Unhappy son at Culdrose

Discussion in 'The Fleet Air Arm' started by Worried mummy, Jan 15, 2014.

Welcome to the Navy Net aka Rum Ration

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial RN website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Hi all. This is my first post on this forum.

    My son joined up last July as a trainee Naval Airman (aircraft handler). He passed out of basic training at Raleigh in October, and has been at Culdrose since November.

    He's made some good friends, but since he's gone to Culdrose he hates it, and he's been worse since he's gone back after the Xmas break. He keeps sending me messages saying he wants to leave and come home. He says 3 have handed in their notice, and lots are unhappy. The first round of exams before Xmas, every single one of them apart from one failed. He says the general mood is very depressing, and that all of them think the course is rubbish as they've taken the firefighting out of the course, which is the element a lot of them wanted.

    Help! What do I do?

    I don't know what to say. I don't want him to be unhappy, but I don't want him to make a massive mistake he'll regret. I also have a feeling he doesn't have an option to leave any more anyway? I don't want him to do something stupid in the vain hope he'll get discharged.

    He told me if you fail 3 exams you get discharged. Is this true? If so, is that his way out, just keep failing exams?
  2. I feel for you . Its not good being a parent and having that put on you. What exactly does he hate? How old is he? Is he struggling with the training? Is he home sick?
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
  3. How old is he? Is it the first time he has been away from home? I cannot comment on the navy aspect but from experience being away from home is hard to start with; especially with added stress. Ive heard culdrose nightlife is pretty rubbish so not a good distraction. Also people tend to phone home more with negatives with positives, and venting is often a way to release some stress. Obviously you know him better than anybody but just keep being there for him and someone to talk to and for support, after the exams et al he might start to enjoy navy life a bit more.

    It probably seems the end of the world to him right now but hopefully he will see its worth it and remind him what the options are at home. I am sure you have a lovely home and he loves you all but job opportunities and all that aren't particularly thrilling on the whole, and getting discharged probably won't look too good on the olde employment history. Even though it seems crazyyyy now its also not good to burn bridges as might decide to join the forces again in the future.

    Is there anyone he can talk to there? Like liason or support or someone? Id bet a lot of money they are used to offering support in these situations.
  4. He's 20. I think he's not coping with being away from home, and Culdrose is a long way from home - 6 hrs! He says that a lot of them are unhappy and want to leave. They seem to be feeling that what they're getting our of it isn't worth the sacrifice of being away from home.
  5. As R3 says is there a Bish there? They are a good port of call when things are getting tough.

    He is still in training phase 2 im guessing . Tell him after he passes out of phase two things change . Was he home sick at Raleigh?
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Erm, what's a Bish when it's at home?
  7. exJenny

    exJenny War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    The training programme may have changed since he walked in the AFCO. Just because they are not fire fighting in the basic branch training it does not mean they have removed it from the role of AH. Have they spoken to anyone to get an update or have they just been told they aren't doing it and not questioned it?

    Just the thoughts of a blonde ex wren
  8. The chaplin on base . They are very good at listening and offering a friendly ear and a cup of tea and a biscuit. My kid was always seeing the bish for a chat and some good advice.
  9. The bishop, or anyone else who offers pastoral care- someone serving can probably provide more specific advice.
  10. As far as I can make out, they've been told that it's an extra now, and they have to do 2 yrs at sea first before they can do it.

    I don't know how much is fact, and how much it's just what others have told him. It sounds like they're all depressing each other!

    What is everyone's knowledge of what he's told me about the exams. Fail 3 and you're out? This is stressing them all as well. I think they're spending their evenings looking for jobs, ready for when they get discharged.

    If it is true, it seems a bit of a strange way to run an outfit to me!
  11. Good advice, not being a religious man however on the odd occasion I did need to speak to the bish (oppos funeral) always found them to be full of good advice and help.

    What are they teaching chockheads these days, I remember tractor driving being removed unless required a few years back!

    Posted from the Navy Net mobile app (Android / iOS)
  12. exJenny

    exJenny War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Also Culdrose does struggle to sell itself in the winter. Come the summer it is brilliant. Tell him to get down the Blue Anchor and get Spingoed!!

    Just the thoughts of a blonde ex wren
    • Like Like x 2
  13. Jesus women the lads pissed off enough! The last thing he wants is a spingo hangover.

    Tell him to get down the barn club in Penzance. Shame the lady street is closed down.

    Posted from the Navy Net mobile app (Android / iOS)
    • Like Like x 2
  14. I'm not sure I can get him through to summer!
  15. In all fairness all forms of basic training is naff, but once completed it does get a lot better.
  16. exJenny

    exJenny War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Tell him he's not in the navy proper yet. Knuckle down and get on with the training. Get a sea draft in then decide... He's young enough to move on if it doesn't work out but he may regret leaving so early.

    Just the thoughts of a blonde ex wren
  17. (granny)

    (granny) Book Reviewer

    When I was his age I hated the Navy for a while. It's quite a different environment that we live in. I tried to buy myself out, but never could save the £100 needed. I eventually began to understand what the Navy life was about and to start enjoying myself. I served 23 years, many bad experiences, but far more good ones. Memories that will live with me forever. With luck he'll settle down and begin to really enjoy himself.
  18. Best advise I got was the first year is a piece of shit, however get through it and all will be better.

    There is light at the end of the tunnel however at the moment it's a pussers right angle torch with dodgy batteries. There will be a mag light there soon. However it could be Sgt P's 10 cell one!

    Posted from the Navy Net mobile app (Android / iOS)
  19. Wow very tough. It sounds like they are more worried than actually wanting out. If theres pressure on them to pass the exams then all of a sudden there is uncertainty. What with home sickness the combination will bring them down.

    I thought if you failed an exam you would have to do it again not the three stirkes and your out malarky. I dont remeber my kid havig this pressure to pass or get out when doing WE.

    Good point JFH. I rember a phone call when herself was at Collingrad. " Its S*** here dad I cant wait to get out of this place , I just have to bare with it and suck it up and look fwd to actually passing into the fleet." Never a truer word, after Collingwood she was happier than a pig in poo when she got her first ship. She still is.
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
  20. When i was unhappy living away my parents said i could leave, but i couldnt move back home. At the time i thought it was a bit bluddy harsh but their plan worked- i stayed and loved it and am forever thankful they stood firm. Can't wait to move away again now and spread me wings.

    Hope he is feeling more positive soon and makes a decision he is happy with.

Share This Page