The Six Degrees of Separation of Military Spouse Friendships

The Six Degrees of Separation of Military Spouse Friendships

A friend and I were talking the other day about how we had met through a mutual friend, and how there really does seem to be six degrees of separation of military spouse friendships within the military community. When you meet someone new, they might also know someone you know.

There have been so many times when this has happened to me. I meet someone new, we add each other on Facebook, and I learn that they are friends with someone I already know.

A friend from Germany might be stationed near a friend I met through blogging.

A former neighbor of mine might end up becoming a new neighbor of someone else I have met during my time as a military spouse.

I can meet someone who just moved here, and it turns out they are good friends with a girl I knew from MOPS, who moved away from here years ago.

They say the military is a small world, and each branch is even smaller. Add online connections and a lot of us military spouses know one another, or know each others friends. And this…can be a good thing.

Knowing that someone has a mutual friend can allow us to be a little bolder in pursuing a new friendship. If a friend of ours gets along with them, we might get along with them too. And that can help all of us when it comes to making new friends.

As military spouses, we don’t all have the luxury of staying in the same place for most of our military life years. Either we are moving, or our friends are, or both. As you think about your current circle of friends, you know that three years from now, things are not going to look the same. They might not even be the same a year from now.

As much as we know this is all apart of military spouse life, saying goodbye to a good friend is never going to be easy. In some cases, saying goodbye to a good friend is going to break our hearts, and no amount of preparing for that will help.

I am thankful that we do live in a time of social media, despite its downfalls. Not only can I keep in touch with my family, but I can stay in the lives of the many friends I have made during my time as a military spouse.

Things won’t be the same after you say goodbye to someone. That is life. Even if you can see another again, and I hope that you are able to, life just goes on and things change.

My best friend in Germany and I haven’t seen one another for 9 years. We have both added another child neither one of us have ever met. I don’t doubt that we would have a good time if we saw each other again, but it wouldn’t be the same as it was back in 2010 when we said goodbye.

I am thankful we are able to keep in touch. To see how our children are doing, to connect and hear about each other’s lives, to still be apart of them, even in such a different way than it was before.

As much as I want to stop time when it comes to my friendships, I know that isn’t possible. I mourn the time we no longer spend together, and I cherish every memory we have ever had. Still, I know that the best thing I can do is move forward and be open to new friendships, whereever they might be.

And knowing that so many of the people I meet today have some sort of connection to someone I already know is comforting. That allows this introvert to open up a little more, and learn more about the new people I meet in my life.

If you are a new military spouse, you might be thinking that this couldn’t possibly happen to you. That everyone you meet is completly new to you and you have no connection to them in any way. But give it time.

As the years go on, you will meet more people. And as you PCS from one place to the next, your social network will grow. You will find your military world a little friendly, a little more comfortable, and a bit easier to navigate.

Have you ever made a friend simply because they were connected to someone you already know? Tell me your story!

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