close

Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

Need Advice : Son wants to enlist

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by Rotn1, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. Rotn1

    Rotn1

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    4,022
    Likes Received:
    5,082
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    22 Year son just graduating from college. Has earned a good / tough degree with cumulative grades in the 3.25 range. Was a teaching assistant for last two years for which he receive a glowing letter of recomendation from the department head / professor. He has an attractive girlfriend who also finishes her degree in the spring. All appears good. No loans / no student debt.

    Out of the blue he says he wants to join the army, and try to qualify for the army ranger school!

    Never before did he show any interest in the millitary. He never considered of ROTC, and also shows no interest in OCS because of the apparent wait. Says he doesnt want the responsibility of leading either.

    He simply says he wants to make a difference. He says money is not important to him. (easy for him to say at this point since he has always had everything within reach).

    His mother and I are besides ourselves. We both have the highest respect for those in the service(s). We believe he is feeling overwhelmed by the pressure of finally having to start a life on his own and having to get a job.

    He is very athletic so the physical demads should not be a problem. He is not mature thinking and tends to be obsessive / compulsive.

    I do not want him to enlist. I want him to at least try to get a job outside of the milliatry and take more time with such an important life decision.

    Ultimately, it is his life and his decision and I must support whatever he chooses.

    I know there are many millitary and former millitary members on GT. I would appreciate your advice.

    I sincerely hope nothing I have said is construed to be disrespectful to the armed forces. in any way. This situation is just a shocker for us.

    Thank you for your thoughts.
     
  2. Averageman

    Averageman

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    Messages:
    2,012
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well Dad at this point you can only wait and see.
    Not having served as an Army Ranger, but being a Army "selected" Recruiter someone will try and B.S. this young man in to a chump enlistment to make this months quota. Don't let that happen.
    Get a currently serving Ranger in a Ranger Battalion ( a tab wont be as much help) to show your Son how it is done. Dont settle for less or he might end up a Mortar Crewman for the next 4 years and be very dissatisifed with his decision.
    You must have raised him right, he is looking at a calling and not a job.
     

  3. Kingarthurhk

    Kingarthurhk Isaiah 53:4-9

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    12,283
    Likes Received:
    2,771
    Location:
    Texas
    Encourage him to get a Master's degree. At least then he can be a comissioned officer, and may end up with a nice retirement in 20 years. The grades don't seem like a JD is in his future, those guys make their own ticket.
     
  4. sourdough44

    sourdough44

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Messages:
    3,557
    Likes Received:
    716
    Location:
    WI
    I joined at 17, don't have any regret. He will surely mature during the process. Lots of other ideas would worry me more, as a parent. He'll have options down the road with his degree.
     
  5. raven11

    raven11

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2009
    Messages:
    8,768
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Illinois
    i'm assuming he at least has a Bachelors degree, tell him to go the officer route

    my father was pretty anti military, i would build toy forts and lego guns when i was a kid and my dad would always take them. but I joined regardless of his opinion, never lost sleep over it.

    the choice is his either way, so do you want to be there at his graduation from basic or not.
     
  6. lunarspeak

    lunarspeak

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2005
    Messages:
    1,348
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    north carolina
    he's 22...cut the cord and take the nipple out of his mouth...
     
  7. M&P15T

    M&P15T Beard One

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Messages:
    23,596
    Likes Received:
    5,919
    Location:
    Arlington, VA.
    What do you think he means by "make a difference"?

    Do you think he wants to see combat?

    If so, it's probably too late for that, since we're looking at being out of Afghanistan at the end of next year.
     
  8. pipedreams

    pipedreams Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Messages:
    10,579
    Likes Received:
    2,159
    Location:
    S. E. Iowa
    Maybe a stint in the military would do him good if that is what he wants. He should go and talk with the recruiters and see what is offered. He would do well in the military with his education and TA experience. While he should not go into it blind trying to stop him may may cause real issues in the family. With all the cut backs coming in the defense dept. he may find they have no interest in him.
     
  9. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 1999
    Messages:
    7,254
    Likes Received:
    1,524
    Location:
    Blue Planet
    There are worst things than joining the military. Could smoke dope and run off and join a commune and be a stinking hippie. :supergrin:

    If he is immature then joining the military might mature him and teach him some leadership skills. He can always go to OCS at some point when he is in.

    With the wars winding down it might not be a bad choice right now. Get a some good training, do his duty and grow up a little.

    My son is 27 now. Three of his childhood friends joined the military at some point after high school and college. One went Air Force and basically fixed toilets on a base for 4 years. (got a good job as a plumber afterwards though). One went Marines and despite trying to go oversees, he guarded nuclear subs in Seattle for his enlistment. He is now working security at a hospital. The other joined the Army and is still in. He went rangers/special forces and has been in the Philippines (his mother was Filipino) teaching their army and fighting rebels. He is having a great time.

    I say let him go. It is a process of cutting the strings and growing up.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2012
  10. Kingarthurhk

    Kingarthurhk Isaiah 53:4-9

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    12,283
    Likes Received:
    2,771
    Location:
    Texas
    I agree with the cutting the cord, but I am about twice his age and married. I am definately against the second part.:rofl:
     
  11. dvrdwn72

    dvrdwn72

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2010
    Messages:
    1,205
    Likes Received:
    2
    Well, all I can say is its not for everyone. Its 90% mental,10% physical. They used to give ranger contracts during enlistment. Problem is if he "washes out" he will be most likely placed where they need him which could really suck. If he really wants a challenge, look into afsoc, pararescue,combat controller, etc.
     
  12. Rotn1

    Rotn1

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    4,022
    Likes Received:
    5,082
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I have tried for the last year to convince him to stay in school and get his Masters but no luck so far. Never considered in the context of the services.
     
  13. KommieforniaGlocker

    KommieforniaGlocker

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    3,836
    Likes Received:
    124
  14. Averageman

    Averageman

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    Messages:
    2,012
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't see Army Rangers being a yawn of a job at this point despite talks of leaving Afghanastan.
    I'm sure he can make a difference and see some action in a 4 year tour as a Ranger.
    I joined at 18, took a combat arms job and lived most of my first 10 years in Germany patroling the border. I know I made a difference, part of the pressure we applied won the Cold War.
    Being a Soldier is a lot like being a Cop or a Nurse or a Firefighter. The pay sucks, but you do it because it is what you are.
     
  15. Rotn1

    Rotn1

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    4,022
    Likes Received:
    5,082
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I am really not sure. I want to give him a few days at home before we heavilly engage in the discussion.

    My initial thought it is something the local recruiter told him. One of those indefendable (and usually true) tag lines, that mask what he is really thinking.

    I already know from my checking of the process and what he has said was the recruiter lied to him multiple times. If he does proceed I will have his preliminaty file transfered to Philadelphia.
     
  16. Kingarthurhk

    Kingarthurhk Isaiah 53:4-9

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    12,283
    Likes Received:
    2,771
    Location:
    Texas
    At least in the Airforce to be a comissioned officer they require a Masters Degree. That way can probably make full bird Colonel before he retires.
     
  17. M&P15T

    M&P15T Beard One

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Messages:
    23,596
    Likes Received:
    5,919
    Location:
    Arlington, VA.
    If the OP's son's meaning of "making a difference" means getting into actual combat, specifically, then it's too late.

    So, YOUR experiences mean bupkiss. What the OP's son's expectations are mean everything. If the OP's son thinks he's gonna get into combat before things wind down, it probably not gonna happen.
     
  18. Rotn1

    Rotn1

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    4,022
    Likes Received:
    5,082
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
     
  19. jph02

    jph02

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2012
    Messages:
    1,531
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    If he says he doesn't want the responsibility of leading, then the military is not for him. Military is all about leadership at every level. That said, does he have leadership qualities? If so, he might just be huffing and puffing and the military might be perfect for him.

    Perhaps he might consider the National Guard or reserves. They undergo the same training and meet the same standards, but Guard/reserves have civilian careers and lives, too. If he really likes it, he can still go active. But if he decides the military is not for him, fulfilling that contract in the Guard/reserves is not as in your face as having to finish out 4-6 years doing it 24/7.

    I would encourage him to look at all the services. Ranger school is rather selective and the recruiter cannot guarantee that for him. He should see what kind of career fields each branch has to offer. Then he can decide based on that more than the cool factor of Ranger school. Meaning no disrespect to the Rangers, it's not for everyone.

    For the record, you can get a commission with an associates degree, but need a bachelors to make O3 (Captain in the Army). There's no requirement for a masters, but having one could help for selection boards to higher ranks later on.
     
  20. Airborne Renegade

    Airborne Renegade

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2012
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Fort Bragg, NC
    I am a current active duty paratrooper with the 82nd airborne division. I would support his decision. The Army is great for single soldiers. If he is wanting to do the whole Ranger thing I would suggest that he whip himself into shape and make sure he signs on as an 11b with a ranger contract upon entering the Army. It will ensure he gets a slot in the Ranger regiment and he will go straight from basic training to advanced individual traing to airborne school to Ranger training. It's the best way to do it as he will be used to all the physical demands. I know you said your son is in decent physical shape but trust me, no matter how physically fit he thinks he is, there is always room for improvement. Is a matter of fact, I will leave you my email address and please have your son get in touch with me and I will let him know all the things the recruiter won't tell him and give him advice on how it will work for him. The Rangers is an awesome place for quick promotions if he can hang with it. The only concerning thing you said was that he doesn't want the responsibility of becoming a leader. If he doesn't want to be a leader then the Rangers is not for him as at some point he WILL be put in charge. That actually goes for the entire Army. Please have him get in touch with me and I will give him first hand information.