April – Month of the Military Child

Family separation due to deployment can be a stressful time for children which is why April is month of the military child. It is important to let your child communicate their feelings through their behavior as it is not unusual to show signs of anger, sadness, or be withdrawal during deployment or when a parent returns. To provide your child with a secure base and reduce stress, here are a few things to try:

  • Offer extra hugs, kisses, and cuddles. You and your child will both feel better.
  • Keep reminders of mom or dad around during separation. Things like a photo book or journal are great ways to build connectedness between the separated parent and child.
  • Stick to daily routines as best as you can. An unpredictable schedule can cause unnecessary stress.
  • Repeat the message that mommy or daddy (whoever is gone) loves you very much!
  • Expect that your child will exhibit challenging behaviors. Create reasonable boundaries and stick to them.
  • Keep your sense of humor and stay positive, children pick up on your emotions more than you know!
  • Children are incredibly resilient, but they need your help to reinforce these traits and build a strong base!

    Deployment Tips for Parents

    How Deployment Stress Affects Families