Ask a Mum of a MILITARY FAMILY [30/8 - 6/9]

Discussion in 'Baby Club' started by Mervs Mum, Aug 30, 2009.

  1. Mervs Mum

    Mervs Mum Doula & Mum of 3!

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    Welcome to our weekly Ask a Mum thread :D

    If you are unfamiliar with these threads, the concept is that each week a member is nominated to speak about an issue that relates to them. People may ask them as many questions as they wish, and they will do their best to answer them. The idea is that we all learn about one another, and discuss issues and lifestyles that affect one another.

    This week's member is Rafwife.

    Rafwife recently became a serving solider in the Territorial Army and starts her training next month. Her OH is also serving in the RAF, making them a dual military family.
    She is happy to answer any questions you might like to ask.


    If you would like to volunteer to be one of our Ask A Mums, then please PM me. (Please do not post in this thread)

    You need to include what subjects you would like to talk about, and then when it is your week I will PM you the weekend before. Please note though, that it may take several weeks for it to be your turn. If you have any questions about the Ask A Mum threads, then please PM me.

    These threads are for questions for our weekly Mum only. :)

    Previous Ask A Mum Threads:

    Post Natal Depression
    7 Kids 10 and Under
    Survived domestic violence
    Assisted Conception
    Teen Mums in UK & US
    Cloth Nappies/Diapers
    Baby Signing
    Baby Led Weaning BLW
    Hypno Birthing
    Working Mum
    Fell Pregnant 5 wks in to relationship
    Living with a disibility
    Baby Wearing
    Ask a DAD!
     
  2. Tiff

    Tiff LIKE A BOSS

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    Do you guys get posted alot? How do you feel about moving if you do, with having a baby?

    My OH's family is Military, and the moving is the main reason why he didn't want to enlist. Although he has maintained that the reason why he can go into a room and chat with anyone is from the constant moving when he was a child.

    :)
     
  3. Jkelmum

    Jkelmum Well-Known Member

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    After reading sombody elses post about having to leave her daughter for 4 months and missing christmas ...How will u cope with leaving your lo for months and who will have her ?
     
  4. sophie c

    sophie c 2 gorgeous daughters <3

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    how will you manage childcare if you are both sent off? are you worried about missing things with your LO?

    xxx
     
  5. snettyb

    snettyb Well-Known Member

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    How do you cope with the 'not knowing'? Like, where will i be in a year etc...xx
     
  6. mernie

    mernie Mom and Pregnant with #2!

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    My DH is in the military. I'm still somewhat "new" to it all in a way. We've spent alot of our relationship apart so I didn't have to deal with alot of the things he goes through. I'm terrified that DH is going to be going to Iraq before they start the pullout in 2012, even then its a possibility he could go to Afghanistan. Has your OH ever been deployed? If he has been deployed how did you handle it while he was gone? Also how do you cope with moving around?

    This is the first place I've REALLY moved to and we're getting ready to move again for 6 months then move again. Ok I'm done now. sorry if thats too many questions! :lol:
     
  7. Shireena__x

    Shireena__x In My Own Little World

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    (this might be a bit wrong so please feel free to delete/egnore. i wouldnt be able to do it my self only for this reason)

    if i and OH both went out and died (touch wood, not wishing this on you ATALL) the DD Would be left with no mommy or daddy :(. how does that part of it all make you feel like?
     
  8. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    We get posted every 2.5 years, and that won't ever change. However, within the military different branches move at a different rate. For instance Engineers move every 18 months.

    I'm happy to move, anytime, anywhere. usually you will get 2 months notice, but on our last move we got 2 weeks. I grew up moving every 2 years, so to me it's normal. For Niamh, I am happy for her to move around as long as she is. If she gets to an age where it starts to affect her, we'll look at a more permenent arrangement (ie one of us settling somewhere while the other moves) or her going to boarding school. The military subsidises private education for us, so we can have the option of boarding schools :)

    You do end up getting used to it. Packing up your entire life and moving it across the country (and sometimes the world!) at a moments notice. :lol:
     
  9. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    I'll tie these questions together as they are quite similar :)

    OH and I will never be sent off to a place like Afghanistan together. The military is very careful to arrange not that one parent is at home, but that both parents are never in a situation where they could both be in danger. The military won't even let OH and I fly in an aircraft together in case it goes down.

    We have people called 'desk officers' and they decide where we go and when. Luckily, even though I'm Army and OH is RAF they will be speaking to each other and try to be flexible.

    As a soldier in the TA, I am also in total control of my own deployments. I decide when I am able to go out somewhere like Afghanistan, and let them know.

    Oh goes for 12 weeks in the RAF, I'll go for 6 months. It will be hard, and long and of course I will miss my family a lot. You never join to go to war, but it's part of the job. I can't command men in my unit, then not go myself. I'm just lucky I get to choose when I go.

    So when I do go, OH will be looking after Niamh and you do take a lot of comfort in knowing they are ok with your husband and your family are safe and well at home. :)
     
  10. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    To me, it's exciting. I love not knowing what's on the horizon. I could never be in a life where I did the same thing everyday, and I think thats why people like me are attracted to the military.

    You can make a pretty good guess though. I know that this time next year, OH will be on leave as he's off to Afghanistan in October until January. My unit will be quiet, and I'll be away probably every other weekend.
     
  11. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    Don't worry hun, I'm happy to answer any question at all! :)

    It's impossible for us to go out at the same time, the military would never ever put us in that situation with a young baby. As I said above I can also choose when I go out too.

    Dying is of course always a possibility, but my OH is a pilot and the chance of something happening to him is incredibly slim. He is just too high in the sky to ever be a target.

    For me, it's more dangerous but again I'm doing something relatively safe. I'm not in a unit that will regularly come under direct fire, and we Engineers so are more involved with things like building runways, water systems, demolition, etc. However being on the ground does mean it's more dangerous than my OHs job, but in the grand scheme of things we're both in very 'safe' jobs. :)
     
  12. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to the family! :lol:

    My OH hasn't been deployed to war yet (his first stint is October-January next year) however he has been away a lot. Usually on the front line, he'll be gone about 6 months a year.

    You do get used to it! OH missed 8 months of my pregnancy, and most of my scans though he could come back some weekends. People who aren't military are always amazed at how we cope, but to me it's business as usual. I just know that's his job, and it's what I expect.

    Luckily, when they are on deployment things are a lot different now to how they were. It used to be a 20min phonecall every 2 weeks when we first went to Iraq.

    Now, they are allowed laptops, skype, msn, internet and 30mins of phone time a day. Of course they have to pay for it, but the lines of communication are much more open now. Parcels and letters are always great too and it often gives the guys a boost to get things like sweets, magazines and DVDs from home. :)

    When moving around, you do have to through yourself into live on the base otherwise you'll end up a bit lonely. Go to the events, knock on your neighbours doors (they won't bite!) and put yourself out there. Sonme days you won't feel like it at all, and it's always nervewracking introducing yourself to new people but you need to get out and do it. Everyone has been in your position when moving to a new base, and everyone will be welcoming :)
     
  13. Mervs Mum

    Mervs Mum Doula & Mum of 3!

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    Not a question but I wanted to say I dont think all people realise that the TA can end up going to places like Iraq and Afghanistan. I know I didnt think that they did (I'm from a former dual military family :) ) until I met my hubby's best mate. He is a Major in the TA and he's done two 6 month tours - one in Iraq and one in Afghanistan. I think people have a misconception of the TA just playing soldiers on the weekends when it's not like that from what I have learned.

    Good on ya Nic for getting stuck in there!

    :)
     
  14. Lu28

    Lu28 Aisling's mammy

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    I'm embarrassed to say this is what I had always thought, I didn't realise the TA went to Afghanistan etc. No questions here either but it must be difficult generally and it's great that you're doing this :hugs:
     
  15. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    Thanks girls :)

    It's easy to forget that it's not really publicised what we do.

    This time next year, I'll be fully trained up. I'll have done a full year of Officer training, I'll have attended Sandhurst and I will be expected at some point to lead a troop of full time serving Army soldiers in Afghanistan. I will be a junior officer in my Regiment, and responsible to a full time Major for helping run the Regiment and make sure everyone is trained appropriately. I can also volunteer to do a full time 3 year tour if I choose to, and you can have pretty much a career as a reservist.

    However, I work officially part time. The minimum commitment is 1 weekend per month, however I'll be doing every other weekend, and 2 evenings a week. I'll also be going away for training courses through the year for a week or so at a time.

    Employers by law have to hold your job for you, and be sympathetic to your training needs, so they cannot stop you from going on training, or stop you from deploying. When you're away, they get given money from the government to do things like employ a temp to cover your absence.

    There are some new adverts coming out that say 'One Army, Regular and TA' and it's true. We are trained as they are trained, except our training is done over a longer period and we work part time. We can go and be as effective in a wartime situation.
     
  16. Mervs Mum

    Mervs Mum Doula & Mum of 3!

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    What regiment are you in (if you can say) and what job/trade (sorry if that's not the right terminology :blush: ) will you have?
     
  17. Tiff

    Tiff LIKE A BOSS

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    What is TA?

    I'm not familiar with it over there... :blush:

    Here we have Army/Navy/Airforce as well, with the Canadian Military, but we also have the "reserves" which get called in for reinforcements, if needed? I don't even know if I have that right either! :dohh:

    Care to give a history of the TA, or explain what it is you guys do? :hugs:
     
  18. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    I'd prefer not to say what specific Regiment I'm in, but I'm with the Royal Engineers which is also known as the Combat Engineers. I'm an officer in training, but there are trades that the soldiers themselves do. My job is basically to ensure the smooth running of the Regiment, and help look after the soldiers that do the trades.

    Combat Engineers do everything from laying and clearing mine fields, to building bridges, blowing things up, laying runways, building water systems etc. We go in, and get out as fast as possible and are usually the first on the ground, making places more habitable for troops. We have full time, Regular Army Regiments, and TA ones. :)
     
  19. Pyrrhic

    Pyrrhic Well-Known Member

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    TA stands for Territorial Army, and it's the reserves. I'm not sure how it measures up to Canadian and American reserves though. We aren't seen as reinforcements really. For instance the first time I go out to Afghanistan, I'll be a junior officer looking after full time soldiers and I will have a full time senior officer looking after me. I won't deploy with my own Regiment, but I will deploy with the Royal Engineers.
     
  20. Mervs Mum

    Mervs Mum Doula & Mum of 3!

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    Do you have any idea when your first tour would be, assuming you finish your training to schedule? :)
     

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