My husband has been in the military for over a decade. We’ve made quite a few friends along the way in this military community. Some have decide retired. Some did their time and moved on from the military within a few years. Although my husband is currently active duty, I always wonder, what will happen to our family once the military chapter is over?
Even though I work and contribute to our family’s income, my husband’s steady income and in essence, his career, is the financial backbone for our family. Our biggest concern after military life is the financial aspect. Today’s economic conditions almost require two incomes to live a comfortable life. So after 20+ of working in aviation, is the job market going to accommodate his unique set of skills?
This was a question I asked many of our friends and colleagues. In a military career that is so highly specialized, will his skills and experience translate in the civilian world?
It turns out it does.
One of our friends who was in the same line of work as my husband found the he could go right back to working for the Department of Defense… as a contractor. He was essentially doing the same job that he was doing while active duty but this time, his hours were finite, he didn’t have to deploy, and he didn’t have to wear a uniform or salute anybody.
He said it wasn’t easy but it’s possible. When he separated from the military, he had to create a resume, buy a suit, and network for the first time in his adult life. He had to go on interviews and translate his expertise to civilians who had no military affiliation whatsoever. Some of his potential bosses were younger than he was.
That was just the job hunt.
His personal life also changed drastically. Before he found that job, he had gone from a comfortable steady income to one that was a fraction of what he previously made. His family life grew some tension due to the financial constraints. His fair routine life was now full of uncertainty.
But he persevered. I asked how he did it.
He said “Support… support from my family, my friends, and some awesome organizations out there who actually help veterans”.
It turns out that through his networking, he found a job networking group for veterans. Then, he found a fellow veteran that could help him with resume writing and job prep. Then they told him about another veteran who works in HR in his local area. He said it was “Veterans taking care of their own.” Our friend is now gainfully employed and enjoying his life after the military. He’s doing the same job when he was active duty, but there’s a little less pressure this time around.
The turning point he says, was simply asking for help.
He said, “When you’re Active Duty, and you’re in trouble, you ask for help, and you can get it. It should go the same for veterans.”
After the boots are put away, veterans should get the support they have earned after all of their sacrifice. Organizations like Disabled American Veterans (you might have heard of them as DAV), are dedicated to celebrate the big or small victories for military veterans. DAV is a nonprofit organization that is on a mission to help veterans succeed after military service and get the benefits they were promised.
You can watch other stories of Victories for Veterans Here
DAV helps one million veterans of all generations in lifechanging ways EVERY YEAR. Visit DAV.org to learn more
Do you know a veteran? What has been their victory? What are other ways we can help?
DAV (Disabled American Veterans) is a non-profit organization that is on a mission to help America’s veterans achieve more victories. To learn more about DAV, visit dav.org.
Photo c/o US Navy
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of DAV. The opinions and text are all mine. While I am proud to support DAV and their mission, I have not been a beneficiary of DAV services.