(Closed) Fiance has been thinking about joining the Coast Guard…

posted 8 years ago in Military
Post # 3
14186 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

Well, you won’t know anything until you go through it–i mean there is no ‘up front knowledge’. you sign up and then find out details LATER. It’s sucky.

Yes, it is VERY likely you will have to move somewhere far away. Your Fiance may not have much of a choice in where he goes. For us, we picked 10 places he’d be willing to take on as a permanent station (4 years) and the Army picked one off that last. I ended up staying behind in Missouri while he got stationed in Georgia.

Yes he could be deployed for as long as 12 months. I think they stopped the 15 month deployment nonsense we had to go through. There is never any guarantee he can’t be deployed. When it happens, it changes your relationship. In my case, for the better.

Boot camp is like 8 weeks long I think. He probably won’t get to talk to you very much, if at all. When Darling Husband did officer camp (very different) he got one phone call while he was there. One.

Does your Fiance have a college degree? If so, I HIGHLY encourage him to go the officer route. The pay is a lot better. And from what I hear, generally more respected. He’s less likely to be treated poorly. I think this becomes moot if you’ve been enlisted for awhile, though–you’ve earned yourself by then. But in the beginning…ugh, it can suck.

Why the military? Why the coast guard? Are the fitness standards feasible for him to achieve?

Your life will be very unpredictable. Do you have a career? Most military wives have a hard time holding onto one b/c they end up following thier husbands. It takes a long time to get to the point where your life int he military is predictable. These people usually have a lot of time invested. For us, we’d have new stations every 4 years if we chose to stay, sometimes 2. I didn’t want to move around that much. Something like what I do for a living is not easily transferrable but most of my friends have gone into nursing or teaching so they can move around more easily. And a lot of them simply do not work. Military men can work very long hours depending on whre they are.  Is your Fiance someone who takes instruction well? no matter who it is from? My husband found this very frustrating–having to listen to your superiors just b/c they were your superiors. Even tho they were complete idiots. But b/c of the heirarchy, you have no way to deal.

Go see a recruitor together to get all the basic questions answered. Then meet some people and see what their lives are like. Some people love it, some hate it. It wasn’t a lifestyle we coudl get on board with forever though.

Post # 5
4123 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

My dad was a Coastie and I have a very warm spot in my heart for them! 

Is he wanting to join as an officer or reserves etc… A lot depends on what he joins as… Odds are, yes, you will not stay in NY… unless reserves. The good news, the Coast Guard could mean Key West, or someplace warm! Or, it could also mean Alaska… but everyone I know whose gone to alaska never leaves! The odds of AK are slim though…. You’re def. going to get water though ๐Ÿ™‚

I would say, of all the services, great choice! The life of a Coastie is much easier in these war times than Army/Marines… and even Navy/air force.  I second seeing a recruiter together… they can help you out the most.

Depending on what he joins as, he may have more of a say in where he goes for a specific job function etc.  I loved my dad’s CG days… we got “coast guard stories” before bed ๐Ÿ™‚ When we were kids they revolved around Academy days, bears, and huskies… Now I hear the better ones of chasing drug lords and steak outs ๐Ÿ™‚ My dad loved it!

Post # 6
4123 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Oh, as far as “deployments” it depends on his job function. In the start, he may go on “floats” more often as I think all coasties have to spend time onboard…. if he’s going to get a more “think tank” kind of job…. i.e. accountant, PR, legal, etc…. he won’t be deployed like that. The 2nd factor is your station. If you’re stationed in NY, his floats would probably be on the hudson in anti-terrorism. i.e. he should come home at the end of his shift. In Key West he would probably be more focused on drug runners and immigration.  He’d go out of floats for weeks at a time. But again, that’s all depending on his job… I don’t think many actually go on 6+ Month deployments like all the other branches… but it is possible… and while rare, Coasties have died in action… but again, it’s rare in the USCG.

Post # 7
96 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Like other bees have shared, being in the coast guard is very different from other branches of service. So far, as an officer, my Fiance has had a boring desk job (his degree is in engineering)in Washington DC and now he has started aviation training (his lifelong dream!). During his service in the coast guard so far, he has not ever had to even take a step onto a ship. However, we know plenty of other coasties who have been serving 6 months at a time on a cutter (ship). It really does depend on the job.

Another thing to keep in mind, the Coast Guard is a much smaller branch than the others. It does have a reputation for being more family friendly and willing to work with a member’s situation…but at the same time, it is still the military.

Good luck with your decisions!

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