US Air Force. = ]

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stfballplayer7 Posts : 271 Registered: 3/17/08
US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 12:42 PM

FH and I were talking recently and he is seriously thinking about joining the Air Force. We have talked about it, and discussed the pros and cons. We are just waiting to go talk to a recruiter and then see from there.

Is there anyone that is or their better half in the Air Force that could tell me a little more about it?
         

                                  THE FUTURE MRS. B.R. HERB  4/13/09

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CaribbeanBride08 Posts : 1,474 Registered: 6/13/07
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 1:13 PM Go to message in response to: stfballplayer7

I can't answer the Air Force question but I'm curious to know how things turned out with that guy friend of yours that you posted about a while back.

 

 

Tobi & Brian - April 21, 2008

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stfballplayer7 Posts : 271 Registered: 3/17/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 1:29 PM Go to message in response to: CaribbeanBride08

He's been working a lot... haven't really talked to him.. Text messages every now and again... I made a Neww Years Resolution and that was to be a better person, and I think not entertaining my other feelings, for him falls under that. Which probably would be another plus to the Air Force, I wouldn't be near him and therefore wouldn't act on those feelings. Time will tell I guess.
         

                                  THE FUTURE MRS. B.R. HERB  4/13/09

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NJ4Life Posts : 3,358 Registered: 8/10/07
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 1:43 PM Go to message in response to: stfballplayer7

Wait I thought you said FH is joining the AF? How is him being away going to help with the other guy? Maybe I missed something.

I dont know too much about the AF. of course the war is a downside, however he will get a free education and it wil help him with job training which is always a plus. It will probably better his life.

New Jersey: We have dumps, bays and cement boots and we know how to use 'em

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kelleyiskelley Posts : 11,590 Registered: 7/2/06
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 3:04 PM Go to message in response to: stfballplayer7

Hey SF. My husband was in the AirForce for a long time. He is at work all day and night today but Ill let him know youre looking for some advice and to come in here and post. Anything in particular you or your Fh want to know about it?

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myra Posts : 5,550 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 4:06 PM Go to message in response to: kelleyiskelley

My DH was in the Air Force as a physician (during Viet Nam). He didnt go abroad, spent his time at Wright Patterson AFB in Ohio. He didn't love military life, but made some good friends and got to travel practically for free. Sure, the military can be great--if you're not fighting. Bad points: Like any branch of the military, when you're in, they own you. I know many people who have been promised a certain position or training, only to have something else happen when they're actually in. I even know a physician who stayed in the Reserves and was called up (in his 60's!!) to replace a physician who was sent to Iraq. He had to leave private practice, wife and family in California, and spend 6 months in Alabama! Good points: medical coverage (my cousin had her babies for free); help with a housing loan; education; good training for a future career; looks great on a resume. You both have to consider a possible separation, if you can't go with him, vs. possible interesting travel opportunities (like my good friends' two years in Japan). Talk to as many people who've been there as you can, and don't believe everything that any recruiter says.
myra at www.classysassyweddings.com

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stfballplayer7 Posts : 271 Registered: 3/17/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 4:19 PM Go to message in response to: NJ4Life

NJ, I didn't mean that FH and I would be separated. I meant that my friend and I would be. We are getting married in April and he isn't planning on joining until after.
         

                                  THE FUTURE MRS. B.R. HERB  4/13/09

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 4:26 PM Go to message in response to: stfballplayer7

I'm also glad to hear that you're phasing that other guy out. I was also wondering how that turned out. But I'm also confused as to how your FH joining the Air Force will make this situation with the other guy any easier. Or are you joining, too?

Like any service, the downside for a couple is separation and deployment. Be honest with yourselves about how you think you'd handle that. Have you ever been separated by a long distance for a lengthy period of time? How did that go? If you haven't done the long distance thing, how do you (realistically) think that you'd each deal with it? If you'd miss him, but you'd value your independence when he's away, it would probably work out Ok. If you'd miss him to the point that you wouldn't be able to function - or that you'd turn to another for comfort - any career path that separates you two will be bad for your relationship.

I'm going to be honest, and you probably won't like it. Hate me all you want for bringing it up, but you were on here about a month ago telling us about your feelings for another guy and seriously considering ending this relationship to pursue something with him. My gut reaction is that you're not ready for the challenges of a long-distance relationship. Even if you move far away from this guy, you'll meet someone else and face the same challenges...but your FH might be on the other side of the world, so you're lonely and you slip up. When the one you love is close by, it's easy to pass on temptation...but when he's far away and you haven't seen his face in months, it's going to be harder. Honey, I'm giving you my honest opinion, as a woman who has been through years of long distance, I don't think you have what it takes to do that right now. I'm not saying that you shouldn't get married - heck, it's not a crime to have a little crush once in a while! I'm just saying that your recent experience has shown you how hard it can be to stay faithful and committed when your FH is around...just imagine how much harder it would be if he didn't come home to you every night. If I had had such a recent brush with potential infidelity, I wouldn't want to risk my relationship by putting myself in such a risky position.

As far as the Air Force itself goes, what type of job is he interested in? Is he interested in being a 'career man' or just doing it for a few years? In either case, I think you should both be involved in making the decision. True, it's his career, but military families need to make more sacrifices than others. To get an idea of what you should expect, I might look for a military wives forum and do some lurking. But as far as the Air Force itself goes, it has its pros and cons like any other career. Depending on what he wants to do in the Air Force - and his longterm career goals - it might be a great experience.

DaisypathWedding Ticker

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stfballplayer7 Posts : 271 Registered: 3/17/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 4:27 PM Go to message in response to: kelleyiskelley

Thanks Kelley. I think it's mainly me.. I know nothing really about the Air Force. We will be married by the time, if he does decide to go, and I know that Basic is 8 weeks long... and whatever is on their website. That's about it.
I know we have talked about it and we decided if we do go with it we will live on base. He wants to go for mechanics still debating on which part though, right now he is a car mechanic but is getting bored with that real fast. He is also considering the welding part, he enjoyed that in school. His father did some kind of body work/welding back when he was in it before FH was born. But his dad told him a little about it and we are going to have a sit down with him soon, I hope. I also told him that we should schedule a meeting with a recruiter, I know that they say anything to get you to join, but it will also, HOPEFULLY, give us an idea of what to expect.
So in all actaulity, any info would be good.. for him or me.
         

                                  THE FUTURE MRS. B.R. HERB  4/13/09

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stfballplayer7 Posts : 271 Registered: 3/17/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 4:33 PM Go to message in response to: myra

Myra, That ws one of our biggest part in the decision making process.. We both want to travel and with the Air Force, as I was reading on the webite.. we can travel for cheap. = ] As you said the whole Japan thing, I have a good friend and he is stationed in Japan right now. He loves it there.
Last night we got into a HUGE discussion about it, by huge I mean we weretalking about it until like 4AM. lol. (We couldn't sleep) But what I was getting at, we made a list of Pros and Cons.. The list we made the Pros deff outweighed the Cons. But I would still like him to talk to someone that has been there. Perferrably not a recruiter, as you said, you can never trust them... THey have to meet a quota or something so they will say anything...
         

                                  THE FUTURE MRS. B.R. HERB  4/13/09

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stfballplayer7 Posts : 271 Registered: 3/17/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 4:52 PM Go to message in response to: ArtBride

Art,
I totally see where you are coming from, so I won't hold it against you.. lol. I don't think that it will happen again with anyone else. The thing is, me and my friend have been really close for years and idk what happened nor where my head was. Since then I have deff not made as close of guy friends. I have some that are a casual, Hi how are you kinda thing, but I have made a promise to myself to never let myself get in that situation again. Making more gal friends, not talking to other guys NEARLY as much, etc.
FH and I have been away for a long period of time (long to me anyway) of like 3 months give or take. It was hard but during that time I spent with family and the few close gal friends I had. After the first couple weeks it wasn't as bad as at first. I got involved in more activities, and also pick back up some hobbies I haven't even thought about since high school. It was deff a growing period for me.
FH is interested in a mechanical or welding field in the Air Force. And we have discussed how long he would want to stay in it. He thinks he would want to be what you call the 'career man' bc as FH said if I like what I'm doing 20yrs easy. It is a stable job, and in the Air Force there is pretty much a Zero chance of being laid off, and where he is now and with the economy we are not garanteed that, the company has been close before who's to say it won't go down the drain now.? Mainly, he wants a job where he can support us and our future children and not worry about the 'what if I get laiad off' situation. Like I said before his dad was in it and has nothing but good things to say about it that he has told me, but we will go more min depth with him when we can have a sit down and talk about EVERYTHING. What I really want is to hopefully find someone around here that is still in or recently out of the Air Force to talk to FH. I know his dad will but it has been 20+yrs since his dad was in the Air Force and I know a lot has changed since then technology and all...
         

                                  THE FUTURE MRS. B.R. HERB  4/13/09

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CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 7:56 PM Go to message in response to: stfballplayer7

I'm not in a relationship with an AF guy, but I am an Air Force B.R.A.T. (Born, Raised and Trained). So I'm going to give you the low down of life as a military dependant.

Unless your guy has a college degree, he's going enlisted. You mentioned Basic Training, and that translates to Airman.

We moved A LOT when I was growing up. By the time I graduated from High School, I had been in 12 different schools. When we didn't move, they rezoned. I was born in Indiana, because my mom was way too pregnant to fly when my dad was stationed in Hawaii--so he was not there (they didn't let him fly home to be with Mom when she gave birth.... he met me for the first time when I was about 2 months old).

Military schools are very good -- and there is a high expectation of behavior. The military member can be held to account when his/her spouse/child acts up. I know people who lost rank because of a child's behavior (truly drastic....like getting drunk and driving on base, but still).

I do not have a close relationship with any of my family, save my parents--because they were random relations. I might see them at Christmas, every other year, or for a week during the summer. My friendships are short term...because when you move every three years, it's really hard to form lasting friendships.

Medical is paid for....yes, but that does not mean it is good. I was legally blind, and that managed to not be diagnosed by a military eye doctor. Only a follow up demanded by the school with an off base eye doctor revealed my ambliopia (lazy eye syndrome) and we were fortunate in who we saw -- because the guy I saw was actually developing a new treatment for it. I was a 'guinea pig' so to speak, which made the treatment affordable (it would not have been covered by Champus)....and I wear glasses today, but I am NOT legally blind, thanks to that doctor. I've been yelled at by dentists..... because my mouth is too small (seriously).

Yes, you have an option for housing on base -- but truthfully, at the rank of A-1 through 3 (which he will be when he gets out of basic, depending on how well he does), the houses are not great.

There are times when he will be stationed TDY, and you will not be able to go with him -- and that does not mean you'll be allowed to stay at the current station, depending on the duration of the assignment. 3 months, yes.... two years, nopers.... Or he might be assigned to a location where he cannot bring the family until he has acquired housing -- and again, you can't remain at the previous assignment. So.... it's home to mom and dad you go, because at that rank, you can't afford to maintain two households. (we had that happen twice, once I remember, once I was too young)

For a career.... it is great.

And there were opportunities I would never have had outside the Air Force -- like spring break field trip Junior Year to Paris, because we lived in England at the time. Had we not been military, that trip would have been out of range.

The base has a lot of great things: medical, with free prescriptions -- but be wary, it's not perfect; tax free stores, a fairly good education system, a true feeling of security in your insular community. But it IS hard on families. Spouses have a hard time having careers, because you have to move when the assignment is over and he's sent to a new place....it's harder for you to progress in your chosen area, and almost impossible for you to save a pension of your own.

Don't just look at the pros and cons for HIM.... look at the ones for YOU and for your family as a whole. Depending on where your stationed, you may not be able to get home for holidays, or may only be able to get home for one of them (we would spend Christmas every other year with a different family.... holidays were always major road trips--unless we were stationed somewhere like Hawaii or England, where we could not drive to the relations). Your children will have access to a fine education, but it will vary from area to area, which could be problematic (in Texas, for example, multiplication was taught in the 4th grade when I was growing up....and in Hawaii....it was 3rd grade. I moved to Hawaii from Texas, to start the 4th grade, so I started behind in Math).

Bottom line: would I marry a military man? No....I've done my time in the military.... I 'served' unrecognized for 18 years--supporting my dad by not getting in the way of his career or complaining about moving, despite the number of times I cried when my friends were transferred away from me, or I was transferred away from them. And my reward: I can never return to the places I grew up. (I went to Hawaii last year on vacation.... a place where my dad was stationed, and the first time I visited any place I called home as a child. Yet I couldn't drive by my house, or visit my school, or my church. They were on base. I was exiled from them.)

Misty

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MisterKelley Posts : 258 Registered: 7/11/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 9:28 PM Go to message in response to: stfballplayer7

I was active duty Air Force for 4 years and I served another 2 years in the reserves. I served during Desert Shield/Storm. Whenever anyone asks me how I liked it, I always sum it up by saying that I loved the job but hated the company. I was an F-16 Crew Chief - basically, I maintained the airplanes on the flightline. I've always loved airplanes so I really enjoyed that aspect of my military career. That being said there's always Caveats. The first thing that will happen is your FH will have to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery a.k.a the ASVAB test. This is usually a day long ordeal that involves testing in 6 or so different areas. One section is devoted to Administrative skills (I hated that one ), another section deals with how mechanically inclined you are, another deals with how well you can problem solve. You are scored in every individual section and how well you do in those sections along with your own ideas about what you think you would excell in, helps you and your ecruiter determine what Air Force Specialty fits you best. You can go to Barnes and Nobles or Amazon and find ASVAB Prep Books. I suggest buying one so he gets an idea of what the real deal is like.Now let's say he scores high in mechanics and says well I think I'd really like to work on airplanes. Now pay attention because here's where you and your FH need to understand that what happens down the road is going to be determined by 3 words - those words are IF YOU QUALIFY. Your recruiter may very well be able to guarantee that your FH gets a seat in Aircraft Maintenence School but It's up to FH to make sure he passes the courses required or else he may very well be placed in whatever specialty the Air Forces needs at the time. In short, the Air Force will make an honest attempt to put you were you feel you want to go but it's up to you to ensure that you Qualify for that position by passing the class required. Continued below.


MisterKelley - Now specializing in Trainwrecks and Jackassery

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kennysoldwife Posts : 3,859 Registered: 4/28/07
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 9:43 PM Go to message in response to: CatStandish

I am the daughter of a Marine and an Air Force vet. All that Catstandish said is true. As an Airman. I had short assignments so if I had family they would not have been able to go with me. Basic training is 8 weeks but then depending on the job he has the school for that could be a few weeks or months and you will not be able to go with him for all that time. I had Basic Training 8 weeks, Life Support Training for 16 weeks, and then Survival Training for another 6 weeks. In all that time I wasn't able to go home. That is a long time to be separated from someone as a newlywed.

The other thing to think about is the military fills the positions they need. So no matter what job your FH was promised when he went in if another job needs to be filled he may get that. Also the Military staffs where they need people so you could request to live somewhere nice like Hawaii and end up somewhere like Minot, SD or Abilene, Tx. As was stated before if it is a short tour and you accompany your spouse you will have to pay for off base housing and depending on where you live that can be rather expensive especially if you can not find work and sometimes it is difficult for spouses to find employment.

Just some of the downside to Air Force life.

Kenny and Me Perfect Together,  10 years and counting.

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MisterKelley Posts : 258 Registered: 7/11/08
Re: US Air Force. = ]
Posted: Jan 21, 2009 9:54 PM Go to message in response to: MisterKelley

Ok, so now FH has taken the ASVAB, and he's discussed the results with his recruiter. Seems like he scored well enough to qualify for a seat in the Aircraft Maintenence classes at Tech School in Whicita Falls, Texas. He now gets to pick which aircraft he would prefer - maybe he loves Fighter jets ( I sure did) and he wants to work on those - great. Maybe he wants to work on B-52 Bombers - fine, he can specialize in that too. Maybe he would like to fly around in the planes he maintains and smack the pilots around a little bit so he chooses cargo aircraft. My best friend,who is now a master sargeant does exactly that and he's a flight engineer on C-130 Cargo planes. Whatever he specialty he settles on, it's all contingent upon - IF YOU QUALIFY. This next part is important too - whatever specialty your FH decides to persue, GET IT IN WRITTING!!!! I cannot express this strongly enough. I don't care if your recruiter swears on the grave of his grandmother that you'll get a seat in the training course of your choice, if it's not in writting on the contract he signs, it's not guaranteed. Don't get screwed!! also, when I went in almost 20 years ago, I had a lot of college courses completed so I was able to sew on E-3 (Airman First Class) stripes right after I finished basic. in other words - you can get promoted up to E-3 depending on how much college experience you have. If your FH has some college, ask the recruiter if this applies to him and if it does - GET IT IN WRITTING. I think you get where I'm going with this by now. Sorry if this is long and drawn out but this is the most important decision your FH has ever made so you can't go into it blind and stupid.

MisterKelley - Now specializing in Trainwrecks and Jackassery

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