Posted on Sep 12, 2017
Military Family
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I Belong to closed parent group on facebook for my sons BCT battlion. These are parents of recruits in his Battlion and Regiment. This weekend I saw a lot of messages from parents saying "my son just wrote me and hes coming home" and people getting phone calls of same tone. Im shocked. The parents group is now discussing ways to support kid if they make this choice - still love them etc.

I of course would still love my child but - I dont know - I raised my kid to commit to something. Finish what he started. I know recruits are allowed to quit Basic, but i would be super disappointed if he did. He comes from military family, we told him what to expect. Short of medical issues - which you cant control - I would not be happy if he choose to quit. Ive choosen to not sure my feelings with the group because I dont want to offend or hurt feelings.

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What do you think is the source for so many Failure to Adapts?
Makes me wonder what is happening in his Company. He seems fine - basically "Mom this sucks but its temporary - got my m4, training is interesting, Im hungry and need more sleep"
Posted in these groups: Fc859cb3 Basic Combat Training (BCT)
Edited 2 y ago
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SGT Recruiter
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Edited 2 y ago
The Army spends a very large amount of money trying to answer your question, and still hasn't.

I'm sure some older types will blame the "entitled millennial generation." But the reality has always been that there simply are some people who cannot handle the military, always has been, always will be, even if they're qualified for it. Most people- not just these darn millennials- have never handled the unique stresses that the military brings, and some just aren't cut out for it.

Every company has people drop- and I'm betting your sons company is nothing special, those Facebook groups always make me chuckle with parents commenting about THE HUGE NUMBER AND SO MANY PEOPLE HAVING PROBLEMS OMG THE ARMY IS MESSING UP...when in reality, 10-20 drops is absolutely normal for a BCT company. I usually advise parents not to get involved with them, because they present a seriously skewed picture of reality.
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LTC Medical Logistics & Capability Development Consultant
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Full metal jacket is nowhere close to the current basic training. I went to basic training in 1988 and it wasn’t even close them. There is definitely yelling there’s definitely things that are done that are hard but the over-the-top harassment of the Marine Corps Boot Camp is far gone. This does not get out what the issues were here that are being discussed; I’m simply responding to the full metal jacket please(Join to see)
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LTC Medical Logistics & Capability Development Consultant
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(Join to see) It doesn’t introduce the concept well or at all in most cases.
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LTC Medical Logistics & Capability Development Consultant
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PO2 Jim Speed Then, not now.
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LTC Medical Logistics & Capability Development Consultant
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SGT (Join to see) What is the point!? People brought up FMJ. Old movie, about an old time, so the @back in my day” comments are relevant!
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SGM Erik Marquez
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It may be as simple as, the service has made it easier to quit, put less effort and time in to retaining.
Its a tough call on a DS part to decide, is this one I stop working with, and let them quit, It would be better for both them and the service vice, "If I can only get them to hang in a bit longer, they will learn what that can take, endure, and realize that CAN make it, thus be better for it..."
Many moons ago when I was a DS, its was a numbers game to some point... Early in the cycle the BN would support a entry level separation (ELS) pretty much upon submission. "SM you want to go home? Yes? Ok there is your bus ticket, off you go"
And while "numbers" were not mentioned in front of company level cadre (that I know of), we all knew there was a magic number the BN CDR needed to graduate to be considered a success by his superiors, and falling below that was seen as a failure on his part (meaning his cadre) to train the SM properly.
So later in cycle (as the BN/BDE/ neared its "number" an ELS package had to have serious justification and even then, the SM was often moved to another company, or even recycled more than once.
The DS knew we did no one a favor by retaining those SM... The SM was set up for failure at their future unit, and the unit was set up for issues now having to deal with an SM that was not adapting, be it mentally, discipline issues, training inability, physicality weakness.
But going over the "number" was not something you could get the BN to do with ease .. AWOL maybe, physical attack on a fellow SM, only if it was a near deadly attack or sexual in nature.

Perhaps the Army came to its senses and decided it was better (cheaper even) to have fewer fully qualified SM at the end of the cycle, then passing on marginal at best SM to a unit, only to be separated later.
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CPT Lawrence Cable
CPT Lawrence Cable
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In 1982, the Army had already started to discharge the obvious non hackers, but it seemed to me that they kept them around for a long time screwing around before they actually released them. Always seemed like a waste of time to me. We lost three out of my squad, two could have been models for Full Metal Jacket's Gomer Pyle and Handjob, the other just absolutely quit cooperating and wanted to go home. My point being that once we got away from the draft and started to enforce some standards, there were simply people that couldn't or wouldn't meet those standards. We all like to point out how tough it was "Back When I Went Through", but I'm not sure the dropout rate is any greater now that it was 35 years ago.
In general, the personnel that I have met through my son and the young vets I met through Team River Runner are some of the finest troops I've known. They joined at a time when they knew the chances of being deployed to a war zone were pretty good and many of them stayed through 16 years of the War on Terror.
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PO2 Jim Speed
PO2 Jim Speed
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SGM Erik Marquez - I will guarantee you that Marine Drill Instructors were most certainly like, on the whole like Gunnery SGT Hartman. The difference is, you would have 3 DI's screaming at you at one time. Things changed after Vietnam. In Marine Corps JROTC our Senior Marine Instructor was a "Chosin Marine".. spent 5 years at Parris Island as a DI and then Senior DI. That man was scary as hell, we heard the stories from other Marines who knew him. The Army DI's may be tough.. but they are NOT Marines.. never will be.
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SGM Erik Marquez
SGM Erik Marquez
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PO2 Jim Speed - Your welcome to your opinions...And with fond memories Im sure.

Ive spent several weeks at PI with Marine DI's
Been there day and night, reception, all phases of marksmanship. Ect...We spent time at PI when we had a cycle break ..it was that or work on our barracks, get tasked out...

I'm very familiar with what a Marine Di is, does, is allowed to do... Great folks, awesome program, and head and shoulders above us in the Marksmanship program (or was when I was A DI) ..... and no, what you think the difference is between a Marine DI and what a good Army DI is not nearly as different as you think.
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SFC Intelligence Analyst
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Good grief - I'm glad my daughter can't join the military. (Transplant recipient - only has one kidney and the lifetime of rejection meds). If she were able to join and she called me up and said she just couldn't do it and she tried and tried - I would not berate her or tell her "no you can't come home" or disown her or anything. I would still love her and if she had tried and it just wasn't for her, than it isn't. After almost 14 years I know it's not for everyone and there have been some people I have no idea how they made it as far as they did.
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Sgt Field Radio Operator
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(Join to see) Good question. I went through Marine Corps Boot Camp, which is different than BCT. My father was an Air Force Captain and he was killed when his plane crashed in a training accident. He had served in WWII and Korea. I was seven at the time, and my mother died when I was 15. I joined because I thought it was the right thing to do. Boot Camp was a culture shock, but I would have died before quitting. You raised your children to finish what they start. As your son mentioned, it sucks, but it is temporary. Some of these other kids have probably not been taught to always finish what you start.
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