As plenty of Military company Members know, relationships v your teammates are a vital measure of performance. Nearby relationships identified by loyalty and shared values (often dubbed “cohesion”) aid teams communicate, stay motivated, and also perform well.

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But relationships that space “too close”—including any type of that are prioritized end the mission—can pains morale and overall performance. Any relationship that risks readiness or safety have the right to be a problem. While “too close” relationships can take place anywhere, you can be at also greater hazard if you"re deployed, particularly if you’re life in close quarters or isolated areas.

So exactly how close is as well close? The answer might depend on her branch’s policy. Take a look in ~ some various scenarios that aid explore the issue.


As it’s defined in the Uniformed password of armed forces Justice (UCMJ) under short article 134 of the Manual because that Courts-Martial (MCM), “fraternization” is a partnership that one of two people compromises the chain that command, outcomes in favoritism, reduces impartiality or undermines order and morale. Typically, it uses to unprofessional relationships between officers and enlisted personnel, yet it deserve to extend past rank too.

Fraternization is often thought about in the paper definition of romantic relationships across the officer-enlisted spread, but the policy consists of much an ext than that. Fraternization can use to nearby friendships, business relationships, or even particular financial exchanges in between Military service Members of various ranks, regardless of gender.

Since the paper definition of the connection is so important, it have the right to be difficult to recognize sometimes if fraternization is occurring. It’s essential to psychic fraternization isn’t around whether there’s a personal relationship between 2 world or between an officer and also someone who enlisted. That ultimately about maintaining order and whether or not your connection disrupts the standards for military functioning.


Even if she the same rank and not violating DoD regulations, romantic relationships with fellow Military service Members have the right to be tricky. Working v someone you romantically involved with have the right to distract friend from your duties. You can end up spending much less time developing your relationship with other teammates together you focus on her love life, which have the right to hurt team unity. Her relationship additionally can negatively impact the moral of those roughly you, specifically those that are likely separated from their loved ones throughout deployment. And also there’s always a danger that your relationship can end on negative terms, i m sorry could affect your capability to efficiently work together afterwards.

Sexual relationships

Another factor to consider is the impact of having a sexual connection with someone in her unit or also at your installation. When consensual sex in theatre isn’t prohibited, it have the right to lead come potentially an unfavorable effects ~ above readiness or morale. Extramarital sexual conduct and also sexual misconduct are all perhaps serious offenses outlined in short article 134 that the MCM as well. In some cases, these types of relationships amongst unit members have actually the potential come “sexualize” the work environment, make it difficult to continue to be mission-focused.

It’s also important to consider the result of pregnancy on readiness. The rate of unintended pregnancy among active-duty females is practically 50% better than your civilian counterparts. And also once a mrs becomes pregnant, she must be evacuated from theater immediately and also remain non-deployed because that the remainder of her pregnant plus a minimum the 6 month after pregnant ends. A teammate’s absence can influence unit readiness and morale.

Bottom line

A near bond with your unit members can build cohesion, make your team stronger, and also optimize your performance. It’s natural that world working together carefully might develop personal or also romantic connections. However if a connection (or its consequence) beginning to impact order and readiness, you might need come reevaluate the relationship.

Learn much more about the different branch policies:



Castro, C. A., Kintzle, S., Schuyler, A. C., Lucas, C. L., & Warner, C. H. (2015). Sexual attack in the military. Current Psychiatry Reports, 17(7). Doi:10.1007/s11920-015-0596-7

Cox III, W. T. (2007). Consensual sex crime in the equipped forces: A primer for the uninformed. Duke journal of sex Law & Policy, 14(2), 791–813. Recall 29 September 2020 native

Harrell, M. C., & Miller, L. L. (1997). New avenues for army women: impacts upon readiness, cohesion, and morale.

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retrieved 29 September 2020 indigenous Santa Monica, CA:

Rabie, N. Z., & Magann, E. F. (2013). Unintended pregnancies amongst US active-duty women. Women"s Health, 9(3), 229–231. Doi:10.2217/whe.13.21

Rovio, E., Eskola, J., Kozub, S. A., Duda, J. L., & Lintunen, T. (2009). Can high team cohesion be harmful? Small team Research, 40(4), 421–435. Doi:10.1177/1046496409334359

Wise, S. (2014). Deserve to a team have actually too lot cohesion? The dark next to network density. European administration Journal, 32(5), 703–711. Doi:10.1016/j.emj.2013.12.005

Wong, L., Kolditz, T. A., Millen, R. A., & Potter, T. M. (2003). Why lock Fight: Combat motivation in the Iraq War. Carlisle, PA: Strategic research studies Institute, U.S. Military War College. Re-cover 29 Septemner 2020 from