DEERS Goof-Ups


KateKashman's comment here about replacing SSNs with a Service Number reminded me of a good story:

Is the military really capable of making this change across all their records? (Yes, I know they should be, but I am skeptical. The military's medical records system thinks I have 8 or 9 children. Seriously.)
It reminded me that a friend of mine has one of the funniest DEERS goof-up stories I've ever heard....

I wasn't aware of this until I had been married to the military for quite a while, but servicemembers' spouses are coded. Usually you encounter this during medical treatment. If you're the first wife (or husband), you will be coded as "30" + your spouse's SSN. If you're the second wife, you're "31", and so on. Anyway, my friend realized that DEERS had made a big mistake when a nurse said she didn't want to be nosy but she just HAD to ask..."You're your husband's ninth wife?" My friend is apparently mistakenly coded as "38"! She has tried to fix it, but to no avail.

And she thinks it's even more funny because she married her husband when he was 20 years old. He was a busy boy in his teen years!

So yeah, I'm with Kate: one would think the military could keep their records straight...but my friend's been trying for years to get the system to believe there weren't eight wives before her.

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