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Having a child or family member in America’s Navy isn’t without its challenges.
If this is your child’s first time away from home, it can be tough on him or her – and on you. Luckily, you’re not the first parent or family member to weigh the risk and to walk this road – in fact, you can learn a lot from those who have at sources like NavyForMoms.com.
NavyForMoms.com is a great place to go to learn from other parents and family members. You may want to get started in the Forums section, and especially check out the Misperceptions About Navy Life discussion or some of the Boot Camp discussions. The site is sponsored by America’s Navy, but parents are free to express their opinions and share their stories. It’s truly a site for them to share with others in the same situation.
When your family member joins the Navy, they're joining more than an organization. They're gaining a family of brothers and sisters ready and willing to fight for a common goal. See them be a part of something great.
Your child or family member enlisted, and now he or she is at Boot Camp. Everything seems unfamiliar. It may help to arm yourself with information, support, friendship and advice from other Navy parents and family members
The U.S. Navy Life page is yet another place to view discussions and connect with others who’ve been where you are and felt what you may be feeling. There are even specific fan pages for specific communities in the Navy that you can find here and join.
With the exception of the 8 short weeks spent in Boot Camp (if an Enlisted Sailor), your child or family member will typically be just a phone call – or text message, email or instant message – away while serving in the Navy. Sailors have access to many forms of communication most of the time. These services are offered anywhere your son or daughter might be stationed (even while underway at sea).
And it’s not just a one-way street. Sailors look forward to hearing from home, so be sure to keep in touch with them. Here’s a parent-tested tip: Make it easy on them by sending a self-addressed, stamped envelope along with a few sheets of stationery. You’ll be amazed at the results.
Also, don’t worry about your son or daughter getting home for visits. Sailors are eligible to fly on a space-available basis on many United States military flights — free — whether it’s to take a vacation abroad or to come home. If there’s a flight going where they want to go and there’s room aboard, they’re welcome to fly.