There’s nothing like having healthy, loving, supportive sisterhoods between women, especially Black women, who might find it difficult to meet and bond with others while moving all over the world.
In 2009, I was living in an unfamiliar place without family or friends nearby, and I really longed for a support system. After being married to a Navy man for only three years at that time, it was difficult for me to adjust to the military lifestyle. I didn’t want to hang out with just ANYONE, because that wasn’t good for my spirit. I desired to have friendships with women who could relate to some of my cultural challenges, aspirations and my journey as a military wife.
Seven more years passed, and I noticed that Black women weren’t always privy to information regarding particular events, opportunities and resources if we weren’t in specific “circles” or “communities.” So, I created the Facebook group “Black Military Wives (B.M.W.).” Thanks to B.M.W., not only were women connecting due to shared experieces as milspouses, but we were also bonding over similar cultural challenges and celebrations! Things were changing for me, as my I met more women who were like me! Yep, we were meeting in person and encouraging one another within our Facebook group.
Now, when one of us overhear information that is beneficial to all spouses or if she is in the “right” social settings to gather resources, that knowledge is being passed onto to other Black Military Wives via our group. Instead of being unaware of certain events or opportunities, we now have the option to be exposed to some amazing experiences.
Connections are being established between some amazing women who are stationed in places like Japan, Italy, England, and all over the United States of America. These women are having meet-ups, sharing resources, recommending hair products/stylists, being emotionally supportive to each other, engaging in thought-provoking dialogues, promoting their businesses, and are keeping us informed on military policies that can affect all of us!
A while back, a very gracious member of B.M.W. posted about the Military Spouse of the Year (MSOY) event, and invited B.M.W. members to attend. I jumped at the opportunity! The MSOY conference is rather prestigious–some of these women attend press conferences and are invited to The White House. Yes, The White House! Yet, many of us (Black women) were unaware of the annual affair, until it was posted in the B.M.W. Facebook group. During the MSOY event, the lack of diversity was painfully obvious; there were only five Black women at the luncheon, out of 250 spouses (very few were men or non-White). Although other groups do not use ethnicity in the titles of their group gatherings, the actual reflection of the group says it all…Black women are quite scarce at such elite affairs. Thanks to the members of B.M.W., we might be able to lessen such feelings of isolation by sharing information about various events while creating a supportive, encouraging, and trusting environment. In a nutshell–a big nutshell–this is the mission of Black Military Wives 💜.