You asked for people's honest weigh in, here's mine: DON'T DO IT.
Unless this truly will make or break your family's finances and your back is against the wall, the money ain't worth it. I look at my daughter, she's 18 month's old. The longest I've been away from her since she was born was 2 nights. From the time I leave in the morning until I get home in the evening, she's grown. Since she was 8 months old, I've seen her start walking, learn to play with friends, take her first swing on a swing set, go down the slide for the first time, learn how to use a spork, learn please and thank you, try ice cream, go to the zoo and see her first elephant, get her first hair cut, the list goes on and on and on. When I get home from work and I walk through the door , she screams as loud as she can and runs over to grab me as fast as her little legs can carry her. When I pull a board off the wall rack and put it on the ground, the first thing she does is say, "Brd, brd, brd!" and then climb on it. A few weeks ago, we went to the beach and I saw that she finally got the connection between surfers and surf boards. Somebody caught a wave and she pointed and said "Brd!" I grew up in a household run by a defacto single mother, my Dad was a career naval aviator and then an airline pilot. He was never home. I was the oldest and male, a lot of weight fell on thin shoulders. I can't tell you how many family emergencies went down that he wasn't there for. Hurricanes, a flood, 2 blizzards, car trouble; the list is legion. Me and and my Mom and younger sisters would pack up and move across the country without him and when all the work was done, he'd show up. And you know what, my Mom was a great military wife. When Dad came through the door, we knew, it was best behavior or ELSE, he rarley if ever saw the strife that his being gone caused; because we all valued the little time we had with him. I said from an early age, "If I ever have a family, I'll be there for them, I won't be gone like he is." That ethos is based purely on his not being there. I think a lot of that is why I moved out and was on my own from the time I was 16. That sounds like a good thing in some ways, school of hard knocks, etc. and my life now is great; but that's not a good way to grow up. My Dad is a great guy, lot's of fun and a great provider; I love him to death. But, he wasn't there and a little fiberglass,resin and sand paper don't heal that ding. You will never get back the time apart from your family. Money isn't the most valuable thing in this world, but like I said, I was on my own since I was 16, I know what it's like to be completely broke and it's no joke. Debt is a heavy burden. My wife's a stay at home Mom these days, that's required a lot of belt tightening and sacrifice. We went from two incomes to one and feel very blessed we can pull it off. One thing I see in my wife that I saw in my own mother, she gets frustrated, she loses sight that the baby doesn't always do things that she needs her to, so she gets snappy. She suffers, the baby suffers; thank G-d that when that happens I'm there too as the second parent who can say, "Whoa, take a step back, you just snapped at a child, why?" Usually, it's 'cause she just needs a break and then we're back to being a happy family again. I have a feeling you've already made up your mind., but if you haven't, Don't Do It. My two cents. Good luck, no matter what your decision is.
Results 11 to 20 of 33
Jun 4, 2012, 11:52 PM #11
Jun 5, 2012, 12:25 AM #12Member
- Join Date
- Mar 2012
- Wilmington, NC
My opinion: Money isn't everything. Money doesn't buy happiness. When I look at my two boys and how excited they are to see me when I come home from work everyday... that's worth more than gold.
Jun 5, 2012, 02:52 AM #13
+1 on making sure the spouse is down with it. While I respect zaGaffer's opinion. Different people react differently. I was a military brat with my dad gone a lot... I accepted that as what needed to get done to pay the bills. My wife is in the Navy. From 2004-2010 the longest continuous stretch we had seen each other during that time was like 6 months. Sometimes it sucks but I accepted that as what needed to get done to pay the bills..... so making sure the spouse is down with it is key.
Jun 5, 2012, 03:59 AM #14
Jun 5, 2012, 11:05 AM #15
Thank you for your service to our country.
Jun 5, 2012, 02:09 PM #16Member
- Join Date
- Apr 2011
Being deployed sucks but it's good money. Not everyone is cut out for it though. If you do go, bring a lot of baby wipes also do research on what season it's going to be when you go and pack accordingly. You'll probably end up going to one of the big bases and have easy internet access. The way I see is that you dont have to go out on patrols or anything like that, so it should be a cake walk for ya.
I'm sure you can have one of your family members help your wife with the baby stuff. Also make sure you trust her and that she isn't a crazy spender or anything else. I've seen a lot of guys that came back to an empty bank account or to a cheating wife. Bring work out clothes cuz I'm sure you'll be working out a lot.
Jun 5, 2012, 02:59 PM #17Senior Member
- Join Date
- Apr 2009
- Monmouth County, NJ
Isn't it basically an unwritten understanding that once military couples are separated because one or both are deployed, they cheat on each other. Even the ugliest woman is hot after a month of staring at dudes. The woman to man ratio is staggering. Those women become meat over there.
Don't join the military industrial complex.
Is there surf over there?
Jun 5, 2012, 03:39 PM #18Junior Member
- Join Date
- Jan 2012
Spent most of my adult life in that part of the world. Some of my best memories are in Afghanistan. Take advantage of this opportunity.
I have spent most of my time in the south and east (Kandahar, Zabol, Ghazni, Paktika and Oruzgan). By comparison Kabul is relatively secure. But wherever you end up you might be killed or seriously wounded. Living in that kind of situation is not for everyone.
If you want to go, go. If you stay because of your family you will resent them for it.
If your wife would cheat on you while you are in Afghanistan she'll do it while you aren't. Your marriage is either solid or it isn't.
Just my opinion and I am by no means an expert. Just sharing my experience
Jun 5, 2012, 05:09 PM #19
Why would you come to a forum where people relish discussing dumping in the water, the benefits of babywipes, and being too hungover to surf (to pick just 3 memorable examples) for advice about how to live your life? Good luck to you and your family.