It is true that the Army does not officially recognize the girlfriends of Army soldiers. However, you only have to be “just” a girlfriend if you want to be.
Official Support Groups
Even as a girlfriend, you can generally still participate in the family readiness group and receive updates as long as your soldier passes along your contact information to the group. You can usually attend meetings and events the same as any wife of a soldier would. Note that there are some exceptions such as special operation units but most units welcome anyone who supports the soldier.
Online Support Groups
Reach out to other Army girlfriends online to form your own support group. On my Army message board, as well as many others, there are girlfriends of soldiers. You can come to the group to get information and support. Not to mention, there is plenty of information to be learned about the Army lifestyle. Just approach it from the basis that you will be ahead of the curve when you do marry your soldier.
Living with Your Soldier
It is true that you will not be allowed to live on post as an Army girlfriend. Until you are married, your soldier will not be authorized to have on post housing. However, there is nothing that stops you from moving to the area where he is stationed. You can just as easily rent an apartment in the same city as you can where you currently live. You don’t have to have a long distance relationship unless you choose to have one.
Even though the Army may not officially recognize your relationship, your soldier does. And that is all that really matters in the end, right? Be proud to be dating a soldier who is serving our country and don’t let your legal status keep you from providing support to him and reaching out for your own support from other Army family members.