Blogger Jennifer Smith shared it recently in a post called I Didn’t Sign Up for This. In the post she writes, “I was devastated. Where were all these welcoming wives I had been told of? Where was my call asking me if I needed anything? I can’t remember any other time in my life when I have felt so alone. I’ve been alone before – because of my own choosing.”
Hearing these sentiments makes my heart ache a bit. I’ve been there. I’ve felt the lonely too and wondered what in the world did I sign up for exactly. And then my heart aches for another reason: This isn’t the military community most military spouses want to create.
I think most military spouses want to open their homes and listening ears to other spouses in the community. I think we do REALLY care about the well-being of other spouses.
But here’s the thing…
When being a military wife feels overwhelming, it feels so much safer and easier to simply avoid the community altogether. When we are struggling, sometimes it seems easier to hide from it all and escape in the comfort of your own home.
I get that.
I am guilty as charged.
But I also think as military spouses there are some really easy ways to reach out to another spouse (military girlfriends included) without feeling like you need to attend every community event or volunteer to run a bunch of FRG events. We can all dip our toes in without diving underwater. Because if we all help each other just a little bit, the military spouse community can transform into a much more welcoming place.
How to cheer up a military spouse.
1. Send over a quick note.
This could be a quick Facebook message or a short handwritten note. Introduce yourself, share your phone number, and let a new spouse know that you are available to help her learn the new area.
2. Take her for coffee.
Or tea. Or a smoothie. Or wine. Whatever drink she wants. The best part about getting a drink is that it doesn’t take a long time, yet it still shows that you care. Find out how she is REALLY doing with the PCS transition or with military life in general.
3. Buy her a small gift.
Not just any gift. Send her a small gift from a military spouse owned business and support two military spouses at once. We all know how truly hard it is to mobilize your career in military life. Military spouse unemployment is a really issue in our community, so when I see a military spouse entrepreneur making a go at her own business, I cannot help but support her. She is trying to make this military life thing work to her advantage. She’s creative. She’s innovative. What is not to love?
And then there is your military spouse in need. The one who needs some encouragement. A small gift really does go a long way.
Here is my favorite go-to military spouse gift:
Rachel recently create Naturally Me, a natural handmade soap & lotion small business. She uses high quality ingredients, and many of the soaps are made with essential oils. She sells locally to the other American families stationed in Belgium. She recently decided to expand and begin selling on Etsy (YAY!).
Everything is completely natural and the ingredients will leave skin much more nourished and moisturized after using. Plus, they smell amazing! Most people have never used handmade natural soaps and the difference is astronomical. It’s funny, a few weeks after I received a shipment of soaps, I was impressed by how good my skin felt.
She is currently running a special military families through September. The 10% off code is MILITARYFAM and can be applied at check out. AND if you are stationed in Europe and Japan, shipping is FREE!
Here is the link to her Etsy shop and Facebook page.
Are you ready?
I know that no matter you current duty station there is a military spouse out there waiting for you to reach out to her. It doesn’t have to be complicated. A little bit goes a long way to help spouses feel more welcome and less alone.
A small gift.
I’m feeling better about this already.
Want more on military life?
- 10 Things Resilient Military Spouses Do Differently
- 31 Military Wife Quotes for Inspiration
- The One Thing You Miss Most During Deployment
- The Biggest Mistake a Military Spouse Can Make
What’s your best way to encourage a military spouse? Let’s chat in the comments!
Disclosure: I received products from Naturally Me by Rachel free of charge. All opinions are my own.