My wife just found out today that she is going to be deployed to an undisclosed location within the next few weeks. She is an admin troop in the USAF, so I never thought this would happen. I was a Civil Engineer in the AF till I seperated in '99. I was desert bound 1-2 times a year.
They wont tell her when she is leaving, where she is going, or when shell be back. We have a 20 month old little girl right now. There are going to be major problems coming down the pipe line.
First one is that I work mid-shift, Sun-Thurs night, as an engineer in Colorado Springs. I was hired to work this shift and the company I work for is a real stickler for being at work for your shifts. The problem here is, obviously, that I cannot work midshift while I am playing single dad. We have no family within a 1000 miles of us. I am very scared that I will lose my job when I tell my boss about this development. We live very comfortably right now, but losing a 50K a year income will hurt us on a massive scale. We will go from a household income of around 75K a year, to around 22-25K a year. The job market is so tight right now that I dont know when I will be able to find a job
The other problem is that I am a full time student who is trying to rush through his MS before I go back into the AF as an officer. There is no way I can go to school, work, and take care of my daughter at the same time. I will probably lose at least 2 semesters to this deployment. It will set me far back, as anyone who has gone through a masters program can attest to.
I am sure that I will not be the last doper to post about a SO going off into the unknown. I just want you military spouses whose SO is in a desk job, like my wife is, to know that they can, and quite possibly will, be going off to fight.
Everyone get ready, cause its starting now.
I am very sorry to hear about your wife. It sucks being seperated from your SO. As to your other problem, put an ad in the paper and start looking for daycare now! You can most likely find some one for your shift. Good luck!
Good luck, Phlip.
There was, briefly after the Gulf War, “deployment insurance,” a suplemental thing, but that got phased out a few years ago.
You should not lose your job if your company has any sense of loyalty. The bills, you can arrange things with debtors. Many people did this, again, during DS/DS. Talk to the VA, thay might have some ideas for you.
Best of luck to you and yours.
This might be a dumb question, but the OP made me wonder. What happens in a family where both the husband and wife are in the military and everyone is getting called up? Is there a rule that you can’t take away both parents if there are kids involved? If so, does the higher ranking spouse automatically go?
Hello, Phlip. Sorry to meet under such sad circumstances. I wish I lived closer to you, I’d be happy to help out as much as I could. I live in San Antonio, though. thinksnow has some excellent ideas, as does Qwisp. I will pray for you and your wife, that you’re able to find the solutions you need, and she is able to stay safe and do what is needed.
I’m not sure of how they would do it these days, boli. Hopefully someone else here has those answers for you.
boli - Yes they can send both parents away if need be. With whats going on right now, I think we will see some couples get deployed. In order for both parents to remain active duty, there must be a family action plan on file. If you have no one that can take your child in the event of war, both members cannot remain active duty. It is true that alot of commanding officers over look this for some families, but I think those days are over. The reality is that anyone can go to fight. In fact, I am trying to get back in as we speak. I was enlisted and am getting a commision to get back in as an engineer. They wont even let me go back through MEPS without an action plan on file before hand.
Thanks for your thoughts folks. I will know tomorrow what she is going to be doing. Hopefully a time frame as well.
When I got out (6 years ago now) every military parent - single or not - had to sign a piece of paper stating that if that parent must go on deployment, childcare arrangements have already been made.
Yeah, I know. Caused some problems with single mothers I knew. I also knew of several AF members whose AF wives were sent to DS/DS while the AF husband stayed home. It doesn’t depend on rank; it depends on the need of the service. A med tech is necessary; a cook maybe not so much.
As for deploying parents together…well, I don’t know about that. I believe the military tries to avoid stationing family members in the same theater. However. Let’s suppose he’s a grunt and she’s a med tech. He’s sent to, say, Pakistan, and she’s sent to Spain to assist in manning the hospital there. They’re not technically in the same theater, so that ‘rule’ isn’t breached.
Phlip, I hear ya I hope your employer will take some pity - let alone your co-workers. If you work the mid there must be a few people whose wives wouldn’t mind taking your daughter (who at 20 months should be sleeping through the night, no?) while you work. You need to get a network going. It’s not the only way you, as a temporarily single parent, is going to get through this, but it’s going to be a big help.
Take care of yourself, ok?