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Thread: New to this
11-08-08, 01:46 PM #1
New to this
Hi, I'm very new to this and i'm not good at writing but I want/need to join in. My son is 17 and told me Thursday that he is going the Marines and that on Monday I am to meet with the recruiter to sign papers. I guess my question is..is it normal to me feel like I can't believe this is happening and so fast? Is it what he really wants and for the right reasons? And at 17 is he able to fully think this through and know? It is going to be Monday soon and I will sign the papers for him..I have told him I will support him 100% if this is what he wants..he says it is. I asked him why so quick... before he said he would wait a while after high school..but now he's not..he said if he puts it off he might not do it..and if he goes in now it's a year sooner he would be out..he said he wants to be sucessful and become a cop afterwards..I guess he knows what he wants and I should take him at his word but he is so young. Also on Tuesday he does his physical and then spends the night at a hotel and then Wednesday does some test and then back home and on Saturdays will do the training things with the recruiter? So most will be back to normal till he goes to PI which I think will be in July. I cry so much! and already miss him and he's not even gone anywhere yet..I know it will be very hard on him too..I grew up in NC and always heard the PI is a tough place. He said he will talk to me more later..he has hardly told me anything..he kind of just sprung this on me and it seems really fast to me although he says he has thought it through...I wonder. Is this normal? Any advice?
I've done quite a bit of reading in here and you seem like a great bunch..thanks so much!!
Sorry this is so long..I'm just not sure how to handle all of this..I think I might explode..I guess I have a lot of questions running through my mind.
11-08-08, 02:22 PM #2
I couldn't find out to edit..so hope this is ok to do. I did want to say that I am extremly proud of my son and love him dearly and have told him so. I have always and will support the military and want to be the best marine mom. I just hurt inside.
11-08-08, 04:26 PM #3
Not sure of what the time line is. You say he'll be leaving in July? Sounds like the DEP, Delayed Enlistment Program, which is what my son did. So, he does finish high school. Sounds to me like he wants to get with the program and get himself prepared for boot camp.
My son did that as well. In fact, he went to the gym with his recruiter to work out. He dedicated himself to getting in the best physical shape that he possibly could.
I hear the sadness and a little shock because it seems to be falling on you out of the blue. I'd say that's about normal. What I did was to help my son understand that he should not do this unless he fully understood what Marine boot camp is all about - that it would be the hardest thing he had ever done. We talked a lot for a lot longer time that you have had. He made his decision and I supported him 100% when he made it. He told me, Dad, I want to be the best."
You have every right to question the recruiter about the timing. I urge you to do so. But, remember when he turns 18, he does not need you to sign.
I know it's tough. Hang in there. I hope other who know more and have experienced more than I will chime in.
11-08-08, 05:19 PM #4
Thanks so much for responding. There is a lot of sadness. I guess because I don't understand because it did seem to fall out of the blue. I do support him and he says he has been thinking about it for a while. He has mentioned it before now but not in a way like he was real serious. But now I guess he was..he's like mom you know I've talked about it before..I guess what he thinks was talking is my thinking he mentioned that he was thinking. A month ago he was avoiding the recuriter like mad..everytime the phone rang..he was like don't answer it, tell him I'm not here, tell him I will call him if I change my mind, I heard him tell the recruiter that. But he still called for a while..and he talked to him alot at school. Then my son went to a Saturday workout a week ago and then Monday did the practice asvab test, then Thursday he said he would be late from school that he was talking to the marines and when he came home it was..mom Monday you suppose to go to the recruiters office to sign papers..I felt like I was hit with a ton of bricks. He says he is sure..he says he wants to be sucessful. I don't have anyone to talk to at all. I don't want him to get tired of me asking him if he is sure..the last thing I want is him annoyed with me.
11-08-08, 05:57 PM #5
I joined up at 17. My mom was a little upset.. wanted me to stick around for the summer. I left 3 days after graduation. Now.. almost 12 years later.. I'm still happy with my decision.
Sometimes when you know.. you know. And a boy has to be a man someday. Make his shingle and set it out, see if he succeeds or fails. The nice thing is, the Marine Corps is hard to fail at. The only thing you have to do.. is want it...
Your son will be fine. He's with good people. And while I readily admit bias when I say that, I think 233 years of Marines can provide ample testimony of the character of the organization.
Welcome aboard the Marine family!
11-08-08, 06:01 PM #6
I may be mistaken and beg for correction if I am. But, I do not think that enrolling in DEP is the same as taking the oath to enter the USMC. I asked for a private discussion with our recruiter. My son waited outside and I was not bashful about asking all the questions I had.
If it is indeed DEP, I wonder if there is a real time pressure to get your signature. The recruiter, of course, wants to get it done. Not for any nefarious reason. He's doing his job.
Again, I hope some Marines will soon join in with some input / insight. Just know, you will not have to do this alone.
11-08-08, 06:24 PM #7
Thanks Isrowei..I know he has to become a man..and that is fine..I guess I'm hurt, scared and confussed. I haven't really had anytime to talk with him..just a little here and there..it is such a big choice to make and although I know it can be a good choice..it just seems so quick and I hope he has fully thought it thru. It came so quick I thought he was being pushed but I suppose you can't be pushed if you don't won't to be pushed..but then theres peer pressure. Maybe I'm just thinking crazy..maybe it's a mom thing.
Congrats on 12 years !! And thanks bunches for you service. I have the utmost respect for you guys and when I see a veteran in public I thank them too..a few have looked at me like I have lost my mind..lol
11-08-08, 06:36 PM #8
Hey dono, It is DEP that he is doing..I don't know what kind of pressure the recruiter was putting on my son at school..but I do know that he was pestering the crap out of him at home. And I figure which I may be wrong here but, do the recuiters always tell the truth and the whole truth? You all probably think I have lost my mind and a big ole' worry wort..lol but, i'm not always like this...I do see a good side to this but something just keeps nagging at me..
Thanks for being here..you'll probably kick me out. No really if there is no backing out I will be a great marine mom..all his buddys here love me.
11-08-08, 06:43 PM #9
The DEP means he is enlisting in the Marine Corps, but is not leaving right away. You could be in the Delayed Entry Program for up to a year, but the time could be as short as a few days if that is how things work out.
As for recruiters, if they lie they end up with many problems that can quickly end a career. They are going to paint everything in the best possible light. They are there to sell the Marine Corps, and they are among the best salesmen in the world. Like all Marines, they will walk through the very gates of hell to accomplish their mission, and getting people to enlist is their mission. But if you ask questions you will get truthful answers. It is up to your son to decide if the answers are sufficient.
I don't mean to sound rude, but in honesty the decision isn't yours to make. Since he is 17 you can delay the process, but on his 18th birthday he can enlist without your consent. Thus, I think it best to work with him to find a situation that makes both of you feel comfortable rather than trying to question the decision to enlist itself. If he is anything like me, once he made his mind up, there is no going back.
11-08-08, 07:05 PM #10
11-08-08, 07:44 PM #11
My Question,,,, Does this empty you nest? Reguardless, it can feel strange and hurt a little,[or alot]. I emptied my parents nest, but my dad signed for me at 17, 5 months after beginning boot, I turned 18. It can/will hurt,,,but the pride will take over. trust us on that.
11-08-08, 07:55 PM #12
Hi ya' Sparkie, No it doesn't empty the nest..but he is my baby and only boy. I have 2 girls also one at home and one lives down the street. I guess I just doubt that he can think for himself (I know he can..he's a smart boy)...which is my fault for always doing for him. Maybe he is more mature than I give him credit for. Guess it's time he learns to do for himself and I better teach him to iron and do laundry before boot camp. It hurts ALOT ok I'm a big wimpy..not usually. I'd kill or die for my kids and just want whats best..I know I should not doubt his decision..he's just never made a big one before..other than the car he wanted..lol..which I can't believe he is willing to leave even for boot camp. I want to thank you all..and for being here it means the world..you are the best.
11-08-08, 08:09 PM #13
So,,,, This means the girls will have a real big brother. And you will have a protector of a Nation. [ Try to see the good light ]. I do feel for your situation, having all 3 kids outta the nest now. I'll shut up, I know your pain is your own.
11-08-08, 08:24 PM #14
yeah they will have a real big brother...I do still have 1 girl at home tho. Don't know for how long. I do see the bright side..I know he will learn so much and I am so proud of him and know I will be even more proud later..and sparkie don't ever shut up..well maybe not ever depends on what you are saying...anyhoo..I just have to drop my doubt which is hard and other times it's easier..damn I'm a mess..lol I know he will be a great protector of this nation. I have faith in him!!
11-08-08, 08:28 PM #15
Many of us have,,,, and will, pray for you. Carry yourself tall. SF.
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