Deployment, Marriage, Navy, Personal

The Worst Thing a Civilian Has Ever Said to Me


People always have interesting things to say when we talk about my husband being in the Navy.

There are a lot of crazy misconceptions going around, like I get my groceries for free and don’t have to pay taxes (I wish).

There are a lot of probing questions, too…

I am not sure why Kyle’s job means people can ask me about personal things like whether we were pressured by the military to get married (no) or whether it’s hard to think about having children when their father is away/will be away/just got back (yes).

But by far the worst thing I have ever heard from someone (actually *multiple* people) is something to this effect:

“It must be so nice to have built in breaks in your relationship. When you get tired of him, you know he’ll be leaving soon. When he gets annoying, you have time to start missing him again. And you have all this time when you can focus on yourself, be selfish, and do what you want with no repercussions on your relationship.”

Acca-scuze me?

First of all, maintaining a marriage while one party is deployed and has limited access to communication is actually a lot of work. There is no “focusing on yourself.”

And let’s set aside my obvious objection to your denigration of the institution of marriage while I just say:

How rude.

When my husband is in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, when I haven’t heard from him in days, when the news is full of ships being shot at and wars being threatened, probably the worst thing you can say to me is, “I’d love for my husband to go away for a few months.”


I admit that I am sensitive right now. It’s Valentine’s Day and it’s been six months since I’ve seen Kyle. Six. Months. Do you know how much has happened in six months?! He missed it all.

And that is only part of the story – he was gone so much, the only holiday we spent together in 2016 was Independence Day. (Yes, he even missed MLK Day and Labor Day.) Happy Birthday, America, you needy and demanding mistress.

I am not saying Kyle and I get along perfectly. But we basically do.

To borrow a friend’s saying, I’m obsessed with my husband.

He’s hilarious, patient, so smart, and so kind. He is my best friend.

I miss him like crazy when he is away. I don’t “count my blessings” that he’s not snoring or leaving smelly gym clothes on the floor. First of all, he’s perfect, so he’d never leave nasty shorts on my carpet; but even if he did, I’d miss that stuff too.

I married Kyle because I wanted to spend as much time as possible with him. Even when everyone else is driving me nuts, I want to come home to him. I don’t need “alone time.” I don’t need a break. I need him.

If you’re married, hug your husband today. Actually kiss him all over the face. I don’t care if he’s bothering you. You married him for a reason. Remember it. And remember it tomorrow, too.

And find something else to say to a woman whose husband is deployed. Believe me, she didn’t want the break.

1 thought on “The Worst Thing a Civilian Has Ever Said to Me”

  1. Are you kidding me?! This makes me so angry for you. I just finished doing my first deployment with my boyfriend and it was SO hard. I can’t imagine being married and having to go though it! People sometimes just have no perspective (or sympathy; I feel like it’s common sense to realize doing a deployment is so hard!). Thanks for sharing!


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