In the military, they try to make things equal - mainly, that means women are suppose to look like men! (which they do, it's hard to tell male from female when you're wearing a helmet and combat boots, an M16 swing across your back, and a gas mask on your hip) You can not wear earrings, makeup can not be excessive, etc. Some women choose to hold on to the bit of femininity that they can by choosing to wear Victoria's Secret underneath the uniforms.
You are ALWAYS reminded that you are a female soldier:
- Taking Depo shots so that you don't get your period
- Hair falling out in clumps from the stress
- Not being able to stop to go to the bathroom so you must pee in a cup on a moving convoy and throw it out the window
- No showers, just cleaning yourself with baby wipes
- Rumors - even if you don't sleep with anyone, people will say that you have slept with your WHOLE unit
- Unwanted gawking and comments when wearing t-shirts on very warm days
- Sleeping with your back to the wall to protect yourself, that chance of rape is HIGH during war times
- Post-traumatic stress disorder when you return home
You never go back to who you were before you were deployed - you become harsher, have severe mood swings, nightmares, jump when even a balloon pops, and are less trusting. Ultimately, you stop looking to the future and look at everyday and how you are going to get through it!
Let's continue to pray for our troops.