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Thread: Year Deployment

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    #1

    Year Deployment

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    So I am now 3 weeks in to a year deployment...he's still stateside so the super hard part hasn't even started yet, his phone gets shut off soon when he leaves for overseas and we'll just have the occasional Skype and I'm already struggling.

    We are not on a base. I don't have other military wives/SOs around, I do not have an FRG...we aren't even married! I'm just the girlfriend and I feel like in a lot of ways I don't matter then.

    Last night we talked for a couple minutes and he ended up letting me go quickly because he's in open barracks and it was loud and my kids kept interrupting on my end and he got frustrated and just was like "you're always busy, your kids always interrupt every 30 seconds, I'll talk to you later" I know he's frustrated and stressed right now but that sucked. I felt hurt that he didn't want to talk to me and I specifically had gotten a show started for my kids so I could have a couple minutes and he didn't give me those minutes...and no text nothing after when I know he had reception and was just going to bed...

    As much as I know he "hates it there" and wants to come home, I also know he volunteered for this! He's reserves and chose to put in to get picked up for a year active duty deployment. I also know it's great for his military career and could result in a promotion so I support that, but he also didn't ask if I'd be ok with it or anything before putting his name in, he told me after he got it! So I kind of lack sympathy for him "hating" it now. This is something he CHOSE to do not something had to do!

    I'm pretty much just ranting...I don't even know what I'm asking advice on, how to not over-react during a year deployment when you're not married? I'm just frustrated.
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    #2
    I'm sorry you're struggling with all of this. I had a couple things come to mind reading your post:

    1) I'm really sorry that your SO didn't consult you in advance about something that would undoubtedly have such a significant impact on all of your lives. I could see his line of thinking having been, "well, I don't even know if I'll get picked up for active duty, so I don't want to make a big deal out of it until I know one way or the other;" however, that's not the most mature/big-picture approach, in my opinion, and so I hope that the communication situation improves between the two of you.

    2) I'm also really sorry that he got so snotty with you, *especially* the comment about the kids. Like, OF COURSE your kids are around, what does he want you to do, lock them outside so he can have a phone conversation with you? It's not like he didn't walk into a relationship where kids are involved with eyes open. My DB has his 3 kids full-time, and while I adore them, they can be a HANDFUL, but that's just how kids are, and I knew that dating him involved having his kids in my life and our mutual life together. So, super crummy of him to dump that at your feet during his little pity party.

    3) To play a little devil's advocate about your not really feeling the sympathy for him hating it there because he volunteered for it, I'll say this...I hated like...80% of law school, at least. Oh so many meltdowns over it too; same thing while I was studying for the bar. I hated that it consumed so much of my time and nearly all my energy; I hated that I couldn't afford to travel or go shopping or, like, pay my cable bill regularly because all my money was going toward tuition and books. I hated the number of pretentious douchebags in my class. I hated a couple really heinous professors. But I love the law, I've wanted to go to law school and be a lawyer since I was 8, and even when I was literally in tears over how much I was hating life at any given moment during those 3 years, on another level I was still totally sure this was the right decision and something I was ultimately happy I chose, went through, and stuck with. Both feelings can happen at the same time. Again, just a little food for thought; it's possible this is what your SO is grappling with as well. Maybe thinking about that possibility will make it a little easier to bridge the communication gap?

    Sorry for rambling. I hope you two will get to have a more successful chat before he loses phone service. Keep us posted.
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    Thank you for your response! I wrote that in exasperation and frustration and while it's true it's not everything, I know even though he chose this it's hard for him, he's not enjoying those he's with right now and he's missing being at home. It's a difficult adjustment. And while my kids are younger and with me 24/7 his children haven't called him/won't talk to him when he's calling them so that's adding to his frustration I think. In all honestly he's always been GREAT with my kids, he's involved, helps with my older one's homework, helps them with soccer, he bought the cake for my littlest birthday party, he's definitely not anti-kids and not anti-my kids, he's just frustrated he can't hear me on his end (ppl are too loud) and then my kids are interrupting and he gets frustrated...which I get, it just hurt my feelings how it played out in that moment! I do need to extend some grace because while it's tough on me, it's also tough on him!
    We've definitely had many better conversations since then...and for that I am grateful! It's a difficult transition and I think part of me is just struggling with him not being around as much! But I know I'll make it through this.
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    #4
    I'm glad to hear that you two have had some better conversations since then. I totally understand that you were just venting about a snapshot moment in time, and I didn't mean for anything in my response to come across as a judgment on your relationship as a whole- we all have our moments that are not demonstrative of our best self, and stress of course brings those moments out the most effectively.

    I can't remember if you've said whether you'll be able to correspond via writing (letters or email) while he's gone- if you will, maybe that will be helpful for both of you; a letter or email gives you the chance to get all your thoughts down without interruptions or sidetracking.

    Regardless, I'm glad to hear that you're feeling more optimistic about everything today. And getting exasperation/frustration off your chest is exactly what this forum is great for!

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