I'm ashamed to admit it, but I hate being married to the military. As a military brat my whole life, I should have known better when I married my active-duty husband last year. But the married military life is quite different than that of a child in a military family. I know that now.
I hate the lack of control. I hate how they treat spouses like idiots and babies. I hate all the mandatory rules and meetings. I can't find a job because every employer is concerned that I will leave too soon, and I hate that too. I can't stand the whole military culture - I don't like the military wife stereotype because I don't fit it at all. Overall, I'm sorely disappointment and completely freaking out. My husband is a pilot and has a 11 yr commitment, so it's not like we are getting out any time soon. Some days I just want to run away from it all. I want to say audios, move back to the city, and find myself a satisfying career. It doesn't help that my husband is SO gung-ho about the military. He thinks it's amazing, and he as some pretty high aspirations.
I know I'm supposed to stand behind him and be the good, supportive wife. But I just don't feel like it.
I don't want to feel like this. I want to change my attitude. I want to be on-board and supportive. But how?? Am I alone in this??
There can be no freedom without sacrifice
Mandatory rules and meetings for your husband or you? I hope you don't mean you because I was an AD AF spouse for 28 years and there were no mandatory rules and meeting for spouses.
Not sure what stereotype you are thinking about either. I'm pretty sure I didn't fit any stereotype either. And I believe that being the supportive wife means doing what is best for the two of you and your relationship. That doesn't really have anything to do with what others think you should be doing.
No, You're not alone. I had problems with my husband's service, too. I didn't like how the country decided to use our National Guard and separate him from me and our son for year long or more deployments. I also hated the way I felt about it and wanted out of our marriage so he could find a good "cheerleader" who could blindly support him and whatever mission he was asked to do. The short answer is correct. If you want to stop feeling the way you do--get therapy. I did and it helped. Also, talk to your husband. He didn't marry a stereotype-he married you.
My husband didn't want a military cheerleader. He wanted me. I do have a brain, a career, and strong emotions. He loves me and would not want a "Stepford wife". More than likely your husband wants and loves you for your uniqueness and passion, too. The military life is a challenging one, but so are other professions.
Consider a job/career that is home and/or internet based so it can follow you as your home moves. Yes, your husband's choice of career may limit some of your options, but it does not have to limit you. To change your attitude you will have to learn how to change yourself. Start by trying to find the positives in your situation. If you can't find ANYTHING positive,than you know for sure to take Mrsjvb's advice.
How long have you guys been married? Honestly, I'm also very tired of the 50s stereotypes of enlisted wives being uneducated baby factories and officer wives being bob haircut, pearl wearing ladies. Are there wives like that? Sure, but that's also in the civilian world. My DH is enlisted and here I am with a college degree, a great paying mobile job with the State Dept, and only had two kids in my 30s.
I agree that counseling might help you, but you might also want to try starting some sort of team or program of interest to you for the wives. For example, there is a kickball team for our unit that the wives started themselves and they play other units at our base. It's a great way to meet lots of different people, some you may like and find things in common with, others not so much. I know it's hard when you're feeling down, but you have to put yourself out there to be able to give this whole lifestyle a fair shake.
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"Every Saint has a past, Every Sinner has a future"
I agree with the counseling. I also agree you need to find some outlets - work, volunteer whatever to help you out here.
I never fit the stereotype, never dealt with "mandatory predeployment briefings" etc.(actually taught at 'em and after that hubby respectfully told his command we would not be attending), found my own niche' for work, made my own support system and so forth.
Yes, being a spouse is different from being a brat. There also comes a point where you have to stop playing the victim and take charge of your life and the hand you are dealt. Find what makes you happy, what you can do where you are and do it.
I ran one of the first large military spouse support websites (began it in '95); I was very successful with designing and making colorguard/winterguard uniforms and silks, our daughter is out of that now so I have moved on to different areas of designing; I've done a lot of work with and continue to work with the National Military Family Assoction; I was ombudsman; I worked with a regional magazine in GA writing and doing layout design; I've sold counted cross stitch designs; if I was interested in it, I did it.
Don't let the words "military spouse" put you in some sort of imaginary box you think others expect of you. I still supported my husband in his career and in his flying. (Sad to say his plane, P-3 Orion, will be retired in a matter of years here) But you can support them in their career and still have a fulfilling life of your own. It may take some time to figure it out, but it can be done. There are many successful wives out there. We aren't all "Stepford Wives", we don't all strictly toe the party line, but we don't completely buck the system either. Like anything in life it's a balancing act.
Everything becomes a little clearer, I realize what life is all about. It's hangin' on when your heart has had enough, It's giving more when you feel like giving up.
~ In My Daughter's Eyes, Martina McBride
14000 posts as Cider33Alpha
I was a 25 year old Army Captain who married a 28 year old AF Captain. (This was in the 70s.) All was swell until we went to the Air Force Academy - talk about a shock! It was a flashback to the 50s that would have embarrassed my mother, the quintessential colonel's wife.
My solution? I got a full-time job I loved and said, oh so regretfully, that I would be unable to make any wives' club meetings or other daytime functions. We didn't go to all that many evening functions, either - just the most important ones or ones we wanted to attend.
It certainly didn't hurt his career - he was promoted to Major below the zone.
I don't think you need counseling as much as you need to knock off the pity party and find a solution you can live with. It's not that hard, and I don't feel sorry for you.
My Dad's favorite saying? "The biggest difference in the world is the difference between a colonel's daughter and a second lieutenant's wife ..." He was right - all that's needed is some growing up.
I don't know what avenue your husband took for commissioning but I don't know of any where he would incure a 11 year commitment.
The way I see it, you have three options;
1. get your head straight and enjoy the service life
2. ask youtr husband to resign his commission at the earliest
2. say good by to him and his military
It is a shame really, there are lots of ladies out there that would love to be in your situation.
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Democracy will survive until the government figures out it can bribe the people with their own money.
I can see it
I know NROTC SNAs signed for 8 years the counter for which started following winging when DH commissioned (and winging was taking 2-3 years depending on platform and stash time).
yup.. My mid( currently upstairs napping) is going Aviation. he has a 10 year commitment minimum including training.. and the clock doesn't start until he gets past the first phase of Flight school in Pepsicola.
he doesn't report until August. He graduates.. a week from Tuesday...
There can be no freedom without sacrifice
14000 posts as Cider33Alpha
Congrats, mrsjvb - to you AND him!
Family Service Center... They can help when your are ready.
Running away to the City would not be my first choice but the Family Service Center can help you put your Choices in Perspective.
I can relate in so many ways! I waited until I finished college to get married. I had had a great career up until I married the Army. I have experienced the mind set of we don't want to hire you and you move etc. I have both been annoyed with the wife stereotype and witnessed many who fall right into it. However I have meet more women who do not fit it then those who do. There will always be the "free rider wives" which cracks me up beyond belief because we make less money in the army then before my husband joined but hey everyone has their own level of ambition. I had huge dreams for my career which at first I thought were shattered and I did in fact move "back to the city" for a while. I struggled with the lack of control I hated it! I am very close with my family and I couldn't take being so far. It nearly ended my marriage but I began to put myself out there, meet people, talk to anyone anywhere. You will eventually meet a like minded friend and one friend can make all the difference. Take pride in your husbands career. We are a driving force in their success. I never could understand why I was "thanked for my service" or congratulated on my husbands promotion but I get it know. I take care of him so he can take care of his work, I help him study for boards and keep him on track with his goals etc. We also started our family and although the delivery of our last son le much to be desired the benefits and support we receive would never occur civilian. We had decided to no reenlist again but upon taking a long trip home we realized all of the benefits our life affords us. Military life is not glamorous but it is not bad. It's a safe life. I see so many young military families miss manage their finances and no offense run around looking like trailer trash but that is not all of us. As far as the job front it's hard all around. Here's where it gets tricky. By law they can't and should not ask about you being married, if you have kids anything. But they do and it is hard not to answer. For that I recommend ready made vague answers. " what does your husband do?" oh he works in aviation...then promptly return a job related question to them. For me I have taken my BSBA and MBA and decided on a portable career which is real estate. No one can deny you because you are your own boss. It's easy to change states and you control your schedule. Also the Mycaa programs pays for the program. Feel free to email me if you want info or just plan need to vent. Pen pals are helpful most times our friends and family don't understand or worse encourage us to bail. 60% of marriages fail right so what do they care if yours does. It's up to you where you fall. The longer you commit the stronger you will commit and they happier you will be. Ps sorry for typos iPad typing stinks.
14000 posts as Cider33Alpha
It's all in how YOU make it. You knew what you were getting into when your husband took the job. If not, then you should have talked about it and done your research. I have not seen anywhere that they treat spouses like idiots and babies, unless you are. And trust me, I've seen them. They have rules for a very good reason and at any job, you will have rules and regulations.
You tell me where he will find a job that will automatically give him 30days vacation, give him training holidays off, 100% coverage on medical, military discounts, Move your family at the expense of the Military and pay you for the move, have all kinds of freebies like schooling, things for the kids, free family retreats, who will put up with a lot of crap from the soldiers and that soldier still gets promoted., etc..
Yes, you should stand behind him, suck it up, pull up your pants and deal with it, OR get out of the marriage and don't take part of his BAH when you leave. Yeah, another thing military gives. But working in the real world you won't get if you divorce.
So you are putting "your" career on hold? Then get that free schooling that MYCAA offers to spouses. Yeah, FREE (for lower ranks.) I see a lot of wives getting their Masters while they are in the Military and for nothing or almost nothing.
Most of what you said usually comes from a young, naive under the age of 25 spouse, which I'm assuming you are.
And who cares if you don't fit in. I don't fin in either, but I DON'T CARE. I don't need friends. I keep to myself, I walk, work out, craft, clean house and spend time with my spouse and dogs.
Just know that you have your husband and if you have dogs/cats &/or kids, then you have them. That's all you need. Don't pay attention to all the other crap that some spouses put out.
You can make the best of it, learn and move on or be one of those babies and run. Fight or Flight, it's up to you.
the first thing you have to do is stop calling yourself a "military wife" when did you marry the military?? you did not you married a Man in the military.
second: there is no requirement that we have to associate with each other, I do have a couple of freinds whose husbands are military, but they do are not "married to the military" most of my friends are civilian.
third- it is not required and is against the law for the employer to ask about spouses employment- I never ever disclose that my DH is millitary- NEVER. I have never not gotten a job I wanted.
lastly: seriouls change your attitude and get a difference perspective or you will be miserable-
and I have never heard of anyone having an 11 year commitment--- something is not right there
10 years is standard for Pilots and NFOs.. 11 is not out of the realm of possibility.
There can be no freedom without sacrifice
I know how you feel somewhat. I hate that my husband is going to be taken from me whenever needed, but I know this is the best life he could provide for us. Niether of us were born into wealth and it is becomeing increasingly difficult to get a good job whitout a good degree, and even with that degree you arent garunteed a good job. My husband is in BMT right now and I am having the worst time ever. Ive not been away from him for more than a day or so in the last 3 years and now hes gone for a few months. What is this family service center everyone talks about? From what I understand its some kind of place for military family members? I know that I could use some help because ive been awfuly lonley without him.
Military Life, Spouses & Community
11185 posts as navywifeinparadise
Family Service Center has a variety of names depending on the branch. It is a place for the families to gain information about the location they are at, the programs available, etc... They have a Spouse 101 class that can give you a lot of information, a budgeting class, to buy a house, to buy a car, some job placement fairs, a welcome aboard tour of the base/post, area information, etc....
And to add on to this, in the AF it is called the Airmen and Family Readiness Center. And the Spouse 101 class is called HeartLink.
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