Season 1, Episode 2

Transition as a GeoBachelor - A Spouse's Perspective
with Lizann Lightfoot
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Meet our Guest: 

Meet Lizann Lightfoot and learn about transition as a geobachelor from a spouse’s perspective. Lizann is a 15 year military spouse, a mom of 5 kids, and a published author. She writes and speaks to encourage and uplift the community of military spouses and loved ones.


Show Notes:
In this episode, Lizann Lightfoot joins Jen to share her story of choosing to do a transition with a service member who is geographically separated during transition. Lizann and her family had anticipated that her husband would do his 20-year career and retire. However, when he was around 19 years, he was eligible for promotion, which meant an additional three years in the military, taking him to the 22-year mark. This decision impacted the family’s plans and led to doing his final tour as a geo-bachelor.
They purchased a house years in advance and rented it out until they were ready to occupy it themselves. This allowed them to financially plan for post-military retirement. However, being long-distance landlords and dealing with renters brought its own set of challenges. Lizann emphasizes that transitioning from military life to civilian life involves not just settling into a new home and school but also involves a loss of identity and major readjustments.
Finally, this episode discusses various resources available to military families, such as Hiring Our Heroes, a program that offers fully funded training and internship opportunities for veterans and spouses, and Veterati, a free mentorship program available to veterans and spouses. Lizann urges active-duty spouses to take advantage of these resources as they prepare to transition into civilian life.

Suddenly we were realizing that a reenlistment and a promotion meant at least three more years, which would take him to that 22-year mark. And that impacted the kids. It meant an extra move to another duty station we hadn't anticipated. It meant that instead of being completed with his military service before our oldest went into high school, that it would overlap with her high school for a year.

Lizann’s Top Transition Tip:

Everyone’s experience is a little bit different, but there will be some commonalities and some of that is that it’s going to be a time of change for the whole family. And I would definitely emphasize that it’s not just the service member going through this transition, but really the children, the spouse, everyone, to some extent. Even if you’ve already lived off base, even if you already have a non military affiliated job, and you’re thinking, oh, this is no big deal, we’re just changing our geographic location, it really is an identity change for the whole family. So I definitely encourage people to have those discussions. Be open with your spouse, with your children, let them voice things to you as well, and give them permission to feel a little bit lost or confused or frustrated during this time period. It’s okay to feel that.

Resources & Mentions from this Episode:

I think it was this huge stressor for him...he wanted his family to be settled, he wanted us to be taken care of and in a location that was stable and predictable.

Pride & Grit is a Trademark of Hinshaw Consulting  2018 © & Pride & Grit Consulting 2021© All rights reserved.

Pride & Grit is a Trademark of Hinshaw Consulting Group, Inc 2018© and Pride & Grit Consulting, LLC. 2022© All rights reserved.