Last week we published, Challenge Issued: Calling All Male Military Spouses, and we couldn’t be more pleased about the response we got from our male military spouse community. Not only did we get some brave guys to share their thoughts in the comments, we got several emails from male military spouses who are more than willing to join our writing team, huzzah!
unveil unleash unique pieces direct from the brains of our milspouse brothers, here’s a few of our favorite responses to our all-call for testosterone-infused military spouse stories.
On being a male military spouse…
As a male spouse, it is fun to “crash” those teas and coffees and mock-dine-ins – anything that historically been girlie. Face it, since we are only 7% of the spouse demographic (ok, maybe 8% this year), catering to the beefier side of a marriage may be too much, and scare away the shy young teen wives. Leave your frilly fun times the way they are, we guys will find things to do. With beer maybe. Definitely with sports. ~Dave Etter
Just like being any other sort of spouse, I guess. With obvious wrinkles, of course. But there’s no secret handshake or hidden ‘no girls allowed’ clubhouse within our emerging ranks. As far as you know. ~ Christopher Field
Well being a male spouse is different. I find myself hanging around soldiers more than I do around spouses. It’s easier to break into a group of soldiers through a poker night or a good old strategic gaming night. Whenever I move somewhere new I try my best to get into the community. Last time I helped grow a non profit in the community and joined the chamber of commerce. This time I found a once a week gaming group and hang out with a bunch of scouts and tankers. I find the easiest way to survive is through immersion. ~ Christopher Hillman
On what they love…
I don’t love ‘whats’. I love ‘whos’ (family and friends) and ‘hows’ (ferociously, steadfastly, feverishly). ~ Christopher Field
I do appreciate all the efforts that have come down to change things to gender-neutral “spouse” labels, it does my heart good. But for you guys out there who haven’t taken the plunge, it is a royal BLAST swimming in the sea of estrogen at spa-days! ~Dave Etter
I love the travel and I love learning. I love that I get to be a renaissance man. I’ve been a sous chef, worked logistics, ran my own non profit, seen backroom politics, been in two parades, joined a few symposiums… I’ve wine tasted, log rolled, had a sing along with Ben Lee…~ Christopher Hillman
On what they hate…
Almost all the spouse support groups are explicitly for “wives” or female spouses, so it’s hard to connect and have that resource to help me out. While I haven’t started my physical transition to become male-bodied, I have socially transitioned already. It’s not secret nor could I hide that I am a male spouse, and the female spouses all treat me accordingly: they don’t like my presence at their little get-togethers (in part because I am a guy, in another part because I’m transsexual and there’s a stigma about that in our society, especially the military). ~Gene Dillion
The things I can live without are the constant job changes, the need to adapt to a more domesticated role and come down from my raised 50s point of view. Its hard when your taught to be the bread winner and to fit into the stereotypical family man. With a masters in Public administration, a bachelors in business management and years of experience it’s hard to just be a low level clerk as well. ~ Christopher Hillman
On what female military spouses can do to help our male military spouses out…
…we have one HELL of a time figuring out how to potty train daughters. And we know you gals struggle with not sissy-fying your sons – let’s work out a schedule. You take mine for a couple of afternoons when our soldiers are deployed, and I’ll take yours! Kinda like a Big Brother/Big Sister thing, only with the stuff we are not singularly equipped to succeed at. ~Dave Etter
On their spouses…
My wife’s schedule currently is over 60 + hours a week , she is leashed with a pager when not at work and time alone is scarce. I try to do most of the house work and day to day things. I budget the monthlies, watch the kiddo and do most of the domestic stuff. My wife in turn plays bread winner. Lately we have taken to a poster board on our bedroom wall. It reminds us of upcoming events and activities we look forward to. ~ Christopher Hillman
I find myself saying ‘Yes, Ma’am’ a lot. ~ Christopher Field
Are you a male military spouse? Are these guys speaking your language? Show them some love in the comments below!