2nd class, unchosen career

‘This study examines the employment decisions of heterosexual women married to military service members, and how their decisions to work or not work evolve over time within this context of uncertainty and high demands.’For some the pull that was exerted on the spouses was constant while for others the pull was amplified as the service… Continue reading 2nd class, unchosen career

Gendered, unpaid roles

‘The family and the military are both “greedy institutions” (Segal, 1986) and their competing demands can lead to conflict between work and family life for personnel.’The demands of the military can also extend to military families via experiences of relocation, separations and reunions, and deployment, resulting in poorer mental health and well-being among military spouses.’An… Continue reading Gendered, unpaid roles

No career; unrealised potential

‘As well as limitations on active employment choices, some spouses described the sacrifices they were required to make regarding employment or education because of the restrictions encountered through their contact with the military.’When speaking about these concessions, some women expressed feelings of resentment, frustration and unrealised potential.’As with tensions between the roles of employee and… Continue reading No career; unrealised potential

Internal conflict

‘All participants in this study had children. Many working spouses reported difficulties in balancing their family responsibilities with employment due to the cost and availability of formal childcare and – because of geographic distance from family members during accompanied postings – a lack of informal support.’For some spouses, this could lead to internalised conflict about… Continue reading Internal conflict

Getting out of the home

‘For other spouses, employment was less about providing an identity or status and instead related to a sense of purpose and structure to their lives. Such participants were largely content to take any form of employment that allowed them to feel they were productive outside the family home:”… I’ve been working six months since moving… Continue reading Getting out of the home

Balancing identities

‘Three types of social role were identified within this theme: employee, military wife and mother. Employment – and the identity of ‘employee’ obtained through work – was described by a number of participants as a positive influence on their well-being, enabling spouses to reclaim a sense of independence and self beyond the military community and… Continue reading Balancing identities