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Just Married a Soldier…Now What?


I just received an email from a young lady about to get married to a soldier. You know…. there aren’t a lot of resources out there on what to do next. What paperwork needs to be done? How do I go about moving in with my hubby? Where do I go? What do I do when I get there? Being an Army brat and being in the military myself, I honestly never thought about these lingering questions…and lingering questions cause stress…a state of mind we would all rather not be in. Let’s go over some of the things you should be thinking about.

You’ve got your marriage certificate in hand and are wondering what to do next? If you haven’t gotten that far yet, read here about military weddings and the steps you need to take beforehand. The first step after tying the knot, should be for your new soldier husband to get MANY copies of that certified marriage certificate. He is going to bring it to his personnel office on post and do the required paperwork. Until that is done, frankly, the military unfortunately views you as a nobody. I don’t like it either, but that’s the honest truth, and I’m all for being honest here. Your husband is going to enroll you in something called DEERS (basically a computer database) and get you an ID card, which becomes your magic ticket. This will give you access to all military programs and benefits, not to mention access getting on post.

If you are in another location, your soldier hubby is going to have to pay for your move out of pocket. If you get married BEFORE he is due to move to his next duty station, the military will pay to move you there too.

This New Military Spouse Checklist does a good job of detailing the paperwork steps you need to take to integrate yourself into military life. The article does say to update your will and power of attorney. I know at a young age, I didn’t have either of those. So, don’t fret. When you get on post, you’ll be able to make an appointment at the post legal office and get all that done for free.

Here are some of the links mentioned in the article:

Social Security Administration Name Changes

SGLI Insurance (every soldier is required to sign up or decline in writing this life insurance; cheap insurance and highly recommended as peace of mind); also read my article on more insurance options

Tricare (the military healthcare system; your husband will take you to the Tricare office on post, but you can read more about the benefits and how the system works at this site)

United Concordia (your dental care provider; again your husband will sign you up for this when he signs you up for your health insurance)

Read the quick blurb, A New Military Spouse’s Orientation Guide to the Military Way of Life. One of the first things you’ll notice, is that this not civilian life! There is a certain sense of order, tradition and way of doing things in the military…not to mention all the acronyms! It is possible to speak a whole sentence without using a single word out of the English dictionary. Honestly, you may be overwhelmed at first, but it helps to know that every General or Colonel’s wife started out right where you are…clueless to how things are done in the military. They didn’t just wake up one morning knowing all this stuff! So keep that in mind as you go along.

With that being said, when you first get to your military post, visit your Army Community Service (ACS) office. Not only will they have newcomer classes, they even have resources for working spouses, classes on everything from being a new mom to learning about military lingo and procedures through their Army Family Team Building (AFTB) classes…see, I told you about the acronyms.

The National Army Community Service website, has TONS of information for family members and spouses. It also has links to all the other important resource websites you should become familiar with. Military One Source is one you should visit and also Family Readiness Group.

Okay, your are probably thoroughly overwhelmed at this point! Since I was a company commander’s wife back in the day, I knew a lot of new Army wives. The best way to get a feel of Army life, to understand what your husband goes through every day and to meet others just like you, you have to have faith and just jump in! Visit your local Army Community Service. Go to the monthly meetings of your husband’s family readiness group. Being a single soldier, he probably didn’t have much contact with that organization. This group is just a way for your husband’s boss to keep you, the spouse informed, plus it’s a great way to meet the other wives and children of your husband’s coworkers. Some of the meetings will be informative, others will be fun with potlucks, classes, crafts and outings. It’s important to make connections with others in your shoes, as well as with the seasoned veteran wives who are mostly happy to help.

Sign up for the latest round of Army Family Team Building (AFTB) classes at your Army Community Service (ACS). You’ll feel more comfortable knowing what all those acronyms are, plus the classes can be fun finding out why the Army does things the way it does. Again, another chance to connect with others.

If you have kids, go by Child Youth Services (CYS). Not only do they have low-cost after school programs and services, but they have tons of activities, sports and other events for kids! I have fond memories of taking my little ones to play soccer there and to do the annual Easter Egg Hunt.

In talking with other wives, there is one book that always comes recommended. It’s called The Homefront Club by Jacey Eckhardt. She talks about living the “happy military life”. It’s not so much a “how to” book, and it does give the viewpoint of an officer’s wife rather than an enlisted wife, but it’s more of a “what to expect as a spouse” type of read. Good reading and worth a look.

Oh, the young lady who wrote me the nice email did ask about her medical and dental records and mentioned she had just had all her check-ups done. Just bring those records with you. You won’t need to have exams right away that I know of, but I would hang onto your civilian records for future reference. Don’t turn them into the military healthcare system or they will become property of the military, and you’ll have a hassle getting them back if you should need them somewhere down the road. Or, you can always make copies for your records if they’re not too thick and you still want to hand them over. Again, as far as I know, there is no requirement to get any health check ups before or after getting married to a soldier.

In the military healthcare system, you schedule a yearly PAP and if you are over a certain age (I believe 40 or if you are high risk), a mammogram. Eye exams are yearly. You also get a physical every five years, where they do bloodwork and a general “once over”. I know I get reminders in the mail when I am due to make an appointment. As for dentalwork, you are authorized cleanings and check ups every six months. You track that on your own. I have never gotten a reminder, and I unfortunately do have Army wife friends who only go to the dentist if there is a problem. Hey, if it’s not costing you anything and preventative medicine is the way to go, then just go and get it done. You’ll be a happier person for it!

If you have any tips you could pass on to new Army or military wives, please do share them! I know I mentioned mostly Army resources above, but each service has similar resources. I believe the Navy calls their family readiness office the Fleet and Family Support Center (here’s an office in Hampton Roads, VA). The Air Force calls theirs Airman and Family Readiness Flight (Randolph AFB in Texas). The Force Health Protection and Readiness site has grouped all the websites together for all the services, so take a look there if you are not finding what you are looking for.

Added 3/7/2008, thanks Spousebuzz: Be sure to register for Military One Source. Once on the site, do a search for “army spouse guide”, click on the guide. It is a wonderful resource for ALL new military wives, not just Army. It also comes in a handy PDF file for you to download and print. The guide goes over many of the things I mentioned here in this post, just in more detail and with pretty pictures!

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45 Responses to “Just Married a Soldier…Now What?”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so much for that information!!!! You have NO idea how much that helped me and put my mind at ease! Weddings are stressful enough, not to mention having to pick and move across the good ‘ol US of A, and then move out of the country. But then to go in blind, and not really know what to expect just adds to it! I have learned one thing on my own however. Being with a soldier definately isn’t for everyone. It requires you to be an independant “dependant”, to be strong for him when you want to break down and cry, to leave everything you have known for the past 20 some years to be with the man you love for maybe 6 months before his second or third or sometimes fourth tour, etc. I could go on and on and on here, and all the military wives know that. But that is what makes us special and unique. All those things make us proud, because our husbands, in my eyes, have the most important job in the world! And I can’t imagine my life any different than it is right now. It’s perfect! Chaos and all!

    Thank you again for the wonderful tips you gave me! I’m sure you will be hearing from me again soon! ha ha!

    -Sam

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so much! Your post was very helpful. I had no idea.

  3. Joebelle says:

    Great site, will be sending to my nephews who both married civilian women and are asking me what to do next? Thanks, Joebelle

  4. Anonymous says:

    As an Army wife of almost 5 years, I wanted to say that I agree with most everything you blogged about. The only exception would be the yearly reminders for eye exams and Paps! I have never received a reminder. So make sure you keep track of those yourself as well. Depending on the duty station, a spouse may not be able to get eye exams on base as well. Dental is great and free as long as you don’t need work done and then it can be costly!

  5. Penelope says:

    A wonderful article! I am also a (new) military spouse and a foreign national. Unfortunately there is not a lot of information available focusing on U.S. military and foreign spouses (Fiancee Visa, Green Card etc). My husband and I had a tough time understanding the immigration policy, and we did not get a lot of support. Luckily in the end everything worked out well. I learned so much during the past few years, I felt the need to share my experiences (both the good and the bad). Recently I designed a website and blog for new immigrants, new military spouses and new moms.

    Website: http://www.trialsofpenelope.com
    blog: http://www.trialsofpenelope.blogspot.com

  6. Krystie says:

    I am about to become an Army Wife, and this has been the most informative article I have found to date. But my fiancee is stationed in NC, and I live in NY. I will be staying here, because I have one year left to get my BA.

    Does any one know, what is the procedure for circumstances like that?

  7. ****Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife**** says:

    Congrats to you on your marriage and your BA! To answer your question, your husband will be what is known as a “geographical bachelor” or an unaccompanied soldier.

    If you are not moving with him, then your husband’s orders to his assignment will say unaccompanied (rather than accompanied, which means with dependents). This will allow him to get BAH, your housing allowance, at the rate of the zipcode where YOU are residing (which will obviously be more for NY than NC). He will have to work with his command to get approval to live in the barracks. Typically, soldiers in the rank of E5 and below, live in the barracks or “single soldier quarters”. The Army used to have an official geographical bachelor program where it was automatically allowed but now it is only automatic overseas…each command handles it now at its level, case by case. It supposedly takes away from the quality of life from the lower ranking single soldiers if you have too many higher ranking soldiers in the barracks.

    If he is authorized to live off post (ie, his rank is high enough and his command allows it), he will be paying his rent or whatever “out of pocket”…that will be on his own…so there will obviously be extra expenses involved with maintaining two households which the Army will not reimburse him for.

    I believe you also will be eligible for separation pay….soldiers get this on the 31st day (and beyond) separation from their family…it isn’t much, but it is something. I don’t think this is just for deployed or soldiers on temporary duty.

    When you are ready to move, your husband will have to petition his command to get you “on his orders”, so that he will be accompanied. As far as I know, if you get married AFTER he joined the Army, your move is on your own dime as well.

    There are a few wives over at armywives.com who are unaccompanied…how about writing a post over there?

    Good luck to you!

  8. ****Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife**** says:

    Since I do get a lot of new Army wife questions, especially about relocating, please follow these tips below:

    http://www.goarmy.com/families/relocating.jsp

    When you know your new duty station, you can investigate the Army’s Relocation Readiness Program of your new post… Army Community Service (ACS) runs this program. Find an Army post in your area and google “the name of the post, ACS, relocation readiness program”…you can get some resources now. Here’s an example of one.

    Ft Hood
    http://www.hoodmwr.com/ACS/rrb.html

  9. rachel says:

    Thank you so much for this site! I'm still unclear on one thing though and I feel in my search on the internet I have found the right place for the answers. My fiance is stationed in Kansas but deployed in Iraq right now. He comes back in August and is coming to California where I live so we can get married. He has orders to move to Germany in November and of course I want to join him. I still have some school to finish up and won't be able to leave California until October. Is there anyway the military will pay for us to move my things from California to Kansas or even better yet California to Germany? Or will we have to pay out of pocket for my things to be moved to Kansas then the military will pay to move them to Germany? OH! Also can we sign me up while he's on leave for DEERS and Tricare at a base close to me instead of the one he's stationed at in Kansas? Thanks again. Your help is so greatly appreciated!

  10. ****Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife**** says:

    Congrats! Once you get officially married, your husband can do all the paperwork to get you in DEERS and Tricare thru his unit (where he is located). You can then travel to your nearest Army post to get your ID card and any other admin things that need to be done.

    Tours to Germany are accompanied tours, meaning you can bring your family. He has to make sure he gets you written on his orders (assignment on paper to Germany). Only then can a movement be authorized for your goods from CA to Germany. The best place to get your question answered, after you are married, is to contact the Transportation Office (can google that + name of post) and ask them. I don't personally know what you are authorized. I know we get authorized a shipment into storage, a main household goods shipment and an unaccompanied baggage shipment to Germany…you can google those phrases to find their definitions. You may also want to ask on one of the military.com spouse message boards. Good luck to you.

  11. rachel says:

    Thank you so much again. All your help is greatly appreciated not only from me but I'm sure from so many others. Last time I was PCSing I was an AF brat and it was quite some time ago. Looking forward to the move to Germany even if it will be incredibly stressful, a bit scary, and still yet so familiar. :)

  12. Anonymous says:

    Thanks so much for all this info..so far I have not found a site as detailed as this as far as "what to expect". I really appreceiate it. I do have a question I cant seem to find an answer to and am hoping you can direct me in the right direction. How does all this work with kids from previous marriage? I have a 10 and 9 year old, my custody agreement states I am the primary provider, and I can live in any geographical location. It also stated that I had the sole authority to obtain a passport for them-didnt have to have his permission. How will this agreement hold up with the NAVY? My fiancee is overseas now and will be PCSing about 4 months after we get married, most likely to another station overseas. Where does that leave us. Can my ex stop us from joing him if he gets accompanied orders?

  13. ****Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife**** says:

    Congrats to you! I wish I could give you better advice…unfortunately, I know very little about adopting other than foreign births AFTER you are married.

    I would think that if you do not have sole custody, the father, in most states, would have the right to agree (or disagree) with what the kids are up to.

    You should tell your fiance to stop by his post's legal office ASAP and get guidance from them, as I am sure he is not the first one to be faced with this.

    If you like, I'd love to have the information you find on my site…if you find you'd like to help after you have delved into this, please let me know, and we could put the information on this blog to help others.

    Good luck!

  14. pink_suspenders says:

    Hi! Thanks so much for the info. I'm in a relationship with an E6 in the us army, and we've been talking about getting married some time next year. I'm currently located in South East Asia, while he's in the US. If we get married and I move to the US, does the Army pay for the move or we'd have to pay for it on our own? Right now, he's in SC but might be getting orders to move in a year or two. Thanks so much!

  15. ****Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife**** says:

    Congrats to you! Unfortunately, you'd be paying for the move out of pocket. It is my understanding that only if you are a dependent (so married to him) BEFORE he gets orders to his next duty location would the government pay for your move to the next duty location. You may want to double check with his nearest Transportation Office on his post for verfication, but that is how I understand the regulations. Sorry about that!

  16. Anonymous says:

    My fiance is fixing to graduate from Ait school. He already has two Dependants so they said to wait to get married until the little time we have in between him graduating and getting stationed but we have to do it in between those couple of days in order for us to go with him. would it affect him getting a job having three Dependants because I really want to go ahead and get married before they tell us where we are going inorder to have all the paperwork done in time. Any suggestions?

  17. Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife says:

    Your husband’s marital status has absolutely no bearing on any future assignments. You are going to have to decide what is best for you and your new family. Obviously, being in the military is a way of life, so technically, you do have to plan around his schedule and when he is free. It would be nice for him to have time off afterwards but military life doesn’t always support that.

  18. Absolutely perfectly authored. It won’t surprise me to see your audience demanding a lot more. I can definitely declare that I am going to be back to get even more. Many thanks for your efforts.

  19. Katie says:

    Hi, thanks for all this very helpful information! I am marrying my fiancee so that we can be together when he gets relocated in two weeks. I’m trying to figure out when I should give my 2 weeks notice to my job but I don’t know how long it will take for them to have room for me at the base? A week, a month, 2 months…. any answers?

  20. Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife says:

    It’ll depend on quite a few factors. You need to find out from the housing office at that current post what the wait time is for onpost housing. Many posts have waits from 6 months to 1 year! That means you would have to find something off post…either temporarily or permanently (depending if you want to move twice or not). Either way, you must go thru the housing office for that post. Some off post realtors and apartment complexes and landlords will be blacklisted, and you definitely want to make sure that ANY home you rent includes a military clause as well (should you get orders before your lease is up…it allows you to back out of it). Again, the housing office can help you with this. If you want to see how much money your spouse will get for housing for that area, you can calculate it online using the calculator here. You will need the zipcode of the base/post and your spouse’s rank to put in the calculator. This is the amount the military will give you for rent or you can use it for a mortgage. Don’t take buying a house lightly if you should go that route! Get smart before doing that if you are even thinking about it:-) http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/bahCalc.cfm. For example, on the calculator, a Private is an E-1 and so on. If you need help, let me know, and WELCOME!!

  21. Arlinee says:

    I’m very confused,hope you can help me clarify my situation. I met a wonderful guy who is in the Army, he is a Sgt. We have a relationship with plans for the future, He ask me about to write a letter to his superiors because he wants to change his status which is a widower. How do I do that and what do I have to state in the letter? I try to ask him but our conversations are short, because he is posted righ now overseas and we can’t talk much. What should I do, please help. Thanks

  22. Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife says:

    That’s the strangest thing I’ve ever heard. There is no such thing as writing a letter to his superiors to change his status as a widower. He will be a widower until he remarries again.

  23. Robyn says:

    Thanks so much for your blog. I am a married female looking forward to enlisting. My husband won’t be moving out of state with me at anytime. Would I still receive BAH? I’m assuming I wouldn’t be allowed to live in the barracks as a married woman.

  24. admin says:

    From what I remember when I was in, those who chose not to move their families were geographical bachelors. 1SGs used to allow them space in the barracks, but it was apparently not authorized, so that stopped….at least for NCOs. I would think as a junior enlisted, you would have to stay onpost. I know that’s a requirement overseas Army-wide. Not sure what the regs are these days! I think you can either go with the BAH rate at either your duty station or where your spouse is….obviously pick the greater of the two. Maintaining two households can get expensive. Thanks for the kind words, and I wish you all the best!

  25. Melanie says:

    New to this and wandered onto this site THANK GOD!! My fiancee and I will be marrying in January and he has orders to deploy to Afghanistan 2-3 weeks following the wedding. He is currently stationed at Ft Drum in NY and I am in Georgia. When he returns from deployment he will be re-enlisting and requesting to be transferred to Gordon here in Ga. Is it going to be possible to do all the paperwork after the wedding for DEERS and BAH or should we try and fill out any beforehand since it’s so close to his deployment? Also when I calculate the BAH for us do I use his zip code for Drum or mine here? Thanks in advance for any info:) so happy I found this!

  26. admin says:

    If I remember correctly, you can elect to choose your location or your husband’s. Congrats on your upcoming marriage! Oh to your other question, the military considers you a non-person til you get that certified marriage certificate to them to get you into DEERS. Nothing happens til you are in DEERS. Make sure you have your birth certificate and also any divorce decrees, all certified, together now, so you’ll have those ready. You won’t be able to do any of the paperwork til you officially exist to the Army, ie once officially married. I’d also make sure to get bank accounts in both names (the ones you will pay bills out of), get an appointment for a general Power of Attorney and other paperwork you will need when he deploys. His personnel office should have a checklist on things that need to get done before he leaves. If you get a special POA to deal with his finances, even better…just in case Finance screws up his pay or BAH or anything else, although he will have access to that stuff when deployed.

  27. Susan says:

    My daughter’s boyfriend is in the Air Force and they are planning on getting married sometime early 2014 (or when leave time will allow). He is currently in Tech School, with first duty station at Langley AFB in VA. He will be midway through his stay there by then. Are there some things he can be making plans for to speed up the process of getting her there with him after they marry, or is there nothing to be done until they are actually married?

  28. Rusty Craig says:

    This is a great and informative post. I’m sure a lot of women who are engaged to a soldier or who just married one would learn a lot from it.

  29. Sarah says:

    Thank you for all the information on here, it’s really helpful. I’m engaged to a future soldier. He’s currently in OSUT at FT Benning, but he comes home for a holiday block leave. Since he’s still technically in training and does not know any future information about where he will have his first Duty Station, I’m a little bit at a loss. We were living together in NJ when he enlisted. I’m wondering if we get married on his Holiday leave if we’ll be able to get the paperwork accomplished all during that time, and if I’ll be able to move with him to his first Duty station after graduation in April, or if we’re married if he’ll get BAH for our apartment in NJ, even if his station is elsewhere? Sorry if it’s confusing, and any input is greatly appreciated!

  30. admin says:

    Thank you! Congrats to you both. Once you are married, and his next assignment is accompanied (not overseas as an example to a 1 or 2 year tour), then you can be added to his orders. This means also the military authorizes to move all your stuff at their expense. I’m not sure how long the paperwork will take, but if he immediately turns in your marriage certificate to get you into the system (DEERS is the first thing, then ID card, Tricare medical, etc), it shouldn’t get too long to get you added…especially since some of those first assignments aren’t set in stone til very close to graduation! If you decide to stay in NJ, he can choose that for his BAH location if you are there…or the place where he will be. You will have that choice.

  31. MeghanAlisa says:

    I was just wondering if the dental care would pay for braces or would we have to pay out of pocket for it? I’m getting married in April to my fiancé before he deploys in May. We are getting married at the court house and then planning a big wedding when he gets back home. I need braces medically and I was wondering if I would have to pay for them or would the military do that for me?

  32. admin says:

    Stationed overseas we were lucky to get into a military medical dental facility and got free braces for our son. Since there are so few orthos over here and many deploy, their first order of business is all the servicemembers, so it’s difficult to find a spot. The Tricare dental website will tell you what they will pay per dependent. I believed the amount may be different for stateside. A friend was sent a check for a few thousand dollars from Tricare and arranged her own appointments. Another went to a Tricare provider on the list, paid up front, then was reimbursed by Tricare each time. She also had a max cap.

    I just read on the Tricare site for stateside ortho care, there is a 50% copay. See here http://www.tricaredentalprogram.com/tdptws/enrollees/benefits/ortho_conus.jsp.

  33. newbie-la says:

    Potentially silly question here, but here goes: are we required to have state certified copies of our marriage certificate (which cost mucho dinero), or just copies, like photocopies, of our official certificate? Oh, and as far as a “bunch of copies” goes, would 5 suffice, or should we have more? Thanks so much.

  34. admin says:

    I have both! A few times I’ve needed the certified copies. I think we have about 3-5 copies of each, so you should be okay:-)

  35. chelsea A says:

    My fiance is going to be enlisting in the marines… when he gets done with his basic we will be getting married… I and my two children(previous relationship, but we have a custody agreement worked out for this situation/.) Plan on moving with him when he is placed where he is supposed to be, i guess my question, after being told and reading on some military forums that with him being a “newbie” that it will be almost impossible to get on on base home, for at least a few years….is this true? I can’t bare to be separated from my new husband for so long…. I’m extremely new to all of this, so i want to get some facts straight so i know what to expect…anything would be helpful, I’m already and anxious nervous wreck, a little relief would be great! /: (:

  36. admin says:

    Congrats to you! I can only tell you that many stateside posts especially have long waiting lists for on post housing. That means you are free to look for housing off post. Use my housing allowance (BAH) calculator on the right hand side of the page to see how much money you are authorized for housing. You can live off post until your # comes up on the housing list…sometimes as long as a year, or just stay off post…together…once his training is done. For junior enlisted your best bet will probably be an apartment complex. Do not sign any lease without seeing the onpost housing office! If you have other questions, let me know…I have got to run at the moment!

  37. chelsea A says:

    Thank you, that helped quite a bit, hes still a little indecisive about which branch he wants to join. Haha but it’ll all work out

  38. Debbie Newell says:

    My daughter just married a man in the Army National Guard it has been 8 months he has yet to take her to get her put on his deers. He says the only place he can do it here in north carolina is Raleigh Meps center. Please tell us if this is correct or can they go to any base or perhaps a military card center or something.

  39. admin says:

    Every military base has an ID card processing center. You can look online which one is nearest to you, call them, make an appt and let the DH know when the appt is. This is crap.

  40. kim says:

    I married my husband in 2011 he recently joined the army this month may. He is doing basic training im living in Arizona but his recruiter is in Virginia we were in the process of moving ihave know idea what to expect do I have to wait for him to graduate from basic before the deers come into play? How will I know when his graduation date? I feel like I know nothing I haven’t heard from him except for once which was a ten minute phone call which I wanted to say so much but was speechless. I dont have an address where I can write im confused and im starting to get frustrated. Who will answer my questions im his wife for God sakes not a girlfriend.

  41. admin says:

    You should be able to get into DEERS immediately! That is when the benefits start to kick in…can’t do anything without being in DEERS and getting an ID card. Your husband’s recruiter should be able to tell you where to go locally…at your nearest base or post. You may need a POA, but if you like, call the nearest post info line and ask for the ID card office and get connected to them to find out exactly what documents you need to bring with you. This should help. http://www.military.com/spouse/military-life/newbies-and-brides/checklist-for-new-military-spouses.html

    You also want to be covered for healthcare and Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) where you will get money according to your husband’s rank and you can apply that to the zipcode where you are living now (different zipcodes have different allowances, here is where you can calculate the amount you will get for housing. Use the zipcode for you area, as you will not be authorized a move while he is at basic training. Brand new privates are an E-1, see http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/bahCalc.cfm).

    Communication from basic training is VERY limited. They do this on purpose as part of their training. You should receive some kind of paperwork within the first 6 weeks giving you his mailing address and any other important info. Then about a month or so from graduation, you should receive more papers telling you about the when, where and how of graduation. He should probably be able to tell you by phone ahead of time at some point…before that, so make sure you make hotel reservations and transportation arrangements early enough.

    I know it is very frustrating, but this will give you a taste of the life of a military spouse and the need to be independent as our husbands go away often for training and for deployments and such. Once you are affiliated with a post, you’ll know more of the resources available to you and make friends with other milspouses going through the same things as you. Welcome to the family!

  42. Crissy says:

    I will be getting married next year in may and I don’t know what to do after that , like how long do I suppose to wait until I can fly out to his station and live with him , remind you he will leave for his next duty station and I won’t be tagging along , how long is the wait , until I can come out there with him?

  43. Elaine says:

    Oh! Thank you so much for making this blog! I’ve been searching online for what has to be done and what to do next after marriage? And so on.. I was so clueless. I’m getting married this coming October and my fiance is leaving for BCT on January 2014. And now, atleast it give me heads up on what I should be doing while he’s away from home.

  44. Mikkia says:

    Im so happy I found this website. This is very informative. My fiancé and I are planning to get married at the court house near his post in 2 weeks. He was informed that he was moved to the top of the list for Korea. My question is will I be able to go with him once he gets his official papers? He told me that it takes 30 days or more to receive BAH and even longer to get a Visa.If he receives his orders before we gett get married, will I still be able to accompany him if we get very married and he process my paperwork in DEERS be fire he is scheduled to leave? I’m so confused on what to do!

  45. admin says:

    Congrats on getting married! First you have to see if his assignment in Korea is an unaccompanied (meaning no dependents; so shorter assignment) OR if it’s accompanied (a full three year tour with dependents). Some posts in Korea don’t even allow accompanied tours, period. Once you establish that and you know it is an accompanied tour, it’ll depend on the housing situation. I think many overseas orders by default delay the spouse and dependents’ arrival purely because of the housing situation. Our orders to Germany this last time was like this. We had to go thru the incoming housing office, verify that we could go with him, then were added to DH’s orders. We did spend about a month in the hotel, so be sure to read my blogpost about that…I’ll post it below. In your situation, sometimes the paperwork can be slow and it’s possible that your DEERS paperwork and being added to his orders will not happen before his departure. Then you would travel separately. It really is not a big deal…I have friends who prefer this actually…the husband sets up the household and the wife and kids arrive when everything’s all set. Each person is different but know that being a military spouse requires some independence and growth, and there will be PLENTY of opportunities where you will be on your own.

    See http://lifelessonsmilitarywife.com/?p=442

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