I made while we were moving around and I couldn’t imagine life without them. I have held different interesting jobs, learned a new language , finished a degree , and look forward to returning to school now that we are settled. Obviously, the military was a good fit for us.

  42. Great article! I was a Navy wife for 25 years and raised four kids. I can’t tell you how many times I get asked now and back then, “How do you do it?”. It was just my crazy life and I did not know any better. Thanks for touching on some of my thoughts!

  43. 23yrs my husband was Military 17yrs with the Air Force which is how long we’ve been married. With one son. He’s retiring the 1st of January. 6 duty stations, 3 of them state side 3 of them in different countries 7 deployments. It’s been fun, joyful, interesting, heartbreaking, saddening and entertaining. I liked the article it was entertaining, touched on some things that many spouses do, do to help make their lives better or easier, nothing wrong with that. Whether you end up being a stroller pushing, yoga pant wearing going to the gym to help with my routine mom or a gotta work cause we need the duel income to put food on the table mom doesn’t matter we are all the same we each just deal with it differently not wrong, not better, just different.

    Military and the spouses and children ARE special that’s why we have our own subculture. And Yes we do have our own subculture there are just somethings you don’t do in the civilian world that you can do in the military world. Are we offered BAH yes if you live off base. I’ve never once lived off base. I will be in a week and a half when we retire and yes I said we cause I contributed to my husbands career. Yes there is EFMP that’s not always a good thing and they don’t always put you at a base that can deal with your families needs. And while the military does offer some resources to help you they are getting cut back just like any other business in the real world. The military is what it is a business at the end of the day and like any business its bottom line is really all that matters to them, and if in the process when things are going good business wise and there’s money then the families get more programs to help them, when the money isn’t there well you know the rest.
    My medical was never free my husband paid for mine and my sons. And that’s with Tricare Prime so yes dependents do pay even dental insurance is paid by us. I have read some of the responses on this, some made valid points on both sides but they were not entirely right or forthcoming. If I you’re going to pick apart someone’s story and put your version of facts in you might want to make sure someone else can’t argue your point.
    I’ll leave you with this. The military is not for everyone whether your active duty or just the spouse. It’s more about the Rules and Regulations then anything else. Some can cope doing it the best way THEY know how, others never make it to the finish line and you see a lot of divorce. It takes a toll to a certain degree with all the moves, re-enrollments, missed Birthdays, plays, ect. Again we learn to suck it up. Remember these are our views , our opinions is just that. Don’t belittle someone else or disrespect their views or opinion cause they don’t match yours. I give props to both The Military member and Their Family for serving and surviving however best they can God Bless!!

  44. It’s even more stressful when both of you serve no time for anything even if you are both at home, but we manage to struggle through and our 7yr old is proud of us for this

  45. What a fantastic article!! You truly “nailed it”! Today is my and my husband’s 19th anniversary and he’s deployed for the 5th time in 10 years. I love him and do love our life together but it’s an exhausting way of living, especially during deployments. Well done and keep writing!

  46. I do agree in that military spouses feel victimized. I, too am a military spouse, gone through deployments, moves, etc. but I never felt any of those things that she wrote about. I feel like it’s part of my duty to do those “tiring” things. My husband helps with those “tiring” things also because I, too, work 14 hour days. And because we both choose not to make life difficult for us 6-7 years ago, we chose NOT to have children or pets. We decided to WAIT until deployments were at a halt before we decided to have children or even a dog so that this “stress” and “difficulties” that mil spouses always seem to have to let the whole world know about (I see it on my news feed all the time from fellow mil spouses). All I hear in this post is “poor me, my life is so hard. I’m special so I want to make sure everyone knows it.” Big whoop. Congratulations! You have dealt with life, let me give you a big ribbon for it?

    1. Good grief!! How judgmental! Has it occurred to you that life does not deal the same exact cards to each and every person? And this is not about victimhood. Writing about the challenges that face most military families is not the same as complaining or being a victim. Pretending those common challenges don’t there is just that- pretending. The problems I ran into usually had to do with non military families who truly had no understanding of the way we ran our lives and why. Because it is different in many ways, the kinds of articles are useful.

      Lack of understanding can make relationships and interactions far more stressful.

  47. Its not that i dont work first off second im a photographer and third im a disabled vet so had ypu read the entire post youd understand a little more.

  48. Spouses, quit putting yourselves on a damn pedestal. I hope you realize that all of the stuff you write on the Internet is laughable to active duty women. You don’t have it hard. Sure, deployments suck, but mil-mil have it much worse, yet they don’t bitch or put themselves on said pedestal.

  49. My hubby was navy I didn’t class myself as a navy wife I was just a wife, ok my daughter didn’t see her daddy all the time but she knows he loves her. yes some times I hold my husband up when he’s ready to break just like he does me just like any good relationship does And I’m not special or a victim for what my hubby did he is special! and sister sailor I agree with you

  50. First I will say this- if your relationship is defined by one particular thing you have NO relationship -period because Love is a dynamic of multiple things- so now that – that is established – let me say this as an active duty wife- please STOP! I hear everyday of whiny ungrateful, childish relationships- cheating spouses on deployments and at home- by both parties- and no you are NOT special! I joined at 25 – I’ve been in relationships both in the military and out and there is NO difference! Geez people – if everyone is special then no one is! Stop trying to make it as if you are some kind of helpless person, surviving a traumatic lifestyle – or in a relationship that no one else understands- we have 4 main military branches not to include all the other ones – all with spouses , children, families- so do you really all need a freaking elitist page expressing BS hardships- where all you guys really do is bitch about why a person doesn’t give you what you need? Understand that WE as active duty people have to learn to be away from our loved ones- YOU! And deal with it- all life goes on or it doesnt- if this was an open forum about dealing with real life issues about how to be a human being and understanding how to Cope In a long distance relationship I would understand but NO people with their – “politically correct” bullshit. Get over it- life is hard – I’m not bitter- I get laid- I’m married – we own a business- and I have a happy life- so don’t try and cut people down because they don’t feel the same as you- is my whole point- because how does it feel? – just admit that you want to feel special and be a part of something that is why groups like this is created- because I know military wives- they are mostly insecure about their relationships, gossips on forums and complain about their neediness- it’s exhausting for MOST military husbands and I’m happy my husband doesn’t do any of that crap or hang out around women like half of you! Yes I’m saying it- I’m the one who your husband runs to to talk crap about how you complain- whine- gossip- cry because you didn’t get some coach purse or crap like that or why you spent all the money he earned on a deployment to save up for- how you got fat! How you don’t clean or cook or how you don’t put out- how you have no life goals- and just want to decide what to do with “our” money when you don’t work! Or how you cheated and then got mad at them for wanting to leave- or how you don’t have any friends but other bitter military wives- or how your neighbors are always so nosey and talk crap-! Geez life is already hard- be a real wife or husband – stop giving BS titles and be a loving person.

  51. Wow. I am blown away by your need to prove how superior you are to all the military spouses. I have seen my wife a total of 3 out of the last 7 years because of my job in th military. She like most who identify with this are not complaining nor do they think of them selves as some great super spouse. They are humble and strong. I wish that you would take a second and realize how being a bully because of your own failures/misfortunes does no one any good. Im sure your gonna tell us all how happy you are but we know you sad inside and need help. I will pray love into your life and please stop shoving garbage down everyone’s throat. I was raised by a single mother and know both jobs are hard. To the spouses of military men and women I commend you. You are special!

  52. So nadia ur just a spouse right. Let me guess ur one of the ones who wears her husband rank. He has earned that rank not you. And as for me being. Honey ive served my country not just as a spouse but as a soldier. I would still be in if it wasnt for a tour in Afghanistan that tore my knee up. Again i do work. I have my own business which in all honesty is all i can do. There are days i cant stand up without crutches or some kind of stability. Was my health worth fighting for my country. You bet your ass it was. My son can look up at me and tell me mom im proud of you. I make it to all my sons school events plus have a business plus run my house when my husband is not home. I have fought for my freedomand my right. What have you done besides be a spouse who wears her husbands rank. You wanna throw a rank out there try 1sgt. And that was my rank before i got a medical discharge. Id watch who you talk to all high and mighty like that.

  53. Hi everyone-
    I just wanted to let you know that there will be a follow up piece on this topic going up on Friday. :)
    – Sarah

  54. ok..ok tarred and feathered, burn me at the stake- you got me. I’m a monster. I have a different opinion and perspective from which the audience for which this article was intended…and I made the mistake of thinking it was a good idea to share that perspective. I got the point of unraveling purpose for people and so forth. That was good for me to figure out before I collaborate on a tell all book of how the military really is from the service members side. I think somethings shouldn’t be discuss…or share perspective..I intended my initial statement- and actually said that if you feel like this article’s points define your life, you have bigger problems then being a military spouse. But holy heck- that’s somehow turned into me berating and voiding the existence of military spouses! I’ve gone from being called selfish, sad and alone, to how dare you, to acting superior, to crazy. I guess you will never recognize me
    in real life, cause I’ll be holding my new spouse’s hand and smiling-
    I’ll hold the door open for you to walk through, and I will even volunteer to help clean up the grounds at your kids school. I actually had to look up what a “troll” is because I’ve never said a word on one of these things before, and given the beating I’m taken here- won’t again. Cheers again to the writer. Your audience has run off a potential reader. I have felt so much warmth and admiration for many of the ladies and gentleman that shared their joy of the adventure and that are grateful for our blessings. Thanks for praying for my wicked soul ;)

    1. Sister Sailor,
      I have found this conversation fascinating. I do hope you will take a look at the follow up piece I’m working on for Friday.
      – Sarah

  55. The arrogance of some people is bewildering. We are military spouses and it is hard. I am not sure if everyone handles deployments and the constant changes with our lives differently but I know I do not expect anything from anyone. I work 2 jobs and take care of my son on my own. I am grateful to have my family that is willing to help with babysitting when I need it. All I know is I have never asked for any special treatment nor do I ask for pity. Yes I know I have chose to be a military spouse, I just didn’t expect it to be this hard. So all the negative people just need to realize that this post shines a little light on the hardships we all deal with. I still have yet to live on or near a base and I am still new to all of this but I think instead of being so quick to be judgmental why doesn’t someone first take the initiative to be empathetic. Especially if you are or have gone through the same thing.

  56. I think everyone needs to take a big fat chill pill. Yes I am sure military spouses have it hard, we know members have it even more hard. They are just expressing how hard it is, just like we as active duty members express how hard our job is. No harm done doing that. And yes there are some spouses who take the title a little too far, but that doesn’t go for everyone. Not every spouse asks after their husband gets promoted, “What rank are we now?” (Yes I was stationed with a guy that was married to a girl like that.) Not every spouse demands to be talked to at parade rest. And as for the spouses that do that? Pshh, who cares. I served 4 years being married to a man serving as well. My shout out goes to the spouses that were also members married to members balancing everything about the military plus the kids and the husband being away. My husband and I decided no on the kids while we were in, but I do give a big round of applause to those spouses.

  57. I am an active duty mil to mil member. My husband is tdy/deployed 250+ days a year. We have no family help close by and had a premature 29 week son that required a lot of attention….reading this article as a casual read and not reading into it nit picking it apart and attacking people…I laughed as I read this…it is the story of my life. If we ever deviate from the schedule my son is in melt downs. Every time my husband’s leaves or comes home my son always acts out I don’t have time to do much for others but listen and I’m stressed to the max daily.

    That being said I am a SSGT who still manages to do my job, take care of my child and home as well as earn both of my CCAF ‘ S, a bachelor’s and masters. I found this article entertaining and was like yeah story of my life….only difference is I am military and deploy/tdy as well.

  58. I just found it insulting to say that your exaggerating the fact that you need to label your lifestyle as a job- it’s life- yea maybe I was being harsh but geez people – life is life! Like put big girl and boy pants on and buck up- I’m a engineering female 2nd class and this all just sounds like – “please give me attention! I work hard” like it’s your life ie your job and if you want it then yea it’s hard but it’s worth it- I sorry yall don’t agree but I think sistersailor has a point- and I get it some of you guys actually LOVE your spouses but believe me more than most of you guys don’t – and let me see … I’ve been on 2 ships, 3 deployments, countless underway and when I say WOW people need to seriously grow up! Please – or at least understand where active duty spouses are coming from- just sayn- the list at the top just sounds like a normal family- my mom was single parent and I never got her help with homework and most family’s in today’s world are like that- I guess some like to live in a bubble- I’m just a realist.

  59. Loved it! We’re well into the 24th year with the Navy, 11 deployments, more schools and detachments than I can count and you hit the nail on the head! No deployment is alike, no year is alike and no matter how you prepare for any of these changes or challenges, they still come at a price. I’m sharing this one!

  60. I thank each and every person in the armed forces of many, its because of these amazing people we live safe, my heart goes out to their families who have to do what they do, I’ll be honest, I couldn’t do it, I can only imagine what it feels like to wonder when and where they will see their loved ones, and deal with the many questions from the children and have to do both parents jobs. Very much respect to them all xxx hope they all come home safe to their familys xxxxx merry xmas

  61. You all realize that people who have blogs like this can sell advertising and make money based on the amount of traffic it gets. These ladies are brilliant to post generalized articles that will cause all kinds of drama, which eventually turns into cash they can use to help ofset the cost of living since hubby’s paycheck dosen’t cover all the bills. Or buy that new coach purse they want. It’s quite genius actually. And all of you bickering housewifes are just dollars in the bank. You’re drama is some kid’s lunch money! Haha. Amazing. I should do this myself.

    This kind of craziness is the very reason military wives even have a sterotype. If you stop being dependents and start being spouses, then maybe the sterotype will phase out. (?)

  62. Nadia,
    The wives that values the existence of “military assistance” are the kind of wives that does not and should not belong in the military community. The community I would die for as my husband protects it with his life. Do you think you can put a value on being ” true military wife”? For someone who said she is an wife of a serviceman I am disappointed of your point of view. Can you put a value on the worry a wife feels every 530 am when her husband ask her to lock the doors behind him because he is going to work? Is the so called assistance enough to calm a wife down when the husband called earlier saying he will be early for dinner but did not make it til 7 because some equipments are missing and the unit went on lockdown? Tried attending to a sick child alone because husband is deployed? How about a special needs child? How about celebrating birthday just by yourself and the kids because you were deployed overseas and new in area and everyone does not understand a word that comes out of your mouth? And so on. I have been an army wife for 8 years and it was the most challenging,exhausting yet exciting and fulfilling years of my life. Every little success is a huge achievement. I have studied binders with different ranks and branches of the service so during military ball I will be able to know who’s who (oh, you think military ball is just to show your bling? Think again.) It is the time for the queen to make a move because your king only has one move available to him. He won’t advance if you don’t help him. If you assume the role of a military wife, you don’t have a life. Your husband first choice will never be his family as much it will tear his heart apart that choice will always be his country. If you view military paycheck only as monetary, most of us see it as opportunity. Maybe we can scrape some for a camping trip with daddy next 4 day weekend is what you tell the kids. Maybe just to eat out together as family this weekend if daddy does not have staff duty. But then you get crushed because your husband wanted to go to work because he happens to a senior jump master and he realize some junior soldiers did not have enough jumps and could get in trouble if they don’t get into list. Your so disappointed you tell him its not your problem but then he looks at you and tells you “they are my buddies” or it ok they’re bunch of young soldiers and they need help it will be quick and you surrender your case. So, please I do not know how long you had you chance or how did you play you part as a military wife. I only ask do not use a generalize perception towards military wives because you are insulting some of us. We only breath halfway thru everyday even if our husbands are insight because we are fully aware where we will be standing when the tree falls down. You do not have to agree with us but you surely do not want to go against us. Remember in the military, we may not know each other personally but we are a one tight family.

  63. Can I just say that Nesie you sound rediculous and unbelieveable- are you being sarcastic? Because I almost died laughing! Like seriously- WTF?! Omg – I have no words- this is a joke! Some one is seriously delusional- wow!!! – how are you the reason for HIM making rank? Are you sleeping with his leadership?! What are you talking about!! My husband has NEVER claimed he helped me make rank- yes he is proud – but wow – how dare you claim you helped him make rank! You need to STOP! Just STOP! OMG!! Are you people serious?! You disgust me- thank you for basically validating my points- you sound so stupid! He leaves at 530am- EVERYONE WORKS THAT EARLY?! YOU ARE NO DIFFERENT !! Sad just sad

    1. Viciousv…
      I’m writing from a non-military position–I have no connection other than having great respect and appreciation for members and their families. I’m saddened by your comment. In ANY realm (military or civilian), your attitude is obnoxious and bitchy. It’s even MORE upsetting since you are supposed to be part of the same “team” called the Military. Why do you feel such a need to speak in so demeaning a way to her? You lash out at her with such a condescending tone and such viciousness like a child does to a playmate when they don’t have the skills to handle a negative situation that has nothing to do with that playmate.

      Nessie didn’t say she was solely (or even largely) responsible for her spouse’s advancement. If you think a spouse has no role, YOU are the delusional one. In EVERY arena, the spouse can help or hinder advancement of their partner. Also, what is expected of the spouse playing the supportive role can definitely depend on the position or rank! As the wife of the owner’s “right hand man” at my husband’s office, I’m expected to behave certain ways and know certain things that others don’t need to when attending functions. Even though it shouldn’t, my behavior and actions reflect on my husband and CAN have a positive (or negative) impact on his career. This can happen in ALL circles. Additionally, the support (and sacrifices) of a spouse allows the other to focus on what they need to in order to advance in their job. People who don’t credit their supports (particularly spouses) with contributing to their success are selfish, self-absorbed and arrogant, and the idea that an individual is the SOLE determinant of their advancement is, to use your term, delusional. If, for example, hubby adjusted HIS schedule to allow ME to work late, or relocated our family with me, to advance MY career, he’d deserve credit for those contributions. It works both ways. NO ONE gets anywhere in life on their own and as a MEMBER of the military, you of all people should understand and appreciate this team mentality. Until you do, I hope to God you don’t advance up the ranks further because not understanding human nature or how to fully utilize your human resources (recognizing what they can/do contribute) will spell disaster in the field. An effective leader needs to create a team based on these things.

      Something has hardened you and made you unable to show empathy to others and that is sad. Showing compassion and acceptance of each other’s struggles doesn’t make you weak but rather HUMAN.

      1. Oh, just so peope know, when I use CAPS it’s not to yell but put emphasis on words. If I knew how to use italics here, I’d do that instead. :)

      2. For someone who is NOT affiliated with the military, you sure have some strong convictions about a life you have no idea that we lead or the ingorant and arrogant attitudes we deal with on an every day basis. Should I be forgiving? Probably- I am sure that for some of these wives they simply don’t understand and their spouses allow them to develop that sense of entitlement to boost their ego. But once again you would’nt understand. I do not behave like a child. I’m very much a sucessful person, who shows the upmost respect to those around me and it’s good thing you and you hyprocritical self who bashes me for being “Vicious” yet wishes bad on me! Pff! Good thing I could careless less about a person who is no way involved in the military and has no way of understanding a situation where they are being objectified by a person who isnt even standing by their side in times of danger, says or thinks about me. I am a realist and I don’t sugar coat things- I’m sorry my lack of “empathy” for entitled attitudes is offensive, but we are all on here trying to express out contentions about a class of people who think they are better than someone- not from the their own acccomplishments but for the accomplishments of others! I’m the one who is being condemned?! You work side by side your husband- My husband goes to work at his own job and do I deserved credit for him accomplishing somethng at work? If my husband was a doctor and saved lives- should I say that I saved that life also? Should I get that respect for his hard work and dedication because I made the home front and stay at home with the kids, dont work and bitch because I didn’t get preferential treatment because he’s a doctor and is saving the lives of our citizens? I highly doubt any one would dare say those things! but in our institution you have selfish, self-righteous, ingonrant people who feel they should and do! And they even have the nerve to create blogs that encourage such behavior! So please tell me more about how much of a child I am! And btw what children do you know who speak the way i do?! Come on – to demean the luxury of childhood with the adversities of adulthood is ridiculous !

        1. ViciousV,
          From your hostility, I can see that you have missed my points completely. You either didn’t read my WHOLE comment or you wished to see only what you wanted and then warped it. I NEVER wished bad things on you and only referred to your attack (the aggressiveness and tone) on Nessie as childish. My comments are relevant because they apply to ALL walks of life. It’s basic human social behavior and it plays a role in ALL lifestyles. Whether you like it or not, it exists. I don’t claim to be superior to anyone and am trying to take in all the views being expressed. I do look down on rudeness though, and the way you spoke to Nessie was unacceptable in ALL arena’s. It has nothing to do with “sugar coating” but BASIC manners. Asking her if she slept with her husband’s superiors was COMPLETELY obnoxious and lacks class. YOUR own words presented you in a bad light. Please re-read your comment on Dec 4th at 8:28pm.

          You have now chosen to attack me personally just because you are frustrated that people don’t agree with you and I expressed that your personal attack on someone was inappropriate. You’re correct that I don’t know the military realm specifically, but you are wrong about me having no understanding of this blog’s discussion or the social issues involved. This isn’t about military-specific terminology, technical information or regulations. This is about human nature and social issues so my lack of association is irrelevant. I’ve listened to the various points being made here and considered them all. I see the bigger picture BECAUSE I’m “removed”. When I comment, I’m trying to bring a less emotionally charged perspective.

          I get that there are SOME spouses that have taken things too far (that is you’re point isn’t it?) but it happens everywhere, not just the military. You say I couldn’t possibly understand, “…the ignorant and arrogant attitudes we deal with on an every day basis” as if it is military specific. It isn’t. It is just as bad everywhere else. I see it everyday too.

          Try to slow down, and thoroughly read what people actually say. Hot-headed attacks, and statements containing generalizations (re: military spouses) and absolutes aren’t helping “your cause”. You’ll get your point across much more effectively and will sound as intelligent and classy as you are in real life–as I don’t know you, I choose to assume the negative image you’ve portrayed is only due to poor wording and isn’t the real you.

          Please re-read Nessie’s comment and this mini thread slowly and calmly. Each time I’ve re-read it, I get the impression that either English isn’t her 1st language, or she isn’t as good with words which could affect the tone (consider this as you re-read it). She never said she was entitled to special treatment because of her husband’s rank. She wasn’t saying her husband didn’t earn his advancements or that she was the only reason.

          Having a spouse’s support helps considerably in moving forward with one’s dreams and goals. Not everyone has your confidence and black and white outlook. MOST human beings do better at whatever they choose to do with some encouragement and support. That is where the spouse has influence on their partner’s advancement, again, some more than others, and no, not as much as the person’s own efforts.

          To clarify… My husband goes off to his own job too. I don’t “work with him” at the same company if that’s what you thought I was saying. He still works out of town a lot (often with little notice) and longer hours after 20 years in the industry. No, he isn’t gone for months at a time where I worry about his safety, and I don’t have to handle the effects of that (risk & time) on my children like military families. That’s why I DO think military families deserve some extra respect and appreciation. I also think families of police officers and firefighters deserve it too. You have all earned that respect and appreciation and should get it! I understand how my situation is different but the little bit that is similar gives me a taste of your world. In no way have I been a hypocrite as you called me so I’m assuming you meant to use a different word. I never attacked you as a human being and only criticized the words and tone you chose to use.

          As for your comments about children not speaking as you do and my diminishing the beauty of childhood?? What??? My comparison had to do with emotional/social development observations made of children in social settings. There are moments when adults revert back socially and/or emotionally to those childish behaviors and I was doing a comparison in reference to the attack itself (the single post made by you). To attack so cruelly and personally suggests that there could’ve been something other than just her post that made you as angry and belittling as you were and to choose the words you did.

          Like I’ve said in other posts, members of the military community should all be working TOGETHER, no matter which role you play, to support each other and encourage positive changes. If you truly read the posts here, NONE of them are the type of “entitled” chip-on-their-shoulder spouses that people like yourself are so upset by. This seems like a good group to get changes made with, so instead of picking fights with them, get together and change things. Show each other respect and be better people. Set an example for those with the “bad attitudes”. When a person treats others on here with disrespect, they are just as bad or worse than the whining, sulking, self-entitled you dislike so much.

          Please try to see the original blog for what it really is–a list of some of the challenges faced by the families of military members so that outsiders like myself can be enlightened and understanding. The people writing in support of it are just sharing some of their experiences. They’re not asking for special treatment (other than maybe patience and compassion) and aren’t whining. The blog doesn’t encourage the bad behavior some others have talked about.

          1. Outsider,
            I appreciate what you are saying to Vv as to how she comes across in her wording. However, it does not change the validity of her points. Nessie’s post- “I have studied binders with different ranks and branches of the service so during military ball I will be able to know who’s who (oh, you think military ball is just to show your bling? Think again.) It is the time for the queen to make a move because your king only has one move available to him. He won’t advance if you don’t help him.”

            Now we can say she is talking about being supportive in the background- but that is NOT what Nessie said. She said, “He won’t advance if you don’t help him.” Can you see where this might be perceived as delusional thinking or maybe she really is “helping” him in a not so savory way?

            To those of us that take pride in earning our promotions and appreciate our loved one’s support (but also give that same support to our loved ones) this can be insulting. It’s like a person earning a post-secondary degree and their spouse trying to claim they are responsible for the accomplishment. I would never take credit for my spouse’s accomplishments- I will root, be biggest fan, support the activity, but take credit- NEVER.

            Some folks reading this are really missing what this blog is intended to do. Now, the writer did intend to shed some light on her daily life and its possible differences. However, that is not how it was written, how it was addressed (the recipient addressed would seem to be “outsiders like you), but in reality the audience is in the same “subculture” as the writer and looking for validity. Also, it was written in absolutes and plurals as if to be a voice of all military wives. While the writer may have originally intended a heart felt list, the message will and is being twisted into a plat-formed agenda by those needing validation for their suffering.

            I don’t want “outsiders” like you believing military spouses should be felt sorry for and giving them the false idea that they should have the same privileges as the person that took the oath. Some people do really believe they are entitled and should be privileged because they married a military service member. The reality is simply, you serve your family, spouse and self in what you do everyday as a stay home mom. It is not the country, you are serving when you marry a military member and stay home to raise your kids. Vv’s message (as I understood it)- is for wives to stop pretending their are “taking one for the team” and expecting people to put them on a pedestal for being a stay at home mom in a military family. If they do that, it demeans what they are actually doing for their marriage and their family. It would put them in the same category as prostitutes that some military men visit in foreign ports. We certainly don’t go around thanking them for their service, do we?

          2. Thank you, Anonymous December 21, 2014, 6:04 pm, for your respectful reply. I am hearing what you are saying. This blog and the ensuing discussion is really educating me. I appreciate being allowed to see into your world.

      3. “I have studied binders with different ranks and branches of the service so during military ball I will be able to know who’s who (oh, you think military ball is just to show your bling? Think again.) It is the time for the queen to make a move because your king only has one move available to him. He won’t advance if you don’t help him.”

        Sounds like that is exactly what she is saying to me.

        1. As a Marine wife of 25 years to a Mustanger of 32 years in the Marine Corps I can relate to some of these young wives of servicemen. I worked in training management noting that most young enlisted men were married to very young souther or simple ladies. This account 3rd for the fact that they did not have a clue what a soldier’s rank was or where to look for it on uniforms. Don’t jump to conclusions that’s why they wanted to make points with their husband’s CO by acting demure.

  64. Sounds like my 20 year widowhood starting when my daughter was four years old and lost her dad. But he NEVER came home. A tragic, tragic death, explain that to your baby girl.

  65. You forgot a couple of “elements” to being a military spouse. 1. Base Housing- things have changed A LOT since most housing as gone privatized. But, those that have lived & still live in “older” base housing know what I’m talking about. We had been living in housing (4 plex/townhouses) & had a huge cockroach problem. In order to get CE to come out & spray everyone in the 4 plex had to agree. The Lady in the end unit refused. ofcourse, she was the reason for the cockroach problem. So, when they FINALLY pcs’d- the new family was made aware of the BUG issue- they agreed to be sprayed & no more cockroaches! & how about those YARD INSPECTIONS???? Hard enough when your spouse is home- but, when they are gone- Well, I got written up!! & leaving your porch lite on after dark, your garden hose hooked up after October- Yep! GUILTY!! How about those thin walls- & living next to the flightline or range! Something we get used to gunfire & jet noice! 2. The Commissary- gotta love tipping the baggers! Clipping coupons to cover the surcharge (that’s DFAS for tax). Maneuvering to carts on a payday. Getting Rammed in the ankles by the blessed retirees & knowing how to negotiate the zigzag lines that our civilian counterparts only experience on Black Friday. Loving a certain item only to realize that they no longer stock it (one time good deal till it’s gone)! 3. The “GATE”- a military base gives a whole new meaning to “Gated Community”!! How many times have I been stuck trying to get on/off base & the GATE is closed for some sort of Security Measure??? TONS!! Trying to get friends & family on base to see you- well, that takes SKILLS (& a clean record)!! I could go on- I grew up a Military Brat & My Mom was a Military Wife, My Aunt was a Military Wife & I was not only a Military Wife- But, I am Retired Military too (& I could write on hell of a BLOG on that!!) Keep fighting the Good Fight Sisters of the Struggle & remember… YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!

  66. My husband has been gone for 8 months and I appreciate the honesty that was shared in this post. It is very difficult being a mom on my own right now, but that homecoming will come and we will once again cherish our time together as a family before he leaves again!

  67. I have to say again, this article is not saying that military wives are superior, it’s just an eye opener to what this life is like. But it is “different” than that of a non military life. One of the biggest emotional struggles I faced I compared to our marriage before the military and during the military. It is VERY different to say goodbye to your husband (or wife) in the morning going to a civilian job than it is to not see him in the morning and wonder almost every waking moment if/when you will hear from him, if he’s ok, if the news reports are true and if he’s even alive! That is a whole different emotional struggle than that of a single parent or civilian family. But those lives also come with their challenges and there’s nothing wrong with anyone sharing what their life is like because there is always someone that will benefit from their experiences or advice. So stop being so self centered and putting people down and try being empathetic to the struggles that one faces. Not everyone is the same.

  68. Sistersailor, your question about “would your life be different if your weren’t s military spouse?” YES ma’am it would. I’ve spent half my marriage before the military and half my marriage during his service and life is VERY different, he is different, our kids are different and I am different. Before service he didn’t drop to the floor because of a loud bang, he didn’t have respirator problems before his exposures, he didn’t have the injury included with the feast he would die because he couldn’t move, he didn’t have nightmares that caused him to attack me in his sleep causing him guilt even though I explained I will be understanding too any of his struggles, we didn’t go camping in the mountains on the 4th of July to avoid the noise, I would have had to teach my children they couldn’t play loudly in the house for a while because daddy’s heart would start pounding and his blood pressure would go through the roof, our all gets easier over time BUT I wouldn’t trade these experiences for anything because I’ve learned from them how to be more empathetic, how to help calm him, how to teach my children strength they didn’t know they had (although I wish I could have taken away their pain). And to a child this is very difficult because they just don’t understand, but we teach them through tears and happiness how too be more thankful for things, not just for a members service but for life in general. No one had said they are victims of these experiences, just that this life comes with struggles as does every life. AND you get stronger as you learn to cope but it doesn’t happen in the beginning.

    And MilSpouse, “most” if us military spouses feel like it’s part of our duty to do those “tiring” things, but it doesn’t mean it’s not hard and it doesn’t mean we wouldn’t like a break sometimes or some understanding from people that make life harder.

  69. Ma’am (@Tlyn) I do understand, of course it’s hard and when traumatic things happen to the member- it changes everything! I too have service connected disabilities, not like what your spouse is experiencing- but I can appreciate how challenging everyday would be for you and your family. Please don’t think I’m telling people not share or seek encouragement. I hope everyone gets their needs met in that area…I was just stating that it is one thing to acknowledge the hardships and a completely different thing to loose yourself to it. To define your life by it and become a victim. This article was written by one person, and this person has stated that it was what she was feeling and the place she had been or was at when writing it- however the voice in which she was writing was if it was on behalf of all military wives. Not to mention speaking in absolutes, which to me, was disturbing. I don’t want to encourage people to wallow in their hardship. Some folks don’t have anything close to what’s going on in your family. They are just tired of doing everything and handling things on their own. Which honestly, even if they were not married with children- they would still have to do! Maybe just for themselves, but they would still have to do it. My message was to those that are loosing themselves to the hardship of the military lifestyle. And honestly- sometimes theses folks behave badly because of it. Whether it be to their military member, yelling at the gate guards because they didn’t salute them and they are a “insert officers rank” wife, road rage in parking lots, gossiping and being petty, excluding people that may need the same thing from them- that they so desperately seek from blogs like these. However they act out, those of us that don’t like military spouses having a stereotype, want them to stop behaving this way. So- I was blunt about it. Feelings get hurt. People don’t read things fully and jump to conclusions. I don’t think I’ll be hanging around here much, but it has been fascinating. I can’t stop reading! Lol

    I wish you and yours peace you so rightly deserve. Bless your spouse for his service. I appreciate you.

  70. Thank you also sistersailor. A lot of your comments were in absolute as well and I think that’s why people were so offended. Nothing is absolute for more than one person because everyone is different, just hope everyone keeps that in mind. I to have encountered those that abuse and create a bad rep for this type of group, but blogs and groups like these tend to bring more and more encouragement and understanding for those in the world of military life and if we cautiously encourage those struggling and influence them with the lessons we’ve learned through our own lives there will slowly be less “losing themselves” and more building strengths through others. It definitely sounds like some have had bad experiences with this particular group but more often than not change happens with more positive words. I’ve never seen successful change in someone through harsh words or put downs (wether intended that way or not) but through what you could call positive manipulation (sounds funny but true). Just like we’ve seen you de-escalate and your recent post to me is more respectful than your first post. I know I could have left this alone at this point but I can’t help but assume you still have influence in other military lives so maybe this can come in handy someday.

  71. Sincerly, I’m bewildered at how offended people are getting. Some people read it and totally understand and then others read it and complete misinterpret everything. It’s extremes, it seems. I’m not savvy to the posting/forum/blog community, but I’m not sure how you can put a message out (even with the most honerable attempt) and people all over- read it differently. How can you accomplish anything this way? I actually read the blog post maybe 15 times to see if I misunderstood the writer. I even had my husband read it and asked him if I was completely wrong. My coworkers read it and got the same thing I did….I even had my friend read my comments to make sure I was stating my message clearly- and still I’m a dragon lady gone crazy to some people…lol. I’m still trying to figure who I’m putting down in here…if anything I’m trying to encourage folks to lift up themselves by reflecting on what is going on inside of themselves and fix it or at least try to get perspective on feeling like the writers absolutes
    defines their life… And I never said to anyone how they should do it…get back in touch with themselves- that path is different for everyone. I just hope they do it, that’s all. Whatever they need to fix themselves, do it. And to stop the bad behaviors, because people see them (oh boy do they) and they are judging all of us by military folk by what they see. That is an absolute I’m comfortable with stating.

  72. Okay, I’ll break this down in my perspective. Nothing is meant in a rude way so please, please don’t take it like that but I’m going to be blunt.

    First I’ll break down your first post:
    -“I have to consider myself a subject matter expert on this topic. I have been on all sides of this military triangle. I have been the child left behind (by military Father), I have been the girlfriend/spouse left behind and lastly, I have been the military member, parent and spouse that has done the leaving.”…. you are not an expert on anyone life except your own and clearly stated you have had many experiences that have prepared you for this life that actually gave you an advantage too be stronger than those who are experiencing military life for the first time as a spouse. Me as an example had never even talked to a service member that I knew of, but over time my world is filled with them.
    -“It has also been my experience that this group (please forgive me here..) is the most self proclaimed victimized, entitled, coddled, needy group of hollow individuals that I personally have encountered.”…. harsh, rude and cruel words. (I’ll admit this statement started a fire in me.)
    -“having to wait for their gaggle of yoga pants- stroller pushing- latte sipping- asses to cross the street so that I can get to work on time.”…. choice of words here is just offensive and cruel.
    -“You are not special. Your kids are not special. The person that puts country in front of all things personal, is very special. Your kids have the same needs as any other child. Guess WHAT!? All kids will face harsh times, rejection, awkwardness fitting in, will have to learn to adjust to changes.”…. first off anyone who manages to survive through rough times is special. Secondly, these kids have VERY different needs than other kids. The emotional trauma a child experiences from an absent parent in the line of duty is incredibly hard especially when they have not reached a developmental point to comprehend this. I’m sure you have had to see your child cry and asked if you or your spouse will ever come home or worse ask if you died cause you couldn’t call for several days. Never did I have to experience that with a child before this, it rips your heart out. I can’t tell you how many times after I comforted them that I hid and balled because of the pain they felt. And yes all kids experience rejection, etc., but these kids may be sitting in class and see a picture of a soldier and burst out in tears and other kids laugh at them because they don’t know what it’s like to fear the death off your parent. But none of this is an excuse for bad parenting, that goes for any lifestyle.
    And almost everybody knows that a police officer or firefighter and there family have very similar struggles but what sets us apart is that they get to lay in their spouses arms most nights, if something happens to them there is someone stateside to notify you right away and there’s really no loss of communication such as a morter taking down out the only communication around, and if they get injured, they can get in their car and go see them as opposed to waiting days to hear of an injury and another few days to be flown home to a hospital. That does set a military spouse apart.

    Now let me break down the blog:
    1.We are always at our limit.
    In reality, deployment separation causes an emotional strain like no other. That being said any moment can be a break down, even if you don’t cry and put on a fake smile inside you are still at your limit and at times wonder how on earth your gonna get through the day. I remember sitting at my job at a call center and get a call from a soldier that just got home and explained how thankful he was too leave when he did because of the suicide bomber that just hit and it just so happened too be where my husband was, 3 days of no contact when he told me his next call time was 2 days ago. Over time you get stronger and move past obstacles but it tends to take longer when your limit is stretched.

    2. Leave us alone.
    This may be over worded but I can’t tell you how many times family or friends asked me to babysit or something right after I got done crying cause when my husband finally got to Skype me I saw in the background where the last morter blew out the side of the building he worked in or when I overheard another soldier tell him how lucky he was that the last morter that hit was 40ft from my husband and luckily it was a dud. I had my best friend and her 3 kids live with me for 3 weeks and I financially supported them. The only way she could get to see them was with me because their father trusted me. As well as my brother asking me to transport his kids every weekend or their mother would not let them see him. If he went to pick them up she would call the police. Yes there’s a lot of people around me with messed up lives, but they never thought to stopped and think about me or my kids. Heaven forbid I say no, then I was selfish monster the whole family attacked.

    3. We are TIRED.
    Maybe a better example could have been used here but you read above how stressful it was. And yes single parents are amazing, the difference is they are more used to it, not saying it’s easier but when you get 17 days notice and you have to learn all of a sudden how to do it all when you’ve never done it before, it’s a stressful mess at first. Then throw in the 2 months it took me to learn how to sleep alone and remember when I woke up scared that he was gone that he’s deployed. However I do thinks it’s still harder to be a single parent and I too this day, thank my husband for all his help.

    4. To deal with 1,2, and 3, we have a system.
    As I started above its a stressful mess at first with while lot of crying and goodbyes but then you have to figure out a system quickly and THEN that all changes again when he returns, but it never goes back to the way it was before, now it’s another new system in which he is stressed about to. Not to mention getting used to him telling all the time when he got back because of his partial hearing loss and the ringing in his ears, the kids just thought he was mad at them all the time.

    5. We have to handle the kids’ sadness.
    Here’s another curveball for mom. Everything’s going great, system is working well, and then, one of your children remembers he hasn’t seen his dad in two weeks. Or a month. Or three. And he cries. Or he acts out. And we have no idea what to say…because we have no idea when he is returning. We try various cute tricks: every day a Hershey’s Kiss from daddy, a calendar, or a countdown necklace. But it’s all just a sad reminder that someone is missing….this one I left the definition in because it is spot on, this is what these children feel like and we try all sorts of things to help. Not to mention the heart wrenching cries when you just don’t know what to say. Or I’ll never forget the look on their face as their daddy walked away crying and they felt abandoned. Children are still learning that the world doesn’t revolve around them so they still internalize things. They blame themselves for why daddy left sometimes And you have too assure them it’s not why. Even reading to them his orders so they can see the president telling him to go. I bet you sistersailor have experienced things like this.

    6. We need friends.
    This is so true. Just someone you sit and listen so you can get out your feelings so you don’t keep stuffing them, that’s not healthy. And especially those new to the military life who don’t have any supporters yet and haven’t figured out there’s help out there.

    7. Our husbands miss a lot.
    Even when they are “home.” There’s so much truth to this as well, or even yourself deploying, you miss things you can never get back. And when they are home, there never really home all the time. Not just physically but mentally. As I am laying here writing this response my husband is having a nightmare kicking his feet around in our bed and gaping for air, he’s not even home in his dreams.

    8. The military “controls” more than you think.
    We plan family vacations and weddings around these schedules as well, and often, they get canceled or postponed. Not too mention losing money on planned trips or a yearly training being on your anniversary every year. Frustrating, especially when everyone else around you gets to take their vacations when they want and tells you will about their wonderful trips and you’re just hoping too get a phone call our text saying happy anniversary.

    9. Our marriages struggle.
    The distance, the stress, the overworked and exhausted husbands, the PTSD, or worse, the missed opportunities for husband/wife time all take a toll. And really important the lack of physical touch. Even after those few magically days when he returns sometimes it stops, you do your best to understand why he doesn’t touch you a lot when he gets home or he’s scared to cuddle with you in bed because of nightmares, it hurts! Our does emotional damage no matter what and its another things you have to learn to cope with. I struggled with thinking I wasnt good enough for him when he got back, but over time we got through this too. And I know you yourself sistersailor have felt alone one time or another sleeping by yourself.

    10. Yes, it’s way harder than we thought…but most of us wouldn’t give it up.
    This is also very true! As you’ve read above we have been through a lot but we MADE it, there were mistakes, frustrations, even anger, but we learned from it and eventually figured it out. Not everyone is cut out to be a military spouse and can’t handle it. That being said I do think it takes a special person too handle it, a selfLESS, humble, strong, multitasking, quick learning and VERY understanding person to be a part of a soldiers life!

    1. TLYN, so very well written, and with far more patience than I found myself able to muster.

  73. I’m not exactly sure how I stumbled across this post but as I am reading this I am sitting in my mother-in-laws kitchen having just packed my entire house up and sent all my personal belongings to Belgium where we will be living for the next 3 yrs. My navy husband of 13 yrs., my 6 kids and I came here for thanksgiving and some family time before moving overseas again…for the third time. We will be living out of suitcases and in a hotel for potentially the next two months. And even when we do move into a house there’s no guarantee our things will be there. As I have prepared for this and now going through it there are so many things that I do because it’s what needs to get done. I don’t often think about how hard it is…it is my life and I roll w/ it. But when I stopped and read this it made me stop and think of the magnitude of my current situation. So much of this is true. In no way does it mean other people don’t struggle or have difficult lives, living situations, or separations or make light of other difficult situations. What it does do is give a voice to our struggles…some of the comments on hear make me sad…can we not just support each other? Regardless of our situations can’t we just say “hear, hear, that’s gotta be tough”. Whether it’s a military family moving w/ a special needs kid while dad/mom is deployed or some one who just lost their job and has to move his/her family across the country to live w/ family until he finds a new one. I think it’s sad that we can’t just express what our heart is feeling w/o someone throwing it in our face. It is my life, I did chose it and I love it…I love being the woman that gets to support my husband, military or not.

  74. Thank you for this well written perspective of being a military wife. I’m totally able to relate to all of these points.
    Sistersailor, From your post, it seems you have never really lived the civilian life (father military, you military, and husband military). Maybe it is through those eyes that you cannot understand how special the military life is (and when I say special, I mean unique). I grew up with both of my parents at home, in the same house, with the same group of schoolmates until I left for college. Now I have been an Army wife for 23 years and raised/raising three children and the differences are just astounding. Our fourth grader has changed schools six times and has gone to a German school not knowing a soul or the language, our son in college wasn’t able to come home on the weekends to visit or do laundry because we were thousands of miles away, my husband left for a 15 month deployment when our daughter was a week old, and left again two weeks after another child died. Those are just a few of the very many situations that none of my civilian friends and families have ever had to deal with. I have never felt like the victim, never was coddled, and never felt entitled. This has simply been our life. Don’t try to minimize the very uniqueness of our lives and our children’s lives. We are not better than any other family situation, just very different. I honestly think it is a great disservice to not recognize that.

    1. Apparently, you can’t read. Sistersailor worked in the private sector for a long time. Also, Sistersailor’s points are not a blanket response to all military spouses, as she specifically states (again, try reading it all and understanding!!!). There are spouses in the military that are choosing to be a victim, and think that they have entitlement to the success of their spouse’s careers! What a fucking crock!!!
      I would never assume that my Active Duty partner’s career achievements were because of me, and she would never do that with me and my career. How can you be so obtuse!?!?! If you don’t understand the word Obtuse, then use a dictionary.

  75. I spent many years as a military spouse. My first and current husband are both retired Marines and I am very proud and grateful to both of them.
    I have spent the greater part of this morning reading this and have felt many different emotions. I can say that there are different types of military spouses, just as there are in any marriage or relationship. Differences is what makes a world.
    If you have never been a milspouse then no amount of discussion will ever define how life is and there’s also no cookie cutter version to give. I can say that it was the toughest and most wonderful part of my life. I miss talking to others who REALLY do understand where you’re coming from and family that you become a part of because sometimes that’s the only way you survive.
    I also would never take the accomplishments of my husband’s as my own, but I will say that it is in part a spouses accomplishment as well. When a military member is deployed the last thing they need is to worry about the home front. That job falls on us, we have to be strong so they can stay strong and focused. I never actually wore the uniform but I worked like hell to support what it stands for!

  76. 1) What I’m say- where everyone goes crazy- is actually prefaced with the verbage that changes the statement from an absolute- to a select group amongst your “subculture”- “this group of women and men that feel that this piece of literature has coined their life has bigger problems than that of being a military spouse.”

    coin (koin)
    A mode of expression considered standard: Two-word verbs are valid linguistic coin in the 20th century

    Reference: For the American Heritage Dictionary definition: coin. (n.d.) The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. (2003). Retrieved December 3 2014 from

    Many folks understand it- a lot of folks just want to think I’m talking about every spouse! But how on earth could I do that- look how different you all are!

    Maybe if I was smarter (like someone suggested) I would have said “defines their life”, NOT meaning those who sympathize or relate, but those who are DEFINED by their hardship and let themselves become victim to their circumstance. Circumstance that they actively took part in creating. This can be very tempting thing to do, as I have to remind myself of this often.

    IF this doesn’t apply to YOU (as I have no way of knowing each individuals life that reads this) then, it DOESN’T. I think that we all know people who let this happen to them, and those are the individuals for whom I am referring.

    2) my “expertise” is on my own life in these three roles. Military daughter, wife, member. * Someone said maybe I can’t relate because I have never been in a civilian lifestyle. We actually had a 12 year break as a civilian family. This is when my children did the bulk of their growing up. Before I married my service member, I was a single mom for three years. But-You are right it is my own life. And I am in a different branch of service than your spouse, so NO I’m not gonna know the in and outs of the others. I can only imagine the differences!

    3)Your voice in this article- THE WRITER- wrote on behalf of ALL military wives and in absolutes. On basic things- not the really dark traumatic stuff many of you have faced as families. Basic family stuff. How can she write that way and none of ya’ll (except for quite a few people here actually) get aggravated with her? I’m not bashing the writer! Please don’t think that- she did a great job! I understood her intent and of course could relate- but like I’ve been told so many times now- you are an expert in your own life…..and no one should speak on behalf of so many- in absolutes- when there are spouses out there behaving really badly in the name of their hardship as a military spouse. There are entire websites dedicated to exploiting these individuals. Many people know what I’m talking about here.

    4) Yoga pants is a stereotype of the cliqish, petty, gossiping military spouse that likes to put themselves anywhere and everywhere they shouldn’t be. They want to take credit for their spouse’s accomplishments and wear (not share- but wear) the rank of their partner, who had to do hard physical and mental things to earn it. Things that many military spouses could never handle. I get the part about support…but I think my
    view differs from folks in here on this and I’m not gonna get into it anymore. I do wear yoga pants too…lol! There are a few others but this is the group I’ve come in most contact with….Many people know what I’m talking about here. It was harsh, but so is the behavior.

    I can’t keep defending myself. Please let this be enough. I just don’t want the amazing lot of you folks thinking I don’t get it. I do, I really do.

  77. I am reading all of these comments and because I am TRULY a single parent and a 20 year army brat I feel like I can comment on some of these remarks. I remember growing up as a child laying in bed at night crying because the next horn goes off might be my mother and brother and I going back to the US and never seeing my father again. But after living at the largest military installation for the last 30 years of my life I have seen many militarywives that feel like they deserve things. Like calling her first sergeant because they’re mad at their husband or wanting to be served first or best because of their husbands rank and the security that they do have as far as medical Insurance that I by the way pay over $500 a month for just my daughter and myself and if their paycheck is late they’re not going to get evicted because they didn’t have the rent that day or fired with out warning. and I see why some people get upset because unfortunately like everywhere there’s always people willing to take advantage of the system and what the offers are out there for them. Unfortunately I feel like a lot of us have seen the ugly side of what they feel like is there right to have because there husband chose to join the military. So unfortunately we don’t see the pride that they have for their husband and the family sacrifices we see a selfish person it’s demanding that they are more important than anybody else

    1. Thank you for providing a well (and respectfully) written perspective that I think was what many of the other “negative” comments were intending to express. It shows that there are some spouses that do not handle military life well. Everyone needs to remember that some behaviors are a coping strategy (as inappropriate as they may be) to hide their struggle. Yes, some are just plain self-absorbed and rotten people, but many are probably really needing support or guidance, or are possibly just trying to “fit in”.

  78. So nadia question. Are u saying i dont deserve my disability check for serving my country???? Cuz apparently thats not good enough for you. Im sorry but maybe youll remember this post when your husband gets out… But then again what do i no i was only a 35F in the army.

  79. Well, I keep trying to respond to this, but I am having difficulty expressing how true this article has been to my life over the past several months while my husband has been deployed. I work full time in a civilian job, and have 2 small children. I have been at my limit, I have required a system to hold everything together, I have been SO VERY TIRED, I have counted on the support of friends and family, etc, etc. For the first time, really, I had a child who truly understood that Daddy was leaving and wouldn’t be home for a long time. After reading every point, I was like “yeah! She gets it!”

    To address some other comments, though, during this time I have never felt victimized. I have felt beyond tired, yes, but I have felt pride more than anything else. I am proud of my husband for being where he is, doing what he does. I do not pretend to wear his rank – I have my own job that I have worked hard to for – but, I am proud to say I am his wife. I am proud of how well I have kept everything together in his absence, and I feel strong, resilient. I am proud of myself for (after crumbling a few times and having a couple of good cries) picking up the pieces when everything has fallen apart and being able to put those pieces back together as well as I could. And that husband I am so proud of? He is proud of me as well! He says that it is comforting and important for him to know that while he’s away he doesn’t have to worry about things back here, because he knows I’ve got this. He is able to put his full concentration into the job at hand knowing that everything’s taken care of at home.

    None of this makes me feel special – I do not feel that I am better than, more important than, or more deserving than any other person out there. I do feel that I belong to a very special community, though. I (at literally any time of the day) have at least a dozen women I can count on to be here to help out in a moment’s notice. I wouldn’t have been able to hold everything together so well without these women. None of them have been life long friends that I’ve known since elementary school, high school, or even college. Some of them I haven’t known for more than a couple of months. They are all simply women who have been exactly in my shoes, and so understand every one of these points as well. We unite over shared experiences. Before moving to be with my then boyfriend/now husband, I had friends. We would get together for dinner or drinks, commiserate over stupid things guys say/do, our jobs, etc. I still have many of these women in my life, and I love them dearly – however – they do not and never will understand my day to day life as well as the amazing women I have had the privilege of knowing since becoming a part of this special community. Individually, I do not feel I am special. As a group, though, I think we are damn special.

    Okay, so it’s become apparent that I just cannot respond to this without becoming a rambling mess. I’m going to blame it on the fact that I am just so very tired :) My husband will be “home” next week, and I am practically buzzing with excitement. I thank you (the writer) for being able to so eloquently and perfectly describe how I often feel as the wife of a soldier, working full time, trying to make life as normal as possible for my children while their father is away. I can tell that you, too, have been here, and it’s so nice to know that another person out there has shared my experiences, and is a part of this really amazing community.

  80. Hi Sarah!
    Just wanted to lend my support from a fellow military wife! My husband and I are Canadian and hubby has been in the army ( and is still serving ) for 29 years. I hear you on every single point!
    We are best friends and it is physically painful to be apart from each other. Like every other military wife out there we suck it up and do what needs to be done. One day at a time and some days I had to take it minute by minute. Many of the military members here have said countless times the spouses at home have a much harder job keeping the household going and managing everything. Not excluding the fact that not knowing what’s going on in theatre can play some amazing cool head games. :/

  81. Male military spouse, So much for rising above throwing around insults, huh! Sorry, but I never engage in a debate if you can’t be engaging or considerate.

  82. Wow people.are rude! Truth is though It’s just as hsrd if not harder to be a single mom who has to work all the time & never see her kids just to barely be able to pay the bills! No father even part time, no money magically coming in w/out U actually having to lift a finger or miss Christmas morning w/ the kids because U have a job, or not being able to afford gifts foe them for Christmas @ all because a roof over their heads & food in their bellies comes 1st. My SO is Military so I get it. Were havjng our 1st child together in about a week, but am I “special” or deserve a pat kn the back foe stayjng home now w/ my kids when he’s @ work & paying all the bills? No I don’t cause I have been a single.mother & no one gave a shit then. Still though people don’t have to be ao nasty.

  83. Hi. I’m an “outsider”. My only ties to military life is a friend from public school who serves with the Canadian Military (which is GROSSLY underfunded) and an acquaintance who is a military spouse. I’ve read the various comments and felt compelled to make some of my own. What a great article/blog! It really gives an outsider like me insight into some of the challenges military [wives] navigate. Some of it can even apply to MY life with a child with special medical needs, medical issues of my own, a second (thankfully healthy) child, and what I refer to as “single mom season”. I find my own situation difficult but I can’t imagine doing it in a military situation where I have to uproot my family an unknown number of times and where I’d always be worried about my spouse’s life and/or the potential fallout from them being placed in harm’s way. I have the upmost respect for military families. Thank you to the author for being honest and admitting that you (military spouses as a group) sometimes struggle. As a mom, who sees you as a source of inspiration and example of strength, it is helpful to see what challenges you often face and how you are “human” while overcoming those.

    I don’t understand why there were negative comments. I was shocked and very disturbed to see that the most cold and callous comments were from actual military personel & fellow spouses! The article/blog was not a “Boo hoo, feel sorry for us” statement. It just explained some of the coping strategies and the reasoning behind not always being as spontaneous or energetic as others. People ask me how I “do it” refering to caring for my child (Type 1 diabetes) and I say, “I don’t really have a choice so I just do it.” That doesn’t mean I don’t sometimes need to have a little “pitty party”. We all need to recognize and/or release our feelings so that we can keep on going. It’s called “venting” not “whining” and is a heathy and useful technique for coping (also helps lower blood pressure, tee hee).

    To those who say, “suck it up”, I say, “shame on you.” I can only imagine the horrors you have seen and I applaud your bravery and courage to pick up and carry on but for goodness sake, show some compassion! You weren’t “being honest” or doling out “tough love”, you were being cold and cruel. If there are some who need more support than others, you should feel sad for them or help them, not abuse them. No, most spouses probably haven’t been or won’t be in life threatening situations, or see the horrific things you have/will. Yes, things could always be worse but why be the source of more pain by trivializing someone’s struggles? Something I’ve observed which applies to all of society, is that those who are the “toughest”, most cruel and least compassionate are usually putting on a show to compensate for inadequacies or emotional scars they are too weak or scared to face and address. Either that, or they use it as a coping technique which eventually stops being effective. You accuse military [wives] of whining for attention but your coldness and bravado tells me that you are the ones looking for attention. You are NOT stronger than those who admit they are struggling but WEAKER because you hide from the truth. You use bullying to hide the fact that you are scarred/damaged emotionally. YOU are the ones that need to “get it together”.

    As for the comments about choosing the life & knowing what they were buying into… I suspect most military spouses/partners have somewhat of a general idea what it is like before becoming a military spouse. However, there are probably many who didn’t FULLY understand what they were getting into or who thought they were up for the challenge and later learned that they weren’t. That can’t be a very easy position to be in. It must be nice, for those criticizing, to just easily choose to change their life as if it’s a simple “black & white with no gray” situation. That is not the “norm” for most people, or at least I hope it isn’t.

    PLEASE show one another the respect and support that we, non-military, should be showing you. Your world contains enough stress without having one of “your own” attacking. Without military personel or their support systems (families in particular), we in North America, would not and will not live the blessed lives we do.

  84. A military spouse is the single most underrated job not on the National Defense Authorization Act year-to-year, for over 27, hell almost 28 years my spouse supported our family in ways I can’t describe or compensate for but I know that even as I tear-up writing this passage she has absolutely been the one constant that our kids could depend on, that I could depend on, Things were not always smooth and uneventful but they were always manageable and covered with love and devotion, she is “The air I breathe” and without her unyielding support I know I could not been as successful in my military career as I was. So I say thank you to all the military spouses and a special thanks to my Sofia, “Luv-you-like-a-fat-kid-luv’s-cake!”

  85. Your list is spooky accurate. My husband and I have been married for 29 years last June and although I was only a few months old when my father’s ship, HMCS Columbia, came in [his last time coming home] and I’ve never personally attended a military wedding [just saw mom and dad’s pictures], I vividly remember the Change of Command in Winnipeg’s North side because my now 27 year old son was 4 months old, it was raining, my husband had him covered partially by his rain coat and when it came time for the RSM’s to give their speeches, Joshua was wailing. He earned a t-shirt that had printed on the front “World’s youngest RSM”, on the back “You can call me Sir”. We’ve seen a fair bit of the country and across the pond and every visit and move was a big adventure to our two sons. For everything we’ve been through, I wouldn’t change a thing. And yes, we’re still very happily married! And we’ve got two adorable toddler grandsons. The three year old says his grandpa is a “Happy Soldier’, the bad ones are “Mad Soldiers”. Way too perceptive for his little years.

  86. As a new milspouse with 2 kids, our service members are severely underpaid. It’s was never my choice to be a stay at home mom(although I embrace it). I try to strong and grounded since the wonderful navy( no sarcasm) relocated us to the middle of nowhere, (over 2500 miles away from family and the only place I have ever called home)where the locals are unemployed by 15%. At the end of the day we deserve pats on our backs and allowed to wear a hat of pride. We are trying to piece together a life they we envisioned when our spouse signed those contracts but was dealt a different reality. We all can agree to disagree. We may not have to worry about a roof over our head but we still have bills and kids to provide for. And although civilians have to somewhat fend for themselves they don’t have to worry about there children’s parent being shipped only God knows where and we (including the servicemember) most of the time has no idea how dangerous the next job is. When it comes down to single parent civilians… Honestly that’s a personal problem. I was raised by a single parent. Lived through it but my mom had family support. Most of us are all alone. Just thank us and appreciate us for keeping our service members determined and focused so we don’t have to go back in time have men and women involuntarly drafted off. Not being asked to be placed on a pedastal but just say thank you and keep it moving.

  87. That, by far, is the best article I have read on Military wives and what we go through in quite some time. It was simple to the point without asking for pity.
    I wouldn’t change one thing on your list, Sarah.
    Well done!

  88. I always say”I don’t know how my daughter does it” I give her so much credit. Four girls, works, goes to school and takes care of everything else. She was also military not just a wife.

  89. Great post! I have been an Army wife for 5 1/2 years now. I also served in the Navy for 4 years. I am a stay at home mom (I do this because my husband and I agreed for me to stay at home until all of our children start school). It is not always peaches and lollipops. Sometimes I want to walk out that door and scream, but I don’t.

    I would totally get a job, but living in Germany is certainly difficult and also childcare is through the roof! $1400 per month… no thanks. So I am working on school. In fact I am graduating tomorrow with my Bachelors. Pretty proud of myself… I mean it only took 7 years. Took a few breaks with PCS, deployment, TDYs, and new member additions… but hey I did it!

    Military life is NOT easy. Life isn’t easy. We all have ups and downs. Ins and outs. But we get through it right? Absolutely! We are wonderful, strong-willed, patient (kinda) & like minded individuals… I say individuals instead of women because NOT all spouses are women. :)

  90. How are you arguing with an article that is written as an opinion piece from the perspective of the author? If you don’t agree then you don’t share the same perspective, but to be so offended by it is weird! Get over it!! People have different experiences! This article represents the author’s experiences and, well, you can’t really argue with that! It’s her story and it seems to resonate with many military spouses. We aren’t victims, she didn’t say that. We are special because our life, our issues, etc are unique to our situations. Special doesn’t mean we are better than anyone else! Geez.

  91. And number 11 when your spouse finally retires, you start all over trying to make a home and schedule when they are always around and want to be a part of everything they missed. It sounds great but after 20+ years of that way of life, you start all over creating a new normal.

  92. I couldn’t relate much to this article, but that doesn’t mean it is wrong. This article was written by a spouse who is living her life her way, just like every single one of us is. Her thoughts and feelings are different than mine and that is wonderful. Variety is important, differing opinions and life experience lead to new ideas. At times things are hard for everyone, even if my difficult moments are few and far between it doesn’t make me “better” or “stronger” it just simply means we are different people. I try to treat every person I encounter with dignity and respect. I truly believe that how you treat others speaks volumes about who you are but says nothing about who they are.

    We all want the same things at the end of the day, for our loved one to come home whole and healthy. If wot gets some people through the separation is feeling special, why begrudge them that. Each of us are special in our way, we each bring something different to the table.

    Ladies, gentlemen. Just my two cents. You can take it with however many grains of salt you wish.

  93. All i can say, some military wives loves to complain. They always act like they are entitle to everything. Really annoying, nobody say its gonna be easy, but geez… just do what you need to do and stop complaining and just be thankful for all the benefits you getting from the military. Some of them expects more, and it irritates me. BHA, BAS, what else you want? If thats not enough maybe some of you that likes to complain finds a better paying job. Just be grateful. Everyone else going through tough times, but thats life. Deal with it! Just do what you think is best for your family and who cares what other says.

    1. Comments like these boil my blood. You do realize you have the right to speak your mind because our military made YOUR freedom possible? Did you also know that even with BAH and BAS, most military families live below the poverty line? Our insurance isn’t free, granted we pay a discounted premium, but still not free. I have never complained about being a military wife, I knew what I married into, so not all of us sit around and complain. Please, remember, not all thoughts need a voice.

      1. Agreed, I would not trade my life for anything, I and the wife of a retired navy chief. People thing we are given everything, it is not like that we pay for our stuff, it comes out of the paycheck, the GI bill is not free. Health care is not free. People need to check their facts before the speak. Especially when they don’t even know how to speak. Obviously MEH is quite uneducated.

  94. I am a navy wife, stay at home mom if 3. And I believe that our military service members don’t get paid enough for the amount of hours and amount of work that they put actually put in. I’m not complaining because we live a comfortable life- just stating a fact. I also know a lot of spouses who would like to work, but on top of trying to find a job, child care is NOT cheap. If you work a $10.00/hr job and have 2+ kids, you’ll basically be working to pay for childcare.

    1. I agree even today, when we’re were active duty, I worked too and we were still below the poverty line when we had our son, we were eligible for,food stamps, we did not get them, only WIC for two years. Still today military people do not get paid comparable to civilians of the same job.

  95. One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between two “wolves” inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith. ”The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”. The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

    Which one are you feeding?

  96. this conversation tread is a trip. This post was simply about some of the things a military spouse experiences. Not whether or not we are capable of finding a job. Nadia you took a comment a ran with it and turned this into “Drama!” I am a navy wife and a mother of 2 little boys. I stay at home because I choose to. Not because I’m lazy. I am mother and father to my boys. So before u even start keep your freakin comments to yourself because you have created enough drama from a simple post. My guess is you are the gossip queen of your community or command!! But thanks for the entertainment this morning

  97. I’m a military wife of 22 years. Our kids are grown but sadly WE are no longer together. The time away, the stress, and “service before self” was too much to come back from. We held it together until our kids were “old enough” but that didn’t make the decision to end it any easier. I was a proud military wife; I’m still proud but this is a sad reality. I’m crying as I type this; it’s been just over a year and his job has now PCS’d him across the country. You can’t help who you love but I wouldn’t marry military again.

  98. You ppl make me so mad! It’s a privilege to be a military all have it no harder than anyone else in life..I was serving and didn’t get to see my kids while working 2 full time jobs and now my children served and they are currently military have it way better than some ppl that have NO health care and/can’t find jobs, or people who never see there families cause they have to work 2-3 jobs just to put a roof over their head and food on the table and still don’t get medical, dental or anything, be grateful that you have that privilege! Yes, it’s hard I know that but you don’t have to demand or expect ppl to give you reconization for that.

  99. It’s everyone’s right to disagree with the author but this was her perspective on her life. It seems to me Sister has a personal problem with military wives. Why else would her comments towards hem have been so spiteful and stereotypical.

    I get there’s a rift between military spouses and service women but you’re just angry aren’t you. I’m a miltary wife obviously and I don’t think I’m special, nor do I think I’m a victim. I’ve been known to have a latte every now and then, I’ve also been know to outrun my husband’s military friends in the PRT.

    If your being looked at by wives maybe it has nothing to do with the fact that you’re getting head of think line privileges and the commissary. Maybe they think you’re one of the women that target the married guy on the ship. Or maybe your one of the girls that try to cause problems when
    A husband calls home from a port. You know then ones who are as loud as they can be in the background saying things like get off the phone with you wife and get back in bed with me.

    Maybe she just had a female military members come to her house completely disrespect her and her friends by hitting on their husbands in front of them and taking off her shirt. True story. Female military members at least here are “known” for continually trying to cause issues.

    Maybe they thought you got pregnant to keep from deploying. I’ve personally saw that one too.

    Point being every group has issues and your condescending post about yoga pants, lattes and bad behavior you look ignorant and jealous.

  100. ViciousV

    “Yes I’m saying it- I’m the one who your husband runs to to talk crap about how you complain- whine-

    You said you were a 2nd class eginneer my husband is an EN. So I’m saying it, what I’ve heard from him and his friends is how they have to all the work becuase the women in agang can’t hack it.

    1. Oh go cry me a river- you ARE the prime example of A BITTER BITCH- I earn my paycheck dealing with sexist jerks- dealing with my own problems- and im NOT in A-GANG- FYI- I do work and believe me Im not going to entertain someone wife who has no idea what I do or what he does for that matter. The same man you hear bitch about some female at work- is the same man bitching about you on deployment and probably screwing that chick who took off his shirt! Im sorry you have a weak husband who invited a rachet chick to a party- obviously it is HIM who is the problem not some chick! weak women always blame the women -grow up you CHOSE this man! – you chose the man who pays for hookers in Thailand, or every port for that matter- and believe me I HAVE NO DESIRE TO CATCH HERPES OR AIDS FROM SOME IDIOT WHO PAYS FOR HOOKERS! I have no problem getting laid (men are easy)- oh im sorry am i being inappropriate? believe me i have seen it all- men and women- so dont dare accuse ALL of us active duty women of trying to screw your man! Pssh half of them are ugly & fat and DIRTY!! How is that attractive! remember on deployments – i know his business- NOT by choice! Sistersailor is trying to give you prespective! you dont get it or you dont want want to make BS accusations so that YOU (the ones in it for the paycheck and fake gossipy high school friends) can keep on crying about how hard life is! GROW UP we live in a world where GENOCIDE STILL EXISTS! do you not live in the world?! no you live in outter space where all you have to worry about is when the 1st and 15th is and who is “trying” to sleep with your man! HA! maybe if you stopped being “dependapotomus” and actually be a wife! stop trying to be special- becuase most of you will end up divorced anyway and then what are you?! no-one- you depend on the military man to do all your stuff – GET A LIFE! stop being a freaking LEACH. just STOP! for some of the military wives out there- who love their husbands and are actually in it for love – i applaud your sacrifices becuase we as active duty women do the exact same when we are away from our husbands! and guess what we cant go home and bitch about what we are feeling- and we have to work with all these men who are horny and looking for a pity party and believe me- on deployments i dont ever even remember able to cry after a while because you have to suck it up! you ignorant women you have no clue to what we go through! love Vicious V

  101. @layla- you just described exactly the person she was talking about…no sense of self value so they are insecure in themselves and their marriages. Looking for fellow pitty partners. You’ve got it twisted around- it’s the mil spouse you described that’s angry and jealous. I am a mil wife and would never treat a female member how you are suggesting. Disgusting.

  102. Nadia, I am not a military wife. However, I have some amazing friends who are. I have to ask you, what happens when you are in a state with no family members and haven’t been there very long. If you are at a new job, with your husband out of the country and the school calls to say that you child is sick and needs to be picked up? Hhmmm, do you ignore the sick child, or leave the new job? Most employers won’t tolerate that for long. And let’s not forget the moving around regularly. That’s not exactly conducive to keeping a job.

    My last statement to you is that from what I’ve seen, is that these families are generally (not always) more compassionate to others than you are because they see what the government does to military families. These men and women lay down their lives day and night every day to try and ensure our safety for very little pay that can be taken away from them when ever the government sees fit. Why don’t you try thinking about the situation as a whole before making rude ignorant blanket comments about people for whom you obviously have no compassion.


  104. If you can stick it, there’s nothing more exciting, and painful and difficult. My friends were horrified that I, over seventy, would drive 900 miles alone, but compared to driving from Florida to California with three children trying to kill each other in the back seat, it was a leisurely afternoon drive. It’s worth it.

  105. You ladies are awesome! I don’t think I could do it….legitimately. I told my husband that if he was going into the military I would have had to had prayed very long and hard about marrying him. I do not do well on my own at all. There should be an awesome military wife ceremony for you all! I am in awe with respect for you ladies! Keep up the great work!

  106. Hahaha! After reading the snarky posts from Nadia what everyone is failing to realize is she is just just trying to get under the skin of those that opt to stay home with their kids. She claims to have been a mil spouse for years but yet her hubby is only a ssgt? Nope, sorry if he’s only a staff then he hasn’t been in for long AT ALL and no way has she been thru several deployments! She’s just bitter because she HAS to work, not because she wants to or likes it. She can rant all she likes about how she’s so successful, but no way sister! You’re just a bitter person who wishes she had what others have. Argue all you like Nadia, scream from the top of your lungs your “opinion” but you will never convince me otherwise. I’ve been the wife of an AD Air Force Member for 24 years and I know better! lmao!
    Also, higher pay for having a spouse is not the spouses money, Nadia you dingbat, it’s the AD service members money! Bwahaha!

  107. This is a great article! It is a difficult path but there is so much good about it. My husband has been enlisted and now officer and due to careful budgeting we have always been blessed! I homeschool all 4 of our healthy and thriving children and count myself blessed to have that luxury. Even with budget cuts we have never thought of being done with the military. We are so happy to stand with others in service to our free country! It is a true blessing to laugh, cry and go crazy together with our battle buddies during deployments! I will never regret the day he enlisted! I loved him then and I love him even more now! Don’t ever feel sorry for us but if we have a few hairs out of place or some extra grey just give us a hug and a prayer! Love, wife of a soldier!

  108. An additional issue relates to activated and Active Duty Guardsmen. Those families are often not prepared for the deployments, possible moving, nor are most of them aware of how the ‘military system’ runs because it has not been a ‘full time’ thing for them. Insurance changes, everything about how they do life changes! They often do not have the support of other military families if they are not near a large base.
    I have been so impressed with how I have seen these women and families navigate through these times.
    Please, please when you are around and know these families, dont just ask how they are doing, tell them you have 2 hours, or a Saturday afternoon free etc, and tell them you want to finish a specific project or job or errand for them. Dont say call if you need me. Tell them what you are willing to do…. trouble shoot an appliance breakdown, fix a fence, mow the lawn, run a couple loads of laundry so they can go to an appt or out for coffee….. Think of something and offer to do it because their minds are so full of all that needs to be done and maintained and how they are going to take care of it all that it can be overwhelming to even suggest to you or ask you to do something.

    1. It would help if these spouses and their service members would prepare in advance for the hardships they might face. You can’t treat the Guard like it’s just a gun club that your spouse belongs to. You must face the fact that if needed they will be called to deploy and have plans in place for when they do. I assume you’re accepting the paycheck, in doing so
      you need to prepare for the consequences.

      1. I absolutely agree with you Anonymous! They should prepare for the hardships they might face because it is almost a guarantee there will be a deployment at some point in time. I think most are aware and do take steps to prepare. What is expected and anticipated, and what reality is are often vastly different. It doesn’t matter how much you prepare, how much you learn in advance, being part of active duty military is a culture in itself, and so in reality there are job, role, and cultural changes that are different for reservists than for active duty members.
        I dont want to excuse or make light of either groups adjustments. I just know from the many that I have talked to, that despite all their preparing, the actual experience can be like a deer in the headlights experience. Its sort of like trying to explain to someone who has never give birth what the whole labor and delivery process is like with all the physical, and emotional stuff that goes along with it. They may think the really get it and know whats coming but you dont really really get it til you actually do it.
        I just believe that when families are in the midst of 2-3 major life changing events all at the same time, stress levels go beyond reasonable levels and extra support is just something we should all be on the lookout to give.
        That goes for any life changes. We should be doing the same things for those who have gone through a death in the family, a move and a career change or divorce etc all within a short time span. There are physical, social, mental, emotional and spiritual repercussions for each person in the family unit towards each of the major changes going on. That’s a lot of change and challenge. A little added outside support cant hurt, and sometimes its the smallest thing you do to assist that feels like a ton of bricks being lifted off someone’s back.
        If we could all just remember a stressful time in our own lives when someone came alongside without us having to ask for help, maybe we could start thinking about ways to pay it forward to those around us we see in stressful situations, military or not.

  109. This is to the core AWESOME! I was a Marine “brat” who was enriched by my father’s career in the Maribes. My mother was the PERFECT Marine wife!!! I’m have not always given her the recognition she justly deserved!!! Now she knows my heart and how much I hold her in awe for all she did. 2 kids and we were kept in line!!! More articles of this quality needs to be made available for the public to UNDERSTAND … it’s not easy being a military family but, in most cases, you won’t find a better quality of people!!!

  110. I was raised in a military family and married a career Marine. We did 31 years in the Marines and I don’t have enough fingers and toes to count the number of times we moved. In all of our duty stations, east coast, west coast or Japan I was able to work full time and built a career and a retirement. I was always a little jealous of the spouses who stayed home and had what I’ve often heard called “the wife life”. They actually joked about their lives and spent most of their days, if children were in school, going out, shopping, fun outings, girl-trips, etc. I was never included in their “wife life” fun as they referred to me as “the Wage Earner”. I believe they looked down on me despite the fact that our income was twice what theirs was. Military spouses do have more challenges then most civilian wife’s but it’s not near the struggle outlined above, especially for those who live “the wife life”. It’s not impossible to have a career and move every other year. I believe women marrying into the military expect that they’ll be able to stay home and raise their children, as has been done for centuries. Military families have a strong sense of family and raise some of the most intelligent, well-behaved children you’ll ever meet. I do have a problem with the excess I see some wives engaging in…partying when husbands deployed, buying expensive clothing and jewelry, taking trips, etc. instead of doing all of that, I saved most of my 31 years of Federal and civilian income, put our daughter through a private college, paid cash for the two Cadillacs in my driveway, created a college fund for our granddaughter, and helped my husband in our preparation for retirement. We’re retired now, but not really. He works and I’m taking care of some business before looking again for full time work. Not because I need to work, as I can now live “the wife life” guilt free, but because I’m not a freeloader. Even staying home, cleaning the house, cooking, and doing all the normal housewife duties doesn’t give me what I need. I still want to be a productive member of society. Not so much so I can “have” but more so that I can give to others. I get tired of the complaining as today’s spouses have it much better now than my mother or my grandmother’s generations had it. Deployments are 6-9 months now, in WWII our sons went to war for years, years not months, leaving spouses to raise their children on their own, with half the pay, non of the military spouse support systems they have now, and living in substandard housing while NOT being able to FaceTime with their deployed spouse every other night. I can tell you some stories that would curl your toes about some of what my mother went through during the Vietnam Conflict and the UNTREATED and unrecognized PTSD that my father came back with. My father was spit on when he came home. Again, I’m not saying it’s easy, but if you decide to stay home instead of working outside the home then don’t complain about your economic situation, get a job! One last thing, I raised my daughter as a working mom. She is and always has been a wonderful person. You CAN raise great children and have a career, you just need to have the will to do it. Please, stop treating our lives as if we are special or deserve special treatment because our spouses serve, our spouses are special because they serve, we just get to enjoy the ride with them!

  111. One more short thing…my mother raised 5 children on my fathers SNCO pay. We NEVER went without, never. I’m sure my parents did but not us kids. I NEVER heard my mother complain, I did hear her crying sometimes at night in her room, but never in front of us. She was amazing, still is. She also never thought or expressed that she thought she deserved anything special for her role as a military spouse. She would take praise for being a good mother, a loving and supporting wife, a very capable financial manager, a part time father, and a full time friend to the other wives. But she would have been all these things even
    if Dad were not in the military. Perhaps we should all strive to be more like her…..I sure did!

  112. The ten things about Military Wives are so true. My husband spent 24 years in the Army and we spent 11 months at each of our duty station except for overseas duty. Then he is out in the fields or TDY, there you become mom and dad to the children. But inspite of how you keep your family together, things has a way of working out. My husband and I were blessed to have celebrate our 50th Anniversary (25 July 2013) and he died 26 Nov 2013. Today my children have fond memories of traveling from one Army base to another. As for me I love those memories and if I could do it again with my husband I would.

  113. Wow. I started reading this from my own Brat point of view. I was so glad that someone was giving the civilian population an idea of what my mom went through. My mom never worked while my dad was in the Air Force. I am so glad she didn’t. I can’t imagine who would have taken care of me and my brother when my dad was TDY. Where would she have worked when we lived in Japan or the Philippines? And as for dependent pay or money for off base housing, well, that was more of an incentive to get people to live off base. Everyone wanted to live on base overseas. It was the best. I don’t remember any other kind of pay at all. By the time we went from temporary housing to other temporary housing to permanent base housing, got settled in school and unpacked, my dad got orders to move again. Mom getting a job? I can’t imagine. But more than anything, civilian life is a breeze compared to military life. I thought of this article as an opportunity to let civilians know how different and difficult military life can be. I was really taken aback by the military people slamming each other over an article intended to give some insight. No military wife or military Brat I’ve know ever complained about hardship the way civilians do. Talk about entitled! And most civilian wives move only to get a bigger, nicer house in a nicer neighborhood. Military life is different. It just is. Many Brats grew up knowing their own lives as well as the lives of their parent or parents could be targeted. Many have experienced acts of terrorism first hand. Many have lost a parent to war, conflict, terrorism. Military wives as well as any person, can use some understanding from everyone that life is difficult at times and this article attempts to point that out. Everyone who comments with vitriolic, obnoxious comments need to understand that these are just comments. Not complete life stories. You have no idea what other outside factors contribute to a person’s life experiences, trials and tribulations.

  114. Gave everything up for the love of my life. Support given 100%, going to Afghanistan, coming back after a few tours and wants to be free, not married anymore….goodbye my love, goodbye my life, goodbye my everything..

  115. Great article that will give friends and family of military spouses an insight into the unique challenges of military families. THANK YOU!

    Wow, I was shocked to see snarky, negative and mean-spirited tirades in the comment section. We, military spouses, are looking for support, understanding and love, which I believe was the intent of the article.

    Thank you again for bringing a voice to the unsung heroes, the military families!

  116. I’ve been thinking a lot about all of your comments. And yes, I am reading every single one. I’m hoping to do some follow up pieces on military spouse life in general. Maybe more conversation is what we all need.
    – Sarah

  117. Sarah…just wanted to this my support in here. .I grew up a BRAT. .Both parents were dad was an army pilot my mom was an AF officer. In college (Auburn) (I am educated…sort of it was in Alabama ;) ) I enlisted in the Army… For many years Many Many deployments. .. I married an AF Crew Chief… and because my children were not rubber and resilant like many think I made the decision to get out. With over 10 years in a job I loved. Now I am am dreaded dependapotamus a bx battle cruiser. I am defined by my spouses ssn.
    I loved your article it was spot on. I am not a victim I made this choice..I work for 12 dollars an hour with an masters because we are stationed overseas, and base agencies love taking advantage of the fact there are very few jobs. Its a professional job in my career field.
    While I do not complain, I can recognise that we are a unique subculture. We have issues that no one else faces and we have communities like this to share our issues. This is our space, if you don’t agree why bash? Why feel the need to belittle people? I am so confused why some are so angry.
    I am very thankful that I am married to an amazing airman. He is amazing at work and he has worked his way up the ladder. He will be the 1st to tell you that he is able to do this because I am making sure all is smooth at home. This is our reality, and many others too. I do not get him promoted, but I do make sure that he is able to focus on work and not worry at home. As he is getting ready to deploy to the stans for his 5th deployment (not to mention 3 koreas) I can so relate to this list. It does not get easier, sometimes I think it gets harder.
    I have been there, I have left to deploy I have been on both sides and I can tell you being the one at home SUCKS. For ME it was so much easier to focus on your job. Not the heartbreak of our youngest crying for dad night after night.
    Being a spouse is hard, we are allowed to vent. We are not victims, we do not suck off our spouses, a successful relationship is a partnership.
    There are crappy stuck up spouses. There are crappy stuck up AD females too. There are spouses that abuse their husband rank and there are AD females who abuse their rank …or are slugs….or sham…or suck up a little to much…or are sick call rangers…and you know what…There are AMAZING spouses who are always there for you and somehow make this crap look easy and there are AMAZING AD females who make me so proud to bleed green.
    Stop with the generalisations. We are people with flaws. This list speaks for me…thank you…if it does not speak for you ok but bashing…really tacky….bless your heart

  118. Worked full time as an elementary teacher while raising 3 children while husband was a marine for 20 years. We were fortunate that my husband did 19 of his 20 years at the same base. It was his home base, but he was deployed the majority of the time.. He was never gone longer than 6 months at a time, so we didn’t have to move or give up our home. and kids were able to stay in schools and scouts, church ,sports etc. Friends moved away and in a few years they were back and we picked up our friendships where we left off. I went through 3 pregnancies ( all C-sections) alone, the death of both my parents and a sister, and a fire in our home all over the years while he was deployed.. We survived on letters and one phone moral call a month. I thank the Marine Corps for making me a strong , independent person.

  119. My son and his wife came home last year from 8 years in the Marines. I am totally in awe of my DIL. She is amazing! Your article is such a great description of her life. When our son joined the Marines, we were in for a very rude awakening…..I don’t know how many times I said “I had no idea that in the military……..” I wish everyone in the United States had a true realization of the real sacrifices both the Marine/Soldier and the family give to keep us free. They would be amazed!

  120. Sarah,
    Thank you for your article. It was very well written. I think it’s sad that some people become bitter, angry …. and write words that are hurtful to others. You put an article out there that brings light to a subject that some people just don’t understand. It’s unfortunate that you received such negativity from certain individuals. I don’t get it. My husband retired from the military a few years ago. He gave 23 years of his life …not including ROTC in college. My three boys and I have lived the life of dependents. It was a choice my husband and I made before we were married. Neither one of us regret it. Many times when an article like this comes out some people hear it as a complaint. I know and most people understand that is NOT what it is. It is to help others understand where we come from. To just state…. this is who we are because many don’t know. It is a different world and a different life from what most civilians live. I know you were just stating what the world of the military spouse/parent is all about. Yes, we are civilians…. but first we are military dependents. If we live on base… we have to follow the rules given to the active duty member. I have enough stories from my own life and those of my friends that could fill a book. Some would bring tears to your eyes both from heartache and laughter. The thought that you find out your husband has been killed in a helicopter crash from a news channel and not a military member is terrible. The knowledge that when you arrive at a base, not knowing a soul…. there will be more than a few neighbors ready to help you with anything. I do mean anything. I have done it and had it done for me. It is a difficult life at times but I am proud to be a military spouse. I’m proud of my husband and the other men and women that served beside him. I pray people will be more sensitive to the fact that when we say its hard…. it is not saying the civilian spouses lives aren’t. Yes, there is freedom of speech and we, as Americans have that privilege because of those who serve and have served. We can’t make those of you who are bitter or angry speak kind words. However, it would be nice if you would. Both of my grandmothers and my mother told me … if you can’t say something nice. Don’t say anything at all.

  121. Love your article and you are correct. Even though the military has improved by hiring people to do the work that used to fall on the spouse, there are still many stresses. Kudos to all the folks who do sustain successful marriages throughtout a military career. It is never easy. As a military spouse, the best thing I ever did happened when my husband was a battilion comander at a rapid deployment unit. I had to support 4 company comander spouses. Each one, not only held a full time job but also recently had a child or were expecting. As many of you know, pressure on those spouses during deproyments increases 10 fold and more. I was determined that their MAIN responsibility was to support themselves and their family and not to pick up the slack or hold ” teas or dinners”. Many a time I had to butt heads with the wives of generals who seemed to enjoy ” wearing the rank of their military partner. Bring it on, I did not care. My objective was to take care of my ladies. No soldier can concentrate on his job if constantly worried about the family left behind. After a year of deployment, all came back, praise God, to spouses who were mentally healthy. Military spouses are very strong but some things that were asked of them ,to support or volunteer for ,were ridiculous and only added to their stress. I used to laugh out loud every month when the command would hold ceremonies and boast about how much money the army saved by volunteer service! Never mentioned how many marriages were lost or the state of the mental health of some of those volunteers. I am happy to hear that the army has finally recognized this and now there are paid staff to do some of the tasks that were handed to the spouses. After a 21 year career, I see the changes but there are still miles to go. With the world in a dangerous state, our soldiers are still out there doing what they do better than anyone else. Families are still left behind. Remember these families and continue to pray for our troops. This still is the greatest country , thank a soldier if you agree. And also thank the families for their sacrifices too. My heart will forever be greatful.

  122. Our situation was the reverse. I am the Army veteran, Desert Storm, and my husband was the stay at home dad. He did amazingly well while I was deployed. He took our daughter shopping and got our oldest son’s ear pierced. He received assistance from local neighbors and from the school district. They helped him with babysitting and more. The only thing he had trouble factoring in was my use of our money while being deployed. He was and is an amazing husband and dad.

  123. Nadia I only read a few of you post and scrolled through the rest you have pissed me off I’m a military wife and gab up a good job to move to Cyprus with my husband I have been here 3 years and applied for every job going but it was who you know what you know I’m not a Sponger at all and can’t wait to work again but your comments have upset me so cynical!!!!

  124. Spouses,

    I know that it can be very difficult staying home with the children while your military member is away. I say spouses, because I know several husbands who is the stay at home parent and the wife is the deployable military member. This is your opportune time to educate yourself. Retirement for your spouse is on the horizon and that will be your time to start your career. Figure out what you want to be, study for your dream career and be prepared when it is time for your spouse to retire.

  125. You certainly do not speak for all military spouses. Your article paints all military spouses as strung out martyrs, and that’s just simply not the case.
    We trade for all the struggles free healthcare, free recreation, reduced priced goods and services, and the added security of many squadron resources, among other things.
    Genuine single parents do not reap the benefits of additional parental income, where it applies. Genuine single parents often don’t have the enormous life insurance payouts that the military ‘part time single parents’ do, or the various support systems the military offers.

    – spouse of an AF Spec Op.

  126. Thanks so much for writing this. I was having a really bad day and took solace in what you wrote. I am not alone. Thank you, thank you thank you!!!

  127. This was a great read! I have a friend who I am actually about to interview for my next #MomCrushMonday post. When we graduated high school, she was an aspiring model and she started doing photography. She got married and is now a military wive with two daughters and just had twin boys. She started up her photography again and is doing free photo shoots for military families. I thought it was great and actually came across your blog trying to get insight on the things that military moms/families go through as inspiration for questions to ask her. I loved this post!

  128. I can see where you are coming from on this. Both my husband and myself are enlisted and it can be really rough at times. We fight, we struggle, but ultimately we survive and strive on because our love is strengthened by it. We are happy to be pregnant with our first little one (who is having fun in his personal jungle gym right now). And to all those out there who are mil-to-mil also, we will survive!

  129. Nadia…I am a military spouse retired after twenty two and a half years. A year after my husband joined we found out I was pregnant with our first. Six months later I lay in a military hospital for six weeks. Delivered only to find I had an incurable kidney disease. My husband stayed with me through it all. I could NOT work. It is debilitating and strength zapping, this disease. I would have given anything to have been able to work. Many other military wives I know did only to be uprooted two or three years later.
    Nadia stick a sock in it. You have probably had a wonderful, healthy life. Not all of us can work. I have had over thirty surgeries due to my illness and worked when I could only to end up in the hospital with some illness a co-worker came to work with. Broaden your thinking. Your responses have irritated and aggravated me to no end.

  130. This is spot on! I grew up with a dad in the army and I married a Navy guy. So I thought I was prepared for deployments and lots of long days..moving..etc… I hope this sheds a light to people how hard and rewarding and proud we are to be a military family!

  131. Oh please, single parents have it so much harder. They dont get free counseling, a community full of support and their spouses back after 10 months. Dont act like you have it the worst, lots of times the older kids have to pick up the slack and raise the other kids because the parents are too busy having a pity party. Newsflash we think it sucks too so dont forget about that we are just children. Maybe not all spouses do this, but my parents for sure. So I think this is silly.

  132. I am shocked by the comments that are on this site. It saddens me that rather than supporting each other people are bashing each other.

  133. I have alot of respect for military families. The guy I dated before my husband went to boot camp. When he returned I could tell he was different. Things didnt work out between us. However, I realized I would not be fit for a military wife.

  134. These really hit home. Spent much time without my husband. He did 23 years and 1 day in the navy. It was not always easy, I would not trade a single day. Our first 10 years of marriage he was at sea for 4 years and 11 months. Here we are 27 years later. Life is good.

  135. All of these are so very true. I’ve been married to my soldier husband for 13 years. It has definitely had its ups and downs but like you said, I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

  136. My daughter was Military, married a Military man. She ended up getting pregnant, 6 months later he was deployed. Worked full time, went to school full time, took care of the baby. It was hard on her. My Partner’s Father was Air Force for 20 years and they moved so much he was scared to make any friends because he knew they would move. He went to 13 schools while his Dad was in the Military. I don,t care what anyone say’s, being a Mother is a full time job. I saw how hard my Mother worked (3 Jobs) just so we could have a rof over our head and some food on the table. I want to thank all the Military wives for all they sacrifice, and the men whose wife is in the Military. Thanks for all that you do. Live in Omaha so see alot from Bellevue, Offet
    Air Force Base.

  137. I so needed to see and read this today. I get so sick of hearing g oh your husband is military you guys have it so good. I wanna slap them . But reason for needing this today is because we just got news that we will be moving soon but not where we hoped but it’s good for his career so we will all suck it up and over come and move on . But it really is a hard thing to keep your shit together for your family when all you wanna do is fall apart . Thanks for the great read . Put a smile on my face and reminded me that it’s ok.

  138. ARMY brat. Traveled around the world with my mom and two brothers, following and supporting my dad. We hand project housing not fancy houses. We a . Station wagon i grew up in traveling for days or weeks t ok new duty stations. I went to 5 different high schools because we were relocated so often. Never grew up knowing my own grandparents or family. When dad came home we it his purple heart he was egged and spit ononv trash thrown at him.We still have the shrapnel a ft long they pulled out of his legs. We didn’t have fb, cell phones or laptops. Wec record tape cassette and mailed them back In forth. It took werks. He DID three or four tours. Came ho mn e a different person but Pray for our soldiers. He went on to become a Great CMS before the army medicated home out after 28 1/2 years. Would even give him his 30 he gave his life for this country. It was a slow miserable kill and all us kids got to witness his broken heart and loss of authority, respect and honor. This new Army is not what we were raised in. Men joined the ARMY because they love the country and it was an honor to protect. Not for instant credit ratings, qualifying for outrageous vehicles, bounces. No disrespect just a few things ppl might want to know about the old Army and how they suffered and all have forgotten.

  139. Bottom line, ya’ll are called dependapotamous for a reason…. Get over it. Get a life.

  140. i have military friend wives and I have to say this article made me sick. You see, I’m a single mom and I have to do all those things anyway regardless of a man being in my life or not. My army wife friend gets it right when she looks at me and says “how do you do it?” At least you have men in your life on some level and you definitely have the income of both parties. So this was a joke to me. I’m sorry.

    1. To all the commenters who are saying that I am comparing this article to single parent hood and saying that military spouses have it harder:
      I am in no way saying my life (or military spouse life) is harder than single parent hood. In fact, on number three, I even made a point to say how amazing single parents are because they face different challenges!. Military spouses do have help, at points. I agree! I’m not at all saying one lifestyle is harder/more challenging than another. This was an interpretation of one piece of my life. I appreciate the comments; it is always important to hear from every perspective! :)
      – Sarah

      1. Sarah, nothing you said ever implied that you were comparing. You gave a *very* clear nod to singe parents. It all comes back to that reading comprehension thing. It seems some would rather be offended than take the time to properly read and realize that there actually is nothing offensive. As I see it, the problem is not that we need more discussion- it is that we need better reading and critical thinking skills in the population.

  141. Those of you who are military spouses. You all amaze me! I can’t imagine handling all that you do on a daily basis. I pray the best for all of you.

  142. Don’t forget that besides the military spouse, there are the Military parents. Our lives are stressful in a different way regarding our military child

  143. Thank you we have been out of the Marines for a year one ever understood.
    And better yet I still don’t understand civilian wives, they complain about there husband being gone a week, and I am like. Try 11 years of rarely seen him.

  144. Well, from the perspective of 72 years of life, being an Army Brat & a Navy wife, I can truly attest to most of the ten items. Though 50 years ago when I was a newlywed, we didn’t think most of them were unusual–merely SOP. I recall being left in the hospital the day after the delivery of my second daughter in San Diego (the first one of 14 months being cared for by friends) and my husband flying off to London for a new duty station! Yes, we’re still married–soon 50 yrs. I wouldn’t trade my life for any other–I lived in 12 countries on 5 continents, studied 13 language and, until a year ago, had never lived in one house for 3 years. I’m adaptable, inquisitive, adventurous, flexible, well-educated…most of it thanks to the military!

  145. This is a joke. Toughest job in the military. Seriously? When ever you face uncertainty of death or serious bodily injury. Of unlivable conditions, seeing a friend die. Or seeing how sad and how much a deplorable condition people love in third world countries. Then maybe you can complain a little bit. But then there will be other reasons that will trump your excuses ok why you believe that you have the toughest job in the military. I am pretty sure most of you knew what life would be of you married a military man or woman. If you did not and somehow thought it would be some type of fairy take. Then you were ignorant and misguided. I’m tired of hearing all these ” being a military wife toughest job” it’s not it may be stressful but not the toughest thing. There is TONS of programs and things you can do while your significant other is away like maybe get an education involve yourself in the community get a job etc etc. but this is a joke.

    1. Paul,
      I would never, ever suggest that being a military spouse is the toughest job in the military. That would be completely inappropriate and untrue. I am disappointed that is what you got from this article; in no way did I mean for that message to come across.
      – Sarah

  146. My sister did the whole career with her sailor husband. Every word that was written is the truth.

  147. After reading this I just have to ask: why would anyone do this to themselves, ever? It honestly reminds me of an abusive relationship. I know that there are some spouses who can make it work – many, I’m sure – who have the right set of skills, the right personality, and the right head-space, and that’s awesome. But it seems like they are the exception. No one deserves this kind of treatment in life, especially not voluntarily. It’s too much. So my question is: why would anyone stay, other than the romantic but delusional idea that “love conquers all?” (It absolutely does not, by the way.)

    And I will call BS on one thing: whenever someone says “I knew what I was signing up for.” No. You did not. Some of the military children probably had a good idea, but on the other hand this was the only life they’ve known, so they didn’t know any better. But just like you can’t tell someone without kids what it’s actually like to have kids, you can’t tell someone who isn’t a military spouse what it’s like to be a military spouse. You can’t really prepare a young kid of 20-something for just what they will be giving up, how hard their life will be, and what is really required to make it work. When I read “I knew what I was signing up for,” I hear “I am in too deep to question my choices now, and I am too scared to even think about what undoing all this will do to me, so I rationalize that this was my choice in order to cope with the stress.” It’s self-blaming, another sign that they are probably not in a good place.

  148. THIS is amazingly….ON POINT! Even upon retirement our husbands seem to be distant (Thank you, PTSD and all the other “battle scars” both physically and {especially} emotionally! The struggle and daily regime carries on. Keep pressin’ my fellow mil spouses. Your “reward” is great. Love y’all.

  149. Well, I read some good comments and some bad comments. I was raised a “military brat” and survived. My father was rarely around. He even had a part-time job after working his military job, then sometimes has a weekend job. I can remember when he would be off in England my mother ended up having to pack up the house, get us moved to South Carolina where we stayed for several months until he could find us some place to live in England. It was here responsibility to make sure everything was done, closed up, finalized at home here in the states prior to moving overseas as well as getting everything together for the move and there and making sure school records were together, etc. A daunting task. And yes, whomever of the single parents out there that have had to deal with all this type of stuff on their own, to you as well, it is a daunting experience. I applaud you all.

  150. I was a military wife for 16 years so I can understand and appreciate your struggles. I applaud all military wives

  151. Hi I totally agree with most of this list. However I’d just like to take a second to address that PTSD is worse than missed husband and wife time. As a military spouse and a veteran with PTSD the hardest part is having to manage PTSD which in turn effects all other areas of my life. I know plenty of strong spouses who struggled with time apart before their spouse were affected by PTSD. Now that they must manage and struggle with the hardships presented with a PTSD diagnosis not one of them will ever claim that time apart from their spouse was worse than the permanent damage as a mental illness. Youareliterally living with a totally different version of your spouse for the rest of your life. That is if the couple stays married. One day every military spouse will separate /retire from the military but not one of them could ever retire from PTSD. I totally get this list was to explain our communities hardships , however downplaying a permanent hardship like PTSD can be isulting to all the families who are now living with an illness which is difficult on a totally different level than temporary speration. I served for 10 yrs then married to my wonderful husband. We’ve been married 8 yrs. So with 18 yrs experience io both sides I believe that some sacrifices deserve to rated higher than others. Have a great day.

  152. Not enough attention is given to our veterans and wounded warriors. Let’s not forget them and their wives please. Thank You! (Full time) working wife of a Army Veteran!

  153. I appreciate the reality of this list! thank you!!! I am a military spouse. Something that someone said to me once has stuck with me and i think it applies greatly here, especially to the haters. before our very first deployment, we went to a pre-deployment meeting and the chaplain got up to talk. He said “Never compare suffering.” whatever the member or the spouse is going through, you cannot win if you compare suffering. We make this a huge part of our marriage and it really help us to stay focused on what’s important. It’s good with all relationships really :)

  154. I am a little confused on why people assume certain things. 1) Being a military spouse I’d hard husband or wife 2) Not all of are Stat at home mom’s I have been with my husband for 7 years and for 3 of those I was active duty the other 4 I have been a full time student and working. So when I see things like this it pisses me off that dumb stuff like this is even said

  155. To all the wives/mothers who have of husbands/fathers who serve for there country. I am not one of you amazing people but my cousin who I am very close to despite him being from Scotland and me being from England, we saw each other quite often. As you are probably aware, we are grown up now. He is in the navy and married with children. His wife has got 4 children to bring up and is quite often saying the amount of time he is away. I worry about my cousin sometimes when I hear where he is. I can’t imagine how much stress and how hard it is for you. I don’t think I could cope with the instability of not being able to spend quality time with the ones you love without thinking how long is this going to last. Your absolutely brilliant and that’s an understatement. To those of you who belittle these people, all I have to say to you is …….

  156. I feel for everything your saying , this is a way of life for more then just military people… Civilians suffer same afflictions and worse wondering where there next meal is coming from how to pay the rent or eat . The govt feeds you houses you and clothes you . If you stay long enough pay you a pension for the rest of your life . Your life is a choice many women think men In uniform are exciting and follow them like bunnies chasing a carrot . Your husband can one day leave the military , but fending for yourself without uncle Sam is not easy the military is social welfare for those who can’t make it on there own I.n the free world … Military wives are lonely and desperate just check any bars outside of base . Easy pick up spot for men looking to hook up . Just saying don’t complain intill you pay your own bills honey !!!

  157. Why is it all ways about the wives? I’m a husband and father who has been married to the MOD fir 15 years and it boils my piss that we never get a mention.

  158. why don’t you all just shut up! Crying over who works harder, gets more tired blah blah blah… try serving in the military and being married to some one in the military… now that’s hard work! But we just get on with it! Make the most of the time we spend together!

  159. think this is true in every job where one works away for extended periods in a dangerous profession,but its a lifestyle choice,its what i chose and what i love and yes our kids are resilient,the time apart makes you appreciate the time together all the more!I see conventional marriages as harder but i guess each to their own.

  160. I really needed to read this. I’m a hot mess trying to finish home projects before my husband leaves for training next weekend!!

  161. I hate how people are always saying “you knew what you signed up for when you married your military husband/wife”. I’m not married to my military man (We’re only 19 so we’re waiting), and on days where I feel more down than usual, I’m met with the equivalent of that comment, or worse: “you’re not married to him, why don’t you dump him and go out with another civilian?” Well to those people and to those who tell you you knew what you were signing up for when you married your military spouse: Yes, you know what you’re getting into, but you love your military partner and you don’t want to let him/her go, despite the freaking hell you have to go through to be with them. Personally, when I started dating my military man, it was in high school in our senior year, and at the time he’d applied to the military college but hadn’t had an answer from them. I’d always sworn to myself that NEVER would I EVER fall for a military man because frankly, I look at what all of you do and think Jesus, I’m not that strong and not that brave, I don’t think I can handle it. But you can’t choose who you fall in love with, and that’s why I fell for him and heard a month later that he’d been accepted to college. And because I love him, I’ll marry him one day, because the military life doesn’t scare me nearly as much as losing him. It’s been a year of him being away at school and I’m lucky if I get to see him on weekends because the staff decides to keep them there sometimes, and here I am, still holding on when I see many of his squadmates losing their girlfriends/boyfriends because it’s too hard, and I can only hope that means I’ve got at least the beginnings of what it takes to be a military spouse. So to all of those people who have no sympathy and coolly reply with “you knew what you were getting into” or “if it’s so hard why don’t you leave him/her” : you can’t choose who you fall in love with, and once you do love someone, you can’t just stop those feelings in their tracks because you know they’re military and its going to be hard. Don’t you dare tell me I should leave my man because it’s hard, and don’t you dare dismiss the struggles of the military wife/husband because they knew what they signed up for. Seriously, massive respect to all of you and your military spouses, and I can only hope that one day my boyfriend and I will be able to do what you do.

  162. I have been a military wife since I was 18 now fourth this life is not for the weak yes you have to be independent yes you have to give up your fairytale idea of what the white picket fence looks like but I get so much more than that fence my family will NVR worry about health insurance hospital stays rarely is a good man ever put out of the military so job security and above all else I get to be one of the one percent of women n men in this country who is proud to call their spouse a soldier I will be forever greatful for everything my husband does for me my family and the greatest country in the world I do not hold a candle at home to what he does I’m sorry lady’s but being a wife is hard but nothing compared to being a solider I love my solider proud army wife

  163. Personally I thought this article was written by a 19 year old newbie military spouse. Very childish and self centered. I have been a military spouse for 14 years and work govt myself and I have never thought about any of those things mentioned above being sooooooo hard and yes we have PCS’d 5 times, with 3 kids and a dog and my hubby has been deployed 3 times so please stop feeling that someone owes you something. Civilian wives have it rough at times too. We can accomplish anything we put our mind into.

  164. You should write more about the spouses who don’t have children. The ones who don’t have children to get distracted from so the time passes a bit faster. The spouse who can’t commit to a college because they move so much. The spouse who would love to have friends who can go places without having to take their children every time.

  165. My husband is military fire and police and this fits his other 2 jobs as well. I think a lot of people forget that it’s not just hard for the people in the military it’s hard for the other half and the kids. Thank u for this

  166. I’m a woman who’s been active duty in the Navy for 8 years now, and in my time in, I’ve seen every kind of person described here. I’ve seen amazing, supportive military spouses (both husbands AND wives) who hold down the fort when their spouse is away and give their spouse and children tons of much needed support. Some have jobs, some have kids, some have both. I’ve also seen military spouses that could be called “dependapotamuses”, some of whom were husbands. I’ve seen active duty members who appreciated their spouses and worked extremely hard…. And some that were so lazy I ended up doing their jobs for them because they just didn’t pull their weight. Please, everybody, stop generalizing! This post was written from one woman’s experiences, and she wasn’t begging for pity, either, just sharing what she’s been through. If you don’t like what she’s writing, then don’t continue to read it, but let’s all be adults, if we can manage.

  167. Mostly true – but can we military wives just “chill” for a minute, and put the axe down on the martyrdom thing? The most admirable military spouses are those who are humble about their situations, not seeking pity or 15 min of fame by virtue of being a “military wife”. Why does this even have to be discussed? The world is well aware of the sacrifices our service men, women, and families make. But others in the world sacrifice, too, and have it FAR worse than we will ever have it. Save these “10 things you should know about military wives” blogs for the ones who are now caretakers and widows – no one is more deserving than they are. The rest of us need to suck it up, and quit seeking applause for our choice to marry a military person. After 28 yrs as a military spouse – I have not one complaint about anything. We were blessed, the Army took care of our needs during deployments, the community often wrapped their arms around me with words of support & encouragement, and my kids adapted & grew into flexible, worldly, compassionate adults. Single parents do this every day – as do police spouses, fire spouses, coast guard spouses, and the spouses of medical personnel, and no one is providing free child care, MWR programs, FRG support, ACS, etc. We are SO blessed for the support programs set up to help us through difficult times. So please – let’s stop with the martyr blogs – and just – carry on.

  168. Retirement… after all those years – the six month cruise, the YEAR waiting for housing on an overseas Base where off base isn’t an option, kids that have to ask (again) what a grocery is because they’ve only known commissaries, being totally shocked when you show up at a new command and see someone from eight years ago that you’d lost track of…..

    One of the things that broke my heart was the anger of a young teen at a FFSC sponsored Christmas party for the families of Sailors on their six month cruise when the USO (or whatever) performers sang ‘I’ll be home for Christmas’ – because they were making his Mama cry.

  169. I was married to my husband 4 months to the day before he went to Paris Island for BOOT CAMP! We spent 21+years in the USMC. They told my husband in Boot Camp that if they had wanted him to have a wife the would have issued him one, but you know what…The military takes care of their own. The wives stick together when the husbands are gone. We understand what each of us are going through. It is not an easy life, but I would not trade it for anything. My two son’s grew up knowing so much about different countries. YES they missed their father when he was gone, but once they were old enough they were there for me. My MILITARY FAMILY were also there for me o matter what, and YES even the Marine Corps were there for me for any reason. YES it was a hard life, but one I would never change. I really do miss the Military family life. NO it is not an easy life, but one that I loved. I do not know if it is because I was also and ARMY Brat! My father served 20 years in the ARMY and WWII in the MARINES. Military is the life I have ever known. I wish that we were sill there, except for the fact that we are at WAR, which adds extra stress. My husband joined up in 1968, Vietnam was really a hot spot then. So many of our brave men lost their lives there. I still pray for them and their wives. We were a lucky family, we lived through it, all of us. Thank GOD for our military., and thank GOD for the families that stay behind, yet I still love and respect what their husbands and wives do to protect you and all Americans. NO, life is not easy in the military but I would not change one minute of it. GOD BLESS OUR MILITARY.

  170. As a fellow military wife, your top issues are definately different than mine! This popped up on my mops page, and I actually am thinking that I hope my non-military friends don’t read this and get a total wrong idea about my life! I think generalized titles like this are not very good, we may both be married to an active duty service member but that does not mean we share the same issues! I actually don’t think one of yours would have lined up with mine. So I just ask that you please be careful when making such a blanket statement!

    1. I agree with what YOU just wrote wholeheartedly! This article gives a horrid, bleak depiction of what being a military spouse is like, and I cringe at the thought of my civilian friends reading this and assuming this is my reality.

  171. The article speaks the truth. But the comments that follow are the reason why I just don’t make friends with other spouses anymore. 15 years ago, when my husband first enlisted, spouses still supported each other. I’m not talking pamper chef parties or scrapbooking, but shop BBQ’s, picnics and other family functions that helped the long deployments or TDY’s or even the 14 hour work days… It seems since Facebook and the social media have opened up the doors for degrading, gossiping, and harassing other spouses( mainly new spouses) Or maybe the military spouse no longer understands what it means to be in the military family.

  172. As a Brat and an Army wife of over 30 years here are my responses
    1) “we are always at our limit”……some of us, but ALWAYS really is hyperbole. You must be an officers wife if you think you “HAVE to look like you have it all together”.
    2) you think to much of YOURself
    3) there are civilians that do the same thing. Pull your big girl panties up
    4-10) come on girl, I couldn’t read thru this pity party. I do believe there is FAR more going on with you than just being a Military Wife.

  173. Not one thing could I agree with. Don’t know if y’all would have survived Desert Storm, with no internet or cell phone….let alone Vietnam

  174. Happy to know that both my husband and I serve. Y’all are some bitter people. Congratulations, I’m sure you’ve made someone feel like a piece of shit.

  175. Hello everyone my name is Kiki. I will be a military wife in a month, I am 18 and me and the service solider has been together for 2 years, and like I said I am getting marrie, also moving into base living with him. Now I have a job and I’m going to start college my question is what do I do now !!!! I am soo nervous and when I get there I will have nothing (no job, no school, no money), but my loving husband if that :/ And he is my first boyfriend, kiss and hopefully after marriage everything else he has always been around for everything… ANWAYS I moving here and naturally I am a independent female ,how can I get that back when I move with him like job wise and schooling I want to continue college… I know this comment is everywhere I just need answers and no one has been able to answer them and I’m sorta freaking out.

  176. Wow Thank You for putting the years of being a military wife into a nut shell I spent 10 years and 2 deployments with my husband in the US Army , well he was the soldier but I was holding down the home front with two infants and two elementary aged children , how I still have sanity I’ll never know.
    I came across your article while researching information I needed to support an imfomitive speech I will give in my Oral Communication class it will be entitled Life of a Military Wife and Husband too . Since we have moved out of the military community I see the lack of knowledge and understanding of the impotence of the military spouse and I would like at least change that in the student I attend school with .
    Best break down of a day in the life of a milatary wife, I loved it !

  177. I’m a new navy wife. My husband doesn’t get deployed . He just goes to work , have duty, or underway. How long have your husband have to stay late at work. I think my husband is cheating. First he would come home around 3. Now it’s passed midnight. Help!

  178. I’m a navy wife and I think my husband is cheating. He usually comes home at 3 but now that he has a car he claims that they had them stay late. It is 2 am now. Has anyone husband stayed that late at work? Help!

    1. My suggestion is don’t jump to conclusions. My husband is national guard army so idk how that differs but he always stays till the boss man leaves. Even if they are not doing anything a soldier doesn’t leave ahead of their higher rank unless told. So could be that… I’m guessing if he was cheating he’d probably try to cover it up more than that. Just talk to him.

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  180. *11. Wives becomes the family middle-man and liaison.

    This can be a stressful task for wives to handle depending on critical information she may know, but can’t share fully to family. Sometimes talking with the military member then back to the family to update them is tiresome, at times. The questions, the concerns, the remarks and the comments made can possibly cause tension between wife and family. Usually, it’s not done with malicious intent, but just exhaustion from everyone involved. Wives are doing what their husband have asked of them to do and say. Which you know, can be hard to for the family to understand for why the military member won’t or can’t directly communicate with them or why they can or can’t know everything. Wives try to make deployment easier for everyone else not directly involved, by keeping them updated, staying in contact and reassuring them everything is fine. It’s not the greatest task to do and often not appreciated.

    1. This one wore me out as much as any other thing on the list. After his first deployment the fam was well-trained they are nice people, but my husband was the only one who could answer their questions. I found that I had to grow up a bit because when he would come home from the long trips the extended family had to see him immediately. I know why, and I love them for being such caring people, but just a couple of weeks to settle in a bit with his wife and child would have been helpful.

  181. Why do people get offended? If u don’t like it don’t read it. This was a pick me up for me. Reminding me that Yes I am strong. We are no better then our husbands but we do also deal with a lot on our side of the spectrum . Both sides have struggles if u are the one leaving or the one left behind.

  182. My husband has been in the military 8 yrs National Guard Army deployed 3 times we have a 3 year old I stay at home but currently looking for work I worked while I was pregnant and when my son was 6 months my husband always my job is harder than his but in my eyes his is harder because he’s missing milestone birthdays Hollidays I love being a stay at home mom I clean cook take care of our son my husband is also a truck driver so isn’t home a lot I love my husband for everything he dose and he loves me for all I do :) working or staying at home

  183. I disagree!!! 22 years active duty and counting, and this list is depressingly one-sided! I guess you’ve got it BAD bad. Yuck!

  184. I starting dating a guy I met right before he deployed. I had no idea how difficult it was going to be…. but we are looking at 1 month left. Thanks for the article!

  185. Sons and daughters of the military. Through blood and sacrifices made it is your Birthright to claim what is yours.

  186. Hi. I am 11 years old. My dad is currently somewhere in Afganistan, not sure where, and my aunt is in the USAF in the Indian Ocean. My dad is a dog handler and he is often sending videos of him and his dog. PEOPLE NEED TO STOP CURSING AT THE PEOPLE IN THE ARMED FORCES, THEY PROTECT YOU AND FIGHT FOR YOUR FREEDOM, THEY DIE FOR YOU!! Frankly, I don’t like my family surving for the obvious reasons and because people are rude. It is also a delight to have family in the military because I’m proud.
    They are both supposed to return for the 2015 holidays.

    1. It’s Jessica, I have an identical twin sister and a 15 year old sister. I wish people cared more about others and would teach their kids about the armed forces!!❤️❤️❤️❤️

  187. Why must anyone cuss or tear another down to make their point? Why be defensive and aggressive? I proudly have stood by my honorable spouse for close to 50 yrs, the first 20+ in the Army. We chose for me to set my degree aside for awhile so I may give our children the love and stability they deserve. We did NOT have them so someone else could raise them. That meant being involved at school, in their activities, and taking them to special places. But most of all giving them a routine to life that has unroutine happenings to it. I am only sorry our last one came along so late he missed the traveling and different posts and cultures.

  188. Hello, I’m here to talk about how my relationship was broken and how i save it, my husband saw me with my old school friend in college and said is over between us without even asking me what i was doing with him, because i truly love him i was looking for a solution to get him back till one faithful day i was searching through something on the Internet and i came across someone talking about Dr. EKPEN TEMPLE on how Dr. EKPEN TEMPLE save her marriage so i also took the details of Dr. EKPEN TEMPLE and contacted him and told him about my situation, he told me not to worry that everything will be ok, today I’m happy to tell you that my husband is back to me and I’m even pregnant for him right and we celebrate the last Christmas together, here is Dr. EKPEN TEMPLE contact via email: ((ekpentemple at gmail. com))). Grateful

  189. Its all very true. I grew up in the Military life and married a Military man for over 18 years. It is the stress and distance that awesomely destroys the marriage. You do all you can and if that is not enough, you move on because you don’t have a choice. Bless the Military though. America needs every single one.

  190. So my boyfriend is talking about the military and i am willing to support him through everything. My biggest fear of all of this is i will not have the opportunity to have a family with him. Or when he goes base to base would i be able to live with him? I am asking you guys this because you all seem to know a lot and i want to be as supportive to my boyfriend in this decision as i can be.

  191. I married my husband when I was 21, we dated 18 months before we got married, I was completely head over heels. He asked me to move with him and I did, putting school to the side, for a year or so, since he went over to Germany. We got married and he deployed, I worked and I was no dependa, since he kept the extra money to himself anyways, and I never had access to his bank account, he then put me in serious, serious debt, about 20k worth, during that deployment cheated on me, I found pout later, fast foward we are in a area, still far from home, he is a complete nt ball, hits, cusses, throws stff, and cheats more. We had a baby, in between these cheatings I wasnt aware of, and he never helped with baby, sed paternity leave to go ot, then cheated more, and got caght by the girls father, costing ME 10k for a lawyer, of course he told me it wasnt tre until the fee was paid for the lawyer, still doesnt help, is in trouble at work now, and comes home at noon, still wont help with baby,

  192. Savvy article , Just to add my thoughts , if anybody needs to rearrange two PDF files , my co-workers saw piece of writing here

  193. Now I see why my husband divorced his wife after 15 years of military marriage. Good lord I would hate to have an attitude like that. One minute you say leave us the heck alone the next minute you say you need friends good lord. Your needs are no different than that of civilians.

  194. My husband left me to be with another woman. and wanted him back. i was jealous and it made us argue all the time until he vanished away, I was desperate to get him back, I wasted so much time and money on getting my lover back after I have tried almost all possibilities to have him back and nothing worked. I became lonly for 2 years. To make it short, I found a spell caster Mr Robinson buckler by accident. I don’t know how I found him and i cant remember. But, when I first saw the good testimonies about his wonderful work and after reading the Testimonials, I decided I had to try and give it one last shot. After the spells, a miracle happened, my husband came home. it was awesome, anyone who needs help, should email robinson.buckler@yahoo. com He is the best. whoever need a spell caster that will work for you and bring back your lover should contact Robinson buckler. :) :) :) :) :)

  195. I think the army should pay these family’s better so they don’t have all the stress my son-in-law is in the army an I feel the kids are loosing out the most with all the stress it brings on them people talk crap about the wife’s well they are hard workers as well as the men but in a different type of work they both should get credit for a hard job well done instead of talking them down think about being in there shoes just once

  196. What about the military wives who yes, stay with thier husbands for years, ”suffer” through the seperation of deployments. By cheating, lying, staying at home never working and making little to no effort to support their spouse. I have a family member who has been deployed for a year this time. His so called wife of 15 plus years only messages him about money. Did not bother to see him off, or try to contact him at all for a month, and then was only about more money. Has he been perfect? No, he’s human. But he takes his vow to her seriously, and refuses to leave, even when she slept with his best friend. I have seen it a million times. He’s a paycheck when away, and an pain when he is home

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  198. I didn’t read all the comment. Nor do I really want to. My husband has been out of the Army for 10yrs now. I was also a navy brat for who knows how long. However I see nothing has changed with military wives. I tried a group on fb for veterans wives. Same old same old. I only talk or hang around veterans now. Or non military spouse or member/veteran. I never really liked most the wives when hubs was in or as a navy brat . None of you can get along. No one can joke around. Always judging to much and telling others how to live. Most are fake as F*ck. Then yes a man can be a stay at home father and a damn good one to. It don’t make him any less a man. Might not want to judge to much. When you find out why most men give up working to stay home. It will make you look like the biggest POS ever for talking crap.

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