Advice would be greatly appreciated! — The Bump
Military Families

Advice would be greatly appreciated!

So here's a little background my husband was enlisted AF for 4 yrs but then got his bachelors degree so now he's becoming a commissioned officer. So this means in feb he went to officer bmt and now he is at tech school (again). Well there was a gap between basic and tech (13 weeks) and we decided to start trying for baby #2 ( we have a 2 yr old son). We knew he would be going to tech at some point but it took 6 months to get his bmt date and did not have tech dates at the time. Well we got prego first try and a week later found out tech school dates. He left aug 2 and graduates in March. Bb #2 is due jan.30. So here's my question bc he is prior service he can take off 10 days for paternity leave but it will set him back in training min 4 weeks. Or possibly miss birth and fly home the following weekend or drive him (8 hrs). He can only miss one day w/O getting pushed back. So if bb came on a sat he could miss mon but be back at school tues. If it were you would you rather have him take the leave but be gone longer or possibly miss it and be a single parent of 2 kids for only like 6 weeks. Keep in mind you would also have family to help with the kids and I have 6 weeks paid maternity leave.

Re: Advice would be greatly appreciated!

  • If it were my family, I would elect for paternity leave with a setback in training.   In the grand scheme of his career, your lives, and your family, a 4-week training delay is nothing, and will be worth it if he gets to come home and see the baby.  Especially if you have help to get you through his longer absence following the paternity leave.

    Remember that he can use the paternity leave for up to a year (I think?) after the birth -- it doesn't have to be taken right away.   So if he doesn't take it during training, he should be able to take it later.
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  • I vote for NOT taking the paternity leave if you think you can make it without his help.  As an Officer, you are not anonymous to your branch.  You make a name for yourself at school and it better be a good one.  Also, schools can suck.  Redoing one might be a truly miserable experience.  You knew this was a possibility so I say try to tough it out if at all possible.  
    iluvmytxrgr[Deleted User]
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  • I agree with Carnation.  As military families, we go through this suck all the time.  Maybe they'll let him SKYPE the birth.  
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  • You ladies seem to have the same mindset that I do, but talking to a lot of civilian wives they think I'm a little nuts. YES of course I want my husband to be there for the birth, but I also want him home ASAP. Also he is doing so great in his class and I know that he has bonded with his current classmates. I would hate for him to not to be able to graduate with them.  And its not like he won't see the baby until he is home in March, he can come home the first weekend after she's born. It will be a really short trip, but it's better than not seeing her. Well there is nothing to do for now, but to wait and see. I am PRAYING that we get lucky and I go into labor MLK weekend. He will be home bc they have 3 days off and that would be perfect. It's only 12 days early and our son was 9 days early, so it could happen!!
  • I vote for NOT taking the paternity leave if you think you can make it without his help.  As an Officer, you are not anonymous to your branch.  You make a name for yourself at school and it better be a good one.  Also, schools can suck.  Redoing one might be a truly miserable experience.  You knew this was a possibility so I say try to tough it out if at all possible.  
    I've been an AF officer for almost 12 years, and this has not been my experience AT ALL.  There is very little that one can do in training (other than fail, or cheat, or get kicked out) that will impact the rest of one's entire career as an officer.   He won't get extra recognition or an easier time by sticking it out with his original class as opposed to being rolled back.  And if he is distracted by the stress of having a new baby at home that he isn't there for, then he might actually do worse by staying in training instead of taking the leave when he has a chance.

    Having said that, you guys have to make the right decision for you and your family.  The AF doesn't get to make this decision, YOU have to make it.  Follow your hearts on this one :-)
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  • @Avion22 I definitely agree that tech school will not define his officer's career. While it does look good to have no behavioral blemishes on your record and good grades are nice, but like you said he will not get any recognition for sticking it out and not using the paternity leave. I am not concerned about his higher ups looking down on him if he does choose to take the leave, bc it's not like he is going on a vacation it is for the birth of his child. If they can't understand the importance of family than they are idiots. I'm more concerned with the extension in training. A new class starts every two weeks, so ideally he would only get pushed back 2 weeks. But the problem is the class behind him is currently full so he has to wait for the class after that etc... so the uncertainty just sucks. He will be gone for 7-8 months and we don't want to extend that if we can help it. I just don't know...but who knows little girl will come when she wants and may make the decision for us.
  • I don't know, my husband is in the Coast Guard which is very small. Not JAG small, but you get me. While I still think you guys need to really discuss all the options, I don't think it's that big of a deal, and neither does my DH--it's not like your husband is washing out. There is lots of career ahead of your DH, plenty of time to make a name for himself and plenty of time to be "one of many" in the pack. Good luck in your decision!
      It's a girl!! EDD 2/28/15
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