New to the Military Wife Thing. Not sure what to expect.

Keyontia - posted on 11/19/2009 ( 24 moms have responded )

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Hello. My boyfriend just joined the Army. He's in boot camp as we speak. I'm nervous because my son is a very active, very accomplished 11 yr old athlete and I'm worried about if he will be able to continue that when we move with my boyfriend after he graduates. I'm also worried about how different life will be for me. I'm a student and we aren't married, yet. Will us not being married effect my going to school, living with him in any kind of way. How accepting to newcomers are the people on base? Can we even live on base if we aren't married yet? As you can see, I have a lot of questions and concerns, so any info would be nice. Thanks in advance.

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Tressa - posted on 09/17/2010

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Not sure about Army but my husband is in the airforce. You can live together if you want , you just cant live on base together until your married love. My husband and i were together for 4 years until we got married but we lived together in a house. Sometimes active duty has to jump from base to base , which means school to school but just remember being together as a family is much more important than a sport, but with that being said you can always... enroll your child in the sport at that school.. The bases are usally very welcoming as well. We just moved from Fl to Nm and wow what a difference that was. I only know about 5 ppl here. Bahha.. Have to get into meeting new ppl. Anymore ?'s i can help feel free to ask, my husband will help me answer.
Tressa Benner

Ashley - posted on 11/19/2009

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I am a Military wife. My husband is in the Marines. As far as I know you have to be married for him to have base housing or be able for him to move off base with you unless he rates it. That's how it is for the Marines, I'm not sure how it is for the Army tho. I have found that once you start meeting other people they are very welcoming, it was just the meeting part that was hard for me. Sorry I couldn't be more help.

Laura - posted on 09/19/2010

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Everyone is basically right, only my husband and I got married after his training but during his training he got extra BAH because he had an appartment back home. What we did was I mailed him the rent release signed by the landlord, he signed it, brought it to the people at financial and they gave him extra money so he could have a place to go when he came home. Only thing with that though is you have to find a landlord willing to work with you while you wait for all the paper work to go through. Other than that though they are right, being a fiancee even has no meaning to them what-so-ever. Hope that helps.. (:

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hola! i've been a gf when my hubby n I were dating and going thru a deployment. I was very lucky that my hubby is very communicative, have friends whom already deployed, and I worked in a Military Medical Facility so I had experience with the military n how things work. There are so many programs for both you and your son once you are married. check out militaryonesource, mwr for your base ( just google his base), also there are education scholarships for military spouses, sports and great afterschool programs, of course your BAH ( monies for housing) and tricare, and newcomer orientations. We lived in my apartment and he helped with rent out of his own pocket (he lived in barracks) and was great but the benefits really help. Military life is constant change. I would get frustrated because I like to plan things way in advance and I cant do that now and now plan more in a timewindow instead of driving myself insane because things dont go as planned. Expect to explain a lot of what your soldier is going thru and what you're all going thru to family and friends. You will be the communication hubb for keeping everyone informed. THe Army is great about helping soldiers and their families with anything they need, from car seats, to interview clothes for spouses, daycare, community programs and counseling to help you with adjusting in a healthy way. Take it one day at a time and it wont be so overwhelming, constantly adjusting will be part of your life and its best to keep things in perspective. You soldier will be given a lot of information so make sure he passes that on to you. good luck!

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I am a military wife. My husband is in the Army. As far as i know you have to be married to live on POST with him. The BHA is less when you are not married and depending on his rank coming out will tell if he will get that or not being married.. once you start meeting people it is easy and people seem to be nice because they tend to remember how it was to be new. They have get togethers and events that cause you to meet more wives...I hope this helps some what

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Heather - posted on 09/20/2010

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Based on my experience as a marine wife and my brother in law being in the army the rules are typically the same. Until you are married you cannot live on base but if he rates living off base as a single guy (varies based on unit) you can live together no problem. As for doing things on base before we were married I just had to have a temp pass to drive on base but couldn't shop at the PX or anything without him being present. One word of advice DO NOT rush into marrying him just to live together or get other "benefits" (they aren't that great). You can live near the base he gets stationed at and all that until you decide to be married and usually he can spend lots of days/nights off base without actually "living" off base. That is what we did.

Cassie - posted on 09/18/2010

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I'm a Navy wife and like the other ladies have said you have to be married to live on base and get any benefits. You can still go to FRG meetings (family readiness group meetings) in the Navy as a gf but a lot of the wives won't be helpful to be honest. There are those who will help you with whatever you need though you just have to find those ones and they'll make good friends. In Navy housing up here there are civilians living here. Sometimes they get a better price then we do. It's all going to depend where you end up stationed because the needs of the military families are going to come before the needs of those not married as far as housing lists go. I wouldn't move until he gets settled and checks the area out and sees what the money situation is going to be. Just going in he isn't going to have a lot of pay to work with and with no dependants he won't get the extra housing allowance. I know in the Navy you have to be E4 to get permission to live off base without being married and even then it's if the barracks is full. You have to have command approval. So bottom lining it I would wait to move until he finds out everything you need to know in advance and gets settled in his job because he will most likely be crazy busy and not have a lot of home time for awhile.. Good luck!!

Lorraine - posted on 09/17/2010

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One thing that really helped me was this book that I found on one of the bases. It's called Married to the Military: A Survival Guide for Military Wives, Girlfriends, and Women in Uniform. I would really look into it. They have information about everything in there. As far as living on base, I really don't think that you can unless you are a spouse. I don't think that the both of you not being married will effect your schooling in any way. I'm sure there is always somewhere to go. If the both of you decide to get married, I know that right now the military can help you with school a little. I think the program is called My CAA? Something like that and the military will give up to $6,000 for school. It might not be alot depending on what you are going for but it helps.

Amy - posted on 09/17/2010

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We have been with the Army for 4 years. I actually married my husband on his basic training graduation day at a little courthouse. When you are not married, you can not get any benefits from the military. No housing allowance, no medical, you have to pay out of pocket if you wanted to move where ever he gets stationed. now, if you were to get married, you and your son would get put on his orders and the army would pay to move you and all your household goods to the new duty station. You can pick to live on post (then they take all of your Housing allowance) or live off post (if you can find a place under your housing allowance) to try to save money, but you would be responsible for heat/ electric bills, where on post, you wouldn't. Every duty station has a different BAH(basic housing allowance) rate.. for example- In fort polk, LA our BAH was about 810 a month, where as, in fort drum, NY, our BAH is about 1,245 a month, because the cost of living is so much higher. Your son would still be able to be involved in athletics and everything, there's usually alot for kids and families to do. i don't know if every school on a duty station has uniforms, but all the ones i have been to has had them. People are very accepting, you just have to look for the right people. you should never feel like you are being talked down to because of another spouse's husband's rank. (i've seen a lot of wives do this) now, with schooling... with being a mother and/or an Army wife, you can qualify for certain grants and scholarships. You would have to transfer credits if you were to move away and whatnot. If you live with him or get married, of course it will effect your income. any money he makes is now considered the household income. But with that, You will have a household size of 3, and may even be able to qualify for financial aid, if for some reason the grants/scholarships didn't work out.
anyway... i hope this helps.. i tried to pack as much info as possible in this! if you have any more questions feel free to msg me or ask!

Katherine - posted on 09/17/2010

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Hi I'm Kat and we are stationed at Ft. Sill. I've been an Army wife for 3 years.
It's true you can't live with each other, and that trully sucks. You also will not have any benefits (health care, school, PX, comissary, nada).
As far as meeting people, I find that its just like anyplace else lol. You have the good, the bad, and the whatever. Sometimes when I'm around certain people it reminds me of high school what with all the drama and rumors! I have made a few really good friends though, and if you stay positive about it and brush off all the negitive people you will do fine.
As far as the sports with your son I'm sure it varies from post to post. They usually have a pretty good selection though. I know here they have baseball, basketball, football, soccer, wrestling and karate.
Now I know you don't want to marry your man just for the benefits or just so that you can live together, I even understand that. My hubby and I had our first kid and all before we decided to get married. But I can tell by your post that you seem to love him a lot. Maybe you should consider getting married. If not, then why? Thats what you need to ask yourself hun, "why not get married?" Can't you just get married because you love him and we want to spend your life with him?

Crystal - posted on 08/22/2010

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u have to be married or he has to have a dependent like his child i have been with my husband almost 5 yrs he has been in the army 8 yrs theres some good and some bad with the army life so good luck

Kristy - posted on 08/10/2010

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i been married for a year with my husband thats in the army and im still getting use to being a military wife

Joanna - posted on 12/10/2009

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Everyone is telling you exactly how it is. Gotta be married to live together on base. Usually a soldier must be an E-5 (Sergeant) and higher to live off base. Unless he is an officer, now they get to live off base, regardless of rank. But it doesn't sound like he is in officer training. When you do get married, he will collect extra pay for his dependents, and BAQ which is to help with housing off base. You will usually have a wait of a year to get into base housing. Once you get into base housing he will no longer get the BAQ pay, b/c you are living rent free in housing.
Is your son also his son? If your BF is listed as the father by birth or by adoption then he may be able to qualify to live off base b/c he has a child as a dependent. That will depend on his commanding officer or 1st Sergeant. But you still cannot live in housing on base b/c you are not married.
Most cities have athletic programs through the city. You will have to go online and check that particular city's parks and recreational programs. Then there is the school your son will attend, they may have athletics. Moving is stressful, but the Army does have resources for the families, since you are not married, the soldier, your BF will have to utilize those resources for you and your son.
But there is allot of information online about cities. Civilians move all the time as well when their jobs transfer them. So there is resources out there in all communities as well.
Good luck.

Shanell - posted on 12/10/2009

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Hey my husband is also at fort benning for training. You have to be married in order to live on the base and you will also have to get a military ID. (I'm still in the process of getting my ID the recruiter is dicking around with me). You won't find out where he will get stationed until after he graduates or on graduation day. I'm also new to this to so don't feel alone.

Mallory - posted on 11/20/2009

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I have been an Army Wife for 6 years. You can still got to school, but won't be able to use the services the Army offers until you have a military ID. Unfortunately, you won't be able to get a military ID until you are married. You also won't be able to live with him. He will be in the barracks. Once you are married then you can apply for base housing or find a house off base to live in. Most bases offer athletics through schools and programs. People are almost always accepting of newcomers. We were are all newcomers, usually every few years since we move so often. We all know what it is like to move somewhere and not know anyone. Best of luck to you. If you have any other questions you can email me. duecewife43004@yahoo.com

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I live here on post at Ft. Benning. You have to be married to live here. He won't be able to live off post unless his married or at least an E-5.

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I am an Army wife. You will have to be married to be able to live with him on base and he is suppose to live on base in the barracks if he is not married unless he can prove it will be better for him to live off of base. Which if you and him decide to get married then you can either decide to live on base in housing or either off base and will get a housing allowance. Which if decide to live on base once you start meeting people it is no different then living at home exceot you have new friends and places hang out and what not.

Chrystine - posted on 11/19/2009

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My husband has been Air Force for 23 years now and you have to be married for any benefits including living on base. Being married to a military spouse is better than just being the girlfriend. We are both on our second marriage and we weren't married until two years after we had been together, it was hard because I had to be with him in order to get on base because I couldn't get an ID yet. We got married in 2002 when he got back from where he was for 911. The benefits were better and his pay will be better.

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yea u cant be in on base housing....u just hafta to live out in town. but if i remember correctly i believe E4 and under hafta live in the barracks on base so that would mean u wouldnt be able to live together at all. and the army wont move u either u'll hafta pay for ur move. u need to google "army housing onestop" and SAVE IT! u can find out all the info u need for whatever base ur bf maybe stationed at. u'll also be able to learn about the local area too.

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things for a g/f arent really anything...not till u have an id do u really mean anything to military. his pay will stay the same including his bah not until ur married will his pay go up and his bah. u wont be able to do anything on base because like i said lack of ID or even drive on base. i know it sux LOL i mean if you guys are really serious about this then u really need to decide about getting married cuz it's crappy if u arent LOL cuz u wont get anything. also when u do get that ID u can do the MCAA and they'll pay 6k towards your schooling...currently using it for my radiology degree :) it's great!

Keyontia - posted on 11/19/2009

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Hi Cheryl. He is in Ft Benning, GA. I am in Tyler, TX. He just started basic training. His recruiter said that we could live together without being married, but that he would have to pay for everything. My fiance' seems to believe that we can stay in housing, it just wouldn't be free. That doesn't sound rite to me, but I don't argue with a man if I can help it. I don't know what's what. If we can't live together until we are married then I don't know what to do because I'm not going to marry him just so that we can live together, but I love him so much that I don' want to be separated from him more than I have to. I know none of you know me, but can you help me find out for sure. He's okay with paying our own bills and rent in order for us all to be together. I just want to know if that's even an option, and if little league sports r usually available. I don't even know where he's going after training, yet. Thx to u all.

Cheryl - posted on 11/19/2009

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I am new to this also but I am getting use to it as we speak lol..But yea you guys are not gonna be able to live together until yall are married all single soldiers have to live on base in the barricks..it sucks I know but also yall dont need to rush into marriage either if yall havent been together for a while..take things slow because just being in the army is gonna be stressfull enough for the both of you..I wish you the best of luck and if you need anuthing please feel free to ask my email is cherylstapleton@rocketmail.com where are yall at now? we are in South Carolina

Tonyeka - posted on 11/19/2009

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Hi. Sorry but until you get married he will be in the barracks. After you get married you get your ID card and apply for housing. When we lived in housing I loved it. Our neighbors were nice and our kids played together. There may be some programs to help you at the education center at his base for school but you will only be able to benefit after you get married. I would check out the school system online you may get more info for your son. I hope this helped a little. Have a blessed day.

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