What Should a MANspouse Wear for Military Homecoming?


SpouseBuzz recently ran two articles on what military wives should and should NOT wear to a military homecoming. After reading those articles I just knew I HAD to write a similar blog regarding what a MANspouse does for one. I can’t title it what not to wear or what to wear, because well, the blog would probably be one paragraph. Heck, it might only be long enough to be a run-on sentence.

I can honestly say I enjoyed both of the wife-directed posts. Being that there were pictures involved helped quite a bit, cuz we know guys like pictures. I did get a good laugh as she went over what NOT to wear and wanted to give her a big ol’ “AMEN” on each of those. Especially #10 in the NOT to wear article when she mentioned that slutty Halloween costume made to reflect the wife’s service member husbands branch of service. When it came to the tips from fashion experts, for the first time since my wife got me hooked on ‘Project Runway’ I was able to put what I have learned into practice.

(It should be noted that I do NOT watch ‘Project Runway when my wife isn’t around. So don’t go pulling my MAN-card.)

First, let’s talk about what a MANspouse should not wear. In no particular order:

1. Do NOT wear a shirt or hat that represents the branch of service you served in if it is different from the branch of service you wife serves in and you are welcoming home. Because let’s face it, even the toughest Marine “MAY” get the snot beat out of him by the 100 Navy Band guys and gals who are redeploying. Although the Marine may put up a heck of a fight. And before I get jumped by a Marine’s kid and get the snot beat out of me, I only said “may,” … he would have a fighting chance. OK backing off now.

2. Do NOT wear a muscle shirt. Even if you are ripped and look like a PT stud, you will still look like a wimp when in a room full of dudes in Combat Fatigues. Heck, your wife in her uniform will look tougher than you.

3. Do NOT wear the man’s equivalent of “Daisy Dukes.” You know, 1980’s basketball shorts. And if you aren’t familiar with what 80’s basketball shorts looked like, think of that creepy PE teacher from middle school. Those are the shorts I am talking about. (… Ranger Panties, anyone?)

4. Do NOT wear a white tank-top undershirt affectionately known as a “wife-beater.” The reason is as obvious as the name we know it by. The last thing you want is someone saying “Did you see the MANspouse wearing a wife-beater?” and having it interpreted by Command as “Did you see the MANspouse wife-beater?”That will be a guarantee your wife will endure extra hours of resiliency training concerning domestic violence.


5. DO NOT … IN ANY WAY … WITHOUT A DOUBT … wear that beard that every time you skyped with your wife or shared a picture on facebook with her that it made her confuse you with one of the locals in Afghanistan. She probably didn’t like you with a beard before she deployed and she definitely won’t like it after spending a year over there with the locals wearing one just like it.

Now. What about “What you should wear to a homecoming as a MANspouse?”

If I just said “clothes” that would probably be enough. Because, honestly, us MANspouses very well may have a lot of things that make our job a little more challenging while serving on the homefront, but in this department, it makes up for many of those things. For a guy all he really needs to do is wear a pair of khaki shorts or pants and a collared shirt. That’s it. He’s good. If a MANspouse were to overdress we all know what happens when a man is dressed better than his wife. She gets all angry at him for making her look bad and she needs to go change her outfit 22 times and gets all pissy.

And there you have it.

Oh yeah. I almost forgot. For the ladies still trying to find that right outfit for when your husband redeploys, I can almost GUARANTEE he does not care all that much what you are wearing when you pick him up. He is wondering what you will (or in this case WON’T) be wearing when you get home.

About the Author

Wayne Perry
Wayne Perry is a male military spouse (or as he likes to say, a MANspouse). He and his wife have been married for nearly seven years and she has been in the Army for three. Wayne is a stay-at-home dad with two boys that keep him extremely busy. Wayne is also an advocate for MANspouses, inspiring them to get involved in the military community and support each other. Through the facebook page MANning the Homefront he hopes to connect MANspouses with one another.

9 Comments on "What Should a MANspouse Wear for Military Homecoming?"

  1. Thanks for the input … I enjoyed the guide to what the manspouses should wear, but as female spouse, especially liked the cander for what HE is concerned about me wearing to homecoming … or not!

  2. Stephen Hendrickx | July 31, 2012 at 6:46 pm |

    As a male and one who has returned from overseas, albeit a very long time ago, it seems to me to that to dress respectably and neatly would be the way to dress for a guy welcoming his spouse back from deployment. I know what it was to be "neat and respectable" and I hope the guys today haven't forgotten how to do that. It all means no shorts, sleveless t's, t–shirts, come on guys get with it and think church clothes and that would be a suit if you wanted to. It doesn't take much to dress nicely to show your spouse that you really care about her and that she's home and you care enough to dress neatly and respectably for her. Clothes (pressed), shaven, Clean, it all goes to say "I care about and love you this much".

  3. LOVE it!!

  4. jacey_eckhart | August 1, 2012 at 1:50 pm |

    Wayne Perry this is the best work you've ever done. I will never look at a MANspouse at homecoming without thinking of you. In a beard. Taking remedial spouse resiliency training. Well done, you!

  5. I feel the need to point something out. I wrote this strictly for fun and made an attempt to be funny. It was brought to my attention after it was posted I made a serious error in jedgement. While it has not been pointed out in any comments, I want to acknowledge a "party foul" before anyone else does. I am humble enough to admit when I make a mistake.

    On #1 of what not to wear I implied that a service member, prior or active, should not wear a shirt or hat identifying their branch of service if different than their spouses. This was beyond wrong on my part and I did not think of the fact that ANYONE who has served has earned the right to wear anything that identifies them to their branch of service they were/are affiliated with.

    I do hope folks understand this was a lack of good judgement on my part and I am sorry if I offended anyone.

    I hope I am able to extiguish any fires before they start. I am eating my humble pie.

  6. This is hilarious! Great post!

  7. I was happy that my ManSpouse was on the pier when the ship pulled in! A clean pair jean & a button down shirt, the beard was there when I married his and was part of the required gear except when regs. said different.

  8. Agree with this post. My hubby wore a pair of comfy jeans, sneakers, and a button down shirt with the sleeves rolled up 3/4 of the way. It drove me insane… couldn't wait to rip the buttons later that night. lol :)

  9. C'mon Wayne. Great article you owe no apologies. Truth is you were spot on. Great advice and something many women probably think but to the guys is an after thought. One note on twhat women should wear. Doesn't matter just have Velcro straps and must look good as it lays in a pile on the floor.

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