Active Army Question — The Bump
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Active Army Question

So a little background. Dh and I have been married 4.5 years, when we met he was active army, 101st, airborne infantry. He got out right before we got married. Currently he is an army reserve instructor as an E6. He will be finishing up his degree in a couple of months and is thinking about going active again, possibly as an Officer, if his packet is up to par, we're pretty positive it is. Because of some things I've gone through, my college boyfriend died very suddenly after being together for 2 years, I have asked him not to branch infantry. Though I know the army will put him where they need him. I know there's danger in all aspects of army careers but I'm just so scared of losing ANOTHER significant other. I'm also having a hard time with the idea of leaving my career I make a really good income, I'm the bread winner for the family and I'm proud of that... But then there's the allure of the army affording me to stay home with our kiddo... I'm not worried about moving around or making new friends... That excites me! I know I can handle time apart from each other for schools, etc. I know I am strong mentally as I have handled a lot of heart ache and change and have never been one to slip into a deep depression, etc. I just always think, "well, it could be worse!" And Unfortunatly, from first hand experience I know it can!
How do you guys handle the fear of losing a spouse? I know I'm in a more unique position than most... I just feel so terrible because the only thing keeping DH from submitting that package is ME. The second I give the go ahead he'll pounce, he misses the army that much.

Do the majority of you ladies enjoy the army life? ... I think I could ... I know I'm the only one who can make the decision for me...I guess I'm just looking for some different perspectives.

Sorry for the rambling!!

Re: Active Army Question

  • There is good and bad to military life just like there is with any other job. Its a very personal decision though. Its not for everyone. Since you are already married, I do think your husband 100% needs your support in order to move forward. The challeneges will be magnified if your not on board beforehand.

    My military wife life was sort of short lived. My hubby only did 5 years before being shot which led to medical retirement ( I still lurk out here because this board seems sort of slow and I like to answer questions if I have knowledge), but I did for the most part enjoy it. The friendships I made with other wives are some of the closest I have ever had, sometimes the military is like a big family we all take care of each other. I loved giving some of my husbands friends an escape from barracks life to eat a good home cooked meal and hang out somewhere other than the barracks. We had a blast most of the time. Deployments are of course rough but I was proud of what my husband was doing and felt the hard parts were more than worth it, but thats just me. Everyone has different experiences.

     

    hope that helps!

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  • I usually don't give it much thought because it is what it is but we met in the Army so it was already a part of both of our lives.

    But if I do think about it, I think in terms of statistics because that's the only way I can rationalize it. The army is currently something around 500 to 550,000 strong but due to get a whole lot smaller and casualties for all the services in 2011 were somewhere around 450 for OIF and OEF I could be off but that's close. That's less than a 1 overall chance but of course there are many variables such as job, unit, location, etc but that's getting more in the weeds than I need to rationalize to myself. It may not work for you or others though.

    I love the military lifestyle, but again, I chose it before DH and I even met.
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  • Most days, I love this life. I met my husband before he enlisted, but we got married right after he finished basic. So the army is the only life we know together.

    hes been in almost 6 years. We just got orders to duty station #4, and have done 2 deployments. I left my career behind at our last duty station to be a SAHM here. We've moved so much sometimes I forget what house I'm going home to!

    i don't regret a second of it though. When I think of all the amazing things we've been through over the last 6 years I am so grateful for this life and to be able to live it. All the adventures we've been on, and the people we've met. I wouldn't trade it for anything.

    if he is reserves, he could deploy anyways and you'll be faced with the same fear. I don't know that you can ever get over it, but during deployment it fades a bit, over time. It's something you just learn to live with, as bad as it sounds. As long as you're willing to work to overcome those fears I think you'll do just fine :)  

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  • My husband is Infantry officer, and we were together when he made the decision to put Infantry as his number one choice for branch (I'm not sure how going from reserves to active works in terms of branching, but I think they get the option to rank the branches based on preference).  I was initially scared of what him branching Infantry would mean in terms of losing him, but I realized I needed to focus on the time we have NOW.  I also found that I couldn't ask him not to do something that he truly enjoyed and really loves.  It was his dream before I entered his life, so I feel like I don't get to take that away from him (just my opinion).  I can't afford to think about the unknown, because it does me no good and it just upsets me and causes me to worry about things beyond my control.  So, that's how I deal with the fear, I just don't think about it.  And I know that's easier for someone who hasn't lost an SO, but I think you could get there too with time.  

    I do enjoy Army life.  DH works long hours, and I stay at home, so I do get lonely sometimes.  But, at the same time, I grew up with a dad in the Air Force, so the military life is the only one I know, so for me, it's familiar and comfortable.  I won't say easy, because sometimes it sucks, but it is something I much more comfortable in since I understand it.  I don't mind the moving, I just hate the hassle of packing and unpacking.  I try to look at it in terms of my husband having just any career that requires moving more often than most people.  Yeah, he works long hours, but so do lawyers.  Yeah, he'll spend time in the field or at a school far away, but business men and women travel a lot sometimes too.  I don't know, I just rationalize things in the "well, in could be worse" kind of way, and suddenly, it just seems "normal." 
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