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Don‘t know Jack about army life...help!


A Mom

My 18 yr old son wants to sign up and I don‘t know much about being in the army, specifically daily life and training and schooling and deployment etc. I have a million questions. I have been a single mom since he and his sister were babies, so there are no men in our lives to help us through this.

If he signs up in July or August...when will he get in?
Does the army provide every single thing you need like toothpaste and razor blades etc.?
He doesn‘t have a career in mind for the regular world or for the army. Does he HAVE to pick one?
How much time is spent on classroom work and how much of the day is calisthenics and how much is weapons/fighting/war strategy training?
What hours is the schedule? 9 to 5pm mon-fri? I‘m sure it‘s not.
What can he do in his time off?
I have no idea what he will be doing when he goes.
Who gets sent overseas to places like Afghanistan...newly trained boys or more experienced ones?
This is a start....it‘s all pretty scary to me but I am proud of him.
BTW, is there a Public Relations dept. where there is someone I could call and get this type of general information?
Edit: just found "fitness guide" link in another post and that is good info.
Still I would like to know what will happen to him daily, weekly, monthly, year by year.
What will they have him do?
Hi Mom! Are you talking Reserve or Regular Force? Perhaps in both cases, one route you can go is for you and him (assuming no embarrassment for him to be seen with you :) ) to visit your nearest Recruiter. They can answer most if not all your questions personally. Perhaps you can also make arrangements with the Recruiter to visit your nearest neighbourhood military unit during the day to see them working.

If you‘re talking Reserves, with the Recruiter visit either all nearby units or whichever one seems to interest him the most (i.e. Infantry, Armoured, Artillery, Communications, etc) when they are PARADING (i.e. a day when everyone is in working, usually a weekend day). One of the Officers or Senior NCO‘s of any unit of interest should be more than happy to show you two around and answer your questions.

Good luck!
I also suggest talking to a recruiter.

Almost all the question varies and depends on if he joins the Regulars and Reserves, and what trade he takes. He would have to know exactly what he‘s getting into and what he will be doing, and why he‘s doing it.

Here is the e-mail address of a recruiter in Vancouver:


And Mom, I‘m so glad you are enthusiastic and proud of your son. My parents sure aren‘t. But I just have to deal with that.
Hello there, "A Mom". :)

I‘m not in the army or anything, but I have a few links on the internet that you might want to check, if you haven‘t done so already. Of course, talking to a recruiter is your best bet at understanding everything, but all I know about the Canadian Forces, requirments for application, etc., I found on their websites.

Canadian Army Website
Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School
Canadian Forces Recruiting
Career Profiles
Find a Recruiter by Postal Code
Canadian Forces Fitness Guide

And if he‘s interested in the Air Force or Navy:
Canadian Air Force Website
Canadian Navy Website

If you‘re in Mississauga, here‘s some recruiter info:

33 City Centre Drive,
Mississauga, ON
L5B 2N5
Tel: 905-803-2467
E-mail: mississauga@recruiting.forces.gc.ca

Hope this helps, and like Ruthless4Life said, I‘m also glad that you take interest in what your son wants to do. :D

Good luck! :)

Thank you all! :)
He wants to join full time. I did call the recruiting office in Mississauga and they didn‘t have much time to talk with me, or were not into it, and wanted to hang up fast. A few "yes m‘am‘s" and they were gone. That happened twice.
I don‘t want to embarass him but this is a serious decision and I am not 100% cool with it. Of course my problem is his safety. That is the ONLY concern I have, obviously. Otherwise the military is a wonderful organization. Every man I talk to says "best thing for him!" "make a man out of him!" blah blah blah.... Certainly, this is not the Boy Scouts.

I am going to go into the recruiting office myself then. I‘ll see how willing they are to talk to me. If I get the bum‘s rush I‘ll have to leave it to my son to do on his own.

Taking that tour is a great idea! And talking about the career choice ahead of time is really good advice. I really hope they will do this for him. Maybe he will prefer to take the tour alone while I wait in the office, but I would like to be able to talk to them some. It‘s hard to give up responsibility for him, you know. :(

I feel better already knowing we may be able to do that. I appreciate your help.

His safety, and his suddenly leaving is hard to get past. But he is anxious to make it on his own and has always been interested in the military, as I guess all of guys and gals were too. He keeps saying he‘d be in no more danger there than waiting here to get attacked or getting hit by a car, etc. I expect there will be attacks here in Canada eventually.
BTW, he doesn‘t know I‘m posting here. Shhhhh...

He is just becoming a man, and I will be his mom and dad just as I always have been. I‘ll back off when it‘s time. And that is **** soon it seems. But I‘ll always stand behind him if I can‘t stand beside him any more.
Here are the answers to most of the things you asked:


Have he talked to a recruiter yet?

And about the people that‘s talked to you with their "attitudes," I‘m sure they mean no disrespect. They are extremely busy and they barely have enough time to go through applications of potential recruits. :)
Thank you Ruthless4life. That‘s a great site.
I haven‘t come across that one before.

Yes I know they meant no disrespect. LOL
I have no prob with them. I could hear them rolling their eyes talking to someone‘s mom!
I don‘t blame them. ;)
One question I would appreciate answered is this: does a new recruit have to pick a career right away and start training on it right away?
What if they don‘t know which job would be right for them? I assume there will be some career counselling...or am I wrong?

I think this is my last question for now. :)
I think on the application there are four spaces:

List the occupations you wish to apply for:
1st choice:
2nd choice:
3rd choice:

You fill in 4 occupations above.

If you pass everything they may schedule you into Basic Recruit training. After the Basic training, you can then train in one of the occupation you‘ve chosen. Between each step there can be months of waiting, so you certainly don‘t train "right away."