Last Updated on February 22, 2023
Site visitors submitted these stories. Enjoy!
submitted by Lucky
My boyfriend is a soldier in the United States Army. Though I’m no stranger to military men (my grandfather, father, and brother were all enlisted), this is my first time dating a soldier. Curious about what I was in for and wanting some solid guidance, I sought advice on being a good Army girlfriend. From the web. Not sure how wise that was.
I’ve seen a lot of websites that list ten things an Army girlfriend should remember and do, and some of them made great points. However, in my own time as an Army girlfriend, I’ve come upon a few revelations of my own. What follows is some humble advice on how to cope with being the significant other of a soldier.
1. Get serious, and I don’t mean the relationship. Dating a soldier is a commitment and not one to be taken lightly. If you and your soldier are ready to enter a relationship, ensure you know exactly what you’re getting into. Do some research. Read those web pages and the top ten lists. Above all, talk to people who’ve lived it and ask them to be honest. Then do some soul-searching.
If you’re not ready to be an Army girlfriend and all it entails, break it off. You’ll be doing a favor to both of you. When my guy used the g-word, I hit the keyboard and called my sister-in-law (retired Army wife extraordinaire). Both gave me a wealth of knowledge I otherwise would not have had.
2. Get used to being alone. Soldiers work long hours that they have absolutely no control over. They work weekends with little or no notice. Bases are often several towns or states away. And your honey could be shipped out anytime, for months or years. If you’re one of those girls who always needs a guy on her arm, get used to disappointment.
The time he has for you will be dictated by someone else entirely. Learn to love a long-distance relationship. It’s not a bad thing. You’ll have time for your friends, family, hobbies, and work. Concentrate on these, and appreciate the time he’s allowed to have with you. My boyfriend is stationed an hour away, and we only see each other on weekends. So I spend my weekdays going out with my pals, catching up with my mom, and working on that promotion.
3. Don’t ask for the details. Soldiers have stories. A lot of them are funny and interesting. A lot of them are dull. And a lot of them are neither. Understand that these guys must deal with things the average person couldn’t imagine. Many of these are difficult and sometimes disturbing. And odds are, one of the reasons his time with you means so much to him is because it’s one of the few times he can get away from that life. So my advice? Don’t bring it up.
If he wants to talk about his life in the Army, be it the crazy times with the guys in his unit, the tedium of every day, or even the tougher times, let him be the one to broach the subject. My boyfriend and I have plenty to talk about, from video games to the funny cashier at the grocery store, and I never bring up the Army to any extent greater than asking him how his day went. And when he does let me in on the other things, I try to listen and not pry.
4. Be cool with his friends. If your man is ready to introduce you to the guys in his unit and/or regiment, it’s a big step. Men who are stationed together are often closer than brothers. So if you get the big invite to meet them, treat it as though you were meeting his family. Dress to impress. Be polite and respectful. Don’t cling to your man like a backpack, and don’t emasculate him in front of his guys.
Don’t drink too much, and don’t discuss politics or religion. And most of all, be friendly. Your man’s showing you off to some of the most important people in his life; do him proud. This served me well. Making friends with the guys who serve with my boyfriend made Army gatherings twice the fun. Bonus: Meeting their girlfriends and wives gave me a new support group.
5. Don’t be afraid to take the lead. Yes, we all know that a man who takes charge is appealing. But a military man spends most of his time having other people telling him where to go when to be there, and how to be dressed. Truth be told, it’s hard for them to turn this off.
That, coupled with the stress and exhaustion that comes with Army life, can make it hard for him to spend lots of time planning things for the two of you to do together. Now, this does NOT mean you should boss him around. But he’ll probably appreciate it if you share the date-planning. Choose the restaurant, make the reservations, and pre-order the tickets. If you make the effort occasionally, he can sit back, relax, and enjoy the evening you planned.
6. Your friends won’t get it. I’m sure you have wonderful friends, and this rule may not apply to all of them. However, in my experience, finding people who understand the trials and tribulations of being in a relationship with a soldier is like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Among my friends, I’ve had girlfriends who want to hook them up with soldiers in my guy’s regiment, guyfriends who ask me if he’s going to kill them if they flirt with me, and even coworkers who, shall we say, were less than supportive of the military in general.
As a soldier’s girlfriend, you’ll have to field many of the same questions and frequently clear up misnomers about the Army. Your girls may not understand why you don’t want to go out because you’re waiting for an overseas phone call. Your guys may not get why you can’t hang out until three in the morning anymore. Hopefully, you have a few close friends who’ll try to understand your new lifestyle. But be prepared: some of them just. Won’t. Get. It.
7. Don’t cheat on him. This should be a no-brainer. In fact, if being unfaithful is possible for you, I’ll have to recommend you head back up to number one and give this relationship some serious consideration in the first place. Needless to say, soldiers place a LOT of value on loyalty. So if your guy has committed to a serious relationship with you, he will most likely stick to that commitment, and he expects you to do the same.
Far too many of my soldier friends have had “Jodi” get their girl (you may want to look that up), and it’s especially hurtful to them. They live their lives by the ideals of responsibility and faithfulness. If someone he cares about dumps on those ideals, it is like a kick in the gut with a steel-toed boot. So if you can’t remain true, forget the whole thing and move on with your life.
8. Censor your life. This one’s complicated. You may not think it now, but while you’re dating an Army man, weird things can get to you. I used to love the miniseries Band of Brothers and occasionally turn it on in the background if I worked. Then, after falling in love with a medic, this changed, and it really caught me off guard. I was watching an episode, and it hit me harder than ever.
I went to sleep with the screams of “MEDIC!” still in my ears. And I could never watch it again. This will probably be true for you and even your guy. Certain movies, television shows, and video games were suddenly off-limits in my house because they disturbed him or gave me nightmares. Get ready to make concessions in this department for his comfort and your own mental well-being.
9. It’s the little things that say the most. This is true of any relationship, but it can mean so much more to a soldier. Be it baking him a batch of cookies to take back to base, writing him a letter (snail-mail) every week or even every day he’s overseas, or simply shrugging it off when he has to cancel a date last minute because he just found out he’s got an early call the next morning, doing little things that may seem insignificant to you will matter so much to him.
It’s making sure to text him good night before he bunks in. It’s sending him a funny picture that will brighten his long, hard day. It’s giving him a back rub if he’s been doing hard PT all week. These little slices of normality and tenderness can mean the world. My boyfriend does his laundry at my house, and before he leaves for the week, I like to tuck love notes into the pockets of his field gear that he can find later. The first week I did it, he came home with a grin on his face, and it brightened my world.
10. Be proud of him, and make sure he knows it. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Army life is hard. It’s demanding, it’s scary, and it’s painful. According to my Army friends, it’s also one of the most rewarding careers a person can have and one of the greatest things one can be a part of. This conflict runs through a soldier’s mind every day.
So when it comes to your feelings, make it easy for him. Be proud of what he does. Don’t pretend to be; be. It’s easy to do. A soldier is brave, he’s smart, and he’s a tough son of a gun. So what’s not to be proud of? Feel free to show your pride in conventional ways: a bumper sticker, a t-shirt, etc. But simply telling him you’re proud of him, and meaning it, will say so much more. For my first birthday, we were a couple; my boyfriend gave me a set of dog tags. I haven’t taken them off since. And when people ask me about them, I puff out my chest and tell them the truth. They belong to the greatest man I know.
So there you have it. If you’ve decided to enter a relationship with a soldier, congratulations. But be warned: it will not be anything like a “normal” relationship. Sharing your man with the Army can be a challenge. Strike that: it will be a challenge. As my soldier recently put it, some of the toughest jobs in the Army belong to the women who date or marry into it. Soldiers act. We wait. So prepare yourself; you’re about to embark on what can often be a trying adventure.
Is it worth it? Every minute, in every way. Each second I spend apart from my boyfriend makes each moment together twice as sweet. Each time I can make his life easier, his simple gratitude fills my heart. Love the man, and you’ll love the soldier. And truth be told, that’s all you need to know.
submitted by Paige
My name is Paige. I am currently dating a soldier. His name is Eric, we’ve been together for almost two years, and I’ve known he wanted to become a soldier since the day we started dating.
When we first got together, I was very skeptical about dating a guy who would leave me to start his career. I always imagined dating someone who would go to college, and I would see him on some weekends and over the holidays. But I fell in love with this great guy who wanted to serve his country. Going into this, I knew I wouldn’t see him for long periods. But I didn’t realize how hard this would be.
He has only been gone for four weeks, and it’s already starting to tear me apart. I haven’t received any letters. And I’ve only spoken to him once, for 2 minutes. I finally got his address from his parents the week before, and I’ve written him five letters. And still nothing. I know that it’s not his fault. Maybe the mail screwed it up, or the Army hasn’t sent them out yet. I’m unsure, and that’s the hardest part. Not knowing is the hardest part.
I love my soldier. But I feel like the Army doesn’t care about the girlfriends, only the soldiers’ wives, and children. I understand that if something were to happen to me (heaven forbid), he wouldn’t even know about it until someone wrote to him. He won’t get to come home or at least call. I’m nothing to him concerning the Military. It hurts.
But I’m in this for the long haul. I want to eventually marry my soldier, and he is my world. I will not see him again until January when his Basic and AIT are finished. But I will wait. My car is now decked out in Army logos, and I’ve written on my car windows that I’m a proud Army Girlfriend. I’m proud of my soldier and tell him that in every letter. I joined this site because no one I know understands how hard this is. I’m thankful for the support!
submitted by Perrie
Hey everyone, my name is Perrie or Perrie Leigh, whichever u prefer; people call me both. I am 22 yrs old and from the great state of Alabama. I am an Army Girlfriend and very proud to be one. We’ve been together for seven months now, so you could say that I’m still green at being an army girlfriend.
The way Bubba and I met (and lol no, he’s not some backwoods redneck, haha. I promise, ladies, but that’s the nickname he’s had since he was little, and it just sucked for the past 25 years) is a really great story; I think it’s kind of like a lifetime movie type of story.
Well, we met long ago; the first time we met, I was a freshman in h.s. Two good girlfriends of mine and I went to this guy’s house to pick up one of our other girlfriends to go out that night. When we pulled up, we got out of the car to go inside the house to say hey to everyone, and as we were going upstairs to the front porch, Nicole and Jami (the two girls I was with in the beginning) started talking to this guy that was talking to Kalea, the other girl we were picking up.
I didn’t know the dude; they were walking inside, so I followed them. As I went inside, I stopped to talk to Kalea to say hello because she looked busy with this guy. I said hey, and then she introduced me. “Perrie, this is Bubba, Bubba, this is Perrie.” you know the usual. I said, “nice to meet u” being the nice southern belle that I am and having been brought up the more traditional southern way, I had manners unlike him.
He was an ass, didn’t say anything; he said what up, then turned back around to face Kalea, so I continued to walk in and was like, what an asshole, and never thought about him until like two years later. He says he doesn’t remember this, and I actually didn’t remember this until we were at his parent’s house once, and he showed me his driver’s license from back then, and suddenly that memory came flying back to me. Crazy.
Honestly, I couldn’t rightly tell you exactly how we met for the second time; the time that was a better experience, haha. But you have to note that my junior and senior year was a whirlwind kind of a blur but a GREAT blur if you catch my drift, haha. He says the first time he met me was at a party he came to, and I happened to be there.
He says that we met inside the house, and after that, we stayed outside; just he and I talked the entire time and had a fun time just talking. Today, he tells me that from that night on, he had to have me and make me his; he didn’t quite make that happen. I guess I wasn’t interested then, or it wasn’t time for us to happen yet.
But there was one time I went to see him at a friend’s place he was at and had called me to come over. I was SO nervous I dragged one of my friends with me, and when we got there, I think I may have said two whole words to him the whole time. Haha, But we did talk on the phone A LOT! That’s one thing Bubba, and I can do. Talk and talk and talk.
But when it came to face-to-face talking, I would chicken out and get really shy. I dunno why, though, but then soon after that, he moved up to South Carolina with his parents, and really one of the last times we talked on the phone, he wanted me to come up to one of the beaches up there for spring break with all his friends, but I declined.
I’m sorry I wasn’t going somewhere far away with no car of my own, not really knowing anybody for some guy I really talk to on the phone and wasn’t that interested, so I didn’t go. He enlisted in the Army right after that, and we lost touch. I would get a phone call sometimes in the beginning, and then instead of a phone call, I would get a MySpace message ever so often and then a MySpace message like once a year, not really saying much, just “Hey, how u doing?” that’s about it.
He says I would never write back, but I’m sure I did. About 4 1/2 – 5 years passed, and throughout those years, I thought about him sometimes, wondering where he was, what he was doing, and if there could have been something between us, but I never dwelled on anything. I blamed it on being bored on MySpace looking at people’s profiles.
Anyway, about 4.5-5 years went by, and my best friend Rachel and I started hanging out with people we hung out with back in the day. At this time, I’m 21 yrs old and able to go out, like really go out, you know. So the people we started hanging out with and doing stuff with were still older than us, and they were all really good friends with Bubba. They kept in touch with him and whatnot.
I had heard them all talk about him here and there, telling stories they shared with him, but I never thought about it. His best friend kept telling Bubba about me and what we were doing, what I was doing, how I was doing. This started in December (I found all this a lot later), and then that February, we were all over at Rachel’s place having a game night, and one of his friends was talking to Bubba on the phone. Then his friend called me over there and said that someone on the phone wanted to talk to me, so I was like, ok.
I said hello, and it was him. It was the first time I had talked to him in years! The conversation didn’t last long; I was dating someone else then, so I still didn’t think twice about it. But it was good to talk to him and to know he was doing ok. He was all the way over in Kuwait, where he had been for 13 months out of the 15 months he had to be there, so calling was a big deal.
And I realized that I had respect for the situation of a soldier calling from where he was deployed. After the night we had talked, he started calling. He called me every day while he was in Kuwait, and like in the old times, we talked forever on the phone or well as long as he could when he called me. And ever since then, we’ve never gone a day without talking to each other.
He finally returned home in April, and he had a four-day pass, so he took it to come to Alabama to see me for one day lol, and it was the best day of my life! He went back to El Paso for the rest of the month, and I counted down the days when he was coming back for a 30-day leave in May.
It finally came, and it was wonderful! We went to Florida for seven days and went up to his parents in South Carolina for a weekend, and the rest of the time, he stayed with me at my house. We never left each other’s side, and from there on, I knew that I was and am so deeply in love with this boy, and I knew and felt that he felt the same way about me; I’ve never doubted that.
Since then, we’ve been very fortunate to at least see each other once a month for about three days at a time. We make the most out of the time we can have together; it brings us closer and makes us realize just how much we mean to each other and how much we want to work and how much we one day wants to be able to fall asleep with each other and wake with each other every night and every day.
That’s my one wish, and I hope it’ll happen one day. He asked me to marry him on Sept 19 while I was at work lol I was like, what in the world haha he told me that he couldn’t hold it in anymore, and it just busted out of him, and of course, I said yes 🙂 But there is no date just yet. I want to be together for about a year before we get married.
I am very, very excited though I can’t wait! While he was in Kuwait, he reenlisted for another four years, so I know ill be getting very acquainted with the Army and how everything works. To tell the truth, I’m actually looking forward to moving to El Paso with my honey, of course. Still, I’m looking forward to meeting new people, making friends with all the Army wives and girlfriends, meeting all his buddies he talks about, and having this whole new life to experience and being able to experience it and start a new life with the love of my life.
Things that I have learned and figured out so far about being an Army Girlfriend:
~Trust him…trust him that when he says he loves you, and only you, believe that he means it. When he goes out with his buddies, don’t think about how all these girls may be throwing themselves at him or hitting on him; trust him to know that if that happens, he will walk away or call you or say that he is taken and not interested because he is thinking the same thing when you go out with your friends
~Be understanding…. understand why he has to do certain things sometimes and cannot make time for you. I’ve learned that the Army comes first, and I come second. Be understanding when he talks to you, and he’s short and not very talkative like usual. Remember that he has a lot on his plate, and people expect and depend on him to complete certain tasks. It can be very stressful but remember he doesn’t mean it, and it’s nothing to you.
~Make the most of what you have….. make the best out of what you can have with him when he’s not with you. Come up with ways of how you two can be close without being able actually to be with each other. What we came up with is movie night. It may sound a bit crazy to you, but it’s great, really. We’ll rent the movie, watch it together, and stay on the phone the entire time during it. We’ve just recently started this, and we really enjoy it because it gives us the feeling of being together. I recommend this idea to anyone with a loved one that is far away.
~ Keep yourself busy….if you keep yourself busy, you won’t think about it so much. Start a hobby. Start working out so you’ll have a bangin’ body when he returns! That’s what I’m doing. Work on a project at the house or for your career, do something positive for yourself that will benefit you, so your focus is elsewhere, and you can gain from it by showing him that you are ok to be by yourself. He doesn’t have to worry much about leaving you alone because he will know that you have your own thing and can handle yourself too.
~ The most important is LOVE!……love conquers everything! Love can endure anything, whatever the situation may be. If you truly love one another and want to be with each other, there is no doubt that y’all will be able to make it through this. Love is patient; love is kind; love is not jealous; love is understanding; love forgives; love is him, and to him, you are love.
It’s very hard to be an army girlfriend. I didn’t know exactly what I was getting myself into until I was put into situations, and then I had to go on with how I felt and believed I should react and handle myself. I haven’t really had anyone to talk to except my mom, and I believe she knows somewhat of what I am feeling because my dad is a firefighter, so I’m very grateful to have her and to be able to talk to her.
I’ve only broken down once to bubba about how hard it has been on me and being so far away from each other, and I feel terrible about it because I know it just made everything worse for him. I remember his voice changing into something I’d never heard, like a scared, worried tone. I guess it would be something like that if you had to describe it, but really you can’t.
I didn’t mean to do it. It just happened, but I make sure that I keep my crying and my weaknesses to myself now, putting them to the side and reminding myself that I will be fine and God wouldn’t give me anything I can not handle. I think this is the greatest test he has put me through because the reward is so worth it.
I wish all army girlfriends the best, and remember; this experience strengthens the bond and relationship between you and your man. You should feel privileged that he chose you and that he believes and has faith in you that you are that rare breed of a woman. It takes a certain type of woman to be able to handle this; a very strong independent assured woman, and that is what your man thinks of you.
I think it’s great that Bubba sees that in me it makes me feel better about myself and wants to go farther in my life and our life together. Thank you for letting me share my story with y’all sorry I didn’t figure it would be this long. I guess I had much more to say than I thought.
Good luck to all y’all Army Girlfriends thanks again
I’m so glad to find this site that supports wives, girlfriends, and fiancées!
submitted by Sam
I started dating my soldier Kyle when I was 17 & he was 19. Joining the army was something he occasionally thought of. We had been together for 2.5 years when one day, he said he was seriously thinking about it. I instantly started crying. That night we went to dinner to further discuss it & I cried in the restaurant the whole time! We talked about waiting a year after he joined to get married. He took a practice test the next day & was sworn in the next month. It happened fast!!
At first, I will admit I was not the most supportive. I cried every day & worried about what would happen to us. He’s my first real love & the thought of him being gone seemed more than I could handle some days. He delayed entry because he promised to spend my birthday with me. So I had to get used to the thought of him being gone from January to July. He was supposed to leave in April, but his recruiter wasn’t the best!
The morning he left was surreal. He called me one last time from his cell to wake me up & tell me he loved me. I met his family at
the recruiting station. His bus was scheduled to pick him up at 11. He brought me a stuffed tiger he’d had forever to keep. I tried to be as
strong as I could but broke down. I promised to attend his BCT graduation to help break up the time until the Christmas exodus.
He left fast! The bus came & they were off! I’d thought for months of what I would say to him before he left, but the recruiters were yelling at them to get on. He called me before he got on the plane to tell me he loved me. Ten days later, he called me for the first time to tell me he had arrived at FLW & wanted to know if I’d marry him!! Of course, I said yes!
After that, I got a call every Sunday for about 15-20 mins. (he got longer but also called his family). I sent him letters every day & I
got about 3-4 a week. Basic went by fast! The week before his graduation, I got his name tag from his ACUs! That meant the world to
me! His sister & I flew from California to Missouri for one day! His graduation ceremony was amazing. I told his sister, “you’ll never
forget the moment you first see him in his uniform!” I was right! He looked so handsome!
We got from 10-8 for family time. I was nervous he might be different, but nope! It was the same Kyle! Just more respectful. Saying goodbye after not seeing him for ten weeks & seeing him for a day was rough!! Once he got to GA for AIT, they were allowed
cell phones, which helped! I get to talk to him every day & they are pretty much free on weekends. I love getting picture mail with him in
his uniform! It makes me so proud!
Here are a few tips from my experience!
Trust!!! Trust that your soldier is way too busy/exhausted to be cheating. So don’t worry!
Be supportive!! He’s about to do something few people have the courage & the selflessness to do!
Stay close to his family! I hung out with his mom & sister a lot. It’s great to hear embarrassing stories!!
Know that depending on his MOS, he can’t tell you much. Here’s what your conversation might sound like, “how was your day?” “fine.” “what’d you learn?” “Nothing”
Hope those helped some of you! Stay strong!!
submitted by Sarah
As you can tell, my soldier just left for OSUT, so my story is more about staying sane when he leaves, and you are only dating him.:)
Tips for dating a soldier: Encouragement, encouragement, encouragement! Deciding to join the army can be a difficult decision (especially if he has a significant other). He wants to hear that you support him. He knows how hard it will be when you are away from each other, so I tried to stay off of that subject until it got to within a week of him leaving.
– Challenges in dating a soldier: Obviously,- not always being together. People always seem to bring that up, and no, it’s not fun, but that’s part of the army! Before he leaves, he will probably be really anxious; mine was, but remind him that it will go by fast once he’s gone.
– Tips for staying connected: ALWAYS keep your phone with you on the highest volume possible! He will call at random unexpected times. And trust me, it’s awful when you miss a phone call.
– How to deal with people who say you shouldn’t deal with the separation: I get this one a lot, not in those words necessarily. I get the “I could never deal with that.” or “How can you deal with that if you aren’t even married yet.” It sucks, I’m not going to lie, but it’s easy to explain to people that you do what you have to do if you love that person!
– How you met your soldier: I met my soldier senior year of high school. We’ve been together for a little over nine months.
– How you show your support when you don’t live together: Personally, I decked my car out in army stuff. I have seat covers, decals, and a steering wheel cover. I also got a little tattoo on my foot of dog tags with a heart to symbolize that I love my soldier forever.
– Any other relevant topic!: I wasn’t afraid to cry on his shoulder before he left. He’s sad and has emotions too! It’s better to get them out together. Also, if he’s gone, stay as busy as possible. It makes time go so much faster!
submitted by Sharquarius
Hey, my name is Sharquarius. I’m 20 years old. My fiancée and I have been together since I was 16. This June will make five years we have been together.
As soon as I turned 18, we got a place together. He was two years older and had already finished school. He was always there to help me when I needed him. We were really young, and little did we know that all the hills we had to overcome would lead us to the love we share today.
My fiancée knew when we started talking that I hated the Army and that I didn’t want to deal with the stress that the army puts on a family. But most of all, I knew I wanted kids and didn’t want them to deal with the stress of having one parent around. He’s a great person, and I know he would be a great father. I wouldn’t want them to miss that.
I felt he didn’t care about me when he told me he was going into the Army. I asked myself how he could deal with being away from me like that. When I knew I missed him even if he was just next door. It took me a long time to forgive him. Even when deep down, I know he did it so we could have the family we want without worrying about money. It was just so hard when I was so used to doing everything with him or having my best friend there to talk to. I felt like my man was cheating on me with Uncle Sam, and I could not get him back.
But no matter how lonely or hurting I was, I knew I had to deal with it. Because I knew that he was the only man that could make my heart beat nothing but joy. As long as I knew I had his heart and love, I could let Uncle Sam borrow the rest. It is not easy to do, but if you know that your heart desires to be next to no one’s heart but your soldier, it’s more than worth the wait.