Lonely is lonely. My husband is gone for months; maybe hers is gone for two weeks. But guess what? He’s still gone. She still goes to sleep alone, just like you do. She still wonders what he’s doing, if he misses her, when they’ll celebrate an event once he’s home. So here’s the thing: stop giving us a bad name. So many women comment and send me messages like they’re APOLOGIZING for reading my blog and relating. They say things like, “well I know it’s not the same” and “not to upset you but I miss my husband too”. Like girl, miss your husband. I miss mine.
LONELY IS LONELY. And I’ve read so many articles about “10 things not to say to a military wife” and “oh please, don’t compare his two week business trip with my ten month deployment”. No, they’re not the same for HIM. But for us? That woman whose husband is on a tug boat or on an oil rig have real fears too. Capsizing, machinery malfunction, just to name a few. Why would any woman make another feel like less, when we’re all in the same general situation? Lonely is lonely.
So many military wives are on a high horse. First off, honey…your husband is the one who signed the contract. Not you, so chill out. Yes, we’re making sacrifices too, but nothing to what he’s made. So stop wearing your husband’s rank on your chest, and talking down to civilian women because, guess what? YOU’RE A CIVILIAN, TOO. My husband would be ashamed of me if I talked to the women whose husbands were gone the way some of you do.
Society today is all about women fighting for equality and respect. But you don’t deserve it when you can’t even respect each other, and lift each other up. That tug boat wife is lonely. That oil field wife is wondering why her husband hasn’t called yet. That wife whose husband has been gone for a month negotiating a business deal is still going to bed alone.
Just. Like. Us
For my civilian wives, here’s 5 things not to say to me:
1. “I know it’s not the same, but…”
2. “He’s been gone for 3 weeks *insert panicked face* but, I mean, yours is so much harder.”
3. “Not to upset you, but I really relate to the things you write.”
4. “I’m sorry to ask you, but how do you deal with the lonely? I know you probably think I’m a wimp, but I miss mine, too.”
5. “Will I offend you if I share this? I know I’m not a military wife.”
And for my sassy, high horse riding military wives? Here’s 5 things not to say to me, either:
1. “Ugh, she acts like its the same.”
2. “She wouldn’t last a day in our shoes.” (This one really pisses me off. No one can last in our shoes until we don’t have a choice. Shut up.)
3. “I wish her husband would stay gone for 8 months like mine, then she’d understand.”
4. “Don’t you think she’s overreacting?”
5. “Civilians just don’t get it. There’s no point in explaining it to them.”
Lonely is lonely. Heartache is heartache, and an empty bed is an empty bed. It’s not an exclusive club of loneliness that we military wives have. Everyone everywhere feels lonely; they feel hurt, and they feel empty. To my civilian friends, don’t be afraid to ask me anything about my adventures. I love sharing it and if my experiences can help anyone else, I’m down. To my military wife friends, think before you speak. Lift her up, even on a bad day when you’re missing your husband, and think that you would much rather be in her shoes.
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”