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Peoples Attitudes changed when stated I was joining

I have people in my life who agree and disagree with my choice of joining the infantry.
My grandma for one. When I told her I was in the recruiting process, I could hear the objectivness in her voice.

Today, I finally finished all the tests and interviews. I passed my fitness test at the Y. So I called her to tell her as she asked me to keep her updated. After I told her I was just now waiting for the call (hopefully to be sworn in) we talked for a few more mintues and hung up.
A few mintues later, she called me back. She said she was just worried about "something happening", and then told me that she was proud of me.
See, there ya have it.
If your family and friends love you, they will eventually see the light.
You did.
That's why your here.
baudspeed said:
I cant beleive the response to my question. I really appreciate the support guys (and gals). Its been kinda weird around my freinds/co-workers lately, but this was a great pickmeup. A few more months and i will be in a position to start the paper work. (ie will be in peak shape).

Thanks a bunch for the perspective!

If you meet the minimum requirements now, apply now. The application process can take up to TWO YEARS, you will have plenty of time to get into peak shape while waiting for your security clearance, offer etc.
Well when I first started the process of joining (10 Months ago) I didn’t think it would affect any of my friendships.  By and large I was right.  I had a few very negative reactions.  Mostly the friends I met through the NDP (Yes I volunteered),  wow,  I didn’t know I knew so many freak shows.  (Apparently Afghanistan was a civil war and we have no right to be there but Darfur is a crisis we should send troops to even though one side doesn’t want us there, we wouldn’t do much good anyways and … grrr I’m stopping now)  I honestly lost all respect I ever had for them, and it made me sad.  (I console myself by visualizing them choking on their own undeserved sense of self satisfaction.)

I know a few of my Afghan friends felt uncomfortable, but it quickly went away. *shrug* (They kind of figured out why I was practicing my Dari out on them)

But yea, 99.99% of the people I know aren’t even involved enough to be ambivalent. Which reminds me,  I’m doing it for me,  not them.  Besides I’ve just spent the last 10 months going through a process similar to chewing on tinfoil to do this,  what do I care what others think.  :)
Well, surprisingly, alot of my friends (Who are anti-war) have been understanding. They don't like it but they understood, mainly because they are my friends and they are good ones. I've obviously got stupid answers (Mostly not from my anti-war friends) like:

- I'd join but I don't want to die. (I usually just say 'good job' to this answer)
- Man you're gonna shoot some s***-n******! (As if it's a good thing)
- Think of what you'll leave behind! (I usually tell them I can take my computer with me =) )
- Man army is stupid you're gonna have such a good chance of dying. I'm gonna join the police. (I also reply with 'good job')
- Why would you want to go to Afghanistan?

It's weird for me because the people I know who you would expect to say 'Hey that's great' are actually not very supportive.
My Dad thinks I should join something that involves maybe a trade or something like that, (Engineers, Mechanics and the like)
My Mom doesn't mind me joining but the mother in her obviously worries.

My grandma hates it and my grandpa did too. (They are WWII/Depression people and I think it's more than understandable in some cases why they wouldn't support it.)

But to be fair, my reaction has been mainly positive, or supportive.
My girl, surpirisingly supported me, she knew its wat i wanted to get into, and that i take sh*t sirously
My family didnt really care, they just said "yeah its gonan be hard"
My grandparents were mad, but i dont care they dont live with me

My cuzin is in the army , so he was happy ::)
GO!!! said:
I'll be retired at 39 - mortgage paid off, looking for a new job - having travelled the world, my own country and driven myself physically and mentally to the breaking point.

I hate it when people think that's a negative thing, like it's something they're better off avoiding.  Well said GO!!!  :salute:

Most of my friends have been pretty supportive, although most of them would never make the same choice I've made.  I've spent a few years in the reserves before transfering to reg force so I think most of my friends felt that I knew what I was getting myself into.  Some things I get a lot
- Wow, a pilot in the air force... so you're, like, joining the army  :blotto:
- So you would kill someone?
- So you could be in afghanistan soon couldn't you?  (I'm leaving for botc on Friday, so no)
- So you did all that school for nothing?  (HA!)

My father's very proud of my choice.  My mom's worried, but her brother is just finishing up his career as a tac hel pilot so she knows what's involved.  The thing that's reassured me the most about my choice is that, without exception, the people who've been the most happy for me are the men and women I've met who're already in the forces.  Not just pilots, everyone.

I was at a bar last night and heard two waiters talking.  One of them was trying to get the other to stop complaining about work because "nobody likes working."  I just laughed to myself.
One of the guys here has a quote as his signature that follows basically like this.
Johnny Noclue - "Why'd you join the army?"
Awesome Forces guy "Because i just found i didnt have enough digging, shooting, blowing stuff up, driving armoured vehicles and doing awesomely cool stuff in my life".
I find that gets people off your back. For me personally when someone asks me about it, you can tell almost straight away how they feel about the forces, if its positive i talk to them. If its negative and i dont want to argue with the person then i use humour to get them to see i'm not the baby killing, woman murdering, innocent basher that they might want me to be...Then i change the topic. To some people its not worth explaining, to others you can really show them what a top job we do and they appreciate it.
I had a mixed reaction from my family when i joined up, my dad didnt want to talk to me for a fair while (He's a buddhist and when i said i was thinking about joining didnt get the greatest reaction from him) but he's really good about it now, he realises i love my job, i'm in Canada doing it and he likes that i've got a career ahead of me.
You've got to choose your battles when it comes to talking to people, but if its just pure ignorance through a lack of education about the forces you can talk to them, show them, tell them and make them see that we do a great job.
I am now into my second incarnation in the CF.  The first time around I was quite young, fresh from civi U. and my parents and friends thought I was crazy.  They understood nothing of the CF.  The second time around,  they were thrilled at my return.  So much so that they encouraged my much younger brother to join.  In my family's case, it was ignorance that scared some, offended others.  There was a fair bit of anti-military bias that had been fed by the media that they latched onto. 
I find that people's attitudes do change somewhat, usually more negative so far from civilians. I'd rather be treated like any other regular person, but usually they can tell by the haircut, and when one idiot in the military does something stupid it unfortunately reflects on the rest of the CF. Personally, while some do love the army, I would never encourage my kids to join the regular force until they matured enough and had post secondary under their belt.
This is an angle thatI was looking for in here.

I currently work for a largeish organization as a manager and have about 200 staff of supervisors and frontline folks that I am responsioble for.  In the organization there are two other mangers at my level and I haven't told them that I have applied yet.  I told the CEO who is my direct supervisor but I am fearful of passing the news around to a larger audience at work because I know that my ideas and planning will get shelved as I would become a lameduck.  I know its the same for anyone who is planning a move out of an organization but  because of how long the process takes I just don't want to be ineffective for several months.

I know from office talk that these folks totally respect the army and what they do.  Its a really liberal/academic environment, in the true sense - not the false sense, like at a university (more closed minds there than at the morgue).  The people there respect me and my choices in all things and will be totally in for it.  I just don't want the five months+ departure to be a hinderance on my team and leave them in limbo while I run the gauntlet of the application.

As for others...
My brother in law is just finishing the RCMP training and he is jazzed about it.  ("Theres this guy here who used to be in the army and when he shoots, holy crap its good.  He told us he didn't even use pistols, just rifles,  but damn!"

My wife is worried about the time away (who's isn't?) but is happy that I'll be doing what I want and is looking forward to living in montreal during language training.  I swear to god shes even excited about a posting in Shilo or Pet.  We are outdoor hounds and don't really care about the city life.

My mom and grandma are very proud of my choice.  My Grandfather was a vet and he left a good legacy.

My friends are all for it.  My best friends has a brother in the Navy as a diver and lives vicariously through his life as a super sexy newfoundland diver that gets all the fat chicks from the bay.

My mother in law is another story... She has two grandkids.  My 6 month son and my brother in laws(RCMP guy) 7 month son.  They just got posted to Thompson MB, (we are all northern albertans) and now I'm going to get posted to some place really far away and then get killed thereby ruining my son.  I am taking her grandchild away from her and that is the end of the world.
...to her,... I just say Westjet.  I hate to say it because a day with her visiting is a day I want to cut my toesoff and sew them back on by myself.

You know people just don't understand what the CF is all about. They only see what they want to see. I'm a military brat, and even if I didn't join it's still the best family in the world.  No matter what you're going through or even what you are feeling, there's a good chance that they went through it also.
Nothing can replace the feeling of belongning somewhere, and being with people that understand you and that are in the same boat as you.
Don't worry about what everyone else says, if it's you're calling, you feel it in your bones and in your heart.  Remember, you have to love you job since you'll spend 90% of your life doing it.  From experience with the military family, no one that I meet ever regretted it.

Welcome to the family ;)
paracowboy said:
like a sheepdog in the middle of a flock of sheep? Don't worry about it. You feel out of place because you are out of place. You don't belong with the sheep. You belong with us, watching over them. You'll feel better once you're with your own kind.

I suspect you are referring (intentionally?) to this essay by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, U.S. Army (Ret.) , which I've sent to a few people ... someone probably already posted it here somewhere, so here's just a sampling:

If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen, a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath, a wolf. But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? What do you have then? A sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero's path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.

Let me expand on this old soldier's excellent model of the sheep, wolves, and sheepdogs. We know that the sheep live in denial, which is what makes them sheep. They do not want to believe that there is evil in the world. They can accept the fact that fires can happen, which is why they want fire extinguishers, fire sprinklers, fire alarms and fire exits throughout their kids' schools.

But many of them are outraged at the idea of putting an armed police officer in their kid's school. Our children are thousands of times more likely to be killed or seriously injured by school violence than fire, but the sheep's only response to the possibility of violence is denial. The idea of someone coming to kill or harm their child is just too hard, and so they chose the path of denial.
You know people just don't understand what the CF is all about. They only see what they want to see. I'm a military brat, and even if I didn't join it's still the best family in the world.  No matter what you're going through or even what you are feeling, there's a good chance that they went through it also.
Nothing can replace the feeling of belongning somewhere, and being with people that understand you and that are in the same boat as you.
Don't worry about what everyone else says, if it's you're calling, you feel it in your bones and in your heart.  Remember, you have to love you job since you'll spend 90% of your life doing it.  From experience with the military family, no one that I meet ever regretted it.

Welcome to the family

Personally, nothing will ever replace my real family. I did have that kind of family atmosphere while I was in basic, but since then not as much, don't get me wrong their is still some cameradrie. I still find that this life is more or less just a job, thats it. Personally I would have been just as happy, or even happier doing my previous job.
baudspeed said:
I have a question regarding how people around you acted when you stated that you were going to join the CF? I have  had such a large mixed reaction from friends and family that i felt at times that maybe i was being crazy. I am joining because i am (what i consider) well read on what Canada has done for the world, and want to participate, even if that means I am put in harms way.
However, when i tell them that i am making a career change, they smile and encourage me to be adventurous, then when they ask what i will be doing, and i tell them that i am intending to give the army some of my time, their faces drop and i get the 'Thats nice' smile, and the conversation stalls out. At which time, i feel somewhat out of place.

Anyone else had experiences like this? does it end once you are in? Am I the only one who is in this boat?

yeah, I'm still going through it. My whole family doesn't like it and tries to convince me not to. aside from my family most of my friends don't want me joining either, allot of them just don't say anything (thankfully) because the know this is what i want to do so the support that fact not the joining that military part.
every ones in awhile you get some people that fully support you, but that's not to often at all.
I've gotten some pretty ignorant things said to me before when some people heard i applied too, the worst one was "i hope you get shot or step on a land mine". Then ones you join I've heard from some soldiers you'll have some people spit on you, and call you a baby killer, etc...
but if you really want to join, you will just set aside everyones opinions and comments, not matter how bad they are and just do it.
it's your life and if this is want you want to do with it then that's awesome.
it's not a job to get rich off of, it's a job to help people and to be proud of what you do and make a difference.
Comments I got were mostly negative. Many people said I was too smart for the army, especially the infantry. *Lil* I'm not smart enough to understand why stupidity is an asset in war, so I should be OK. Some were concerned for my safety. Some are not big fan of violence, or obeying politicians. Politicians have very low public esteem these days.

But some comments were positive. I'm just turned 30 and I felt some guys would love to throw their current life at the window and start something new like me. Others seem impressed that I volunteered for something that hard. And some understand that we need armed forces and respect the work that has been done oversea over the last years.

I don't think everyone would like this kind of job, but I'm not asking them to join with me either, so it should be OK. :)
When I joined, I experienced the same kind of cr*p. I'm glad I did join anyway.

I went to tech. college and stuff, you know, some go to university , and at some point in their life, they want something new, just like me. There is nothing wrong with this.

Now, I regret I didn't join earlier in my life. There is nothing like the army in the civvie world. You go places and do things you'll remember for life. I'm not saying that the military is perfect or anything, but it's different alright!
Your peers will adjust.
Like most people I have had a mixture of opinions from my family and friends.  I joined the army this year through the ROTP, me being a CELE.  My best friend was supposed to apply with me but he got talked out of it by his family telling him the Army isn't as good as they are saying.  So now I am going to University to get a full Bachelors and it is all being paid for while he is going to a college to get a diploma which he has to pay for himself with the help of his RESPs.  So during the summers, he has to work at Safeway while I will be doing something much more interesting, IAP/BOTC/SLT or my job training.

My father used to drive a Leopard out in Gagetown and he was married to my mother at the time so they were fine with me joining.  Infact they were the ones who told me about the ROTP program.

My brothers, they are a bit young to understand.  They just think it is cool that I am in the CF.  I am trying to convince my youngest brother to try and join Reserves at 16 or Reg Forces as infantry when he is out of high school.  That is still a while to go so we will see what happens.

My one set of grandparents never really told me or gave any signs of their opinion on my joining.  My other grandparents were born and lived in Europe, they are always asking me when I am getting out of the army and what I am going to do when my contract expires.  When I tell them that I will just resign they don't believe it.

My Aunts and Uncles are supportive of me too.  My one uncle who has had drug and alcohol problems actually told me that he was proud of what I was doing and he wanted me to know that.

My friends are supportive of my joining, they know that I believe everyone should be in the military for some period in their life and they are totally behind me, albeit, they are worried that I could die.

My peers who are not so close to me, have told me a variety of things.  I have been told that I am now owned by the CF and that I am their b****.  I have been told I am going to Afghanistan/Iraq and I am going to die.  I have been told I have a deathwish.  The best of the worst things that people have told me: I was telling this kid about how I am in the army explaining to him about the ROTP program.  He started telling me that he was thinking about joining but he decided to get a "real" job and that I would never learn any life skills by joining the army.

My employer was very supportive of me.  She actually took the time to write me a letter of recommendation for the CF.

Teachers, like my high school peers, had very different opinions.  Most of them didn't want to say anything bad to me they just told me be careful and not to get killed.  My one teacher was in the reserves for a good few years so he was the most supportive of me joining.  One substitute teacher was asking my physics class what we were doing after high school, since it was close to grad time.  I told her I was in the military and she actually told me that she had a huge amount of respect toward me.  That is the only time a teacher has said that to me, then again, people who say that could never join themselves.

I think the biggest reason people automatically think that you will die if you join the CF is because they do not know that there are combat and non combat trades.
ChaosTheory said:
I think the biggest reason people automatically think that you will die if you join the CF is because they do not know that there are combat and non combat trades.

I think you give them too much credit.

It always amazes me that students put so much stock in what teachers and guidance councillors say outside of their classroom areas of expertise.

Education is universally regarded as one of the extremely "easy" degrees to get, and a ticket to a safe union job where your aptitude can only ever be measured by your experience.

Yet young people place unlimited stock in what these people say in regards to future career choices and pruded courses of education, training and work.

Listen to your teachers when they teach you something, but when they talk about the "real world" just nod and smile.