Author Topic: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?  (Read 4164 times)

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Offline WetHerAll

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Hey guys, so this is my first time posting here; I have a few questions i would like to ask about the infantry. First i would like start off by saying Infantry is really my calling, i've been preparing myself to apply in the army for the last 2 years sadly ive had some minor set backs. I'm 22 years old, i have a soon to be wife who is 6 1/2 months pregnant. I mainly haven't applied for the army because i had to go back and finish high school which is hard to afford when your out on your own with a low paying job :P But in recent events I'm getting my high school equivalency in June.
Ive read all kinds of forums on the infantry i know its not a 9-5 kind of job i do realize ill be away from home quite often, but with no more missions out in afghan i'm guessing you'll be on base often just training, can u still have a Family and raise a child as a infanteer? Is it hard to find a home near or on base for your family? Most Infantry forums people would say your better off single with no kids but is there anyway around that? Because deep down i know i'm made for the infantry. But i don't want to miss half my kids life.
Surely there must be some infantry guys who have kids and wife back home that could tell me what it's like for them.
Hope someone could help me out here thanks  :nod:

Offline DAA

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2014, 19:31:53 »
Your watching far too many war movies.  I'm no different, than the person who lives in the apartment/house next door, down the street, etc.  I work Monday to Friday early morning to late afternoon or maybe a shift worker.  Do pretty much the samethings you do.  But from time to time, I might have to go on the road.  Sometimes for a short time, sometimes for a long time.

But my employer has on site housing that I can apply for and I pay for it too.  Heck, they even have great benefits for me that I probably couldn't find anywhere else.

Infantry, Armoured, Med Tech, RMS Clk, Supply Tech, Officer, NCM.  It's all pretty much the same, just one big happy family.

Don't read so far into it.
Got a question that you're afraid to ask online?  PM me!  I don't bite........

Offline WetHerAll

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2014, 21:00:16 »
Maybe i have watched too many war movies  :facepalm:  but i just had too make sure that this was possible. No one in my family supports the fact that i want to be in the military except for my loving girlfriend. My mother seems to think she will never see me again aha. Thanks for the update really appreciated :)

Offline DAA

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2014, 21:16:04 »
Maybe i have watched too many war movies  :facepalm:  but i just had too make sure that this was possible. No one in my family supports the fact that i want to be in the military except for my loving girlfriend. My mother seems to think she will never see me again aha. Thanks for the update really appreciated :)

My mother said pretty much the same thing.  Read this.......and look at all those links on the forces.ca website.  Don't just take for granted, what you hear from friends or friends of friends.

http://www.forces.ca/en/page/forfamilies-151
Got a question that you're afraid to ask online?  PM me!  I don't bite........

Offline Dimsum

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2014, 21:21:34 »
My mother seems to think she will never see me again aha. Thanks for the update really appreciated :)

Skype, etc. (obviously when not in the field) is a wonderful thing. 
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

Offline Canadian Courage

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Family life in the Army?
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2017, 05:01:01 »
Hello everyone, I am a prospective Infantry Officer with a question I hope can be answered on this site. How is the balance of family life in the Army, more specifically, Infantry trade? I have heard many things over the years from people of many ranks and backgrounds, but besides the regular complaints about crap duties, poor equipment, and poor administration, I have heard little about how military life is on your loved one's (more specifically in my case GF/possible future wife). Basically what I want to know is how hard is the military life on relationships, and while I know this is a loaded question I would like to know anything that you have experienced that could have been prepared for or proactively dealt with. Also, while I understand training and deployments/tours can be a extremely large cause of strain, is there anything that happens while at home/base that is hard to deal with.

Thank you all for reading, this is my first post on this site but it is probably the most important question I have wondered about since deciding this is the way I wanted to go in life. Into the CAF that is :cdnsalute:
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 05:08:13 by Canadian Courage »

Offline mariomike

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Re: Family life in the Army?
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2017, 08:05:37 »
How is the balance of family life in the Army, more specifically, Infantry trade?

See also,

Military and family life 
http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,46902.0/nowap.html

Regular Force Family Life etc... 
http://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=83083.0

The Military and Your Family Thread- Merged 
http://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=20830.0

Military - Family Life Balance 
https://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=97489.0

How often will I get relocated if I have a family? 
https://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=120571.0

YOUR FAMILY- YOUR RESPONSIBILITY - NOT THE MILITARY's - IMPORTANT 
https://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,30772.0/nowap.html

is there anything that happens while at home/base that is hard to deal with.

Forces.ca
Life on a base
https://www.canada.ca/en/department-national-defence/services/caf-jobs/life/info-families.html#life

etc...
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 08:46:23 by mariomike »
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Offline Simian Turner

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Re: Family life in the Army?
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2017, 10:23:27 »
Hello everyone, I am a prospective Infantry Officer with a question I hope can be answered on this site. How is the balance of family life in the Army, more specifically, Infantry trade?... . Basically what I want to know is how hard is the military life on relationships... Also, while I understand training and deployments/tours can be a extremely large cause of strain, is there anything that happens while at home/base that is hard to deal with.

Firstly, work life-balance is a tricky equation.  Military life is not hard on strong relationships it is hard on the people in them - how they react to sudden, scheduling changes and absences.  I served almost 30 years - 15 in Artillery and 15 as Health Care Admin.  I lived in a hotel for 4 years, two hours from my wife and 3 teenagers so that their lives could remain stable while I ate alone. In the 3rd year of that arrangement my wife living alone in a 5 bedroom house - all of the children had finished school and moved away.  Our marriage has survived but not without emotional scarring.

The hardest part is inevitably every time you prepare for a long absence something destabilizing will happen
 - 3 weeks before I deployed to Afghanistan our basement started flooding, as I was flying away the remediation crews were starting clean-up. 
- While preparing to go on course for 5 months in Texas, the electricity meter and main fuze box to our home failed. 
- My two young children (at the time) were admitted to hospital for dehydration while I was on a long courses.
- Cars breakdown.

All of that to say, you need a strong family and friend support network to assist your gf/wife while you are away.  In cases where that was not reliable, awful emotional scars remain.

Keys to survival:
- trust - which must be earned and re-established frequently
- sense of humor
- good communication
- be transparent about what you know about scheduled events and be prepared to debunk the rumour mill's churnings
- you can never make amends for the chain of commands screw-ups, you can only seek forgiveness
- forgiveness must be sought and given each time or the wounds will never heal
- as much fun as you have together, you have to be comfortable being apart - whether it is one night, one month or six months
- reunion encounters are fun but those honeymoon moments quickly evolve into 'honey-do' lists and projects
- if she can't rely on and trust you, then you will be replaced by her friends and her new 'special' friend
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 10:26:59 by Simian Turner »
The grand essentials of happiness: something to do, something to love, something to hope for.  Allan K. Chalmers

Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Family life in the Army?
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2017, 12:11:29 »
Hello everyone, I am a prospective Infantry Officer with a question I hope can be answered on this site. How is the balance of family life in the Army, more specifically, Infantry trade? I have heard many things over the years from people of many ranks and backgrounds, but besides the regular complaints about crap duties, poor equipment, and poor administration, I have heard little about how military life is on your loved one's (more specifically in my case GF/possible future wife). Basically what I want to know is how hard is the military life on relationships, and while I know this is a loaded question I would like to know anything that you have experienced that could have been prepared for or proactively dealt with. Also, while I understand training and deployments/tours can be a extremely large cause of strain, is there anything that happens while at home/base that is hard to deal with.

Thank you all for reading, this is my first post on this site but it is probably the most important question I have wondered about since deciding this is the way I wanted to go in life. Into the CAF that is :cdnsalute:

As explained by Jack Welch, whether in the CAF or not:

“There’s no such thing as work-life balance,” Mr. Welch told the Society for Human Resource Management’s annual conference in New Orleans on June 28. “There are work-life choices, and you make them, and they have consequences.”

https://blogs.wsj.com/juggle/2009/07/13/jack-welch-no-such-thing-as-work-life-balance/
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Canadian Courage

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2017, 17:47:47 »
Thank you all so much for your responses, it makes me feel a lot more at ease. :)

Offline Krissa

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2017, 19:29:52 »
I agree- a relationship takes work whether a spouse is in the military or not. 26 years together and still going strong.

 Hardest parts? The many Deployments to Bosnia and Afghanistan due to the worry and anxiety on my part. I turned into a news junky who slept with the laptop on and the phone charging beside the bed.

Also not fun- those early years of field Exercices and floods and ice storms and bug outs and courses.  It was disruptive and often meant I was scrambling for childcare. Now a days our home life is much more stable and predictable than it was when he was a corporal.

We also did the IR thing for awhile (3 years almost)and it was pretty awful for hubby- kind of lonely and feeling useless to help us with anything. I didn't hate it though because we saw him almost every weekend.

In the end -hard work, humour and willingness to forgive and to trust have gotten us very far. Our professional lives are thriving and our son is almost ready for college. Totally worth the sacrifices.


Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2017, 19:39:05 »
I agree- a relationship takes work whether a spouse is in the military or not. 26 years together and still going strong.

 Hardest parts? The many Deployments to Bosnia and Afghanistan due to the worry and anxiety on my part. I turned into a news junky who slept with the laptop on and the phone charging beside the bed.

Also not fun- those early years of field Exercices and floods and ice storms and bug outs and courses.  It was disruptive and often meant I was scrambling for childcare. Now a days our home life is much more stable and predictable than it was when he was a corporal.

We also did the IR thing for awhile (3 years almost)and it was pretty awful for hubby- kind of lonely and feeling useless to help us with anything. I didn't hate it though because we saw him almost every weekend.

In the end -hard work, humour and willingness to forgive and to trust have gotten us very far. Our professional lives are thriving and our son is almost ready for college. Totally worth the sacrifices.

That would look great on the front page of a national newspaper... seriously.  :salute:
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Krissa

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2017, 23:51:30 »
Thank you daftandbarmy!

Offline Dimsum

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2017, 00:21:00 »
That would look great on the front page of a national newspaper... seriously.  :salute:

Agreed.  That would be great on a "Letters to the Editor" when the next news story slamming the CAF for lifestyle comes up.
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Is Infantry still a good career choice for a family man?
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2017, 01:25:12 »
Thank you daftandbarmy!

Are you kidding? Thank you...
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon