If a teen asked you about joining the military what would you recommend?

If a teen, possibly family, asked you about joining the (US) military what would you recommend?  Maybe you have had this happen recently?

Can you put your recommendation on a scale of 1 to 10?


1 being lets run to another country, smoke pot, and burn flags.  10 being citizenship should only be granted through service. 

How much of your advice would be based on what you have done vs what you have heard?  Do you have someone else that you would take them to talk to?   What would you suggest that they do to prepare for joining the military?  What would you suggest that they do in the military?  

We have had a few young men ask specific versions of this here but this is my "big umbrella" version of the military question.  

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Assuming USA Military

I recommend, if they want to join the military, to wait until after college and go in as an Officer.  If they love it, they have a career with no limit to the top, if they hate it they do their time and get out with good benefits should they live.  I would also tell them that when they do become baby officers to listen to their subordinate officers who have done for far more years.  Don’t screw with them, respect them, they will know far more then you at first.

I have said this before on the group and irritated enlisted.  No, I could not join the military so I have never truly faced the question.

I would not want to suggest what they should do in the military, I have no clue and I am not them.

I would also suggest they take the summer between high school and college to go on Walkabout in Europe to live a little and have some adventure and grow up some before hitting college.  A lot of freshmen do stupid things because they are experiencing freedom for the first time.    

Just out of curiosity....not irritated or upset.....but why would you recommend going in as an officer? What career field would you suggest entering as an officer?

I would add that if someone does go in as an officer, don't only listen to other officers if you are new....most NCOs have A LOT more experience than an officer that has been in the military below the rank of Major.

Officer because my father was one and as I a said before they have a career path that might include advising the president, etc.  As to what field, that really is a personal choice, I have one friend who is a veterinarian.  My father was an Civil Engineer.  It should be whatever they enjoy, understand and what fascinates them.

 

I fully agree about paying attention to the NCOs hell for that matter the older secretaries in any office.  Those people know how thinks actually work along with who and how / why to get things done. 

Understand that there are many positions in the military, both officer and enlisted, that work within the White House and other positions of importance. In many fields (almost all) officers start out leading, but as their career progresses they become administrators. I would say that if someone did not want to work as an administrator and wanted to work in leadership roles/hands on type of work, then being an officer may not be the best career path. If they enjoy administrative work then officer is definitely the way to go and the pay/retirement is much better.

I would advise joining the military, based on what I know of the individual; not everyone is cut out for the military.


I am currently in the USAF, and I personally love it and wouldn't change a thing.

I'd tell the person to just go talk to a recruiter, or if they know anyone in the military, talk to them. To prepare for the military, learn patience. LOTS OF PATIENCE. Also, before going to boot camp, start exercising. You're gonna get a work out anyway, but it's much more bearable if you're already prepared.

As for what to do in the military, that's something you can't really give advice, other than to do your research, and find a job you'd think you'd like, even though what you want and what you get are sometimes two totally different things.

I love the military, and most everyone I talk too does too. But like I said, (and like I say to the ones who don't like it) not everyone is cut out for the military, and the military isn't for everyone.

Cannot agree more with this.

Not a military man my self but I work with many service men.

It's not for everyone, but for those that find a home there, I cannot imagine them anywhere else.

 

Depends on the Teen.

I would have to agree here.

This. And not just the teen, but what they hope to get out of it.

Very true.

Agree 100%.  Some teens would benefit from time in the military because their parents abdicated their responsibility to instill discipline.  Others might do well in the military primarily because they are already (relatively) well-disciplined.  Conversely, there are some who would not survive the military experience.

Personally, I was already well-disciplined before I enlisted in the U.S. Army.  I'm confident that my pre-existing discipline served me well while I serve my country.

I agree with David F.  My son (15) has wanted to join up since he was 5.  I told him to go ahead--as soon as he graduates from the Naval Academy in Annapolis.  He's currently working his way through the pre-application requirements.

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