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Army Wives

My dh came home a few weeks ago and told me that he is joining the Reserves. I wasn't thrilled, but he said that he's doing it for the family and that I basically have no say. This weekend we met with a recruiter who is a close personal friend of ours. He told us everything we needed to know without any BS. We were told that he will be gone for boot camp and AIT for over 6 months and then there is a 100% chance that he will be deployed for a year. The recruiter said that it's the Reserves turn to go to Iraq or Afghanistan now and that if dh signs up he should get ready cause he'll for sure be going.

I thought that this info would make my husband change his mind, but instead he said that he's excited and can't wait to be deployed!! Since then I have become a shell of myself. I am a zombie person, walking around not knowing how to feel or how to deal with this. How is this going to strengthen our family, we have a ...CONT

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Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 7:33 AM on Jun. 14, 2009 in Relationships

Answers (10)
  • CONT.... 7 month old baby at home that's going to forget her daddy and a 6 year old who thinks he's going to "forget to come home"!! Is it normal for me to be feeling like this? I'm going to see my doctor and get put back on some anti-depressants. I think that this is going to ruin my marriage. I'm not talking about infidelity or anything like that, I'm just talking about the fact that he will be away for so long while I raise our family alone. I'm so freaking unhappy, this isn't going to be good. Thank you for listening to me vent and any input from someone who has dealt with this would be wonderful!!
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:35 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • You are doing what many military family memebers go thru daily. There are many people out there who raise children alone while there loved ones are deployed. I will tell you this, it will make you stronger, and it will make you grow up fast if you haven't. If he wants to do this, why can't you support him in his decision. He is trying to take care of his family and this is the way he sees that he can do it.If you think it will ruin your marriage, it won't, but you will if you think this way.There are a lot of people seperated from their loved ones, whether its military, working somewhere away from home, truck drivers, overseas contractors, etc.I hope everything works out for you 2, but, he will need your support if he does this. I can't tell you how to handle it, its something you learn on your own, so good luck.
    Kat122

    Answer by Kat122 at 8:19 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • First, your attitude has to go. You will not make it through a deployment like this. You're right, your marriage will fall apart if you continue to think that he's abandoning you.

    Second, you have to understand him. My husband LOVES to deploy. He loves to do his job and feel like he's making a difference. He hates to leave his family, but he still loves to deploy.

    Third, your children will not forget him, if do the right things, and your marriage can actually GROW and THRIVE, if you do the right things. Pictures and videos of your husband and your children can keep him close to your children. Phone calls, webcams, letters and emails can keep you and your husband close.

    Fourth, he might not deploy right away. It could be a year or two before he actually goes. It depends on the unit he gets put into and what their deployment rotation is. Most reserve units deploy for a year and are home for 2 years.
    Cavalrybaby02

    Answer by Cavalrybaby02 at 8:47 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • I also wanted to say that I'm sorry for being brutally honest, but it is the truth.

    And, depending on what his job is going to be, he might be gone for basic and AIT longer or shorter than 6 months. But until he actually takes the steps, he won't know what he qualifies for or what they are offering.

    There are SO many resources available for you and your children to learn how to cope with this. Sesame Street has a wonderful deployment video for children, that's free of course, it helped my 2-3 year old last time my husband was deployed. She would watch it throughout his 15 month deployment. I think it made her feel like there were other children whose Daddy has to leave. You will have access to free counseling through military one source and a plethora of other resources that I can't begin to name.

    There's also the R&R program, so don't feel like you have to do a whole year without seeing him.
    Cavalrybaby02

    Answer by Cavalrybaby02 at 8:53 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • I might actually encourage him to explore the active duty option. Reserves don't get paid much if they aren't activated. I don't know what your financial situation is or even if he'd be joining as an officer or enlisted, but there's a BIG difference between reserve pay and benefits and active duty pay and benefits.

    Here's a link to a pay chart: http://www.navycs.com/09militarypaychart.html Yes, it's navy, but they all get paid the same. Scroll down to check the difference between active duty pay and reserve pay.
    Cavalrybaby02

    Answer by Cavalrybaby02 at 8:57 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • OP: I'm not being mean to him or anything like that and I don't plan on leaving him. I don't know why I can't support him in this decision, there are just some women who weren't made to be with Military men. I've never dated a man who was already enlisted in the Military, it's not something I've ever been interested in being a part of. I guess I kind-of am supporting him, I mean I haven't told him how I feel, I'm letting him do whatever he wants. I'm trying to get everything ready for him and I'm trying to get my kids ready as well. I'll be faithful to him as he's gone and will try my very best at home, but I won't be happy. I'm not going to be my normal happy, silly self through this there is no way I can change my attitude. This is not what I want.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:33 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • I would strongly advise you to tell him how you feel. If he goes through with it, and you never tell him how you feel, you will start to resent him. And you don't want that. Resentment has the potential to destroy, not only your marriage, but yourself. This should be a decision that you two make together. Please don't let this fester, talk to him about how you feel. He should take your feelings into account.

    I disagree that you can't change your attitude. You make the decision to either be miserable or to be happy. It is a choice. I know because I was once like you and I made the choice to be happy instead of allowing myself to be miserable. Life is too short, and it's not worth it.
    Cavalrybaby02

    Answer by Cavalrybaby02 at 11:49 AM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • ...For better or for worse...." You have to find a way to cope with this decision. He is not making a destructive decision - he has your family's best interest at heart - AND - in these times, he probably wants some income stability. If he leaves his job to deploy or for boot camp, the law requires that he be given his job back when he returns.

    My advice to you would be to talk to the recruiter about resources for Army wives - online resources, counseling resources, group support, etc - and find a group of women in your same situation in which you can find the regular support and friendship you will need during his time away from home.

    I haven't looked, but I'll bet there are a lot of groups on Cafemom for exact situation.
    texassahm

    Answer by texassahm at 12:55 PM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • Yes there are many resources available online.

    Besides the ones here on Cafemom, off the top of my head there are:

    CincHouse.com
    OperationHomefront.net
    MilitaryWives.com
    MilitarySOS.com

    Just google "military wives forums".
    Cavalrybaby02

    Answer by Cavalrybaby02 at 5:14 PM on Jun. 14, 2009

  • Thanks for all of the input, I appreciate it.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:51 PM on Jun. 14, 2009

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