MilParents – Let’s Get down to Basic

July 15, 2008 · Filed Under Basic Training, Military Parents, Parents News, This & That 

Training, that is. (Part one of five)

What to know or expect when your son or daughter goes to Basic Training – (now called Basic Combat Training)

First and foremost – be very proud of them.   The whole point of this training, is to take them from the adult they think they are – to the adult the Army/AirForce/Marines/Navy/Coast Guard wants to have. This is going to be a hard 9 weeks or more. 

Second – you won’t hear from them very often, if at all! They are not allowed to have their cell phones (this is sometimes difficult to fathom in this day and age) This is something you need to remember while your child is in the service – repeat after me: NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS.

From Some Soldier’s Mom: I have 3 sons that went to Basic (or Boot Camp)… and we received a brief phone call when each arrived at their destination (two at Great Lakes Naval Station and one at Fort Benning). We received two brief letters and a post card from the oldest (Navy) and then a few phone calls when permitted. We got two or three letters over the course of Navy Boot from the middle son and two phone calls. Army Sgt.s apparently do not want to be hearing from soldiers’ mommas and it was a requirement at Basic that they write home once a week or 10 days… although we did not start receiving letters until about his 3rd week into training. Parents have to realize that their sons and daughters are being physically and mentally stretched to the breaking point and they are so sore and tired at the end of EVERY day, that they sincerely do not have the energy to write letters home… and they do not have telephone privileges until very late into their training. My son said when he had to choose whether to take 15 minutes to write a letter or get 15 minutes extra of sleep — sleep won every time!! From LAW – I got a couple of scrawled notes – I’m tired, I’m tired, working hard, I’m tired, and 1 or 2 brief calls, hi, love you, tired He stood in line for a long time to call, but couldn’t talk for long – the line behind him was just as long! Tammy – Husband was so exhausted he managed to write postcards to the kids.. but not many calls – Sleep was the winner.

Their schedules are amazingly full.  Some of it doesn’t make much sense.  Their schedules are posted, on the website of the facility where they are training.  Links will be provided – Friday’s portion of this series.


*****Tomorrow – what to send and what NOT to send **************


3 Responses to “MilParents – Let’s Get down to Basic”

  1. Diane on July 15th, 2008 1:18 pm

    My son is a Marine. We got one phone call a day or so after he arrived. He read a statement to me and hung up — I never was sure just exactly what he said, but I was pretty sure it meant he was at Parris Island. It was a long 2 weeks of so before we received the first letter. After that, we got about 1 letter a week — definitely no more than that. And then one more phone call on Liberty Sunday — about a week and a half before graduation. It was a very long 13 weeks, but I cherish those hand-written letters more than anything!

  2. Mark (the other one) on July 15th, 2008 1:38 pm

    My son is in the Army. When he was in basic at Ft. Benning, I think the drill sergeants made them write home. I have about 60 letters written to us or his brothers. I’ve kept them all.

    We also received a few phone calls, but the lines at the phones were long. It meant we were on constantly on phone duty because we never wanted to miss one, which, unfortunately, we did once.

  3. Maura van der Linden on August 4th, 2008 2:13 am

    Hmm – my son is just out of OSUT at Ft. Benning and I got probably 4 letters through his 14 weeks of training. I also got 3-4 phone calls whuch was nice.

    When I talked to him a few days ago, he said he loved getting mail and tried to make time to write back but sometimes he just couldn’t stay awake long enough.

    I did get a wonderful letter on Mother’s Day that I’ll treasure forever, though.

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