When my husband joined the Army we had one 13-month old boy. We knew we wanted more children but as we quickly learned, we would have to plan it around the Military. We are not alone. Many Military families have to plan their families around Military schedules, deployments and pcs moves. It can be quite a challenge to try to figure out the right time to have baby.
Military plans change all the time. Deployments get extended or pushed back. PCS moves might make a couple want to wait a little longer. Difficulties conceiving can also make it hard to get pregnant during a small window of time the service member is home.
When we conceived our 2nd child we knew my husband would not be home for the birth as I was 25 weeks pregnant when he deployed. We did think that he would be home when the baby was 5 months old. He ended up coming home when he was 11 months old. I had friends who got pregnant on R&R thinking their husbands would be home in time for the birth. Because of a deployment extension they didn’t come home until the babies were two months old.
You can plan everything perfectly, thinking they will be home for the birth and they end up getting orders for a deployment or TDY. This can be frustrating for everyone. A lot of times having your husband home for a birth could depend on the command and if they are willing to let someone home early or not.
For some couples who are young and plan to get out of the Military after just a few years, I would encourage to wait to have children. It is so much easier to have a baby outside the Military lifestyle. On the other hand if you are going to be in a Military family for quite a while, it might be best to just go for it when you feel emotionally ready and hope that it all works out in your favor.
It is important to remember that when you are planning to have a baby in the Military, there is no guarantee that your husband will be there for the birth. That is just the way the Military works. It can be difficult to think about giving birth without your husband with you but it has been done by many Military wives in the past. I have also known wives to give birth while their husband is talking to them over Skype. Thank goodness for technology.
Making a decision about when to have children can be complicated for any couple, adding the stress of the Military makes it more difficult.
Have you had trouble planning your family because of Military schedules? Have you ever given birth without your husband by your side?
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