Environmental Hazards

I’m 25 and have been in the Navy for about three years.

I first checked in to my command and was flown out to meet them in the midst of a deployment. I was excited, being my first deployment and all. Everyone preps you and gives you all these tips and advice. However, no one really talks about some “environmental hazards”.

Before you arrive on deployment, everyone there will already know who you are, because they have scoped out your Facebook and Instagram. You’ll get there, and you’ll instantly be fed to the sharks. Every man becomes a predator.

You will have your daily interactions and come home to a handful of friend requests, all from the men you just worked with. They will start talking to you and hitting on you, blowing your phone up with “hi/hey/what up” multiple times a day.

And you let it slide because of the fact you have to work with them for six months straight, and maybe they are “just friendly.”

Then the weekend comes, you get to go out and enjoy. You can dress up/dress down and drink. Everyone loves to drink.

They also love it as an excuse (in case things go south, you reject them, and it blows up in their face. Then they can say “they don’t remember” or “sorry I was drunk”).

You’ll be mingling with people you never thought you would. You get to talk to all these amazing people, coming from different walks of life. You’ll start talking to someone and hit it off, maybe choose to spend the night with them. WHICH IS TOTALLY FINE! IT’S YOUR BODY, YOUR CHOICE.

However, with the military, it’s a small community and word travels fast. People you haven’t even interacted with will know.

Your chain of command, they will hear the gossip, possibly judge you on your choices.

And you are now no longer a quest, to see who can sleep with you first. And if you’re easy enough to sleep with. Because you “showed” you are and someone already “claimed” you.

I’m using specific language for a reason.

You can own your sexuality, absolutely.

But know that the military is kind of behind on the times, or those that join choose to see it a certain way, because they will not respect it.

If you’re seen as “sexual,” you will be seen as easy, and be ran through like a revolving glass door, if you do not set limitations on who gets through.

In the military, the double standard absolutely exists.

If you don’t sleep with anyone and are job oriented, you are a shrewd.

If you sleep with one person or more, you’re a whore.

You can not play the game, because you are simply a pawn in theirs. It’s a brutal truth for us women in the military. And it sucks for sure.

However, I’m not saying the military is shitty and no place for a woman, DEFINITELY NOT SAYING THAT! It’s an honor to serve and do these things outside my comfort zone.

But know this is one of those “hazards”

 – Submitted Anonymously

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