Life in the navy.. anything i might want to know ?

@Sissygrl (10914)
Canada
September 16, 2009 8:06am CST
I dont want to be caught off guard by anything.. my husband is joining the navy.. We live on the east coast of canada and we are 90% sure he will be posted here after doing something asking around.. i know he will be out at sea a lot. and i know there is a chance he may be posted elsewhere. What i'm wondering is, is there anything i'm in for that i'm looking past.. ? i think its a good move for him because its a very well paying job, and he's actually interested in a job they offer from within the navy.. he wants to be able to travel, and he needs some routine in his life. instead of jumping from day to day with a different schedule. Are we underestimating life in the navy? I feel happy we are going to be better off financially, and happy that he will be doing something he enjoys doing as a job instead of hating going to work every day. and happy when he's home he's home and not sleeping through the day. My kids will be SO happy they will get to spend time with their daddy in the day. downside they will miss him when he's away.. All information and experiences welcome. PLEASE share with me your thoughts, feelings and wisdom on said subject!
2 people like this
13 responses
@BStuff (498)
• United States
17 Sep 09
I'm not sure the differences between the Canadian Navy and the US both I've had many family members in the US Navy including my dad. A lot of my childhood I remember spending at that gate. The one where he would leave for 6 months then come back. I remember watching him leave. I also remember my brother having a very hard time when he was gone. My brother would act out whenever he left. My oldest brother just joined the Navy last year. He went through all the training and goes on his first offical sail in a few months. He absolutely loves it. He hates being away from his wife so much but loves the life. My mom raised 4 kids with a husband in the Navy and did a great job at it but it did get lonely at times. One of the biggest things is don't be surprised if you get shipped somewhere unexpected quickly. We moved a lot growing up and half the time we had no idea it was coming.
@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
17 Sep 09
I think that part is where the canadian and US navy differs.. i know the army gets shipped a lot.. but the only ports realyl are on oppisite sides of the country. We live On the coast in ns, that's teh east side.. and vancouver on the west.. all our family lives in NS, so we are going to stay here.. If he gets shipped to bc.. i'm not sure what will happen.. but i can't take my kids away from all their family again. we just moved back here from the middle of the country! We have talked to a few peopel in the navy and i think all of them got to choose which coast they went to because they group they where in was split down the middle on who wanted to go to which coast.. 5 ppl picked halifax and the other 5 or 6 picked vancouver. Wish us luck.
1 person likes this
@Tantrums (949)
• Philippines
16 Sep 09
Being in the navy, as others might have said before me, is a great experience and it is very rewarding! For cons, being homesick! I used to be in the British navy, 2 years actually. Then something caught me off guard and I was in the hospital, the accident was awful. Now I have an isolated case of colourblindess.
2 people like this
@sedel1027 (17851)
• United States
16 Sep 09
I don't know how the American Navy is vs the Canadian Navy, but something you definitely consider is how your family will react to your husbands absence for training and if he has to go on a boat somewhere. The American Navy - depending on the job of course - will go on a boat for months at a time which would leave you and your kids alone. Thats not just something that affects your kids and your marriage now, but it will affect how they see their father and how you relate to your husband in the future. I would assume that its not an easy life - keeping up with uniforms, formations, working odd hours, physical conditioning, ect all affect the family life.
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@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
16 Sep 09
yeah.. i expect some rough times, but some good ones too.. we have not been apart for more then a day or two since we met.. 5 or 6 years ago now.. so i think although it will be hard to say goodbye when he leaves, it will make HELLO when he comes back something to look forward to.. Maybe i'm just being optimistic.. that's why i asked. He works a lot of evening and nights now, and we dont see him much as it is.. he has since the kids where born.. they are used to only seeing him short periods of time. . But i think when they come back from being away, they have a sort of vacation time to spend with family.. from what i hear.. so that will be nice for them.. as long as they dont get too used to it just in time for him to leave again.. i am hoping with all my might everything works out and goes smoothly..
@sedel1027 (17851)
• United States
16 Sep 09
I am all for being optimistic, but you have to be realistic too. Like how would your kids handle their dad being gone 1 month, 6 months or a a year on a boat? Yeah, home coming is nice, but I am sure they don't get more than maybe 2 weeks off before having to go to their regular job. Some things that never bothered you before - for example, him not being able to go to a Dr's appointment with a sick child - may start to get to you. Really the best thing you can do, is find someone at the local post/base that has the same or a similar job as your husband is looking at and talk to them. My husband and I have been together over 6 years, been married almost 3. Up until October the most we had been apart was 5 days back in 2005 when he went to visit his Dad in London (his Dad was getting remarried to his step-mom). I can tell you from personal experience that when he was working a lot is way different from him being gone being gone with training for months at a time, working weird hours/not knowing when he will be home, and all the things he misses now that if he was working a civilian job, he would be there for with no problem. We talked about how everything could affect the family, but you never really know how you will react until you are going through the experience. My husband was gone 3 months, home for 10 days, gone for what was supposed to be a month that turned into 3....we are together now, but as soon as he is done this school, unless we can afford to visit, we won't see him for at least another 6 months while he attends another school, then we will move again to be with him but you are still faced with things: he could be placed with a Navy unit that goes on float for 6+ months at a time or he could be deployed for 7 months. That's time he misses with the kids and with me that he feels bad about - which is something neither him or I expected. Its not like either of us are new to this, my sons Dad was in the military when I met him and prior to me meet my husband he was in the military too...so we had a clue of what we were walking into.
1 person likes this
@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
16 Sep 09
Thank you sedel. I understand what your saying.. and i will remain to be optimistic it will work for us all.. his brother in law has the same job that my husband wants.. so he has asked him some questions and the job doesn't demand he go away often or for long.. as far as we've been told anyways.. ugg change into the unknown is hard!
@thea09 (18316)
• Greece
16 Sep 09
Hi Sissy, as you may know Greece is the of the most important sea bearing nations in the world, and many a young Greek boy has sailed away with tears in his heart at the thought of leaving this great land behind. The worries to face of course, you must warn him of the perils of foreign food and always send him off with a good pack of home made victuals. You will need a strong resolve to deal with the unwanted attention of any male callers whilst said hubby is away. Always ensure as well that he realises how dire your finances will be when anyway so the whole of his wages can be deposited directly to yourself. On the plus side you are less likely to get bored with said hubby and he will have interesting tales from around the world to impart on his return. Also be prepared that as soon as he finishes his naval term he will want to buy a fishing boat, so best to start researching the necessary bait required early on, as you find it varies by season. And book a weekend away with a girlfriend when he returns so he can have full care of the children for a few days, then feel guilty when he realises exactly how hard to work to keep his dear family safe for him.
1 person likes this
@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
16 Sep 09
Thanks thea for the words of wisdom!! I dont think i'll have a problem fending off the males.. ones enough for me.. haha ones MORE then enough! :P I will send him with some food, but I'll want him to bring me back some too depending where he goes!! i love to try new foods!
@thea09 (18316)
• Greece
16 Sep 09
Just a bit of frippery with the truth within. Actually one of my best friends had served his time in the Greek navy and he was really proud that he'd been to 97 countries, then when Yugoslavia split into two countries he rounded it up to 98.
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31644)
• United States
17 Sep 09
I hope that it will be a good move for your family. You'll miss him when he's away, though. Hopefully he won't spend too much time at sea but if he hates the job he has now, you'll all be happier if he joins the Navy!
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@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
17 Sep 09
Thanks for the words of encouragement dragon. i sure do hope so! but who will take out the garbage ?? LOL.
@Quiplet (255)
• United States
16 Sep 09
The US Navy has many benefits for families. Canada, I'm sure, will treat military families equally well. Being part of a Navy family can be a lot of fun if you can get past the deployment. Try joining a Navy wife organization too.
@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
16 Sep 09
Thanks for the suggestion! I hope there are some things where i can go meet other moms and my kids will make friends with other kids with dads in the navy too. .
@MikaOkle (43)
16 Sep 09
my father was also in Navy,Oh it was too much pain to allow him to leave in such a limited time but we have to.He took many different things for us whenver come but only short time.We always want to play with him,to share our school events,whats going on neighbour side but it was only dream.He had never enough time. Only we had and have is the money ,quite suffician to live life with luxury.We used to have many parties without any reason ,only to pass time. Bet you, can never cover happiness with money.
@Sissygrl (10914)
• Canada
16 Sep 09
I understand.. but this is the CANADIAN navy.. hehe i dont think that the sailors here are gone always for long periods of times. I do have a friend who is in the navy and although sometimes he is gone for months, he's usually only for a few weeks at a time when he goes.
@hotsummer (10523)
• Philippines
17 Sep 09
being a navy is such a hard life. i don't like that job. though it earns a person a lot of money. we should see navies as heroes too cause they sacrifice also their life for the country. though they earn well.
1 person likes this
@anurag3786 (6273)
• India
17 Sep 09
I think life in navy is very difficult..but they peovide you good salary...but your all time spend on the ship..and you are not allowing to go anywhere...from the ship..So i think there is no life on that service.. but one thing is that it's a very reputed service.. and you will gain all facility...provide by navy..
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@jillhill (37379)
• United States
16 Sep 09
Both my daughters are married to career military men....and the lifestyle has suited them. They have gotten to travel.....and met so many nice people.....the guys also have very good jobs within the military.....so for my girls it's been a very good lifestyle!
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@Hatley (164239)
• Garden Grove, California
16 Sep 09
sissygrl i have heard that a career here in the uS is a good move for'a man asthere are so many different avenues a man can pursue and he can retire with full pay in a shorter time than in many civilian jobs. I dont have any personal knowledge but most of the naval people Ihave met are really happy in the Navy and their families seem to thrive also. I think its a great opportunity myself.
1 person likes this
• Canada
16 Sep 09
I've been with a Navy man (he was in the US Navy although I'm Canadian). Our relationship existed first during the time he was active duty and we weren't married until after his discharge. I can tell you that the one thing I learned is that the only "knowns" are often the unknowns. Things change insanely quick sometimes and without warning. For instance, he was scheduled to be underway for just a few days, for routine exercises, when 9/11 happened. His ship was immediately diverted elsewhere and I had no idea where he was for many weeks (I eventually got a two line email from a senior officer which said only that he was ok and wanted me to be advised). All communication was cut off - no phone calls, emails, instant messages, nothing. Granted that was an intense situation but one can never know when they'll happen. His 6 month deployment in the Med was equally hard. Sometimes they'd have email then it would be taken away without warning. Sometimes they were allowed to use IM programs which, again, would go with no warning. Communication is one of the biggest problems and it can leave you feeling very much alone. Sometimes, he'd be underway and I would know that much but I wasn't allowed to know where he actually was or what he was doing. The only sanity to that would be days that they would pull into port and he'd be able to get in a phone call. Will you be living on base? If so, you should find a lot of support there from the other wives and families. A long-time friend of mine was a Canadian military brat herself, as a child, and she swore she'd never married a military man... but she did. Army, actually. She developed strong friendships with the other base wives and they shared babysitting and such to get by while the husbands were gone. She also ended up having to get a job which she wasn't thrilled about. She thought her husband's pay and benefits would fully support them but it didn't - and she had every intention of being a stay at home mom. She worked part-time as a home visit nurse. I think anything that motivates a person and makes them happy, in terms of their career, is a worthy pursuit. The Navy may well be just what your husband needs, as you've explained. I wish him (and you and the family) much luck! I think you'll just learn and grow along with him because it's definitely a different lifestyle :)
1 person likes this
• Canada
19 Sep 09
My husband was in the Navy, but it was the U.S. Navy, not the Canadian one, so we wouldn't know. I am Canadian, but I don't know a thing about the military, regardless of what branch of the services anyone is going into. My mother dated a guy who was in the Navy, but that was about 40 years ago, so I am sure things have changed since then. LOL