This site is for mothers of kids in the U.S. Navy and for Moms who have questions about Navy life for their kids.



Choose your Username.  For the privacy and safety of you and/or your sailor, NO LAST NAMES ARE ALLOWED, even if your last name differs from that of your sailor (please make sure your URL address does not include your last name either).  Also, please do not include your email address in your user name. Go to "Settings" above to set your Username.  While there, complete your Profile so you can post and share photos and videos of your Sailor and share stories with other moms!

Make sure to read our Community Guidelines and this Navy Operations Security (OPSEC) checklist - loose lips sink ships!

Join groups!  Browse for groups for your PIR date, your sailor's occupational specialty, "A" school, assigned ship, homeport city, your own city or state, and a myriad of other interests. Jump in and introduce yourself!  Start making friends that can last a lifetime.

Link to Navy Speak - Navy Terms & Acronyms: Navy Speak

All Hands Magazine's full length documentary "Making a Sailor": This video follows four recruits through Boot Camp in the spring of 2018 who were assigned to DIV 229, an integrated division, which had PIR on 05/25/2018. 

Boot Camp: Making a Sailor (Full Length Documentary - 2018)

Boot Camp: Behind the Scenes at RTC

...and visit - America's Navy and also Navy Live - The Official Blog of the Navy to learn more.

OPSEC - Navy Operations Security

Always keep Navy Operations Security in mind.  In the Navy, it's essential to remember that "loose lips sink ships."  OPSEC is everyone's responsibility. 

DON'T post critical information including future destinations or ports of call; future operations, exercises or missions; deployment or homecoming dates.  

DO be smart, use your head, always think OPSEC when using texts, email, phone, and social media, and watch this video: "Importance of Navy OPSEC."

Follow this link for OPSEC Guidelines:



**UPDATE 4/26/2022** Effective with the May 6, 2022 PIR 4 guests will be allowed.  Still must be fully vaccinated to attend.

**UPDATE as of 11/10/2022 PIR vaccination is no longer required.

**UPDATE 7/29/2021** You now must be fully vaccinated in order to attend PIR:

In light of observed changes and impact of the Coronavirus Delta Variant and out of an abundance of caution for our recruits, Sailors, staff, and guests, Recruit Training Command is restricting Pass-in-Review (recruit graduation) to ONLY fully immunized guests (14-days post final COVID vaccination dose).  


RTC Graduation

**UPDATE 8/25/2022 - MASK MANDATE IS LIFTED.  Vaccinations still required.

**UPDATE 11/10/22 PIR - Vaccinations no longer required.


Please note! Changes to this guide happened in October 2017. Tickets are now issued for all guests, and all guests must have a ticket to enter base. A separate parking pass is no longer needed to drive on to base for parking.

Please see changes to attending PIR in the PAGES column. The PAGES are located under the member icons on the right side.

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Navy Speak

Click here to learn common Navy terms and acronyms!  (Hint:  When you can speak an entire sentence using only acronyms and one verb, you're truly a Navy mom.)

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Visite esta página para explorar en su idioma las oportunidades de educación y carreras para sus hijos en el Navy.


Hello there!
My name is Christina. I have seriously been considering joining the Navy. I want to find out as much as possible before I make the final decision. My recruiter suggested this site to me to get some questions answered that he couldn't answer.
Basically, I am considering the Navy as a means to pay for school. I am an art major and know that any job I get from that won't pay off student loans I may incur. My question is, what is life like in the Navy for females? What is it like when you no longer have the uniform on? I am very feminine and want to know how much of that will change after I join. Keep in mind that I grew up with five brothers, so when I say feminine, I simply mean that I can still play hard, I just like to feel like a woman.

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I was in the Navy, had a great time.   You can be as girly as you like when on liberty (normal time off like evenings and weekends).   In uniform, you will have to have your hair, make up and nails within regulation,  you can even wear a little bit of jewelry (specific kinds) if your job allows.  

Training is a bit of a hassle, you do have to cut your hair for boot camp.  Your daily work will depend on what rate you are trained for.  Some work in offices, others get as down and dirty as any guy.  You'll probably go to sea, and share berthing with a lot of other young women.  It gets weird.  As a junior sailor, if you get shore duty, you'll probably be required to live in a barracks room, with one or two roommates.  The newer facilities are quite nice.  

As long as you do the job you train for, and follow regulations, you can still be your own person on your off time.  Sure, there are rules concerning inappropriate behavior, but they aren't intrusive.

Last deployment one of the ports my sailor visited was Spain, they were there for about 4 days, she bought the prettiest sun dress and shoes on her first day there, the next day all the female sailors she was with all dressed up, hair, makeup etc, so they could feel like girls and had a really fun time walking around the area, and truly enjoying their liberty time. So picture in your head, 6 female sailors leaving an aircraft carrier all dressed in their Sunday best, it must have been a sight!  She does not have a girly job at all.

When they have liberty on base, they do exactly what civilians do, get manicures,pedis, shopping, out to dinner, etc. Work is work, they do their jobs and have fun when they are not working.


I totally agree with Kathy....  

In the Navy we don't see men, women, blacks, asians... We see sailors.  It doesn't matter which rating you're in, you will do what is common within that group.   The engineering ratings acts totally different than the admin ratings.  One thing for dang sure is you don't want to be labeled as "a woman".  It's totally sends the wrong message to the crew.  Remember, you will be a SAILOR.  Which means you can, and will, do everything a man can do.

So you totally understand what I'm saying here, while in uniform you are not a woman.  Out of uniform, you go girl!  You get that female thing going on.  You show how you can clean up and be hot. You do all the stuff women do, but do it better!  The guys will really respect that, you just need remember to keep both lifestyles separated.  

A couple questions: 

1.  If you had a choice, which 5 ratings would you like to get?  There is a big difference between an Yeoman (YN) and a Machinist Mate (MM).

2.  Per your schooling.  The Navy has a new rule that says you can't take college classes until you have completed 1 year at your 1st duty station.  Remember some "C" schools are really long, you might not start taking college classes until you have at least 3 years in.  Rating like Nuke, CTT, are almost 2 years long.  

3.  The college classes you take in the Navy don't even touch your GI bill college fund.  And if you decide not to use it, you can pass it along to your children.  

4.  Over at, females post about there experiences.  You might want to check them out.

also check out

btw: Hey I hear ya,sometimes I feel like a woman too.....j/k

(man I find this video funny, especially the head bob)

Thank you for your replies!
@Anti M Fortunately for me, my hair is already pretty short. I'm aiming to get into linguistics, I've been looking at translating or cryptology. Will that require me to be at sea?
@Kathy That's good to know that she can still be a girl outside of work. That was my main concern. As I was telling some of my friends and family about my decision, they wanted me to be sure that I can still be that way.
@Craig I'm glad that the work place is like that. Like I said to Kathy, I wanted to be sure that I can have the leisure time to be myself.
As for your questions:
1. As far as ratings are concerned, I'm completely ignorant. My recruiter said I would start as an E3 because of my college credits.
2. For school, I want to go into cryptology or translating. My recruiter said that I would go to school in Monterey for about a year. He said that language school counts as college credits. Since I will have my associates when I join, I'm hoping that earns me my bachelors. (I've heard that the school counts as another 60 units- two years of school, is that accurate?)

Yes, you must absolutely make sure the E-3 guarantee is in the contract or it won't happen.

I don't know enough about the language schools to know if you'd go to sea, but as a sailor, you must be prepared for the possibility.  You might pull orders to an overseas or isolated duty station as your sea duty.  Craig's CT groups may give you a better picture of what is the norm for the fleet right now.  Things change, stay flexible.

Also, don't be so locked into one rate that the recruiter can't work with you.  The Navy is overmanned, you need them more than they need you.  Again, a little flexibility will go a long way.  I was an ET, and I had zero idea of electronics when I began, but I truly enjoyed it.  

Hi Christina.

It sounds like you have some things in common with my daughter Elaine, who is a Naval officer assigned to Newport RI now.  She joined ROTC at college as a "walk on" and earned herself a scholarship by her junior year. In June 2011 she received a graduate degree from Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey.  She's been in the Navy for 7 years now and she likes it a lot -- and the Navy seems to like her, too.

If you decide to go ROTC you'll have a boot camp before classes start.  You can see if you like the environment or if you can't stand it.  If it's not for you, at least you won't have wasted a lot of time and you won't owe the government for your scholarship.  Elaine played softball in high school and enjoys running and physical exercise, but she's not a hard core jock by any means.  She gets along great with guys but she has strong boundaries and has always known how to keep things on a friendship-only basis. From what she's told me, that's a VERY important thing for women to know if they want to succeed in the Navy.

Say you decide the ROTC environment is ok with you.  Then I recommend that you get good grades in college, get your commission, go see the world (Elaine's first assignment was to Yokosuka, Japan), and maybe go to grad school in Monterey (that's if you want to stay in).  Lots of good jobs for Linguists, especially with a Masters.

Best of luck to you, Christina.  If you want to contact my daughter, let me know in a private message.

Nadeen Lester


whatever your recruiter promises you, be sure its written down, verbal does not count here. Make sure its in your contract before you sign on the line. Best of luck in your pursuits.

Christina - I'm actually the group admin for the Cryptology section and also the Deppers section here at N4M.  I'm a retired CTM.  My son and nephew are both active duty CT's.  So I know the whole picture about the CT community.  Any questions you have about the CT ratings, I will know.

I'd recommend you also join these groups:



and the CTI group:

Per the school credit, be really careful with want you are hearing.  The school counts as credit, but can only be used/transfered to certain schools. Most schools only take a few credits.    

You talk about the Navy paying for your you mean the bills you already have or the future college? 


Also I just retired in Oct from the USN, was a EN for the first 10 1/2 years and than an as for a female point of view feel free to him me up.  Also I recommend you go over to the DEP group as this one is more for the loved ones of people who have or are leaving for the Navy..not so much for the people in the USN. 

I hate for people to join ANY branch of the military just to pay for college!  I really hope you weigh all of your options, as the military COULD lead to much,much, more than just paying for college.  You could wind up in combat in one way or another and you could be one of those people forever bitter about our country's military because that is not why you signed up.  Just please make sure you consider the decision carefully?

The Navy can be a great way to get started in life. You will learn a speciality, responsibility, cooperation, respect for your country, your command, fellow shipmates and yourself. All of that and the ability to save money for your education, if you plan well. The Navy does have education opportunities but do not depend on them paying for the balance of your degree. My two daughters both chose to serve. My daughter in the Navy has trained with really tough DIs and has done 7 months of sea duty. As long as you do your job and NEVER play the "girl"card, yu will earn the respect and friendship of your shipmates. Off duty or on leave you can be yourself. The shopping overseas is quite a treat! Good luck to you as you evaluate your options. The Navy is not for everyone but it can be a very fulfilling career full of all kinds of opportunity. Best wishes.
This army shall not soon forget Molly Pitcher.

Molly's real name was Mary Hays. She earned the name Molly Pitcher because she provided water to the artillery men of the continental army. Her husband was one of those men.

During the battle of Monmouth in 1778, Molly's husband fell and was removed from the field of battle. A distraught Molly took his place at the cannon. The battle of Monmouth was a major victory for the fledgling continental army. Later, George Washington himself searched for this woman who manned the cannon against the British. When he found her, he issued a warrant making her a non commissioned officer. She became known as Sergeant Molly for the rest of her life.

Women have taken an active role in founding and defending this nation since it's inception.

You see, the question isn't about the level of femininity or any lack thereof in your personality traits. The question is, will you like Molly, man the d@mned cannon? Will you, as sailors before you, stand the watch? Will you defend the constitution against enemies, foreign and domestic?

If the answer is yes, then by all means, volunteer.


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