Monday, August 16

Military Mondays-Post Deployment

Post-Deployment and reintegration can be a very tricky time. All the feelings of being alone and missing your loved one are coming to an end or a head as you may want to talk about the feelings and issues you each endured while separated. These feelings are then replaced with so many more. All the what ifs, excitement and fears of being together again. Faith Deployed suggests these 37 tips to help you maneuver through this part of the deployment. (I have highlighted the ones I find VERY important)

1. Normal has changed for everyone.
2. Be patient-it takes time to get into a routine.
3. Soldiers haven’t been on a vacation.
4. Expect your household to be different.
5. Keep life as simple as possible.
6. It takes time to re-adjust to one another.
7. Go slow.
8. Communicate feelings. Encourage them to share feelings, but give them space if they aren’t ready yet.
9. Anxiety is normal.
10. Discuss frustrations.
11. Accept that we are all different.
12. Take time to re-adjust.
13. Initial discomfort doesn’t mean your spouse is unhappy with you or the family.
14. Communicate ahead of your spouses return about radical changes in your physical appearance (once a red head now a blonde.)
15. Communicate about changes in discipline of the children.
16. Assume you’ve both been faithful to one another unless strong evidence indicates differently. Then seek wise counsel.
17. Be open about changes that have occurred in your life- spiritual –emotional- and physically.
18. Avoid the “who had it worse game.”
19. Be prepared that they may not want to go out much.
20. Try to avoid the tendency to overspend during this time. It will cause financial hardships that will add extra strain to your marriage.
21. Remember intimacy and sex are not the same thing. There can be an initial sense of awkwardness and plan may not be as romantic as you envisioned.
22. Accommodate-accommodate-accommodate. Meet small requests-like eating favorite food three times a day.
23. Listen-look-listen. Be aware of what’s going on.
24. Old problems don’t disappear. It you were having marital problems before he left, seek help.
25. Take time to share expectations and concerns before spouse returns home.
26. Soldiers sleeping patterns may vary.
27. Spouses may need space- let them have as much time as needed.
28. Let them quietly slip back into being dad. Don’t expect them to come home and immediately resume all of the discipline.
29. Realize we will never understand all our spouses have been through.
30. He will never understand totally what we have experienced as the head of the household.
31. Military spouses may have nightmares-don’t panic. If it appears to be long term, encourage them to seek help.
32. If a soldier doesn’t want to talk-don’t push.
33. Teens may feel displaced. They have had extra responsibility while dad has been gone. They may feel like they are giving up control.
34. Your children have probably been your sole focus while dad has been gone. Try to give them extra attention. Also, anticipate them (especially young children) not feeling comfortable sharing mom.
35. Dad may not feel comfortable babysitting. Give them space to adjust to new babies.
36. Remember reintegration for spouse and soldier is difficult, even for the strongest couples, try to focus on all the things you love about your spouse and not the things that bother you. If their habits bothered you before they left they will bother you ten fold when they return. Stay focused on the positive characteristics that make you love your spouse and let go of the small things that annoy you. They are not important. Having your spouse home alive and well is all that matters, everything else can be worked through. Don’t give up!
37. Just take it a day at a time and figure out where everything falls into place and move forward. It doesn’t have to be exactly like it was before, it can be different and better if you let it.

1 comment:

  1. I'm loving your Monday posts. Such great and helpful information. I seemed to feel strongly about the same ones you highlighted, too funny. Thank you for sharing these!