Open Letter to the Military Girlfriend… Who’s Still a Girlfriend
To be completely honest I’m two glasses of wine in and I feel like speaking some truth tonight. This is just a comic approach to military girlfriend life, enjoy!
He leaves for boot camp (you join a girlfriend support page), he goes to more training after that (you start seeing people get married, aww), he gets stationed... now what? Now you get flooded with cute posts of court house weddings and you naturally get jealous because why not you? Right? Wroooong.
The “girlfriend” title is a touchy subject in the military. Basically no one really considers you serious no matter if you’ve been together for four years or six months. And this isn’t your guy's fault, he is victim to the scrutiny too. You think he likes when people say his girlfriend only wants to marry him for BAH? Of course, there are those girls out there and they have done nothing but bring a bad reputation to the MILSO (Military Significant Other) name. I get it… he looks hot in uniform and you get to stay home and not work but c’mon girl, that smell after a long day ain’t cute, bet you didn’t think of that when you said, "I do.”
Let me stop right here and say, this is not every case; I love all my military wife friends because they are not the typical MILSO and they mean the world to me and have helped me through hard times, ILY.
The stigma that comes with being a MILSO isn’t always positive and it’s always intrigued me as to why. I searched and searched for blogs and pages on people like me, "the girl who wasn’t marrying her Marine right out of boot camp" but everything I found was centered around being a wife. We had no legit intentions on getting married immediately, we had each other’s love and support and it was enough. JUST KIDDING — I was a wreck, an immature 19-year-old girl who wanted to marry her high school sweetheart, watching everyone else get married and standing on the side lines feeling like the last pick in gym class. This brought some strain to our relationship; all of a sudden he felt like loving me wasn’t enough and he couldn’t give me what I thought I wanted at the time. I feel so bad to this day; no one should feel forced into marriage or feel like they have to because everyone else is. But that’s the reality of the military, the divorce rate is ridiculously high and we wonder why.
The pressure on a MILSO to get married in the world of dependas is high. It’s like girlfriends are the women not special enough to get married (from the eyes of rude dependas). There is a hierarchy I’ve noticed in the MILSO world, girlfriends being the bottom not even really on the totem pole. I think after moving to Hawaii and being able to start my own life with Christian 20 mins away really put into perspective that getting married at 18 wouldn’t have been a good idea for us. There is so much growing and maturing that had to happen first, to make me a better wife someday and him a better husband! But you already know every time he had to leave after spending a 96 with me, I was a wreck. I was even a wreck when he left on Sundays back to base. But I did what I could to make sure he knew his hard work during the week was appreciated, he left with a full belly and left overs for the next day (if it could make it until then LOL), and clean clothes every Sunday. For those who don't know I did move to where he was stationed and went to school there as well, before that he was at his duty station for a year before I moved. So I really had to make sure I was making the most of my time there!
I get it, I sound bitter to most of you but I am grateful for a man who allowed me to grow and to follow my dreams, who brought me back to Earth when my head was surrounded by cute Instagram posts and Facebook announcements.
To all my military girlfriends — stick it out and stand by his side because in the end, you made it through boot camp, deployments, the long days not hearing his voice, and living in another state, without the title of “wife.” So here’s to the girls that have to answer the question: Why aren’t you guys married yet? At the end of the day, wife or not — we love our men and we respect the sacrifice they all have given to keep us safe.
From this MILSO to you,
Stay strong you’ll get that ring someday.
P.S. — Thank you to all those who serve and have served our country!
About the author
We are 2 college girls living everyday on a budget, & trying not to forget to take care of ourselves! Between both of our experiences we have seen it all. We hope we can share our stories and tips on how to navigate through college life