"Thank you, we're very proud..."

Discussion in 'Service Academy Parents' started by mom3boys, Mar 24, 2008.

  1. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    I just have to vent. I wonder if anyone else is experiencing what we are. As we are running into friends/aquaintances the question invariably comes up: where is DS going to school? When I proudly answer "West Point!" the answer that comes back is not the "wow!! how great!" that I expect, but more of a mix of "You're going to let him (!!!) do THAT??" or "I'll pray for you!"

    When I was in school (albeit long ago...) getting into WP was one BIG accomplishment. I thought it still was...I believe it still is HUGE. Yes, military service is not a risk-free career choice. I get that...I guess I'm very frustrated that the kids who are gaining acceptance into some of the schools my DS turned down (to go to WP) are celebrated, where my kid is looked at like he must have a screw loose for choosing this path. So I ask, "whose kids are supposed to go and be the leaders? Someone not as valuable as my son? Whose son/daughter is that?"

    Excuse my rant...I just needed to vent before I blew up at the next person who makes insensitive, stupid comments about my son's choice.:unhappy::mad:
     
  2. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    Oy! Some idiots shouldn't be allowed to breed! :mad:

    No excuse is needed. I know I'd feel the same way. OTOH, you know precisely what your son is doing, and what it means. So does he.

    The rest of the planet can go and spit.

    Frankly, I'm looking forward to your next post, where you tell of how you totally went medieval on the next moron who responds to you like that. Just be sure to post the video of the ***-whooping they got on YouTube! :thumb:
     
  3. donsauga

    donsauga Member

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    mom3boys have you ever thought they are not being insensitive, but they are being heartfelt. If I was the mother of a son of course I would be exstatic, but there is always going to be some worrying. Don't get so upset, but yeah great congrats to your son!
     
  4. kp2001

    kp2001 USMMA Alumnus

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    I can totally see this response coming from a subset of people in today's society.

    One thing many people don't realize is that by going to West Point they are going to college and not war. You'd be amazed at the number of people who think by going to West Point you will be in a warzone within months. They seem to forget that there are four years of hard work and dedication to come before a cadet/midshipman gets near a war zone. (Unless they go to USMMA which continues to send it's midshipmen into war zones on a regular basis)
     
  5. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    Donsauga, some of it is heartfelt concern, certainly; but the looks on the faces speak volumes. They think I am nuts for not forbidding this (one friend said: so and so's son wanted to do that too, but she just put her foot down and said absolutely not...). Most of the comments are made by clods who don't understand that a strong military is crucial and a strong military has a strong leadership as its backbone. Sigh. :eek:
     
  6. Antoinette

    Antoinette Founding Member

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    mom3boys, your experience is not unique. Last year, my WP candidate, my husband, his brother, and I all got those questioning comments about his choice to attend West Point. It is part of the the experience. Perhaps it is training for the harder times ahead...Over the last nine months many have come forward with messages of support. We celebrate that and forget the rest.

    Many congratulations to your son for making the choice to serve his country as an officer. I am hearing the jets flying over and the marching bands in celebration of his amazing and wonderful appointment to West Point!

    :tomcat: :tank1: :usa:
     
  7. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    Repeat after me....

    "They DO support the troops! They DO support the troops! They..." :rolleyes:

    Way back in the day we didn't have much to worry about aside from a sudden all-out war with the Soviets which, in hindsight, wasn't all that probable short of a real screwup somewhere.

    Still, going into the military isn't exactly the safest and most cuddly profession even in peacetime. When my mom proudly announced that I was going to Navy, the reaction was either "Really? Where's that?" or "Oh, my! Aren't you worried?" Different attitude altogether from those described above. More often than not, the reaction was a simple "Wow!".

    Parents who "just put their foot down" and prevent their kid from going to USxA are beneath contempt in my book, because there is NO GOOD REASON they can give for it.
     
  8. sealion

    sealion Member

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    Hey Mom3boys - you're proud of your son and that's probably what matters most to him. He sounds like a fine young man who understands and appreciates intrinisic value and worthwhile endeavors.

    Personally, I practice extreme patience with people of underdeveloped discretion. Eventually some will come to acknowledge what you already know and it's good to leave that door open.

    Thanks for not bashing Harvard! :smile:
     
  9. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    Just so you don't think all our friends are clods: DS went w/ me to vote last month (his first election). Neighbor behind us makes conversation: "Where you going to college?" DS: "WP, sir." Neighbor: "Please allow me to shake your hand! My dad was stationed there and I could not even get in! I commissioned through my second choice. I am so proud of you."

    It just seems for every one great comment like that one, we get to listen to 10 dolts. Yes, we support our troops...just don't ask for our kids to join!
     
  10. donsauga

    donsauga Member

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    to kp2001 i do not in any way think that a service academy= war, what i meant is there a natural maternal instinct to worry about your children when they go away to college, especially a service academy where a mother cannot help you with your troubles. i am not a subset of those people, but i am a person who knows that even if they will not admit it parents will always worry, and they truly want someone to understand where they are coming from. sorry for the confusion.
     
  11. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    :yllol:

    I've GOT to remember that expression! :biggrin::thumb:
     
  12. AFAMOM08

    AFAMOM08 Member

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    I'm sorry you are getting those types of responses. I find it is best to ignore those who don't "get it" and move on.

    We have had so many people say things like " you must be so proud" and "please thank your son" over the past four years. Whenever my son has traveled home, (we live in Las Vegas) he has been welcomed and given all sorts of perks (none that he has asked for ). I'm in the process of planning our son's graduation from USAFA in May and have had to limit our list of guests, since so many of our friends have expressed an interest in attending the graduation ceremony and showing their support. It has been a very interesting ride!

    M3Boys--congratulations to you and your son--welcome aboard--the next four years will drag by at the same time that they fly by!
     
  13. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    My parents always got "Oh....hmmm...why didn't he go to college?"


    Of course, pre-Katrina...and pre-news coverage of my branch, my HS classmates thought it was Baywatch.


    In fact, the first time I even felt the least bit good about a response was while I was visiting a good HS friend who was at Yale. His female friend asked where I went, and I told her, and to my surprise, she said "That's a very tough school to get into, congrats."

    Other than that as my ship pulled into south pier in NYC, my friend still thought, as he attended medical school in NYC, that after I graduated I would be cleaning the head (bathroom) and getting yelled at. I clean my head, and sometimes I am "Corrected", but not to the level he expected.
     
  14. AZcadet

    AZcadet Member

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    Sometimes I get irritated when people just assume I'm not going to college or am "wasting my life when I could go ivy league" (no offense). I just have to realize that I know and my (soon to be) fellow cadets know that we're proud of what we're doing and honored to serve our country.:rolleyes:
     
  15. USNA69

    USNA69 Banned

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    If your goal is that either you or your son or daughter attend a service academy for prestige or to reap accolades from the general American public, you will be in for a rude awakening. All tirades and angry faces aside, as several have pointed out, they don’t know what the heck you are gloating about. On a scale of one to ten, with one being enlisting and being on permanent KP, peeling potatoes their entire enlistment, something akin to Gomer Pyle, USMC, and ten being a full free ride at Harvard, expect a response in the ‘two’ range. Remember, the average American family now is at least a generation removed from any military involvement and, tuning past the Army-Navy game, seeing the Army battalion spirit video from Iraq, think it is actually Army troops playing Navy sailors, and thinking that if we have enough troops to play a ball game, all the news about enlistment shortfalls must be a bunch of bull crap.

    Go to the Academy for your own personal satisfaction and to meet your own goals.
     
  16. momoftwins

    momoftwins Founding Member

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    Comments I received:

    Can't you talk her out of it?
    Don't you know that since they can't sign any soldiers up that they'll pull her out to go to Iraq and she'll die? (that one made me feel so good :rant2:
    Did I hear you say you're actually proud? Why?
    It's free. That's a great deal. So, what will you do with the college savings? You can remodel your kitchen! (some girlfriend!)
    Do they have sororities?
    What do you mean military college?
    Why not Navy? I'm sure it would be safer and she'll never have to go to Iraq. (No offense, zaphod or usna69 - not my thoughts at all)
    So, what can you do after graduation?
    Didn't she get into any real colleges? (love that one - NOT!)
    You mean you'll let her go into the Army???!!
    Ooooh! All those boys. And how many girls?

    And:

    The world and our country need kids like this. Thank you.
    I wish I had gone to West Point.
    I'll pray for you.
    What an honor!

    Some people really just don't understand. And some think they do.
     
  17. kp2001

    kp2001 USMMA Alumnus

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    Donsauga, my comments were not in any way directed at you. We were actually typing our responses at the same time so I had not even seen your response when creating mine.
     
  18. donsauga

    donsauga Member

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    sorry my bad. I guess i just read it wrong
     
  19. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    Thanks Momoftwins. I feel much better, and ready to face the day! Everyone here "gets it," as I knew would be the case. I'm glad I have a safe place to vent, as if I said what I thought to these others I would alienate them all! None of the comments I get bother DS...he knows why he made the choice to attend WP. He has the quiet confidence that comes with good choices. I guess no matter what comments I get in the future the best response will be, "yes, I'm very proud of him, thank you." :rolleyes:
     
  20. USNA69

    USNA69 Banned

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    Change both 'some's to 'most's and you have summed it up quite nicely.
     

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