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Jo's Wedding PictureHi, my name’s Jo. You might know me from my blog, Jo, My Gosh! (www.jomygosh.com), where I’ve written for almost three years about my deployment, being a fiancé, and my journey as a Navy wife. I’m keeping my blog running over there, but I’m so excited to partner with Military OneClick for this brand new column: The Millennial Military Spouse.

The Pew Research Center defines the Millennial Generation as those who were born between 1981 and 2000. We’re the “most ethnically and racially diverse cohort of youth in the nation’s history” and we see technology as something that’s part of our daily lives rather than something extra, astonishing, or confusing. We trust institutions more than our older siblings and parents do. We’re the largest generation born since the Baby Boomers.

This is who we are, too: We’re the Nickelodeon generation who watched Doug and Are You Afraid of the Dark? We’re the last ones who will remember what dial-up sounded like and what life before wi-fi was like. Most of us have grandparents who are part of the Greatest Generation and parents who remember the Vietnam War. We played Oregon Trail and had Trapper Keepers with Lisa Frank and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle designs. September 11th was a defining moment for us and the majority of us can remember exactly where we were—in school—when we heard the news. We came of age with two wars hitting the news and the Great Recession bearing down on us.

And we’re now the average military spouse.

But we’re not so “average.” We’ve only ever known a military lifestyle where multiple, long deployments are the norm. Where the division between the civilian and military worlds seem light years apart. We are male and female. We are professionals. We are college students. We have master’s degrees. We are gay and straight, bisexual and transgendered. Some of us are parents. Some are veterans ourselves. Some of us are from military families, others of us are learning as we go. We are every shade of skin color under the sun. We are liberal and conservative and independent and apolitical. Some of us are deeply religious while others aren’t. We keep in touch with friends PCS after PCS with social media. We celebrate birthdays and milestones from Skype.

We are not a monolith—we have such diversity in our journeys and who we are.

That’s why I’m writing this new column, The Millennial Military Spouse. Our stories need to be told and we need to be the ones telling them. Of course, if you’re not a Millennial, you’re more than welcome to come along for the ride—and I encourage you to!

Every week, I’ll post a new article that pertains directly to the military lifestyle. We’ll celebrate Millennial milspouses who are kicking butt and taking names in their chosen profession—and I’ll share the keys to their success with you.  We’ll chat about relationship issues. I’ll share resources and information to help hurdle obstacles. We’ll keep the conversation going about careers and educational topics.

And of course, I’ll always want to hear from you! This is your story too—not just mine. I want to represent you and celebrate your triumphs. That’s why my email is always open. Shoot me an email, tell me about yourself or ask a question!

I can’t wait to introduce you to Rachael Kraft next week. She’s a graphic designer and researcher who created a portable career on her own. And it’s a thriving, growing business. We’ll talk about how she did it—and how, if you’re interested, you can too.

Stay tuned—it’s just getting interesting!

 

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