10 Things NOT to Ask a Military Spouse
I like to believe that people mean well. That people don’t say things to others with the intention of insulting, humiliating or offending them. But every once in a while I hear an anecdote about an overweight woman being asked when her baby is due or a fellow military wife being questioned about her deployed husband’s fidelity, and I have to wonder – what is wrong with people today?
It should be common knowledge that one should never assume a woman is pregnant. I mean, really. However, if you have no ties to the military, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt that you just don’t realize how inappropriate it is to say certain things to a milspouse. So just in case you ever run into a fellow military spouse, or me, here are 10 things not to ask us:
1. How do you deal with your husband being away for so long?
Let’s see: I wake up, I make breakfast, I feed the dog… Basically, I live my life. But it can be a struggle, and I’d rather not talk about how challenging and emotional my life sometimes is.
2. What will you do if your husband gets stationed someplace else?
Um, I’ll move.
3. Are you allowed to work?
Why wouldn’t I be?
4. I notice your children are close in age. Are they “deployment babies”?
Are you asking if I accidentally conceived my children having “homecoming sex” after my husband returned from his deployment? Actually, we intentionally wanted our children to be close in age. But while we’re on the subject, would you like to tell me if your children were “accidents”?
5. Aren’t you glad you have free health insurance?
The price I pay for my free health insurance being married to a man who deploys to war zones for months at a time. I’d rather pay for my insurance and have him working a desk job down the street.
6. Thank goodness for Skype, right?
Yes… When my husband is able to find a decent internet connection, I love being able to see his blurry face for a few minutes, but do you have any idea how frustrating it is to constantly lose the connection? Also, a video chat doesn’t replace a face-to-face conversation.
7. Aren’t you glad he’s not gone for a full year?
Of course I am, but please don’t minimize how difficult a 60- or 90-day deployment is on my family.
9. Do you just resent your husband all the time?
Do you resent yours?
10. Do you worry that your husband will cheat on you when he is deployed?
No, I worry about his safety. Do you worry your husband will cheat on you at the office? Also, stop asking stupid questions.
A huge thank you to the military spouses who shared with me some of the dumb and inappropriate questions they’ve been asked!
Don't miss Lifetime's hit drama series "Army Wives" Sundays at 9.8c.