For some military couples, their service makes their relationship stronger. They know that they are doing something they believe in and serving their country. That bond helps keep them close, and they enjoy it.
However, for many couples, the job may push them apart. Many experts have found that military couples have high divorce rates, suggesting that there is something about this profession that ends marriages. To understand why and how this happens, let’s take a look at some key facts.
Military work is stressful
Stressful occupations often lead to divorce. This extends beyond the military, also encompassing people who are doctors, nurses, police officers and the like. Anyone who experiences high stress at work could get divorced when that stress impacts their personal life. Soldiers lead stressful lives, and they may see the way that changes their marriages over time.
They spend time away from the family
One of the biggest reasons for divorce is separation. You see this in civilian occupations where workers have to take on night shifts or work long hours — like doctors working 24-hour shifts and working on holidays. When couples don’t spend enough time together, they drift apart. This can happen to military couples when they spend months on deployments and work long hours even at home.
Rank does not matter
Some may assume that officers have it easier, with their higher pay and other advantages. However, studies have found that rank does not really impact the divorce rate. Neither does a person’s specific role in the military. Just taking this as a career increases the divorce odds, no matter what someone does or how high or low they rank.
Relocations are hard on the family
Many times, military families have to move a lot. They move even during basic training. They move again when the service member gets deployed to a base overseas. They move across the United States, from base to base, as the job demands. This makes sense from a military perspective, but it’s very hard when the family cannot ever put down roots. Eventually, it may erode the marriage as the spouse looks for a different lifestyle.
Readjustment is hard
It’s not always easy for those who have seen combat to readjust to normal life. When they return, they may have PTSD and may seem very different than when they left. Unfortunately, this change can also lead to a lot of divorce cases.
If you are thinking about getting divorced because you or your spouse — or both — is in the military, make sure you fully understand the legal process in Washington and all of the rights that you have.