Soldier in need of help

I am a specialist in the medical field. My SGT is relatively new to her division however she has been working on this base longer than i have. When she came to her new division, i was the one that trained her on everything. Now, 6 months later, she is in charge and runs things here and i do as i am told like a good soldier. However she has gotten to the point that she tries to bust me on every little thing.

It started with a counseling statement when my civilian supervisor told her that i left without finishing my work and didnt tell her. However i had told my civilian supervisor that morning and 10 min before i left that my wife had an appointment at 1030 and that i had to drive her. My SGT then gave me a counseling on the importance of responsibility and placing the mission first, however the appointment is supposed to be my place of duty, same goes for my wife. Though she is not military, she doesnt drive and her appointment was with the on post clinic. I told my SGT what happend and how i had told the supervisor that i had an appointment and she had known about it all along and that the task i had to complete, i was not qualified to do on my own without her assistance. My SGT said that she didnt care and that i was still responsible. The NCO then gave me a 4000 word essay hand written with words only above 4 letters counting. and also i had to keep a log book for 30 days and state what i was doing every hour at work and get initials from a supervisor.

I failed to complete the essay on time. i was on TDY and i just didnt do it that was my fault. I did try to complete it so the last night i stayed up for 36 hours working on it. i only got half way done and i turned it in as such. Logically, she re issued the essay and said that i had until tomorrow morning at 8 to turn it in. i completed it but it wasnt only my handwritting. i typed up the essay, but my hand had starting cramping after 12 hours of writing so my wife wrote what i had typed. after turning the essay in she gave me another counseling because the essay wasnt written by only me. I tried to explain that i had been up for 50 hours doing those essays for her and hadnt slept in almost 3 days, had to skip my psychology class to get it completed, and that i wasnt able to write the entire essay because eventually my hand just locked up. It took two people working until 0520 in the morning to finish it, but she didnt care even though that meant had my wife not helped me i couldnt have possibly finished.

After this, i was tasked to write myself a counseling statement and to do what it said. i had tasked myself to write a 500 word essay, on the importance of responsibility and duty to the mission. Additionally i stated that for the next 15 days if i were to leave for an appointment, i must get my supervisors signature stating that they understand what work i am leaving behind. However for that entire period, i scheduled all of my appointments and wife's appointments during my lunch period so that i didnt take time out of work. One of the days, i had lunch coverage (meaning that i stay back until someone else is there to watch the place and do any work that comes in) however i had talked with the other specialist and she had left at 11 to go take her husband out to lunch, when she came back at 12, i left for my lunch and to take my wife to her appointment. Now, my SGT is saying that i failed to perform my corrective training of obtaining a signature. I had told her no SGT, i never left due to an appointment. i only left for my lunch and went to my appointment during that time. Afterwards she found the date that the specialist had came back early and relieved me for lunch. I tried to exlain to her that it was still my lunch but she just said that i was pushing her buttons and making her mad. So now i think my last option is to go to the 1SG.

She doesnt seem to care about the truth at all, she just focuses on a reason to give me a negative counseling. and now i have to give a 30 min class on the importance of responsibility.

It is just seeming like i have a target on my back and she just keeps trying to find things to get me for.

Please give me advice.
Original Post
Have a talk and tell her how you feel and ask for help.

You might also need to talk with other NCOs in the chain together or alone.

Sounds like she is still learning to be an NCO- she tasked you to counsel yourself? That might be appropriate sometimes but not every time.


Your wife is a grown adult, right?? No matter how difficult things might be (or whatever circumstances there are,) she needs to learn to be self-sufficient. You can't drive her to every appointment for the rest of her life.

My wife's grandmother didn't get her license until grandpa's eyesight went out and by that time it was too late- she failed the test 3 times and after passing sideswiped a parked schoolbus, parked in the cart corral at walmart and didn't realize it until the doors wouldn't open, etc... (TRUE. STORY.)
They took public transportation from then on.

My wife didn't get her license until she was 22yrs old and married to me. Just didn't need to. It would have been better if she'd practiced earlier but oh well.

JUST MY OPINION, hope things work out for you. Hopefully others (more wise than I) will have better ideas/concern for you.

Take care!
4000 words? Seems a bit extreme if it was a single occurrence, especially if you could provide proof that you were at a scheduled appointment. I would talk to her one on one like auto said and see if it works. Make sure you tell her whenever you have an appointment for your wife or anyone as soon as you make it and remind her the day before it as well. That way if she tries to hammer you for things like that you can say you did inform her.

The essay was your own fault, it sounds like you had an ample amount of time to get it done and just procrastinated. Still when/if you talk to her bring up that you were on your scheduled break after staying late for lunch to be relieved again. If you were on your own time for lunch then it was your time.

Overall it sounds like you've ended up on the bad side of this NCO and you should keep your head down and not make waves until it passes. I'm telling you now that unless you can't think of any other way to solve your issues DO NOT GO to the 1SG. S/he's not going to care as much as you want him to and you'll only do irreparable damage to any sort of working relationship with first line and then she will nail you for anything she can. Just talk with her and try to work out some way to fix this.
I have tried talking to her about it, every time the subject gets brought up she looks at it as me making excueses or just being irresponsible and not taking responsibility for my own actions. Also there are no other NCO's in my chain of command or in my work place. she is the only one here. she has been an e-5 for at least 10 years. she worked at this place in a different division for a long time.

i feel like in this specific situation, tasking me to counsel myself is a good idea to an extent, the negative point though, is that she doesnt actually pay mind to what i put in it. she makes sure it all corelates and has the right information it, yes. But she doesnt actually read it and say "What he said makes sense actually, maybe i should talk to him in the matter." In the chain of command after her is the 1SG. the first time i get the 4000 word essay, after i got back from TDY i tried talking to an e-6 that is ahead of the division that we are techincally attached to. I found out that apparently they have no authority over us so me talking to her didnt matter and it looked like i was trying to get my SGT in trouble. (though that wasnt the case)

as for my wife, she would drive if she could but she has a number of mental disorders such as PTSD and some others, that prevent her from being able to legally obtain a license. Because of that she has never been able to learn to drive.

Because of these issues, i must take her to appointments once a week as well as spending my lunch break taking her to class and thats fine. i dont have any problems with that. i just wish that my command would understand that i do have things that i have to get done and other responsibilities too. i can balance them all, i just need everyone to be understanding. we live on base and there is no public transportation on base due to it being a small post. The clinic is however on the opposite side of post as my house and it is very cold outside. my wife weighs 92 lbs and should not be walking 3 miles in snow.
but i know you were trying to offer advice. SO thank you very much, i'm simply just saying why i cant do that.
Roger on the driving- hope you can make it work.

-what if she wasn't married to you?
-what if something happens to you and you're not around?
-the Army WILL eventually deploy you. OR you will have to go away for school 1-10months. ((otherwise you'll get kicked out for non-advancement))
You have to plan for you being 100% not at home or available to help out.
you are definitely correct about the questions to consider. To be honest, i dont know. Her friend who is learning to drive is moving in with us soon so she will be able to take me car and take my wife places so that should be an improvement.
i think that the driving wife around is an issue yes, but im not seeing that as the pressing matter. as i have had days where i had to make my own appointment and left, but the SGT got mad because i left and there was still work to be done. Even though it was my place of duty, im still responsible for work that gets left behind for my co workers. i told the supervisor what was left and she just told my SGT something. i dont know what she said. i just know that the SGT was telling me that i need to put the mission first and stay to complete my work or effectivly communicate what work is left to be done. Although i feel as though i did but that was between the supervisor and my SGT. The next time this happened. i stayed behind as long as i could to finish the work. Then i left to get to my appointment, ended up being late for the appointment and am now being put in for an article 15 for missing my place of duty. The 1SG got my message letting him know that the paperwork for my missed appointment would be coming through and i also told him that the reason that i missed it, is because i was staying behind, trying to finish the work that i had left so i wouldnt leave it for other people. However when the 1SG asked my SGT she said that she didnt know what i was talking about because i left work for my co workers. what she told him was only partly true. out of an hour of work, i did the first 45 min and left 15 min of work because i was already running late. She didnt mention any of that to him though.

So all of that above is just me trying to show that it isnt ONLY my wife being driven around that is causing this, it is however one of the problems, but only one of them.
Sorry Eyes, i didnt see your post. The essay was a bit extreme yes, especially with words above 3 words counting. it ended up being 8000 words or so. i do schedule the appointments on a calender that she has access to, as well. i will either send her an email or tell her in person about the appointment also. it isnt scheduled work that i miss, its random work that happens to show up at the same time as my appointment, things that cant be planned around. Also she doesnt deny that i inform her, she just says that upon leaving i left work for other people. i dont even leave for appointments any more, i do them during my lunch. but now she has a problem with me working with the others soldiers to switch lunches back and forth so i can make my appointments during my lunch. i agree about the essay being my fault, the first one at least. i procrastinated to long and didnt get it done. the second one however, i did everything within my power to get it done in time, and had i not gotten help from my wife (which was the problem with the second essay) then it wouldnt have been completed as i only has 14 hours to do it, including eating food and anything else i did that day. Which is why i didnt sleep for so long.

The issue with telling her that it was during my lunch is that she then told me that i was making her mad because i had a reason for everything any time she tried to get me with something.

as for the 1sg, i agree and am trying to avoid it.
I see both sides, your place of duty is work not your wifes appointment, even if its on post and you played the system by saying "oh well i went to lunch to take her to an appt" saying that she seems to be on the wrong track with that excessive corrective trainng and making you counsel yourself among other things you mentioned...i know if i had a Soldier that had to take his spouse to every appt and that spouse had so many appts like your wife, i would be upset as well as it gives everyone the appereance that you are shamming and getting a free paycheck...
Originally posted by TransAm95NCO:
I see both sides, your place of duty is work not your wifes appointment, even if its on post and you played the system by saying "oh well i went to lunch to take her to an appt" saying that she seems to be on the wrong track with that excessive corrective trainng and making you counsel yourself among other things you mentioned...i know if i had a Soldier that had to take his spouse to every appt and that spouse had so many appts like your wife, i would be upset as well as it gives everyone the appereance that you are shamming and getting a free paycheck...

If he's doing it on his lunch schedule like he said then there's no way it can be viewed as shamming. If someone was dipping out of work all the time for their wife then I agree but their lunch break should be their own time.
I think that making a Soldier complete an Essay is a complete waste of time. How does that fix the original problem? Most NCOs that I know who choose that method don't even know how to properly write an essay. Are they basing their corrective training on how it was written (4 letter words) or the content of it? Sounds like that NCO has been an E-5 for over 10 years for a reason.

Now, on to the appointment thing...IMO, take care of your family first, but also have a backup plan like others have mentioned. If I could get my Soldiers to make their appointments for lunch I would be a happy camper! However, the appointment hotline system that a lot of bases use doesn't always work in your favor.
Eyes is correct, her appointments are made during the lunch period.
Go ordnance, you are right about the review of the essay, she looked at the words, not the thought. At some point it had just turned into a i just have to put words that make sense and thats all, because a 56 page essay on importance of responsibility and duty to the mission can only go on for so long before it repeats itself.
Sweet baby jesus, a 4K word essay?!?! Are you competing for your doctorate or something?

I kid...Anywhoo, I believe there's some sort of creed that we NCOs follow? I think its got something in there about mission accomplishment and the WELFARE OF MY SOLDIERS? That also includes the soldier's family and spouse? Right?

How is it if you're off worrying about your family that any mission related work will be completed and done so correctly? I'll tell you. It won't.

IMO, you are well within your rights to go see your 1SG about this issues. This is why commander's and senior NCOs have open door policies! Seeing anyone about your issues is not against regulation nor can anyone make it a lawful order for you to keeep your mouth shut.

1. You're taking care of your spouse (by extension, you) during your lunch break!!! Nothing wrong with that.

2. Your E5 should have counseled you correctly. IMO, a discussion between the two of you would have worked. It also seems you were doubly punished. An essay AND being required to document what you did, every hour, signed by a supervisor? Did you also annotate in there, when you pooped and if your stool was soft or firm?

3. Granted, if a subordinate soldier fails in their mission, we as NCOs have failed in ours, BUT if assistance is needed, that NCO should be there to supply it. Either by direction, motivation or in your case, requiring civilians to assist. SHARE THE WORKLOAD when needed.

4. You have a civilian supervisor AND an E5 in charge of you? If so, talk with someone about this. Too many chiefs, not enough indians...

All in all, speak up for yourself...Geez. Big Grin

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