How to Stay Safe When Your Soldier is Deployed
Being deployed is hard on everyone involved. When emotions are high, it can sometimes be difficult to think about other things, for example, your safety. As much as you don’t want to think about it, your safety could be at greater risk when your significant other is away. Aside from installing a home alarm system, below is a list of safety tips to consider when you are holding down the fort alone.
Don’t talk to strangers
Yep, this rule applies to you too. Whether you are at the grocery store, the mall, or talking to someone on the phone, no one needs to know that your significant other has been deployed and will be gone awhile. It is better to keep this information to yourself. The less people know, the better. It makes you less of a target for predators looking to take advantage of single-person homes.
Stay away from social media
It is fine to post a picture here or there, but it is a bad idea to post that your soldier has been deployed. Most people know to avoid posting their vacation dates on social sites, the same is true for when you are going to be alone for several months. The less the public knows about your home-life and status, the better.
Keep up appearances
If your serviceman always keeps a pair of boots or shoes outside the front door, then keep them there. But, make sure to move them around occasionally. This is also important for vehicles. Drive your deployed soldier’s car or leave it in the driveway. Don’t give anyone watching your house a reason to think you are alone.
It is likely a good idea to mix up your daily routines. This doesn’t have to be drastic, but small changes are encouraged. Again, the reason to do this is to seem unpredictable. If anyone were attempting to target you or your household, you do not want to make yourself an easy target by giving them a perfect, predictable window of opportunity.
Beware of dog
Even if you don’t own a dog, you can make it appear like you do. Putting a few water bowls here and there around the yard or on the porch can help to deter strangers trying to break in or seek out an easy target. Beware of dog signs are also a great idea for backdoors and fences.
Hide your hide-away
Keeping a key outside may be convenient for your family, but it is also convenient for uninvited guests. It is best to bring your spare key inside the house when your significant other is away. There is no reason to tempt potential criminals with an easy way to get into your house.
There are dozens of preventative measures to increase your personal and home safety while your serviceman is away. The basic rule of thumb is to use common sense. Sadly, there are predators that specifically target military families. Don’t fall victim to a scam or become an easy target. Keep yourself and your information protected. Be aware of your surroundings and don’t hesitate to contact the authorities if anything seems off. Just like at the airport; if you see something, say something. This will keep you and your family safe until your family is reunited.
Written by Megan Hammons