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Thread: Just Joined -- Desperate for Some Advice/Support on all the Hoops/Obstacles

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    Just Joined -- Desperate for Some Advice/Support on all the Hoops/Obstacles

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    So I'm currently in a hotel in the same town as my SO but unable to spend the night with him because he has a curfew on base.

    I know other people on here are dealing with some awful things like death and not seeing their SO for a year so I hope it's not insensative to vent about lesser issues.

    I haven't seen my SO in about 3 months. It's been crazy hard but we booked this trip for me to come see him for a long weekend so that kind of kept us going. Today I flew out to visit him. Of course my first flight is delayed, causing me to miss my second flight. This wouldn't be a huge deal but it's the second time when I've been trying to visit him for a very short amount of time and have had flight delays prevent me from getting there. The first time was far worse, different story, not relevant.

    So in order to get to him the same night, they reroute me to a different airport about a 1.5 hour drive away. The original arrival time should have given us enough time to get back before his curfew, but that flight is of course also delayed, which lead to more stress. In the end, I made to him, we get back to the town where his base is with just enough time for him to drop me at a hotel and get back to base.

    20 minutes later, I get a call from him saying he'd been pulled over on the base for going 20 mph in a 15 mph zone. The cop or soldier or whoever called in back up and got a drug sniffing dog (?!) to come sniff his car. Dog apparently reacts abnormally so the officers now search his car also and of course don't find anything. Even though they don't find anything, they're now making him take a urinalysis test. They don't even give him a ticket but unfortunately at the base where he is right now, he's not supposed to be driving. He only did so he could come get me because my flight was rerouted.

    So now he's probably going to get in trouble for that and I feel responsible. The worst part (aside from the army trying to prevent perfectly grown adults from driving their own cars) is that the army is the only branch that even has this rule. All the other branches on his base are allowed to drive and even drink and he can't do either.

    It all just seems so unfair and sometimes I just get so overwhelmed with the unfairness of everything the military puts him through. It just doesn't even make sense and feels like they just want to make our lives miserable. I know that's a self-centered comment and I don't really mean that, I just mean that's what it feels like.

    Has anyone else dealt with all these hoops and obstacles they make us jump through? How do you handle it all feeling so unfair sometimes?

    Oh also another question. He's still technically in training but he's been in the military for 2 years now. Does it get better once they're out of training? We're really hoping so!
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    #2
    Quote Originally Posted by alwaysmissing View Post
    So I'm currently in a hotel in the same town as my SO but unable to spend the night with him because he has a curfew on base.

    I know other people on here are dealing with some awful things like death and not seeing their SO for a year so I hope it's not insensative to vent about lesser issues.

    I haven't seen my SO in about 3 months. It's been crazy hard but we booked this trip for me to come see him for a long weekend so that kind of kept us going. Today I flew out to visit him. Of course my first flight is delayed, causing me to miss my second flight. This wouldn't be a huge deal but it's the second time when I've been trying to visit him for a very short amount of time and have had flight delays prevent me from getting there. The first time was far worse, different story, not relevant.

    So in order to get to him the same night, they reroute me to a different airport about a 1.5 hour drive away. The original arrival time should have given us enough time to get back before his curfew, but that flight is of course also delayed, which lead to more stress. In the end, I made to him, we get back to the town where his base is with just enough time for him to drop me at a hotel and get back to base.

    20 minutes later, I get a call from him saying he'd been pulled over on the base for going 20 mph in a 15 mph zone. The cop or soldier or whoever called in back up and got a drug sniffing dog (?!) to come sniff his car. Dog apparently reacts abnormally so the officers now search his car also and of course don't find anything. Even though they don't find anything, they're now making him take a urinalysis test. They don't even give him a ticket but unfortunately at the base where he is right now, he's not supposed to be driving. He only did so he could come get me because my flight was rerouted.

    So now he's probably going to get in trouble for that and I feel responsible. The worst part (aside from the army trying to prevent perfectly grown adults from driving their own cars) is that the army is the only branch that even has this rule. All the other branches on his base are allowed to drive and even drink and he can't do either.

    It all just seems so unfair and sometimes I just get so overwhelmed with the unfairness of everything the military puts him through. It just doesn't even make sense and feels like they just want to make our lives miserable. I know that's a self-centered comment and I don't really mean that, I just mean that's what it feels like.

    Has anyone else dealt with all these hoops and obstacles they make us jump through? How do you handle it all feeling so unfair sometimes?

    Oh also another question. He's still technically in training but he's been in the military for 2 years now. Does it get better once they're out of training? We're really hoping so!
    Its not just the Army that has those rules. Before I got to the part in bold I thought to myself "oh, he's not allowed to be driving."

    I visited my husband (back then he was my boyfriend) once while he was at MOS school for the Marines since all of his initial training took around a year. They had all those similar rules. Unfortunately, they do treat newly enlisted service members like kids. That's just the way it is.

    Things will get a lot better when he's out of training and into the fleet. I feel your frustration though. Hang in there!




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    #3
    He's going to need to learn that the rules exist, and whether he agrees with them or not, he needs to follow them, or his life (and yours, by extension) are going to be very, very difficult. Don't speed on base. If they tell you you can't drive, don't. If that means your girlfriend gets an Uber, so be it. Or you ask a friend who can drive. Or you call your command and ask for an exception (and maybe get one, or not), rather than just ignoring the rule. Yes, it is frustrating and it can feel really silly and infantilizing. But if he wanted a job without those things, the military was a very bad choice. He's made this bed, and he needs to learn to generally toe the line or his life is going to suck. I don't know what his punishment will be for driving when not allowed, but I know the military doesn't give half a shit that his girlfriend is in town, so he absolutely could get restricted. Ignoring the rules generally leads to even harsher sets of rules and circumstances.

    They are treated like kids, but the only way to get past that (or at least some of that), is to show that they can accept that and toe the line. If they can't the restrictions get worse, not better. You earn freedoms and respect, and every time you ignore a rule, you set that process back. The military doesn't care if you have a zillion restrictions. it doesn't matter to them. So if you don't earn more freedom, they have no reason to give it to you. So if you want it, the only path is to earn it by showing you respect their rules.

    There are generally fewer rules after training, but not always. Currently in Japan, service members of any age are not allowed to drink off base, and until a week ago, they weren't allowed to drink at all. Anywhere. It sucks, but it is part of the military life. They can and do control all sorts of aspects of life that would be absolutely insane from a civilian employer. It can be super annoying, but you both need to learn the rules and learn that it is usually best to follow them, even if they seem stupid. Not only are punishments generally pretty restrictive (mean ignoring one stupid rule leads to 5 more stupid restrictions that are even worse), his career will be very short if he's the guy who is always doing what he isn't supposed to be, and he will piss off a lot of his coworkers when they get group punishments thanks to him. That's never fun.

    I hope his punishment isn't too severe and that it doesn't ruin your weekend together!
    Science always wins over bullshit. ~Dick Rutkowski
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    #4
    Flights getting delayed or rerouted is a regular occurrence not just when going to military related things. It's happened almost every time I've flown, super frustrating but part of traveling! I've slept in an airport and been taken to a different town too.

    I was shocked when you said he came and got you I thought it was going to by the time you made it he couldn't leave base and you didn't get to see him at all. I hope he's allowed to leave base and see you this weekend after getting pulled over.

    Please know there's nothing too small to post about just because others are in different situations doesn't mean yours isn't important! But your SO needs to learn to follow the rules regardless of how ridiculous you think they are or things will be worse. I hope you will update us on your weekend and that you two ended up getting some quality time in. Long distance can be difficult!
  5. "...now do Classical Gas"
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    #5
    The military treats a lot of their junior members like kids. Mostly they do this because a lot of the junior members ARE kids - they may be legally adults, but if they’ve never lived on their own before, never had as much disposable income as they now have...so many of them are fresh out of school that they still behave like kids. They do stupid things.

    If your SO thinks that this is unfair, then the best way for him to prove that the rules shouldn’t apply to him is to demonstrate that he’s mature enough not to need them.

    Breaking the rules about driving when he’s not supposed to, THEN speeding, THEN getting short about his drug test (which they ALL have to do regularly) isn’t really demonstrating “I’m mature enough to be trusted”. It’s exactly the kind of stupid impulsive shit that they worry about the kids doing, and that the rules are there to prevent.

    He needs to suck it up, and so do you. It may be annoying, but they’ll treat him like a child or an idiot until he demonstrates he’s not one. Right now, he’s not behaving that way.
    If I cannot move heaven, I will raise hell
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    Wow, so many replies! Thank you everyone so much for taking the time to actually read and your thoughtful responses! I really just needed to vent and this community exceeded my expectations of what I'd get back. Truly, thank you!!

    To reply to a couple themes:

    1. Yes, I know he broke the rules. Wow, you guys really made me feel guilty about that. I know that military rules are different from civilian but that's hard for me to get used to. I've never known let alone dated anyone in the military before. All my civilian friends think what they put him through is absolutely insane, so it's interesting/sobering to hear people say yes this is normal, deal with it and do better. Thank you for that reality check. I still think it sucks though. Haha.

    2. If we didn't break military rules, we wouldn't have even been able to sustain our relationship at all. When we first started dating he was at a different base with more freedom. Still, he was supposed to be in his bed every night. But he didn't have to sign in or go to formation or anything. So he'd just come up and spend the weekends with me. He never got caught. It seemed like the sargents didn't really even care to enforce that rule. Maybe we got used to rule breaking being ok? Secondly, technically I'm not even supposed to be visiting. He's not allowed visitors that aren't "immediate family" (which would include wife but I'm not that). He's also not allowed to even be in a hotel. So we're still breaking those rules. But if we didn't break these rules we wouldn't even be able to be together at all so it just doesn't really seem like an option to follow them =/

    3. As an update, he has to take a UA on Monday (not a big deal at all, he will pass). And he got phased down for a week, which won't be bad at all. I think in the grand scheme of things it's actually pretty lucky. He has friends who have gotten in trouble for less and has to do extra duty shifts or had pay docked and things like that.

    All in all. I feel much better now. I was totally freaking out last night, it was just a really emotional night and I just needed to vent. I really appreciate that I found the space to do that here and that people actually provided a great sounding board and feedback for that. Also just as a side note, I wasn't specifically complaining about the fight delays, I fly a lot and get delayed almost every time, so I get that it's just part of life and flying. I guess it was just a way to emphasize the point that if I was visiting a civilian SO it wouldn't have been a problem or at least a smaller one whereas the military made it this huuuuge thing.

    Anyway, all this to say it's ok. We'll get to spend our weekend together. I really admire everyone on here that is just sucking it up and dealing with this stuff in stride. You make me feel weak and whiney. Haha. You seems strong and I admire that.

    Thank you again!!!
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    #7
    He doesn't happen to be a linguist, does he? Or signals?
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    Quote Originally Posted by alwaysmissing View Post
    Wow, so many replies! Thank you everyone so much for taking the time to actually read and your thoughtful responses! I really just needed to vent and this community exceeded my expectations of what I'd get back. Truly, thank you!!

    To reply to a couple themes:

    1. Yes, I know he broke the rules. Wow, you guys really made me feel guilty about that. I know that military rules are different from civilian but that's hard for me to get used to. I've never known let alone dated anyone in the military before. All my civilian friends think what they put him through is absolutely insane, so it's interesting/sobering to hear people say yes this is normal, deal with it and do better. Thank you for that reality check. I still think it sucks though. Haha.

    2. If we didn't break military rules, we wouldn't have even been able to sustain our relationship at all. When we first started dating he was at a different base with more freedom. Still, he was supposed to be in his bed every night. But he didn't have to sign in or go to formation or anything. So he'd just come up and spend the weekends with me. He never got caught. It seemed like the sargents didn't really even care to enforce that rule. Maybe we got used to rule breaking being ok? Secondly, technically I'm not even supposed to be visiting. He's not allowed visitors that aren't "immediate family" (which would include wife but I'm not that). He's also not allowed to even be in a hotel. So we're still breaking those rules. But if we didn't break these rules we wouldn't even be able to be together at all so it just doesn't really seem like an option to follow them =/

    3. As an update, he has to take a UA on Monday (not a big deal at all, he will pass). And he got phased down for a week, which won't be bad at all. I think in the grand scheme of things it's actually pretty lucky. He has friends who have gotten in trouble for less and has to do extra duty shifts or had pay docked and things like that.

    All in all. I feel much better now. I was totally freaking out last night, it was just a really emotional night and I just needed to vent. I really appreciate that I found the space to do that here and that people actually provided a great sounding board and feedback for that. Also just as a side note, I wasn't specifically complaining about the fight delays, I fly a lot and get delayed almost every time, so I get that it's just part of life and flying. I guess it was just a way to emphasize the point that if I was visiting a civilian SO it wouldn't have been a problem or at least a smaller one whereas the military made it this huuuuge thing.

    Anyway, all this to say it's ok. We'll get to spend our weekend together. I really admire everyone on here that is just sucking it up and dealing with this stuff in stride. You make me feel weak and whiney. Haha. You seems strong and I admire that.

    Thank you again!!!
    nobody's intention is to make you feel bad, but understanding these things is a must.
    This sounds harsh, but if he isn't allowed to have visitors that aren't immediate family, don't visit.
    I have been there, most of us here have done long distance, my husband was in Japan for 3 years and I got *one* visit that whole time (went to Japan twice but he was on restriction so I couldn't have see him).

    All it takes is running into the wrong person to make his life a living hell.
    So stop breaking rules. period.
    You will have to make your relationshio work within the lines. Does it suck? yes. for a time.

    I would like to point out that it isn't always this person got in trouble (which if he continues this way he WILL, you have just gotten lucky so far) so this person will be punished. It can be, this person got in trouble, so let's punish his whole group. I would not want to be that guy. I STILL remember a guy who got us extra running in fire school, and that was just running, not restriction, and was almost a decade ago.

    So again, not to sound harsh or mean, but follow the damn rules. If he can't, don't help him break them.
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    #9
    Also, don't depend on friends to understand. In college I was told that I was lying about dh working over 20 hours getting ready for an upcoming inspection, because you know, labor laws.
    It's not the same.
    Sometimes it isn't fair, but it isn't a situation where you find out how to bend it to make it fair, you live with the way it is and become stronger for the struggle.
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by alwaysmissing View Post
    Wow, so many replies! Thank you everyone so much for taking the time to actually read and your thoughtful responses! I really just needed to vent and this community exceeded my expectations of what I'd get back. Truly, thank you!!

    To reply to a couple themes:

    1. Yes, I know he broke the rules. Wow, you guys really made me feel guilty about that. I know that military rules are different from civilian but that's hard for me to get used to. I've never known let alone dated anyone in the military before. All my civilian friends think what they put him through is absolutely insane, so it's interesting/sobering to hear people say yes this is normal, deal with it and do better. Thank you for that reality check. I still think it sucks though. Haha.

    2. If we didn't break military rules, we wouldn't have even been able to sustain our relationship at all. When we first started dating he was at a different base with more freedom. Still, he was supposed to be in his bed every night. But he didn't have to sign in or go to formation or anything. So he'd just come up and spend the weekends with me. He never got caught. It seemed like the sargents didn't really even care to enforce that rule. Maybe we got used to rule breaking being ok? Secondly, technically I'm not even supposed to be visiting. He's not allowed visitors that aren't "immediate family" (which would include wife but I'm not that). He's also not allowed to even be in a hotel. So we're still breaking those rules. But if we didn't break these rules we wouldn't even be able to be together at all so it just doesn't really seem like an option to follow them =/

    3. As an update, he has to take a UA on Monday (not a big deal at all, he will pass). And he got phased down for a week, which won't be bad at all. I think in the grand scheme of things it's actually pretty lucky. He has friends who have gotten in trouble for less and has to do extra duty shifts or had pay docked and things like that.

    All in all. I feel much better now. I was totally freaking out last night, it was just a really emotional night and I just needed to vent. I really appreciate that I found the space to do that here and that people actually provided a great sounding board and feedback for that. Also just as a side note, I wasn't specifically complaining about the fight delays, I fly a lot and get delayed almost every time, so I get that it's just part of life and flying. I guess it was just a way to emphasize the point that if I was visiting a civilian SO it wouldn't have been a problem or at least a smaller one whereas the military made it this huuuuge thing.

    Anyway, all this to say it's ok. We'll get to spend our weekend together. I really admire everyone on here that is just sucking it up and dealing with this stuff in stride. You make me feel weak and whiney. Haha. You seems strong and I admire that.

    Thank you again!!!
    I’m not entirely unsympathetic. Truly I’m not. Most or all of the people on this site have had to spend time apart, and it sucks to have to do this.

    Even so, you two have to stop. If the pair of you keep doing what you’re doing and ignoring the rules that don’t suit you or don’t make sense to you, eventually he’s going to be caught, and when he’s caught it’s going to get a lot worse.

    They can dock his pay. They can dock his rank. They can put him under much stricter constraints than the ones he’s already under, as well as everyone he works with, and if this happens I guarantee everyone will hate him. Does he WANT to be his unit’s resident buddy-fucker? Because he’s going to be the unit’s resident buddy-fucker.

    If he has enough black marks on his service record, the effects can be permanent - disciplinary infractions that are severe enough or frequent enough will affect his eventual discharge, and benefits like his GI Bill or access to VA healthcare can be taken away from him based on that.

    It’s not a game. It’s not particularly funny or cute.

    We’ve ALL had to do it, within the rules. “If we didn’t break the rules we wouldn’t see each other” isn’t an excuse his command is going to give a shit about.
    If I cannot move heaven, I will raise hell
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