Beyond Valentine’s Day: Show Your Spouse Love Even During Deployment

Every military spouse experiences holidays without their husband or wife, but many of us try to make the most of the missed occasion by doing something special for our loved ones who are away. Valentine’s Day is no exception to this, and milspouses around the world will spend time searching Pinterest for the perfect deployment gift to send– anything from care packages, to cards, to a personalized LoveBook, to even a simply long, romantic email letting them know how much we miss them.

But Valentine’s Day isn’t the only time we can show our loved ones who are forward that we love them, miss them, and are thinking about them. Despite our best efforts sometimes our desire to show our feelings can fall to the wayside when the stresses of deployments come into play. It can be difficult to find ways to reach out to your spouse when you aren’t physically together, but there are some things you can do to let your loved one know they are loved whether it’s Valentine’s Day or not.

The Love Dare: Deployment Style

The Love Dare is a book that explores the idea of unconditional love between spouses. Made into a popular movie, “Fireproof,” The Love Dare is a 40-day challenge in which a married couple is encouraged to complete one selfless act per day or reflect on certain parts of their relationship as a practice in getting loving your spouse through the good times and the bad times. The book gives you place to write and reflect on the impact of your actions so that you can grow and learn from the experience.

At an initial glance, The Love Dare challenge seems impossible to do when you have a spouse who is deployed. For example, Day 9 of the challenge says to greet your spouse with enthusiasm and a smile. That’s a bit hard to do during a deployment though! Luckily, there is a resource that has all the guesswork taken out of how to complete The Love Dare challenge during a deployment. The website Excellent or Praiseworthy gives you examples of how you can modify The Love Dare for a deployment. Using the example of Day 9, Excellent or Praiseworthy suggests sending an email “just because” (or waiting for a phone call, but we all know how likely that is!) to tell your spouse you’re thinking of them.

Although The Love Dare is based on religion and using Godliness to strengthen your relationship, it doesn’t mean you can’t do it if you aren’t religious. The message of The Love Dare is the same for all relationships, despite your religious affiliation: expressing unconditional love to your spouse even when it seems difficult or uncomfortable in order to bring you closer together. Deployments may not seem like the best time to work on your relationship with your spouse, but showing them you are continuing to put in a strong effort to love them through the hardest days of your relationship will surely strengthen your marriage in the long run.