Thursday, April 7, 2011
Have you heard about this? Since I have numerous other Army Wives as friends on Facebook, my news feed has been filled with talks about military personnel not getting their next paycheck on the 15th.
Did you know that there are military families using food stamps to feed their families? How about that there are soldiers risking their lives to defend our country and yet are only getting paid less than $18,000 a year? I always wondered just how wealthy we would be if The Hubby was paid minimum wage per hour he is working. There is no overtime pay or time and a half for holidays. Do you think he gets Thanksgiving or Christmas off in Iraq?
While the Army provides basic housing allowance for rent and groceries and free health care, the system is entirely flawed. The rent for the house we live in is hundreds higher than what we are alloted. We chose to sacrifice having cable television and other nice things so that we can live in a house that we feel safe in. Although we can get "free" post housing, the homes provided by the Army are filled with pipe and mold problems along with other safety issues. And I only hear horror stories about the doctors and hospitals we are allowed to go to under our free health care system. There are women who go home to another state in order to have their babies and refuse to give birth at the hospital on post.
Even though The Hubby is an officer in the Army, his salary is not as high as some may imagine it to be. Before we got our tax refund and he deployed, we were living paycheck to paycheck, and thankfully we have a little bit of a cushion now. The end of the month was always incredibly stressful as we would watch our bank account carefully and hope that we were capable of paying all the bills. I don't know how enlisted soldiers and their families make it, especially with multiple children.
Again, we still have most of our tax refund in our checking account because we've treated the money as if we didn't have it. But imagine how devastating it would be if our paycheck does not arrive this month if we had already spent that money. I would have to use our credit card to pay for groceries and ask my sister for an advance to pay the water and electricity bills.
I've spoken to The Hubby about this situation, and he is very adamant that this will not happen, but I told him that his attitude would be totally different if this was going on three months ago.
And you know what's even more incredible about this whole thing? While the wives and other family members back home may complain, the soldiers overseas will continue doing their job with no hesitation. Yes, they will worry about feeding their families and keeping the lights on in their house back in the States, but the noble and courageous nature of an American soldier will keep them going. Not a paycheck.
Because we all know that no one signed up to join the Army for the big bucks.
*You can read the full article on this topic here.