At this stage, this web site is mainly for those considering non-officer entry to the armed forces; the rules for officers are different, although some of the issues are the same. A few general remarks follow.
Officers tend to be more satisfied in their work than non-officers and tend to experience fewer problems. It is still worth asking yourself the following questions:
- Why do you want to join?
- Are you aware of the rules governing leaving regular service after a minimum period usually lasting several years?
- Are you aware that you would be obliged to serve in the reserve after leaving regular service?
- How would you feel about having to take life as part of your job (which all service personnel may be ordered to do even if not in a front-line role)?
- How would you feel about the prospect of coming under fire at risk of your life (which is a possibility for all personnel even if not in a front-line role)?
- Are you aware of the risks of combat stress and other mental health problems - how would you cope with that?
- Are you aware that the armed forces have traditionally had a problem with bullying and sexual harassment - how would you cope with that?
- Most new personnel get a shock when they find that military life is very different from civilian life - how would you cope with that?
- You might have to spend long periods away from home, family and friends - how do you feel about that?
- Are you aware that if your experience began to tell you that military operations were wrong, you might be able to claim 'conscientious objector' status and be honourably discharged?
- What are the best and worst things about a military career in your view?
If you have good answers to all the above questions then you are probably better prepared than most to manage their experience of military life, but it is still recommended that you continue to seek independent advice.
Last Updated on Monday, 07 January 2008 00:00