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Advice for the newly betrothed

AprilJ90

New Member
So I admit I've been lurking for awhile. My fiance is currently in Primary in Corpus while I'm in Baton Rouge finishing up my last year of nursing school. I'll commission in the Nurse Corps next December so we still have some time to figure out details but really I just wanted your advice/wisdom on some things that are on my mind.

1) Marriage during flight school (even a Justice of Peace), what are the benefits/cons? We want to get co-located and yes I know it's not a guarantee unfortunately.

2) For those who have been married during flight school, what did your day to day life look like?
For those who waited to get married, any regrets?

3). For the nurses out there, how difficult was it to achieve co-location with your SO?

4). Just for dual active marriages in general, any and all advice is appreciated! :)
 

squorch2

he will die without safety brief
pilot
My wife is a navy nurse. Colo is not usually an issue, but can have bad effects on your career if his moves don't correspond with what you "should" do next and vice versa. If your fiance is USMC, things get harder again, as the Big 3 (Bethesda, Portsmouth, San Diego) for the most part are not near USMC bases. It's fairly easy to shift PRDs for colo, but again has bad effects on your FITREP and career. Shift work sucks for both of you - never seeing each other gets old quickly.

Bottom line: it's harder than non-dual marriages. If you know that going in, you'll be better off.

Also, I can't say this enough - DO NOT GET MARRIED IN FLIGHT SCHOOL.
 

MasterBates

Well-Known Member
1) Marriage during flight school (even a Justice of Peace), what are the benefits/cons? We want to get co-located and yes I know it's not a guarantee unfortunately.

2) For those who have been married during flight school, what did your day to day life look like?
For those who waited to get married, any regrets?

3). For the nurses out there, how difficult was it to achieve co-location with your SO?

4). Just for dual active marriages in general, any and all advice is appreciated! :)
1- Benefits? BAH. Don't have to live in the Q. BAH if Geo Baching living in Q. IF you can.
Cons- Married.

2- Wake up, deal with email bitching about cockroaches in her apartment. What? You want me to drive 800 miles to kill a fucking bug? Kill it yourself.
Go to gym. Get back from gym, voice mail bitching about how I never answer her call when it's important. Call back. Spend next hour talking her out of quitting school with 1 semester to go on a full ride. Go fly. Get home, eat. Deal with another email bitching that her car is making funny noise. It's under warranty, bring it to the Ford dealer A HALF MILE FROM THE GODDAMN APARTMENT. Get phone call. Convince her that "no, it's not true that HC-4 never deploys and they just fly around Sig and go to Naples/Rome/Milan every weekend". Go to bed at 2130 for 0500 brief. Get woken up at 2300 to listen to some BS about how some other SNA wife called her fat. Find tactful way to say "well, you have gained 30 pounds in 2 months".. Give up on that and just agree with other SNA wife. Hear screaming, hang up, unplug phone.

3- Can't comment

4- Can't comment
 

SynixMan

Professional CCX Wrangler
pilot
Contributor
I walked down the "Planning a wedding during flight school" path for exactly 4 weeks before I had to put the kibosh on it. She was "going to plan everything so it didn't stress me out". No such thing, and she's a pretty low maintenance woman. You're going to have thoughts about colors, flowers, table settings, etc and want to run it by us, when the biggest thing we're concerned about is studying for the next morning's briefing. I know a few friends who are trying to do it in the HTs, and I pity them. Additionally, the TRACOM Squadrons can only work with you so much, as their job is to get you through as fast as they can to meet goals. "Oh, you want time off to get married? Congrats! That's a big life changing event. Tell you what, we'll give you a three day weekend whenever you need. Just be prepared to come back Monday ready to fly." Your hubby to be will be having nightmares about his Instrument Checkride while he's saying "I Do".

It wasn't easy, but I explained to her that it wasn't going to work just now. We're doing the courthouse thing later this year to get her covered benefits wise, and the "Wedding Proper" will be later down the line when it can work. I can't wait to read that statement a year from now and laugh at myself for being naive, but it's the best we can do now.
 

villanelle

Nihongo dame desu
Contributor
Lest you haven't already deduced this subtle fact, there is a certain contingent here that is none-too-warm-and-fuzzy about holy matrimony.

I'm a civilian, so I can't help much with the co-location business. I've seen people do it (mostly pilot to pilot, though I knew a pilot-NFO couple and a pilot-SEAL couple) and generally they've mostly ended up in the same places around the same time, but not necessarily on the same deployment schedule so while they lived in the same place, that doesn't mean they saw each other much. It looks damn hard, but some of them have made it work. Others haven't.

Trophy Hinge and I were dating/engaged in flight school, not married, but it wasn't really a big deal. He was busy. I got that. He didn't have a ton of time to play with me. I found ways to occupy myself. (This, by the way, certainly didn't magically change after flight school.) It was fine. The day to day life was me hating the shithole that was Milton; looking unsuccessfully for a job for the few months I was there; playing on the internet; reading a lot; quizzing him on EPs and trying to find creative ways to do so; having him come home late/get up early/both; knowing that when he got home, we'd probably eat together, maybe chat a bit, and then he'd be studying again and I'd need to find something to occupy myself; maybe catching a movie on the weekend, and having lots of sex because we were broke and that was free. (We are no longer broke, but I'm still cheap. ;)) It really wasn't much different than life after flight school, when he isn't deployed.

I was also planning our wedding (which was in CA, while we were in FL) and I managed not to bother him with things I knew he didn't give a shit about. Or I'd ask him, "Do you care at all about the menu?" and either he didn't or, if he did, I'd narrow it down to a few choices and ask him if any of them worked for him. Our wedding took up probably 10 minutes a week of his time. I guess it helped that I couldn't have cared less myself about what the forks looked like or whether the bridesmaids dresses would match the tile on the floor of the reception hall. I guess the point is that you have to know he's going to be busy, and you can't be offended that your wedding, or the funny story about what the cat did that day, or the crappy conversation you had with your sister, or whatever else just cant be his priority. It may be important to him, but he has more urgent matters to attend to. Again, this isn't going to change after flight school. You accept it and move on and learn that when things are crazy (which is always), you have to edit yourself a bit. Demand his time when necessary, but help him out by not making him choose you or the stack of fitreps he's supposed to edit by tomorrrow, when it isn't necessary.

There aren't a lot of pros (a bit more money in his pay check), but there aren't a lot of cons, either. I'd say you should pick your wedding date based in when you feel ready and want to get married. If you do it in flight school, JoP is probably the way to go, as it isn't especially feasible to plan a big shindig. Some girls can't give up their princess day dream wedding, in which case flight school isn't the time to do it. Then again, neither really is any other time while he's in the Navy, but in my experience, the FRS was at least slightly easier to plan around, though with you joining as well, things could get more difficult, not less.
 

Brunes

New Member
pilot
1) Bit more BAH and that's about it since you are dual military- You'd get the dependent benefits if you were a civilian- but you get access to that stuff anyways. Cons- All the normal ones that people cite about being married. It's a lot of stress to go to flight school- Adding the "getting confortable living with you" phase into that make it that much worse.
2) Woke up for my brief or duty, maybe kissed the wife good bye-maybe she was at work already. Talked by text or phone to figure out dinner or going out plans. Got home and did whatever, studied, slept, etc. My wife was pregnant during Primary and is fairly independent... so she was able to deal with issue without much help from me. Be ready for that- You gotta do stuff for yourself sometimes.
3)No idea- Coast Guard co-lo's have been good to me and my wife.
4)It's a lot of work. Being DINKs is nice and most wardrooms I've been in have pretty decent social lives. Same for the geographical areas- Tampa, Pensacola, NOLA...but you aren't going to be together all the time or even often. My wife stands about 12-15 twelve hour watches a month. I stand 6-8 24 hours watches Very few of those over lap...so that 18-23 days out of the month that we might get to have 1 meal together or sleep in the same place at the same time. For lots of folks it works great....keep in mind that at some point someone's career has to become the family priority. Some couples make it to CDR (My XO's wife is retiring now that he was picked up for O6)...So make it until LT....It's all a mater of priorities and goals....

GOOD LUCK!!!!
 

fattestfoot

In it for the naked volleyball
I stand 6-8 24 hours watches
Wow, really? That seems like an awful lot. Is that a community thing, or is it just how the CG is?

Anyone else: how does that number compare to the Navy?

In 6 years of the Army, I only had to do it like 4 or 5 times (although, they don't have ships to guard).
 

Brunes

New Member
pilot
Wow, really? That seems like an awful lot. Is that a community thing, or is it just how the CG is?

Anyone else: how does that number compare to the Navy?

In 6 years of the Army, I only had to do it like 4 or 5 times (although, they don't have ships to guard).
It's a norm for NOLA-We stand a 2 crew ready- 1 crew on base ready to go in 30 min, 1 crew on a phone recall for an hour to launch

About 1/2 of them are cell phone recall-but duty starts at 1530-so I get in about 1430, do the e-mail, messages, skeds review, get the OPS brief, then go for an evening flight. Get back between 915 and 1115 depending on the trainer and the time of year, get home, eat and roll into bed next to Mrs Brunes. Wake up to the cell phone going off @ 2AM or the alarm @ 6. Go to work. Get a full day at the desk. Come home-Have dinner with the wife and Brunes Jr. Tuck him in and get some house stuff done....Go to sleep. For an alert duty-Get back from the trainer and sleep on base. See the family the next day.

This past month-I think I had 7 or 8 duties....Life goes on.
 

ChunksJR

Student. Again. :)
pilot
Contributor
The day to day life was me hating the shithole that was Milton
That's key no matter where you go...make sure you have your own life and you'll be fine.

Again, this isn't going to change after flight school. You accept it and move on and learn that when things are crazy (which is always), you have to edit yourself a bit.
Damn hot. Write a book. I'll buy it.

Demand his time when necessary, but help him out by not making him choose you or the stack of fitreps he's supposed to edit by tomorrrow, when it isn't necessary.
Sounds like a shitty time manager. Oh well, so am I, but I don't do my evals at home. Was he on a carrier??? They're not that hard, people.

Some girls can't give up their princess day dream wedding, in which case flight school isn't the time to do it.
If you can't flex, don't marry a military guy, period. Get over that princess crap and do the deed...or don't.
 

smittyrunr

Staff Weenie
pilot
Contributor
1) Marriage during flight school (even a Justice of Peace), what are the benefits/cons? We want to get co-located and yes I know it's not a guarantee unfortunately.
To clear up some info above: You do not get more BAH (not less either), unless you have kids. You will each get single BAH until one of you claims a dependant. Once you establish co-location, and then are not co-located during follow-on orders, one of you can get an extra $250/month in FSA (family sep pay). There is Officer co-location, but it is far less supported than enlisted co-lo. You both need to submit co-lo requests. While you can submit the request anytime, the instruction specifies it will not be considered while one or both of you is in a training pipline.
Benefits to getting married in flight school: You are not likely to be deployed for the ceremony. If something happens to either of you, a fiance/e does not have any standing to be notifed by the command if you aren't on the Page-2. (no SGLI/death benefit/etc payments in the worst case here) Being already married makes the co-lo request easier at the end of the training pipline- basically if you wait until after the FRS to get married, now he's reporting to a squadron on deployment which puts off the marriage another 6 months, during which time you are up for orders, and without being married, have no standing to request co-location.
Cons: Mostly as described above, we got married while we were both in flight school, decided to have the ceremony at Christmas and were actually able to take a week-long honeymoon by doing it that way (you will have a leave period over the holidays.) It's not going to be a "normal" newly-wed experience (whatever that is!)

2) For those who have been married during flight school, what did your day to day life look like?
For those who waited to get married, any regrets?
There really is no daily routine- the flight schedule is never certain until at least 1600 the day before (and often later). If you are lucky enough to be stationed together in flight school (or even if you are there for a visist), he may have a couple night flights and you think, "Great, I'm going to arrange to go in late tomorrow morning and we'll sleep in and go out for brunch." In the meantime, the weather rolls in, the squadron cancels the night schedule, and suddenly he has a simulator at 0700. He may fly weekends- he may not know he is going to fly on a weekend until Thursday. (Makes it difficult to plan a weekend together whether you are co-located or not)

3). For the nurses out there, how difficult was it to achieve co-location with your SO?
Can't comment on nursing specifically, it has not been easy for 2 aviators in the same community. A lot depends on how easy your detailers are to work with, and of course they change every couple years. Right now, BUPERS is not interested in funding extra PCS moves- so they are unlikely to move one of you early just for co-location.
4). Just for dual active marriages in general, any and all advice is appreciated! :)
We've been married 7.5 years, while I would like to see more of my husband, I have no regrets. It has become a mission of mine to make sure people considering dual-mil marriages are aware of the regulations and what to expect, so I can provide the source documents on anything listed above if you need them. Feel free to PM with any other, or more specific questions.
 

FlyBoyd

Out to Pasture
pilot
Read this thread too...http://www.airwarriors.com/community/index.php?threads/marriage-at-flight-school.35927/#post-637435

My post in there (#17) sums up my thoughts on having her around in flight school. I'll add that we got married JoP just before Primary and had a church wedding during Advanced. I don't remember getting asked many questions about what I wanted and that was fine with me. I was one of the first dudes to go through USAF advanced and was getting ass raped by the Air Force shenanigans...so you could say I was pretty busy. The church wedding thing was very important to her family so we caved and did it. Looking back it was the right call. We were basically broke and she is frugal so I let her plan the whole thing. I got a three day weekend and flew on Monday. The only drawback was there was no real honeymoon. Still, 16 years later, we have never been on a "honeymoon." Then again, we lived together for over a year between the JoP wedding and the church wedding so a honeymoon would have been just another trip at that point.
 

Fallonflyr

Well-Known Member
pilot
Got married during T-2 FCLP's by Beeville TX JP. She was in the Army, me Marine. Still together 27 years later. You can make anything work with the right person.
 

cecilia850

You can't fix stupid.
Just know that his time [like yours] is no longer his own- so do what you can to be his biggest support system. Whether it's going out of your way to make him a hot meal when gets home from a late SIM or flight, to just letting him do his own thing to veg out after hours of studying. And no matter how pissed you are that his schedule will ruin plans you may make, just keep it to yourself. He is under enough stress and does not need to come home to it. My fiance and I are both military and our rule is to leave work at work. From what I know so far, it takes a strong, independent low maintenance woman to have a successful mil-to-mil relationship. Have your own friends and your own hobbies. It will really help when he has to leave on short notice and you have a week to yourself... Always remember, patience is a virtue.
 
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