Any advice on dealing with husband away? New baby — The Bump
Military Families

Any advice on dealing with husband away? New baby

Hello, I am looking for any wisdom or advice. On how to cope with a husband missing out babys first month and how to deal with lonliness.... Husband and I have been together for 8 years (since highschool) Truly best friends... Got married a little over a year ago and he decided on joining the milititary after college in OCT. This was a joint decison... I think I actually played a large role in his desicon considering my father is prior service and I worked for the dod. Well we decided on having a baby (wanted to be younger parents), he ended up leaving for training sooner than expected.... Long story short he was told that he would be able to see me and the baby visit, be there for the birth... blah blah blah and now he is being told other wise ( which I understand comes with the military ) So we prepared ourselves and I have been preparing my self, but its freaking hard! 

I am living near his parents and mine (for help) and yet I feel like Im always alone and have no help all the time.Sometime I just need help and no one is here to help me and I am a very independent person and just hate to rely on everyone. Due in less than a month, I dont know if its bc Im overly emotional or what but seems like I have been extra sensitive about being alone and dealing with a new baby. My husbands training has been crazy for him, he barley been getting 3 hours of sleep a night and any chance he gets he calls. I appreciate it alot, bc alot of the guys dont even call their wives... But I have been mad at him and I dont know why. I know why he joined and why he is there ( bc we thought it would be best for us all) but I keep asking myself was it worth it and I feel guilty bc I think I played a large role in him joining. I keep on thinking what if he never even meets his son ( Im morbid), but the other day he mentioned the same thing to me (made me sad)... At the doctors office I saw a couple about my age (25) with a new baby and husband was so helpful and it made me soooo sad (litterally started to cry) bc I know that will never be us. I told DH and he said yeah it will be in a couple of months, but in the back of my mind I know it wont bc our son will only be that little once and he is going to miss it... makes me sad for him bc he is a awsome uncle and is great with kids. I just cant imagine how heart broken he is. I told husband that I feel like some 18 year old babys mama that got pregnant by some random guy and is doing everything alone... I go places by myself to get baby things and feel like people are judging me ( which really bothers me for somereason).... Anyways thats the jist of it... I can probly ramble on and on. I guess I am looking for some advice or shared experiences on dealing with this, I told husband I think I need therapy bc I have been crying alot about it latley.But I think it could just be pregnancy???   Dont get me wrong I am super exited about the baby and sooooo ready to meet him, DH keeps telling me that things will get better when he is here. So any advice on dealing with this? Experiences? Thanks.

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Re: Any advice on dealing with husband away? New baby

  • I can see where you are coming from.  DH was re-training in tech school from when I was 20 weeks pregnant until LO was a month old.  I'm sure pregnancy hormones didn't help, but I would get sad sitting in the waiting room alone while seeing other happy couples. It was tough. 

    The first couple months are the hardest because you are so sleep deprived.  You will need someone to watch LO so you can sleep, or help cooking meals, cleaning, etc.  There's nothing wrong with asking family or close friends for help.

     

     

     

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  • I don't have any advice as yet but will probably need some...  My husband is deploying in two weeks, he will miss the entire pregnancy and more than likely the birth as well as the first 4 - 5 months.  I guess all you can do is take comfort in the fact that you married your best friend, he loves you and you are not alone even though you feel like it.  Try not to dwell on the days you are alone but look forward to when you will be together.  Like I said I cannot relate at the moment but will be feeling your pain within weeks.  My first appointment is Feb 8th and he won't even get to be there for that.  But I just keep thinking how very lucky I am to have him and that once he comes home everything will be right with the world again. 

     I'm so sorry you are feeling down and wish you luck on fighting forward, keep faith and remember all that you've built together. 

     

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  • We don't have kids yet, but last time DH was gone I spent a lot more time with family. I know you said you're independent and don't like relying on everyone, but it can be really comforting to just be around another person. We were living near his family when he left and I usually went over for dinner after work and after our lease was up I moved in with them for a few weeks until DH and I moved to our next duty station. If you're comfortable relying on them a little more I can tell you it helped me a ton. It was so much easier getting "home" from work but being around other people instead of going home and instantly realizing that I was totally alone and DH wasn't there. I'm sorry you're having to deal with this. Hang in there though, only a couple more months!
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  • My best advice is that you are not alone - and to be honest, this is just the beginning. My husband was sent to Afghanistan (with 2 weeks notice) when I was 16 weeks pregnant and didn't return until 2 months before the baby was born. We then thought he'd at least be here for her first year - wrong again... We were told 7 weeks before she was born, that he'd be leaving a month or two after her birth (he was being attached to another company -- he's in special ops). Not to mention, we were lucky he was even home for her birth (as he had to go to predeployment training and SERE). He left a few weeks after she was born, and we ended up scheduling her birth because we knew I had to have a csection (for medical reasons) and would need him home until I was able to care for her alone.

    He's gone now -- we tried for years to have a baby and when we were  finally able to, he's been missing out. He's a wonderful father and did everything (and I mean EVERY SINGLE thing from diapers, to feedings, to clothes to baths, etc.) while he was here just soaking up every moment... but this is life in the military. 

    On my rough days, I think about it like this -- thank god we have wonderful benefits and he's the one sacrificing to ensure we are able to have everything we do. It really is harder on them - being gone, missing out... Don't get me wrong, it is very very hard to care for a new baby all alone -- I'm exhausted all the time, but at least I have my  LO (whereas he is all alone).

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  • image Excited Mrs P:

    My best advice is that you are not alone - and to be honest, this is just the beginning. My husband was sent to Afghanistan (with 2 weeks notice) when I was 16 weeks pregnant and didn't return until 2 months before the baby was born. We then thought he'd at least be here for her first year - wrong again... We were told 7 weeks before she was born, that he'd be leaving a month or two after her birth (he was being attached to another company -- he's in special ops). Not to mention, we were lucky he was even home for her birth (as he had to go to predeployment training and SERE). He left a few weeks after she was born, and we ended up scheduling her birth because we knew I had to have a csection (for medical reasons) and would need him home until I was able to care for her alone.

    He's gone now -- we tried for years to have a baby and when we were  finally able to, he's been missing out. He's a wonderful father and did everything (and I mean EVERY SINGLE thing from diapers, to feedings, to clothes to baths, etc.) while he was here just soaking up every moment... but this is life in the military. 

    On my rough days, I think about it like this -- thank god we have wonderful benefits and he's the one sacrificing to ensure we are able to have everything we do. It really is harder on them - being gone, missing out... Don't get me wrong, it is very very hard to care for a new baby all alone -- I'm exhausted all the time, but at least I have my  LO (whereas he is all alone).

    yeah very true, that helps. Glad Im not alone, I feel like I have a mental issue or something. lol Have been hoping its not early postpartum... My mom delt with it for years, my dad was SF too and there were times were she did not even know where he was at for months! But it honestly didnt seem to phase her, so I have been thinking there is something wrong with me! Thanks ladies for the advice greatly appreciated.

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  • There is absolutely nothing wrong with the way you are feeling. I feel alot of the same things you do. My DH is deploying about 3 weeks after our first LO is due. We dont live anywhere near family or friends and we dont have the money to move me back home. So I will be staying right where I am until he gets back. Its going to be extremely difficult and Im scared and worried. But I will be fine and so will you! You're alot stronger than you think!

     

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  • You don't have a mental issue - it just really is very depressing. I remember crying and crying and crying when I found out he had to leave again and that I'd be left alone with a new baby. Even after she was born, I'd stare at him with her and just burst into tears. He thought I had PPD, but I didn't -- I was just upset he was leaving.

    But, it is really hard differentiating between PPD and just being upset.. so keep an eye on it and if you really can't stop being sad then talk to your doctor. I was sad, but I knew exactly why, and once my DH left, it was hard, but I moved forward and was able to stop crying and do what I had to do.

    I'm not sure how old your parents are, but military life is really much different now than it was years ago. We are actively at war and have been for a while. My DH's father retired from the Marine Corps. and my DH was considering making it a career as well (he's been in 6+ years)... but after having our daughter and realizing how much he is missing out on, and the fact that we both highly doubt there is an end in sight of combat zone deployments, we both agreed that he will be leaving at the end of his contract. To us, it's not worth risking our daughter growing up without a father.

    At least your DH is in training and not in Afghanistan... so while it is still hard, it could be much worse. His unit works in teams and they are constantly moving from place to place and I don't hear from him sometimes for weeks... it sucks but you just have to make the best out of what you are given.

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  • My husband was home while I was pregnant and even living with him he was always missing my appts. He was only able to go to the first u/s and maybe 2-3 other appts. He was ALWAYS in the field or doing some training. His last field op was a few days before my due date and he was hours away. I always felt alone, upset and mad at him (def the hormones) I know it wasn't his fault & he couldn't do anything about it. What your feeling is completely normal!! He deployed a little bit after our son was born and now it still sucks!!!! I came home to be around family but nights are rough when I'm alone and baby wants to be up all night = I HATE being alone but when my son smiles at me I feel so much better and I am grateful I get to be with him whereas my husband is missing out on so much. It really breaks my heart but theres nothing I could do but send him pictures. I would def. recommend taking up some help I'm very independent too but I have family watch the baby when I nap or when he goes to grandma's house I'm able to relax or get things done. Your gonna be overwhelmed and your hormones probably wont help things so just accept the help anyone offers and don't be afraid to ask. The first few weeks are the hardest so even if someone comes over just to make you a meal or let you take a nice hot shower you will be forever grateful lol. Good luck and hope DH comes home soon. 
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  • My husband was home while I was pregnant and even living with him he was always missing my appts. He was only able to go to the first u/s and maybe 2-3 other appts. He was ALWAYS in the field or doing some training. His last field op was a few days before my due date and he was hours away. I always felt alone, upset and mad at him (def the hormones) I know it wasn't his fault & he couldn't do anything about it. What your feeling is completely normal!! He deployed a little bit after our son was born and now it still sucks!!!! I came home to be around family but nights are rough when I'm alone and baby wants to be up all night = I HATE being alone but when my son smiles at me I feel so much better and I am grateful I get to be with him whereas my husband is missing out on so much. It really breaks my heart but theres nothing I could do but send him pictures. I would def. recommend taking up some help I'm very independent too but I have family watch the baby when I nap or when he goes to grandma's house I'm able to relax or get things done. Your gonna be overwhelmed and your hormones probably wont help things so just accept the help anyone offers and don't be afraid to ask. The first few weeks are the hardest so even if someone comes over just to make you a meal or let you take a nice hot shower you will be forever grateful lol. Good luck and hope DH comes home soon. 
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  • My H left when our LO was 3 weeks old. I was fortunate and was able to come back and live with my parents and LO for the 6 months he will be gone. We live on opposite coasts and it's our first. When I found out in Aug that he would be getting deployed in Nov I cried for hours the first few days and then realized I just needed to get my stuff in order! I still cry when I think of all the things that he is missing. Her first everything including holidays! I do the best I can recording video and taking pics. I send him an email everyday with a picture and letter from LO's point of view. He loves it! We Skype daily, sometimes twice a day. We are lucky, as lucky as you can be when H is deployed that he has a staff job with set hours. Just remember to take things one day at a time. Try not to get overwhelmed with everything that he's missing or not going to be there for. We try to focus on what he will be here for and what he'll experience like her walking/talking instead of what he's missing, crying/pooping/eating!

    One thing my H tells me and it's totally true, only do what needs to be done. Sometimes I feel like I need to do everything myself and all at one time. As long as the baby is fed, clean and loved that's all you need to do for LO.

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  • my hubs will be deployed when my baby gets here and won't be back until he/she is 6-8 months old... it makes me sad to think of all the things he's going to miss out on. He really really wanted this baby and he's going to miss out on a lot. On top of that I'm a little freaked out at the thought of being by myself when the baby comes since my family lives on other side of the country. I try not to be upset at hubby because it really isn't his fault and I know if he could he would be here with me.
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  • Dealing with a deployment and a new baby at the same time is rough... doable, but rough.  DH was at the mob station and only got to come home for 3 days when LO was born, and then he managed a 4-day pass before they left to actually go overseas when LO was a month old.  LO will be about 8 months old when DH gets home. 

    If the laundry piles up for a few days or the dishes don't get done right after you use them, don't worry about it - just take care of it while LO is catching a nap. If you feel the housework *must* be done, take advantage of the time that you have company coming to see the baby - let them play with LO while you do the dishes or fold a load of laundry.  There's nothing wrong with getting stuff done while they are there - just about every time one of my IL's visit to see LO, I start cleaning because LO is occupied and I can then get the dishwasher loaded or laundry folded. 

    Your job will be to take care of your baby... but don't forget to take care of yourself too!  There's no harm in putting LO in a bouncy seat or swing to keep them occupied while you get a shower - if it makes you feel better, just put the bouncy seat or swing in the bathroom where you're showering.  Sometimes a good hot shower will help take the edge off when you've been up the majority of the night with LO.  If you have someone who can watch LO for a little bit while you run to the grocery or go get a bite to eat at a restraunt by yourself for a bit, take advantage of the situation and get some time to yourself. 

     So there's this boy. He kinda stole my heart. He calls me "Mom"

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  • Can one of the grandparents come to appointments with you? I also lived near my parents and in laws and they were great. My mom came to every appointment my husband missed (all but 3 of them) and I had my parents, in-laws, and my grandma come to the ultrasound to find out the sex. My father-in-law held his laptop up to the screen so my husband could see on skype.

    I hate asking for help, but it feels so much better when I do. Especially when I'm feeling depressed about him missing everything with his baby.

    HTH

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