Top 10 ways military wives differ from single moms
Military wives are often separated from their partners during deployments. Does this mean the military wife is now living as a single mom? Although those deployments may be as long as two years, the answer is: not quite. Here’s how military moms are different.
1. They’re married
This is the obvious difference. And it has pros and cons. Many wives of deployed partners get lonely during deployments, but as married women, they are not seeking out emotional or physical relationships for comfort in the same way single women would.
2. Financial support
Although the military spouse is left behind, she is never left without a paycheck. It is dependable and predictable, and this is a huge difference between the two groups.
3. Military resources
If the spouse lives on post or base, she has many resources available to her—from lawn maintenance to free babysitting—that are just not available to most single moms.
A wife of a deployed spouse lives in fear for her partner’s safety. She must shelter and protect her children from the news. It is constant background noise.
5. Time with the kids
Because military spouses have a steady paycheck from their partner, they often don’t have to work outside the home and can spend more time with their children. A single mom needs to work to keep her children fed and clothed, so she doesn’t have the luxury of time.
6. Time for herself
Similar to time with the kids, a military spouse may have free time during the school day to spend on herself and activities she enjoys.
7. Social support
Bases and posts deploy as a unit, so the military wife has a ready-made support group. A single mom may find herself alone, without obvious sisters for support.
8. Social stigma
A military wife, with a deployed spouse, is often viewed as a heroic figure, someone to look up to and emulate. Unfortunately, there is still a fair amount of negative social stigma surrounding single moms.
9. Family connections
The military spouse often acts as a liaison between her partner and her partner’s family, keeping everyone informed of developments. This can strengthen the bond between families and create a more supportive environment, but it’s also a burden to bear when you’re already stressed.
10. Emotional support from spouse
The military wife knows that although not physically present, her spouse cares about the family. Her spouse may be unable to communicate often, but the wife can comfort herself with this knowledge.
Although military wives are certainly Solo Moms during their partner’s deployment, there are tangible differences between them and single moms.
Image via Shutterstock.com
Julia Liu is the daughter of a Solo Mom and has a degree in professional communication. She is the mom to two sons. She has worked in early-childhood education and was the director of a nonprofit private preschool for many years. You can follow her on Twitter at @notaDNB1.
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