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Military OneSource Tip of the Week - Teenagers and Deployment

Source: Military Community and Family Policy

Here are some ways to help your teenager cope with pre-deployment stress:

  • Have a family discussion about how the deployment will affect each family member left at home. Topics like these may be especially important for your teenager:
    • What will my responsibilities be?
    • How will I get to after-school activities?
    • Will we have enough money?
    • Can I still drive the car?
    • How will I talk to you while you're gone?
    • What do we do if there's an emergency?
    • What if I don't like the changes?
    • What will happen to us if something happens to you?
  • Encourage your teenager to share her feelings with you. In the weeks before deployment, the service member will be spending more and more time on preparations for deployment. It's important for your teenager to know her concerns are being heard.
  • Plan some time for your teenager to spend alone with the deploying parent. This could be a scheduled event or just some downtime together, relaxing and having fun. Let your teenager suggest some activities.
  • Develop a relationship with your teenager's school counselors and teachers. Let them know about the deployment so they can watch for signs that your son or daughter may be struggling.

 

Your Family Support Center can give you information and support on many issues that affect service members and their families. And Military OneSource, a free 24/7 service from DoD, available to all active-duty, Guard, and Reserve members and their families, provides information and referrals plus face-to-face counseling. Call 1-800-342-9647 or access the Military OneSource website.

 

 

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