Thursday, April 30, 2009

When Does it Stop?

I'm starting to feel better, slowly but surely. All this time laying around got me thinking. That's never good.

I'm sure you have heard it. "Well, my husbands an officer."
"At least your deployment is only 6 months. I have already been through 2 12 month deployments."
"Why isn't your husband a pilot?"
"Oh, your Air Force, that explains a lot."
"I sure wish my husband had a desk job."
"I didn't realize your husband was only a reservist."
Blah blah blah, the list goes on.

So when does it stop? When will we as spouses stop playing this "trump" game with who has is the worst. Truth is, someone always has it worse than you. Your husband has been on 4 deployments? Hers has done 5. Your husband is combat? Hers is EOD. Your husband came home? Hers did not.

Why can we not simply support each other in whatever current state our fellow spouse is in. Maybe it's "only" a TDY, but your first long separation can be difficult. Maybe your husband is Air Force and her husband is Army, does it really matter? (Well, when Will and Sarah give us a hard time it does. Go Air Force!)

Just like in every other factor we can't control, we need to respect the differences. Differences that do not make us better or worse than another spouse. Differences that do not align with the level of respect we are to be given. We are all coming to the table with different experience and strengths. Should someone not be allowed at the table at all simply because their story doesn't align with yours? I think not.

We do not wear rank. (Okay, most of us. Unless you have the purse.) We do not have patches. When will wives stop the attempt to wear their husbands service as a badge? Yes, we should all be proud. Truth is, we still have not earned the right to wear the uniform, but they have.

So I'm stopping it here. Now. Let it go. We are all in this together. Sometimes this life sucks, sometimes it's great. The cool thing is? We have a built in group of other wives who understand us. Who can help us. Stop the trump game and just be satisfied. Just be.

33 comments:

Tania said...

Thank you for writing this! I think I'd be really annoyed if I heard anything like that. I personally haven't. We all need to support one another!

On another note, I really don't like when I hear other milspouses talking trash about civilians whining about week long absences from their spouses. It just makes you sound bitter!

Allison aka HaselBride said...

I really appreciate this post because this is how I feel about other military wives on a daily basis. I am ALWAYS saying this to my husband because it is like we don't want to support each other. We just want to hate one another for silly things and it is ridiculous. We are ALL far away from our friends and family. We are ALL living in new places. We are ALL in this together. I just have to remind myself that sometimes women are our own worst enemies.

Sarah said...

It's all true. So ridiculous- I think most of the time the wives who insist on being like that need a hobby they can call their own. Being so proud of your husband is one thing but beina -bad word- about it is completely different. But seriously... Go Army! :-p

. Becca . said...

Totally agree with you, of course.

Girls are always looking for something to one up each other on, and that makes me crazy.

Amber said...

well said! I've been getting a lot of crap about my husband's deployment lengths these days, glad to know someone gets it! (even if you are an Air Force wife hehe)

Kate Craig said...

I like this post. It applies to so many areas of life, too.

A friend was asking me about when I would see my husband again and she kind of sheepishly said,"I hate it when my husband's gone one night." My reaction was, "Of course! After 2 months, one night still sounds just as yucky to me." Separation is always separation. Hard stuff is always hard stuff! I get embarassed when people treat me like I'm doing something special. I'm sure they all could do it too if they had to.

Oh, and the pilot thing always makes me laugh. Sometimes I give up on trying to explain that it's not every man's goal in life to be a pilot and I just say... Oh, he doesn't have 20/20 vision.

Beth said...

So true! We may not know exactly what it is like to walk in the "shoes" of a fellow military wife, but shouldn't we be each others biggest fans!? When it comes down to it we are all women in love with men who have chosen to serve our Country! The branch, job, etc. may be unique to each person but they are all an important piece in a very LARGE puzzle! Thank you for encouraging people to remember what this is all about!

Allison said...

amen :)

Crazy Shenanigans said...

I whole heartily agree! I get really tired of hearing "oh this is your first deployment, well this is my ____"

Thanks for posting about it!

Alison said...

LOVE THIS!!

Jane said...

Well said, Casey, well said!

silver star said...

Exactly! I couldn't have said it better!

daniella said...

I"m picturing you on a podium saying all this while wearing your red stilettos. Seriously though, thanks for pointing out that someone else DOES have it worse. Yes, we have to deal with deployments and such but at least there's still a steady income, we're medically taken care of, and the value of FAMILY is kept as a priority.

On the contrary we could possibly face the other side where both husband and wife lose their annoying corporate job (because of this crummy economy), lose both cars, and eat canned pork & beans for 20 out of 30 days of the month.

Jaime said...

yippee! you're back!
and very good post. that's why i feel i always have to put the disclaimer on my deployment themed blogs... b/c someone always "has it worse" than i do, and many aren't afraid to say something that makes you feel like you're situation doens't matter.
you go girl! (and i just the finger snap & arm wave-snap-thing simultaneously with the "you go girl")

Cassie said...

I don't think it ever stops. Really. I have a ton of friends who are either army brats or married army guys (we grew up outside an army base) and when I talk to them they always tell me how easy we have it because my husband is Navy. or they make fun because the Navy is "the armpit of the military." It doesn't matter that he is a Nuke and one of the most highly trained specialties outside of the Navy Seals. He only goes out to sea 3 months at a time so we "can't complain." It doesn't matter that it is 3 months in, 3 months out, so that he is gone half of the year every single year for the rest of his contract.

I totally understand where you are coming from.

Bridge said...

Amen!!!!

d.a.r. said...

Welcome back, glad you are feeling a little bit better.

And this is so true. Yeah, being on your 4th deployment sucks, but it also sucks for the girl who has just been married for a few short months and is seeing her husband leave for a year for the first time. It sucks to have a 15 month deployment, but a 6 month deployment is no less dangerous or worrisome. And being in the ANG and deploying is no less sad than someone who is active duty.

Yes, they are ALL different. But, they are all still hard in their own ways.

Stacey said...

AMEN! I find myself avoiding gatherings and stuff just because of this game that goes on! Is it sad that I would rather be kind of a loner and live life on my own with friends who don't even understand military life than try to make military friends who will just stress me out further?? Kudos to your post. Hooah!!!

Mrs. Smith said...

Thanks for writing this. It is so true.

The Rest is Still Unwritten said...

Glad you're feeling a little better.

Katie said...

Even though I can't directly relate, this post is so right on for tons of women out there in general. Always trying to outdo each other with the better Coach bag or the Seven Jeans...

I hope you feel better soon!

Megan said...

SO true. It's like that around here too. :(

kd said...

Very true! It's like some people think we are playing some sort of sick game of poker. If they think you are showing your hand, they thrown down their Ace of Spades and say their husband has been deployed 93 times and spent 47 years in the field, so obviously your life has been a total cake walk. Over it!

J.J. said...

Nice post Casey....from one Air Force Wife to another. :)

Stephanie said...

I don't know why girls have to be so competitive!
Seriously, saying good bye for a week sucks just as much as saying good bye for 6 months.
I've learned the ones that are super catty typically aren't getting the appreciation from their husbands or other family. It's just sad to watch.

Leslie said...

Very well put!

Cole said...

Well said, Casey! Deployments suck - no matter how you slice it. Getting in a bitching contest doesn't help anyone... :-)

Erin said...

Glad you are feeling better! And I really appreciated this post. This life is not a competition contrary to what a lot of people believe.

Mommy to those Special Ks said...

GREAT post!!! Couldn't have said it better myself!

Hannah Noel said...

I'm not looking forward to comments like that lol. *sigh*

Puttin' On The GRITS said...

I couldn't agree with you more. I've been pretty lucky with the wives at Country's base. Although I'm not a wife (yet), we are all in this together and the reason the USAF can do what they do is because all of them do their job...If the little grunt crew chief wasn't there to do his job...that big important pilot would have some problems.

I'm so, so, so proud of all of them! I just happen to be quite found of one of the big ole rednecks. ;)

Andrea said...

Oh yeah. Sometimes girls/women can act like it's middle school all over again. I try to be as supportive as I can to friends who have deployed husbands because I may need their support when I am in their boat. Like next week. Blah! Summertime with kids solo. 'Nuff said.

Jessica said...

Im later posting but I also say thank you for saying what many of us feel. Too many wives waste time on posturing and one upmanship