Having a loved one join the Marines is a lifechanging decision for your family.
Your future Marine will be working hard to get physically, spiritually, and mentally ready. You'll want to get mentally and spiritually ready as well.
Preparing Your Family
Someone you love and care about is joining the Marines. Whether this is your husband, daughter, brother, or boyfriend, you'll want to make sure you are ready for the path ahead.
Things to consider include:
Communications at Basic Training
While your recruit or candidate is in basic training (Boot Camp or Officer Candidate School), there will be minimal contact. Recruits communicate only by handwritten letters while candidates only make phone calls on weekends. In a world where we've all gotten used to texts, emails, and phone calls, this is a big shift.
This is usually harder for you than it is for the recruit or candidate. They are homesick, but so busy most of the time they don't get to think about it. Since everyone they're with is also feeling the same way, they help each other out. You will miss them during all the regular activities they are no longer there for - phone calls, texts, dinners, etc. This is also the hardest part for many people because it's the first time their person is away from them. You can drive yourself crazy without a plan!
Start by understanding what your Recruit or Candidate is going through. If they are going through Boot Camp or OCS, learn what the key training events are and challenges they'll face. Sign them up for one of our Prep plans, or get one for yourself so you can track what they are doing each day.
Make a realistic plan to communicate. They will be under a ton of stress while in basic training and are usually very homesick. Writing short, encouraging letters to your recruit or candidate everyday is a huge morale boost!
If you want to make sure you get a response, try including a smaller pre-addressed and stamped return envelope with a piece of paper inside each of your own letters. By making it easier for them to respond (and saving a few minutes), you give them more time to write you back and tell you how things are going.
No Bad News. This can be tough, because life happens. Try to handle as much of the unpleasantries before your recruit or candidate ships to training. While in training, avoid including any bad news in your letters. A bid of bad news coming at the wrong time in training can completely knock your person off track.
Helping Them Prepare
How can you help your future Marine prepare? Start by understanding what they will be doing to prepare themselves.
Understand that your future Marine may have to get physically in shape, lose weight, apply for waivers, study for exams, and more.
Your support depends on what challenges your loved one faces.
The biggest battle is always mental preparation and going into the unknown. Our Preparation Guides will eliminate the guesswork and will set them on a path to outperforming their peers.
If your future Marine needs to lose weight, helping them by joining them on their weight loss journey is extremely helpful. Weight loss is hard and requires immense discipline. Removing junk food from the home and helping them cook healthy meals, maintain accountability, and track progress is tremendous.
If your Marine needs to get in shape, help them by offering them support, helping them with access to places to train, or providing them a great workout plan to get started.
You will be their rock when times get tough. You can help them succeed in this area as you have in the others throughout their lives. You can always show your support by getting some awesome Marine Merch!