Post # 1
So as you read from the title, my husband is thinking about joining the navy. It’s been a topic we have both been back and forth on and weighing all of the pros and cons. He really values how I feel about everything so it is definitely going to be a mutual decision.
So, a little background, my husband was laid off about a month and a half ago from his civilian job, he was a junior designer at an engineering firm and he’s been having a lot of difficulty finding another job. He has been in the army for 7 years as a reservist, basically only working part time which would be once a week for 3 hours and some weekend exersizes here and there with a few weekly ones.
When he lost his job he was devistated and it made him question what he really wanted to do, his last job was sitting behind a desk and he is very outdoorsy and adventerous so this is when the topic of joining the navy came about. He has many friends in the navy and hears good things and bad things. It’s excellent money, great benefits and I know he’ll be doing something he loves and that he is proud of. But of coarse, the hugest downside is the time apart.
When we first started dating we did long distance for about 2 years and it was terrible, but that was 6 years and a huge commitment ago. When he goes away on weekly exersizes where I can’t speak to him for the entire week it’s been totally fine, but that is only 1 week and I know with the navy he would be gone months, with the possibility of even close to a year.
I am currently in my masters degree taking audiology so I will begin my career in a little over 2 years and we are planning for children in about 4-5 years. As you can imagine 7 years of school will and has put me in a lot of debt and our living expenses are quite high living in the city, so the money is definitely needed, not to mention the great service he will be doing for our country which is amazing by itself. Also the fact that he’ll be excited about his career and happy with what he’s doing!!
I guess what I want to know from any military wives/girlfriends is what their experience was like? Also if you’re not a military wife/girlfriend, how would you feel about this? It would be so helpful as we make this huge decision in our lives. Or even if you’ve done some extreme long distance and have any advice! We are Canadian, I know the experience could be different in the US but any advice is certainly appreciated!
We are both very torn. Thank you if you made it this far down haha and thank you for any advice you may have!
Post # 3
Why isn’t he thinking of full time army? If he’s already in the reserves wouldn’t he be better off going there pay grade wise? Has he looked at full time reserve positions in other branches? Not judging, just a question to get a clearer picture.
Post # 4
Navy wife here. My husband is an aircrewman and he is home maybe a week out of every month. Sometimes he is only home a few days before he deploys again. It is definitely very, very tough but the upside is that he deploys in three week brackets, doesn’t go anywhere dangerous, and we have constant communication.
The Navy treats its men and women very well. It isn’t as strict in some areas as other parts of the military (Husband’s best friend is Army and they discuss differences all the time), and my husband gets liberties that some other branches don’t.
The pay is good, and he gets extra for living off base & being married.
It definitely takes a dedicated person (on both sides) to make a military relationship work. You lose your life, because the Navy owns my husband. His weekends are never his, since he can always be called in to work, or deploy at the drop of a hat. They even try to deploy you (at least in our case) if you’re on leave. That isn’t too often, but it happens. You can be called into work multiple times a day at any time of day.
At first, it was really tough for me, but I had just moved 1,200 miles away from any friend and family I had to a state I had only visited once, and he was gone more than he was home.
All the household responsibilities fall on me, and I often don’t have him to rely on when something goes wrong, so that’s also another thing you need to consider if you don’t have friends/family in the area (And even if you guys move.)
My life isn’t ideal, but it takes care of us, and the Navy takes care of my husband really well. It’s tough, and I’m lonely most of the time, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
Post # 5
@tksjewelry: Great question! And it’s a question I’ve been pressing him about too. He has given me several reasons why he would not want to go full time army. Firstly, in Canada, there are only two Navy bases, in Victoria, BC and in Halifax, NS (and we currently live in Halifax where all of his family is) so he really likes the aspect of not having to move around to multiple places on a dime, and he also said he would not enjoy any of the trades within the army.
@Hyperventilate: Thank you SO much for your advice, it was very helpful. I also applaud you for making it work! <3