Hey guys! I wanted to take a moment and talk with you about Recruiting duty. I know this has nothing to do with home decor, DIY or parties, but it has been weighing heavy on my heart as of late. My husband is in the Marines and it hasn’t always been easy. I want to be real with y’all. I don’t mean to upset anyone or scare anyone away. I just want to give my honest opinion about Recruiting Duty in the Marines.
Jeff has been in the Marine Corps for a little over nine years. He is in one of the largest MOS’ and was coming up on his ten year mark. Recruiting duty was a career move for us. Although he did volunteer for recruiting duty, we didn’t go willingly, but we knew it was something that we had to do. Knowing it was only a three year duty station, how hard could it be right?!
Luckily for us, we were stationed at Camp Pendleton when Jeff left for recruiting school. He was still able to drive home every weekend to see us. Training was 3 months in California and was stressful. While he was in school I tried searching for advice on being a recruiter wife. What to expect, anything really.
All I could find was ‘it is what you make it’ or “it’s better than them being deployed”
The last month of schooling you finally find out where you will be stationed. It’s not like the fleet, where the Marines only have five main bases. You could be stationed anywhere in the U.S. This was the most frustrating for me. I could have used those two months to find a house, kids school, day care, even a job. But nope. Leave it to the marine corps to wait to the very last minute to give you orders. Now, your spouse can request a byname. Your spouse will put his/her request in while he/she is in Recruiting school. They will get in contact with the RS Sgt Major of the area where you want to go. Your request is not guaranteed, until it has been approved. You just might end up in Wyoming thousands of miles away from all friends and families. Meh.
You have finally gotten orders. And when I say finally, I mean possibly the week your moving. lol Very stressful. You most likely will be living in a civilian town. That does sound nice, until you realize they don’t have commissaries, cheaper sports and daycare and neighbors who are more welcoming. Living in a civilian town while my husband was deployed was stressful. I felt like I was constantly fighting with Tricare with referrals and copayments. It also was a lot harder to meet people. We were fortunate enough to live near an air force base.
Jeff was given the opportunity to take leave before he started ‘recruiting.’ I highly recommend your spouse take as much leave as his command allows. Because he will never take leave again. Okay, maybe not never, just not in the next three years lol. Your spouse will have a quota that has to be met each month. Now each RS, recruiting station, is different but not making mission is not an option. The command will find out why mission is not being met. Are the recruiters making enough phone calls, appointments or interviews. What questions are being asked during an interview?
Jeff averagely works 16 hour days and sometimes weekends. The second saturday of every month is the Poole function. Where they get all the kids together and work out. At least that’s the week Cheyenne does it. I try and wait up for him just so I can see his face and ask him a couple questions before we both pass out from exhaustion. And don’t think because it’s Thanksgiving that they will have a day off work. The recruiters,here in Cheyenne, weren’t going to have Thanksgiving off if they didn’t make mission for the month. Thankfully they did and were able to come home early on Thanksgiving. When I say early, I mean 4 pm. We were able to have thanksgiving dinner together and enjoy a movie as a family. Something I don’t take granted for on this duty.
If you are stationed in 8th district please take advantage of DSOC. It’s a program that only 8th district offers and comes out of there budget. DSOC is a three day course at headquarters, texas, for recruiter wives. Your airfare and hotel is paid for and you get per diem. You are given so much incredible information about recruiting duty. What the command expects from your spouse, ways to handle all of the stress, programs that are available to your family if you live far away from a base, etc. The command offers DSOC twice a year. If you have little ones don’t worry. Your spouse will be home with them all three days. Now they will still be working, but they will be home. I highly recommend it!
We have been on Recruiting duty for 1.5 years. Jeff volunteered for Recruiting duty as a career move, and he made the right choice. That same year he was promoted. Jeff was pinned inside the Bronco football stadium. That was pretty awesome. Within this last month they did make Jeff the SNCOIC or the boss. We will see how that changes things around here.
The saying ‘It is what you make it’ doesn’t apply here. More like ‘grab life by the horns’ or ‘Put on your big girl panties ‘ lol I don’t want to scare anyone away from Recruiting duty. It has really helped my husband career. As a family we have had to sacrifice. Sometimes I feel like we were put on the back burner for weeks at a time. We are stronger because of this duty and I feel like I could easily take on another deployment. As a new recruiter wife, please don’t be a hermit the entire duty. You will be miserable, I promise you. Become friends with the other spouses. Have monthly craft nights, movie night or weekly wine nights lol. Also, you can go into your spouses office and have lunch. As long as they don’t have an interview or making phone calls, take advantage of anytime you can spend with your spouse.
And please remember, try not to get mad at your spouse for being at the office for such long hours. Trust me, he rather be home with you than having his military career rely on a 17 year old kid. A lot of times Jeff will bring work home with him just so he can see the kids before they go to bed. He is still working from home, but at least he is home. This duty sucks, but it will end. And you can do it!
It’s ok to say this duty sucks! Recruiting duty is not easy. It’s stressful, aggravating, and your spouse might miss his kids birthdays, or anniversaries. But y’all will survive and it’ll make you a stronger military spouse! If you have any questions or just want to vent please contact me!