What I've Learned from Talking to My Husband Thru a Computer Screen

Wendy Poling
Frequent Contributor

When your loved one is far from home staying connected through a video chat can be a lifesaver.


Even if you don't use the video portion because the Internet connection is sloooow and just use the audio portion, it is a-maz-ing to be able to communicate this way.


Here is what I've learned from talking to my husband through my computer screen:


  • I learned that I am one lucky girl when it actually works. We spent many deployments with him "out of range" with no email, much less the option to video chat.
  • I'm good at imagining he is in Norfolk or Bangor and not 8,000+ miles from home. Well, except for the background images of body armor.
  • I've learned to practice restraint and listen more. I don't feel the need to download my entire day in the first five minutes like if we were on a telephone call for fear we'll be cut off. (He might disagree on this one.)
  • I feel like I'm sharing in his experience since I can actually "see" where he is living. I can count the number of times I've seen the inside of a submarine on one hand, so seeing his living area regularly is a great improvement.
  • I've learned that it's much easier to talk about the administrative details of our lives. For example: The Power of Attorney I STILL need to get for our upcoming move, insurance details, the fact his motorcycle tags need to be renewed, directions (again) on how to start his motorcycle, etc.
  • I appreciate the technology of today's communications more everyday. I can carry my cell phone with me everywhere I go so I don't miss an email or phone call. Ten years ago the only communication we had was me sending 40 word family grams once a week while he was at sea.
  • I've learned it is a great way to wind down from my day. Although it doesn't replace him being here of course, there is something wonderful about seeing his face, mannerisms and smile.

I realize not every deployment or time away from your spouse offers the ability to keep in contact via video chat. Lack of communication is one of toughest parts of being separated from the one you love. Not knowing how they are, where they are, if they are safe, if they have enough to eat, if they have a warm place to sleep can be very stressful.

But for today, I'm thankful for this unique opportunity to communicate in this way.


The last thing I've learned (so far) is the person who invented Skype should be inducted into some sort of military spouse Favorite Things Hall of Fame.


Okay, now where is that Skype icon...


What have you learned from communicating to your spouse through your computer screen via video chat or email?


Related links:

Legal Preparations for Active Duty Deployment
Deployment Checklist