This blog is managed by Clare Macnaughton; a modern military mother; a feminist, British military spouse, and lifestyle journalist, writing about real life adventures.

A few years ago, I co-wrote, in conjunction with a serving Royal Marine Major, Immediate Response, a battlefield memoir about the role of Chinooks in Afghanistan, which was published by Michael Joseph, in September 09. In the second week of sales entered at number 9 in The Sunday Times hardback non-fiction top 10 bestseller list.

In February 2010 I self published via Createspace & Amazon Kindle A Modern Military Mother – Tales from the Domestic Frontline now re-named as ‘I Hate Housework’ available via Amazon worldwide. It’s a collection of thoughts and reflections about love, life, marriage and war. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad, it’s well worth a read.


I Hate Housework (Paperback) by Clare Macnaughton

I Hate Housework – (KINDLE) by Clare Macnaughton

Tales From The Domestic Frontline – (Audio Book) by Clare Macnaughton

I HATE HOUSEWORK is for women who hate housework and being told what to do. If you feel that you are a slave to your family then read this book. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad and sometimes crazy, this is a quick and easy read. Meet ‘Hagar’, the Chinook-flying husband frequently on secret missions in ‘The Stan’, and the children, a son, ‘The Grenade’, and, a daughter, ‘The Menace’. Listen to accounts of the handbag-bashing, bake-offs and backstabbing that conceal the isolated and unpleasant truth of the life for wives and girlfriends, the long celibate months alone with the kids waiting for news from the war zone, and Hagar’s return, when, addicted to the high-octane thrill of combat, he is in need of action at home. This is a roller-coaster ride of laughs and home truths that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

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The Blog:

I started the blog A Modern Military Mother to help explain life from the other side of the British military. There are so many misconceptions about military life that I felt it was time to put the record straight.

Originally, it was for women, like myself, who are married to the military and often are raising their kids alone married, single and celibate. But some of the women, who are military spouses, don’t feel that I should be representative of their voice. I write the blog now as a reflection of my own experiences in a decade of marriage to a man who serves in the military. This is my truth.

For the first three years of my son’s life my husband was at home on average, at the most, for around 6 months in every one of those years. It was hard for him and my husband as they were very disconnected from each other and as our lives were so fragmented the constant re-integration was challenging.

The idea for the blog came when one day I was sitting on a train to London. I’d got up at 7am, dressed the kids, given them their breakfast, dropped off my 20 month old daughter at nursery and dropped off my son at school. I drove from Dorset to Reading, parked at the station and caught a train. My journey was interrupted because there was a fatality on the track and we were then sent back to Reading where I embarked on another train to Waterloo. While I was waiting on the train, as it slowly filled up to the gunwhales, another milly wife walked past the train window. Her journey had been impacted by the same event. She is based in Oxfordshire and is an oncologist trying to get the Nobel Peace Prize by finding a cure for cancer. We spoke on the phone. Her husband was deployed. She had an incredibly important presentation to give in London. Her son was in childcare in Oxford and she had no back up to collect him. It was during this conversation, in my head I began to draft a blog. I called it A Modern Military Mother not because I am the mother of someone who is serving, but because I am a mother whose parenting choices are continually impacted by my decision to marry someone in the military. In this respect I see myself as a modern, military mother.

A very good friend of mine has a son who is serving and I feel her aching when he is deployed. I think it is harder for the mothers of the serving than it is for the wives. The love I feel for my children is unconditional. The modern military mothers whose children serve, endure the agony and the ecstacy of parenting greater than most. I have nothing but the upmost respect and admiration for them.

This is the blog of a modern, military spouse, who is a mother to her children and so therefore I have called it A Modern Military Mother. That’s me that is..

Clare Macnaughton, however, is now amicably separated from her military husband and lives with her two children in Wiltshire. In partnership, she and her husband are co-parenting and raising their children together. For the last three years she has been a hit on the Wiltshire Women’s Institute speaker circuit with her funny stories about being married to the military.


Hagar the Horrible aka Hagar Wee Jock Poo-Pong McPlop

The Grenade – 13 years old.

The Menace – 8 years old.

Pippin MC – the resident Lion.


Not forgetting the chickens, ducks and guinea pigs!


  1. I too am a Modern Military Mother, and I can really identify with the story you have told here. When my sailor is away, we crack on and it’s okay but when he comes home I realise how much I have been struggling … and feel like a weight has been lifted. Life becomes easier when I hadn’t even acknowledged how hard it had been. It’s that getting the balance between being a workng mother and finding enough time to do everything else. I dont let myself really have those kind of thoughts, I cant afford too. I hope that makes sense….

    Anyway, he’s here now until September, uninterrupted. Its exciting!

    1. Hi Claire, Thanks for stopping by. It is a rollercoaster but you don’t choose who you fall in love with. It’s like you are living but holding your breath for the duration and then when they cross threshold again – you breathe out and the pain of holding your breathe for that long begins to ache for a bit until you re-adjust. The navy have done more work then any other service on the culture of prolonged absence, they have some good literature on the stages pre, during on after. I must get my hands on it – it’s worth checking out. Hagar is around until the autumn – we can hold our breath together 😉

  2. Not sure how best to contact you! Can we ‘chat’ about your suggestions for me to extend my Tales of the Heads Office’? If you DM (@jfb57) I can send an email address

  3. It’s surreal to follow your web site about Restrepo. My son served there and like many of these boys, he’s had a very rough time. I saw the movie/read the book which helps me understand what they went through. Maybe some day someone will tell their families’ stories, too. This experience has changed us all our relationship with our sons will never be the same as we carry the legacy of this experience.

    1. Hi Rita, welcome. You are definitely a modern military mother. It is a legacy that you carry. It so important that these stories are told and these young men are able to share their grief and their joy. The Restrepo rollercoaster. De-compression is so important and being able to talk needs to be encouraged even if its to those who have shared the experience. I think as wives and mothers sometimes we are not the people they need to share with which is desperate. I can’t bear to watch my kids suffer I would gladly suffer to alleviate their pain but alas sometimes they have to just endure the journey and make their own way through it. Life is for living, experiencing and enjoying – I hope you can all find away to bounce back again to look to the future and see it’s bright. Lots of love to you. xxxx

  4. Since you are blogging about the military, I’d like to request that you review our site. The site is almost a year old, and being developed by two USAF veterans. We are focusing on education currently, but plan to grow into all benefits eventually. We plan on this being a vital resource for all military, including spouses, families, veterans, etc. Thank you for your time.

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