THe Harting Family

THe Harting Family

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Some topics of conversation are off limits | emotions, spouse, spouses - Commentary - Havelock News

Great article I came across today.

Some topics of conversation are off limits emotions, spouse, spouses - Commentary - Havelock News

As any Marine spouse will tell you, deployments are touchy subjects. They are entangled in a heap of emotions that most spouses rarely recognize until the deployment ends and their usual sanity has been restored.
So it should come as no surprise that since Marine spouses can have difficulty pinpointing their emotions, approaching a spouse to inquire about the deployment can be like dodging land mines. There’s a lot of tip-toeing involved.
Conversations about deployment, however brief, have the potential to be discouraging for both the spouse and the inquirer. Someone may approach a spouse very innocently and be answered by an explosion of tears because today is one of the bad days.
Probably more often, the spouse will answer all the questions as politely and as calmly as possible and then go home and scream or cry into a pillow.
I’m saying this not to discourage people from approaching a spouse knee deep in deployment, but to give some conversation guidelines.
While some of the items on my list may seem obvious, I assure you that I wouldn’t have taken the time to list each one if I hadn’t heard it with my own ears.
So, without further ado, here’s a list of topics never to mention to a deployed spouse.
First and foremost, do not try to relate by sharing your own story of separation from your own spouse for a couple of days. It is not, nor will it ever be, the same thing.
You’ll get no sympathy from a Marine spouse for your story about your significant other spending the weekend away for a work conference. Being separated for only a weekend is something we would appreciate.
Second, terrorists. Yes, we’re well aware of what they can do. We know our Marines could run into them at any time while they’re away from us. That doesn’t mean we want to talk about it.
Third, remember that no matter how tough a Marine spouse appears to be, everyone gets a little scared sleeping alone.
There’s no need putting scary thoughts into the mix, so avoid preaching about home security and crime rates
Fourth, please, PLEASE, don’t tell us how worried about our Marines you are. Don’t make a deployed spouse have to console you. You can toughen up just like we have.
Fifth, and this seems like a no-brainer, but I’m sure somebody somewhere needs to hear it. Never, under any circumstance, try to convince a spouse that the war is a waste of time.
Your beliefs are your business, but you couldn’t pick an audience less interested in them. We’d like to believe that our Marines are gone trying to defend your right to have an opinion. You’re welcome.
Finally, please spare us from your perspective on the war and the peace. Remember, however credible you think your cable television news may be, we get our news from the Marines themselves. We have enough going through our heads. We don’t need your war strategies as well.

Kristi Stolzenberg is a Marine wife whose column appears every other week in the Havelock News. She can be reached at


LCpl'sPrincess said...

i really loved the line "dont make a spouse console you" so true so very true

LCpl'sPrincess said...

amen sister

Tiffanie said...

What a great post!!! I LOVE IT!!!

Anonymous said...

Dropping in to let you know that you've landed on my milspouse blogroll. Stop on over sometime and check it out. Get to know me and other spouses! Thanks!