There are many single mothers out there, as many as ten million in the United States. A significant number of these mothers are also moms in military service. Choosing to join, or to enter the service is a difficult choice, and many mothers who joined after becoming a mother have weighed the choices. The policies regarding single parenthood vary from service to service. When joining the service single parents must make arrangements and give custody of their children to someone else. Servicemembers who become single parents while on active or reserve duty have to create a family care plan to be successful. Knowing how to access support and to find answers as a single parent can make all the difference.
The policy for single parents varies from service to service. It depends if one is on active duty or reserves. Entering the service for single parents entails naming someone else as guardian or giving over custody before going on active duty. To be successful you should have a well thought out family care plan.
Lieutenant Colonel Kelly Snyder is a single parent, and she was a single parent in the military for almost fifteen years. Now retired, Colonel Snyder was deployed and had duty stations at various locations around the globe and her son accompanied her. One thing vital to remember as a family, and as a military parent, is to have a plan. It is necessary to have a workable, reliable and well thought out plan. “I was blessed and had a number of people who could pitch in and help me, to care for my son without very much notice,” said Colonel Snyder.
A family care plan is a very spelled out, detailed child and family care plan that makes allowances for military duty, but provides for safe and secure setting at all times for family members. Features of the plan include having an alternative long care, and short care child care providers, and various logistical, financial and other elements. For Colonel Snyder having her parents available by made life much easier especially during overseas duty. “I don’t think I would have been able to stay in the service for twenty years if I had been forced to leave my son with friends during long deployments,” said Colonel Snyder. Having an effective and workable care plan makes all the difference, and offers a sense of security for family members while the Servicemember is on deployment. It spells out in detail the wishes of the service member.