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The Emotional Side To Deployment

The strain and sensitivity is going to vary from person to person.

Depending on the individual you are, it can affect you to a greater or lesser degree than someone else. You may be hyper sensitive and the whole situation is a mess. You may be middle of the road when although things hurt you a great deal it doesn’t imbed itself in you quite as deeply. Yes you will hurt no matter what type of character you are but perhaps the coping of it can vary.

 

Remember, no matter what you are like this is normal. (If nothing affects you and you don’t care then that means you are a cold fish! and I haven’t met one yet.) You are exactly the same as thousands of families and friends who likewise will be having identical struggles. You are not alone in your stress.

 

Leading up to the deployment your time is very precious and will fly by. Make the most of it. Before they go, be prepared for a bit of tension and the odd argument. The build up to them going can quite often be the hardest time. With all the pre deployment training and preparations, they have a lot to do and you just wish it would start so you can start ticking off the days. Friction between you is bound to occur.

 

Do try and have enjoyable days or evenings out that will boost you both up. Go out for a meal or to favourite places. Alternatively you might find it nicer to just stop in. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you make the most of being together. Somehow, even if it is for their sake, try and put your anxieties aside and simply enjoy being together.

 

When they have gone, it is important to have friends and family around you throughout the tour. People you can phone at any time whether it is for a long natter or for a big dose of phone sympathy. Going to visit relatives could be a good plan of action and while you are there ask them to get involved with contacting your man and to be a support for you both.

 

You will need them and they can hopefully be the ones you can rely on to help in getting you through. There are no guarantees there though as eager as they seem to say they will be your saviours in bad times, often in reality it turns out that they won’t assist you much at all.

People naturally get wrapped up in their own lives and quite often they won’t realise just how stressful it is to be at home (usually a long way from family) with screaming kids, bills, a mixed bag of other families (some of whom you may not get on with) and a the prospect of 200 nights climbing into bed alone. Don’t take it personally, just keep talking to them and make sure that family know when you need help, it is unlikely they will offer it without you asking.

 

This key to sanity is to try and concentrate more about the good rather than the bad. You both try to be happy. You may put on smiles even when you are feeling desperately low. Fake smiles can look rather plastic but it’s an attempt to show you really are trying to be okay. You promise yourself that nothing will knock you back at all. Oh foolish thought. A silly promise that’s for sure! This ideal belief that everything will run smoothly wasn’t too well thought out after all.  

 

There may be times you get shaken up. Emotions have a life of their own and can get way out of control at any time. This isn't just for  down times but happens when you are happy. NEVER THINK CRYING IS ONLY WHEN YOU ARE SAD AS IT IS OFTEN WHEN YOU ARE HAPPY. You may cry at any moment in time so that you can't exactly put your finger on one specific reason as it is lots of emotions rolled into one. Even if you are not thinking about the situation you burst into tears and may become an uncontrollable mess. This is typical. It can get you down and makes you feel you must be the only one it happens to.

 

Being hyper emotional and perhaps the odd panic attack are also included. Friends and family can seem to be of little help at times and they may tend to back away. They cant feel your extreme inner pain or your inner joy. They may get fed up with your constant talk on just one subject and they can't believe that you are so upset or so overjoyed. To them its unbelievable and exaggerated. You know differently. Sobs ebb away for your smiles to return and will keep you on an even keel. 


YOU ARE STRONGER THAN YOU THINK YOU ARE AND YOU KNOW YOU CAN SWAMP ANY OF THE DOWNS. OF COURSE YOU CAN. YOU WERE NOT BORN TO BE A MISERY SO GIVE YOURSELF SMILES AND SOLDIER ON. YOU NEED A MEDAL TOO FOR THE WAY YOU MANAGE. OK, YOU WON'T GET ONE BUT STICK YOUR CHEST OUT WITH PRIDE. YOU ARE A VERY SPECIAL MARVEL. YOU DESERVE EVERY BIT OF CONFIDENCE AND SO BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. BIG CHEESY GRINS PLEASE ONCE YOU HAVE READ THIS.....NO CHEATING...BIGGER THAN THAT !!