Handbook for a New Military Spouse: Excerpts

Excerpts from the handbook currently distributed at family support centers at Fort Campbell Army base

Cover of Handbook for a New Military Spouse

This is a sidebar to the article "The military's mental health crisis." 


When Spouses are invited to a Dining In, it becomes a Dining Out. This gives the Spouses an opportunity to see all the "pomp and circumstance" that goes with the tradition. The Spouses will enjoy the opportunity to dress in their most formal dinner gowns or tuxedoes and spend a fun evening with their Soldiers.


Thank you notes for hospitality and courtesies received are a must and a sign of gracious manners. If your host/hostess is a close friend, a phone call is sufficient. A handwritten thank you is appropriate for any occasion, whether it be a meal, a gift received or simply a kind deed. When writing a note to a couple, address it to the Spouse and send it within 5 days.


At all social functions, all invited guests should try to speak to the guest(s) of honor and be sure to bid goodbye to the hostess and/or host. Always be punctual for social functions, but do not come early.

You may come early to meetings, however, so that you can socialize before the meeting that the meeting can start on time.

As a ball or dining out, the ladies stand for the posting and retiring of the colors. They also stand and drink for all toasts except the toast "to the ladies." If you do not drink alcoholic beverages, you may lift your glass for the toasts as a token. Ladies may stand for a standing ovation for a speaker.

Although the Military has a defined rank structure, Spouses have no rank.


Super Spouses: We learn when our Soldiers are gone that we can make it. We can manage the house, the money, the car, the children, a job, friends, Family back home. Feels like power. Feels good. We are super Spouses. No matter the world throws at us, we can be OK. Have fun. Do not get so wrapped in making plans that you cannot stop and smell the roses. Let it go, be silly. Just being together is enough. Enjoy, Chill out, Smile, Laugh, Love is a gift — give it, share it.

Read "The military's mental health crisis." 

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