I recently posed this question on the Facebook group for Married to the Army. And a large majority said they met people online that they clicked with better rather than those who they met in person. For me, it’s a mixed bag.
When my husband first joined, we were the only ones on my sites who were living in Savannah. I didn’t have much of a choice as far as how I would meet people – it was either in person or not at all. When we were looking for apartments, the girl (lady sounds so old!) who showed them to us was the spouse of another soldier in the unit my husband had been assigned to. She gave me her number and told me if I needed anything just to call her.
A few weeks later when we were getting ready to move, I made that call and asked if she would be willing to show me around. She readily agreed. Now, I must say, that it was completely out of character for me to do that. But I knew my husband was deploying almost as soon as we arrived so it was a now or never thing. I swallowed my discomfort and made the call. She invited me over to her home with a group of seven or eight other spouses. We hit it off and they became my go-to group the entire time my husband was with that unit.
I met a few other spouses from the unit but I typically stuck with that first group I was introduced to. As time went on, other spouses who were living in Savannah joined my sites and we began to meet up in person as well. In fact, that is how I met Becca, who also writes for this blog. While I did love the girls that I was able to meet up with in person, I really love the ones that I have met online as well.
They are the ones who have always been there for me, including at 2am when I couldn’t sleep. There was always someone online who was willing to chat. And I’ve been lucky enough to meet up with quite a few of them over the years as well. Several people have questioned my sanity in driving (or flying) hundreds of miles to meet up with virtual strangers. But these people are not strangers to me. We have been there for each other for every possible event from the birth of babies to death of loved ones. We celebrate good news and provide a shoulder to cry on when bad news arrives. I know when I need something, I have a large group of people online who would do whatever they could to help me.
So, to answer my own question — I’ve met both and I get along in different ways with both groups. In my opinion, there’s room in my life for both. And I don’t know what I would do (or would have done) without either group.