Tuesday, November 13, 2012
The Headmaster's Wager
Friendships are forged fast in the military community. We support one another through some of the most difficult of times imaginable.
But how much of our personal lives should we share with our friends? In the beginning of a new friendship we want to believe without a doubt that we have good judgement in picking out our friends. We want to trust that what we confide to our new found friend will stay between the two of us.
Friendships are often formed within the rank structure. Supposedly a uniformed person cannot have a friendship with another member of the uniformed services two ranks above or below depending on another rule of junior enlisted, senior enlisted, junior officer or command grade and so on. For the spouses of the uniformed personal it makes things rather sketchy when forming friendships.
In my husband's rank structure I have almost absolutely nothing to do with most of the spouses that are within that area. I'm not a snob. I just have my own idea of whom I'd like to be friends with. For the most part I can't trust the wives I'm supposed to associate with. Many are younger than I and very inexperienced. Most have children and I do not. And, this may really make me sound like I'm a snob, most can barely comprehend what I have to say because there is an educational gap. Let me not forget the fact that being infertile means that I will most likely be judged by my use of science to get pregnant.
The female friends I normally attract while in waiting rooms, FRG meetings, and social gathering are not in my husband's rank range. No I attract the women with education, age, and experience. My life isn't like the television show were were can just go to their house and have iced tea. It doesn't reflect well upon the soldiers to have a General's wife and an enlisted spouse's wife being chummy.
So who can I trust? I have tried to trust with secrets the lower enlisted women I have to choose from. I've been stabbed in the back, exploited, and ridiculed to my face and behind my back. Where I once thought I had complete control of a situation and of my destiny I have found that I can't trust my feelings and secrets to just anyone. I have to be more selective.
The people that we chose for our friends do reflect upon us. If you chose poorly it doesn't look well for you or your spouse. Lesson learned.
Headmaster Percivial Chen is a proud Chinese born man who runs English language school during the cusp of the Vietnam War. In his refusal to accept his adopted country's turbulent times, his gamble becomes a life changer. Join From Left to Write on November 15 as we discuss the The Headmaster's Wager. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.