Military spouses need good friends!
The military life can be very difficult sometimes. It can be a great life but a stressful one as well. Between deployments, long work hours and changing schedules, the spouses need people to depend on. We need to find others who get where we are coming from and can be our support through the rough times. Someone we can talk to when our spouse is not around. Someone we can depend on or ask for help when we need it. Someone who understands exactly what we are going through.
During deployments it is great to have your own “battle buddies” to get through it with. Other spouses you can depend on and also have fun with. It is very important to stay busy during a deployment and good friends can really help with that. You can plan weekly coffees or playdates. Create book clubs or go on photo walks. Your kids can play with each other and make friends with other children who are also missing one of their parents. You won’t feel as lonely and time will go by a lot faster than if you stay at home wishing away the days. Meeting regularly can give you something to look forward to every week.
Good friends are also great for when you have your, “I can’t make it another minute” type of days that happen during a deployment. It is nice to be able to call someone on the phone and chat about how you are feeling and know they know exactly what you are going through. Just knowing I had a shoulder to cry on during my deployments helped me get through them a little easier. I also loved being able to help others through their own rough spots. Military spouses can encourage and help each other out in many different ways.
In between deployments, is it nice to get together with friends and talk about what is going on in our lives. I know in my own group of friends we have wives thinking about their next PCS, others wondering about another deployment or what they will do after their husband gets out of the Army next year. We can share stories of giving birth without our husbands with us or how that PCS from Japan went. We can talk about our experiences at different duty stations and vent about frustrations we might have with our current duty station.
It might be a little difficult to make friends when you first move to a new location. If you are new to your duty station you might want to look around and see what activities they have going on to help meet new people. A lot of places have Bible studies, MOPS groups, play groups, book clubs and all sorts of ways to get out of the house and connect with other people. You might also be able to meet some new friends at your Family Readiness Group meetings. The FRG is a group usually made up of all the spouses from the military member’s Company although sometimes they have FRGs at the Battalion level.
There is something very special about military spouse friendships. We spend holidays together, watch each others children, grow together and support each other in ways we never even though possible. I am not sure what I would have done or how I would have gotten through the past 6.5 years of military life without good friends. I am thankful for each and every one of them. And although we often have to say goodbye to our friends in this lifestyle, we never forget the memories we made and the friendships that will last a lifetime.