Army Husband Experiences

Bill’s Story

I am not an Army wife.

The heading of this section, “Experiences of Army Wives,” is why I’m writing.

I am an Army husband.

Consider the stresses of the Army wife, loneliness, abandonment, and jealousy of their husbands’ freedom in their huge Army family.  Add the worry and the doubts about how important you are to the person who leaves so often.

Then add the simple fact that at least 99% of support is for women. Your wife trains with body armor and 50 cal machine guns, and you’re at home making sure the kids have food, clean clothes, and get an education.

I’m more “liberated” than most, but after a while, it makes you start questioning your manhood. You joke to others about wearing an apron, but you can’t avoid the embarrassment.

Who can you call for support? An Army wife? No – – – – – not a good idea for so many reasons. Even if you find another male in the same situation, men find it hard to talk about feelings.

Army wives feel more and more distressed as deployment time approaches. This is understandable, but it also happens to men.

But the people around him are less accepting if he, a man, shows how he’s feeling or, God forbid, looks for support. Of course, this is stereotyping, but you can never completely be free of it, if not you, then in others.

If there’s a point to this, it is: Be aware of the Army husband and his suffering too. Do what you can reasonably do to lend support if you’re inclined. And maybe think of Army spouses as humans experiencing much of what you do, regardless of gender.

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Clenton’s Story

Hello, I am new to the Army Spouse world, and I am an Army Husband with two kids. I was originally going to be the one to join the Army, but due to a medical condition, I was unable to pass the physical.

So my wife told me she would like to join and that this is something that she would love to do.

I tried everything to talk her out of joining because she was joining in a time of war, and she then told me her reasons for wanting to join: to provide our family with a better life and give our kids a better future.

One rule of being married to someone is to support and back up your spouse in any decision they make, and this was something she wanted to do, so I started supporting her and even helped her study everything she needed to know before she joined, I would even quiz her on the info we had been studying.

I got called all kinds of names, from Army Wife to House Wife, by friends and co-workers, and I would joke back with them, but after a while, it got old. But I didn’t let them drag me down; my wife and I didn’t make this decision to impress anybody, we made this decision to better ourselves and our family, and it has.

My wife and I had only been married for 5 yrs, and we had 2 beautiful children when she decided to join. But while she was gone for boot camp, I began to realize not only everything she had done for this family before she joined but also how much I didn’t do, and it was a big wake-up call for me.

So not only am I having to take care of everything she did before she left and take care of our two kids, but I have enjoyed it. It has given me a chance to bond with my children. I didn’t realize how much I was going to miss her, and it has not only changed me as a person but made me a better father and husband.

After a while, you adjust and get used to the change, but it is not always easy. My wife was OSUT, meaning when she left for boot camp, she didn’t come home after boot camp; she went straight into AIT, about 17 weeks total.

She graduated and was able to come home for Christmas for 2 weeks, then had to report to her duty station without the kids and me, and we had to wait in our home state until we got a house on base before we moved to her location.

Well, her first day at her duty station was difficult for me because I was so used to seeing her every day, and she wasn’t even able to talk much because of the briefing she was going through.

When I finally was able to talk to her later that night, she told me that they said that her unit would be deployed soon to Afghanistan. They told her that her first day back from training.

Yes, we knew it was a good possibility of her being deployed. Still, I figured they would let her at least get her family moved up there with her and her be there for a few months before deploying her, so I am needing some words of advice, and I want to know how other Army Spouses handle the news of their spouse being deployed.

I know it is very common for a soldier to be deployed, but this will be the first time for our family, and I am trying to find a way to prepare myself and our family for this mentally.

But it doesn’t bother me to be called an Army Spouse; I am proud of my soldier and will support her in any decision she makes.

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21 Comments

  1. Hey! I just want to ask a question. Do you think its a good idea for both spouse to be in the army at the same time? How likely will we be able to get stationed together if we choose the same jobs?

  2. I hate looking up anything to do with army, but sometimes I have to. When I look up “army wife” obviously it assumes the husband is in the army, not the wife. But when I look up “army husband” is assumes the husband is in the army again! All the posts on how to cope with deployments start out with “hey ladies” or “lean on your girlfriends”. It’s pretty offensive, as if spouse in the military can ONLY be the man. We’ve been married 10 years, and we still keep running into this problem.

  3. I’m a former soldier myself, and my wife has now decided to enlist active duty. I guess I have a slight leg up on most in that I know what to expect to a point.

    But I also have to echo the sentiments of the other men here…. EVERYTHING is for an Army Wife, nothing for Husbands.

    While my wife and I do not have children, there is still a HUGE adjustment for us both to make. I have always been undersized, which means I’ve always had to work very hard to either keep up, or surpass those in my groups. Now, due to a service connected disability, I have to become the “House Husband” as I’ve come to call it. I have to go from barely able to brush my own teeth, to handling the workload for both of us while she focuses on her trainings and job.

    The sense of inferiority is a damning thing that comes on really strong sometimes.

  4. I am a Marine Corps vet. And my wife just finished Army bootcamp I have been searching and searching for something like this support and knowledge about what I am going through it is very rough.

  5. Hi all, I’m writing as I’m off to the Army in 4 weeks, will be based in a different state to my partner. I’ve been looking for forums or pages that support the boyfriends/husbands but just keep finding support stuff for women. My boyfriend and I have been together for a year and are both still really independent, my question is for the guys, how did you cope when your girlfriend went off to the Army? what were your feelings about it?

    My boyfriend isn’t one to talk about how he’s feeling and I want to get an insight into what you guys think/ feel while us girls are away at training or being deployed overseas.

    Thanks

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