More on “Cheating Military Spouses”
Of all the posts I have written, I am always amazed at which one repeatedly draws viewers or a comment. Of course any pictures of our troops in Iraq or Afghanistan always draws viewers and keeps that post at the top of the “most viewed list.” The next biggest draw on my blog is posts about the Stryker Brigade Combat Teams and the famed Nighthawks. Several of these units are among the most decorated in the war!
Both these units are high profile by the very nature of their design and function or purpose in combat. Both go into very deadly situations, and, with their specialized training and equipment, perform combat, support, rescue and whatever other tasks requiring their specific abilities. These units are an even closer knit group than the many other combat units due to their combat roles. [no offense intended to other units] The blogs these troops write cover harrowing tales of the realities of war. We cheer their success. We mourn with them their losses. We laugh with them at their very human idiosyncrasies which remind us that like us they are all so very human.
However, surprisingly, the one post that continues to move up and down from number one in the top ten posts is one I wrote based on something that came up on a forum I frequent. The post is called, “Cheating Military spouses??.” Periodically a wife or girlfriend would write a post about their devastation over finding out that their husband or boyfriend had cheated while deployed. Another frequent post is by a young woman afraid her boyfriend or husband would cheat during deployment. Surprisingly, there were also frequent posts from deployed soldiers whose spouse or significant other cheated on them. The most heartbreaking incidences were soldiers deployed whose spouse divorced them and took the kids or their ex-spouse took their kids!
I decided to do a Google search on soldiers cheating while deployed. I found an interesting article by Richard Engel, NBC News Correspondent (09:07 am ET, 10/27/06). I was very surprised to find that compared to Vietnam, there appeared to be less cheating by the deployed troops today. Most of the cheating was/is being done by the significant other back home! I was also surprised to find that according to this article, how many of our deployed troops were afraid their significant other would cheat on them. “The troops worry about ‘Jody’.” Jody is the name our troops use for the “guy or gal” back home sleeping with their wife or girlfriend; husband or boyfriend. The troops even have a song they sing to their cadence as they are drilling or doing PT beginning back in bootcamp:
Song for ‘Jody’
The troops told me about cadences, the “work songs” some sing while doing PT (physical training), dedicated to “Jody.”
“Ain’t no use in going back
Jody’s got your Cadillac
Ain’t no use in calling home
Jody’s got your girl and gone
Ain’t no use in feeling blue
Jody’s got your sister too
Took away my faded jeans
Now I’m wearing Army greens”
Below the article, the comments from deployed troops and those loved ones at home are very revealing. The author of this article determined it would be difficult to conduct an accurate poll. But, the veterans and present military personnel had some interesting views on the percentage of cheating significant others. It seems their consensus put the figure around 85% as an average. Now this did surprise me.
I was curious about the differences in attitude among the Veterans from Vietnam and our present troops forces with regard to cheating while deployed. This is purely conjecture on my part. I suspect that a lot has to do with a drafted Military versus a volunteer Military. I would expect the cheating to be higher during a draft. The percentage of college graduates or professional men and women is higher in the reserve components and the active components today. The troops today are serving by choice. Most are career soldiers.
I don’t mean to denigrate those who served during Vietnam. There is no question over their bravery and service to their country. But, much as I remember that time, and my discussions with my fellow Marines, free choice versus the draft does impact soldiers attitude and moral. None of us wants to be forced to die; especially when we see the political football game being played with our lives!
Take a moment, if you will, and read Engel’s post. Then read the comments submitted by both sides of this issue. Maybe some of what you read will help you if you find yourself in the situation where your significant other has cheated. There are many who wrote about just this. But, my hope is the other comments will be the ones that will offer you the most support.
[edited to add the more code -dd]