how to encourage

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by jjohnson55, Jul 25, 2010.

  1. jjohnson55

    jjohnson55 Member

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    Now I could use some advice. My son is having a rough time and is depressed and feeling beat up and my gut tells me he is close to pulling the pin. Any suggestions on how to buck my son who is halfway across the country? Any input would be appreciated.
     
  2. shutterbugC

    shutterbugC Member

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    I don't know about you but constantly, I am writing my son and telling him that I am praying for him daily.
    Also I sign my letters:

    Be Strong,
    Be Determined,
    Be Encouraged that God loves you and He placed you there (or some variation along that line).

    Don't know if this helps him but it helps me.
     
  3. lilcola99

    lilcola99 Member

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    Maybe if you go over the reasons for his accepting he will recall the benefits. Have him talk to an advisor/clergy at "ease". A pro and con list for leaving may help also...Best of luck
     
  4. kdbax

    kdbax Member

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    Something I remember being posted by one of the "old timers" around this time last year: This is the end of Indoc, beginning of classes. Tell yourself, "Let me give it a try to Acceptance Day." That's five weeks. Then, "Let me make it to the end of the first trimester." Then, "Let me make it to Thanksgiving." Then, Let me make it to Christmas." And so on. It gives you a series of goals. And for some plebes, they're going to hit the end of one of those goals and say "no, this is not for me." For others, it convinces them that "yes, I can do this."

    Plebe year is definitely a series of lows and highs. One of DS's highs came in the 5K run (this year's takes place next week): he placed 4th out of about 600, first in his company. (And then it was a short move to the cross country team.:shake:) His low? Failing Calc II second trimester. When he came home that week, he was about at the lowest I've seen him - he already knew he failed Calc II and was very much afraid he had also failed Physics II, and looking at setback at best or disenrollment at worst. He ended up with a C in Physics II, so the Calc II failure just meant summer school.

    In fact, DH just returned from KP this morning with the car we let him use during summer school, loaded down with DS's stuff as well as stuff belonging to other 3C mids who didn't have a chance to store it in the sea lockers (DS is a B-split, so he's headed out to sea next week). DH commented on how happy DS is - part of it is looking forward to going out to sea, but the other part is feeling comfortable with the KP environment.
     
  5. Texmom

    Texmom Member

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    jjohnson55 - sent you a PM
     
  6. kpskilegac

    kpskilegac Member

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    sent a PM

    jjohnson55- just sent you a PM
     
  7. 2009KPer

    2009KPer Member

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    In my opinion, at this stage, it is too early to judge whether someone should be at KP or not.

    He has literally entered a brand new world in a very "forceful" way over a relatively short time period and a lot is being thrown onto his plate right now. It is intimidating - been there, done that. Staying at KP is less about ability (or the Academy probably wouldn't have extended an appointment offer) but more about one's desire to make it through.

    Aside from the motivation and encouragement you can give him as a parent, be sure that he talks about his concerns to not only other classmates, but to upperclassmen as well. Start with his 3/C team leader, then the 1/C squad leader, etc. No matter what his perspective may be at this point (and the experiences of Indoc probably have swayed that opinion greatly), the upperclassmen do want to see each and every Plebe make it through. Everyone at KP went through Plebe Year - nobody escapes it - and most, if not all, had some thoughts at some point about whether this is "the right path" or not. I won't sit here and say that KP is for everybody because there are some mids there for whom this is truly not the right place, but again, I emphasize - Fresh out of Indoc is not the time to make this call.

    It will get better, trust me. I did it.
     
  8. Mindy G

    Mindy G Member

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    Say I understand, you can do it, one day at a time, if that is hard just 1 hour, wait till classes start.
    Hopefully your DS is involved in a sport which can be an outlet.
    Remeber they call you and tell you when things are bad and we stew but they never will tell you that it got better. So we think it is bad 24/7.
    Hang in there, this to shall pass.
     
  9. 2012kpmam

    2012kpmam Member

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    Resources at KP

    There are many resources at Kings Point, but very often the plebes wait until they are in academic trouble to start accessing these resources. In addition to the upperclassmen, their peers can offer a lot of help, especially those that seem to be doing well in the "plebe killer" classes, Calc and Physics. Also, they should see their professors asap if they are getting the least bit lost. Another resource is the ACE, where there are tutors (if we're lucky this semester).

    Another resource is Mom and Dad Guest at Cookie Cafe. Your children will find out that Thursday is their favorite day. They can go to the CC at Land Hall anytime between 12 and 5 and get delicious homemade cookies sent from all over the country in addition to hot chocolate, coffee, ice tea and lemonade. But the part that is most valuable is the chance to talk to the Guests who have been helping students at KP for many years. Mr. Guest in an alum and they had a son attend KP, so they know exactly what each mid is going through and can offer insightful advice. And Mom Guest can offer a kind word when needed most. Encourage your children to find these lifelines.
     
  10. KP2013dramamama

    KP2013dramamama Member

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    Tell your son we are creatures of habits. It takes a good 4 weeks to change a habit. Indoc was shaping him. Also, I'd stress that fatigue and stress do a number on our brains and how we look at things. Also, making it bit by bit, as previously suggested, "I'll try thru Acceptance Weekend, etc." I'd say the number one thing we all eventually learn in life is that mental toughness can not only shape us, but save us. I will keep you and your son in my prayers.
     
  11. jnblucy

    jnblucy Member

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    Lots of great advice in these posts. We have found that at times more than anything else our DS (Class of 2013) just needs to vent over the phone when the going got tough. More than anything the venting concerned a tough class, big exam, professor he didn't like, etc. In the big picture, Indoc is just one of the hurdles your DS will encounter. Heck, my son was already laughing over some of the stuff his class went through at Indoc by the time Parents' Weekend rolled around.

    More than anything, I think his Company's camradarie helped our son and his buddies get through the first year...that and the friendships he made on his sports team. They study together, tutor each other and have built a support network far stronger than anything we can provide a 1,000 miles away.

    We love our occasional visits with him on Skype, and know enough now to not overreact to the occasional venting over the phone. But from what we have seen so far the success or failure of anyone at KP seems has alot more to do with how much "want to" they have, the support network they develop, and how willing them taking advantage of the resources available. Good luck!
     
  12. skubon

    skubon Member

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    Support

    Remember you are the only one your DS/DD can call and complain to or show their frustration. As stated earlier, we get the phone calls that the sky is falling but not telling us when the sun is out. That is what we are here for. There were times this past year when I dreaded answering the phone afraid of what new problem there was or afraid of hearing he was going to quit. Then I would feel guilty for feeling that way......:eek:

    All you can do is be there to let him vent. Remind him to take advantage of mentors, advisors, and especially tutors!!! Fortunately for my DS he had a friend who had just finished his plebe year and was great for encouraging him and telling him how much better it gets after that first year. Remind him the first year is the hardest!! We kept telling our DS over and over, just get thru this first year then decide. If your DS is not an athelete then encourage him to join some other group so he has others for support. They all eventually form tight bonds with other plebes who then pick each other up when they need it most.
    :thumb:
     
  13. XBulldog

    XBulldog Member

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    jjohnson55, I PMed you.
     
  14. alicetruscott

    alicetruscott New Member

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    letters help!

    I have been writing my son almost every day. He started out with a cold and ended up in the ER by day 2. So I have been writing a lot because I was worried. But I have been telling my kid "He's the BEST" since he was little. Any thing that puts a positive slant on the situation. Hang tough, don't give up!!!! And remember no matter what a plebe does it will be wrong. Just keep hanging in and fly under the radar when possible!
    I also think the daily writing gives them a link with home. This summer I also wrote my other son, who was attending OCS in Quantico, and my letters were highly appreciated. They won't have much time to write back, so write any way. Good Luck!
     

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