Families and the RN


I'm looking for some info/guidance really. I am currently looking into joining the RN. I am 28 with a you family and just wondered how others got on in the same situation?

Also wondering what benefits the family will get when I am at sea, by benefits I mean housing etc? I am waiting for a call from a CA to talk it through but nothing like hearing it straight from the horses mouth.

cheers in advance.
Then you'll be able to apply Married Quarters. Not sure exactly when i.e after training and you are in the fleet but you will be able to apply.

Your wife can have her own railcard, not sure about Portsmouth but Devonport you can get her a family ID card to get her and kids on the base.

FAFDU do family outings and events whilst you are away. Worth looking into

Lots of things

But it will be tough on them

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Yeah I have read that its very tough, also for you if you leave behind the family etc. Its good to know there is support there. Ill ask the CA when I speak to them this week at what stage. do you get much contact while at sea (by that I mean email, skype etc? may sound like a dumb question).

I suppose I am looking on it as while they are young I can do this so they get a better future, but at the same time would be hard missing them being young.

Is there a set time back at base after your deployment or is it literally if they need you they take you and could be a week after being back from 6 months at sea?

thanks again for the info.
How much time alongside after deployments is down to the needs of the service.

You'll get emails and phonecalls (paradigm service) depending on the current security state. Mobile phone calls should you be in range depending on where you are.

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Yeah I have read that its very tough, also for you if you leave behind the family etc. .
worth bearing in mind it often works out *much* tougher for them than it does for you. They're just getting on with normal life while you're travelling the world working, and playing, very hard - not much time to miss home and (mostly) a good laugh. Does she really know and understand what you're getting yourself into? Do you?
These are good questions Kinross and I suppose ones which I would have to answer no to, but that's why I thought I would come on here and start asking questions on boards to see if I can grasp some reality check and find out more about life in the RN as im sure the CA will just tell me its great and I should do it. Any advise on your question would be helpful, what would I be getting myself into? what would she be getting herself into? both questions we have been looking for answers to.
Bear in mind this is just my opinion, other views may vary, etc, etc, but it's a very strong relationship that survives first contact with the armed forces - it's much easier to start one with someone once you're already in.

It can be done, but joining up married is a minority pursuit and one I've seen either end in divorce, the joinee leaving the service, or, in rare instances, being ok. I would hazard a guess (having done initial training at Dartmouth, and been on the staff of initial training at Raleigh) that the overwhelming majority of non-marriage relationships, long term or not, do not survive the first year. Obviously, as stated in the first sentence, I can't comment on your own circumstances.

You're also going to be on a bit of a limb in basic training - people live in each others' pockets and become (or should) a very tight knit team; with the emphasis of sticking together on and off watch. The bloke who's never there because he's always on the phone home is an isolating position for you to put yourself in. It's not impossible to do it, and I know people that have, but like I say they're in the minority. My own personal feelings on the matter are that the first couple of years, officer or rating, are a single (wo)man's game to be quite honest.

Assuming you don't already live in Torpoint (and are intending to join as a rating - you don't say), you're going to relocate your life for initial training to Cornwall, presumably a long way from home. There, you're going to make a load of new friends and learn a whole new language which means that when you come home you're not going to have an awful lot in common with your current friends or old life anymore. This places strains on friendships, let alone marriages. Essentially, it's going to make you a different person, and give you a set of life experiences that are completely different to maybe what you both signed up to when you got together - and certainly ones that she's only going to be able to share insofar as you tell her about them.

You can live up the line, but how do you both feel about relocating to Portsmouth or Plymouth, for example? It could mean you see more of each other. So much is dependent on what branch you're joining - if Fleet Air Arm, for instance, then scrub Portsmouth and Plymouth, you could be about to spend the next few years of your working life (or even your whole career) in Helston or Yeovilton. That's before you add in sea time.

I'm not trying to paint the worst picture possible here, just trying to inject some realism. Like I say, it could work for you, but you really need to think things through properly to a) decide if this is something you want to do and b) give yourself the best possible chance of it all working out.

A cliche to finish with (and it's a cliche because it's true):

serving in the forces is not a job, it *is* a whole way of life. And it couldn't, for both better and worse, be any more different to civvy street.

Good luck.
Thank you for that it is very insightful. We are near Bath so moving to Portsmouth or Plymouth (where my wife studied at Uni) wont be a big change as she would be close to family and friends. She has been very supportive of the decision but worries about finance and housing mainly. She understands she will take role of mother and father for the majority of the time, but Im not sure if she realises quiet how much. I am thinking ME posting wise.

I would like to think (as I'm sure many do) that our relationship is strong enough, as you (and also my wife) said people have done this before and to think of the benefits for my family in the long term is something I think that is really making me interested as well as my own career progression.

thank you.
I rejoined after I had married, whilst wife was pregnant. 5 years back in and still going well for me and wife. It works for some not for others. We made some sacrifices but I know I have provided my boy with a good life so far.

I have spent a lot of time away over the last 5 years but we have made it work. My wife works full time so has kept her self busy even when I am away.

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what Tommo said - comms you're going to be at sea, ME rating you're going to be at sea, AE rating will give you most shore time. ME officer would have given you maybe 2 sea jobs in your career and all the rest shore-side, ME rating is sort of the other way around until you get senior (and even then shore jobs aren't a given).

Can't live your life for you but AET sounds sensible.*

*I was a warfare officer so it was all at sea!
Air Engineering Tech right, is there a normal base they get posted to in UK? I am def up for AET looks like my kind of area as I have done the Aeronautical Engineering (albeit 9 years ago). thanks guys its been brilliant to get information from people who have been there and done it!
Culdrose (Helston, Cornwall) Or Yeovilton (Somerset) are the RN bases. Sometimes you may work tri service

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Tri-service means you could end up on an air or army base. Three services, so mixing army, air force and navy = tri-service.

Serious question, and every fibre of my being is trying to stop me from typing this, but what is it about the navy that appeals to you?

Have you considered (deep breath) the RAF?

Shorter deployments, all shore stations (unless you get jobbed for the new carriers and joint strike fighter), quarters close to all the postings, most people go home in the evening...

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