What Not to Say to a Military Spouse on Promotion Day

IMG_4008Thoughts that were going through my head about my husband’s promotion: What should I wear? Something casual but hip. Should I take the kids? I really don’t want to get the kids out of school. I don’t know anyone in his new platoon. I am going to be the only wife there. This is not my first rodeo. Ok, breathe. I’m fine. Oh wait, I’m supposed to be thinking about him. It’s his rodeo not mine.

I am super proud of my husband for his promotion because it might be his last. This promotion was a big one for my husband and he has worked really hard to get to where he is in his military career. I have been by his side for 15+ years and have gone through a lot of deployments, countless duty stations, trainings, courses, B Billets, etc.

A couple of Marines said congratulations to me when I was standing by my husband. It was awkward because they probably didn’t know what to say, especially when he outranks 95% of the platoon. What makes it more awkward is that I am a veteran and know that you are not given any rank in the military you have to earn it. I did not rate the rank that my husband earned.

I have supported him throughout his career and in no way think I deserve any congratulations from anybody. Maybe just a “Thanks for sticking by me through all of this,” from my husband.

What do you say to a military spouse?

Maybe a simple, Thank you for coming, would suffice. Thank you for standing by your husband. Thank you for taking care of the house while he was in Iraq. Thank you for attending all the family parties by yourself while he was in Afghanistan. Thank you for attending the school functions while he was working late. Thank you for holding down the fort.

Just, a thank you.

25 thoughts on “What Not to Say to a Military Spouse on Promotion Day

  1. This is so beautiful, Suzy. Thank you for sharing. Definitely, Thank you for standing by your husband & taking care of the house and the family while your husband was in Afghanistan. Thank you for your strength. Thank you to both of you for all that you do and all that you sacrifice. Sending love to you and family, always, Lisa

  2. The congratulations are offered in recognition of the supporting roll the Active Duty Member’s Family plays in helping them to reach and maintain the level of dedication and professionalism required for promotion in the armed forces.

  3. The congratulations are offered in recognition of the supporting roll the Active Duty Member’s Family plays in helping them to reach and maintain the level of dedication and professionalism required for promotion in the armed forces.

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