family dilemma

Discussion in 'Joining Up - Royal Navy Recruiting' started by Typh, Mar 28, 2010.

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  1. Hi all

    Ive signed up to become a CT and im due to join in sep/oct of this year. I have however been hit with the bombshell that my girlfriend has fallen pregnant (yes, its mine :wink:) and my heads in bits over what to do. My heart is really set on joining because its a good income with good security and its something i really want to do. It will obviously be a big heart wrencher not watching my kid grow up as my girlfriend has just started her career (in middlesbrough where i also live) so it would be unfair to ask her to move with me. Im basically looking for an insight into how people manage with not being there for the majority of the time and if you have had regrets or thought it was the smartest decision you made. Any information would be MASSIVELY appreciated.

  2. Well first of all let me congratulate you as the first person I've encountered who wants to line in Middlesbrough :p
    Secondly the length of waiting time for entry into the RN is getting longer so I suggest that you put your sprogs name down for a place.
    I think that you may find that your girlfriends career may just be put on hold once she is in possession of a sprog, sprogs seem to take over lives :oops:
    Don't worry you aren't the first to put his girl in the family way and serve in the RN, just might mean a lifestyle change.
  3. Most people adapt improvise and overcome situations like this. A lot of people manage and have managed it over the years. The only person who can make the decision is you though
  4. fortunately for my girlfriend she works in childcare so she can take the young un with her. Obviously if time takes longer to join then at least i can be there a bit and even when i join it will be a while before i go on my first tour. And weekends are free and although awkward i could probably work around it.

    @ tommo: i think logically its the best thing to do, id just hope in years to come the sprog would understand.

    any more insights again would be appreciated
  5. My dad was in the Mechant navy for 36 years. Mum brought up us 4 kids on her own most of the time. We never hated him for it. He provided us with a good roof over our heads.

    I'd still join if I was you. Yes you may miss out on things but to be able to provide a better future and do a job you want to do isn't such a bad thing.
  6. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Ultimately mate, it's your decision and i think you know what you want to do, it just sounds better when people say the things you want to hear. This is not a criticism by the way. I wish you all the best in your Naval career and all the best as a father.
  7. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator


    In most cases, if it's a first child, we would recommend you wait until the child is around 6 months old before physically joining the service.

    Several reasons - Your child and partner probably need you more than we do initially. The relationship dynamic greatly shifts with the arrival of a little bundle of joy & both you & your partner may no longer see the Armed Forces as a a viable means of employment whilst bringing up a young child, not least due to being able to cope & dealing with the compounded issues of separation.

    Once the dust has settled & the family routines are established, it's then better to re-appraise the situation.

    I have no doubt many would disagree with the above comments & cite themselves as an example of bringing a stable job & supporting income to the family - however those who have yet to join the service are advised to put their family first - at least initially as you unwittingly place yourself in the category of being a training risk.
  8. Thanks for the input. If i was to go to my career officer and explain my situation what would he recommend i do, woudl it be possible for me to stay on the waiting list until im ready or would i have to reapply again. Im very torn between the 2 choices because the career i am in doesnt have the best job security and the navy is something ive wanted to do for sometime now. However it would be hard not seeing the kid, im really just trying to see how others deal with it.

    @ blackrat i know what u r saying but im more looking for insights into how others manage with families, as u say only i can make the decision and im very confused at what to do so any advice is very helpful
  9. Hi Type,

    As Ninja put it, in the majority of cases it's better to spend the first 6 months of the child life at home and then re-assess. The Navy will still be recruiting into the CT world in 6 months time and in reality you can say to your recruiter that you are not available to join until that time. It may mean that you have to do certain aspects of the recruiting process again. But it would be better for you to join when you are 100 % ready to leave the new family group. Most guy who go in when a child is on the horizon will unfortunately have to re-prioritise and normally will not give 100 % to the training and either leave of their own choice or be asked to leave for not full acheiving their full potential.

    So I would say you would probably be better to leave it a few months and then go off to Raleigh and see how it goes. As you rightly said you will get plenty of chances to go home especially within the CT world.

    Best of luck and of course Congratulations


  10. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    If you don't actually have a joining date yet, my advice is stay on the list - once the provisional offer of service is received you can then make a choice whether to defer entry or otherwise.

    The only thing I'd suggest is to tell your AFCO that circumstances have changed and if you do decide to put back your entry let them know soonest so that someone else can take the place. If you wish to defer entry by a few months, the AFCO can make you "unavailable" to join before a certain date if you wish - the only thing you need repeat is any "time-expired" element of selection.

    Again best of luck.
  11. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    Just to add: "Doh, pipped at the post by SM" - but we're basically saying the same thing
  12. Again thanks for the advice. would it be a better idea to inform my careers officer sooner rather than later? Im awaiting contact to do the 4 day pre joining course and was going to tell him then but im not sure. to be honest i reckon i would still give my all in training etc but the more i look into getting home etc at weekends from plymouth to the boro is a pretty big trek obviously car and train takes 6+ hours and planes go once a day.(Just to check the seamanship course and sea training are at plymouth?). Obviously it depends on what time i get away on a friday and get back on a sunday but i have no idea what time i can leave/have to be back.
  13. tbh I think this is a decision only you and your girlfriend can make. How old are you / gf?

    Whilst ninja and SM can obviosuly give you the practical side of things you do need to consider the non-practical as well.

    For example if you delayed your entry would it be any easier for you (emotionally and practically) to leave your gf and 6 month old child rather than your gf and newborn - especially as 6th month olds tend to have a personality by then rather than being a sleeping-eating-nappy changing machine they seem to be when they're born?

    Also you need to answer this one honestly - would you resent your gf and baby if for some reason you couldn't get into the RN at a later date?

    What does your gf think ? Yes her head is all over the place at the mo, just finding out she's pregnant, but she must have some thoughts on the situation

    I really wish you well in what ever you decide

  14. Thanks for the inputs im taking them all on board and its been very helpful. Liek most people have said its vritually my choice but i dont know whether to inform the AFCO now or wait a while until ive made my choice
  15. I would tell him of your dilemma, the factors that you are weighing up, and also suggest giving a him a likely target date that you must now set yourself for making your decision. Until you are 'in' he is the nearest thing to being your RN Divisional Officer/Father Confessor.

    I'm sure that he will have a sympathetic ear (if nowt else) and he may well offer a slant/more advice as grist to you and your OH's decision mill.

    The best of luck with whichever way you play your hand; Children are a blessing but they rarely arrive at the most convenient time in a chaps RN Career!

    PS Bear in mind that genuine folk never GIVE advice; they will only OFFER it.

  16. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    As you Navy types would say, BZ that man. Wise words Bob.
  17. I fear there is only one real option for you:

    In all seriousness though congrats, you'll be fine. As a CT you will be spending loads of time training shoreside anyway, so you should be able to spend a fair bit of time with your kid when it pops out. Added to this the benefits of getting schooling allowance and a married patch from the mob, you are laughing.
  18. :lol: Awesome picture. I personally was contemplating suggesting a litre of gin and a coathanger but thought I'd better not. I'll never forget when I said to one of my exes that that is what I would do if she ever got pregnant. I was obviously joking but she didn't find it funny. Women, funny creatures eh :p
  19. haha aint seen that demotivational poster for a looooooooong time. The more ive been thinking about it the more i think it would be better to join. The short term could be tough but ill have opportunities to get home reasonably regularly and i sure the yougn un would understand as it gets older. Thnaks for the the inputs guys and gals
  20. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    You should still advise your AFCO regarding the change in personal circumstances, whether you intend joining or otherwise & remember the decision is best made with your partner rather than unilaterally.

    Best of luck

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