Deployment leaves a lot of unknowns on the table. You don’t know that you’ll make it back home, so you need to do everything in your power to prepare your family for success. Even if you do make it back home, you might be away for weeks or months leaving your family members to fill in the gaps.
Emotional preparations are a must, and this means being able to talk to your spouse or loved ones about a potential deployment.
Talk to your loved ones well in advance and let them know that you love them. Explain how children can help mom and dad. Don’t leave anything unsaid.
A few tips that can help are:
- Learn as much as you can about the deployment.
- Discuss how you’ll communicate with your spouse.
- Plan activities for your spouse or loved one, or make it known that they should go out and have fun during deployment.
- Spend time together before you leave and do something special.
Once you’ve emotionally prepared your family, it’s time to move on to preparing your home for deployment.
Preparing Your Home for Deployment
Home will change in your absence, and this means doing a lot of preparation to ensure that your not being there doesn’t impact your family too much. There are a lot of little things that go into preparing your home:
- Repairs. If you need repairs made to your home that you’ve been putting off, it’s time to do them now. You can do them now or call in a professional. “If a water leak is not detected quickly enough, it has the potential to cause thousands of dollars’ worth of damage,” claims Pipe Surgeons. Don’t put this unneeded financial burden on your family.
- Child care. If your absence means that child care arrangements need to be made, contact any services through the military that can help. Review any child care plans you may already have in place.
- Updates. Make sure to update any financial documents and details you have. Legal documents and wills also need to be updated. Contact numbers need to be jotted down for military officials, doctors, care providers and anyone else your loved ones may need to contact.
- Finances. It’s important to discuss how finances ought to be handled during deployment. Many items may be able to go into deferment, too.
When it comes to children, this can be a very trying time. It’s confusing to see mommy or daddy leave on deployment with the chance that they’ll never come back. Spend some time with your children before deploying and explain as much to them as you can so long as it’s age appropriate.
Write letters, make calls or send emails to your loved ones while you’re away.
Make it a point for children to know that this is a temporary situation and that they’ll be able to maintain contact with you while you’re gone. It’s important to keep the lines of communication open so that your children know that you’re still there for them emotionally.