Then it happens...that moment when you realize that you don't know what's going on. You then seriously consider what the hell you just walked into and more importantly, are you the crazy one because you are not like the others?! Are they just crazy train? Coo coo for coco puffs? A fry short of a happy meal? You get my point.
That was part of my experience when I arrived in Germany. It's something I might have a hard time explaining in a polite and an appropriate manner. It's a phenomenon that I've never experienced in my life and certainly wasn't prepared for it when I started my military life. Here's the deal, there really ISN'T a way to prepare for this. I think my mom tried to warn me...and I do listen to her but realistically I know that I thought, "yea, yea Mom, it's not like that anymore..."
I. WAS. WRONG. Mom was right. That's correct, she was right-just as she has been many times in my life! Shortly before we were married, we met with my parents downtown Milwaukee to look at venues for the wedding. As we sat outside, drinking a beer at an awesome local joint called The Wicked Hop, I could tell something was up. Eventually we got it out of them that they were worried about how I would handle the change in lifestyle I was about to experience. I blew them off only because I felt that they were being too old school regarding what it's like in the military these days. My Dad is a retired Navy pilot and the two of them have lived all over the place. So they have experienced quite a bit of what we're going through. Just in different decades. So I didn't give any of it much thought, assured them that I would be fine and I know the difference of being respectful to my husbands' boss and knowing when to let loose.
As it happens, not a whole lot has actually changed!! The wives are cah-razy here. Like legit crazy. I've never seen women act this way and am genuinely shocked at how they treat other people, including their husbands at times. There are so many examples I could throw at you, so many. But I do realize I have to fraternize with some of them at times so it might be best to use some discretion. I'll give you some examples though....
1. The wife who wears her husbands rank on their sleeve. She's a gem. Let's see, so your husband is a high ranking officer here, that doesn't mean that you are. Yes, there is some respect that is deserved towards that wife (but shouldn't everyone deserve some respect in general?) To abuse that and hold it above other wives is ridiculous. It's a very entitled feel this wife gives off, they want the respect of everyone and "ew, you're husband is of a lower rank, you can't come to the party." That....is so ridiculous, I can't even. Like I literally need a time out. I do not care what rank your husband is, we're all people and we're all on the same damn team. So if you're a good person, and we have things in common-we're probably gonna hang out. I will not abide by the ranking game of "oh your husband is an *E-5, I see...." I'm not kidding, it's real. People aren't invited to gatherings and bigger than that, if (for example) a Commanders wife or even the Commander is seen hanging out with an Enlisted soldier, it can reflect poorly on the Commander, his spouse and results of any reviews! So....you have to play the game. You hang out with your "kind." The soldiers that are the same rank as your husband or darn near close to it. I struggle with this. I mean as a spouse here in Germany, you struggle just to find similar people to have conversations with that you don't make you want pull your hair out. (For real.)
2. The wife that feels she knows more about the military than her husband does. This happens as well. They'll be the first to interrupt your conversation to makes sure you know the correct answer and additional facts. Oh, and that she's right. Even when she's not. The best is when they correct their husbands in FRONT of the higher ranking officers. That's a quality move right there. Sweet Jesus. Have enough respect for your husband to choke on it for just a little while and not emasculate them in front of the entire company! Is it bad that when this happens I internally giggle and yet still groan with disgust when this happens?!)
3. The wife that gives the unsolicited advice. Ugh. I'm independent, where I like to find things on my own. I like the adventure of figuring most things out, however, I will be the first person to ask for help if/when I need it. There's nothing more annoying than the wife who is just all OVER you the minute you get here and proceeds to barf every effing piece of info on you. I mean, I get it. They're trying to be nice, right?! I should probably not be so bitchy. Whatever, if I didn't ask for it, I don't really want the info. That is all.
4. The "you don't have children" wife. I am going to precursor this one----I love kids, I think they can be just awesome little beings. With that said....I don't honestly mean to offend anyone who has has children while married, out of wedlock or any other way. So if this offends you well...you don't know me that well then.
Oh yes, there is what I like to call reverse discrimination over here. My husband and I do not have any kids at this point. Would we like to, yes. We plan on making that happen. Is that any of your business you judgy wife/mom with 4 kids screaming and crawling all over you? Nope, sure isn't. Oh, I'm sorry I didn't just go pump out random kids at some point in my high school or adult life. I chose to wait or use protection so that when I was ready and with the person that would help make perfect tall, blonde, pilot babies....sue me. And shut it. Take your stare elsewhere, I'm sure your husband is missing it right about now.
5. Dependapotomus. This wife is an epic hater of the military and well known throughout the post. These wives are typically heavy set, mostly because they are lazy, they hate life, and the military. They will be the first person to use up their husbands paycheck on ridiculous, non-useful stuff and then bitch because they spent it all. They complain about how where they live sucks, how it's not America, how they can't speak the language nor understand it. They never get involved in their *FRG or any aspect of the community around them. They're super great if they try to pull rank too. Watch out for these ones, they're beastly!
6. The Gym-rat wife. I'm not totally hating on this wife in certain areas. I mean, I use the gym and I can appreciate the wife who likes to take care of herself. However, the wife I'm specifically talking about is the one who drops her kid off at childcare for the day then spends the entire day at the gym. Judging, gossiping and generally wasting time as their kids are being looked after by some underpaid government employee. They'll be the first one to know who's cheating on who and can also be the first one to start such rumors. Be careful. #lululemonallovertheplace #spandex
So, there ya have it. It's honest, brutal and unfortunately so real. There are a few normal ones around and when you find 'em, hold onto them like crazy glue....wait. Let's drop the crazy. Just glue. Regular, old glue. Yup.
This one is just too funny. Cuz it's so true. :)
*E-5: Sergeant, a non-commissioned officer)
*FRG: Family Readiness Group. They help communicate information to the spouses from the Company Command.