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Thinking of joining the armed forces.

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Fire2box

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If any of you don't know by now I am a "slacker". Right now I hold no job nor have I ever had a real one and I am living off of my dad's income. Anyways I actually have no idea what I want to do anymore and I been that way for quite some time. I don't really know what to do right now and it seems I would rather be told "Do ____, do ___". I guess I'd rather follow structure then go and do my own path.

So I been thinking about joining some part of the armed forces and I don't know which branch. However I do know I do not want to be put into a combative unit or situation. I would rather not be shipped far from home, but the odds of that happening I bet are slim.

In any case does anyone have any advice in general for people thinking about joining the armed services?

(Note: if I join and do get shipped off would it be possible to bring a small plushie. I'm actually serious too.)
 

Point

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I have no experience with the military, but I know that if you have any non-combative talents you should try going for those. Cooking, playing an instrument, medical care; all of these are things I would try to get into if I were forced to join the military.
 
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If any of you don't know by now I am a "slacker". Right now I hold no job nor have I ever had a real one and I am living off of my dad's income. Anyways I actually have no idea what I want to do anymore and I been that way for quite some time. I don't really know what to do right now and it seems I would rather be told "Do ____, do ___". I guess I'd rather follow structure then go and do my own path.

So I been thinking about joining some part of the armed forces and I don't know which branch. However I do know I do not want to be put into a combative unit or situation. I would rather not be shipped far from home, but the odds of that happening I bet are slim.

In any case does anyone have any advice in general for people thinking about joining the armed services?

(Note: if I join and do get shipped off would it be possible to bring a small plushie. I'm actually serious too.)
I don't think you can be quite so cavalier and call your own shots in the armed forces. When you join, you effectively become government property.

However, do the best you possibly can on the exams, get a good MOS, go for AIT, and hopefully you'll be able to land some sort of position that won't see combat duty.

I imagine you do not have a college degree. Given your description of yourself and where you are, I think that time in the armed forces would actually be better spent than time in college at this point.

I hope that you've talked with your dad. I think this is the right decision in your life (again, given this little bit I know about you) and I had a friend for whom the Army opened up a new world of opportunity. He was a 51-tango (combat engineer, I think), earned his mosquito/jump wings (for the extra pay each month), but he went in as an E4 ("Specialist") with his B.Sc. He served Stateside under a full-bird colonel and was a driver (wherever the officer went, my buddy drove him) as well as a planner (figuring out how to build bases, etc.).

All in all, it was a great gig, BUT he described the physical rigors of boot camp as "Boy Scout Camp". That jerk could run and run forever. I've never joined any Armed Service, but plenty of folks I have known have been through and got the t-shirt.

I would advise the following plan:
  • Tell your dad your plans now;
  • Train hard for the next 4 months. Focus on stamina and change-up your exercises and runs;
  • After 4 months, if you still feel the same, study for your exams and go sign up.
 

Fire2box

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I have no experience with the military, but I know that if you have any non-combative talents you should try going for those. Cooking, playing an instrument, medical care; all of these are things I would try to get into if I were forced to join the military.
I did want to be a clinical psychologist or something to that extent but that might just be due to having talking with them for nearly my whole life. I have talked to my dad about it and with everything else he takes everything like "okay", nothing phases that guy. Only time I can recall seeing him cry is when my sister died and when I told him her death can be considered his fault.

My mom doesn't seem to like the idea very much at all. My sister joined the marines but died in a accident even before she got to basic. My older brother is the only one who got into college but I am not sure if he ever got a degree, in any case even he doesn't have a job right now. But he always keeps going and always keeps looking up even if he suffers from bouts of depression.

Also right not exercise and just getting in shape seems to be a great idea, in general. Oh and thank you for the comments, they really have helped.
 
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I did want to be a clinical psychologist or something to that extent but that might just be due to having talking with them for nearly my whole life.
This sounds like something that you'd have to have prior training to do.

I'd advise looking up the code/designation (e.g. "51T") and then seeing what is required to land the position.
 
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If any of you don't know by now I am a "slacker". Right now I hold no job nor have I ever had a real one and I am living off of my dad's income. Anyways I actually have no idea what I want to do anymore and I been that way for quite some time. I don't really know what to do right now and it seems I would rather be told "Do ____, do ___". I guess I'd rather follow structure then go and do my own path.

So I been thinking about joining some part of the armed forces and I don't know which branch. However I do know I do not want to be put into a combative unit or situation. I would rather not be shipped far from home, but the odds of that happening I bet are slim.

In any case does anyone have any advice in general for people thinking about joining the armed services?

(Note: if I join and do get shipped off would it be possible to bring a small plushie. I'm actually serious too.)
I will give you some advice. I was in the army, a long time ago. First of all decide what kind of job you beforehand, not necessarily what job, but what kind. Just about any civilian job has a counterpart in the military, and in some cases the same requirements. In other cases the military will train you to do the job, including some that would normally require a college degree.

If you want a good high tech type job, I would recommend either the air force or navy. If you join the navy make sure that you get a guaranteed job, otherwise you will end up with what ever they want or need at the time.

Your chances of staying in the US aren't very good. Your chances of ending up in a combat zone if you do not have a combat MOS aren't very good either. Your chances of being killed are slim. If you have a noncombat job, your chances of injury or death are really slim.

There is a Mental Health specialty for enlisted personal.
68X--MENTAL HEALTH SPECIALIST
4C0X1 - MENTAL HEALTH SERVICE

Army Enlisted Jobs -- Main Menu
There is a list of army jobs.
Air Force Enlisted Job Descriptions and Qualification Factors
and Air Force.

The Navy has always confused me on how their jobs work though.

h3g3l has some good advice, and I would second it. If you are not in shape, get in shape even if all you do is run or even bicycle around. You don't have to worry much about strength, stamina is way more important.

Bringing a small plushie will not be a problem no matter where you are stationed. But you will have to be prepared for questions and some ridicule. You won't be able to hide that you have it. And don't even try to bring it to basic training.

You wouldn't believe what some people bring with them. I did feel a bit sorry for the woman whose vibrator got turned on at the bottom of her duffel bag. They had to cut off the lock and empty it out to find out what was buzzing in there. The bag was repacked, with the vibrator on top with a note on the removal of batteries to keep some things secret.
 
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Well, i wouldn't bring the plushie to boot. Or follow on training for that matter. When I was in A-School we had a guy in the barracks that was a furry. Now I'm an open minded kinda guy, but many of the guys in barracks were not. It didn't help that he got caught wearing his cat tail in uniform. I think he had some other issues, because he never even made it out of Great Mistakes, they tossed him out. It really kinda sucks, but I went completely dormant on the DL front for the first 5 years I was in. Only then did I have a place of my own where I could play in private.

But besides all that, the military has been a pretty good gig for me. I got to be stationed overseas, see a lot of the world, and I have a job that I can't get laid off from. If you arn't looking to walk around with a rifle, I'd look hard at the Navy or the Air Force. I can't speak to how hard core the Air Scouts are, but we generally mock the superman types in the Navy. And Navy jobs are not hard to figure out. Your job title is your job title. Yes, we only have 42 of them, but ratings are not as restricted as MOSs or other jobcodes. If you are an Electronics Technician in the Navy, you'll work or all kinds of stuff, like radios, radars, computers(navy computers, not PCs). If you are an F-16 Avionics Tech in the AF you'll work on F-16 Avionics (so I've been told, correct me if I'm wrong).
 

thad

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I think the Army was one of the better parts of my life, despite being in for a very short time (Medical out of OSUT the week of FTX grrr.) Anything you bring with you to basic you will have taken from you. They will provide a structure. Personally I have never been in a more supportive environment, but it's not a type of support you're used to finding in the civilian world. You will be brought down to tears.

That being said. If you're not ok deploying, don't join.
If you're not ok being shot at, don't join.
If you're not ok working under preasure, don't join.
If you're not ok being yelled at, and told you're the most worthless piece of crap on the planet, don't join.

If you can accept all of those, then take a look at it. It's one of the better things I ever did.

-- Thad.
 

Fire2box

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My dad got in the navy by choice when he was drafted and he never saw any real action. So I guess that could be a good choice for not combative deployment, not to mention everything in the middle east is land locked, right? :p

Anyways as for the plushie it would most likely get in my way at basic or get lost or stolen on deployment.
 

Skeeter

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I was in the Navy for 9 years as a Nuclear Electronics Technician.

For not seeing action, join the Navy or Air Force. If you join the Navy don't be a Corpsman (Medic) or CB (Seabee, or Construction Battalion) they can be on shore with the Marines. The advantage of the Navy is that advancement (i.e. the money you'll make) is easier than the that of the Air Force.

If I had to do my enlistment again, I'd join the Air Force. But, from what I heard, it's hard to advance because nobody wants to leave the service. To me this is a sign that the people are treated well. The Air Force is the only branch that I've heard of that has actually kicked people out because thay haven't met the advancement/time requirements (IIRC you must make E-6 to stay in for 20 years and retire).
 

WildThing121675

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I have a friend who is recently enlisted in the USN, and he is training in weather. He thinks he's going to be getting a stateside post, but you never know. I told him you never know where the military will post you. I had the priveledge of having a few beers with him Friday after work while he was in town.

Think about what you want to do in the service, discuss it with a recruiter. That's what I would do. I myself thought of going Navy, and try to get on a carrier. But my disabilities kept me from that. Tell people what you want to do.

WildThing121675
 

Skeeter

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If you're concerned about getting stationed overseas, one way of being assured a post stateside is to get accepted to (and pass) the Navy Nuke program. There are no nuclear vessels stationed anywhere outside the US. The nuclear program is also the way to be guaranteed a post on a carrier. Just don't volunteer for Submarines and the only nuclear vessels left are carriers ;) I was stationed on a carrier.

The thing about the Navy is, unless you're really lucky, you'll be doing 6 month deployments pretty frequently. If you're single the deployments aren't too bad (besides the fact that practicing your ABDLism is near impossible). If you're married, or in a relationship, deployments really suck!

For me the military was a great experience. I had doubts about how I wanted to get started in my life and what I wanted to do. The military helped me out a lot in this regard.

My Navy experience was one of extremes. It was at times the most boring and horrible job with the coolest working environment you can imagine. In one day I went from scrubbing urinals and toilets to standing Reactor Operator for an aircraft carrier. On another day I would spend 7 hours stripping, waxing, and buffing a floor, then I would go watch flight ops on the flight deck. I've spent weeks without seeing the sun, and I've spent a few days seeing Dubai in the UAE.

Overall, it was well worth the 9 years of my life. I wouldn't be where I am today without it.
 

Fire2box

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The thing about the Navy is, unless you're really lucky, you'll be doing 6 month deployments pretty frequently. If you're single the deployments aren't too bad (besides the fact that practicing your ABDLism is near impossible). If you're married, or in a relationship, deployments really suck!

For me the military was a great experience. I had doubts about how I wanted to get started in my life and what I wanted to do. The military helped me out a lot in this regard.
I can handle a break from the whole ab/dl thing and I am single anyways and for the foreseeable future it's going to stay like that. As for the reason you joined mine is pretty much the same.
 

Jeremiah

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Good luck with your decision!

Military jobs go where they are needed. Army infantry are not likely to stay stateside forever. Cooks are needed everywhere to include combat zones. Marines are riflemen first and may end up in hostile locations.

My recommendation for you would be the Air Force first, followed by the Navy. The Air Force basic training course is 6 weeks of lesser training than the other branches. If I wanted to transfer to the Navy or Army, I would have to complete addition training to bring me up to par with their boot camp graduates.

The Air Force has the nicest living conditions and the fewest front line positions. Ships do not allow for much privacy. Air Force dorms at permanent duty stations are usually only one person per room. Jobs that require longer training periods are more likely to remain away from combat. Security Forces, combat engineers, and transportation folks are currently in high demand in Iraq. Computer Programmers, Intel Analysts, and bomber repair technicians are less likely to enter combat. There are some tasks that are best done away from gun fire...

The first task is to speak with a recruiter to determine if you are eligible to enter the military. Next, you must take the ASVAB test to determine what jobs you qualify for. Take these test seriously. Low scores limit available jobs to less technical work such as Security Forces or Transportation.

I wish you the best of luck in finding your future.
 

CrazyCanuck

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Military is a great job, very very respectable and honorable! Can't really say for sure how it works in the US for different factions (Army, Navy, Air Force), seems a little more divided then up here in the great white north, but you can probably go back and forth from different factions until you find what's right for you. If you want away from the middle east, Army probably isn't your best bet...Navy generally has a presence everywhere and you would have to spend lots of time on ship (you don't get seasick, do you?)

I have a meeting with a recruiting officer set up for tomorrow, so I understand where your at right now. I wish you the best of luck!

Kevin
 

Skeeter

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I can handle a break from the whole ab/dl thing and I am single anyways and for the foreseeable future it's going to stay like that. As for the reason you joined mine is pretty much the same.
Things can change pretty fast once you join. You will suddenly find yourself in a career and living on your own making half decent money (with all of the benefits it's surprising how well you do).

t sounds like you are similar to where I was when I joined. I ended up getting married after 2 years being in.

The first task is to speak with a recruiter to determine if you are eligible to enter the military. Next, you must take the ASVAB test to determine what jobs you qualify for. Take these test seriously. Low scores limit available jobs to less technical work such as Security Forces or Transportation.
I agree with this, but be wary of the recruiter. Most of them are pretty honest, but there are some that will tell you anything you want to hear to get you to join. There were guys at boot camp who were seriously duped into some really crappy jobs. Make sure your recruiter gives you documents explaining any programs you are interested in, and then read them all the way through. There are almost no 100% guarantees as to what you'll end up doing, but knowing the programs well will help you navigate the pitfalls. Having a high ASVAB score will help the most in keeping you away from jobs involving combat.

If you want to ask me any questions, feel free to PM me.
 

MysteriousVisitor

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If you really intend to join the military, then get on it FAST. The army is at 103% strength right now, and will be up over 107% in a few months. Many MOSs and ratings are overstaffed. For the army, the only MOS available in quantity right now is 11x (cannonfodder).

Also, this overstaffing makes it much harder to get a medical or moral waiver, especially for the Air Force or the Navy. Make sure you're clean medically and morally before going to MEPS, because they will find any excuse to DQ you or delay your entry.


I also echo the poster above me. If that job your recruiter pushes you towards has a really high bonus, odds are its really shitty. The good thing about the internet is you can do lots of research against what your recruiter says. Make sure you know exactly what you're getting into. Also, if it isn't in the contract, it isn't happening, period. Get absolutely everything in writing. If you want a specific MOS/rating, get it in writing.

Whatever you do, don't go into the Marines. Because they're insane.
 

thad

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For the army, the only MOS available in quantity right now is 11x (cannonfodder).
11 Bullet Catcher is a noble profession, and frankly, when you find yourself getting shot at, I, for one, would prefer to have more training as a rifleman than anything else.

Whatever you do, don't go into the Marines. Because they're insane.
There are three ways in which a ruler can bring misfortune upon his army:--

...

(2) By attempting to govern an army in the
same way as he administers a kingdom, being ignorant
of the conditions which obtain in an army. This causes
restlessness in the soldier's minds.

...
Sun Tzu

I would posit that the Marines are the sane ones, preparing for war, and not trying to turn killing people into an office job, but acknowledge war as a hellacious situation which requires training and conditioning above and beyond that which most normal people will ever require in their day to day lives. The sooner we acknowledge this in the rest of our martial forces, the sooner they will be able to deal with the situation at hand without the huge amounts of trama we see in the troops returning today.


Then again, I'm probably biased ;) (disclaimer, I am not a Marine)


:twocents:


-- Thad.
 

MysteriousVisitor

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11 Bullet Catcher is a noble profession, and frankly, when you find yourself getting shot at, I, for one, would prefer to have more training as a rifleman than anything else.
Infantry is what the Army is built off of, but that does not mitigate the fact that they have the highest casualty rates of any MOS besides perhaps EOD.

I would posit that the Marines are the sane ones, preparing for war, and not trying to turn killing people into an office job, but acknowledge war as a hellacious situation which requires training and conditioning above and beyond that which most normal people will ever require in their day to day lives. The sooner we acknowledge this in the rest of our martial forces, the sooner they will be able to deal with the situation at hand without the huge amounts of trama we see in the troops returning today.

[/QUOTE]

I have to disagree with this statement. They were trained to think differently.
Marines are taught what to think. While the army molds soldiers, the Marines lobotomize them. They tear them down and build them back up.

As far as training for war instead of for peace, the Marines are in a unique position. Much of their administration and logistical functions are done by the Navy. This allows them to concentrate on killing then feeding, caring for, and paying the killers. However Army infantry does much the same thing now. They didn't a few years ago, but ever since infantry OSUT started at Ft. Benning a few years ago, its become much more intense, so I've heard.

Either way, grunts are grunts. Marine grunts and Army grunts do the same job, with much the same training and equipment. Just a little friendly interservice badgering.

Although Marine training is Insane.
 
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