Connecting to Other Military Families

Section Two: Establishing Connections

Establishing connections with other military families will help you feel supported during deployment.

Connecting with other military families can help you better cope with the challenges of deployment and alleviate tension associated with upcoming separation, especially if this is a first time deployment. Many military families find that it is helpful to have someone to talk to who is going through the same experience. A supportive military family network presents a sounding board with others experiencing the same situation and can help to establish realistic expectations for the deployment. It also helps keep families informed of important events, deployment information, and unit information. Roll your mouse over the image to the right to explore the benefits of participating in a Virtual Family Readiness Group (VFRG) – just one way to establish connections during deployment!

There are many ways to connect with other military families during deployment.

One way for Service Members to connect is to discuss military duties with his or her family and with other families. The more your family knows about the military, your unit, your specific job, and life during deployment, the less anxious they will be about deployment and the more easily they can stay connected with other military families. If you live near a military base, an installation’s newspaper can be a great resource for learning about upcoming workshops and classes offered to spouses and families, potential information and events that could impact your spouse’s career, and current installation news. A unit or family readiness/support program newsletter can also be helpful. The Military Spouse Magazine also provides insight on other spouses’ perspectives with regard to a wide range of military issues, including deployment, and it offers general news and trends of the military lifestyle.

In today’s world of technology, you and your family should decide what types of connections work best for you.

There are many websites that cater especially to military spouses during deployment with helpful articles, links to other sites, and more. You can also see if the unit has an online networking site, such as a Facebook page or Twitter feed. Social networking sites allow you to follow postings, talk with other spouses for support or to ask specific questions, help plan events, volunteer your time, and feel connected despite distance. In addition to connecting online, there are ways to connect in person, too. Play groups for children or military spouse groups are often available with convenient meeting locations and times.