I assume if you’re reading this article that your husband has recently joined the Army or is at least thinking about it. In our case, my husband had picked almost every major in the book from the medical field to culinary arts to criminal justice. He was just never able to find what he wanted to do. He came home one day and said, “I’m thinking about joining the Army.” I just nodded, thinking it would pass in a few days. A few days later he told me he had talked to an Army recruiter and a few days after that he had a date set up for MEPS. At first I was a little shocked, then I set out to find all of the information I could.
Where Should You Look For Army Information?
So as a soon to be Army wife, where do you go for information? Your husband’s Army recruiter should be your first stop. In most cases, the recruiter will likely ask you, as the soon to be Army wife, to join in on one of their meetings. They are very aware of the fact that the wife can have a significant influence over whether or not he joins so they try to establish rapport in the beginning.
My husband had a female recruiter who gave us her home phone number and told me to call any time I had questions. While I tried not to bother her at home, I did bombard her with questions when we met. Ask them everything your little heart desires to know. This is the one time that you can ask whatever you want.
Ask the Right Questions
But, I will warn you to not completely trust everything the recruiter tells you. Now, this is in no way insinuating the Army recruiter is going to lie to you. But, as future Army wives, we have a tendency to hear what we want to hear. Try to be as open as possible, no matter if the answer is what you wanted to hear or not. As much as possible, ask specific questions. If you ask “Will I have contact with my husband during training?”, the answer will be yes. If you ask “How often and what kind of contact will I have with my husband while he’s in training?”, you will get a more realistic response.
Double Check the Information
Personally, I always visited www.goarmy.com and logged into their chat and asked the same questions I asked the recruiter. This way if there was a difference in the answer, I could address it then. I always felt the Army recruiters online were totally upfront because they have no stake in my husband.
The Eye Opening Conversation
One thing my husband’s recruiter was very upfront with me about was telling me that it was no easy job to be the spouse of a soldier, particularly with the career path my husband was choosing. She told me it would be hard, there would be days when I wanted him to quit, days when I questioned why we ever did this and days when I would just want to give up. But she said the one thing that needs to remain constant no matter what you are feeling is your support for him. He needs to know that you support him 100% and then some. While he is in training, that is his focus. If you try to remind him that you’re #1 and get his focus on you, his training will suffer.
That was a very eye opening conversation for me that gave me a lot to think about and a lot to talk about with my husband. In many ways you, as an Army wife, are joining the military too. The military is one of the few jobs that someone can choose that involves the entire family day in and day out. I took that conversation to heart and later learned that she was right on target. It helped to be prepared.
Utilize the services of your husband’s Army recruiter. That is why they are there. If you have questions, if you want clarification, if he wants a certain contract, it is your recruiter’s job to help you and your husband. Take advantage!