The media and literature tends to focus on all the negatives that military kids face, like moving with the military.
Each article tends to paint a bleak picture full of negatives for the children of military parents. Whether it’s the quality of education these children receive or dealing with parents that come back from overseas with PTSD and what have you, the story is always a bad one.
This isn’t to say that children of military parents don’t face these issues with education and parents suffering with PTSD or other situations.
But there are also positives that come from being a part of an American military family, and it would be nice if these positives were talked about more often.
By painting the picture as always bleak, it makes it even harder for these children. Facing negative stereotypes each day is a bleak outlook for anyone.
And while moving with the military can be hard, there are also real positives to being a child of military parents.
The American Military Family: The Benefits of Military Life
Instead of dwelling on the pitfalls of being a military kid, let’s discuss the positives.
First off, there are many kids who grew up in a military family who say that undoubtedly, the military family lifestyle made them who they are…for the positive!
- Building Resiliency:
Many people, grown adults and children alike, have difficulty making changes of any kind.
Whether it’s change in schedule, a move, a breakup, or a new car even…some people struggle to adjust. It can be hard to relinquish old routines and start new ones.
However, military kids learn very early on how to cope with changes and become more flexible. This is an amazing life skill that not many children learn to build from an early stage. Most of us learn this as we get older, but military kids learn from the start and are more adaptable and flexible because they had to be, period.
- Exposed To Other Cultures & People:
Rather than staying sheltered, military kids meet people from around the world and get to experience different cultures and ways of life. Your average kid might move once in a childhood, but for military children who may move halfway across the globe and back, they learn through multiple moves how other people view life.
This makes them more open-minded, educated and perhaps, more empathetic to others’ point of view.
- More Responsibilities & Tighter Bonds:
The military child may have more responsibility than his or her civilian peers. It is also possible that through multiple moves and different cultural settings, military families form unique bonds that leave a positive impression on the children into adulthood.
- Deployments Build Character:
Yes, deployments are hard, but they are also character building for the whole family.
While tough experiences may hurt us, they also make us stronger. Military kids may learn to appreciate family members more, especially when they are here…and not far away and deployed. These experiences help military children to build character that turn them into strong and capable adults.
While the military lifestyle can absolutely be difficult for children and adults, it can also be incredibly positive. It’s important to see all sides of the story.