Monday, June 27, 2011

Who's on twitter?

In an attempt at search engine optimization, I created a twitter account last November, but haven't used it much. My lack of a smart phone is a hindrance on tweeting, so I never remember to post anything.  I should, as it's a great way to publicize my blog and get more readers/community members.  Every once in a while I do a twitter search for trailing spouse keywords, and today I found the Trailing Husband blog:

That's how people find my blog too!  Depressing, but not depressing at the same time.

I am also now infinitely more google-able.  If you search "trailing spouse blog" (but without the quotes) I am on the second page.  That's up from the 17th!  That means that next time some lady all tripped up on gender expectations and fear of moving figures out that "trailing spouse", as odious as it sounds, is a term she can use, she may stumble onto my blog and feel a little better.  And find other people's blogs, and maybe stop stumbling.  Guys, too, because it's not boys against girls.  Gender expectations make things suck for everyone.

So, if y'all have twitter accounts, let me know and I'll follow you!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Defined by your job?

Eileen at Dissertation Under Construction wrote a piece yesterday called Visibility and Women's Work that really struck a chord for me:

J has worked at a summer theater every summer since I moved to Overcast three and a half years ago, and usually it's great.  Long hours, but the people he works with are mostly fun and reasonably acquainted with the fact that graduate school is work, since some of them are thinking about grad school themselves.  Except for a few people, mostly straight men, who seem to think that intellectual work, especially done by a woman, is not work at all.  I'm aware that I'm extraordinarily privileged, in that my university gave me a funding package which allows me to solely work on my dissertation during the summers.  I don't have to pick up a second job or teach unless I choose to, so when we meet people for drinks after work or whatever, my answer to "what did you do today" is usually "read another book" and not "rigged 500 pounds of lights/built a giant platform for people to dance on." 
She is a grad student, academic and pretty awesome.  But her work isn't seen by some (mainly men) as real.  In my years with J, I've never heard anyone dismiss his work (theoretical physics mainly done from a couch) as fluff.  I couldn't do what she does, and without people like her the breadth and diversity of our knowledge base would dwindle.  Why is it that tasks are deemed less important when you have a woman do it?

I need to realize (and remember, and repeat to myself) that people who think like this are major douchebags, and I don't negotiate with douchebags.  It will still irk me, but I should correct them when I can and move along.

The things I like to do, that really bring me joy, are not what most people would call a career track.  I may never have a career in the sense that J has a career, but that doesn't mean I haven't done something with myself.   Eileen wrote about how what you do for money doesn't have to be what defines you.  It's great if it does, and defines you in a good way, but life isn't always work.

What I need to do is strengthen my non-"work" skills, so the after-work sphere of my life grows larger and more important.  People may not respect the things I like to do (sewing, sculpting) as real work, but I need to.  And I don't think I've been truly respecting my talents.

It's easier said than done, to not give credit to what others think of you.  But starting this summer, I'm going to try to not care.

Eat it, haters.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Guest Post: Getting a job immediately, regretting it immediately

Fargo Kidder* is a graduate student, crafter, blogger, and dog lover.

Last time I wrote a post for SCOATS, I focused on my desire to take the plunge and become a creative entrepreneur. Two recent posts  by "a" made me realize I have something else the readers of this blog might be interested in: what happened to me after I followed my spouse.

I was a ball of nerves as my husband and I prepared to move for his job. Don't get me wrong, there were things about the job I had at the time that I was psyched to leave behind. I knew I'd miss my friends, but I had the consolation of knowing we were moving just a 5-hour drive from where we used to live. I really can go back and visit any time. Because we moved to a fun city, we've already got almost a dozen friends coming to visit us this summer. It's nice, too, that my husband's new job allows us to live in a bigger, multi-bed and bathroom apartment that can accommodate company, unlike our old 650-square-foot house. After living in our new city for six weeks, I can say I miss my friends, but it's not so bad.

So the house and friends situations are great, but the work situation is not. My husband will start his new job in a few weeks, and I've been working at mine for just over a month. It was a good thing we opted to move in early May, despite his job not starting until July because I hit what some would consider the traveling spouse jackpot (I discussed this a bit in my previous post, but I'll touch on it again). I landed a job that is just like my old job. It's full time, started six days after we moved, and hey, it pays better. Here's the rub. I know taking this job was absolutely the wrong choice. At the time I got the job offer, I had already planned to work an internship part time while taking my remaining courses online. I would have finished my degree in August and have been able to apply for jobs with a couple years of experience from my old job, as well as no real lapse in employment due to working an internship and going to school full time online. 

Not the guest blogger, but the face says it all.
I keep asking myself "what was I thinking" when I'm on a train commuting to my job in an overly privileged, whitewashed suburb. It's to the point that I've started making myself list five positive things about my situation as I walk from my train stop in to work every day. This only leads me to listing twenty things about how pathetic I feel before stress eating the free candy in my ridiculous staff lounge. So what was I thinking when I applied for, interviewed twice for, changed my whole personal grad school plan for, and accepted this job? I was scared, god dammit! This job let me feel, to a certain extent, that I was still in control of my situation. That I wasn't another early twenty-something, unemployed loser. It justified my following my husband. My husband will always make more money than I do. Between getting married (and no one respecting my choice not to change my name), following my husband, and knowing my lifestyle will always be dependent on his paycheck, I think I needed these two months before his new job starts to feel like I could take care of us. Knowing that I was the sole bread winner, even just for a little while, is something I think I'll always be able to cling to when people call me Mrs. Wronglastname instead of Ms. Me. Or when I'm the armequin (silent mannequin on my husband's arm) at some terrible event that we "should" go to, it doesn't matter because I know that I can, and did, take care of us for two months after we moved. 

Interesting. I didn't realize til I wrote these thoughts down that the last two months will mean a lot to me long term. Maybe taking this job was the right choice at the time. I maintain, however, that I will GTFO the burbs asap. I will find a way to be a creative entrepreneur.

Today, I was originally intending to explore how I can leave this job without bruising my professional reputation too much. I've been there six weeks, and I plan on staying through September, for a total of three months. I've been keeping my eye on some job boards since I feel like it will be easier to leave this job if I had the excuse of "well, I wasn't feeling like this was a good fit and I got this other offer." But then I'll be jumping right into ANOTHER job. Honestly, I feel like I need a break. I have been triple-dipping my life in the part-time/online grad school, full time job, and blogging buckets for too long. My personal life suffers. I'm supposed to lose twenty pounds for my health this summer, and I don't know how to do that while working this much. It's hard to trust my perception of how I feel about anything when I'm this swamped. UGH. What to do?


*Ha! Still with that terrible pseudonym. I crack me up.

Trailing/Traveling/Accompanying Spouse Link Round-up

Here are some new blogs I've found:

Way Off Base: military spouse blog, many expat stories

Tales of an Accidental Trailing Spouse: expat blog

The Trailing Spouse Survey: a rather intensive study on 264 trailing spouses from 20 different country (nothing domestic, though)

The Fatidical* Question: This glimpse at an expat women's experience at cocktail parties with her husband pretty much proves that people are jerks.

Tokyo Blond: expat blog in Japan, no kids! (on purpose)

I'm still looking for those illusive blogs by women with no children moving domestically.  Ladies? Ladies?

*Word of the week! I had no idea what this meant (prophetic) and actually assumed it was misspelled.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

How to Read a Town

felt macarons from Little Fluff Stuff
How to read a town, how to research a city, how to figure out where to live-- it all depends on what language you're speaking.  For me, I speak walk-able, bike-able, old architecture, crafting community.  And affordable, but I'll maybe have to learn a new dialect.  Looking at a new town when you've never been to it is hard.  I have no idea what people did before the internet (guess I should ask my mom).  I'm going to share some of the tips I've figured out about judging a town's compatibility.

1.  Meet-up is a good place to start.  Smaller areas probably won't have a lot of entries, but a large city should yield up a group for just about anything (Southbay Goth Meet-up, LARPers, Raw food and board games night).  Pick your keywords and see what you find.  Now, I'm not sure how wide-spread meetup is, and it may be used more by some age groups than others.  Or maybe you don't even care about age groups.  Check it out.

Knitted cowl from Nisey Knits
2. Since this is at least 40% a craft blog, I chose to do some scouting through Using their Shop Local search, I found sellers from the area we're looking at.  Then, I sent a handful of friendly notes asking about the availability of craft supplies and whether there was much of a crafting community.  I got answers back almost immediately about stores to go to and offers of help once I get there.  That was probably the most positive thing that's happened so far.  I'd like to thank Little Fluff Stuff (pictured above), maukDesigns, Nisey Knits, and La Plume Ethere for helping me feel at home before it's even my home. I even got an invitation to knit with someone!

3.  Google Street View: I can never use this feature without thinking HOLY SHIT IT'S THE FUTURE.  I've used this to check out my childhood home (they cut down my damn tree!) and find bike-able roads.  Now, I can snail my way through entire neighborhoods.  Looking at things from above always make them look weird and clinical, but street view is nice. The absence of deciduous trees in California makes me sad, but using this I could see that there are plenty of leaves out there.  Through a freak occurrence, J wasn't able to rent a car for his trip, but he could use the street view maps to check out the sidewalks.

View Larger Map

4. Discussions from their forum often come to the top of my searches when thinking about moving/trailing.  It's a large enough website that you can almost always find someone moving from/to where you're going.  The design leaves much to be desired, but it is chock-full of facts. You won't laugh (you might cry, looking at housing prices) but you'll get some of the big answers.  This doesn't particularly give you the feel of a place, but gives more precise information about demographics/employment/industry than any Wikipedia article.

5. lets you know how much your city respects pedestrians and cyclists, which isn't important to everyone but it is to me.  And since it's hooked into Google Maps, you also get a list of cool places, by category, near the address.  For me, if all that pops up under coffee is Starbucks, I've hit a dud.

I hope this helps someone.  When J applied for jobs in Portland, I had more of an idea of what to expect. I'd been there and its reputation preceded it.  This part of California, though, boggled my mind.  And when you're feeling boggled, it's easy to focus on the bad stuff.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Start your trailers!

image from mormon mommy wars
I'm an hour away from driving J out to the airport.  Lots of talking, googling and reassuring has happened since my last explosive post, and I have to admit I reacted harshly.  The place we work isn't necessarily the place we live in California, where all the towns are close together and public transit exists.  So, I am not freaking out anymore*.

He'll fly into California today, interview tomorrow, and come back on Thursday after I get off work.  I took a vacation day today, mostly so I could be completely calm before and after he leaves.  It's been a lovely morning-- we slept in, had breakfast over the Daily Show and went to the farmers market.

Statistics often come from thin air, but I've read several places that moving ranks in the top three for most stressful events in a couple's life.  We're responding to the beginning of this process by getting closer.  I'm sure our friends think we're being jerks to disappear before we've even begun to move, but it's how we're coping. Staying in, reading, remembering why we chose to be together.

But listen to me-- it's just an interview.  I don't need to sell all my winter clothes just yet.

*Still hate palm trees.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Not one of those posts!

If anyone has been wondering why I haven't written in a week, it's because J has had two interviews with the same company in the past two weeks and things are moving.  But he doesn't want me to write about that stuff as much, because it felt bad the last time he didn't get a job, and the whole internet knew about it. I understand that.  Unfortunately what he's doing is pretty necessary for this blog to move along, so I've been feeling a little... clogged.  This is go time, the time I really need to write about this so the community I've been trying to build can help me along.

The prospect of moving is exciting, and FUCKING HORRIFYING.  Yes, I would like to move before the Fall semester starts (the busiest/worst/best part of my work year) but now I'm looking around my town saying, "Damn, I like it here", and researching towns where the jobs and thinking, "Damn, I like it here*".  I do like it here.

Powerless, that's what it feels like.  About to go somewhere where I don't know anyone and my only friend will always be gone and really tired when he comes home and it may be a suburb, and maybe I'll end up having kids only because there's nothing else for me there.  I've burst into tears four times today, and I swear I'm trying to find something positive.  I feel even more awful that I'm not jumping up and down.  I am happy about the opportunity, just not so jazzed about where it is.

He's flying to California for an interview next week.  If things go smoothly, we could be out of here by August.

*Here being here, now. Not there.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Oh here we go! A new word everybody! WINGSPOUSE(tm)

Alrighty, not only have a found a new term to replace our decrepit and roundly-hated trailing spouse, but it also offers a new direction! That is, no direction at all but to support your husband.  WINGSPOUSEe(tm)* is an executive help-meet, but who cares about concise vocabulary, when you don't need to worry about a pesky career anymore!
Can I be a wingspouse™ partner and still have a career?It’s possible to be employed outside of the home and still act like a wingspouse™ in some capacity. A few wingspouses are lucky enough to have a career that directly benefits the executive spouse. However, a true wingspouse™ is a full-time and equal partner to the executive. She enjoys being professionally challenged, but finds a separate career difficult because of executive career expectations, time demands, relocations, or family responsibilities. That’s just the nature of the beast. If this sounds like you, then you probably have the makings of a wingspouse.
Isn't WINGSPOUSE(tm) just another way of saying a woman's place is at her husband's side? Or the kitchen? Maybe I'm looking at this too harshly, but the solution here is not to find your own identity but to find a way to more successfully carve it out of his:
She enjoys the success of the executive’s career and actively participates in that success using her own unique set of skills.
Oy.  Over on the LA Times blog, one writer seems to think this is AWESOME (since when did married women not think being a good wife was important? Feminism doesn't mean marry a man just to torture him).
Wouldn't it be better for her spouse and children if she were to opt for a more traditional role — full-time wife, full-time mom, full-time writer of thank-you notes — a choice that continues to be embraced by many forces in our culture?
My head and my desk are having a party right now.  This is what I was talking about a few days about about not being able to surmount these ideas of traditional roles if I take one.  What also irks me is that it assumes a one-income household is possible for most people.

Good on her for making the website and trying to sell this idea, but WINGSPOUSE(tm) makes me want to WINGSPEW.

*It's all caps or go home. This website is crazy-pants.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Summer Drink of 2011: Golden Pheasant

It's hot! Damn hot! Real hot!  It's summertime in Arkansas and when people say it's like breathing through a wet rag they mean breathing through a hot wet rag.  We've got the AC on, but it's still hot in our old house.  When rubbing ice cubes on your wrists isn't enough, try a golden pheasant.

I don't usually go for complicated drinks, but my boss is a font of knowledge about ancient cocktails and when I heard her tell me about being underage and drinking golden pheasants, I listened.  She said, "Got gin?" And I said, "I have too much gin."  Well, here's a way to remedy that problem.  The recipe I concocted from several websites is this:

3 shots gin
3 shots fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup powdered sugar (confectioner's)
1 beaten egg

Mix all that up in an blender!  Don't get grossed out about the egg. Ok, get grossed out, that's ok. Take a shot of gin and continue.  Mix one shot of that concoction with as much cream soda as you see fit. Put some ice cubes in it.  You really have to taste this to believe it isn't nasty, and unbelievably light for summer.

My search for a new word trailed off

Image from
Yesterday, Diplopundit linked to my Trailer Trash post, sending a flurry of new folks my way (hello new folks!). It made me realize how hard it is to find a new word for something when the current one is in wide use.  I fall back on "trailing spouse" so often, just because I know people will know what I'm talking about.  And I'll admit I knew that if I stopped using "trailing spouse" altogether, no one new to these discussions would ever find this website.  So am I perpetuating it?

I wish the word "caboose" didn't sound silly when not used in reference to a train.  Because that's what we are, right?  Not the front end, but not dragging either. Attached, carrying half the weight, and pushing when needed.

Trailing makes me think of being a little sister and my older sister getting mad when I followed her around.  Or grades in school getting gradually lower, and falling behind.  Or following someone when they don't know it (like a private detective?).  The only positive thing I can think of is the trail left behind a comet:
Comet dust trails are the collections of large (greater than 0.1 mm) particles that closely follow a comet's orbit like the boxcars of a freight train (although trails are not physically bound together). Dust trails are the youngest meteoroid streams, and when they intersect the orbit of a planet they can create meteor showers. Some asteroids have been dynamically linked to meteor showers. However, dust trails have only been observed around comets. -
Hrm. Actually, that doesn't sound great either.  Though it does bring my train analogy into play.  Things that trail seem light or superfluous, without great consequence or presence:
An email from a colleague of my husband referred to his Trailing Spouse; you can imagine my reaction. When I told a friend about this, she asked if I were planning to wear Laura Ashley dresses and waft about, chiffon scarves floating in my wake. - La Douce Vie Suisse
I should change the name of my blog, completely.  I just need to leave bread crumbs so other women (like me, when I started this journey) can find there way here, and to other helpful places.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Who cares what people think? The people being crapped on!

My biggest problem I struggle with on this blog is identity.  Now, identity doesn't have to do with anything outside of myself, so my problem is that I personally do tie outside opinion in with how I view myself.  If I didn't, then I'd say "fuck all!" to convention and do my thing.  I just have this niggling desire to change perceptions.

As to the title, it's easy to say, "Just be yourself!" when who you are isn't questioned or judged by society at large.  Fargo Kidder*, from yesterday's guest post, wrote about how wanting to work from home and have a craft business is very tied to women who have children, and include that in their blogging.  It's assumed that a woman with her own business is being supported by a husband, or is doing it while she's taking care of kids.  There is nothing wrong with doing those things, and you don't need to hear it from me.  It's the assumption that galls me.

How is it possible not to stumble under the weight of assumptions?  What would happen if the weight was lifted?

I want to smash that assumption. I want to rend the connotations from the things I want to do that genders them female, that presupposes I can't do things on my own, that says they are less valuable than things a man does, that assumes working from home means you don't have a real job**.  I want to stand as an example of being just as independent, industrious and fucking awesome as men are assumed to be by default.  I want to live my live as a person, not a marked other. 

Problem is, one can't live her live a monolith, especially if no one's looking.  And all this shit I don't like isn't going to change in my lifetime, so I should probably do a little of what I wanna do and not care about what people think.  When I first started reading about feminism, I was so angry (as well a person should be) but it took me a while to  learn to temper my anger with the wrongs of the world with happiness of what's right, and that was a painful time.  You can only fight against bad stuff for so long if you don't take time for some good stuff.  You'll burn out.

I only have one life, and I need two.  One to smash through the glass ceiling, and another to enjoy the fresh air above it.

*I'm still gagging at how bad that pseudonym is. Never let me make them up for you.
**Why is everything we do have to be tied with being mothers?  Even if it has nothing to do with children? 

Monday, June 6, 2011

Guest Post: Did I mention..?

Fargo Kidder* is a graduate student, crafter, blogger, and dog lover.

Let me start off by saying that I am a very lucky woman. In the past year, I've gotten married, moved to a huge city, my husband has landed a high-paying job, and I, the following spouse, even landed a job that started before my husband's. The job is even one I'm uniquely qualified for - literally, it's my old job, but in a new environment. The thing is, I wasn't happy doing my old job. I was good at it, but unhappy. I thought moving to a new organization while still doing something I enjoyed would alleviate this unfulfilled feeling I'm experiencing. I am starting to think that the organization wasn't the problem.

In theory, I should be psyched that my husband completing his graduate coursework (he's ABD at this point) dovetailed with the start date of his new job and now, my new job. Not psyched, ecstatic! And I'm not. I tend to spread myself too thin, which I've been trying to work on. Sometimes that doesn't always work out...

Did I mention I'm also working on MY master's degree? Luckily my program is flexible and most courses can be taken online. We found out in December we'd be moving this summer, so I secured a summer internship for credit. When I landed my full time job a few months later, I opted to do the internship in addition to working 40 hours a week. I figured it would be easier and more fun to work six days a week than work 5 plus take an online class. I've done that before just fine, but the internship sounds more interesting and practical.

Not the author, but close enough. Pic from Ashleeappendicitus
Did I mention I also have a blog? I won't linky link because I'm guesting anonymously today, but it's about crafts. I've been blogging there for coming up on a year, and it's become one of my favorite things to work on. I didn't realize until making hundreds of crafts for my wedding that crafting is what I really love to do. It's not just an outlet for anxiety for me like it once was. I find myself feeling so strongly about my work that I regularly forgo sleep to work on it, as well as my blog. The longer I'm blogging, the more I'm realizing that I want to dedicate more time to it. But I can't commute to a full time job and make that happen. I feel like I'm missing opportunities with crafting every second at work, and then I'll sneak a second or two to post something or approve comments, and I feel like I'm letting my paid job down.

Did I mention how lucky my husband and I are? My husband somehow landed a job in finance, with all of the perks (money, insurance, etc.) therein. We don't want kids, plus we can already afford for me not to work at all. So why am I so worried about all of this? I simultaneously feel like the small window that has opened for me to develop a business is only going to be open for a short while. If I don't do this now when the conditions are right, then will I ever? My husband is supportive. He knows, probably better than I do, that I can make myself work 40 hours a week from home.

Kids and crafts. A lot of people I know who craft for a living appear to be able to justify it because they're also stay-at-home-moms. Half of their blog posts are about the hat they made their kids, how their kids are napping so they had time to post, how great their kids' contributions are to their work. I don't want kids, and I think it's impressive that these women can run a business plus to do the kids thing at the same time. Now I'm not saying I feel like getting knocked up will justify my craft business, but I think it would be easier for me to say to people, "I am a mom, but I also make a living through my Etsy shop."

The realistic plan I can envision in my head. I finish my master's degree in December. Leading up to that, I can look for part-time employment. With any luck, I'd like to be able to leave my current job in December, work a lower stress part time job, and run my business part time. That way, I can feel my safety net, but still have time to devote to the pursuit I want to eventually do full time.

But what if I'm wrong... 

*Name changed to protect the innocent-- and unfortunately she let me pick the pseudonym.

For most posts like this, see The Scale of Opportunity and Guest Post: Freeze Dried.  If you'd like a platform to talk about your experience moving with a significant other, please contact me.


I'm posting this a little late, but J and I had our 4th anniversary last month.  I am an asshole-- things were crazy, money was tight, so I didn't get him anything (that particular month was graduation and birthday also) but a sweet night out.  He, on the other hand, got me a gift that that knocked my socks off.

Each year, we've tried to get each other gifts according to the traditional UK, US or modern US custom.  This year was linen, silk, flower, fruit or appliances.  J got me a rotary cutter (cuts linen! silk! is an appliance!) and a little sprig of artificial flowers from Joann, every single gift choice in one box.  Really, how could I have a better guy?

Photo by J's dad

Friday, June 3, 2011

Summer Book Club: The Wind Done Gone

I got a copy of The Wind Done Gone by Alice Randall and am a ways into it.  This is a re-telling of Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind.  I haven't read this book, so it's hard to make some of the connections.  Randall's main character Cynara, or Cindy, or Cinnamon was born a slave to the character of Mammy (same in the book and the film).  The books appears to take place after the war, after the death of Scarlett and Rhett's daughter, and after Reconstruction.  The characters most of us know by name are given pseudonyms, and it takes a little while to get it all straight. Mammy is Mammy, Rhett is R., Scarlett is Other.  I still have not made connections between some characters in the book and the ones I know from the film, and I'm not sure if that's because I haven't read Mitchell's novel.

[I now see I could easily figure it out from the wikipedia entry, but now I feel lazy.]

The main character does not have a parallel in Mitchell's novel.  There is no point you can attach her to to fill out her character.  She is one of the many unnamed children that may have gone hungry when their mothers were separated from them, to wet-nurse for whites' children.  Through her eyes we see the other side of Tara that the film's romanticized and racist version doesn't show.

This isn't just a retelling, but goes on with the story after reconstruction.  You see Cynara, once a slave of Tara, in her own house in an Atlanta neighborhood, visited often by her lover, R.  The book so far deals with the relationship between Cynara and her mother, Mammy.  How does Other (Scarlett) fit into this?  She and Cynara have the same father, and are thus half-sisters.  Mammy is Other's caretaker, and her relationship with Other is what hurts Cynara the most.  The rivalry between Cynara and Scarlett has little to do with the fact they share a lover-- it's mother's love that is held so dear.

I'm looking forward to finishing this book, which is a pretty fast read.  It's very lyrical and wandering, to the point that I didn't care that I had no idea who the characters were yet, because it was just so beautiful to read.

Want to join the Summer Book Club?  Scoot on over to Freeze Dried and check it out.

Blogs talkin' about The Wind Done Gone:
Racialicious  *  Race Matters *  Dar Kush  * Everything and Nothing

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Trailing Spouses, Military Wives and Righteous Indignation

Ask a Manager answered a question from a military spouse today that was VERY pertinent to my interests:

I will be giving my (two week) notice at my job this Friday.  I’m not leaving to take another job.  I’m leaving because the Army is moving us ….. again.  Unfortunately, in order to get the job, I had to fib and tell the bosses that we’d be staying in the area (and would eventually retire here) and I think that’s one of the reasons why they hired me — I said I was sticking around.  Many employers will not hire military spouses if they think they are leaving soon, and the reality is that I usually have to “fib” about how long we’re staying in order to get any job.
Oy! Sound familiar?  This was my go-to excuse for not trying to get out of my current work situation, not wanting to start a job when I knew we might move.  You know who "might" move? Anyone!  I wasted years not letting myself move on, and that totally sucks.  I wish I knew if this lady had a blog, because I'd read the hell out of it.

The commenters on the post chastise her for her "fibbing" and tell her she's an out-right liar.  This got my hackles up immediately.  She can tell the truth and hope she's not dropped for the possibility she may move, she can omit what her spouse does for a living, or she can just stop living her life completely until she drops dead and finally "commits" to a burial plot.

When I asked my HR department whether or not I should tell my boss about J's graduation, we got into a talk about the possibility of relocation if he gets a good job.  I said that was definitely a possibility, but since I have no control over his job prospects, it's hardly fair to judge me for it.  One of the HR crazies even suggested that I let them know about his progress as soon as he gets an interview!  It's like I'd grown a third arm or something, and that third arm was looking for a new job.  Candace at Army Wives Lives answered a similar question to the one above, much more articulately:
Most states do not specifically grant military spouses protection from employment discrimination.  However, you may not discriminate against someone based on marital status.  An employer making inquiries about your marriage for any purpose is simply inappropriate.  They also cannot ask if you are planning to get pregnant and take maternity leave in the near future.
Yes, I do sort of have control over where he gets a job (once he gets an offer) and we are a unit.  I'm stuck to/with him for life, and I'm glad of that, but we are two different people.  I do not want to be thought of in terms of him when looking for a job.  It's enough to pull up roots and move somewhere for someone else, so I found it completely insulting that the commenters at Ask a Manager wouldn't even give her the concession of not offering up conjecture in an interview.

I see it as a bias similar to avoiding women because maybe someday they'll get pregnant and have to take time off.  Planning for the future is a part of being a manager, but there are some assumptions that shouldn't be made, for the dignity of your employee.

So, now I need to go find army spouse blogs, because that is a corner of the internet I never even thought to look in!  If anyone knows a good one, please let me know in the comments.  I'm in a lather right now and will probably have to come back to this later to make it more succinct.