single mums joining the army

Discussion in 'Join the Army - Regular Soldier Recruitment' started by yorkie_1987, Oct 16, 2008.

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  1. Hi, I am just begining the process of (hopefully) joining the army, got my first appointment in a couple weeks. I am a single mum of one, and just wondering if theres any other single mums joining or already in.

    Always nice to get advice from people in the same situation :D
     
  2. As someone who has had single parents working for him before, have you got a proper understanding of what you are trying to get into? Do you have alternative childcare plans that can last, at short notice, for several months at a time? Can you cope with the seperation that will come with Phase 1 and possibly Phase 2 training?

    I only ask this to try and ensure your eyes are open before you get to a point where you can't easily change things if it isn't for you.
     
  3. Any single parent should have back up plans for dealing with the kids, because as an Armed Forces you will be required to deploy to Operation Theatres for upto 6 months & being a single parent may not excuse you all the time.

    But least you'll get a quarter for both you and your little one. once you've passed out of phase 2 training & there is always a great support element within the armed forces.

    Contact a few of the below for any details regarding welfare issues :)

    http://www.army.mod.uk/welfare-support/family/1153.aspx

    http://www2.army.mod.uk/soldierwelfare/supportagencies/aws/index.htm

    http://www.mfsg.org.uk/links/linkList.asp?linkCatID=2

    and there are newly enlisted single mum's within the army now, Ive one in my unit :)

    good luck
     
  4. Do you really want advice or do you want reasurance for what you are doing?

    A lot depends on how old your child is. If it is young then do you really want to be a mum? If it is older then do you really want to distrub their schooling? Being in the Army and having a child is hard enough with two parents but without the support of a partner to take on the child care role it will be tough on the child, do you really want this for them? Are you planning on using family for support, if so are you sure that your parents want another child?

    Are you being selfish? I've heard so many times mums saying that I want to do this for me. Well tough, you had the child now you look after it properly for the rest of your life.
     
  5. One of my friends is a single, serving, mother of two, and she struggles. Its not just the long absences from going on tour, its little things like never going to a squadron p!ss up because she cant drink coz she has to get back for the child minder, its not going on weekends away because she can't get an all weekend babysitter and turning down a post to Belgium because she would be too far away from her mum who helps with the childcare from time to time. Do you think you could cope with all of that? Can you handle the mentality whereby the Army comes first?
     
  6. The Army doesn't come 1st.........I do :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Yep, at least the Army last more than 3 seconds...... :wink:
     
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  8. Good luck. Once you get through narrow minded attitudes towards single parents you will find the Army has lots of support and Im sure that you have plans in place for when you WILL deploy.

    Army life isnt (all) about piss ups and being 'one of the lads' (as many married blokes will attest to). The maturity of parent hood and responsibilities that come with it, especially being single, will stand you in good stead when it comes to promotion.

    Its good to see a single parent making a positive step, not just taking the easy option....
     
  9. Bowmore_Assassin

    Bowmore_Assassin LE Moderator Book Reviewer

    If you join, good on you and good luck. However, this is not a decision to make lightly as a single mum:

    Deployment on ops is not optional - you will be expected to go and you will not have a choice - you will and must be able to make provision ofr full time child care when you deploy. Also, a six month tour can and does sometimes mean a bit longer and when you add in obligatory training, a tour can be a lot longer (albeit with breaks in the training like the odd weekend).

    You will also be expected to deploy on exercise if not on ops and these can vary in duration from a couple of days to months. Same detail - you will have to go and your child will be left behind and you will have to provide full time care.

    Normal in barracks duties. Short notice overnight jobs, guard duties, late night working on occaisions, and so on, are all part of daily Regimental or battalion life. You will have to do these. Again, back to childcare.

    I do not want to put you off and every single mum in the military I have met (not many) makes great sacrifices to serve. Also, they have pretty much all had very strong family support with Grandparents normally bearing the brunt of the child support burden during absences. Do you have such support ?

    The bottom line is the Army will come first. If you can deal with that (and the seperation from you child this will entail) and you have a way of providing full time child care when you are not there, then join and good luck to you. And you will have a rewarding, fulfilling career for the time you saty in.

    But you must be realistic. Don't join under the illusion that none of the above will happen to you and the Army will let you stay at home because you have a child - it will happen to you, because at times it will be soldier first, mum second, no matter what you think.

    I wish you luck.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  10. 3 seconds??!! I'm not that good!! :(
     
  11. Hey thanks for your replies...

    I do have childcare planned out for my son, his dad has already said that whenever needed he will have my son and yes that will include short notice an possible long periods.

    I'm under no illusion that the army will treat me any different just because I am a single mum and thats another reason for me, as civvy street do tend to treat single parents differently, atleast they have done to me, I have been applying for many jobs and as soon as I mention being a single parent it practically kisses that job goodbye..

    To me the army is a career and something I have thought about for a good few years, but obviously having my son I just thought it would just be a thought now, But for some reason this is still strong in me and I still wish to join.

    I'm wanting to do this for me and my son, I understand the drawbacks, but most jobs/careers have some drawbacks/disadvantages, but most of the jobs in civvy street dont have as many advantages as the Army do.

    Life is never crystal clear and at some point everyone has to make sacrifices. Yes so not seeing my son at times will become hard but not impossible. If I am on tour my point will just be that I am there to do my job and do it well..

    I'm not planning on joining up straight away, as like a few of you have said, I don't want to be making a mistake that will cost 4years.

    Thanks for all the good luck messages, really appreciate all the replies you guys have sent ;-)
     
  12. Also just wanted to add that when I do join I will hopefully be going into either military administrator(clerk) or technical supply specialist..

    I have spoke to family and friends about this, but not knowing the army they automatically picture me sat there shooting and being shot at, I guess some people are still a little naive that the Army isn't just gun-fights and brawls eh... :D
     
  13. You've not been to Sennelager yet :)

    Edited to add: Good luck, with the right attitude you'll go far, and so far it's looking positive.
     
  14. Well, that's refreshing to hear, as so many others appear not to have grasped the realities of service life as a parent, single or otherwise.

    Everyone is entitled to serve their country and to a good career, so I hope that when you do join, it is everything that you hoped that it would be.

    It'll be hard, but the longer you stick at it, the more you will adapt to it. Just don't expect it to adapt to you. That's not how it works, but you sound like you've already worked that bit out for yourself.

    Good luck to you, you are making a good choice of career, but if I could offer a bit of advice at this point it would be to find a female soldier (a real one, over on the other site, not here), and have a good long chat about what lies ahead for you. Forewarned, is forearmed as they say.
     
    • Like Like x 1

  15. whats the other site you talk about, I have been searching for websites about women in the army but meeting brick walls..
     
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