I Love My Husband, But Hate the Politics.

 I just got married to an Air Force officer this past summer, and there are so many things I hate about it.  My husband is a wonderful man, but his job, and the label of "military wife" is making me miserable.

I hate how people treat me now.  They assume that my identity is tied to my husband's profession.  It seems like I am unable to make non-military friends as I work at home, and these are the only people I come into contact since I run a successful music business out of my home.  Even though I am a musician, I have a good education, and I have many hobbies and interests, people seem to ignore that and judge me on my husband's merits now.  One of my closest friends in this horrible city we've been posted to has asked me on numerous occasions to accompany her to military wife functions on the base, telling me that as an officer's wife I should be "representing my husband in a positive way" by playing politics with his co-workers wives, who have very creepily set up a pecking order that mirrors their husbands rank.  A lot of them are very catty, shallow, and, at the risk of sounding snobbish, kind of dumb, and I genuinely do not like most of them.  I tell her (and my other military wife friends) that I am not interested in bake sales, clothing drives, craft days, or whatever else they have going and that I have a lot of work to do with my business and when I'm not doing that I have other personal activities I like to enjoy.  They then tell me that I'm not "setting a good example" for wives whose husbands have a lesser rank than mine, and I am yet again shunned.

I am further depressed by the way my friends back home talk about me.  Before I was married (less than 8 months ago), my friends identified me as a musician, but since then I have been called a housewife more times than I can count, even though I still work.  It is so hurtful that my friends and family don't consider me a professional anymore just because my work has to travel with my husband's career. 

I don't want my identity and social life does not hinge on my husband's career, but I find my life very lonely because I rarely come into contact with non-military personnel outside of my students and clients.  There are limited social programs in my city (all of which either center around the base or the local college) and it is several hours away from my home town.  I feel like such a shut in.  I have my music, my housework, my husband and my cat to entertain me.   

And my husband isn't much entertainment, or support.  Whenever I tell him that I'm lonely or depressed, he just suggests that I hang out with the other wives more often, not hearing my argument that it is not "me" to go around with that crowd.  Then I ask to go home more often and he gets upset, thinking that I'm unhappy with him for some reason.  I dread moving somewhere farther away next year, as I can only see my depression and feeling of isolation getting worse.  All I would really like is to have some friends who I can share my interests with who aren't always using our husband's jobs as the basis of our friendship.  

My husband is going away for three months this spring, and I don't know what I'm going to do with myself.

 

After reading over this post, I now feel that familiar guilt setting in that I have become accustomed to: I'm complaining about relatively small things while other women (and men) are having to deal with knowing their military spouse is overseas in Afghanistan or Iraq.

 Everyone tells me to stop complaining, that it could be worse, but I don't think that my feelings are any less valid or damaging just because he comes home for dinner every night.

 

lirit lirit
22-25, F
Feb 21, 2009