Can I Make It Through USMC Boot Camp? - Blogs - Marine Corps - USMC Community
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Can I Make It Through USMC Boot Camp?

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There comes a time in life when you will ask yourself if you have what it takes to be a U.S. Marine. This question is a rather easy one to answer, but a very complex one to explain. From the outside the Marine Corps is spoken of as if it were near impossible to gain entry into it. Today because of the many movies, video games, and internet sources many people both civilian and military have many misconceptions about what the Marine Corps is like and what it takes to make it as a Marine. Many Marines themselves also exaggerate their experiences further confusing and misleading the possible Marine Corps prospect. The decision to enlist into the Marines is a very difficult one to make and by adding all the false bravado and lies or misinformation about the Marine Corps the decision can become near impossible to make. Make absolutely no mistake about it, USMC boot camp and the Marine Corps life style is indeed a very tough one and one that is not for everyone. So before making this crucial decision just be well aware that you must adapt to their standards and not the other way around. You are not needed to question its many traditions that have been in place for many decades now and the rules you must follow are never open to debate. If you are bothered by authority, orders, discipline, chaos, control, repetitive tasks, teamwork, chain of command, micro-management, boredom, race, physical activity, control, restrictions, rules, and many other similar things then you may not enjoy your enlistment in the 'Big Green Machine', because from time to time it will give you the 'Big Green Weenie' and there isn't a damn thing you can do about it. Often the word U.S.M.C. is translated to mean "U Signed the Mother****in Contract", meaning once in the Corps you are there until your contract is over and you will fulfill your contract one way or the other.

Many civilians and non USMC military members believe that in order to become a Marine you need to be in top notch physical shape. Many also believe you must be ready to kill and that you must be some kind of hard-ass teenager to join. There are those who even think that in order to gain entry into the worlds finest fighting force one must be a very athletic person who is bulging with muscles and has absolutely no body fat on his or her person. Many also assume that most Marines come from the dredges of our society and that most Marines are people who could not make it in society. Many times the people who we consider "geeks" do not even glance towards the USMC as they fear the simple thought of becoming a Marine because of the many outlandish stereotypes out there. All to often we are made to believe that in order to be a Marine you must be some sort of emotionless, cold hearted person who can easily transform into a killing robot and carry out orders without questioning them. Bottom line is Marines are people just like you and I. Some are stronger then others while a great many are in great need of the strengthening of their mind and or body. Some are smarter then others while the vast majority are just your average Joe from small town USA. What they each have in common is the desire and dream to become a Marine which is why they get separated from their peers once their decision has been made. This decision alone is what separates Marines from anyone else in the world. Only Marines have mustered up the courage to try to become Marines and this fact alone speaks volumes about these character types.

The reality is that anyone can make it through boot camp if they truly want to. It is very difficult to fail in boot camp. The drill instructors do everything in their power to pass you. They will not cut you slack, but you do get more then one opportunity to pass if you fail a certain portion of boot camp. Anyone can make it through recruit training if they believe in themselves and trust their drill instructors. For starters you do not run every day. Running is one of the most exaggerated and overhyped events in Marine Corps boot camp. Many fear running in boot camp as if the Marine Corps was training you to run in marathons. You do not run great distances and you never run on back to back days. Your runs are in formation and never sped up to torture you. The purpose of boot camp is to whip you into shape to become a basic Marine and this is accomplished by giving you basic training in many events such as running, and marksmanship. If for example you fail the rifle range you will be given an opportunity or two to qualify. If you repeatedly fail then you get sent to the platoon that is behind you until you pass. In the rare event that you simply can not qualify, then a Marine you will never be. The only ways you will fail in boot camp is if you fail to adapt (suicide, refuse to train, are just hopeless, etc), fail your uranalysis test (fraudulent enlistment), get injured beyond repair, or you repeatedly fail at any one of the events required to graduate. Many people who graduate boot camp for all intended purposes do not live up to what a stereotypical Marine is perceived as. The Marine Corps will make you a Marine if that is what you want no matter who you are or think you are. The hardest part about becoming a Marine is making the decision to enlist and actually signing the contract. Once you have made that commitment the Marine Corps looks at it as if you have what it takes since you took the first step. So they will do everything in their power to graduate you and you and only you will be in charge of your destiny.

When one considers enlisting into the Marines right away his mind is bombarded with the many thoughts about the USMC that he has gathered over the years from various sources. Many times our minds can and do play tricks on us. It is very easy to convince ourselves that we can not make it in the Marine Corps or will fail in boot camp. But yet somehow thousands become Marines each and every year and it has been this way for many years now. Becoming a Marine is a great challenge both mentally and physically. The mental part actually starts well before you ever enlist. This is why the decision is a tough one to follow through with. Your body and mind will be pushed like you can not even begin to imagine. And you will discover things about yourself that you never knew you possessed or were capable of. When you are there training you do not nit pick and question everything like you do now. You do not run through scenarios in your head and ask "what if?" while there because your mind is occupied and does not have time for irrational thoughts. You simply react to orders because if you do not react then you will have to deal with the drill instructors and you will be taught how to react when ordered to do something. There is no doubt that Marine Corps boot camp is the hardest of all the branches and no matter if you attend Parris Island or San Diego you will go through the toughest challenge of your young life. But anyone can make it. All you need is heart and with that comes desire. Everything else you bring with you such as athletic superiority, and discipline, is just a bonus that will vault you above your peers in your new world.

The challenge awaits you, the next Marine. As of now the only person who can answer the question of whether you can make it through boot camp and in the Marines is the nasty civilian who reflects from your mirror. If you take up the challenge and enlist, I can guarantee you that the only way you will not earn your Eagle, Globe, and Anchor is if you quit on yourself or you do something stupid and get kicked out. Remember, it is very easy to convince ourselves that we are not cut out for the Marine Corps. COME GET SOME!


  1. HiDezMarine's Avatar
  2. HiDezMarine's Avatar
  3. manmade0786's Avatar
    Well said devildog!!!!