Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Being a Deployed Military Wife

OK. So I'm not a wife. I'm a husband. But I assure you, the worries are the same, the responsibilities are the same, the stress is the same. I'm a full time student as well as a full time single parent of 3 great kids. But biggest and foremost, I'm a full time deployed spouse.

All of our dynamics (deployed spouses and families) are different, but our needs are basically the same. We want to be able to communicate with our spouse that is deployed, however it is possible. If we have kids, we want our spouse to be able to communicate with them also. We knew what we asked for when we signed up, but we're not afraid to take help when it's offered.

Your first stop, if you haven't already, is to go to the Family Readiness Center at your local base. They'll have a list of programs and benefits that you can utilize.

After that, go here. http://www.iraqwarveterans.org/free_for_troops.htm and see what all you can do for your family and for your deployed Soldier, Sailor, Airman, or Marine.

Additionally, many states have extra benefits for families of deployed service members. Check your local state governments web page for details.

If you'd like to help out my family or my deployed spouse, e-mail me at drexxell@hotmail.com and I will send you the information you need. Put "I want to help" in the subject line. These same services can be applied to any deployed service member or their family as long as you know their address.

Also, don't forget to look into Service Members Civil Relief Act (SCRA)(Formerly Soldiers and Sailors Act). This is especially use full for guard and reserve members who have been activated as it relates to their debts incurred prior to being called to active duty (Credit cards, car loans, mortgage loans). Many times, credit card companies will follow the directions of the SCRA for active duty members who have been deployed. Call your credit card company and ask.

As for cell phones, check this out http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/06/military_cellphone_cancelcontracts_070628w/.
This was just passed in June of 2007. Deployed members can have their cell phone accounts put on "Military Suspense" for the duration of their deployment. That means no monthly service charges on their phones (which they can't use because they have no coverage). It doesn't effect phones you're still using at home. Basically, call your cell phone provider and see what they require to make this happen.

My many thanks go out to the organizations that donate their time, money, and effort to supporting our deployed troops and their families.

Special thanks and praise goes out to the deployed Service Members themselves and the families they've left behind. God's safety to you all and God's speed home.

If there's anything I can do for your family or for your deployed member, please let me know.

For spouses and their deployed members, just remember this "It's not worth getting into a pissing contest on who's got it worse." The situation sucks from both sides, but for different reasons. Remember that you love each other. Remember that you love your family. Remember that war has bad effects on people and don't hesitate to ask for help if you need it.

http://www.militaryonesource.com/skins/MOS/home.aspx will give you a lot of tips on how to cope. Additionally, they'll give you 8 sessions of personal or family counseling, no questions asked, all billed to TriCare.

Find the support groups. Get involved in your spouses group at your base. If one isn't active, make noise and help create one. Best of luck to you all.

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