Tuesday, September 25, 2012

10 Things to Never Say to a Pregnant/Parent Military Spouse

(R's birth with my husband on the phone a few days after he arrived in Afghanistan. Firstborn.)

10 Things to Never Say to a Pregnant/Parent Military Spouse:

1. Are you afraid your [deployed] husband will never see the baby?

In fact, yes, but thank you for harping on the obvious.

2. Your husband isn't deploying again, right?

Nope. The Army said since we've had a baby he never has to do his job again. We'll still be collecting full pay and benefits.

3. They're done in Iraq so you don't have to worry about being all alone with the baby!

That's right. Afghanistan is a cakewalk.

4. It's your first baby so they won't make him deploy with the rest of the unit. He'll get to stay back for the birth and be with you, I'm sure.

You're surely wrong. As are the 10 other guys' wives hoping Rear D will pull them at the last second. We birth alone.

5. How many more are you going to have while he's in?

As many as the clown car can pop out. Free health care, you know?

6. Aren't you worried Baby will grow up and join the military?

Devastating thought. I'm just so ashamed of what my husband does and all that our family stands for that I have nightmares about my child joining the Armed Forces. I hope Baby is a defense lawyer.

7. It has to be hard knowing your husband will come home to kids he doesn't really know.

You're right. He never asks about what Thing 1 and Thing 2 are doing.

8. What do you and the kids do while your husband is deployed?

Sit in a corner and poke dust bunnies. We have no daily lives while he is away. The times he is home and working 03:45-17:30 with ranges on weekends, classes and JRTC - we do the exact same thing.

9. When are y'all getting out so the kids get some stability?

You mean so we can pay for lesser health insurance, get a minimum of half the paid vacation time, pay for our own moves, pay more taxes and wait for my husband to use his GI and 9/11 Bills before finding a brand new career without any years in? I'm sure my kids look forward to it. We tire every day of this heinous enlistment.

10. Is your husband going to change jobs when he comes home to something safer so you don't have to worry about being a single parent?

Yes. In the Army, you are free to wake up one morning and request a completely different job with zero ramifications and it's effective immediately. I know my husband's Command would be uber excited that he up and took off to leave the line in order to fly a desk. It also looks excellent on his ERB.

Okay, so I derailed a bit and included "kids" instead of just "Baby" because I was asked more once there were multiple children involved, but there you have my experience with questions. 

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