It is important to look at the advantages of the military, but it also important to consider reasons not to join the military. The fact of the matter is that just like there are good things about the military. There are also bad parts of military life. The military asks a lot of you and requires sacrifices from you and if you have a family they have to make sacrifices too. You can check out my video on Girl’s Guide to the Military channel on YouTube channel to answer your questions about military life. The video for this particular topic is here.
1. Medical Disqualifications
Your military career can end before it gets started if you are medically disqualified. The military has each potential member go through a full physical at the Military Entrance Processing Station, commonly known as MEPS. There you will go through an in-depth physical while also providing details about your military history. Make sure to talk to your recruiter about your military concerns.
2. Education Requirements
If you have a high school diploma or college degree you won’t have any issues with having the right educational requirements to serve. If you have a GED make sure your recruiter knows. While it isn’t required to have a diploma it can cause issues. You will also need to take the Armed Service Vocational Aptitude Battery commonly known as ASVAB to help you determine what your career field you are qualified for. The ASVAB also has minimum standards for service. Some branches have specific tests for officers, but other branches use the ASVAB for enlisted and officers. Either way, you must meet the minimum standards for service, and depending on the career field you are aiming for meet those standards as well.
You might deploy. You might even deploy with a branch you are not serving in. This is something you have to be willing and prepared to do. The military’s job is to fight our nation’s wars. You must be prepared to give your life defending the country.
4. Family and Friends talk you out of it
This is not a reason to not join, but it is a reason people decide not to join. The military can be a great place for you, but your family may worry about you living farther away or deploying. It is important to listen to family and friends, but also yourself. Do what you think is best and use the resources on this site and channel to help you.
Serving in the military on active duty means you will go where the military sends you. And it could be anywhere. Serving in the military means that you go where they send you and you live where they tell you. If you don’t want to move away from family and friends you could consider the National Guard or Reserves if you live near either of those options.
6. You cannot quit
You can quit, but not until your service commitment (often four to six years) is complete. If you do not like the military or do not want to deploy or move where they tell you, it doesn’t matter. You signed up to serve and until your commitment is up you are required to do what the military tells you.
7. Recruiter experience
There are good and bad recruiters. The goal of this guide is to give you another voice in helping to decide if the military is right for you. It also was created to help set you up for success. Recruiters work for the military and they have jobs they need to fill so make sure you use these resources to help make the best choice for you.
8. Military is Male-Dominated
This isn’t a reason not to join the military, but it is something to consider and be aware of when joining. Because of the culture of military service being a majority of males. There are high rates of harassment, assault, and rape. Being aware of this culture can help protect you from it. The military is currently working on enacting policies to help with gender discrimination and the military sexual trauma experienced by both men and women in the military. Hopefully, these changes will help create a more inclusive environment.
9. The military isn’t a good fit
It is honorable to serve in the military. That doesn’t mean the military is right for everyone. If you consider military service and don’t feel that you want to follow orders, limit the amount of control of your life, and/or don’t want to deploy overseas the military probably isn’t a good fit for you. For some people, the military is a great fit and opens many doors, but it isn’t for everyone.
Are you considered joining the military? Check out my free Girl’s Guide to the Military to help answer all your questions: