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It's natural to have high expectations about your loved one's return. Think about some of the expectations you have for your loved one's return--or, if he or she is already back, what expectations you did have.

Here are some expectations that spouses, partners, family and friends of returning veterans often have. Which expectations can you relate to?

  • I expect that my spouse, partner, or loved one will:
  • be relaxed and happy to be home from war.
  • not want to re-enlist.
  • be the same person I knew before the deployment.
  • want to celebrate the homecoming with friends and family.
  • want to spend time with me, doing things we used to enjoy.
  • bond quickly with the children.
  • help with childcare, bills, and household responsibilities.
  • help financially by looking for a civilian job.
  • express love for me and give me attention.
  • want to be sexually intimate.
  • be more dependable, responsible, decisive, and strong.
  • want my advice on life and things in general.
  • want to confide in me and tell me about problems.
  • have a clear sense of goals and responsibilities.
  • tell me about his/her military experiences.
  • want to hear about my experiences.
  • appreciate how well I managed things in his/her absence.
  • need time to readjust before life swings back to the way it was before deployment.
  • experience trauma from war, similar to what I've seen in movies and on TV.

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