Things not to say to a Military Spouse going though Deployment

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The US Military is deployed in many regions of the world. In some parts they are underway as peace keepers, other parts are war zones. Iraq and Afghanistan currently state the largest campaigns. With the hundreds of thousands of service man and women deployed in those countries, there are just as many Military spouses* left behind. Dear coworker/Aunt Hilda/random lady at supermarket/civilian girlfriend and everyone else who wants to chip in their thoughts on my spouse’s deployment, I can sense that you mean well. So, read this list and make sure that those things you only say with that little voice that is just in your head – but never ever aloud to me – the Military spouse going through deployment.

  • I couldn’t do it, I hate being away from my husband^.” – Yeah, yeah, and I “LOVE” being away from my husband, that’s why I can do it!? RIGHT. Think again buttercup, I am doing this because I have to, because I love my husband and because (let’s face it) I’m just made of a little tougher material than you are. No offense.
  • Yeah, my husband travels a lot and is gone for several days.” – Ok, sweetheart, I know you are trying to relate, but really your minutes are my days, your hours my weeks and your days are my months. Nice try but, NO!
  • It’s just like an extended vacation.” – If mortar rounds, IEDs, porter potties, sand storms and lack of sleep are your idea of a vacation, you should totally join the Military. Go on, sign up! Oh, no? You didn’t mean it like THAT? Then how did you mean it?
  • It’s only 4 months/6 months/12 months/16 months!” – I don’t want to blow a gasket just yet, but ONLY A YEAR?!?! Have you ever been without the person you love longer than 2 weeks? Do you even remember what happened a year ago? I’m not Einstein, and time might me relative but a year is a God darn long time. Period.
  • He’ll be home before you know it.” – Back to Einstein hunny buns, every moment he is gone feels like an eternity, so no he won’t be home before I know it!
  • What will you do when he’s gone?” – You know sugar nipples, if raising our kids, holding down a hold (or two or more), taking out the trash, changing the oil in the car, sending tons of letters and packages isn’t enough for you. Then I tell you, that I will miss my husband every moment he is gone!
  • Aren’t you afraid he won’t come back?” – Uhm, YES!!! Thanks for bringing it up and reminding me again that my life could fall apart every moment. ‘Preciate it.
  • He’s deployed, I’m so sorry.” – Don’t be sorry, it’s not your fault (unless you have links to the Taliban you want discuss with me right now!). And please don’t be sorry for me, I’m a big girl. Give me more credit than that!
  • Why are our troops there in the first place?” – Not sure if you slept during civics, but the Military goes where the President and the US Congress see fit. Trust me, my service member is still waiting for the decision to invade Fiji or some other tropical island, no luck yet 😉
  • Why are you bitching, this is what you signed up for when you married him!?” – Wow, I didn’t know you read the fine print in our marriage certificate, you found the “though shall be without your husband 3 out of 5 years” clause. All I signed up for is to love and support my husband until the end. And even if I had known about this secret clause, it doesn’t really make experiencing it any easier. What do you mean? It does!? So, if I tell you beforehand I will cut your finger off without anesthetics, it won’t hurt, you won’t scream like a little girl when I cut? No? I’m just following your logic here darlin’. So beware, there will be bitchiness!
  • Do you miss him?” – Seriously? Are you kidding me right now? How about, yes with every heartbeat? How about I miss him so much it actually physically hurts?! I can’t sleep or eat, I cry, I live for phone calls and emails. Does that answer your unnecessary question?

Through it it all don’t forget that Military spouses are strong, proud and committed to their service member, no matter what life throws at them. So next time, if you can’t hold your breath. Just say “thank you”. That is all, that will do!

* Military spouse includes here girlfriends, fiancees and moms as well
^ husband can be replaced with wife, boyfriend ect.

Thanks everyone at My ♥ is in the Military for your thoughts and input!

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  1. Sarah, I am sure you have a very special perspective on this topic. My heart goes out to you and yours, especially this time of year. Thanks for all your sacrifices! Big hugs!

  2. Totally agree with this list, especially the: It’s only 4/6/12/16 months statement! That really gets to me. And hearing about my husband’s deployment is not an invitation for you to start talking politics with me.

  3. I so understand what you all go through as I did a 6 years ago before I lost my husband. But what really bothers me is when people are like I just hate all the drama and want my husband home. Look at me…I have no one…he was killed Christmas Day from a stateside accident. I tell ya it hurts more than words can say and I’d do anything have him here any day of the week. But life faces us with lots challenges that we have to go through in life n this happens to be one and I can’t curl in ball in an hibernate the rest of my life, I have to pick up and keep going for the kids sake!

  4. I love these! People say some of those to me all the time and i never know what to say. I just get all sad and walk away. thanks for giving me some anwsers to give em :)


    And yeah, instead of “The Santa Clause” its “The Military Clause” in the marriage contract, lol.

    And I seriously hate when people say that they knew how I feel when their hubby is gone. I’m thinking, “What I would give for Jon to be gone for like a week to Dallas or Atlanta just to work!!!”

    And my personal favorite right now is “How do you do this?” while Jon is in Korea…and the tensions between North & South. Every time something happens, I get phone calls and emails galore about what they heard happening over there. I’m like, “The news has to report something, so take everything you read or hear about at face value. If something DOES happen, I will let you know. Otherwise, don’t worry.” And if I worried about every little thing that popped up, I wouldn’t make it as a military spouse. EVER.

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