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.