New to the world of dating a military man (or woman)? Well, welcome to the club!
And, if you’re like me who never in a million years thought would be in a relationship with a man in uniform, then you’ve probably had to adjust quite drastically (and quickly) to all the changes — the changes that come with going from being single to being in a relationship, as well as the changes of being in a non-civilian relationship.
So if you feel like you’re in over your head with all these recent developments in your life, read on to learn about some basic do’s and don’ts that may help you with the transition.
Because let’s face it, military relationships aren’t always the easiest.
1. DON’T be too demanding of his time
Major reality check: he is 100% property of the United States government. When they say jump, they ask how high. That’s that. After all, he’s vowed to serve and protect his country, and you must respect that. But him not having much time for you doesn’t mean he loves you any less; he just has a duty to fulfill. Don’t take it personally.
2. DO learn the lingo
Abbreviations, abbreviations, abbreviations. The faster you learn it, the less headaches there will be… for the both of you. Trust me on this one.
3. DO prepare yourself for certain periods of being in a long-distance relationship
Deployments ARE going to happen. There are no ifs or buts, only a matter of when. So be prepared, but also know that it’s not the end of the world. Talk about it, discuss things beforehand, and make sure you have a good support system while he’s away. If you both want it and really, truly love each other, you’ll get through it.
4. DON’T get offended if he doesn’t answer all of your questions
Because sometimes, he simply just can’t. Other times, it’s because he honestly doesn’t know either. It all boils down to two words — work confidentiality.
5. (DO) be open to negotiations
…and be flexible with your time. As much as you’d like to talk to him everyday, sometimes it’s not possible. He may not have wifi or a local sim card, he’s still settling down in his new base, has limited down time etc. There are many different valid reasons why he can’t talk to you. Be understanding and just take what you can get. Settle for short but sweet messages in exchange for lengthy Skype sessions, or perhaps stay up an extra hour or two past your bedtime in order to catch him during his day time. At the end of the day it’s all about give and take.
6. DO love him unconditionally and give him your FULL support
While this may sound like a no-brainer, it definitely should be on this list. Don’t just love him when he’s physically there or when it’s convenient for you (great he’s home, time to shower him with love and affection). Love him even when he’s far away (probably even more) and let him know you’re there to support him 100%.
7. DON’T be afraid to be yourself
Being a Military SO doesn’t mean that you’ll have to live in his shadow. In fact, BE your own INDIVIDUAL. Make something of yourself and your life that you can own and be proud of.
Remember, you may not have chosen this lifestyle, but you sure as hell CHOSE HIM. So hang in there, get these basics down pat and enjoy the adventure you’re about to embark on.
Peace, Love and Semper Fi,