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Mature family man and aspiring Deck Cadet - can it work?

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  • Mature family man and aspiring Deck Cadet - can it work?

    Just new on here today! I've always wanted to be a Deck Officer however for whatever reason it hasn't happened yet. Now in my mid-forties, happily married with a lovely family (aged 12 to 18), I still find myself thinking about being at sea EVERY day (as I sit in my boring office job!). I've checked it out, and I'm eligible to join a Foundation Degree cadet programme. I certainly don't feel too old for a career change and I've saved just about enough money to be able to afford the drop in salary for a few years. My only problem now is that my feelings of excitement to finally get this dream started are confused by feelings of guilt towards my wife and family. I'd be interested to hear some opinions...

    Am I too old now?
    Am I being completely selfish?
    Is this really a single man's game?


  • #2
    No, not too old

    Tricky, it depends if your family understand and support you, only you can answer that really..... I wouldn't say you are, however I have on ever done this from leaving school so partners and the likes have ways known what they where getting into, a long family chat might be in order

    No its not just for single people
    Trust me I'm a Chief.

    Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
    Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
    No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.

    Twitter:- @DeeChief


    • #3
      Hi Mac,

      The only person that can answer those questions are you and is entirely dependant on your own personal circumstances. Of course its not a single mans game, most people are married, kids etc.


      • #4
        Good comments above. Other people in similar situations to you have successfully completed a cadetship. It certainly isn't a walk in the park and will put a lot of challenges on you and your family, but since your asking here I'm guessing you already realised that.
        It is hard when you get an e-mail or text from home where something has gone wrong; medical emergency, burglary, death in the family etc etc and you aren't able to jump in and help sort out the problem. Communication can at times be difficult at sea.
        If you can take the financial hit, and your family are supportive, then you are half way there! You will need to be frank and honest with them though. The cadetship is only the start.


        • #5
          Never to old, there is somebody on here who has been given an interview at the age of 50. Also talk it over with your family, discuss the benefits etc with them.
          Phase 5 SPD engine cadet at city of Glasgow college. Doing a a combined motor and steam ticket.


          • #6
            It would be a huge challenge I'm sure - generally by the time you get to your mid 40's you are well advanced up the ladder and with that comes short rotations, long leaves, family travel allowances and a healthy salary.
            Not to say it would be impossible, but you would need a very supportive family indeed.
            Is it a singles man game? - as a cadet and junior officer, I would have to say yes, generally, but that not exclusively so.
            Are you being selfish? - probably slightly so, but you only get one shot at life - how terrible to lead a selfless life with regrets than to take a chance on something you feel passionately about.
            Cruise ship Captain with experience on-board Passenger Vessels ranging from 5500-150000 GRT.


            • #7
              I'm a married cadet in my forties. I'm not finding any particular difficulties that could not be foreseen nor age specific difficulties. pm me if you have any specific private questions. Out of my class of 44 , I think 8 or 9 are above 25 (and so classified as mature cadets) and 5 are over 30. I think there may be some funding obstacle if you already have a degree (as in my case), with respect to ineligibility for student loans. I am doing my course in Ireland where the system and costs are different to that in UK.


              • #8
                Thanks all for the sound advice - very much appreciated. Time to have that family chat...I may need to take you up on that offer elir71!


                • #9
                  Let us know how it goes with the family! Bribe them with offers of free trips at sea (don't tell them you might be working on containers)!!