logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
Painting
Heart Disease
Horror Literature
Dating
Hiking & Backpacking
SF/Fantasy Books
Healthy Foods


dailyclick
All times in EST

Autism Spectrum Disorders: 4:00 PM

Full Schedule
g
g Military Families Site

BellaOnline's Military Families Editor

g

Rank Can Also Apply to Military Families

Guest Author - Marie Indyk

As an Army veteran, I understand the importance of respecting the rank division in the military. Officers are the leaders who draft the orders and enlisted are the ones who make those orders happen. It was inappropriate for officers and enlisted to mix socially, and although it did happen, consequences could be severe if the lines were crossed.

Since I separated from the military over seven years ago I had a couple of babies, went back to school, and completely settled back into civilian life. Barracks became dorms, 17:00 became 5:00, and running before daybreak was a thing of the past. That is, until the day my husband decided to raise his right hand and sign up for active duty once again and I landed in yet another role: military spouse.

Rank is clear for service members: it's boldly attached to everyone's uniforms and job descriptions and expectations are in line with that rank. Yet now that I've entered the military spouse realm, roles are much more murky.

It's been described as "rankism" or even plain "snobbery" but it appears that yes, rank seems to bleed over into military families as well. When we arrived at our new base in Japan, I met many friendly wives more than willing to answer my jetlagged newcomer questions, but even though we were similarly dressed in shorts and t-shirts and shouted after our wandering kids, a line that had been drafted by our spouses also existed between us.

If you are new to the military, deciphering these unspoken rules may take some time. Officers wives tend to associate with other officer wives, and the higher ranking the wife, the more respect she deserves. Expect to find the head of the Officer Spouses Club to be the wife of a higher ranking officer. Similarly, enlisted spouses have their clubs and tend to feel more at ease with other enlisted spouses. No one wants their supervisor's wife sipping coffee in their house when they come home from a long day at work.

This social division between officers and enlisted and their families allows them to decompress when they are not in unifirm. If an officer has a few too many beers at home with his wife on the weekend, he doesn't want one of the soldiers he supervises spreading the word around the office. This divisionan split even deeper between officer and enlisted ranks, such as between privates and NCOs (non-commissioned officers) or between lieutenants and majors on up.

So what if your child comes home from school with a new friend who is the child of a service member who is a lower or higher rank that your spouse? Thankfully, I haven't had to face that issue yet, but definitely expect to in the next fifteen years before my husband retires. Kids socializing with "other ranked" children seems to be more appropriate but the parents may not want to attend the birthday party barbeque out of respect.

The bottom line is (in military speak), there are no clear rules for family members. Use your best instincts but do not turn away friends because a strong support structure is critical for military families. If something doesn't feel right or if your spouse seems uncomfortable then it may be time to slightly distance yourself from the relationship. In the end, everyone seems to settle into their comfortable place after a few bumps and u-turns.
This site needs an editor - click to learn more!

Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Twitter Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Facebook Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to MySpace Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Del.icio.us Digg Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Yahoo My Web Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Google Bookmarks Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Stumbleupon Add Rank+Can+Also+Apply+to+Military+Families to Reddit




RSS | Related Articles | Editor's Picks Articles | Top Ten Articles | Previous Features | Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Military Families Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2013 by Marie Indyk. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Marie Indyk. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact BellaOnline Administration for details.

g


g features
Volunteering on Military Installations

A Salute to Military Moms

Childcare for Military Families

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2013 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor