Here’s What Many Of Us Think But Won’t Say:
this is advice all people need when talking to or helping an Army wife.
Please don’t be fooled and marvel at how well I’m handling the deployment. We might look good on the outside, but there are plenty of trials and tears just inside the door that I don’t want to burden you with.
Please don’t just keep me in your prayers. Take an additional 30 seconds and write me a short note, too.
Please don’t wait for me to ask for help. I won’t. I’m a stubborn Army wife who thinks I can handle everything by myself. Except, I can’t.
Please don’t ask what I need. I’m likely to tell you, “Nothing, we’re fine.”
Please don’t accept that as an answer if you do ask. There are lots of things I need, I’m just too proud to admit it.
Please don’t just sit and wonder what you can do to help. Brainstorm for one minute about what a single mom worried about her husband might need and try any one of those things. Or read on.
Please don’t call between 5 and 8 p.m. unless you’re coming over to help. Trying to feed, bathe and bed the kid(s) is a two- to three- hour process.
Please don’t just wave as I pass your house trying to walk my two dogs and the stroller in the cold wind. Ask if you can walk my dogs for me — or with me — some time.
Please don’t say the time has flown since my husband left. It hasn’t, and the days are actually getting longer now that we’re past the half-way point.
Please don’t grouse to your spouse about my Christmas lights still being up nearly a month after Christmas. Knock on my door and ask if you can take them down and put them away for me.
Please don’t assume I eat three square meals a day. Actually, I don’t eat three square meals a week. Make a double batch next time you’re cooking for your family and drop one by my place. Don’t cook? Bring a bottle of wine.
Please don’t invite me over or out for dinner. You don’t want to deal with my toddler at meal time, I promise. Offer to baby-sit for one hour so I can take an uninterrupted hot shower, get a hair cut or go to the gym.
Please don’t think I don’t want to go out to dinner. It is hard to remember the last time I had a quiet, uninterrupted night out with other adults.
Please don’t forget our birthdays, anniversaries or other special occasions. The one who usually celebrates with us is gone, so many of these days pass like they were any other.
Please don’t feel responsible for helping me with everything. Just do one thing, every once in a while. If you’re really inclined, recruit a friend or family member to do something else.
Please don’t underestimate how helpful you can be. Even a kind word or a hug would be great.
Please don’t be offended if I don’t thank you properly. Anyone who does anything for my family is a hero in my eyes. I feel guilty that I needed the help in the first place. I can’t thank you enough.