Between active and reserve military personnel there are approximately 2.1 million servicemen and women in the US military. There are close to 22 million veterans. This may only be 7% of the population (active and former) but it is also seven percent of the population that endures quire a battle when they come home to their family as well.
Time with family (especially during deployment) comes at a premium. The various deployed men and women are sometimes supporting a family back home financially, but do not have daily contact or communication with them. Bad and non existent communication is one large factor for these families splitting apart. ‘Dear John’ letters are still very much a thing.
Just the other day a friend’s wife decided she was going to leave while he is on deployment, “because he is not home enough.” This is the spouse of an active duty Marine who is currently serving overseas. While this Marine has a wonderful support system in place outside of an impatient spouse, things will not come easy.
Veterans are no exception. Show them they have a support system even though they are no longer serving. There is lots of programs for spouses of military members but so often forgotten that these men and women are sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, as well as nieces and nephews. Reach out to your family members.
Speaking as a sister of a soldier, when my brother deployed overseas, he got may from the family on a regular basis. He was single, there was no girlfriend or wife back home. More military men and women need this same support system.
There are many adopt a soldier type programs but very few for veterans who are at home and isolated. If you know a veteran who is lonely, reach out. All it takes is a conversation.