Top 10 Questions About Military OneSource Specialty Consultations

American Flag

Life can throw you a curveball sometimes, whether it’s taking care of your wounded warrior, finding a caring assisted living community for your mom or getting your fitness training back on track. Specialty consultations give you the chance to talk with a trained professional to help solve your problem.

Get the answers

Here are the top 10 questions you may have about Military OneSource specialty consultations:

  1. What is a specialty consultation? It’s a session where you can talk with a specialist online or over the phone.
  2. What can I talk about during my consultation? You can discuss wounded warriors, special needs, adult and elder care, peer-to-peer, education, adoption, and health and wellness.
  3. How can I set up a consultation? Call Military OneSource at 800-342-9647 to schedule an appointment.
  4. As a spouse, how can a specialty consultation help me with moving or transitioning? Spouse relocation and transition specialty consultants can help create an individualized action plan and identify resources that may include information on housing, child care, education, employment, health and wellness coaching, non-medical counseling services and more. The consultation allows the spouse to have an ongoing relationship with a specific consultant, with regular touch-bases and follow-ups scheduled.
  5. How can Military OneSource help me if I’m a wounded warrior or caring for a wounded warrior? Wounded warriors or the family of a wounded warrior can get immediate help with issues related to health care, facilities or benefits. Specialty consultants work with the services’ wounded warrior programs and the Department of Veterans Affairs to make sure you get what you need quickly.
  6. What kind of help can I get for special needs and adult and elder care? A specially-trained consultant will assess your family’s needs and answer your questions about education, finances, support groups, effects on other family members and more. Whether you’re concerned about the special education cycle or finding adult day care for an older loved one, Military OneSource consultants can help.
  7. What can I expect from a peer-to-peer specialty consultation? Peer consultants can connect with you on a personal level through their shared experience as a service member or military spouse. You can have a relaxed conversation about the challenges of military life, such as deployments or frequent relocation.
  8. What help can I get with education? Education consultants can help with college admissions, financial aid applications, tutoring and more. Spouse Education and Career Opportunities also provides high-quality education and career services, resources, guidance and consultations for military spouses.
  9. How can a specialty consultation help me with adoption? Adoption consultants are trained and experienced in handling adoption-related issues and can help you resolve all your questions and concerns about the adoption process.
  10. How can a specialty consultation help me with health and wellness? Military OneSource’s free health and wellness coaching can help you improve your health and overall well-being. You can work with a coach to focus on weight management, fitness and nutrition, stress management, life transitions and more.
Find out what counseling options are available to you and your family.

Military Spouse Preference for Department of Defense Employment

Woman hands on laptop typing

As part of its commitment to help military spouses build their careers and find meaningful employment, the Department of Defense offers a hiring preference to military spouses when they apply for Department of Defense jobs through USAJobs.

The Department of Defense Priority Placement Program, or PPP, has improved the process for military spouses to use their military spouse hiring preference, making your life easier and giving you more control over your job search. Now you can:

Interested in a federal job? SECO can help.

The Spouse Education and Career Opportunities program offers military spouses free career coaching that can help you navigate the federal hiring process.

  • Apply for positions directly through USAJobs, not through individual agency or installation HR departments.
  • Find Department of Defense positions alongside those from other federal agencies on USAJobs.
  • Apply for as many positions as you want; no more limitations to the number of applications, job categories.
  • You can use military spouse preference for one offer of permanent federal employment (including NAF and AAFES) per duty location.

These improvements to the hiring process give military spouses more control over their job search and freedom to make the right decisions for their careers and families. Check out our answers to some of your frequently asked questions about military spouse preference for federal employment.

What is military spouse preference? Does that mean I’m guaranteed a job?add
Who is eligible to apply for jobs designated for military spouse preference?add
How does a military spouse apply for jobs open to military spouse hiring preference?add
Does the new application-based system mean military spouses are losing any benefits of the PPP?add
What can a spouse do to increase his/her chances for success in obtaining a Department of Defense job?add
Is the military spouse preference different when applying for federal jobs on OCONUS installations?add

Use free military support services to find your next position

Most installations have a civilian personnel office or human resources office that can give you more information about military spouse preference. They can also:

  • Refer you to local job opportunities on the installation, with other federal agencies and in the local community;
  • Tell you what paperwork is required for certain positions; and
  • Help you create a resume and other job application materials.

Visit MilitaryINSTALLATIONS to find your installation’s civilian personnel office or human resources office. You can also take advantage of the Spouse Education and Career Opportunities program’s free career coaching services by calling Military OneSource at 800-342-9647 or the Military Spouse Employment Partnership to look for a job in the private sector with employers seeking military spouse employees.

Life As a Male Military Spouse

Military woman hugs her husband

As a male military spouse, you are part of a community that values you. While you and your wife may be comfortable with your role in the family, you have probably learned that not everyone understands your place in the community. By learning about what to expect in your role as a male military spouse, you can keep your marriage strong and manage your expectations so that the military community becomes your support.

What to expect when your spouse is in the military

Military spouses are predominately female. As a male military spouse, you face some of the following situations:

  • Other people assume you’re the service member. You may find yourself explaining to people over and over again that you’re a civilian and your spouse is a service member.
  • You may feel isolated. This is particularly true if you move to a new location where you don’t have family or friends. You may have little in common with the other spouses, who could be mostly women. You may have left your job or sources of social support behind.
  • You may feel uneasy because your spouse spends so much time with other men. If you feel anxious because most of your spouse’s unit is male, talk with your spouse or a professional counselor about your concerns before your feelings affect your marriage.
  • Your role in the marriage may clash with your identity as a male. Role reversals can be difficult for any couple and can be especially challenging in the military setting, which emphasizes traditional ideas of masculinity. You may find yourself being a stay-at-home parent.

Adjusting to being a male civilian spouse

The military is becoming more aware of the unique needs of male spouses, but the spouse support system is still primarily geared toward women. Don’t let this discourage you. Here are some ideas to help you adjust to military life as a male spouse:

  • Think of ways you’ve adjusted to new situations in the past. You’ve done it before, whether it was going to college, starting a job or getting married. Think about how you adjusted to those changes before.
  • Connect with people and organizations. Look for groups like clubs, civic groups, sports teams and faith-based groups to help build your support network and get involved with the community.
  • Take advantage of Morale, Welfare and Recreation activities, events and trips. They offer outdoor recreation opportunities, fitness classes, sports programs and a range of other classes and services designed to help you meet other people with similar interests.
  • Reach out to other couples like you and your spouse. It can help to be with someone who’s in the same situation as you.
  • Focus on your own career. Being a military spouse doesn’t mean you can’t have a career, too. The Spouse Education and Career Opportunities program offers access to the My Career Advancement Account Scholarship for eligible spouses, certified Career Counselors through Military OneSource, and more than 270 employers as part of the Military Spouse Employment Partnership.
  • Make time to do things you enjoy as a couple. Military life can be busy, and taking time together to do positive, fun things can easily get pushed to the back burner. Make the time and focus on enjoying yourselves, even if that means agreeing not to talk about certain issues during those times.
  • Talk openly as a couple. Keeping the lines of communication open with your spouse is vital to maintaining a strong relationship.

Getting support

Know when and where to get help if your marriage is starting to show signs of strain, or if you need help dealing with your stress. Call or see a good friend or family member that you feel comfortable talking with. You can also visit the chaplain on your installation, or call Military OneSource (800-342-9647) to talk to someone about your relationship or to find out about resources. If you are in crisis, you can contact the Military Crisis Line 24 hours a day (1-800-273-8255 and Press 1).

Even though most military spouses are female, you can still fit in and make military life a positive experience. There are plenty of opportunities, both on the installation and in the community, to enjoy the military lifestyle and become comfortable in your role.

Installation Employment Readiness Specialists: A Valuable Resource for You

Two people discuss handout during a job fair

While you can access certified career counselors through Military OneSource by calling 800-342-9647, you can also access face-to-care employment readiness specialists at most installations. They can help you with a wide range of employment-related areas through workshops, classes, small group instruction and one-on-one support. Employment readiness specialists provide many services at no charge, including assistance with:

  • Career exploration. You’ve got skills, but what can you do with them? Employment readiness specialists can help you understand how your skills, interests and goals align with career possibilities through career assessments, skill assessments, skill-building classes, and career counseling and coaching.
  • Education, training and licensing. Now you know where you want to be, but how do you get there? Employment readiness specialists can help you figure out what academic, licensing or credentialing requirements are needed for your dream job and help you find financial aid to go after them.
  • Employment readiness. You’ve got all the skills needed for the job, but how do you find it and get it? Employment readiness specialists can help improve your self-marketing skills through job strategies and support, job searches and social media etiquette, finding jobs with the federal government, resume writing, dressing for success and interview skills.
  • Career connections. Where do you find all those employers who want employees just like you? Employment readiness specialists can help you identify career connections that promote the hiring of military spouses. These include the Military Spouse Employment Partnership Career Portal, local and installation job fairs, online career networks, community partnerships and federal appointment authorities.
  • Referrals to other services. Are you job-search ready and busy juggling everything else that your search keeps taking a backseat? Employment readiness specialists can also provide you with referrals to other services supporting well-being, such as health and fitness, family life education and personal financial management services.

Locating an employment readiness specialist

Each service has its own employment readiness program, and while the names may vary from one service to the next, they all share the common goal of assisting military spouses in finding meaningful employment. The names of the program for each branch of service are:

  • Army – Employment Readiness Program
  • Marine Corps – Family Member Employment Assistance Program
  • Navy – Family Employment Readiness Program
  • Air Force – Employment Assistance Program

As a military spouse, you are welcome to visit any employment readiness office or Military and Family Support Center.

Your installation employment readiness specialist can provide you the tools, resources and personalized services you need for a successful job search. Let them help you find your next job or start your new career today.