By Call Sign Buttercup

FORT BRAGG — The Pentagon announced this week that all military children will be gifted lifelong therapy and alcoholism to celebrate the ‘Month of the Military Child’ this April.

“When a soldier serves, his family serves,” said Army Chief of Staff Gen. McConnville, “That’s why we’re thanking our military children with two things we know they’ll always need: alcohol and therapy.”

Children of soldiers face many different hardships. They have to move and make new friends every two to three years, wear tacky ‘My daddy’s a hero’ shirts gifted to them by family friends, and tolerate the trashy ‘rat tail’ and toddler ‘high and tights’ that their parents give them.

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Plus, today’s military children face new difficulties as the kids of social-media-obsessed millennials: they star without consent in parents’ viral “Surprise! I’m back from deployment!” videos, and their peers mock them for their parents’ silly viral Tik-Toks. The daughter of the ‘he’s a Marine’ Tik Tok video reportedly had to transfer schools because of bullying.

Of course, military children also must cope with their parents’ frequent absence, a particularly grueling burden for dual-military children. But often the absence of children’s parents is less traumatic than their presence. When they are together, the kids put up with the soldier’s obnoxious behavior, stunted emotional capacity, and constant pining for the child’s absolution of guilt for being away.

Dual-military child Ava Freedman confirmed she prefers when her parents’ are away on temporary duty or deployments.

“When my dad is home, he makes me go to all those stupid unit events like family physical training. Who the heck wants to wake up at 5 a.m. just to work out with a bunch of randos?” Freedman said. “And when my mom is home, she just gets trashed on Barefoot Moscato and complains about how no one will remember her when she retires.”

Freedman’s grandmother is her primary caregiver whenever both parents are away, or about seven years of Freedman’s 13-year-old life.

Call Sign Buttercup is living her truth.

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