Post # 1
My fiance is a 2Lt in the army and is going on his first tour this Nov for at least a year. We had talked about getting married before he deployed in Sept but other things came up and we decided it would be better until he returned.
I accepted the fact that we were not getting married before we left and threw myself into wedding planning and never looked back…well, not really…
A part of me still wishes that our wedding date was still Sept 12 of this year and I’m having a hard time dealing with it sometimes. Being engaged to someone in the military completely threw out all my preconceived ideas about how a traditional southern girl like myself plans a wedding, especially when it came to planning time. I always thought I would have to have at least a year and nothing less to plan my Atlanta wedding and when we got engaged over Easter, all that went out the window, all I wanted was to be his wife and if 5 months was all had then I could make it happen.
The thing that I’m having a hard time dealing with is…wondering if he will come home. Does anyone else think that?? I know it’s so negative and really morbid but I’m terrified of him dying and the wedding that will never happen. I see things on tv and articles online about the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and the death tolls and I’m so scared that my fiance and man that is my soulmate will die and we won’t have had our day.
Before we nailed down our current wedding date (June 11, 2011 btw), we had a huge fight because I still wanted to try and have our wedding before and he didn’t want to rush it because he wanted it to be everything we’ve both dreamed of. My point then, and I still feel like this time to time, was that I’m having a hard time thinking about him leaving this country and going to war without being my husband. It’s something I can’t really explain but I felt it so strongly in my heart.
I love him with all my heart and have accepted and for the most part embraced the army lifestyle but I’m still having a hard time with this. When I bring it up with him he either retorts back that I just want to marry him because I think he might die and that’s so untrue or he promises me that nothing will happen to him.
Has anyone else felt this way with the fears of your fiance deploying and not coming home and your dream of marrying him wont happen? How do yall deal with this?
Sorry this is so long bees!!!
Post # 3
While I’m not in your shoes currently….I was in a previous relationship. It’s hard, and I think it takes a special person to handle it all. And it sounds like you are that kind of person, so you can do this. I know the best thing for me was I was able to meet-up with a group of wonderful ladies who had loved ones deployed as well. We met for dinner once every other week near the base he was deployed from. This was in the intial “shock and awe” campaigns and we were all fearful for their safety and I always felt more distanced since we weren’t married (that and as special forces I had no contact with him for months at a time). I could never explain it well either….it was just like I longed for that permanent bond to comfort me a bit. My advise is look to the local bases to see if there are ladies groups you could meet up with, and value each email/conversation and visit.
And as you start planning turn to us on the Atlanta boards, we’ll give you a collective southern bee hug and help you out as best we can 🙂
Hang in there….you and your FI are in my thoughts during these hard times.
Post # 4
Hey there, first of all BIG hugs!! I can’t say I understand exactly because my FI never finished his basic training. But periodically he mentions re-enlisting, feeling like he wants to serve, and I have to face that. Here is what I do know though— the news media is out to sell their product and their agenda. Everything is exaggerated and I have friends serving in Iraq and Afghanistan who say it’s really not half as bad as the news makes it out to be. I recommend getting involved in a support network of other army wives, and seek out positive stories of other people in your position. The more you rehearse your fears and run them through your mind, the more real they seem. I don’t know where you stand on religion, but from my perspective I would say dig into the Word and take comfort there. Good luck!
Post # 5
- Wedding: October 2009 - Ceremony: The Kraine Theatre, Reception: Midtown Loft & Terrace
Like the other ladies have said, he will probably come home just fine. But I’m sure that’s not much comfort to a worried heart and mind — you are very strong to be dealing with this, I’m not sure I would be able to without worrying myself sick over it!
That said, could you maybe do a private ceremony at city hall with just you and your parents and still have the big southern wedding next summer? I don’t know if that would make you feel better.
Post # 6
My love is coming back from Iraq on August 14!! 🙂 It is scary, but you just have to believe that everything will be okay. Don’t put any other thoughts out in the universe. You’re wedding will be EXACTLY what you both dream of and you’ll be able to appreciate the excitement all the way up to that day. Specialist Sierra (My love 🙂 ) always tells me that he would never let anything happen because he loves me so much and he WILL come home to me. 2nd LT Murray won’t let anything happen to himself because he loves you with all his heart and is as hopeful for that big day as you are!
Post # 7
I think your worries and fears are normal and anyone in a similar situation would feel the same way. I haven’t had this happen to me, but to two friends. Both were with their boyfriends for a long time when the guys received their orders to be shipped out. One decided that she couldn’t let him go away and not be married. She couldn’t explain why she felt that way and still can’t. They were married a month before he left and she hasn’t regretted that choice 5 years later. In the three months between the notice and the wedding they were able to plan a simple but wonderful church wedding and reception. The other friend also decided to get married, before he left, in a civil ceremony with just a few family members. For them, it was a “we’re getting married regardless, might as well do it before you leave, so you can receive more money.” Apparantly, people inlisted that are married receive more money? I’m not sure but that was her perspective. Plus, she has found a lot of comfort with other wives in the group. That’s just two perspectives that I’ve seen.
You could do what Miss Star said and go to city hall and then plan the wedding/renewal/reception/welcome home celebration afterwords. Only you know what will help your heart and give you peace of mind. The wonderful thing about feelings is that you don’t have to justify them. Good luck!
Post # 8
Is there any particular reason why he doesn’t want to get married—even if it’s a short and sweet civil service—before he leaves? Especially since he’s in the military there is always that awful chance that something could happen and if it does then you would be taken care of if you’re married. If you are not his wife you won’t receive a single thing.
My fiance was supposed to deploy this month, but he was taken off the deployment list. Had he gone we would have eloped and just been married on paper, but would have had the ceremony and party with everyone when he got back. In the military that’s a very common thing to do.
I hope you’ll be able to talk to him again about this! Good luck 🙂
Post # 9
My fiance is deployed right now in Afghanistan with the Army, he is an airborne infantry soldier so basically all of the dangerous stuff is what his group does. I worry about him all the time and there are times I feel like just breaking down, but I try my hardest not to. You have to be strong, both for you and him. You can’t let him know that you are thinking those things, because the last thing your fiance is going to want to hear is that you are worried that he might not come back because I promise you he is already thinking about it. I let my fiance know that I miss him, and that I hope he is being as careful as he can be in the situation, and that I cannot wait until he comes home to me, most of all I let him know that I am proud of him and I love him.
You just have to deal with it. You have to deal with the worries and keep going because they will always be there. They won’t go away until he comes back home and you have to accept that. It is impossible to have someone in a warzone and not worry. And as tough as it can be that is all there is to do, just deal with it.
Post # 10
Oh I hit enter before I finished my post. But what I wanted to add was that even though you do have to deal with it, you don’t have to do it all alone. Us girls with guys deployed need to stick together. So if you ever feel like talking/venting just message me, and there are other great girls on here too going through the same thing.
Post # 11
I was you two years ago. My now-husband was a 2LT in the army and left for a 15 month deployment. The month leading up to it i was consumed with all these awful thoughts, which he thought was silly. He told me that if he was meant to come home safely, he would, simple as that. He said if God wanted to take him, it wouldn’t matter when or where, it would just happen. He also said that us getting marrie dbefore his deployment wasn’t fair to me because if he didn’t come home, i’d be a young widow and he said he couldn’t leave me and do that to me. But he said that if we waited until he got home, it’d be a big celebration to us that we stuck it out and that we would really appreciate it. You can still be there for him despite getitng married afterwards, and to me, you have’nt indicated naything in particular besides his deployment that says you want to be married, like you have children or you’re worried about health insurance or you live together and need the extra money the army pays deployed spouses, etc. We didn’t want to get married just because he was leaving. I got 2 cats while he was deployed and tried to remind myself that as an officer, he was safer than enlisted men (for the most part) and that helped me appreciate and be lucky for the situation that I found myself in. i was grateful that we got email during the day and one phone call a week b/c some people didn’t even have that So i tried to justify the whole thing and it really helped keep my emotions in check. You ahve to be strong for your fiance, too, and it’s hard to not fall apart. But when you fall apart, they fall apart, and they can’t do their job as well. I tried to always be positive on the phone so he knew i was thinking of him, but also so he didn’t have to worry about ME while he was on his missions. I wanted him to have full eyes on himself. You can do this and there are lots of support groups out there, but since your husband has to wait, I think he probably has a lot of the same reasons my husband did. And let me tell you, when we were saying our vows for the first time at our wedding, I really felt like “wow we did this and we waited and we deserve this and it’s all official and WOW!” and it made me feel like waiting was totally worth it. Like a reward or something almost. You’ll be able to keep yourself busy with the wedding planning, too. The first month is the hardest, at least for me it was. After that, you get very used to the new routine of being alone and you almost become comfortable. I haven’t seen my husband in a month now and I won’t see him until the end of August (hopefully) and it’s like a piece of cake now. I just tell myself i’m goign to do what “I” want to do. I go to bed early, i cook what I want, I do what i want when i want, and i go to the gym a lot. He thought it was really great that i got into really good shape while he was gone. It gave him something to look forward to, too. I know this all sounds silly, but you learn to find joy and appreciation in the little things. Yes, friday nights would be nice to have a date, but you become content in sitting around in your pj’s with a glass of wine doing invitations. I had my cats and when i felt particularly lonely, i either got out of the house and rented a movie, or I got on the internet and did lots of wedding reserach. Thinking about the happy day to come really brought my spirits up. Also, i bought a webcam and would record him videos, then send them along so i knew that when he got up he’d get to see them. It was something he really appreciated. I filled my emails with tedious “this is what i did today” crap so that he felt connected and knew what was going on in my life. It’s the little things, like knowing i had a bowl of cereal for breakfast or i bought a new flavor of coffee, etc. He loved rundowns of my days and I alwasy packed him care packages with the greatest stuff. Include a few extra bags of goodies for his buddies, too. Not all of them have wives or fiances or girlfriends or anyone at all who’ll send them care packages. It feels good to not only support your SO, but also his unit. They’re all in it together. Get in contact with a few of your fiance’s buddy’s SO’s. I met two other military SO’s that way and we would send messages on facebook on a friday night or just say hello. It’s a sense of community, but you have to reach out for it, too. If you need anyone to talk to, feel free to PM me. You’ll be amazed at how strong and independent you beocme. it’s a good thing =]
Post # 12
ejs4y8, I always like your level-headed advice/shared experiences for military brides, it’s comforting. Because you discussed the emotional aspects of the situation well, I will just add my strictly logical thinking two cents.
Mrsmurrytobe, if I were in your situation, I would have a civil ceremony, only tell our parents, and continue with you wedding ceremony planning. My FI and I were going to do this for much more superficial reasons than yours, but things worked out somehow and we didn’t have to. Our Chaplain said this is very common.
You did not mention whether you are close with his parents or not. I am not close with my FI’s parents and at times, when he’s away for the weekend, I get overwhelmed worrying about what would happen if something horrible were to happen. His parents are the beneficiaries for all those what-if things that come along with military service. I worry about not being able to pay our mortgage, not having a say in his final resting place, and most of all not being the first person notified.
It is not my intention to worry you, just to share that I have the same fears. No matter what you choose everything will work out ok.
Post # 13
Thanks, MrsMurray. I’m glad to hear that. You have some good points. I had the same fears about money, too, and laying him to rest. Ultimately, though, he said that if something SHOULD happen to him, he felt it was his mother’s duty to bury her soldier and I would reside as the wife-that-was-to-be. It sounds harsh, but he makes a point. I would have been very heartbroken over the whole thing and in the time to come, I probably would have moved on with my life and married someone else and had children. And his mother would still have no son and would still be relatively poor. From his perspective, I would be fine, no matter what. I would never need that money, but his family really did. I think in a way, this was my husband taking care of his single mom (who raised him all by herself in a difficult situation), knowing that I would be able to take care of myself seeing as how I have a solid college education. It kinda sounds awful to put it that way, though, but it’s something else to think about. Really, how dependent on him are you, right? Do you have a house together, etc? The Army does pay the beneficiary 2 million dollars (for 2LT’s) in case their soldier doesn’t come home. Granted, we didn’t own our house together at the time (i think if we had, it’d be a very different story and I likely would have laid out more practical reasons as to why we should get married, as it was I was in college and I was 100% financially independent on him). If you share any sort of property value or anything of that nature, know that the military will include “hazard” pay into your SO’s paychecks, and I can’t remember if it’s an extra $1,000 or $1,500. If you own a house together, you could really earmark some of that for your future.
I know quite a few military wives who got married before their husband’s deployment. It’s very common and welcomed in the military community. But if your fiance is really against it, don’t talk him into it just for the sake of it. He might really be looking forward to coming home from his deployment and officially making you his wife
Post # 14
OMG that yall so very much for responding! Yall have made some really great points and given some great advice and I appreciate it so much!
To answer some questions and clarify on some things:
We had talked about just going to the courthouse like some of yall mentioned and although we joke about eloping before he goes, I think I’m the only one who is serious. Another reason he had for wanting to wait was that he didn’t want to marry me, say good bye and then spend our entire first year of marriage apart. I can easily argue both sides of that but I think yall know what side I’m on. As I would never force or guilt him into doing it, that’s that.
Like some of yall mentioned, I was worried about being in the know should anything happen or there was news to be relayed to family and it kills me to think that I don’t have rights because legally I am not his spouse. I don’t want to control anything I just want to know. He assures me that he can put me down as being able to hear things or if something happens they let me know but I don’t know if he’s telling the truth or not for the sake of easing my fears.
As far as his family, I love them to death! They are the best inlaws I could have asked for and I really feel truly blessed! They have completely accepted and embraced me into the family and actually as I’m typing this, I am visiting with them while my fiance is gone for a month doing training. His mom and I talked about all this last night and we decided that we are going to plan a trip every few months to have something to be excited about and look forward to while he’s gone.
I know I will be busy with wedding planning and I’m finishing up my degree and after reading all this, I know I could have it a lot worse but it’s still just…hard, scary. It’s just difficult to think about the situation and as of recently, it’s gotten really overwhelming. I know I will get through it and we will be stronger and saying our vows will be the best day of my entire life. It’s just fear of the unknown, I guess, that terrifies me, fear of losing something so precious to me.
You all are brave women to have stuck by and been supportive of your men and I thank you so much for writing. It really made me feel so much better to know that I’m not alone with all this. Thanks, too for the really good advice about getting involved and how to stay connected to him with what little we will have.
Post # 15
Ha wasn’t finished…
*hugs* to all yall!
I hope yall don’t think ill of me after reading my last response, I’m just a very emotional person and I’m simply just terrified of losing the best thing that ever happened to me. I never dreamed I would marry a man in the military but you can’t help who your Mr. Right turns out to be. Now, this whole war situation is so personal and I feel so helpless as far as how to help my fiance and not being able to keep him safe.
I could be better but I am a Christian and I pray everyday and it does help.
Other women I’ve talked to make it seem so easy and they sound so brave, it’s nice to know I’m not alone in fearing for their lives and being scared. Thank you.
Post # 16
In response to how “we” do it (I put we in quotes because I’m not a wife yet!). I think you kind of just do it because you have to. You can’t spend your days wallowing and thinking about the possibly going on to them while they’re deployed – the worry would just eat at you alive. When my FI was deployed the last time I allowed myself a few days to cry, be sad and feel pitty, but after that I focused on other things: writing him letters, sending care packages, etc. When I talked to him on my phone I tried my hardest not to let him hear the quiver in my voice from almost crying (I let the tears fall once we hung up).
It is hard and extremely scary, especially for us just waiting on the other side, but you have to remember that you’re not going at it alone. If anything you have this forum here (!) and there are several forums out there for military wives/girlfriends/fiances (www.womenofliberty.com and http://www.militaryissuedgirlfriends.com); those are two that I joined during our first deployment and just having other women to vent to and talk with helped more than I can tell you.
Hang in there – you’ll get through this!