Where to live during hubby's deployment — The Bump
Military Families

Where to live during hubby's deployment

Hi ladies.. I usually do all my reading/posting on the multiples board, so I should introduce myself.  We recently moved to Clovis, NM (when babies were 3 weeks old).  Hubby is AF, and will be gone for 5 months, leaving when the babies are turning about 5 mos old.

My question is... would you stay alone for that long w/ 2 babies, or would you go live w/ your parents or some other support person?  I don't have too much time with 2 very fussy babies, so I don't have any real friends here, just acquaintances so far.  No fam of course.  

My dad/step mom, sibs, and extended fam are all in So Cal, and offered to let me live there, but they have stairs in their home, and we'd have the spare room upstairs.  My 19-yr-old brother lives there and he has drunk buddies and girls come and go.  Everyone stays up late.. They have 2 big doggies, and I have my little 7-lb doggie, so the dogs would outnumber the twins.  The whole house is ceramic tile, and the kitchen has double glass doors that stay open and go out into the cement yard w/ open ground pool.  Dogs come and go out of there, and they are not the cleanest creatures, and I'm imagining my babies learning to crawl/walk in their poopy feet and hairy mess... But as you Cali girls know, it's gorgeous there, and we'd have plenty to do/see, gorgeous weather all the time, frequent meals cooked, lots of fam around to see..... etc.  Where I live, however, it's basically the *** of the USA!!  (Sorry any Clovis gals!)

Wow, this was long.  Opinions? 

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Re: Where to live during hubby's deployment

  • My DH leaves for a 7 month deployment later this spring.  My kids will be approx 6 months and 22 months.

    There is no way you could get me to move "home" (I don't really consider my hometown "home" anymore.. I haven't lived there in 12 years).  I will be 30 years old when my DH leaves, and the thought of moving in with my parents makes my skin crawl.  Yes, kids are hard work. Yes, it is nice to have help.  But my privacy, freedoms, and independance are worth more.  My mother is my best best best friend, I love her, we get along swimmingly.  I would like to keep it that way Big Smile.

    I am setting up regular babysitting, joining the YMCA (which has daycare available 12 hours/day), and setting up house cleaning services.  Because my children are small and require a lot of attention I know we will have to have some luxuries (cleaning, babysitting, etc) but it is worth it to both my husband and me.  I personally like being where my DH is stationed - with a small amount of effort you can meet lots of women in the same situation as you.  Join a moms group, look for stroller strides, etc. You can find a great niche that, surprisingly, might be more supportive than even your family (because they can relate).

    Good luck with your choice!

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  • I would stay put, it sounds like you aren't too keen on the idea of going to your dads place anyway. Like the PP mentioned, try to get involved in mommy groups and things like that. It will definitely be hard, as any deployment is, but sounds like you would be more miserable not being able to control the things that go on in your dads house.

    My hubby is deploying for 6 months when LO is 2 months and I work full time, so I've been thinking of what I can do to keep sane while he is going. I have a good support system of friends here, but plan on finding a babysitter so I can enjoy some "me" time every once in a while as well as hiring a cleaning service twice a month. Between being a teacher, taking care of LO and 3 dogs, the house will be the least of my concerns and my sanity the most!

    GL

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  • When my DD was about 3 mo, my DH left for Ranger School and I went home for 2 of the 4 months. Initially I thought I'd be overwhelmed as a new mom in a new place with no friends (plus DD was a preemie and not allowed to go to childcare/crowded places, so that limited my options as far as joining a gym or playgroup, etc), so I thought the visit would be for the whole time he was away, but once I got home with family, I couldn't wait to get back to my own place! It happened that the first two months were through Thanksgiving & Christmas, so it wasn't too bad, but I left right afterward.

    This deployment I am pregnant and high risk, and since I would have no one to take DD for a long stretch if I was hospitalized/had a baby in a long NICU stay again, we decided for me to move home... I really didn't want to, but it was the best decision for the circumstances, and the peace of mind as far as my pregnancy has been great. Also, my DD has significantly benefited from being around her grandparents and cousins, so that is a plus. All that said, if I wasn't pregnant, I wouldn't have chosen this; I'd have just planned a holiday visit.

    So... long story short, my advice (especially based on how chaotic it sounds at your parents' house) is plan a long visit - perhaps 3-4 weeks, but stay home the rest of the time. Planning a visit will give you something to look forward to while he's away, could give you a few weeks of extra help and good family bonding time for the babies, and you could ask your family to make some considerations for a visit (no girls partying in your bro's room late at night : P) that might not be as negotiable for living there long term. It sounds like your twins are just 2-3 months old or so? and it can seem so overwhelming as a new parent in those months that extra hands seem really enticing, but moving back in with parents is never really easy and there are lots of groups on post once you start getting out and meeting more people. Plus, being busy with your kids should make the months go by quickly. My experience is that deployment after having a child goes sooo much faster because you have such a great distraction : )

  • From your post it doesn't sound like you would be comfortable with it so I agree with PP and go for a long stay. Buy a refundable ticket incase you want to stay longer or less. H just deployed in August till December and we had just moved to SD didn't have our own place yet and I didn't know a single person. I went home with my mom and actually enjoyed myself. She got a chance to actually be around DS for longer than a week, I got help and we got to bond again because I haven't lived at home in so long. Yes at times it was hard I mean it's my mom but in the end I was so happy that I went especially having an infant and being our first deployment. Next time though I think I will go for a long stay.
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  • If it were like a year and you felt like you would be completely overwhelmed staying there by yourself, I'd say move home.  But 5 months is not even close to worth all the hassles of moving twice.  No way.  That time will go by so fast, especially with twins.  ;)
  • My brother-in-law is stationed at Clovis, and if it is as bad as he says it is, I would definitely move home, lol. Honestly, I. Your situation, I would probably recommend staying put. You might consider going home for a long visit to pass some time, but uprooting yourself for five months would be more of a hassle than a help, IMO.
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  • I would stay put. The thing is, you are married to someone who may just TDY/deploy at least once in your enlistment period and WILL if you stay in longer than 4 years. Are you going to go home every single time this happens? Now, I am not knocking how hard it is with twins, my Brother has a set, one with a hearing impairment. But you are never going to "get over the hump" with them. When they are older, they will be walking and getting into things, which is harder in my opinion. After that, you will have school... Learn how to do this on your own now, while they are immobile.
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  • Given the description of where you would stay and that your DH would be gone 5mos, I would stay put and look into babysitters, Moms Day Out, play groups, etc. type of things.  If he was going to be gone a year, then MAYBE I'd change my mind but I wouldn't stay somewhere like what you described, especially with the ins and outs of people, etc.  Sounds like it would be cramped anyway.

  • I am moving home when my H deploys, but I think it is something that every person needs to answer for themselves. Every situation is different.

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  • imageIlumine:
    I would stay put. The thing is, you are married to someone who may just TDY/deploy at least once in your enlistment period and WILL if you stay in longer than 4 years. Are you going to go home every single time this happens? Now, I am not knocking how hard it is with twins, my Brother has a set, one with a hearing impairment. But you are never going to "get over the hump" with them. When they are older, they will be walking and getting into things, which is harder in my opinion. After that, you will have school... Learn how to do this on your own now, while they are immobile.

    llumine.. my mom said the same thing.  He's a pilot, so his commitment is 10 years, and they deploy twice a year every year.  I knew how much he'd be gone, but I had no idea how much work raising two infants would be.  There are days when he flies and I'm alone for 18+ hours that I don't brush my teeth or shower.  Sometimes dinner is a handful of marshmallows and some cheese, LOL!  This is why I (who am fiercely independent) have been considering the temp move...  thanks for your input, all. 

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  • It sounds like you know that staying put is the more sane of your options. Life with your family sounds exhausting, though having others around is nice. In that vein, can you have people come out to stay with you for a week here and a week there? Since you would have had to pay for at least two plane tickets for you and the kids to fly to Cali, maybe you could offer to help pay for a loved one's ticket. That way, you have company to look forward, you'd have some help during those visits and, you are staying at home, where things are familiar (for you, the babies and the dog!)and you have all of the babies' toys and baby gear.

    FWIW, I used to feel differently about "moving home" for a deployment. I always thought that I would never move home. Well, circumstances were such that I could stay put, where I knew nobody, had no connection to the post, and the Army would pay for my move. So, I moved to be near my family. It worked out well as I got really sick at delivery and needed more help than I could have ever imagined. Though, DH was gone for 14 months and I rented my own house. In the future, I plan to stay put if/when DH deploys again, but, I have also softened on my view of "moving home".
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  • I personally would stay put.  My husband's first deployment was when we were in Germany and it was for 15 months.  I didn't want to leave my home to go stay with someone else.  I like my privacy and space.  My kids were 2 and 4 at the time.  Was it tough?  Heck yeah but it made me much stronger and independent.  I put myself out there and made friends who I am now closer to than many of my friends I went to HS with.  I liked that the people that I was around understood what I was going through.  No matter how hard they try my family and non military friends just don't understand.  My friends that I went through 2 deployments with could tell right away if I was having an off day because they had those days themselves.

    For the second deployment my husband wanted me to move back to the US to be with my family but I refused.  I was 13 weeks pregnant when he left for a year.  I had most of the same group of friends from the first deployment still there plus a few others.  

    You have to do what is right for you but honestly, moving for 5 months with 2 babies sounds like a nightmare to me.  I would rather keep my kids where they are familiar and have their own beds and things around them.  Maybe you can go back for a month to get a break.  The first deployment I ended up going back to where my family is for funerals and I stayed a month each time.  Staying at my sister's house for a month was just too much, I wanted to be home in my house.  We did also pay for my sister and my niece to come and visit to help pass time.  

  • First off I just wanna say that your boys are adorable! I moved home for this deployment, my son was only 2 weeks old when DH left and the thought of spending a year alone scared the heck outta me! I ended up lucky with a fairly "easy" baby which is awesome, but had I not scared myself into thinking I couldn't do it then I would never have moved. I should have stayed and tried to make it on my own, made new friends and possibly learned how to cook! Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love my family and my IL's and their help with DS has been great and allowed me to go to college. But next deployment I will definitely be staying home and just coming back for visits.
    Married 5/29/09
    DS 8/10/2010 8lbs 6oz
    DD 11/28/2012 8lbs 7oz
    It's a Girl! Due 2/5/2017
  • for a 5 month deployment it would probably be better to stay put. I know how hard it is (I have almost 4 year old twins and hubby has been gone 2 out of 4 years) but it will get easier. Once you make it through those 5 months, you will feel strong and fearless. I just went through the hardest deployment and it was only 7 months. It was hard becuz I am stuck in Hawaii and he deployed less than a month after we arrived. I was lonely and frustrated becuz visiting "home" was out of our budget. I made it through and I feel so proud. The next one is coming in a year, when I will have two four year olds and a 7 month old but I feel strong and able. I have considered going home for it, but moving again seems too much and I don't want to miss any time with the hubby. My point is, yes it is hard and you have to decide what is best for yourself and your family. Good luck and remember you are never the only one :)
  • image2ndtymmommy:
    for a 5 month deployment it would probably be better to stay put. I know how hard it is (I have almost 4 year old twins and hubby has been gone 2 out of 4 years) but it will get easier. Once you make it through those 5 months, you will feel strong and fearless. I just went through the hardest deployment and it was only 7 months. It was hard becuz I am stuck in Hawaii and he deployed less than a month after we arrived. I was lonely and frustrated becuz visiting "home" was out of our budget. I made it through and I feel so proud. The next one is coming in a year, when I will have two four year olds and a 7 month old but I feel strong and able. I have considered going home for it, but moving again seems too much and I don't want to miss any time with the hubby. My point is, yes it is hard and you have to decide what is best for yourself and your family. Good luck and remember you are never the only one :)

    Just gotta say I loved this, especially the reminder at the end.  So easy to feel sorry for yourself thinking no one understands how hard it is to have twin newborns, doing most the raising alone.

    Thanks everyone for the input.  You've helped nudge me in the direction I know is right.. I need to stay put. 

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  • DH always wants me to go home, he actually called my parents on his own accord and planned with my dad to have them come down and pack me out and take me home. (that was Haiti tho and he had no idea how long he would be gone, i had just got out of the Navy, and we had just gotten married, and he had 2 days to prepare to leave) LOL. I dont mind going home tho, my parents work a ton and my sister is a teen so i have free sitting if i ever need a break. 

    This time tho we are in Guam, and im pregnant. SH is deploying a month before im do and they already told him he wouldnt be here for the birth of our baby. We've only been here for a couple of months, and i still dont know too many people, and he/I dont want me to give birth alone here, with a 2 year old. So we decided it would be best for us to go home. I will actually be at home for about 11 months. We have to leave early because he has a class and the restrictions on pregos flying. 

    BUT! i agree with everyone else, if it were for longer (or you were pregnant with twins) i would say move home, and just kind of regulate the doggies and the cleanliness of the floors and stuff. I like the idea of a extended visit. That way you always have the option to leave when everyone starts to grate on your nerves!

    Good Luck to you while he is deployed! i know it sucks. My DH has been deployed 5 times in 3 years. You have two beautiful babies! I think the time will fly by with them keeping you busy!!!!

  • Wow, from your description, your dad's house sounds like an awful place to spend 5 months of your life. If you feel as strongly about it as you described it, then clearly it's not the place to stay!

     

    Honestly, a 5 month deployment is a flash in the pan according to this Army wife (30 months of deployments and separations during DD's first 40 months of life), and that is way too short of a time to be worth a full move, IMO. Month .5-1 is grieving, Month 5 is looking forward to him getting home, and it's only 3 months or so in between! You'll have to pay to move the three of you to CA and back. Not worth it.

     

    Plus, at some point, you'll feel fully committed to an adult life with DH and your babies and staying with your parents will just not feel right any more. I LOVE my folks, they are fantastic with DD, and I stayed with them for 2 week stints many times over the last 7 years. Even so, it just kicked in at some point that it was more stressful to do it because I missed my own home, own kitchen, own yard, own annoying neighbors, own friends, etc. I wouldn't want to be in a dirty, noisy, dangerous house full of family with toddling twins when that need to be in your own place kicked in!

     

    Good luck with your choice. It's fantastic that they have offered, but I'd do a nice long 2-3 week visit in the middle of the deployment if I were you. 

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  • I just went through this same decision.  I am currently 24 weeks pregnant, but I am high risk.  We knew this would happen when we found out about his deployment.  I also have a five year old daughter who has health problems.  My husband left two weeks ago on an 8 month deployment.  I decided to stay for a couple of reasons,

    1.)moving would be more stressful and tiresome than staying put.

    2.)I can learn to rely on my Navy family for help

    3.)Financially, it was a stretch, because the Navy wouldn't pay for another move.

    4.)My daughter would have more stability by staying.

    5.)I had already established rapport with our pediatrician, and OB.

     

    I will be going home after the baby is born because none of my family will be able to come to stay with me after the baby is born, and we will have been here for one year.  I know that our situation was unique, but make a list of all the things that will change and arrange them into pro con lists.  I hope that any of this helps.   

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