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  5. Navy Wives, Hardest Job in the Service!!!!!

Navy Wives, Hardest Job in the Service!!!!! Rss

I'm sending out a plea to other Mum's with partners in the Services, I need some advice! I'm not handling my husband being away so much with a baby. It is so much harder than I thought it would be..... Is there anyone out there in the same position who can help me? PLEASE?!?!?!?!
hi how are you.

My husband is in the army. He was posted to Canberra and i remined here as it was the best thing for us. e have two kids and one on the way.

i probably can't help you much because i am very independant and even when my husband was here i did most things with the kids.

I was also a single mum for a while so i am used to doing it on my own.

can i ask do you work at all and how often is your partner away.

i think it you find a balance with bubs and yourself you can manage it depends i guess.

Probably haven't helped at all sorry

Adam(07/09/01), Holly(08/07/04) & Matthew(230605)

I have heard that a lot of service wives stay in the one place and have their husbands come to them when they can. I don't know if that is for us, but it is something I am going to discuss with my husband.

I don't work because by the time I paid for childcare I would have nothing left. I also don't really need to as the Navy pays pretty well for my husbands rank.
The ship's routine at the moment is out for three weeks, in for two days for the past six months, then they are leaving for Southeast Asia in four weeks, being gone for almost five months. Then they are away for ten days and in for two days for the remainder of the year. I am hoping that we are actually moving to Canberra around August to a shore posting, which means he will be home all the time.
I don't have any friends here that I know well enough to leave Char with, so I find things hard like going to the Dr, hairdresser or Physio.
So in a nutshell, I'm not too sure where the balance could be?
Well, that is my whinge........... thanks for replying to me.
Hi Katey

I know what you mean! My husband sailed today - thankfully only for 4 weeks. But his next trip will be a big one and he was gone for 3 months last year when our son was just 3 months old. I don't have any family here so I am on duty 24 hours a day.

I don't know about you but sometimes I feel very alone in this situation especially when bubs reaches a milestone and I am the only one to jump up and down with glee. That said I have hours and hours of video tape of bubs just playing and going about normal baby business that my husband has to watch when he is home.

I am not much of a 'joiner' so I never felt comfortable at the Playgroups or coffee mornings that the Defence Community Organisation run but there are girls at work who found it really good and some of them even got a babysitting group organised. Have you been to any of these?

I found that I needed to plan what I call a 'mental health day' once a month. I would organise occassional care for Tom and then go home to clean, sleep, get my hair done or whatever I wanted to do. It made all the difference to me. I have returned to work full time this year and intend to do the same thing while hubby is away.

You are right about going to appointments and I have never worked out a reliable method except to go with the flow as it happens. Not sure where you are located but if you are in Sydney there is a magazine called Sydney Child or something like that - anyway it advertised a beauty salon that offered babysitting while Mum got her hair done.

I joined a gym that offered free childcare while you worked out which also gave me some time on my own and as I was only a couple of metres away from bubs I never felt guilty about leaving him. As silly as I sounds I would also stand in the shower for ages after a work out as my little one would always wake up whenever I jumped into the shower at home!

Going ' member with dependants separated' that is you stay in one location while your husband moves to another is an option if it means that you have good support networks where you are but it means that he might find it hard to come home when the ship is alongside for only a couple of days. The Defence Community Organisation can help with information if you want to find out more.

I don't get to log on too often - mostly when I am waiting for that all important 'email dump' from the ship. Will look to see how you are going.

good luck


I hate the way the e-mail dumps are so sporadic and spaced out! I am in WA and the DCO support over here is useless. Not many guys bring their families over to the west as it is so isolated.
I don't mesh well with large groups of people either, especially because I am only 23 and the wife of an officer. The only people in my age group here are sailors wives and you know the rules about mixed association. It stinks, but the division is really strong here. I get looked down upon by the other officers wives because I am so young and the sailors wives won't talk to me because they assume I am a snob. I had trouble with one woman whose husband is a fellow SBLT when we first moved here. There were no B2 houses left so we got a C class house instead and it caused so many problems!

I have decided to look into occasional care, one day a month or so. That way I can at least go to my physio appointments. I'm 5ft2in and weighed 53kgs before I fell pregnant and by the time I delivered I was 84kgs!! I did a lot of damage to my back so physio is a priority. I am down to 61kgs now though!

Where are you if you don't mind me asking? And what ship is your hubby on? You can e-mail me at if you prefer.
Thanks for your reply too.
With any luck you'll move into victoria so we can catch up, and you'll have a friend down here!

Di, vic, Jai born 17/8/04

I think you are doing so well. My hubby is in the RAAF and I am finding it hard with him away alot - however he isnt away as long as NAVY husbands are.... He was just away for a month in Indonesia and often is away with only a couple of hours notice. I find that really hard as we can never plan to do anything as it always gets ruined. The Indonesia trip was very short notice (obviously), and right on the holidays. All my family is in NZ and I have no support either.
I havent been able to figure out appointments for me as I dont have any one to leave my bub with, so just basically dont get any ME time when my hubby is away. I am not into the defence 'scene' either and also are not too keen on big groups and stuff. DCO had a bbq a few weeks ago for spouses of deployed members and when i talked to the lady on the phone I was all keen and it sounded good, but when it came down to it, well, I'd rather stay home than go hang out with the other wives who seem to really have it all together (on the surface anyway) when sometimes i just feel like going home to my MUM!!!
Well, there is my moan!!! If you want an email friend let me know smile

Suz, NSW

I know what you mean about the picnics and things. Sometimes you want to have the support of other service wives and at other times you just want to forget about the services and try and have a normal life. It is hard when you move so much as you don't want to make new friends only to have to leave them behind.
It really is such a hard life and I hate it when people say things like "you knew it would be hard being with someone in the Navy (or Army or RAAF)". Yes I knew it would be hard, but that doesn't take away my right to be unhappy about it.
I was alone the whole time I was pregnant with my daughter, as once we were posted to WA (to a ship in re-fit so there was not supposed to be any going to sea time for at least ten months) my husbands boss decided to send him on course after course, so here I am, six months pregnant in a new area with no friends, totally isolated and no support from hubby who is always away. I was furious.
Sometimes I just wish that they would take into consideration the family of the member. My husband has given everything he has to his job at the expense of his family and we get nothing. I was talking to a woman yesterday who couldn't beleive that we are not even entitled to medical benefits. It's like they say "If we wanted you to have a wife and family, we would have issued you with one".
So there is my whinge again. You ladies must think I am a total pain in the butt as all I do in complain. I just want the recognition once in awhile that I am doing a good job despite my circumstances! Thanks again for listening.
Hi Katey,
I think you sound like such a remarkable lady.
I was getting tears in my eyes just reading your posts.
(and here I am thinking what will I do when my husband goes OS for work for 10 days), this is nothing compared to you.

I think alot of people just don't realize what it is like for those people that are stuck at home with all of the day to day family things to worry about.
You need a medal yourself for doing it alone.
Its not always the physical support of having someone to help out ,but the emotional support you need as well, just to have that person there to say, WOW youve done a good job today.

So keep up the good work, however hard it is. smile

Sydney,twin boys 22/10/04+girl 26/03/02

Hi Girls,

My husband too is in the defence force (RAAF). I so know what you mean. It seems all too hard to attend things and is so much easier to stay at home and do things with bub.

I feel for you navy wives as it would be so hard when your hubbies are away for such a long time even some units in the army are the same.

I used to be really bad as we were living in Darwin and all our families were back in QLD. Darwin is sooooo far away and isolated that I felt so alone as I didn't have my family there as I am so close to mine. I was lucky as my hubby didn't really go away that much but was constantly on shift work. He went away when Jordan was 3 months old and I thought I wouldn't be able to cope but I did. I tend to be pretty independent when I have to.

Yeah you do know what you are up for when you marry into the defence force but it is hard when it happens cause for some reason you think it won't be the same for your hubby smile

We now have been posted to QLD and it is soooo much better as we are back where family are again. It is great having the support right there and will miss it once again when we get posted again. I am glad as it will be a chance for our families to see Jordan grow up and hopefully when we have bub 2 we will be here still and they watch that one too.

My hubby is going away for a month again and this time I am able to go and see my parents to relieve some time that he is away.

I reckon we should all give ourselves a pat on the back as we are truely incredible women to be able to raise a family while coping with postings and hubbies away!
Congratulations on being back in Qld!!!! I wish I could move back sometime soon! The only base in Qld is Cairns and they don't have much of a need for Weapons Electrical Engineers! Only patrol boats really.
I am going back to Qld for a few months soon as hubby is leaving for South East Asia soon and I have to have an operation. Mum and Dad are going to look after Char and myself while Daddy is gone. Thank goodness.
I had an argument with one of the mothers in my mothers group the other day.
She basically attacked me for having children to someone in the forces. It was so rude. Something about it not being fair to the children as they will never have a stable life or close friends as you move all the time. I told her to keep her narrow minded opinion to herself and the child health nurse running the group asked her to leave. People like that don't even bother me anymore. I have heard all manner of opinions on why it is unfair on children to have parents who go away for such extended periods of time and I think to myself "does this mean that no-one in the services are allowed to have children?". The world would be a pretty empty place!
Thank you to all who have replied to this post. Keep them coming, it is wonderful to know that I am not alone, even though I am technically!! Hee Hee. smile
Ohhhhh I cannot believe that women done that! What a cow! I really cannot fathom that somebody said that to you. She has no idea about life in general and yes she is extremely narrow minded. Good on the nurse for coming over and telling her to go.

Kids do have a stable life as parents go out of their way to make sure that they cope and there are defence resources available too. They are lucky to see alot of Australia and overseas because of their parents job. Not many kids get that and some don't even get out of their town!

You stick to your guns girl and best of luck with your op. Hope all goes well. Enjoy your parents pampering!

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