Kate Germano and Kelly S. I would work to encourage a culture of compassionate listening, and I would try not to yell. This job seemed perfect for me. Parris Island is the only place in the Marine Corps where female Marines are made, and I wanted to ensure that every day of their thirteen weeks of training counted, so they could graduate tougher, faster, and smarter.
I hoped to take the lessons I had learned as a Marine— but also as a female Marine—and build up women so they understood just how capable they were. I Why do women love marines to prepare them to succeed in a Marine Corps that might not always be supportive or understanding of their goals; and I wanted them to leave with a strong vision of themselves and their abilities. I wanted it for my drill instructors.
I wanted it for my officers.
And I wanted it for Why do women love marines recruits. In my previous command assignment at a recruiting station, I had pushed to make good changes for my Marines to make sure they had more time off and less stressful jobs. I wanted to see fewer divorces, fewer drunk-driving cases, and fewer suicide attempts. I was extremely strict. But the things I did to fit in?
The yelling and cursing? They only made me stick out worse.
But no matter how we worked to overcome decades of apathy and low standards for performance, there were men at the highest levels of the Marine Corps who expected—even wanted—the women to fail.
And there were women in my battalion who fell so fully in line with the status quo that it never occurred to them to try to find out what the female Why do women love marines could really achieve.
In hindsight, I see that her comment perfectly encapsulated the perception of the battalion throughout the depot and the Marine Corps. Everyone had the expectation that Fourth Battalion, my battalion, was incapable. It could achieve enough to get by, but there was not an established tradition of excellence—a stated need to be better and best.
On top of all of that, the culture within Fourth Battalion was often petty and mean, riddled with rumors and false claims. The problems ran deep.
Female drill instructors were sleeping with female recruits, and with each other. Drill instructors abused the recruits.
Drill instructors abused other drill instructors. I would have to work through inappropriate sexual relationships, screaming as an accepted form of communication, and even fist fights. The issues with drill instructors sleeping with recruits had long been brushed under the rug.