Deployments and separations can be tough on relationships. But there are steps you and your partner can take and resources you can tap to minimize the strain and grow together through your times apart — as a couple and as a family.

The following tips and resources can help your relationship stay deployment strong.

Keep talking

Take time to talk about the separation or deployment as soon as you know it’s happening. Honest conversation can make the time you have together before the upcoming separation less stressful. Make a plan for how you will keep in touch during your time apart — through phone calls, online communication and care packages. Each family is different. Do whatever works best for you, your partner and your family.

If you’re having trouble communicating, either with each other or with children, check out Military OneSource Building Healthy Relationships specialty consultations. These sessions offer coaching and problem-solving tools tailored specifically for different types of relationships — couples, parent-child, blended family, staying connected while away and more.

The following resources offer additional information about relationship support:

Take care of yourselves

One of the most important things for everyone to do during deployments and separations is to take care of themselves. Staying healthy, sticking to routines and connecting with friends or the military community can help everyone build resilience during time apart.

Use the following resources for more information about taking care of yourself during deployment:

Expect an adjustment period once you’re reunited

Reunion after a deployment or separation is often a wonderful time, but it can also be full of strong emotions. Readjusting to life together can take some time and effort. Try to be patient, focus on the positive and ask for help when you need it.

These resources provide helpful information on how to make reunion and reintegration easier for everyone:

Reach out if you need support

If you have questions about relationships — during deployment or any other time — contact your installation Military and Family Support Center. Military OneSource consultants are also available 24/7 to answer questions and connect you with the resources you need to thrive. Call 800-342-9647, use OCONUS calling options or start a live chat.