This post is from new blogging buddy discovery of mine. I happened upon her blog only a couple months ago and was hooked! Absolutely lovin' it and she has inspired a few blogging ideas of my own (with full credit of course!). She's amazingly fit women, and wonderful mama to their darling daughter and a super wifey to her super hubby!!! She's a fellow mil-spouse and has some awesome tips for you fellow spouses out there!!
Hi everyone! I am SUPER excited to be guest posting for Rheanna today. My name is Madeline and I blog at Food, Fitness, and Family. I mainly write about good food, sweaty workouts, and life as a family of three but at the center of it all I am an Army wife raising an Army family. As any military spouse knows marrying into the military thrusts a never-ending cycle of changes upon as, and we, as women, adapt and move on. One of the biggest changes a military family can face is a PCS (permanent change of station). Having done this three times in the last three years I am no stranger to packing up our lives and starting fresh. Our most recent PCS was 2 months ago to Fort Stewart, GA. One of the hardest things about moving is leaving an established social network and heading into the unknown. I jump in feet first when I get to a new duty station and establish a new social network as soon as possible. These are some tips that have worked for me when trying to meet friends at a new duty station.
1. Check out your FRG. Before you gasp and say “not the FRG!” hear my out. An FRG is a family readiness group designed to support the families. While not every FRG is a good one there are many many out there that are. Before you make a judgment on your new FRG try it out. Then before you write it off because you don’t like it, try to get involved. Seek THEM out. They might not have your contact info yet or know you’re there to welcome you. Send them an email and ask for the information.
2. See if your installation has a spouses’ club. Most duty stations still have some sort of volunteer spouses’ club. Some still have them as officer or enlisted spouses’ clubs but more and more they are being combined into one. There is typically a monthly luncheon that you can attend. Again, don’t knock it until you try it ;)
3. Check out MeetUp.com. It’s a free service for forming groups. If you have kids this is a great way to see if there is an established playgroup at your installation. I have found 3 here at Fort Stewart already. If you don’t have kids but have some sort of passion, like running, see if there’s a running group nearby.
4. Host a BBQ. Your spouse has it much easier when it comes to making new friends because they are thrust into a new unit where they see people every day and can pick and choose who they want to hang out with. Mooch off them. I always invite my husband’s friends, WITH their families, over for a BBQ. I have made some of my best friends this way. The added bonus is that since our spouses already got along it opened the door to a lot of “couples” functions.
5. Go in with an open mind. True friendship often comes in the unlikeliest places. Remember that every other military spouse at your installation has been thru what you’re going thru. I would like to think we are pretty welcoming bunch.
6. Pay It Forward. Once you’ve been at your installation for a while and you have grown your network of friends, reach out to the new wives. Remember what it felt like to not know anyone and be the person welcoming them to the area. Invite them out to coffee. Pay it forward.
Any-who … thanks Rheanna for letting me hang out in your corner of the blogosphere for the day. J
What tips do you have for spouses moving to a new duty station? How do you go about meeting new people?