Having gone through every faze a mispouse encounters with the military, I believe that I’ve reached a level of maturity and understanding that I would like to pass on to you.
If you are new to the military life, or you still feel like you’re frustrated with all the curve balls Uncle Sam likes to throw at you, than listen-up: Being a military spouse is MORE than just a marriage…it’s a career.
I have come to realize that being a milspouse is just as much a career for me as it is for my husband. While I don’t advocate wearing my soldier’s rank as it is his to wear, not mine (not to mention it’s just plain obnoxious and disrespectful!), as soon as hubby walks through my door everything he brings home that is military is then dumped on me. In order to keep our home running smoothly and hubby’s life running with less stress, I do my best to help him organize his things.
Here are some examples:
- Daily Military Paperwork:
Hubby rarely has the time to organize everything the military throws on him, so if I want my home to run smoothly I have to find a place to organize his paper for him. Another benefit of this is when hubby’s 1st Sgt. decides he needs that paper he gave him over a year ago, it can quickly be whipped out and presented. Not only does this take the stress off of hubby’s shoulders, it also makes him look pretty good (without sucking up to anyone ;)). This means more promotions!
- Military Medical Paperwork:
Ugh! The dreaded medical paperwork!!! This is definitely the bane of my existence! Hubby hates it just as much as I do, and we used to simply throw it to the side. Because we were both so terrible at keeping track of it and organizing it we have suffered the consequences.
If your soldier gets hurt at any time during his/her time in the military he/she is eligible for medical after being discharged. My hubby blew out both of his knees during boot camp and also broke his shoulder in the middle of his 4 year contract with the marine corps (one of the reasons he wanted to get out). Sadly, since he didn’t keep track of the medical himself and the military “lost” all his records (honestly, I wonder if they do this on purpose), he wasn’t given any compensation.
Learn from our mistakes and keep track of all things medical! That way, if you want to get compensation for anything you can quickly take out all the proof of your injuries when they say they lost it.
- Military Gear:
Keeping up with military gear
is can be a nightmare! Especially if your soldier is unorganized and/or you have a small home. For years it looked like the army threw up all over our house and it was a huge cause of tension between hubby and I.
Then I finally had an epiphany: “You want something done, then do it yourself!”
So I decided to take all the gear that hubby used regularly and stuck it on the shelf in our closet as well as on the floor on his side of the closet. Then I took all of his accessories and organized them in a shoe organizer that hangs on the back of our door next to our closet (I’ll talk more in depth about this later, so stay tuned).
Everything else that isn’t used often hubby has down in the garage, which, thankfully, I don’t spend much time in ;).
It has improved both of our attitudes tremendously! I am no longer nagging at hubby to put his crap away, and he’s no longer spending hours trying to find anything.
- Your Future With The Military:
Hubby never makes a decision with his career without consulting me first. We have both come to realize that any choices he makes with Uncle Sam effects me just as much, if not more than, him. Also, if he is having trouble getting promoted because of whatever reason (and there could be thousands) he talks to me about it so we can bounce ideas around. Most of the time we’re able to come up with something that fixes the problems.
Become involved in your soldiers career without overstepping your bounds (and making yourself look like a fool), and you’ll find that being a milspouse is much more meaningful to you.
Anything to add? Comment away!