military nurses/spouses

  1. hey guys,
    i have a few questions and have no idea how to start to find my answers.

    my fiance is thinking about re-enlisting in the army.
    he tried airforce but they are not taking any re-enlists right now.
    so he wants to go the army route, however he wont re-enlist unless i agree and it is something i may want to do. (he was active army for 7 years, then reserves for three.) did the whole airborne ranger/sniper route for 6 years. the last year he was active he became a medic. he then became reserves and got his lpn then this last year got his rn. he has been talking to a recruiter for the last few weeks, today went to meps to take some computer test, thurs goes for his physical. swears he has not re-enlisted YET.

    I do not come from a military family, have no idea how the military/army treats spouses and families. I talked to his mom, but she loved being a military spouse, the last time they lived overseas was 12 years ago.

    he put on his wish list for posts, germany, italy and fort lewis washington.

    do any of you know of websites or message boards especially geared toward spouses for answering questions re housing/jobs/bene's........

    I have found a few websites via a google search, re some benefits, but you know how the military sugar coats things. what i need is honesty. pros and cons to being a military spouse. if anybody here has advice, or knows message boards or anything i would be so interested in conversing with you.

    thank you in advance.
    mel
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  2. 16 Comments

  3. by   jnette
    Hey there !

    It's my bedtime..(get up shortly after 0300 for work).. but just read this post and would like to try to help you out a little. I come from a military background and myself served in the AF many moons ago. I'm sure there are changes since then, but many things still apply. Can't write much now...need to get to bed, but will try to pm you tomorrow, ok? There are others on the BB who have more recent military experience as well.. I'm sure between all of us, you should be able to get some input ! Hold on, ok?
  4. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Hi Jnette, from a fellow AF family member/veteran!!! Where have you been stationed??? what did you do in the AF????? when did you get out???? so many questions.....anyhow.....

    Trauma------PM me if you like. I am an Air Force spouse and also an Air Force veteran of 10 years, myself. All told, I have lived AF life for 20 years now. I can answer any questions you want to ask and clear things up if you need help. Best of luck to you.

    PS: For the most part, i DO like AF life.......sure there are sacrifices, but the benefits also are there. It depends on how one looks at it.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Oct 9, '02
  5. by   NurzofFaith
    Hi Mel!

    I've been an Air Force wife for 12.5 years now. It is an adjustment but one I think wasn't hard to make! It did take me 2 bases and 2 colleges to get my college degree..the moving around thing was an issue

    You ask for websites...there are a couple, one is ivillage.com on it they have boards where many many military families post. You will find a lot of information and support there. Go to the ivillage site, click on the word boards at the top of the screen and then to the relationship channel at the side of the screen...scroll down until you find the military wives/families title. The other site is www.afcrossroads.com It has a lot of base information too.

    Military life is what you make of it just as civilian life, there are sacrifices but I think it has been a wonderful experience and wouldnt trade it for anything.

    Feel free to PM me or send an email if you need anything else.

    Best of luck to you and your hubby!
    ~Channa
  6. by   NannaNurse
    Hi.....I'm a former Army Officer wife of 22+ years. Currently a proud Navy wife. Former military myself. All I can say is that I really miss the 'military' way of life. You meet so many people, make so many friends....really close ones ( I'm still friends with a military couple I met 26 years ago!! We've gone from 'NO' kids to 'Grandkids'...)
    You will travel to beautiful places. *****But I must warn you.......
    You will also spend time without your spouse while they are 'out in the field'......out on manuvers/assignments, etc. Now, this can be a bad thing.........OR it can be a good thing too. Your experiences will be many and great....your spouse will be an officer and there are alot of clubs to be part of.....Officer's wives club...etc....enjoy it....but you must really think all of this through and be 'sure'.....Good luck!!
  7. by   PNST8R
    Dear Mel,
    I'm an army wife of four years. Army life has been pretty good to us so far, although it definitely has it's pros and cons.
    The worst part we've has to deal with so far is being separated. He's been deployed frequently (although I have had daily contact with him when he was gone, but it all depends on the nature of the mission). We got our second choice for where we wanted to get posted, but recently a lot of our friends have gotten choices MUCH lower on the list. As far as I know you cannot guarantee getting a certain post. I have heard that some enlisted soldiers can get it written in their contract, but officers cannot. So, there's no guarantee that he won't be stationed in the middle of nowhere. The bottom line is that the army will put you where they need you.
    I am not really involved with any of the wives stuff since we live further out and work all the time, but I think that you can be as involved as you want to be. I was kept well informed by the phone tree and meetings while he was deployed.
    The best part of army life so far is that we have become friends with so many wonderful people. Other than that, the money's not bad (and it's guaranteed), the benefits are pretty good, and the retirement is good. Some poeple don't like the health care, but I use it and have not had problems with it. Plus, I get paid a couple of dollars more to work non-benefit at my hospital. I also like the discounts - commissary, PX, etc. Plus, my husband is doing what he wants to do and I don't think he'll get the same job satisfaction anywhere else.
    I don't know if I have been any help to you, but I thought I'd try to respond. The decision to join the army is a heavy one when you consider what's going on in the world (I know a couple of units are already deploying to the gulf).
    I wish you and your husband luck in whatever you decide!
  8. by   sjoe
    Never mind. Updated below.
    Last edit by sjoe on Oct 11, '02
  9. by   live4today
    Hi Mel

    I am currently an Army wife.....been one for 12 yrs. this go round.

    In my first marriage, I was both an Army and Air Force wife as my first husband served a full term in each branch, then spent time in the Air Force Reserve following his two terms of military active duty service.

    My first two children were born in military hospitals.....so, I guess you can call them "military brats" like all the other military kids across the nation are called.

    The Army does care about their soldiers and their families.....perhaps not in the way we would want them too, but in their own government mentality.....they get the job done....one way or the other.

    I have enjoyed being a military spouse. I love to travel. Living out of a suitcase and moving every few years (or less) is old hat to me since I moved constantly as a child, and again when I worked as a traveling nurse. I think it will be a hard adjustment for me to stay in one place once my husband retires from the military.......IF we are still married to one another that is.

    There will be those times when your husband will be away from home for months, maybe even a year or more at a time......depending on what his MOS is (his job description/assignment) in the military.

    I worked military hospitals for the better part of my nursing career, so I'm use to working as a DAC employee at a GS level with many active and reserve duty nurses, doctors, and other ancillary staff. If you and your husband are going to be nurses...whether you and he both join the service or not.....you will find your chances of advancement as nurses and the benefits as being very lucrative for yourselves.

    If your husband goes to Ft. Lewis, WA.....let me know......I have two nephews there who could fill him in on things. One is Army and the other is Air Force.

    "PM" me if I can answer anymore questions for you regarding the military. I could have joined as a nurse myself.....actually, I almost did join the Army Reserves in 1990.....I stiil have my Army Nurse Corp purse size mirror to prove it......but, I let that mirror remind me that I am soooooooo glad I did NOT join. If you join, I wish you all the best. :kiss
  10. by   LPNtoBSNstudent
    Hi there! I'm a military wife too and I'm content with it. I love the commisary and PX. I don't mind short separations with my DH, because we seem to try harder to remain close, even though he is away. There is something to be said about that intense 'missing' that goes on.
    Obviously, I'm not thrilled with the idea of WAR, but my DH is in this for the long haul and this is his life, he loves it.

    But I have a question too.
    What happens if you get PCS'd to Germany (et al)? Can a spouse work at the post hospital as a nurse with a nursing license from the states? How does that work?

    I know it is a pain to apply for and change my nursing license from state to state while we are here. I already have changed from Missouri, to North Carolina and now Kansas (only been married 4 years!)

    But I was just wondering if I could even work (as a nurse) in Germany, for example? I am back in school now and we have 2 years stabilization so I can finish school, but what if right after that we get orders to go to Germany? I really hope I can work as a nurse.
    Thanks!
  11. by   live4today
    LPN......I will respond to your thread tomorrow. I have some advice for you regarding your concerns of working in Germany, and state to state, but I am barely holding me eyes open right now......forgive me.....be back tomorrow. Night! :kiss
  12. by   Mary Dover
    Military wife here, Air Force, for the past year. I love it. I now work for Tricare and my job brings me in close contact with Army and Air Force service members. I just have the utmost respect and appreciation for all military folks and there families.
    At the time my husband and I first met, he was in Utah. By the time we got married, he had orders to come to NC. Wouldn't you just know, that's where I've lived all my life. Oh well, he's still got a few years to go to retirement, so I haven't totally ruled out that I'll get to see some of the world.
  13. by   cindyln
    A former military wife here.Hubby retired from the army.I have always worked in a military hospital.You don't need a license for that particular state just one from one of the 50 states.I do know that the army has good doctors and hospitals. The pay is better than in civilians hospitals also and there are no low census days.
    LPNtoBSN~I am also in kansas.:roll
  14. by   live4today
    originally posted by lpntobsnstudent
    .................................................. . have a question too.

    what happens if you get pcs'd to germany (et al)? can a spouse work at the post hospital as a nurse with a nursing license from the states? how does that work?

    .......i was just wondering if i could even work (as a nurse) in germany, for example?..........................
    thanks!
    hi lpn ......forgive me for the late hour of responding to your post......i almost forgot about it to be honest, but you'll forgive me i'm sure since my brain functions when it feels like it......not always when i need it to.

    okay.....in answer to your questions above:

    as cindyln has already stated: all you need is one active nursing license from any of the united states to work in any military hospital regardless of where you work.

    as for being able to work overseas.....whether it is germany or any other overseas assignment you may accompany your spouse on.....yes.....it is possible to work overseas on your united states nursing license in overseas military hospitals.

    you can also work in germany's civilian hospitals as long as you meet their criteria and speak their language.

    nighty night!!! :kiss

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