Thursday, November 12, 2015

The Family Support Center

    We were stationed in D.C. where Alan was assigned to The Presidents Own, a group of airmen as elite as the name sounds. His pay ran about $700. per month (no COLA in those days), of which we paid $350. for a little roach-infested apartment for our family of 4. An aside: There was no available housing at Andrews AFB, which precipitated the apartment (2 women were murdered in the complex during our time there -- a story for another time). Alan had to get a 2nd job to make ends meet &, never having the same days off between the two, we rarely saw him. With only one vehicle, I was truly holed up in the apartment alone with two preschoolers for many months on end. 

    Finally, I'd had enough & arranged childcare & transportation so that I could volunteer at the Family Support Center (FSC) one afternoon a week. I answered the phone & spent many hours directing military families to base and community resources and helped with any number of issues for those who called. One day the group of officers' wives who were in charge of the FSC began planning the annual volunteer recognition dinner. I overheard them planning the menu, the speaker & finally the location of the event. The first two went fine. My ears perked up, however, when the discussion of the location went something like this: "We can't hold it at XXX because we don't think enlisted wives will know how to behave in such a place." 

    Being an enlisted's wife, I skipped the dinner & never went back to the Center.

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