He Said, She Said: Spouse moves on post, seeks advice for making friends Print E-mail
Thursday, 28 September 2017
By Shaun and Pamela Collins
Special to GUIDON
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My husband and I have never lived on post before, but currently we have made the decision to make the move to on-post housing. I am concerned because I do not have kids.

When I go to unit functions with my husband, I feel that other spouses treat me as an outsider because of it. I am having a hard time coming to terms with our upcoming move because I want to make friends. I am an outgoing person and would like to meet new people but I already know that others ask questions about why I don’t have children.Do you have any  advice?

HE SAID: In my 27 years of service, I never knew anyone who judged people for having or not having kids. Couples more frequently are deciding not to have kids. It doesn’t matter where you live, people are people. If you live on post in an area away from your original home, you will likely have more in common with your on-post neighbors than your off-post neighbors.

If you want to make new friends, don’t just look at your neighbors as your potential friendship pool. Engage in activities you enjoy. You are much more likely to find people you can relate to if you do, it gives you a common ground from which to build a friendship.  

Don’t paint yourself into a corner with fear, all that can come from that is for you to not make friends and feel more isolated.

SHE SAID:  There seems to be an increasing number of people who have decided not to have children, or to wait to do so. On the other hand, there are couples who are incapable. I find it insensitive when people push this issue because they don’t know what category you fall into.  

People can be nosy and the most effective way to deter that is with a quick reply that lets them know they have crossed a line.

With that said, I also caution you about reading too much into what other people may say or do. If we expect or believe those around us feel a certain way, we may be overly sensitive to their innocent questions or comments.

Finally, I hope you can find another couple with like interests. Try and embrace your status as a couple enjoying each other’s company. Relay that you are in the phase of your life where having each other is enough and change the subject.

 (Editor’s note: Shaun and Pamela Collins were both career Soldiers with a combined history of military service spanning more than a half of a century. They have been where you  are, so if you are facing a difficult situation, ask them. Send your question to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .  This column and other original content  from Mr. and Mrs. Collins can be found at http://militarysuccessnetwork.com. The opinions expressed are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the Fort Leonard Wood Public Affairs Office or the GUIDON.)


Last Updated ( Wednesday, 11 October 2017 )