Have you ever wondered how military dads are any different from their civilian counterparts? One given fact is that they may not always be around for special moments, holidays, birthdays, you name it. This isn’t by choice though. Unfortunately, duty to country comes before anything else, even family. 

Just like some moms are innately born with mothering skills while others have a learning curve, the same can be said for dads. Some are just made for the role of being a dad where others need a little more training. Luckily, that’s where Uncle Sam can play a big part. Believe it or not, serving in the military teaches skills that can prepare men for the journey of fatherhood. 

How does the military lifestyle and training received during time in service equip men to become fathers? Well, besides being able to sleep anywhere in any condition, there are some real competencies that military service can build.

Check out these top five skills the military imparts into service members that can make them great fathers.

1-Responsibility-Not only are service members responsible for themselves but oftentimes, they have a responsibility to others too. This is an essential skill as a parent. 

2-Flexibility-As I am sure you are already aware, things rapidly change in the military lifestyle. Military personnel have to remain flexible in order to quickly adapt to rapid change. This is an excellent skill to have as a dad. When you have an infant, there isn’t always a schedule and your life is dictated by this little human, which can also rapidly change.

3-Adaptability-Due to the rapidly changing environment of the military, adaptability is a must. Service members must be able to adapt to any and all situations, almost robotically, without thinking. This gives most of them quick reaction times too. Both of these things can be a huge plus in parenting. 

4-Resilience-The military ingrains the motto “figure it out” into those serving. This is not only so that they can learn and build readiness for the mission, but also so they can bounce back when things get tough. These ingredients for resilience are also needed as a father. Babies are not all the same and require many “figure it out” moments in addition to bouncing back from no sleep and constant chaos.

5-Leadership-Serving in the military trains those serving to become leaders. In fact, in order to be promoted from one level to the next, it is oftentimes necessary to pass a leadership course first. Leadership is necessary in fatherhood. When the mother is recovering after childbirth, dad has to step in, lead, and take care of his family. There are also major decisions that have to be made for a child in terms of care, feeding, parenting, and raising, which takes leadership. 

What has the military taught you or your spouse that you believe was good preparation for fatherhood?

© Strength 4 Spouses LLC, 2020.

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