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5 Tips For Helping Your Kids Handle Your Spouse Being Deployed

1st Jul 2019

Having kids with someone who is in the military can be a difficult adjustment.  Not only is it tough for you to deal with their absence but also for your children that you have together.  

When your spouse is deployed, it’s normal for your kids to worry about them getting hurt while on military duty or feeling like their absence is their own fault.  However, you can help them understand their parent’s deployment better by knowing the right tips to help them cope.   Here are some of the best ways to help your child handle the separation from your deployed spouse.

Explain To Them What’s Happening In An Age Appropriate Way

Depending on how old your child is, they may not be able to understand why their parent is gone.  Try to explain them in the most age-appropriate way that they have gone away for purposes of work. Explain what the military is and why they will be going away occasionally.  Explain how it’s just like other parents works only theirs is a little different. 

You can be as honest as possible about what they do in a way that they can understand.  Answer any questions they have about the military and help them understand the bigger picture as much as possible. 

Talk About The Other Parent Regularly

For younger children especially, it’s helpful to keep talking about the other parent regularly.  Talk about what their mom or dad may be doing and what part of their daily routine they may currently be in.  Help them to picture it. Try to make sure that they don’t forget that they still love them very much even though they may not be physically present. 

Take Advantage of Technology

The nice thing about being deployed in 2019 is parents and children can take advantage of technology like video chat. Try to arrange a video chat as much as possible.  In the event that your spouse isn’t able to video chat, arrange a few pre-recordings of them saying hello to show to your child.

You may find that playing these videos every day will help them feel closer to the other person and not abandoned.

Maintain a Stable Routine

When a child’s regular routine is interrupted by having an absent parent, it’s important to try to keep things as stable as possible.  Try to maintain a regular bedtime, keep up with the same activities, and give them a sense of security with the schedule. 

Encourage Them To Talk About Their Feelings 

Sometimes children may not know how to express how they’re feeling. Try to encourage them to talk about their feelings regularly.  By encouraging them to talk about their feelings, you’ll be giving them the tools to talk about what’s on their mind.

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