You Are Not Naive For Being a MILSO

I’ve heard it at least three times since I came back from Hawaii…how silly or naive I am for being a military significant other. I started a new job at a bar to make a little extra cash and wore my new Navy hoodie I got in Hawaii. A man, who I had met one other time, asked me with enthusiasm who I knew in the Navy while I was counting some money. I piped up, excited and said, “My boyfriend!” and his expression instantly changed. The brightness vanished. He just replied with, “Oh” and went on talking to someone else sitting next to him.

I stood there honestly confused, money held idly in my hands. What just happened?  I kept wondering if maybe his reaction would have been different if I said my cousin or sibling was in the Navy instead. I couldn’t figure out why my boyfriend being in the military was so different.

About the same scenario happened a few days later and I was called “silly” for having plans to move in with Taylor. Silly? Isn’t that what most people do? Find someone you love, move in with them, get married and start a family, etc.? The man who called me such is married, lives with his wife and has a child. But my having a boyfriend in the military somehow made my plans childish.  I don’t get it.

As a military significant other, you will get a wide variety of reactions when you tell people about it. Some will make you feel good and others not so much. Realize that the things people say and think are simply just thoughts. That’s it.

Just because someone thinks something does not make it a fact. It doesn’t change what is right for you and your relationship. I have always made a conscious effort to do what is the best thing for my life, my plans and my situation. What I have planned is what I know is right for me.

That’s all that should matter.

And that’s all that should matter for you too. The man at the bar only knew me for a total of an hour and does not know my life or Taylor. The “silly” man does know me fairly well but that still does not mean his opinion should have any weight on my choices. Only you know the entirety of your situation and only you can make the right choices. The only one living with your decisions is you. Keep your head up. Be strong and be smart. Embrace those who are warm and kind towards you. Opinions are only opinions and the only one that should ever count in your own life is your own.

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