If you thought being someone’s wife changes your life, then try being an Army officer’s wife. It’s like your life has been finely chopped, then boiled and mashed into an entirely new form of existence. And for a “shudh desi civilian” like me, this sudden change can be a little unsettling.
Many officers marry daughters of fauji, fondly called SODA (Serving Officers’ Daughters Association) as those girls have the advantage of being better acclimatised to life in this organisation. They have all seen their mothers and other aunties go through the drill and so are better prepared for it.
So her is a list of 10 Commandments which might prove helpful if you are an officer’s newlywed. A very senior officer posted in IMA (Indian Military Academy) in Dehradun is said to have compiled it, along with his wife.
Please understand the capabilities of your husband. His personality is a sum total of “God given talent and acquired traits”. Do not push him beyond that limit.
When your husband comes home after a long day’s work, do not overload him with domestic problems. Find another suitable opportunity to do that.
When you as Commanding Officer/senior officer’s wife create a happy and healthy environment in the unit, formation or establishment, your husband’s problems will be halved.
Learn to live with your senior officers’ wife. Each person has her own characteristics. Also learn to be magnanimous with your younger ladies. A big heart is an essential prerequisite for earning goodwill.
Communicate with, rather than talk behind the back of your senior officer’s wife.
As a Commanding Officer’s wife, avoid playing favourites.
Do not live in a ‘self-siege’ syndrome, i.e., by harbouring a perception centred around the choking feeling that ‘I am besieged from all directions.’
Do not create tensions when you visit a lower unit, formation or establishment. Remember your days in the unit as a young lady.
Learn to take supersession with grace. Destiny has a lot to do with it. We all will be superseded someday in life.
Always carry a smile on your face and display a warm heart. Avoid a stiff necked approach. A hug or a touch from a senior lady can convey a lot to the younger lady.