Civvy Mates - Tipping Point

I have a son who has been in for three years now. Over his short career I have often heard him talk of 'civvies' with the contempt that many in here often use. However, when he returns home on leave he is still popular with his civvy mates and gets out on the lash with them at every available opportunity.

He has just gone to Spain to stay with a civvy mate of his who is living there at the moment. Although I am not sure the mate in question will be best pleased by the surprise present he is taking for him, namely another two squaddies (but thats another story)

My question is, when do young lads eventually reach the tipping point and turn their back on old mates and revolve all their friendships around those in green? Reading many other threads in here it seems like its inevitable that it happens, I just wondered when. Do some people remain loyal to all of their friends, or am I being naive?
I have a number of freinds on both side of the wall.

Mates on the other hand tend to wear green.
same here i too have friends on both sides of the wall but i find im drifting further and further away from civvy mates
I think it depends on how close they were when they joined. Personally, I lost touch with my school pals pretty quickly but I knew lads who were still routinely in touch with theirs at the 6-8 year mark.

Your mates, as said, will always be the green ones. Even if you don't happen to actually like them all that much.
I had some civvie friends but i found myself drifting futher and futher away, maybe because i cant relate to them anymore i dont know, or maybe its there constant drug taking and moaning about day to day life that annoys me :p
I joined at 16 and as I'd only left school the friends I had just vanished, as most do once you finish with school. It wasn't until Granby when they suddenly started sending me kit out of the blue (magazines, toiletries, Branston etc) that it made me realise that I didn't really have that many civvy mates. I've been firm friends with all of them since then. A cracking bunch with big hearts.
Friendship is what you put into it I suppose.
Still friends with a handful of school and civvy mates and i've got over 10 years under my belt, One in particular I have known since day one at primary so well over 20 years!

I do get strange looks from some of the things that come out of my mouth during conversation but they now have a general idea of many squaddieisims!
I used to have civvy mate's, Cut my ties with them when i realised, with mates like that i didn't need enemies!
I have afew civvy friends, none of them match my friends in green though!


Book Reviewer
I think it must come down to familiarity doesn't it? You live and work with your green mates day in, day out for 24 hour periods. This means you know them inside out, and because of the nature of your job, you rely on them and trust them.

Even a civvy with civvy mates never gets such a close relationship.
I think it depends on personal experience, I have civvie mates who I've known since Primary school and still see on a regular basis, just spent an horrendously expensive weekend in Newquay with most of them! They're just a bloody decent bunch of working-class lads, you dont need to be in uniform to have that quality. My best mate in Uniform I've known from before we joined up.

The thing is though, mates you make while serving have experianced the same hardships, beastings and robust banter and your civilain counter-parts just dont understand, certainly those from a more middle-class background.

All soldiers share contempt for civilians, you get issued it with your 1157! doesnt mean we cant still be good mates with some of 'em!
I lost touch with all but 1 of my civvie mates when I joined up straight from school. On leave I'd still hang around/go for a pint with them but as time went by only one still remained a 'true' mate. Any discussion we found ourselves in would usually tumble into the usual squaddie bollox we all know and love and that 1 true friend seemed to be the only one who could keep up with the p1sstaking. Had he not followed a different path I'm positive he'd have been an excellent soldier so maybe that's the key. Funnily enough, I'm luck if I meet up with him from 1 year to the next now due to different locations but you can guarantee it's like squaddies, in that years can go by and it's as if you'd only had that last p1sh-up the weekend before.
I know I can't be the only one who gets this bored on leave?
Currently at the begining of my second week of three weeks block leave. I am going mad.

Even after a single week I'm chomping at the bit to get back to work. I just don't seem able to find enough things to do to fill the day, even going for runs, days out, nights in the pub, seeing friends, it's just a countdown to getting back to work and and having direction again.

Madness, but does anybody else get like this?

I also find that I do have a good strong set of civvie mates that I get along with, but I can't be arsed making new ones. The ones I've got I'm very close to and are a breed apart from what I consider "civvies," but only because I know them. Even the fact that they're all students doesn't bother me. However, I find myself disinterested in meeting their friends and actively find myself irritated by them, especially the ones who are also students, they piss me right off.

Sat in a student house having some bevvies after a night out, the topic of conversation turns to politics (as it ALWAYS seems to with drunk students, wanting to appear intellectual). I usually stay very quiet when this happens as I end up getting wound up, I just let it entertain me now.

One lad starts going on about not voting because he doesn't agree with democracy. I ask him why, and he says that the country is full of idiots who shouldn't be given the right to vote, there should be some sort of a test to prove that you're qualified,
Fair enough, says I, that isn't necessarily a terrible idealogy for a system. But if such a system was put in place, I think it'd be a better idea to allow those who provide a service integral to the country who should be given the right to say how the country is run.

"What, like doctors, and police? Yeah, but you'd have fucking squaddies voting, mate . . ."

I dearly hope you slapped him after that comment?
No, I didn't, I went outside for a cigarette, and came back inside to find he'd been given a verbal-shoeing by my collected mates.

It wasn't mentioned again, but he did keep running back and forth, getting my beers from the fridge for me.
Civvy mates, forget it,most are not mates,just friends. After leaving the green many years ago, i am still in regular contact etc with my mates from then.

Contrast the fact after 11 years in a factory,since it shut im in regular contact with two, others either dont want to know or why did you call, whats up routine.

Think most civvys are cnuts, wouldnt watch your front let alone your back.

One thing in the Army, you make mates for life not a free cup of coffee.
Friends.....mates??? Who needs 'em?!?! If you have friends how can you put in the true time to become a loan warrior like Rambo??? Tssk tssk! ;)
smudge67 said:
Friends.....mates??? Who needs 'em?!?! If you have friends how can you put in the true time to become a loan warrior like Rambo??? Tssk tssk! ;)
Rambo lent money? :D
When I joined up, I only kept contact with close mates (that also happened to be in the army, but different units then me). On leaving I have made new friends, but they all tend to be either ex-forces, or still serving and based in the area I live.

I don't think you every become a civvie again, and civvies will never understand the forces ways and sayings.

I have been out 15 years, and still give fire control orders towards any totty out on a sat night! - Try explaining how that works to a civvie (or your girlfriend!)
i got this email ages ago, it rings true aswell

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Get upset if you are too busy to talk to them for a week
MILITARY FRIENDS: Are glad to see you after many years; and will happily carry on the same conversation you were having last time you met.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Never ask for food
MILITARY FRIENDS: Are the reason you have no food

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Call your parents Mr and Mrs
MILITARY FRIENDS: Call your parents Mum and Dad

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Bail you out of jail and then tell you what you did was wrong
MILITARY FRIENDS: Would be sitting next to you saying,
'Mate...we stuffed up ....but what a giggle?

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Have never seen you cry

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Borrow your stuff for a few days then give it back
MILITARY FRIENDS: Keep your stuff so long they forget it is yours

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Know a few things about you
MILITARY FRIENDS: Could write a book with a shed full of direct quotes from you

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will leave you behind if that is what the crowd is doing
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will kick the backsides of whole crowds that left you behind

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Would knock on your door
MILITARY FRIENDS: Walk right in and say, 'I'm home, got any beer!

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Share a few experiences.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Share a lifetime of experiences no civilian could ever dream of.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will take your drink away when they think you've had enough

MILITARY FRIENDS: Will look at you stumbling all over the place and say,'You had better drink the rest of that, don't waste it. Then
they carry you home and put you safely to bed.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will talk crap to the person who talks crap about you.
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will knock the crap out of people who use your name
in vain

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Know where you buried the body
MILITARY FRIENDS: Helped you bury the body

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will call you 'mate' as a term of endearment
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will call you 'Wanker'or 'Tosser' as a term of endearment

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Are for a while.

CIVILIAN FRIENDS: Will ignore this
MILITARY FRIENDS: Will forward this to their military mates - (Done - to those who weren't on the original message!)
Spot on that,Colonel, spot on. :)
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
D The Intelligence Cell 77
Zega The NAAFI Bar 19
bloodgroup_o+ The NAAFI Bar 28

Similar threads

New Posts

Latest Threads