Movies and TV shows make military relationships look like the most romantic thing in the world. Dramatic farewells and hellos at airports, lovesick couples writing letters across the world, and the cutest photoshoots while S.O.s are home on leave make it seem like an Instagram-worthy accomplishment. But military relationships are a lot of hard work, evenings full of tears, and a constant desire to be together. No one tells you how hard it really is.
1. You're going to be lonely. A lot.
I know. Duh right? No. Not duh. It is going to be lonelier than you ever imagined. You are constantly going to feel a part of yourself missing. You are going to constantly worry if he's okay. You are going to constantly wish he would text you more, call you more, miss you more. And honestly, no, it doesn't get any easier as the time passes. But trust me, it'll go by faster than you think.
2. He probably won't be very interested in making huge plans when he gets back.
Okay yes, I know this sounds weird, and yes it's also going to suck. A lot. BUT, if you think about it, making these huge plans and going on and on about how much you miss him is just going to make him remember how much this sucks and how this was his choice and you're miserable. Until randomly, he wants to make plans and talk about how much he misses you, and those moments are the BEST. Even if it's only once every few months.
3. EVERYONE has advice for you.
Oh my god, I can't even begin to tell you how many times I've heard “Just keep your head up" or “Just keep busy" or “Just don't think about it" or “Make a routine for yourself" or “Just tell him how you feel." Oh thanks, Karen, you totally have this whole deployment thing down when you live 7 minutes from your boyfriend and ONLY get to see him every day but it's SO hard to actually get time alone with him. I'm cured. Totally happy now.
4. EVERYONE will tell you to “just keep yourself busy."
See above *insert eye rolling emoji here*
5. People will expect you to know and be willing to talk about everything he is doing “over there."
This one is especially annoying because people still don't understand that some things he isn't allowed to tell you.
6. Everyone will ask you when you're getting married and/or when you're having babies.
This is pretty much the case when you make any step in a relationship but I guess people just assume that when someone enlists there is a clause in their contract that states that you must propose within 27 minutes of graduating basic training. THIS IS NOT IN THEIR CONTRACT! Your 7-year boyfriend is just as legit as what's her name's 7-year marriage, every relationship is different. Don't let people shove their timeline on your relationship.
7. It will feel like you miss him more than he misses you.
He doesn't miss you any less but trust me it will feel that way. When you're miserable and you see that he was on Facebook 22 minutes ago and said he was going to bed an hour ago and yet he has time to like that girl's status. Just give him some time. He misses you. He loves you. He just wanted to scroll down Facebook before he fell asleep. It's okay.
8. When you tell your friends you miss him they will inevitably talk about how they know what you're going through because they haven't seen their boyfriend/husband/whoever in a week or two or literally a day.
And yes you will want to scream every time. No, no one listens when you finally tell them to "shut the f up you just saw him," in the nicest way, obvi. And yes, they will continue to complain. And yes, you just have to sit there and smile and nod girl, smile and nod.
9. People will complain to you about not having enough time with their live-in boyfriend/husband/whoever and yes you have to sit there and listen and pretend you don't want to punch them in the face.
Smile and nod girl, smile and nod.
10. Inevitably someone will get mad at you for complaining about missing him so much.
Yes, you have every right to tell them to f**k off, they have no idea what you're going through.
11. He misses you more than you realize.
Trust me. He may not always say it, but he'll always feel it.
12. People will think they know what you're going through because “My husband travels a lot for work and that's totally the same thing as being active duty and deployed for a year right??"
No Judy, no, it is not the f*****g same.
13. You guys are going to fight.
You will feel like you are always at each other's throats. You will be forever frustrated that he didn't “like" your sappy "I miss you" post fast enough, or that he didn't post a picture of you when it's “National girlfriend day." And he will forever feel frustrated that you complained about him not liking your post, or not posting you instead of his “mad gainz" in the gym, or whatever the case may be.
14. He's not going to want to have “sex" with you as often.
He's surrounded by 100 other guys, with no privacy, and he just worked a 36-hour shift. Give him a break if he's not always ready to whip his d**k out.
15. He's still just as attracted to you.
Just wait until he gets home… just wait… you'll see how attracted he is to you. And trust me it's worth the wait. Well okay, maybe not “worth it" but it takes the sting away a bit.
16. He notices the little things.
He may not respond to your 7 texts telling him how much you miss him that night, or how much you love him, or how much you wish he was there. But trust me. He misses you too and PLEASE don't stop showing him how devoted you are. It does make a difference to him.
17. He doesn't want to hear about your countdown.
You say “We have 217 more days until our wedding" he hears “I have 217 more days in this hellhole"
18. He's going to be more tired than you could ever imagine. And yes, he will remind you of that whenever you mention you're tired, you yawn, you answer the phone, or you know, breathe.
Every. Single. Time.
19. You will feel extremely alone.
Yes, I know I said this earlier, and yes Karen, I know you still miss your boyfriend that lives in the next town over, but it's honestly unimaginable how alone you feel when half of your heart is somewhere, (because he won't be able to tell you exactly where,) doing something, (because he won't be able to tell you exactly what,) and possibly getting shot at.
20. People are going to ask you constantly “are you sure this is what you want?" “Have you cheated on him" “Do you think he's cheated on you?"
Yes, I'm sure. Are you sure you want to date Chris the Tri Alpha Delta Sig whatever ass who threw up on you last night?
No, I'm not going to cheat on him. Are you going to cheat on your boyfriend that you've been with for four years? No? Oh okay.
No, I didn't think he was cheating on me until you put that thought into my head BECKY.
21. You wouldn't trade this for anything.
Yes, I am aware that you would immediately trade this for him being at home safe, working a 9-5 and complaining about gas prices and how long your shower is. BUT you wouldn't trade HIM for anything. Anything. Ever.