There are many factors that contribute to a successful marriage. Certainly, some common items may include open communication, trust, time together and common goals. Trauma and tragedy often stress a marriage to the breaking point, and couples facing such obstacles either come through stronger and more dedicated to each other, or they become distant and withdrawn from one another.
Unfortunately for many military couples, the negative factors may outweigh the positive, and even the strongest marriages are tested when military life calls. However, there are ways to protect your marriage from some of the most common threats you may face as service member.
Military life is tough on a marriage
Military service often changes people. Long deployments, moves to unfamiliar places, uncertainty and risky operations may create a sense of instability in your life and for your spouse. These factors may also make it difficult to spend meaningful time with your spouse, and that often creates distance in a marriage. Additionally, if you have faced an injury or the trauma of battle, you may struggle with the after-effects. These incidents may generate some behaviors that bring added stress to an already challenging marriage, including:
- Anger issues
If you cope with stress by avoiding conversations about crucial issues or refusing to deal with problems, those issues and problems may continue to grow, creating tension in your marriage. Those troubles may stem from your own anxiety from your military experiences, and rather than bringing them into the open to deal with them, you may choose inappropriate methods of coping.
Where to go for help
Counseling is always an alternative, but you may be reluctant to go that path. Your spouse may encourage you to try seeking professional advice and to work on common goals through counseling. He or she may already be meeting with a counselor and learning to make healthy choices. You fully understand the issues and red tape involved in seeking counseling as a service member, and this may cause you to hesitate, despite the benefits it may provide.
Unfortunately for many service members, marriages are a frequent casualty of military life. Military divorce is complex because it involves many protections for both you and your spouse. Many fail to understand the importance of those safeguards until it is too late to claim them. If you are considering divorce, your best first step is to gain as much information as possible about the process and seek a legal advocate with experience in military law.