Military couples combat marriage stress

Rockford Beegen
Rockford Beegen
Tracy Beegen
Tracy Beegen
Alaina Simpson
Alaina Simpson
Calvin Simpson
Calvin Simpson

By Duane Shimogawa - bio | email

TURTLE BAY (KHNL) - Married couples often face numerous challenges, but military couples face additional hardships, like being apart from one another for extended periods of time.

An organization is hoping to keep those marriages from falling apart.

A marriage conference called a 'Weekend To Remember' was held at Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu's North Shore.

Nearly 200 couples showed up for the three-day event.

It's aimed at shooting down divorce rates, and helping couples with their problems, big or small.

Rockford Beegen joined the Army just two weeks before he got married to Tracy.

"It's very hard because you're not here, you have no control when you're gone over what happens here, when you come back it's difficult, you can't just jump in and run the show," said Beegen.

Many military couples face this dreadful dilemma.

"I'm a single parent when he's gone, so it's like I'm a single married mom, so you get used to him being here and then he's gone, and then you get used to him being gone, then he comes back," said Beegen's wife, Tracy.

Beegen just came back from his third deployment. They both decided this weekend's marriage conference was a must.

"For a long time, I lacked the understanding, just being able to understand where my wife is coming from," said Beegen.

But now that understanding of each other has improved after learning valuable lessons at this conference.

"Really, I've taken away just how important my role is as a wife and a mother and just how important it is to communicate and take that time for him and I," said Tracy Beegen.

Although every couple was encouraged to attend, family life gave military couples a special discount to thank them for their service to our country.

"What we needed more, moreso was to learn to be more of a unity, with each other, being in the military, you have a lot of stuff going on and we also just had twins, so our time has been swept up with them," said Alaina Simpson, a military wife.

Calvin and Alaina Simpson are now on their fourth year of marriage. They admit it's not easy being a military couple, but taking the time to come to conferences like this, makes a big difference.

"I think the biggest thing I take away from this is how to treat my wife, not that I didn't know how to, but even more, that's she's something to be cherished because she's a gift," said Simpson's husband, Calvin.

It's a memorable gift given to one another in this 'Weekend To Remember'.

After the final presentation on Sunday, every couple got the chance to renew their vows.