The Dependapotamus Hunter


Military spouses being trolled online? Sounds like a concern for those worried about showing up on terrorist hit lists but these trolls are anything but foreign. They are blue-blooded Americans, spring from military communities, and are often veterans, active-duty soldiers, and fellow military spouses. They are dependapotamus hunters.

They primarily target wives, not husbands. Whether this is because of statistics and there are fewer male spouses out there, we can’t determine. But it seems that dependapotamus hunters prize the females of the pack and generally leave the males to their business.

What might a dependapotamus hunter set their sights on?

● Military wives who complain about military life. If you belong to a military support group and complain about how tough it’s been while hubby is deployed, you might be surprised to find your comment posted as a screenshot to one of several dependapotamus hunter forums.

● Overweight military spouses. If you dare to leave a comment in a public forum stating you are a military spouse and your accompanying profile pic shows any extra weight, expect the hate. Pregnancy is not an excuse for many dependapotamus hunters, who love hating on anyone they can accuse of being lazy and indulged.

● Military wives who wear uniform items. If you took an old name tape from hubby’s uniform and added it to your jeans jacket – you might find your picture being shared by Dear Dependa II.

● Military wives who show pride in their husband’s service. Did you dare to say “We have a new assignment” or mention your husband’s latest promotion to your favorite group of military spouse friends? One of them might have taken a screenshot to share with OSMW (Overly Sensitive Military Wife).

● Military wives who advocate for military spouses in general. If you suggest that a company might want to offer a discount or a museum might want to offer free entry for military families this summer, you are participating in the dreaded “entitlement” behavior that dependapotamus hunters just can’t abide.

● Military wives who are in the public eye and write personal blogs, publish articles, or comment on the articles of others with opinions that don’t jive with a dependapotamus hunter point of view. Depending on the group of hunters, this could be a political, cultural, or moral difference. Either way, they call in fellow hunters and the taunting soon takes over any comment sections.

We can say that, in general, a dependapotamus hunter targets military spouses who stick out. If you’re quiet, polite, and generally don’t have much to say, you’re probably safe. If you are well-camouflaged in the general crowd, you have no worries. But if you dare to exhibit any of the prime behaviors that attract a dependapotamus hunter, look out.

And be warned.

When milspouses are bullied on social media...

According to the Seven Stage Hate Model developed for the FBI by John R. Schafer and Joe Navarro, dependapotamus hunters might not be the joke we would like to think they are.

Dependapotamus hunters don’t work alone. They join forums on social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Reddit. Finding like-minded individuals with whom to bond is the first step that could lead to committing a hate crime.

The next step is to develop symbols and rituals that identify themselves to one another. For dependapotamus hunters, the most basic ritual is to use a common vocabulary, beginning with the word dependa but any derivation of it, like dependapotamus or dependasaurus, will do.

Then one has to prove oneself to fellow hunters. Taking screenshots of dependa behavior, especially in a closed or secret group setting, and then sharing them with the ‘gang’ proves that a dependapotamus hunter has bought into the system.

After a dependapotamus hunter has shared proof that he or she has found a ripe hunting ground, fellow hunters move in to taunt the target. Taunting can take several guises but most often demean a spouse by using misogynistic images and crude slurs.

Taunting turns into attacks. The line is thin and often it’s hard to tell where a taunt turns into an attack and online dependapotamus hunters are great at deflecting the attention away from their horrendous behavior and back on the victim. But attacks generally try to dehumanize a military spouse. For example, a recent attack included posting a picture of a man holding a martini while looking the camera in the eye and read “I may not be a gynecologist but I know a *u** when I see one.” Attacks can also include posting personal information about the hunted or their family online. This can be very problematic in the military community when breaks in operational security not only place individual families in danger but can harm military missions as well.

The next two steps in the FBI’s hate crime list are ones we hope we never see within the military community. The sixth model happens when targets are physically attacked and the seventh when targets are actually killed. Fortunately, as far as we know, dependapotamus hunting remains an online activity.

Dependapotamus hunters want us to think this is all in fun. Shouldn’t we have a sense of humor and all?

CNN recently published a report about military family suicide and while the exact numbers are yet unknown, a recent survey from Blue Star Families revealed that 9% of their survey participants have considered suicide. And those are only the spouses willing to admit to an attempt. The numbers don’t include those who will never say a word nor those who have succeeded.

In a community that is fraught with mental health problems, with stress, with depression, it is only a matter of time before dependapotamus hunters claim a real victim. Whether that is their true intention or not, won’t really matter. Their behavior is not only insensitive, it is extremely hazardous, and should be called out as such every time it is seen.

If you belong to any of these groups listed below or enable dependapotamus hunting, you may want to reconsider the part you are playing as a cyberbully and question how far your gang is really willing to go to pursue the hunted.

If you have friends who belong to these groups, it may be time for an intervention. What are they hoping to accomplish? If military spouse bashing is just a way to pass the time, maybe you can convince them their actions belittle the military community. At best, they are trying to act like the cool kids of the high school clique and think that hating on others makes them big and bad and ever so important. At worst, they are dangerous and out to harm others.

A current list of Dependapotamus Hunters:

Facebook:
Dear Dependa (deleted by Facebook)
Dear Dependa II
Dear Dependa III
Dependa World
Dependa on Tumblr
Joes Against Hoes III
[MWBB] Guide: How To Not Be a Dependasaurus
Not Your Average Dependa  (recently deleted by Facebook)
Overly Sensitive Military Wives (https://www.facebook.com/Dependopotomus, deleted by Facebook)
OSMW

U.S. Army WTF! Moments Facebook page

Twitter:
Anti-dependapotamus @antidependa
Caught Dependas @CaughtDependas
Dear Dependa @DearDependa2 https://twitter.com/dependadear (shut down by Twitter; reappeared as https://twitter.com/DoNotPlayWithUs)
OSMW @OSMW

We are reviewing all comments – anything that is vulgar, uses profanity, threatening or we deem inappropriate WILL be removed. Yes – you are entitled to your opinions – but they will not be published on here if they are deemed inappropriate. Thank you for your understanding and consideration when posting. MOC team

 

Angie DrakeAngie is the founder of Not Your Average American where she currently writes about living and traveling in South America. As the daughter of an Air Force NCO and the wife of an Air Force Officer, she has broad experience with military life. She is outspoken about issues that affect the military community and posts opinion pieces at DailyKos and helps run the KeepYourPromise Facebook page with more than 100,000 followers fighting to keep military pay and benefits intact.

134 Comments

  1. Thank you so much for writing this. It is a real problem and with some of those sites well over 70,000 fans it is getting out of hand. I am very active in my community and have been the target of quite a bit of flak.

    1. I’ve been amazed that more in our military community aren’t aware of the problem. Spouses that are targeted, and their friends, know that this is scary and not funny at all. It’s time that we share our stories so that more in the community understand that this is a serious issue and no joke.

      Hopefully some of those pages will be losing followers in the next few days.

  2. You might want to add U.S. Army WTF! Moments Facebook page – they spend an awful lot of time with these activities. Sadly.

    1. Actually, if you took some time and did some research. The page itself does not spend an “awful lot of time with these activities” as you suggest.

      They do however make fun of stupid people, but they also do an awful lot of helping others when help is needed. But sure continue to go on thinking the way you do. I am sure you will go far in life.

      1. Agreed, Nope! WTF has saved lives, saved stranded Soldiers, Veterans, AND their families. I’m sure we can’t talk about that, tho, because that doesn’t follow the proper protocol of the “poor pity me” depends attitude.

        1. Just because they also help some veterans doesn’t mean they aren’t misogynistic and belittling to military spouses and women service members.

        2. Count the number of times you see the words “sammich maker” (just one of the so very enlightened references to women) and number of pictures posted purely for negative sport.

  3. I live on a military base and there is a website for sales on this base that daily has attacks on wives and demeans and intimidates spouses. Its overwhelming and disgusting. 100% of the name calling and memes comes from active duty soldiers and veterans and even other spouses. I’ve got thick skin and I’m quick witted but I’d be lying if I didn’t say it didn’t hurt. I’m so tired of not being able to speak up without being called a dependa or getting screen shot and posted to OSMW. I can’t win and if I ignore it the name calling continues and the memes get worse and more vulgar. I’m a vet myself and a spouse to an active duty soldier but I can’t use any army vernacular without being calked horrendous names. It’s gotta stop. The brotherhood of the army should include the families. We are here too! The army brought us here too and now we’re stuck and lonely and afraid to speak!

    1. The more I talk about this issue with people, the more I hear stories like yours. It is completely unacceptable that your community has to put up with this.

      Could you ask the admin of the website to block users who participate in such behavior? Generally, people who act like bullies feel safety in numbers, which is one reason why they congregate on forums like the ones listed in the article. Once they are banned from leaving comments and it becomes harder for the remaining few to find defenders, the behavior will hopefully stop.

      Alternatively, you could start another sales page and advertise it as a safe place to post. You could set basic rules and folks that don’t follow them could be banned (by you). If you want to give folks a chance, you could always start with a warning though many of these folks know exactly what they’re doing.

      Either way, I hope that you won’t be afraid to speak up. And I hope others in your community will start to speak up as well. This ugly trend has got to stop.

  4. It is ironic that so many wives and female soldiers/veterans are so devoted to some of these pages, especially since women’s rights were never ratified by the states. Not to say that these pages never have anything funny on them (because some of them are not solely focused on hate speech), but several of them openly promote misogyny and bigotry without ever speaking the words. They prey on a portion of the population’s ignorance – the ones who are devoted to the pages – to what hate speech constitutes, and how they are making all women vulnerable to the male population that fail to truly understand the satirical nature originally intended.

    It is a case of satire run a muck, as I see it, because it has become a substitutive, cultural norm for younger (and sometimes older) male soldiers to misinterpret the intent and to use it as nothing more than true hate speech – that does sometimes spill over into everyday life. I call it substitutive, because we are talking about military members and families here, and the one thing most of them have in common is having their culture ripped from under their feet as they intermingle with different people from duty station to duty station.

    Many of the followers to this trend like to use the excuse “if you don’t like it, don’t look at it,” but the same could be said for themselves. It does not really hurt anyone if some lady wants to carry an ACU purse, brag too much about her husband, or other negatively perceived traits they mention; if it were not these issues at hand, it would simply be something else.

    The civilian world sees annoying traits all of the time, and one of those said “annoying” traits is the civilian/military gap that has been mentioned over the last few years. As the government has focused its recruiting on lower to middle class areas, and recruited/retained fewer soldiers, the civilian population has begun to become disconnected with the military community and are starting to perceive an entitlement problem among those that serve – and their families.

    The Army Times recently had an article on this, and one of the key points they made was that the soldiers themselves are the key to opening dialect with the civilian population (this article stemmed from other articles from the Washington Post and New York times). With this type of behavior, however, and the behavior in the comments in the said articles, the phrase “the stereotype makes the stereotype” is proving to be true for both the populations of soldiers and the referenced “dependas.”

    -The more people feed into the hype, the more true the problem will become.

  5. I had been living in the military community all my life pretty much and I can say that these wives don’t get any better. Social media is not Google or a doctor, it’s not a great way to ask others what they should do when their child falls down the stairs or if they have a temp of 103 degrees. It’s not sexy to wrap yourself in the flag and post it for everyone to see. It’s not appropriate to use the uniform to show your cleavage and lady bits and shoot pics of it. These pages were created not to bully anyone, they were created to show others that the behaviors of these wives are not ok. It is sad that the soldiers don’t do or say anything to those wives who make them look like jackasses. Don’t do things to embarrass your husband or the military and you won’t be in those pages, simple as that.

  6. Dear Dependapotamus Spouses…oh, you know who you are,

    Military families don’t deserve special treatment. Why don’t you fight for “family discounts” for the FBI, police, firefighters, CIA, etc? Most of the members there face real danger everyday. The biggest danger I face as an active duty member at home station? Having to watch out for you because you can’t drive in a foreign country. Watch a buddy bleed out. Hear grown men cry for their mother with their last breath. Try to comfort a screaming child that has been shot as you carry his stretcher into a hospital. Be the shoulder they cry on because they can’t go home and tell you about the horrors they’ve seen because you are too worried about bitching to him about how hard it was to take care of your sex trophies while he was gone. Not all military spouses are like this, and there are quite a few that are awesome…but take a good hard look at yourself before you bitch about lines at the hospital, about having to let military members go before you during the lunch hours at the commissary, and thinking that you deserve the same treatment as the military member. What do you ACTUALLY do? Nothing. That’s why you get called out by the “hunters”.

  7. Angie you are the typical dependa. I noticed your profile has to say what your mommy or daddy did in the Air Force followed by your officer husband. Guess what, you wanna have some credibility in the military try serving. Until then quit encouraging other dependas. If you have ever actually read the posts on those sites and read the questions or statements these women write you to would shake your head. I’ve served I can say how hard it is my sister is currently serving. Women here want to make it about feminism? Sorry won’t work. Dependas don’t serve. They don’t say good bye to their children when going on deployment, they don’t face the harsh realities of real military life. However they will be the first to complain when they don’t get a free meal on Veterans Day. And 9% of the sample study how about we bring to light every 23 minutes a veteran kills themselves. Let’s focus on the real tragedy then over some women who seek drama and complain online. Then cry when they get their feelings hurt.

    1. Vanessa, my life experiences have been built within the military community and I know of no other way to share that experience other than by calling myself a military wife or a military child. It doesn’t mean my experience is limited to that alone, but it is a huge part of who I am. Are you suggesting that I never write about that life experience? That I never share my military life at all? For you, this might sound very sad, but if I did that, I would have very little to write about. For me, it’s not so sad at all. I have lived in 6 different places as a military child and a 12 as a military wife. All of those places and the people I have met because of those travels have made me who I am today. And you want to take all that away because you don’t like me using the words or claiming a title.

  8. I’m a military spouse and like several of those pages, not because I like to bully people or call them names, but because of the things some military wives/girlfriends post. When you see a picture of two positive pregnancy test postet to a milit. installation page saying “make this GI yours forever, $50 each” you seriously wonder. We are proud military spouses and people like that upset us

  9. I’m a veteran and now married to a military member. Although, I find some of theses pages to be comical (OSMW is my favorite), quite a bit of them are grasping for straws for pure and cruel entertainment. The classical “if you don’t like our page, don’t look at it”, defense is completely hypocritical. When you take screen shots of an overweight woman at the commissary just to ridicule her, how about you take your own advice: if you don’t like it, don’t look at it. Seriously, being fat makes someone a dependa? What about the overweight service members? I have seen a ton (no pun intended), of overweight service members.

    I also find that the majority of the followers to said pages are dependents themselves. Calling each other “c*nts, b*thes, fat whores”, the list goes on. Really ladies, really? What an educated and well articulated response to get your point across. You’re really helpful.

    There are those spouses who totally abuse the system, and do cross the line on a daily basis. On Veteran’s Day, one spouse actually thanked me for being a “Veteran Army Wife”. Instead of blasting her on social media, I set the record straight immediately (gasp, you can do that)!? Or the spouse who downed on female veterans claiming how they were all *** (oops, she forgot I too served). Needless to say, my response wasn’t welcomed when I informed her that I highly doubted any of the female soldiers wanted her husband.

    I am a veteran and I never ask for discounts, a free meal, or complain about my husband’s superiors and threaten to call his chain of command. I feel that it is important that we find our own identity and thrive to be “independent”, but work as a team with our spouse (no matter our spouses occupation). I think both sides are guilty of ignorance and stupidity.

    -Observations from a veteran and “dependent”.

    1. My husband buys me an official ball cap from his command to wear because he knows I like to wear hats. People have thanked me for my service and I quickly refer them to my husband as the person who is active duty. He regularly says “youre the one with the harder job..you pick up all the pieces at home when Im not here.” As long as thats how he wants to view it Im ok with it, but he is the one that should get the credit not me, in my book.

      1. How do you think you would feel if your photo was snapped in that hat and shared on one of these forums for folks to poke fun at you?

        And how would your husband feel?

        It’s minor, but it’s a step in a process that can get very scary. And for some spouses, it has gotten there.

        1. See, this comment right here is proof that you don’t know what you’re writing about.

          It’s a hat. To any observer, she could be a random civilian, spouse, vet, or active duty member of the military. They have no way of knowing unless they talk to her–when they do, they’ll see that she’s not a “dependa”.

          Show me just 1 post from any of the pages you listed that’s just a picture of someone wearing a hat as she described. Just 1.

  10. Oh, I love the “woe is us” military spouse posts. Listen up, sweethearts. There are plenty of spouses that make themselves look bad voluntarily. Cheating on their husbands, spending their pay checks, doing shady things to other spouses, complaining about their spouses and overall being an embarrassment to society. They definitely bring it on themselves, or do you condone such behavior as being acceptable and not up for ridicule?
    I’d like to point out that OSMW does more good than harm. They have gotten suicidal service members in touch with friends and mental health providers. They set up assistance to help a veteran in need move. They CONSTANTLY post asking for help for animals in abusive situations. They even searched for a certain type of pajamas for a mother who lost her babies so she could make a blanket out of the onesies they wore before they passed. And you’re saying they’re a terrible page? How about you actually do research, see what they do and maybe then you’d change your tune.

    1. Hey Shiloh,

      I am in the process of researching this page as many of you here feel OSMW is doing more harm than good. I just wish the administrator of this page wasn’t hiding. Who is “Six”? Why do you have to hide. That makes me nervous.

      Thanks for your post,
      Danya

      1. Because it is prudent. OPSEC. Six is active duty, and likely couldn’t POSSIBLY care less what makes you nervous.

        Social media pages are sites that echo the opinions of their members, not their hosts. The admin of a Facebook page or group is merely a facilitator to the First Amendment rights of like-minded individuals…the same rights that Angie seeks to inhibit when she encourages you to hold an intervention. She bemoans those members as quasi-terrorists…ironically, conducting the same sort of attack on those people and rallying a cause against them (they are dangerous and out to harm others…really??) .

        Why do you “wish the administrator wasn’t hiding”? Do you have some personal interest in their identity? An axe to grind, perhaps? Looks like casing a target, better call the FBI…

        Maybe you’re understanding why Six has to “hide” (read: remain wisely anonymous). Duh.

        1. I find this actually hilarious – OPSEC for a facebook group that doesn’t seem to worry about exposing military families to broader attention on the internet.

    2. Shiloh,
      Milso’s are NOT the only spouses that cheat! Nor are they the only spouses that spend whole checks, or even empty out whole bank accounts. And they most definitely are NOT the only spouses to complain about their spouses! So, please tell me how these things that you’ve claimed are “being an embarrassment to society”. Please, educate me.

      I had little to no issue with OSMW, when it began, as it was humorous. Now, the page is overrun with the typical “dependa”, tho! For every post made, there are 50+ comments from people claiming how they would never do that. Or the posts are just downright bullying because someone is overweight and the others are so damn insecure about themselves that they want to AASUME that the object of the photo isn’t doing anything to lose weight. And so what if they aren’t?! Is that anyone’s business but theirs and their loved ones? Not mine! Not you’d! Then move on! Some of the posts on OSMW are still decent and I will forever love Six and her posts, but I think you may be misunderstanding OSMW, and Six.

  11. The reason they don’t target the male spouses would be because we are not drama-filled whiners. We keep our heads down, support our spouses without creating a scene, and live our lives. Many of the female spouses I see on post are drama llama’s.

    1. Truth! I am a veteran and my wife wanted to stay in. The reason the men don’t get attacked is for the above reason, and because we still contribute unlike many of the females. I was an mp when I was in so I saw a lot of military families up close. A lot of spouses don’t work, and the house is still disgusting. Then you get the spouses that make the excuse about the kids. I have a son, he goes to daycare and I have a job. Not hard. If these spouses would quit being lazy, there would be no issue. Or hunters.

  12. im sorry, these dependa’s you are speaking of? They are trying to get free stuff for being married to a military member. They are upset when they don’t get military discounts their spouses get.

    They deserve to be called out. Hopefully they change their ways.

    1. Could it POSSIBLY be that theifare conscientious of spending their husband’s hard-earned money therefore they ask if a certain place offers a discount to save money?

      I’m not defending all MilSpouses because some are quite ridiculous but there are a few things I myself will ask for military discount on. I certainly don’t get upset if it isn’t given, however. It shows my husband that I respect how hard he works by trying hard to NOT spend as much of his money.

  13. By writing this article you’re part of the problem as well. I loathe people who are quick to cry about these pages. Some of these pages you have mentioned are evil but I know that USAWTM and OSMW may poke fun, but they have also helped those in neeed. But no one wants to mention the good just the bad.

    1. Hello None us,

      I am actually in the process of checking out OSMW and USAWTFM. Many of you here feel they are doing more good than harm. I just wish the administrators of these pages weren’t hiding. It makes me nervous to hear they are soliciting advice and we don’t know their background. Are they LMFT, LCSW, LPCC, etc? If you can help, please send your thoughts.

      Thanks,
      Danya

      1. Six is a nickname given to her while she served. All you have to do is message her to find out about her. She hides her “to” name because someone was stalking her kid. So, she does great work, and I’ll gladly follow her lead. Even if she’s an Army vet.

      2. Why would Six need to have the alphabet soup behind her name to provide help to soldiers and spouses? The mere fact that people reach out to her for help instead of a licensed professional speaks volumes of her ability to empathize and take action. Being a licensed social worker doesn’t mean squat if you can’t build trust, and it’s obvious that people trust her enough to reach out to this complete stranger. And I wouldn’t interpret their lack of communication with you as hiding; they most likely just don’t give a damn about your opinion. ✌️

  14. I’m sorry but I have been in this military world longer then I like to say (give my age away..lol) But all this says is you need to get thicker skin and stop being so whiny. I’m a nurse and there are sites on nurses, my father a lawyer, I’m sure you know those jokes.
    Get over it, grown up, move on lady!

    1. Amy, I’m not so worried about my thick skin. But I do worry about the community as a whole. I think we are better than this. The response to the article has been heartening and many people who did not know this kind of shaming was taking place are starting to pay more attention. I believe, maybe somewhat optimistically, that we do a lot more good by supporting each other rather than by pulling each other down. Hope you decide to join those of us wanting to make the internet a better place for military families (and everyone else).

  15. *wonders how many of you woke up in the middle of the night that stopped someone being one of the 22. Or helped a disabled vet move? Or donated funds to a military related cause? Taken time to help someone personally that you owe absolutely nothing to?*Oh that’s cute. And before you ask how do I know they actually happened, I was that person she owed nothing to at all and helped me. Plus she provided essential entertainment when I was beyond stressed out dealing with life.

    1. Alaina, that is commendable that Six helped you and I am glad you got the help you needed. However, because she helps many people are we to look away from the hatred she instigates and spreads? Many many people do leave their homes in the middle of the night to help a friend, donate money/time to military and non-military causes/charities, help disabled vets and regular civilians move, work free kitchens and collect much needed items for those less fortunate. They don’t wrap it with a big dose of hatred and filth and certainly don’t need the accolades Six seems to. They do it for others and not for the pats on the back attempting to justify the true nature of that FB page. Six formed an opinion of me by my comments on this blog. She doesn’t know me but that is exactly what her page does. An unhappy person or Six herself will take a picture or FB post about/from someone and then share it to OSMW for all to make fun of. They don’t know that person but by that one picture/FB post, they have formed an opinion of that person and then proceeded to tear them apart publicly. But I guess it’s all Ok because she helps some people, right?

  16. So here’s my deal. I won’t defend these pages because I like the things that they post. I will defend them because I like the things that they do. Well, I’ll defend 2 of these pages. We will start with OSMW. Have any of you ever seen six in action? That’s the creator… that bitch has rallied people from her page together to help needy vets and spouses that are going through rough patches more times than you can count. She’s talked people down from the ledge just through fb messanger. She’s been able to do these things because of her page. The fact that so many people feel comfortable enough to reach out to her when they feel like they can’t do the same with anyone else should say something to you. Now lets talk about us army wtf moments. They use their page to raise money for homeless and needy vets all over the country. They do a damn good job of it too. The things they post on their page might not be “clean fun” for lack of a better term but it catches the attention of hundreds of thousands of people. That’s the point. The more attention they get, the more help our military community gets.

    1. Hey Amanda,

      Thank you for your reply. I am looking into OSMW as we speak. Many of you are saying “Six” does great things. My question is, “Who is Six?” Is she a licensed clinical psychologist? Is she a social worker? I am just concerned that no one knows who this person really is. I feel like she or he is hiding behind their FB page. Hiding doesn’t feel right to me. Help me understand.

      As for U.S. Army WTF Moments, I have to be completely honest. I have never heard of any of these sites until yesterday. My husband has been in the service for 20 years next month and I have been along for the ride the entire time. I must have my head buried in the sand, because this topic is like a wildfire! I will look into their page as well.

      Thank you for the insight,

      Danya

      Thanks,
      Danya

      1. “I have never heard of any of these sites until yesterday. My husband has been in the service for 20 years next month and I have been along for the ride the entire time. I must have my head buried in the sand, because this topic is like a wildfire!” So you just made your observations on a whim and a couple of hours of internet surfing? That certainly explains quite a bit about your post.

        1. Hello LJ,

          I did not write the piece. I only posted it. I have been educated by the post and even further by the comments it has elicited.

          Have a great night,
          Danya

  17. Do your research on the pages. Don’t look at one or two posts and deem them evil.

    When a vet needs help, when one is missing, when there is a shooting incident on base. Some of the pagest listed are more help than the news. When someone wants her husband to get THOUSANDS of happy birthday messages these pages help. When someone needs to move, or a pregnant spouse (say it ain’t so) needs help unloading after a pcs, some of these pages help.

    Yes they poke fun of people doing dumb things. Yes military members are also poked fun at Too. If you do something dumb don’t post it to the Internet. Use google before you ask a fb group. Do cheat. Don’t lay naked on the ground in an American flag. It’s not a photo prop. Don’t cut up a uniform for a fashion statement. Men and women die in it. Show respect to them.

    1. Yes! Truth. Some of these pages are for good laughs, especially the common sense screenshots that leave you thinking…”WTF did I just read?!” but when it comes down to someone in serious need, those pages pull together, as do their followers and make a great outcome from a seemingly dire event. Other than that, it’s satire on social media. Don’t want to get bashed? Get rid of your internet. Problem solved.

  18. There is an easy typo to be made with the word “Dependa.” So I’m now going to only call them Depends, because they’re FOS.

    Thank you, Soldier Spouses.

  19. The reason these sites exist it’s because the scummy group of people they make fun of is a real thing. I watched one of my best friends get his checking account drained dry by his dependa wife while she never paid bills and apparently let her dogs starve to death and also screwed a different service member. All while he was gone overseas. I don’t know about other sites, because I’m not on them, but OSMW does not deserve to be there. Yeah, they call military wives out on their ridiculous behavior, but they also rally people together to help people move, provide emotional support to those who need it, make sure the military folks in the barracks don’t have to celebrate a Christmas alone, help suicidal vets, and generally bring people together.

    1. Hey Amanda,

      I am currently looking into OSMW. They just may need to be removed from the post.

      Thanks you for your response,
      Danya

      1. No, they don’t need to be removed from this post. Yes, that page has helped many but in comparison to the negative it spews, it’s not redeeming enough. I fully think if Six is so helpful which she seems to be on some level then my advice is to separate the trash and the treasure. Move the good deeds to a different page and keep the trash off it. But as it stands now, OSMW certainly warrants being on this list.

  20. When OSMW first started more than a few years ago it was a nasty page. The person who ran it was really hateful and went out of her way to make fun of people. The woman who is over the page now is a lot better. It doesn’t seem to be nearly as bad as it once was. But, to each her own opinion!

    1. It was quite nasty when it first started and it has toned down a lot. Though, Six has always been running it (unless another Six took over).
      She still does just as much harm as she does good. I have met quite few women who have been hurt by that specific page. It absolutely needs to stay on here.

  21. We are reviewing all comments – anything that is vulgar, uses profanity, threatening or we deem inappropriate WILL be removed. Yes – you are entitled to your opinions – but they will not be published on here if they are deemed inappropriate. Thank you for your understanding and consideration when posting. MOC team

  22. While I am a big advocate of getting rid of online bullying (when will people grow up?!?) and glad that some pages are being called out on their lewd and hateful behavior, I feel like some of these pages are getting a bad rap.
    OSMW for instance: do you see everything posted? Six, the creator, has done SEVERAL great things for those in the military community, including helping vets in need, gathering items for a grieving mother, and getting out awareness for PTSD. Yes, sometimes people are poked fun at, mainly because of their outlandish, self entitled behavior. But to act as though no one here has ever chuckled at someone acting a fool seems a bit hypocritical.
    I firmly believe the whole “dependa” fad needs to stop. If you work out in a gym on base and aren’t in perfect form, you’re a dependa to some. Same if you don’t go to the gym. (Just an example of one thing I heard this week… But I take little stock in what a 20 year old narcissist has to say about a stranger) Some people will always be full of hate and no manner of changing our behavior will help that. But I don’t like that Six, or OSMW, is being called a bully. That page is far from being the hatemonger you claim it to be. So, please, before bashing a page, do a little more research!

    1. Hey Sara,

      Thank you for this post. I, myself, am going to check out OSMW. It seems there are quite a few people commenting that MOC may have missed the boat on OSMW.

      Have a great day,
      Danya

      1. While checking out OSMW, I would also suggest checking out USAWTFM. They don’t deserve to be on this list, either. They aren’t like the others listed. At all.

  23. This article cherry picked ideas and comments to support the writer’s point of view. It is biased. The statistics displayed and quoted studies are very narrowed tailored to support her idea. You are supposed to quote references and give the reader the bibliography for him/her to confirm your extracted info. The suicide part unjustifiable leads the reader to believe that a suicidal person’s decision to proceed MUST be blamed on social media. This is a topic that surely needs to be highlighted but not this way. Please try again.

  24. As a former Army officer, and a female, I can say with certainty that the amount of time being wasted on dependent behavior and the predictable backlash is about as assinine as anything I’ve seen. If you don’t want to be made fun of, get your proverbial “fecal matter” together. Most of all, stop whining. Stop being weak. Nobody owes you a thing. If you want respect, behave in a way that garners respect. The military is the penultimate of pack behavior. Stray but a bit from the ideal, and the pack will turn on you until you learn better behavior. If you don’t like it, leave the pack. Seriously, please leave and stop being an embarrassment to those that strive to make the military family shine out as a role model for all that is great about our country.

    1. Leave the pack. Like get a divorce from your active duty spouse?

      That is the solution for many. But it isn’t just easy to walk away.

      And it’s not as if the dependa label is used only against those that supposedly fit the true dependa stereotype. People know little about me. Yet I’ve been called a typical dependa here for sharing an opinion and backing it with facts. And I see it happening all over the internet to military spouses who did nothing more than talk about life within the military community.

      Be prepared for more embarrassment. Many of us will be speaking out over the next few weeks and this topic isn’t going away soon.

  25. The pages make fun of spouses who wear their militarty spouses rank. If you play stupid games, you get stupid rewards. OSMW and USAWTFM are awesome. If the term “dependa” doesnt apply to you, then dont worry about it.

    1. And why does anyone feel the NEED to make fun of others for any reason? If you see someone do or say something you don’t agree with, move on. Why belittle them?

      1. Because in the military community there are expected standards of behavior. Some people either weren’t raised to understand common decency, or choose to behave inappropriately. If they wish to not be ridiculed, then they should modify their behavior. Or leave the community. The military has a mission. That mission isn’t to coddle the hurt feelings of entitled spouses.

        1. There is an “expected standard of behavior” and yet belittling others is part of that standard of behavior? Mature adults and many children know that teasing, belittling and calling out those who choose differently are NOT a proper and respectful form of behavior.

        2. See LJ – that’s exactly the problem.

          On the one hand, military spouses shouldn’t claim the title or the role or the position, etc. Yet, there are standards of behavior they must meet. Don’t you think that is more than a little hypocritical?

          1. Hypocritical? Not at all.

            When I was a kid and my mom would introduce me to her coworkers and bosses, I was expected to give them a good impression, but I had absolutely no claim to her job title.

            When I visited a base with my high school’s Junior ROTC unit, I had absolutely no right to claim any rank or privilege, but I was still expected to be respectful.

            A military community is a community. Part of being a member of a community, or even a society in general, is having responsibilities, including behaving appropriately in certain situations. Fulfilling that requirement doesn’t grant you the right to anything that you didn’t already have the right to.

            When I go to a wedding, I’m expected to bring a gift, go through a receiving line, and understand how to navigate the social situations without making anyone uncomfortable. But doing that doesn’t grant me the right to dub myself the groom and go home with the bride.

            I’m not sure how you can even come close to calling it hypocritical that one is required to exhibit appropriate behavior while not entitled to lay claim to someone else’s work product (and someone’s rank and title is their work product).

  26. As a female veteran and military spouse, I disagree with all six points of your dependapotamus definition. A dependa is not someone who advocates for their spouse, or is proud of their service; this is the majority of military spouses.

    A dependa is a spouse that yells at and threatens an E-2 at the gate for not saluting her, in accordance with her husband’s rank.
    A dependa is a spouse that expects the military to pay for her travel to visit family.
    A dependa sells and/or buys positive pregnancy tests to trap a military husband.
    A dependa sleeps around while her husband is deployed.
    A dependa wants the military to pay for a housekeeper to clean her government housing, though she has no job.

    As an officer’s wife, I’m willing to bet you have pulled your husband’s rank once or twice in your life. “Dependa hunters” don’t go after those that advocate for military spouses, they point out the self-entitlement that the 1% of spouses exhibit, thereby making the rest look bad. The entire premise of your article is based on the stereotype that all military wives are dependas, when most fans of these pages are spouses themselves.

    1. Another article recently published at Military Spouse Magazine says that in today’s environment, all military spouses are wearing a big scarlet “D” on their chests unless they somehow prove otherwise to a judge and jury (folks like you). I just sort of wonder when it became your job to judge the behavior of other military spouses? And how do you find the time for it? Isn’t it tiring work? Do you get paid for it? And who told you that you could stop wearing the that scarlet letter “D”? Maybe more of us could join your club so that we could go around without our letters as well.

      http://militaryspouse.com/milspouse/the-military-spouse-guilty-until-proven-innocent/

      1. Maybe you shouldn’t be citing a military spouse ‘magazine’ as a resource…

        The fact of the matter is there are people who feel entitled to something everywhere, not just within the military community. The ‘dependa’ term is just geared toward those spouses who feel entitled to XYZ just because their husband is in the military, and then go off their rocker when they aren’t treated accordingly. This says more about us as a society than it says about the military community. People are people, no matter what they do or where they live. I’m sick of the entitlement attitude from EVERYONE.

    2. I think part of it is a question of what “advocate” means in this context.

      To speak for the spouse? Maybe, could go either way.

      But I think most of them take it to mean “Calling up the chain of command when the spouse is delayed on base and late for dinner”.

      More “overbearing parent in grade school” than “supporter”.

      Same thing goes for what “proud of their service” means. When discussing the “dependa” that usually means “Can’t go 2 seconds without talking about it and mentions it as though they share some of the credit”. Again, more “overbearing parent” than “supporter”.

  27. This is one of the most poorly written articles I have ever read. Looks like anyone can be an “author” now. You clearly have no clue what military culture is and you do not know what the definition of a dependa is. Your bio is comical. You have a broad military background? You dont. Want one? Join the military and serve. YOU ARE A CIVILIAN. This mosh of words you threw together makes you a dependa in the highest degree.

    Thanks for a fresh list of sites to follow!

  28. Since you deleted my previous comment, and the excellent comment of another female combat veteran, I am going to post it again!

    I have been the soldier, and the spouse at home. Being a spouse at home is NOT hard, it is NOT something to continually beg for pity and attention and special treatment over. The entitled attitude of spouses is disgusting. If you want the “benefits” of military service, stop indiscriminately reproducing for five seconds and join up yourself. Otherwise, get an education, get a real job, and stop being an embarrassment to the entire military community.

    Military families are highly visible, and dependas are absolutely ruining the image of the military. Their lack of self-respect and desecration of the uniform under the guise of “patriotism” or “pride” is inexcusable! They consistently put their noses where it doesn’t belong, whether in their neighbor’s business or contacting their husband’s chain of command. In no other profession on earth would this be acceptable behavior, and I have no idea why dependas think they are entitled to act that way. The majority of military wives are such an embarrassment that soldiers and veterans refuse to interact with them at all. The only spouses with whom I associate are all veterans too, with the exception of a few.

    Get off your high horse. Being a military brat tag chaser does NOT mean you know anything about serving in the military. Military spouses need a serious reality check.

    1. She is deleting comments that are at all critical of her work, or point out the lack of evidence used in formulating her post. Don’t let anything like logic get in the way here. By all means, just delete anything negative. We wouldn’t want to have real journalism get in the way of blogging.

      1. Actually, I have no control over the comments. I am responsible only for the article as written and any comment written by “Angie.”

        Military One Click has decided to delete any comment with profanity. Dam# the luck. You and I will have to communicate by using clean language I guess.

    2. I agree with SOME of your comments, but its not just dependas who are ruining the image of the military. There are plenty of active duty who do that just fine themselves- although not the majority (just as the majority of wives arent dependas either).
      Suddenly being at home alone is hard…but its not insurmountable. I know very few spouses who are actively seeking attention or special treatment but then I dont know alot of people outside of my husbands commands either. BTW, I wish I HAD the capability to reproduce indiscriminately…I only want one or two kids but thats not happening naturally. And..again I only know a few spouses who have large families.
      The benefits we have had from his military service have been wonderful and allowed me to get a second career education and get a job I love. Most of my friends from his ship are actively taking classes…how awesome is that?
      Maybe it has to do with having been an EMT/FF for 20 yrs but I carry myself in a way so as not to cause embarrassment to my husband or his command. The people I associate with do the same. Unless what my neighbor/friend is posting is a threat to OPSEC or my husbands or another sailors safety I leave it be. Id love to sit down and have a cup of coffee with you…as long as you dont mind me wearing the ships ball cap that HE gave me to wear.

    3. I’m with you on being sick of the entitled attitude some spouses have. It drives me crazy, and I’m a spouse too. But I do have to disagree that being home isn’t hard, because it is. Is it as hard as being the one who’s gone? No, it’s definitely not. I think the two are incomparable. Being home alone with kids 24/7 isn’t easy, it’s taxing. It’s a whole new kind of difficult and tired. Being worried about your spouse during deployment isn’t easy. BUT it’s not the hardest thing in the history of the world, either.

  29. Great post! The vitriol and hatred spewed by some folks on these pages (and even in some of the comments on here) is just mindboggling.

    1. Please keep your identity secret because I’ve seen Six’s minions literally go after those that disagree with her or her page. I’ve seen the messages some have sent victims urging them to kill themselves or threaten to harm them. It’s disgusting.

      1. Thank you for your concern Robin,

        It wouldn’t be in her best interest to go after any of us here at MilitaryOneClick. I hope the entire administration at OSMW can remain professional as I believe we have here.

        Danya

      2. Bekah Galloway, no where did I say spouses of military service members should be treated any differently than any other spouse of any profession. What I disagree with is the going out of one’s way to trash, harass, bully (yes it is bullying) and downright reprehensible behavior that is exhibited online. I noticed a woman named Ellie responded to Sixs comment about me. Many of Sixs followers then started to trash her and make comments about her being a troll then deleting her comment. Ellie did NOT delete her comment. Six blocked her from posting because that is what Six does. If someone posts a reply directly to her with a criticism Six blocks them. She can shovel it but certainly doesn’t have the thick skin she wants everyone to think she has. How’s that for being mature!?

  30. I will be unfollowing Military One Click, along with countless other people, for posting this nonsense garbage.

    I will be following OSMW, Dear Dependa II and USAWTFM now though!

  31. Osmw has done alot to HELP people. Are you going to look threw every single post that they have made and see that the admin is a boss ass bitch and would call masses together to sit here and help a veteran move because he is physically unable to do alot himself!! Or better yet Help Me – a army wife who was being harassed by another army wive who was pretending to be fbi and threatening to have our “spouses” get in trouble – this women who was pretending keep it going for weeks and six (osmw admin ) shut her down . Soooo also my question are you gonna go after stolen valor and all the other sites and pages that “harass” others. Basically what i am saying is 99.999 percent of these fb pages sites etc do alot of good . As long as your not a dumbass who is entitled these “bullies” would help you out if its something they can talk you threw or point you in a right direction.

  32. Wow, the lack of research you have done on this article is a shame to the journalism world as well as the military spousal support world. Did you even take a second to actually look at OSMW or U.S. ARMY WTF MOMENTS? I say this with the observation that you did not, because if you had you would have correct facts and information on both of these pages. So unfortunately your readers are being greatly misinformed about both.
    Which I’m sure if you had posted all of the information that you so clearly did not read, and if you did chose not to report, which then I believe becomes misinformation maybe even slander, you would see that OSMW is actually ran by a woman who has a deep sense of love for dependents and spouses of our service members, a page that helped a veteran with cancer in another state move, as well as another veteran move by simply posting stating they need help. OSMW has as well as helped wives/husbands through deployments of their military spouses and helped with the after shock of ptsd and the transitioning from service to civilian. Yes there is fun had from time to time, but do you honestly not have a negative thought about the wife who is cheating on her war zone deployed husband, or the wife who berated a PFCs wife because her husband is a butter bar, well guess what that PFCs wife now won’t go to any of the support meetings with the unit and ends up having a deployment breakdown and doesn’t have the backup of OSMW or ARMYWTF because you misinformed and did not do your duty of informed and intellegent reporting. So this new mom, or not quite yet a mom goes home and kills herself, or the deployed service member receives the news about his adulterous spouse has a breakdown and goes awol or commits suicide. Yes it’s that serious, you seem to like to throw statistics around without all of the Information as well that you don’t have all of the stats on, two articles and not fully reporting what they said is not responsible. Did you take that into account. Yes there are sites out there who are bullying and who are fat shaming, these two I have mentioned are not them. Yes there are people who take it to far, these people exsist in all of society. But unfairly reporting has done the most damage of any.

    1. We need lots more good in this world, that is for sure. But must the good come with the hate? Is it really necessary?

      Six could do good works without tearing down a good part of the military community. In fact, she could probably harness a good part of the milspouse community to help but instead, she has alienated it. I cannot support her page nor her activity. And as more people learn about how the page actually works, I’m sure they won’t either. In fact, I would love to see an in depth story on OSMW. It would include how the original page, Overly Sensitive Military Wives, was deleted from Facebook. And could explain how the page is managing to not only survive, but thrive, today.

    2. Six has a deep sense of love for dependents??? Her page doesn’t offend me nearly as much as some of the others but THAT is a stretch!

  33. OSMW really doesn’t belong on here. When Six says something wrong, she retracts and updates. She digs to the bottom of her stories as much as she can, also. She helps many people and supports, while calling out the the idiots. Honestly, I’ve learned how to be a better military spouse because of it. I know what mistakes NOT to make. Please take OSMW off of here.

  34. As a member of the military for 15 years now, I have seen the full spectrum of what people call “dependas” and military spouses. I feel intense pride when I see military spouses staying true to their servicemember, supporting them through multiple deployments, and keeping things down back at home. That is an incredibly tough job, and no one should belittle them for that. However, there is an entirely different class of military spouse, and I believe those are whom the bulk of sites are calling out. I have also seen servicemembers being called out on these sites for similar behavior. I absolutely do not agree with the hate speech, or belittling someone for being overweight, etc. However, I still think these sites are fabulous for multiple reasons. They have helped servicemembers and their families on multiple occasions, and calling out the shady/suspect behaviors actually helps young servicemembers and wives who don’t know better realize that “I am leaving on a super secret mission and I can’t have a phone” might mean something else.

  35. For one, OSMW and the people who run/follow it do FAR MORE good for the military community than you state. In fact, you don’t state at all and of the good that is done. When someone needs help that page rallies together better than any other group I have seen. Six makes sure that soldiers do not spend a holiday alone, she advocates help for those with PTSD and may be suicidal. She would go out on a limb for service member or spouse if she finds a need! Shame on you for your poorly researched “article”
    Second, the term “bully” is used FAR too much and has lost its real meaning! It is the internet, you don’t like what you read then move on. No one forces anyone to join those pages. If you choose to comment then people “turn” on you because they do not agree with you, that does not make anyone a bully. Making blanket statements about people does not make the commenter a bully. To those who take it personal really need to get off the internet!! You don’t like what you read, scroll past it. People should not have to stop voicing their opinions because someone does not like it. Its simple, don’t read it. Just like everything else wrong in this country, because you don’t like it and think its “mean” it has to change. Bull!

    1. A post, a picture, an article, a screenshot from a private forum gets shared on OSMW and the hate leaks back to the original site. OSMW needs to accept responsibility for being a part of that. It’s not as if they are a private forum where everything is kept under wraps. They are public and everything that happens there can be shared. If only they respected the privacy of other forums and didn’t post screenshots of comments meant for a private audience.

      1. This is the internet and most everything comes from a FB group. These are not top secret pages. ANYONE can join a “private” group. We are not talking about DOD/CIA/FBI information getting leaked. Admins of pages and commenters are not talking on a secure encrypted line with valuable information. Please stop the insanity of thinking that ANYTHING on a FB page is and should be private! No matter what the setting of a group is! I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around your comment. They teach in ELEMENTRY school now how fast things spread when posted on-line. Are you not smarter than a 5th grader? Get out of here with that STUPID response!!!!

        1. Private and secret groups are finding their information “leaked” to groups like OSMW and Dear Dependa II. And yes, those groups have settings that prevent their posts from being seen by the general public. That’s exactly why Facebook designed them that way. That means someone within the group is sharing private information. It’s sad that adults can’t allow a private forum to discuss issues within that forum without sharing the information in a public one. Of course, we maybe dealing with adults by age, but by maturity people who share in this way are acting as if they are in junior high school. In today’s heightened security climate, this is a dangerous game. What will these people do when they learn that a terrorist organization is following their feed in order to find targets? Just blame that on dependa behavior as well?

  36. Your blog made it on OSMW. of course 6 attempted to deflect all of the negative that they do and say by pointing out a few of the good things that they have done. Apparently she is under the impression that as long as you do a couple of good things it’s okay to poke fun at others. It’s almost as if its okay that a dependa got so depressed that she contemplated suicide because we actually helped a veteran step back from the suicide ledge so it’s all OK in our book. I’m fairly certain that no one on that page is specially 6 has never heard the rule for every negative thing said or done it takes at least six positive things said or done in order to erase it or at least lessen the harmful effects. It’s sad that in her post on osmw regarding this blog of yours she states that they’ve done all this wonderful stuff but where are you when all of this wonderful stuff is happening she doesn’t understand that people in this world do good things they just don’t go out there and advertise and shout it to the world and toot their own horn in order to get a little pat on the back. Six is extremely narcissistic and in need of attention at all costs. Thank you for this article, it was spot on, eye opening and I only hope it reaches more people’s hearts so the trashing of others may lessen, as we know it will never stop as long as people who post and live vicariously through trash social media.

  37. I’m glad OSMW made this article! Yes, Six may have help a few people out but what about the hundreds she has gotten harrased? Ok, so they’re dependas. And? Your life doesn’t revolve around a bumper sticker or a pt shirt. Or dose it? The people that comment on OSMW are ridiculous. I hope she gets her page shut down also Page O.

  38. I do not believe OSMW should be on this list. I realize you are going to look into it, but Six has done so much good. From helping a family friend when he was houes away from joining the 22. She started a 22needsyou campaign. She has helped locate missing soldiers. Cheered up soldiers that were cheated on, left for some new or higher ranking tag, helped raise money to save PTSD relief animals. She hides her name to protect her adopted son from another cyber attack. You can attack her, call her names, even get her page shut down… but no one targets a 3 year old and use him as bait. my more favorite thing of hers as of late, is pointing out stolen valour! So there are people who need to be pointed out for their being stupid. But the good outweighs the bad.

  39. You completely changed several posts. What is wrong with you that you feel it is ok to snip another’s opinion so it can be taken out of context? Does that seem right?

  40. I was sitting here, reading through the comments, shaking my head, but not really taking sides. And then I started seeing a pattern to Angie’s responses. Angie, you became the very thing you wrote about- a hunter. The defenders of the sites you listed said “if you don’t be called one, don’t act like one”, a statement you disagreed with. And yet when an accused person resented being called a hunter, you used the exact same phrasing against him/her. Your responses have deteriorated to nothing more than “neener neener”. In my eyes, you just lost all credibility and benefit of the doubt. The thing is, since you are really no better than any of the groups you really against, you won’t care about my opinion, because you got what you wanted- a few likes, atta girls, and a whole lot of undeserved attention.

      1. No, the irony is that you’re no better than those you’re calling out, yet you’re somehow proud of it.

        You’re just playing one long game of “I know you are, but what am I?”

        You want to claim moral superiority? Then don’t partake in the behaviors that you’re rallying against.

  41. This article is beyond true. I am terrified of going on post for fear of being secretly having my picture taken for some reason and posted on one of those sites or posting a commentand then being harassed. I use to run a fb page with over 10, 000 users for laughs for army wives but I shut it down because in good conscience I couldn’t let women continue to bully each other any more. No I do not do any of the things listed but I feel for the women who are targeted because they do. I’m so tired of people bullying others over the internet.

  42. Loved this article. The best part was the list at the end. I’ve found Dear Dependa II to be pretty entertaining, but I had no idea any of the other ones existed. I will be sure to check them out!

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