Being military spouses has rewarding experiences that you live once in a life time, like traveling, meeting new people, engage with military spouses like you and so on. However, during the transition from civilian life to been part of a military community there are many fears and challenging moments the military spouses can meet on their path. Recalling the first year of adaptation in my transition to a military life, I had to leave not only my family, but I had to quit from my job and leave everything behind to follow and support my husband career, and I will not lie this transition was not easy, however, if you are a perseverance person full of positivism you will overcome all these fears. In other words, it takes time, frustrations, and even a bit of sanity to keep it up with all these changes we had to deal.
Today I will discuss 5 things Military Spouses are afraid of, and how to conquer those fears.
- Loosing a job – Whether you decide to become stay at home mom, or try to find a job, this transition can become overwhelming the first months. If you decide to be a stay at home mom it takes time to adjust to your new life as a full-time mom. When you go to work you have the time to interact and socialize with your co-workers, make friends, and stay busy during working hours. Now, let’s say that after a few months you realize that been a stay at home mom it’s not for you; you can seek for help in ACS (Army Community Service) they have programs where they can help you building your résumé, and they even had job fairs during the year for military spouses. Stay tune to your military installations news, and ACS for these services.
- Language barrier – Not all of us are native English speaker (including myself) and this could turn into a nightmare for many spouses. I had known spouses that they do not even go to the commissary by themselves because they are afraid to speak English, or afraid that people might not understand them. In addition to that, Overseas Installations like Germany, Italy and so on, native English speakers could have difficulty with the language barrier. I had been 2 years in Germany and I have to at least learn a few sentences to survive on the economy. Whether you are in the States or Overseas check with your military installation to see if ACS provide ESL (English as a second language) classes. I was the teacher assistant for this program in Fort Carson, Colorado, and I helped many spouses during this transition, and the best part is that you get to know more spouses in the same situation like you; and this will make you feel that you are not alone.
- Deployments – Every spouse can hate this word just by listening it! First duty station, and first deployment it can turn into a hassle for newly spouses and not so newly too. The first deployment I went back home, for some reason many spouses find this helpful, in my experience was the worst decision I ever made. I had my two kids, they were away from their home, they missed their routine, bedroom, toys, nonetheless I thought I was doing right, I was not. This is a personal decision, and you can either decide to stay where you at, or fly back home and wait for your husband. I will say you have to experience both.
- PSCing - Great time to leave but you have to pack and you don’t know where to start! PSCing is the time when you said good-bye to good friends, you are wondering how is going to be the next place you are moving, how good are the schools, and many questions arise during this time. I will suggest you to take one thing at a time. You know it is time go, first focus in packing your things, get rid of what ever you do not need; make a yard sale! Get busy the first 2 moths working on this. If you have doubts about schools, and housing do your research with other spouses, but never take for granted their experiences! Each person has different lives and maybe what ever is good for your, is not good for them.
- New duty stations - Once you are settle down in your home, take a time to get to know the installation, programs and things to do around off post. This is all a routine that when you think it’s almost over it starts all over again. You will make new friends, you will start from scratch again, moreover, you need to understand that this will happen every 3, 4 or 6 years depending on your husband orders, so relax and enjoy every new duty station, some of them will bring you good memories, some of them let’s say was not what you hope for, but live one day at time and this will ease not only your live, but your love ones too!
Do not miss 5 Tips to tackle Your Military Life as a Spouse