11 Ways Military and Law Enforcement Spouse Life is Similar

Military spouses and law enforcement spouses have a lot in common!

Today, we celebrate National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day with our brothers and sisters who support their spouse in uniform. We know how much you sacrifice, too. Here are some of the things we share:

  1. A love/hate relationship with the uniform. We love how they look in it but hate the work/money that goes into maintaining it. Even when you see them wear it everyday, the moment your spouse puts on the uniform, your heart fills up with pride. Oh, and admit it, they look pretty hot in it too.
  2. It’s a family business. Joining the military and being in law enforcement requires that the whole family team be onboard with the lifestyle each requires. That also means your kids have a built-in “cool parent” for career day. And, when you tell people what your spouse does, they often will thank you for the sacrifice they know it takes for them (and you!) to serve our country and communities.
  3. We don’t know what to expect when our spouse leaves for work. It can be a rollercoaster of emotions when they walk out the door. From the simple “will they be home for dinner?” to “what harm will they have to face?” There are a lot of unknowns that often worry us when we don’t hear from them or we see something on the news.
  4. We’re proud of what our spouse does for a living. When people publicly “complain” about their profession, we’re fast to show our support for them. For us, the talking heads on television are talking about our loved ones, and a news bite is more than a catchy one liner soon to be forgotten.
  5. Solo-parenting is often the norm. From birthdays to kid’s ball games, time spent on the job often has to come first and that can be hard to swallow. The kids try to be understanding (and so do we), and we know it is hard on our spouse to be away, also. Staying connected isn’t an easy thing but we probably do a lot of the same things to share special days when we can’t be together. Facetime, anyone?
  6. Vacation? Better get insurance. Plans get cancelled for both of us. No one plans for a natural disaster or an unexpected all-hands-on-deck hostage situation. And when a call comes telling them they are needed, they need to go – so bye bye trip to Disney!
  7. What did he say? Our spouses speak a different language of acronyms and sayings, and it’s hard to remember all of them! But we’ll catch our kids saying “Roger” and “0 dark thirty” and starting their ABC’s with “Adam, Boy, Charles” which makes us smile.
  8. The fallout is real. A tough job like theirs means traumatic experiences. Our families have to deal with PTSD from traumatic scenarios, and sometimes it’s hard to seek help (or admit there is a problem). As a spouse, we are first-responders to these issues, and it can take a toll on the whole family.
  9. BFFs. Finding another spouse who understands your life is like gold. That’s why we form tribes! We can talk about all of this stuff and understand the challenges we each face. We love finding another military or law enforcement spouse who understands the life and can relate to what we’re feeling without having to explain all the background details.
  10. Standing tall. We feel a lump in our throat when the National Anthem plays because we know the cost behind keeping this nation great. Other people will talk about selfless service, but your family truly knows what it means and lives it everyday. While there are big highs and lows to the lives we lead, our families take pride in knowing that the profession our spouse has chosen is one that aims to put others in front of them.
  11. We laugh at all of the bad stock photography. Plus, messed up uniforms on television and inaccurate sayings in movies in police dramas and military movies.
  12. Bonus! We take cute pictures of our kids with “bling” from our spouse’s job.
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