While I’m sure this subject has been broached many times, I have currently been taking notes of some recent questions/thoughts/ignorance that I’ve been approached with.
1. “Has he killed anyone?” Seriously? Yes, I’ve been asked this and I just walked away. Why? For a variety of reasons, but 1) it’s none of your business if he has or hasn’t and 2) I don’t even know because I don’t ask him myself. Furthermore, if you have nothing better to ask after finding out that my husband is in the military: please do not talk to me. Thanks.
2. Please do not share your opinion about the war, whether for it or against it. We don’t care about your opinion. It changes nothing for us–even if we agreed with your antiwar rants, political agendas, and redneck “nuke ’em all theology”, it still changes NOTHING for us. And seeing as to how we have a little more invested in the whole “war thing”, the best way to approach the subject with us is not at all. We support our husbands/spouses, they support the war, therefore we do too whether we like it or not.
3. Oh my God, girl! Did you see last nights episode of Army Wives? Bitch, please. I have never seen one episode, but I do have military wife friends that watch it for entertainment purposes, not factual purposes (and they love it). I’m not trying to take anything away from the show, but please don’t watch this and make false assumptions about my life. Please be smarter than that.
Which leads me to…
4. “I heard enlisted wives are trashy”. Do not make false assumptions of military spouses concerning their educational background or their social status. THIS IS MY PET PEEVE!!! Not all enlisted wives are uneducated and not all officer wives are educated. We are a huge melting pot of different backgrounds with one commonality: we are ALL military spouses!!! There are billions of people in the world: If you choose to believe what you hear before getting to know us on an individual basis, please find someone else to talk to. Oh, and you might want to check your sources:)
I just LOVE when other (civilian) wives say these next things to me:
5. “What am I going to do? My husband is going out of town for three days on business. I can’t be without him.” Bless your heart! You should probably go back home to momma if your husband is gonna be gone for that long. Clearly, you have no idea about how to be an adult. Try a business trip that lasts a year on for size, would ya? We won’t even add in the danger element to you because you might incur a mental breakdown.
In all seriousness though, when women say this to me, I just reply “you can do it”, because it is a big deal to them and I should be more understanding, but then again, they should know their audience…
6. “I wish my husband travelled more”. You need marriage counseling, ASAP.
7. “Well at least you get free insurance”. Nope, nope, and nope. We pay for dental. We pay for life insurance. Healthcare? Well, I could write an entire book about the healthcare provided to us (ZERO continuity of care, my primary care doctor changes between every visit and I don’t see them anyway–but that’s ALL I will say about that). Nothing is ever free. Write that down. Let it be your life’s motto.
This next one was told to my husband and I by his dumb ass aunt.
8. “You don’t live in the real world”. In reply, we both BURST OUT LAUGHING!!! She apparently lives in the real world though, because she has to go look for jobs and has to pay bills and raise a child. I’m pretty sure she meant to say the “civilian world”, but I’m not so sure. You see, here in the military life, jobs still have to be found, bills still have to be paid, and raising children happens if you have them, but BONUS: we get to travel all over this great BIG WORLD!!! We don’t get to stay in the comfort zone of where we grew up, where momma and daddy are just around the corner to watch the kids for free, where everybody knows your name…we get to actually go out into the REAL WORLD and experience it. Yep, never say this.
9. “Well, they signed up for it”…This is usually said following a “he’s gone again?” or “you’re moving?” or “he got hurt” or something else that should bare NO RESPONSE from someone that doesn’t know anything about the military. But, let me just say: Thanks for the reminder that my husband volunteered to serve our country and even die for it if need be. He signed up for it! You didn’t.
10. “You knew what you were getting into before you married him”. Well….we married before the war, so I really wasn’t ready for that and some people came in the military after the war kicked off and they were already married. Either way, I don’t think you’re ever really prepared to send your significant other off to war no matter the circumstance. Here’s what I knew I was getting into when I married my husband: A LIFELONG FREAKIN COMMITMENT–THAT’S WHAT! Till death do we part. The military life is just a ripple in the ocean for our marriage. Is it a challenge? Every damn day. Am I up for it? Most of the time, but I’m not about some weak ass excuse of not knowing what I was getting into. Vows are serious, you should take them that way. So if by “you knew what you were getting into” you mean “forever no matter what”, then yes, I knew what I was getting into, but again: thanks for the reminder!
11. “Well, I don’t get a paycheck handed to me twice a month”. Actually, the military allows you to opt for a once a month paycheck direct deposited to your account at the first of the month, so you can choose how you want it “handed” to you. I promise you my husband earns it (and some) however it comes. If you would also like to be handed a paycheck twice a month, please visit your local recruiting office, but promise me that you will call me after basic training and tell me again that it’s handed to you, not earned! I look forward to hearing from you:)
And finally, my favorite:
12. “I don’t know how you do it”. By the grace of God. I do it because I love my husband. I do it because he is my best friend. I do it because I support him and everything he represents. I do it because I made a vow to him. I do it because I want to.