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Discuss 5 months between tours?! in Partners - Wives, Girlfriends, Boyfriends, Husbands on Rear Party; Have just spoken to my partner in the sandpit. He's due home end of October, and we've just had word of new posting in February. The new place have been warned off for Herrick 18, ...
  
  1. #1
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    5 months between tours?!

    Have just spoken to my partner in the sandpit.
    He's due home end of October, and we've just had word of new posting in February.

    The new place have been warned off for Herrick 18, so next spring. Obviously this is outside Harmony guidelines and he can't be forced to go, but he says he may be offered a role on that tour. We both value his career (and I won't lie, tour bonuses can't be sniffed at) but I'm not sure how I'll feel if he goes. It's a major thing to be away for 7 months, home for 5 then away for another 7, especially at our age when we're thinking about children.

    Does anyone know how likely it is that he'll be offered Herrick 18? I know if I say I don't want him to go then he wouldn't, but I'd never tell him what to do especially I it'd be good for his career. He is being promoted at this new post and so I don't know what will happen.

    I am coping well with this tour, but with the knowledge he'll be home for at least a year or so, but this news is making it harder, and a 30 min satellite phone call doesn't make it easy to talk about it!

    Has anyone experienced this or have any advice? If he goes I'll just man up and do it, but the thought is upsetting me.

    Xx

  2. #2
    Senior Member Mrs_M's Avatar
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    You sound pretty much like me. Gutted at the thought of it, but wouldn't tell him cos he wouldn't go.
    Personally I'd hate it. My hubby is doing Herrick 18 next Spring and there is talk of it being a 9 month tour as its nearing the troops pulling out completely. I've joked and told him I'm sending the kids out if he's there more than 7!
    If its good for his career and you think you'd cope then yup man up as they say. Xx

  3. #3
    Moderator Gonzo's Avatar
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    Agree with Mrs M, and I have a surly 11 yr old and a tasmanian devil for a 2 yr old.
    Carpe Diem


    "Wit is educated insolence."

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    Well if Herrick 18 is a 9 month tour then I'm going to seriously struggle! But hey ho. Best get thinking about original things to put in welfare parcels then! The lady in the post office is going to be sick of the sight of me!

    No point worrying about it until it happens, and there's always r&r for conceiving on
    combat-barbie and poppyrose like this.

  5. #5
    Senior Member bootifull's Avatar
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    Don't plan anything its not worth the time or energy!
    bodger, spanner, Gonzo and 2 others like this.
    Mimi: "I'm a fat f*ck. I'm a f*cking fat f*cker".

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    My OH is going out on herrick 18 too so there will be a few of us going through it together.
    Lilly311 likes this.

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    I agree, I generally just take it as it comes but if we're to spend 16 out of 21 months apart it needs a bit of thought. For example whether I move down there or stay up here amongst other things.

  8. #8
    Moderator bodger's Avatar
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    The first 3 years of our married life we spent a grand total of six months, there or there abouts, together what with tours, exercises and random trawls. It's not great but you do manage.

  9. #9
    Senior Member spanner's Avatar
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    Agree with Boots about don't plan anything, or take any notice of what is said as it is bound to change. Past 4 years since I moved to be with Mr S he has been on a 4 months away, 8 months home rotation which was not expected, plus each rotation has changed dates, then the powers that be moved the shifts. remember a pencil and rubber are your best friend.
    He's just been given a date he is going to leave his current posting which is so far in the future I can't believe it, and am taking it with a pinch of salt.
    As Bodger says you just manage, can't really explain how, but you just do.

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    Oh after Sandhurst plus 3 years in I'm used to things changing continually! Still though, we've got nothing else to work on other than to consider the possibilities and plan for them. My job ties me in for 5 years, and I have to decide before Christmas where I take, and so sadly decisions have to be made based on current rumours. I managed Sandhurst, Kenya, Afghan and various other courses so I'm sure I will manage, but I have found the worry factor harder for afghan than the others. Courses and other trips I can do but alternate herricks I think could be a struggle. I don't sit at home worrying (I haven't got time!) but it's a niggle.

    But look on the brightside, he treats me to posh hotels on r&r, I get actual hand written love letters in the post, and we're getting a new car with the tour bonus.

    So we now have a wedding to plan and execute in the 5 months he's (probably) home for!

  11. #11
    Moderator Heli's Avatar
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    Top tip Lilly - make sure that you can move your wedding and reception date without charge - and don't buy your dress too early in case it is completely wrong for the season. Our long planned Summer wedding ended up being a Winter one courtesy of the Army. Malmaison were amazing and moved the date twice for us without charge or question, but I know of other Army couples who lost deposits.
    Same goes for the honeymoon. Mr. H was on standby and could have been recalled at any point, so we had to book flexible airline tickets.

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    Thank you Heli, that's good advice! I want to get married at Sandhurst but to be honest we've not actually looked into it yet (but I know it's mess prices- that's why I want to get married there, the price of alcohol is directly linked to how fun a wedding is in my eyes!) so I wonder if they have a policy on cancelling for army reasons. You'd think so, but this is the army we're talking about! Alternatively may just do a quickie in a registry office and have a proper one another time!

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    Ps anyone know if there is insurance available for such things?

  14. #14
    Senior Member Joey's Avatar
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    Yup, we got wedding insurance through Voyager - covered having to move things as well as cancellation if anything happened to him on HERRICK 15.

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    I personally would really struggle with only 5 months home between two 7 (possibly one 9) month tours. I think that is a long time to be apart. In my circumstances I would be very upset if he went, yes its a promotion, yes its his career, but what about the children that never see him, or sharing a life with us? What about the sacrifices we make on a weekly basis, year after year? I know the army comes first in a lot of (most) things, but I value my family and relationship and sometimes I think that has to take priority (where there is a choice involved). Sometimes I think why does it have to come down to me and the kids giving up this and giving up that for his career? He is not the only one trying to forge a good career and future for us. It always comes down to us having to re-adjust, re-arrange, cancel, and look after everything in his absence. I am not complaining (more of a vent) about this and I have been doing it for the last 4 years which I know is a relatively short time compared to a lot of ladies on here, but I think if he had a choice and he asked my opinion on whether he should go, in this situation I would be honest and say I don't want you to go, and the main reason it would be is because of the kids. He would then make his own choice, and I would support him in it; it would probably be a bitter pill to swallow if he did decide to go, but at least I would have been honest with him, and he knew how I felt about it. It might sound selfish, but there has to be some sort of balance between what we both put in and get out of the relationship.


    PS we just got wedding insurance through voyager too.
    Last edited by siany; 17-08-2012 at 19:29. Reason: forgot to mention insurance

  16. #16
    Moderator Heli's Avatar
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    Sometimes putting themselves up for something which is tough on the family is short term pain for long term gain. Just sayin'.

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    I think i would struggle with that. But i've got it all to come.. he's working 6 months in afghan then 6 months working in the uk for the next 2 years. Rubbish isn't it!!
    It's hard on little ones aswell
    x

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    I'm totally torn between telling him not to go, and just keeping my mouth shut. We can't even discuss it properly (bloody sat phones!) and it's not even half-confirmed yet.
    On the one hand I think it's a very long time to be apart in a short space of time, and that both I and he need some time at home in semi normality. (courses I can deal with.). On the other hand I don't want to say not to go as I know he will definitely not go if I ask him not to. That's without question. He is already worried about the effect all this has on me and don't want to burden him any further. I also appreciate that promotion is important and tours are important. Ie doing a tour at that rank helps you when going for further promotion.
    Apologies, I appear to be going round in circles in my head!

    The other thing is I have an incredibly demanding career (and that's saying something for an army family!) where I often have to do 90 hour weeks, 12 day stretches at a time, lots of weekends, etc etc. He's super supportive of me and would never tell me not to do something for work if it would help me. (not that I ever get a choice re my rota!)

    At the end of the day we are massively strong and would cope with whatever the army throws at us, but I value my family life too. I'm a funny mix of homely and career minded. The day career is more important to me than family and friends is the day I leave my job. That's an unusual view point in my line of work, most people would step over their grannies to beat their colleagues.

    And I have an irrational fear of not being able to get pregnant. We can't very well try for a baby very hard, or god forbid, go through fertility treatment if he's not around. Stupid, pointless worries I know, but when I should be asleep post night shift your mind works in funny ways!

    I guess I just crack on, see what curve balls life throws at us and try to deflect them any way I can. I've treated this tour as an adventure, and tried to revel in the old fashionedness of getting hand written letters, and the excitement of r&r and homecoming, but there's only so long you can convince yourself it's an adventure!

    9 weeks to push, will see what happens when he gets back, and in the meantime plan my career/living arrangements as best I can.

  19. #19
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    Crikey what a rant! Am going to look at Voyager insurance now and then maybe sneak a peak at some wedding dress pictures to cheer myself up.

  20. #20
    Senior Member dizzy.chick's Avatar
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    I have ummed and ahhed about writing this but I thought it might help your view point. I have asked Mr D not to go on tour before, he had been back from Op Telic for four months and he had spent almost all of that time in Germany. His first day back in the UK (literally I had just driven him home from the airport) and the phone rings- his new unit asking if he can start early and deploy in the next two weeks. I couldn't help myself. I just cried. Not loud and hysterical- that would have probably been ok. No just silent tears pouring down my cheeks whilst I told him- if you want to go then go.

    I think it was obvious to him that my tears were saying something else. He turned them down. He didn't get his promotion first time around and the reason given was a lack of recent deployment. I felt awful. He kept saying he didn't want to deploy that soon after getting back but I know it was because of me he said no.

    So when they offered him to deploy last year I kept myself in check. Told him I was happy for him and that the medals parade was worth it ect. well I think fate was teaching me a lesson because less than 5 months after he got home he jetted off once more to the dusty place. In these 12 months I will see him for around 47 days (if leave goes to plan etc).

    I won't lie it has been really hard. We aren't trying for a family but we have just got our first house together and doing all the things we had planned to do together on my own hasnt been the best. There are some positives he is being noticed by those higher up, I can hear how much he is enjoying it even though he is exhausted and that makes all the rubbish back here worth it.

    He is due a new posting at the end of the year. the chance of them asking him to go is slim, I think he would probably say no but if not, well he best get me a bloody good tour present!!
    Anitalouisa likes this.
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