Parenting Through Deployment - The Essentials

Your head's wrapped around the whole deployment thing. You know what you need to do, you've planned your deployment, and you're ready — or at least you're getting there. But deployment preparation has an extra, important step when you're a parent — preparing your children for each phase of the deployment cycle (before deployment, deployment and after deployment).

There may not be a "right" way to prepare kids for a deployment, but you can find the method that's just right for your kids here:

Preparing for deployment as a parent

Put your textbooks away. There's really no by-the-book way to prepare your child for the separation that comes with deployment. Preparing your children for a military deployment will take parental instinct, communication and planning. We offer some strategies to get started.

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Having a baby when deployed

Birth doesn't wait for deployment to end. Whether you are the spouse of a deployed service member who has just given birth or a service member away from the magical moment, you still can be connected to each other and experience the delivery. Military OneSource provides strategies so you can stay connected to your growing family.

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Helping kids deal with deployment

A deployment can bring out strong emotions in family members and cause stress and anxiety, especially in children. By understanding how preschool and school-age children react during deployments and by preparing ahead of time for this big change, you can make sure each phase of the deployment is successful. Check out steps to create your own deployment plan and tips for supporting your kids through each phase of the deployment cycle.

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Helping families transition when deployment ends

Reunion after deployment can cause mixed emotions. While it is often an exciting time, some stress also is normal. Whether this is your family's first or fifth reunion, each one is different and the change can be difficult. Be patient with yourself, your spouse and your kids, and don't be afraid to ask for help.

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