Perspectives from real reservists/families? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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bburgi
11-08-2006, 16:09
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Jeff82
11-09-2006, 01:32
PM sent.

bburgi
11-15-2006, 22:25
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Sam White
11-16-2006, 15:07
:thumbsup: Your wife could potentially make or break your career in the Army. It's a good thing that she said that to you without any prompting.

cgrivois
11-21-2006, 09:53
Not sure how much progress youíve made in your decision making process about the reserves, but yes, the reserves does have chaplains assistants. In fact, I know of several of them in my unit back at Ft. Jackson. Several of them have deployed to Iraq with us. One of our main missions state side is too train the chaplains on basic soldiering skills while they are in chaplain school. Not too say this is your rationality of thinking, but if you think for a second by joining the Reserves you will not be deployed, think again. Make sure your wife understands that. Iíve experienced deployments as an active duty soldier, and now as a reservist, and it seems to be harder on the reserve soldiers and their families. Especially those families that have had no active duty experience. Good luck.

Jeff82
11-21-2006, 11:23
Originally posted by cgrivois
Not sure how much progress youíve made in your decision making process about the reserves, but yes, the reserves does have chaplains assistants. In fact, I know of several of them in my unit back at Ft. Jackson. Several of them have deployed to Iraq with us. One of our main missions state side is too train the chaplains on basic soldiering skills while they are in chaplain school. Not too say this is your rationality of thinking, but if you think for a second by joining the Reserves you will not be deployed, think again. Make sure your wife understands that. Iíve experienced deployments as an active duty soldier, and now as a reservist, and it seems to be harder on the reserve soldiers and their families. Especially those families that have had no active duty experience. Good luck.
+1 :thumbsup:

md2lgyk
11-22-2006, 11:10
Are you set on the Army Reserve in particular? Depending on what you want to do, there are other options. I did 8 active in the Navy and 16 in the Air National Guard (just retired). Air Force training is better and the deployments shorter. When I retired last May, my unit's deployments were running 60 days; now I think they're 120.

Postal Patron
11-23-2006, 12:05
I'm a Reservist and have been mobilized three times involuntarily. The last time I had one day notice to get my stuff ready to go to mob site to be an individual replacement. Since I was cross leveled, my local unit dropped all support including family support and the unit across the country had to support me. My wife had basic needs such as babysitting, location of laundry, id card, vehicle stickers and I wanted help for my wife and the local unit refused, since transferred out (although I had to be reassigned back to them when I returned). I brought this issue up with my Senators, and they deferred to the Army , whose commanders said that they could have called me up with zero day notice. Up to the local commander if they want to support.

When my group came back to Ft Hood, the CG said he wanted all Reservists out within five days. Our gear hadn't arrived yet, so we turned in what we could and were ordered to pay in cash for gear we did not turn in. Many did, I was in a group which refused, and it was eventually written off. We were due "return from active duty" REFRAD physicals and they refused saying the VA would do it. I took this up with Sen Cornyn and his office inquired and Ft Hood lied and said no one is refused a physical here upon demob.

This doesn't include carp that goes on overseas.

Not a good time to be in, especially if you are new.

Postal Patron
11-23-2006, 12:10
My brother in law has been under heavy solicitation to become a chaplain since he is a pastor, but was repulsed because of the official word not to preach Jesus. Also, you have to be accomodating to other faiths, who need wood for ceremony, and other weird beliefs. I was in a conversation with a chaplain in Afghanistan and he had to accomodate some of the earthen beliefs of soldiers. We had no chaplain but occasionaly a female chaplain would fly to our FOB to have a service.

You would not believe the diversity of beliefs.

Postal Patron
11-23-2006, 12:12
In toher words,

NO! NO! NO!

RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!

cgrivois
11-23-2006, 12:30
Dont let the experience of one individual, or in this case unit be your basis for a dicision. Sounds like PP deployed as a "filler" which I can see how a soldier like this could fall through the cracks. We had several individuals that were mobbed like this, however our unit still took care of them. I was lucky enough to deploy as a unit, that replaced a unit. PP sounds like you definately had a bad experience, hope it all works out for you. I would be looking for new unit, which is another bennifit if the Reserves.

cgrivois
11-23-2006, 12:40
Oh yeah, not sure about the not preaching Jesus info you got there. We have a chaplain that comes by the motor pool every Thursday before we roll out for mission, and he sure preaches Jesus. I think chaplains have a main denomination that they stick with, but are taught enough about most other beliefs to have an intellectual conversation with some one of another faith that may just want to talk with a chaplain. Again, Iím just a grunt so you may want to get some info from a more reliable source. If you want, I can talk with the chaplain over here and see if he would mind exchanging info directly with you via email. If you would like email me at craig.grivois@us.army.mil

Postal Patron
11-23-2006, 18:46
The preaching part has been policy for quite a while. Chaplains are social workers *not* preachers, thus prohibited from steering anyone toward a particular faith. Your chaplain friend is sticking his neck out and since they are short in the sand, probably over look it. But it *is* policy.

cgrivois
11-23-2006, 23:33
Im definatly no authority on the subject but I did stay at a Holliday Inn last night, oh wait a minuite, no I didnt. Oh well. Good luck.

bburgi
11-25-2006, 00:43
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Postal Patron
11-25-2006, 10:24
Be prepared - I tried to warn you. If you think you are getting into a Christian ministry - forget it. You are a social worker for the Army. Yes, you are desperately needed and a Christian is of importance, but you will fight against the system your entire career and it will get worse. Don't say I didn't warn you.

cgrivois
11-25-2006, 11:29
PP are you with the 104th?

Postal Patron
11-25-2006, 14:15
No.

Flinter
11-28-2006, 17:00
bburgi, While I am a guardsman, so my experience will be slightly different than a reservist, I can say that I have found my 7 years of part time service to be mostly rewarding. The military is definitely a love hate relationship, and will many times be frustrating. And even moreso for you wife. Contact me through PM if you have any questions, and I will give you good straight answers.

16vmkII
01-30-2007, 21:35
I'm an Army Reservist and Chaplain Assistant. I got back about 4 months ago from a year in Iraq. I've been on active duty for the past 4 years, due to the Army being short on 56M's. If you have any Q's send em and I'll answer them. Understand that if you enlist as a 56M, you WILL be deployed and then you'll be deployed again and then you'll be deployed again - good luck.:thumbsup:

16vmkII
01-30-2007, 21:43
Also understand that you will face all sorts of hurdles as an Active Duty Reservist (You'll become one in short time ;) ) such as finance, promotion, NCOER's, etc. due to the fact that the Reserve side of the house won't support you because you're "active duty" and the Active Component side of the house won't support you because you're a "reservist".

Oh and the Reservist who had issue's with getting physicals, etc. I believe it. I was diagnosed with the PTSD and seriously aggravated an old back injury in an IED explosion and all I get from Tri-Care is the runaround. A bunch of crap and it's not worth it in the end...good luck dude - throw your life away :thumbsup:

bburgi
02-15-2007, 16:44
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jwalk2515
02-16-2007, 08:11
its all doable, a supportive wife is the key. Just Remember she may not always be so supportive and you still have to be. When you enlist, she is enlisting by proxy. I am a former jarhead (8 years) and current national guardsman (2 1/2 yrs) just returning from 17 months of deployment. It was hard on my family and I took many *** chewings because I had the "easy" part as far as she was concerned. She had the real world and all of its problems to deal with, kids, school, house etc. while I was off playing with the boys.


experiences can be directly related to the attitude of the beholder in a lot of cases. Love it, hate it, or tolerate it.

bburgi
03-09-2007, 20:58
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Bren
03-10-2007, 07:11
I recently enlisted in the Army Reserve after being out of the regular Army for over 20 years. It has been quite an experience so far - Monday I went to MEPS for the last time, picked a job and swore in - Friday I was on my way to drill with my unit on a regular Army post, wearing my one uniform of scrounged, bought and borrowed parts - found my old dog tags from the 1980's (and luckily, I live about 1/2 mile from a National Guard center with a mini-PX/clothing sales and ID card facility). Saturday (my birthday) I was doing bayonet training, obstancle course and confidence course (we are a drill sergeant/IET training unit, so we will apparently be repeating basic training type stuff in "how to teach" mode at each drill).

If you are not prior service, you probably won't get such a shock, and you will just kind of hang around until they send you to basic/AIT.

The most surprising thing to me was the high quality of the soldiers in my unit. I admit I expected less from the reserves and it may be just because this is a unit full of drill sergeants, but I wish I had served with soldiers this good (my initial judgment based on 3-4 days with them) on active duty - heck, I wish my old artillery battery at the allegedly great 82d Airborn Div. had even a few NCO's of this quality - knowledgeable, looking out for the soldiers, etc. They're not just "by the book" - they can repeat the book to you from memory. I'm pretty happy so far, having been in the reserves almost 2 weeks.

As far as work and stuff - I haven't told anybody but my wife I enlisted. I'll get around to mentioning it to my employer after my promotion probation is finished and my new promotion is permanent. Until then, I'll take comp time for reserve stuff. Since my family and friends all work in related government jobs, I'll mention it to them about the same time.

Good luck bburgi.

bburgi
03-13-2007, 12:40
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Jeff82
03-13-2007, 22:05
Originally posted by bburgi
Here's the update to my Army journey thus far...

I finished up the ASVAB last week with an awesome score, I passed the physical at MEPS (I was concerned about a few things a first, but they passed me straight through with no waivers), and I was all set to sign a contact last night and start my military career...

The problem came when I found out that many of the things my recruiter and Station Commander told me were not true - I know everyone says "get it in writing or don't expect it", but it really threw me for a loop when what was promised up front was not available. Specifically, the Station Commander told me he had put a reservation on a 56M reserve position with $X amount of bonus attached, but when I went to DEP in none of that was true- the reservation was not there, and the bonus was a fraction of what was promised. They tried to council me to pick another MOS, but my wife and I felt really uncomfortable - almost like a bait and switch was being pulled on us. It wasn't even the bonus we were concerned about; it was the feeling of deception and pressure to sign.

I want to be a soldier. I want to serve my country. I am driven, and we are still planning on following through with this. But the fact was, while we were at MEPS with the pressure and stress of the situation, we couldn't make an honest informed decision and we just had to walk away and regroup. My wife in particular felt very ill-at-ease with the whole situation, and we had decided from day one that joining the Army would have to be a mutual decision for our family.

Right now we are researching other MOS options, but this time I will be going to the recruiting station in person to put a reservation on a job I want.

I guess I'm just disappointed, because I was so excited about joining last night. As it turns out, at this point I may not join until July. I suppose in the end a few months won't make a big difference in the course of my career though.

Bravo!!! Way to stick to your guns and not knuckle under!! keep that up and you'll do fine.

The ONLY bargaining power you have is before you sign that paper!! After that it's all what the army wants. If they want you bad enough they'll make it happen (within reason). When I was getting close to ETS in '99 (ending my term) I told the reup guy I would only reenlist if I got a particular station of assignment "guaranteed." He said, "ok, great, sign here and I'll get it." I said, "no way jose, put it on paper first or no deal!" He came back and said it wsn't available. I said, "I'll see ya later, as a civilian." Weeks went by with him always asking and claiming he'd call in favors etc. I always maintained "no guarantee, no reup."

Just a day or two before my reup window closed he finally came through. I don't care what he had to do to get it but he did because I stuck to my guns. Was I prepared in case he didn't? Yep. But my plan to reup one last time (before hitting the "indef" bs) to get where I wanted to ETS worked. I spent 3 years teaching in the aircraft armament schoolhouse and then got out in '02. Still live in the area. Had it not worked I'd simply ETS'd from Germany to my home of record and "driven on."

bburgi
03-31-2007, 20:10
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Jeff82
03-31-2007, 23:53
Originally posted by bburgi
Here's the latest update on my military journey:

I have been thinking about this a lot since my trip to MEPS, and I've decided to switch my enlistment to the National Guard for several reasons - the Guard has all of the same benefits as the Reserves including training, pay, rank, bonuses, etc - but the Guard also offers combat MOS's, the option to deploy to natural disasters (I've already been involved with some SAR on my own, so that part is appealing), and the pride of not only representing the US, but my home state as well. I'm looking at signing this week as 13F Fire Support Specialist). Big change from the 56M, but I'm excited about being in charge of all that firepower!

I'd still be interested in being a Chaplain's Assistant, but I had two thoughts that changed my mind: 1) I already work in the ministry, so I'd like get something different out of my experience in the Army. A combat MOS is completely different than anything I do now. 2) If I'm joining the Army anyway, I might as well pick an MOS with a big bonus attached. That way I can help out my family a little more in the process.

Once again, I appreciate everyone's input. This has been a long journey with a lot of back-and-fourth, changing my mind, and overcoming obstacles, but I've finally figured out what's best for me and my family, and I'm EXCITED about joining! I'll let you know what happens with the contract, but I expect to sign by Thursday.

-Brian

Careful what you ask for! I don't want to scare you but... All the arty guys (alot of 'em are activatd NG) I know in Iraq are doing the 11B (grunt) thing. Entire units. Mounted and dismounted patrolling and advising and other infantry tasks. Convoy security, etc. Not much call for IDF support. There is a little bit as in 'lum missions and such. Again, you're a warm body and there's not enough 11Bulletstoppers. Today's missions are all about coinops. High intensity conflict (arty's fav) is not "the way" these days.

Just so you know...

Bren
04-02-2007, 06:00
Originally posted by Jeff82
Careful what you ask for! I don't want to scare you but... All the arty guys (alot of 'em are activatd NG) I know in Iraq are doing the 11B (grunt) thing.
That's the normal job for a 13F to begin with. Most 13F's stay with the Infantry.

Jeff82
04-02-2007, 08:27
Originally posted by Bren
That's the normal job for a 13F to begin with. Most 13F's stay with the Infantry.
I understand that. What I'm getting at is he may end up doing more 11B grunt work than using plotting boards or even AFATDS.

Hal9mm
04-05-2007, 14:38
in this day and age I would go active or nothing, being a reservist is very very hard on the family. You are going to get deployed you might as well be active duty from the start.

bburgi
04-09-2007, 11:02
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Jeff82
04-09-2007, 11:47
Originally posted by bburgi
Done did... signed & swore-in today

6yrs Texas Army National Guard, 13F (Fire Support Specialist), 133rd FA

Start drills in two weeks, and head to OSUT in August at Ft. Sill, OK

Wish me luck!
Well good luck and Godspeed in any travels. I hope this works well for you and your family.

You may end up spending time in the same battalion I was in when I went to 13M school. 2nd/80th FA had all the 13M (Bravo Battery), 13F, USMC Co., etc.

Don't know if they are still there or reflagged or what. I was there in '93. Things change.

Bren
04-09-2007, 19:56
Originally posted by bburgi
Done did... signed & swore-in today

6yrs Texas Army National Guard, 13F (Fire Support Specialist), 133rd FA

Start drills in two weeks, and head to OSUT in August at Ft. Sill, OK

Wish me luck!
Good luck. I was a 13B in regular Army and always wished I had been 13F.

Oddly enough, now that I am in the reserve, where we don't have combat arms MOS's or units, I'm still a 13B assigned to a cavalry squadron (actually cavalry in name only, but I'm "MOS Immaterial" in a basic training/drill sergeant unit so my only MOS is still 13B).

NDGlock
04-10-2007, 10:29
Originally posted by bburgi
Done did... signed & swore-in today

6yrs Texas Army National Guard, 13F (Fire Support Specialist), 133rd FA

Start drills in two weeks, and head to OSUT in August at Ft. Sill, OK

Wish me luck!

Outstanding - I think you made the right choice in going Guard over Reserve...Best of Luck.