Experienced Military Spouses: Know-It-Alls or Respected Legacies?

Some may call us Know-It-Alls. Perhaps, even an “Old G.” Dependapotomus? Not a word. Now, that’s a funny one!

I am currently on my 19th year of being ‘married to the military.’ So I like to say I’m experienced. I have earned my stripes, and I am so proud of the woman I am today. I have survived it all.

I won’t bore you with how many times I’ve moved, or how many deployments I have made it through. I will just say my military experience was not an easy one, with lots of ups and downs. Can you relate?

Social media has exploded with countless video blogs, military forums, and a ton of information for all your military life needs. Many spouses come together to give each other advice, but I have noticed some serious backlash against experienced spouses. There are viral video blogs out there that make fun of the “experienced military spouses” calling us “Know-It-Alls.”

In my opinion, we are a legacy!

It’s been 19 years…I have been through a lot, and I have learned a lot! I do advise many other military spouses whenever I can, and I told myself that I would always offer help and advice to those who needed it. Social media has made that easy for me. When I see a post from someone reaching out for answers, I find myself sharing my knowledge and experience with them. Why do some people have a problem with that? I’ve learned that advice from someone that has been through what you’re currently going through is priceless!

I respect those who have come before me and I love to seek out their stories and knowledge on things I don’t know. I try to learn more about military life every day, whether it’s about health care changes, child care, jobs, volunteer opportunities, education, and (for my family) transitioning into civilian life. Transitioning out of the military world is going to be hard for me, but I am thankful to have met many spouses who have gone through it already, and I can’t wait to ask for their guidance. Transitioning is very much like being a new spouse–so many questions to ask. Where and whom to go to for the answers?

The National Military Family Association has been a great resource for me. You can find information on leaving the military, and much more. And I am always amazed at what I find out! For example, NMFA was started in 1969 by military spouses who just wanted to help each other out. When you think about it, most successful organizations and websites are those that gather information and experience from those very women and men you call ‘Know-It-Alls.’

We have built the path for your journey. And that’s why I volunteer with National Military Family Association. It’s my mission to help my fellow military spouses. Being called a Know-It-All just doesn’t sit well with me. I don’t know it all, but I do know a lot about the military life.

Next time you’re on social media, at the commissary, or at an event, and you talk to an older military spouse, be nice and thank them. We know the life, which means we know each other. And we want to know you, too.

Do you have an experienced military spouse mentor in your life? How have they impacted your military journey?

Posted by LaTanya Roldan, military spouse and National Military Family Association Volunteer, Mountain Home AFB

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