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I have been off the Troop's payroll since November. I could not convince my son to join another troop, but he wants to finish his Eagle with his friends (he is 1 SMC and BOR from Life).


I had several parents asking me to come back. I had several scouts asking me to come back; however, the SM and CC have not; as a matter of fact, they finally got off their duffs to seek out 2 new ASMs and a new MB counselor.


Frankly, since November, I have lost the meaning of scouting. My respect for Eagle scout rank is lost because of the bad experience that I had with the eagle scout (and his father, another eagle scout).


My better half is making me feel very guilty for I did, but I had a principle that I must stand on.


I am trying to find the meaning of scout again. Can you help me?


If you want to criticize me for being selfish or that I was wrong, then please save your typing energy. That's not what I asked. I just want to know how I can regain my love for scouting and its principles. In other words, what have you done when you have lost the love for scouting in order to get back on track?


Thank you in advance!



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Sorry to hear you feel that way. I think a lot of people go through that, though in greater or lesser degrees and for different reasons.


Maybe one thing to do is find some small little thing that you enjoy doing, unrelated to the troop, and just do that one little thing. For example, maybe you really like archery and would enjoy taking a couple of days to help with the cub day camp archery range this summer. Or maybe you enjoy sharing your dutch oven skills with others and you want to do a little cooking at (or for) an upcoming Round Table. It doesn't have to be with or about your own son or his troop; there are lots of folks who will be delighted to benefit from your knowledge. But, if you want to do more with your son, ask him to do some outdoor activity with you that you both enjoy, maybe inviting a friend or two of his along. It doesn't have to be "for scouts," it can be "for fun." Maybe just spending time outdoors with a couple of kids whose company you enjoy will help you rekindle your spark for scouting. After all that's what drew most people into scouting to start with - not the day-to-day administrative and organizational hassles of running a unit or the stress-inducing need to manage badly behaved adults.


I hope you find it, whatever "it" may be for you.


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OneHour, have you though about staffing? District, camp or council?  How about helping a struggling Pack?  If you were in our area I would beg you to be our unit commissioner! We need some good people desperatly! You don't have to work with the troop which gave you trouble but they may end up seeing what they are missing. Keep looking as there are many places you will be very welcomed.


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The first question one must ask is: For whom is scouting being done? If it's for oneself, then it may not be so bad that they bow out. If it's for their own son, then maybe they could bow out too, but if it's for all the boys that cross one's path, then does it really make any difference which boys they are?


I "followed" my own boy from Tiger through Star and one day he decided he was done. That was 12 years ago and it hasn't made much difference for me whether he was there or not. It would have been nice to see him Eagle, but it wasn't in the cards for him. I'm no longer even with his original troop and I still have a handful of young boys that need scouting and what it stands for.


The council/district have asked me to take on a bigger role with them, but I regularly turn them down. I want to be with the boys. I want to enjoy their company, I want to watch them grow into adults and as a few have shown, work with them in continuing the units I work with. 10 years ago I started a Venturing Crew and now have charter members that are on my committee and serve as AA's.


Find what you do best and stay there. Don't sweat the small stuff because it's mostly small stuff. After 20+ years of scouting, I still get excited about going to scout meetings!


Step back, look at all the options, and simply do one little thing that would make you excited about it. Don't worry about anything or anyone except those who will benefit from your efforts. If they appreciate your time, your talent and interest, you're onto something good. Unless you gain something of value, you'll not have anything of value to pass onto the boys. If you get excited, the boys will too. Be yourself, find a troop that is struggling and would totally appreciate having you help them. Let the boys bring you healing and comfort. They have a way of doing that when you least expect it and you'll never find it if you're not with them.



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Your message hits close to home for me.

I have seen some scouts become Eagles that I question why. After reflecting on this, I decided I am not going to dwell on them but on the ones that I think deserve it.

My son has aged out of the troop, I miss the campouts, what I have found to reignite my scouting spirit is staffing NYLT, maybe you could give that a try.

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OneHour, I have always taken a philosophical approach towards great institutions like our government, my church (Roman Catholic), and scouts. Each holds forth lofty ideals and goals but theres one problem the administrators and participants are mere human beings and as such these institutions will always be less than perfect.


If a politician falls in disgrace because he or she failed to abide by the law does this mean we should just give up on our laws and our Constitution?


The sex scandal that has rocked my Church has outraged and tested the faith of many, but I remind myself that for every disgraced priest there are many thousands that have faithfully ministered to and inspired their congregations.


So it is with scouting. If you really believe in scoutings principals and you feel good about abiding by them and teaching them then dont let your experience with a couple of bad scouters destroy the whole edifice of scouting for you. Read through the threads in this Forum and youll see some crazy stuff going on but mostly youll see good people who are excited about scouting sharing ideas for the greater good of the program.


I have had problems (even a telephone scream fest at my place of employment) with committeepersons that Im not very fond of but I dont let these folks spoil it for me. You said that some parents have asked that you return this should make you feel good because obviously they appreciated your talents. Its the same with me Ive been complimented by parents and other leaders for some of the things Ive done so to heck with those bad apples! Most of the other leaders and parents in my Pack are great people and I focus my energies on working with them to improve the program for our boys.


I know it must gall you that the bad-apple Eagle will take this honor and use it as a reference for schools and employers but ultimately if this boy is not a true Eagle it will come out. Poor character and sloth are hard to hide. Thats not a good reflection on the BSA but, like in the Church, for every less than perfect Eagle there are thousands out there that are worthy and that you can feel proud to be associated with.


If you really dont want to go back to your old troop (but your son seems to be able to stick it out with his friends) then take the advice that others have offered here and try to find something scouty to do my Pack is looking for leaders, come on over! Whatever you do dont let one bad experience ruin scouting for you, or anything you enjoy for that matter!


What doesnt kill you only makes you stronger!


I hope this helps. Good luck!







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Thank you for the great advices!


The District folks have been trying to reel me in for the past 7 years to take on bigger roles, but I have successfully put them off ... however, I do help out with training here and there, staffing for events here and there ... nothing full time. If I were to make the offer or they catch wind of my availability, I would be doing the scouting bits again.


I do have a Wolf and I am his den leader. I just don't have the passion that I have had the last 9 years. I would have thought that the Pack would have gotten me excited about scouting again, but instead, a pair of parents there are in the process of ruin it for everyone. The wife is the current CC and she asked our current CM to step down so that her husband can take on the job so that he can get the CM knot! What is so important about knots that one would willing to break the Pack apart?


... and there is the troop where I have missed the most. I missed working with the boys. I missed being there with my two older sons! I missed the comraderees with the other adults.


The two local scout troops caught wind of my "unemployment" offered me their SM position. Three of the parents in the troop tried to convince me to start a new troop. I respectfully declined the offers. I don't want to make it into a case of me vs. the ASM. This is the program for the scout. I don't want to be the adult who ruined it for the boys! Frankly, I just don't feel the magic any more.


30 minutes ago when I went to get the mail. I ran into one of the scouts. He said hi and asked me when I would come back to the troop. He then went on and said that he and a lot of the others missed having me around. That is what really gets to me.


The problem is that coming back into the troop I cannot face the ASM who is the cause of my disenchantment. The problem is that the SM and CC act as if nothing happened. The boy who bullied three other scouts including my son got a simple scoutmaster conference. I cannot go back to a troop that starts to question my eligibility to counsel merit badge outside of the Troop time! When I resigned my ASM position, at the request of several boys and parents, I continued to function as a merit badge counselor. This past February, I did not recharter with the troop (but still registered with BSA on the Pack side). So they question my elgibility. It would have been fine if it is applied across the board (ie. with other parents whose registration with BSA were no longer current as a mb counselor).


Stosh, I have not sweat the small stuffs for a while now. I am the most patient man that one will find. What happened has caused me to lose the meaning of being a scout and what the Scout Oath and Law mean. I just don't know any more.


Bob White, you have quit this Forum twice because people challenged you and twice you came back (welcome back by the way). You are the most "by the book" scouter on this forum. What did you do to get yourself back online ... joining the scouting forum again?


I would love to go into further details about what happened, but let's put it this way, when I tried to talk face-to-face during that fateful troop meeting in November, the man threatened to press charge on me. When that happened, I stopped playing the game! Perhaps, I regretted my outburst that night (which I apologized to each scout personally).


Thank you again for allowing me to confide with you all. I am truly seeking for your advice.


My old time Forum friends, Bob? Barry? Eamonn? Ed? Its Me? Semper? packsaddle? MikeF (my SHAC friend)? Why should I do this again?


YIS(This message has been edited by OneHour)

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Thank you. fyi, I have been reading this Forum since 2001 and started to contribute in 2002. This is the place where I learned and shared.


I have been a Cubmaster for our current Pack when it was 132 boys strong. I have served in every possible position in the Pack. I have served as our Troop ASM for the past 5 years. I turned down the SM position because I wanted to work with the boys! I helped if not recruited and built our Troop from 24 boys to the current 82.


One thing that I won't do this time is to give up my principle.




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Why not test the waters here and there? Not full time for now, but try something new and see if it reignites your passion. Perhaps you will find a niche that engages you.


I think everyones' batteries need recharging once in a while and yours may just be a little lower than usual.



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One Hour,


I truly feel your pain! I find myself in a similiar low spot right now. I don't want to get too specific, but I have been quite despondent the last few weeks. My wife has even STRONGLY recomended I take a sabbatical from Scouting for a while.


The problem is that even though something comes around every once in a while that makes me question why I am in Scouting, the vast majority of the time, I feel lucky to be here. I consistently get far more out of Scouting than I have even thought about putting into it.


My dad was one of those guys who had a cliche for almost everything. As I have gone through the last few weeks, I keep hearing my dad's voice echoing "Tough times never last. Tough people do."


One Hour, take your break if you need. I might just take my wife's "advice" and do the same for a while. But maybe I won't. Whether I do or not, I know that things will brighten, and in a few weeks or a few months, there will be a little guy whose uniform is way too big, his ears will be a little dirty, but his smile will only be matched by his heart, and I will be back to getting way more from Scouting than I will start giving again.


Good luck to you!



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Wow a call out thread!


Reading the black marks you wrote on my white screen I am reading about a guy that really still has the passion but its being blocked by adults. I'm offering a little bit different advice than the others. I say stay away form the adults and find the youths which you seem to connect with. That means running roundtables discussions or adult training sessions will be the death of you.


I would look again at those SM positions. You didn't mention why you didn't take them, just that you didn't. As a SM you know you will get directly involved in the youths. Got a bad adult, pass them along to your CC to handle. You won't get adult free anywhere in scouting, but you can diminish their contact with you. The venture crew idea is another option.


I would not return to that old troop. That's water over the dam.



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Its Me ... it's not a call out thread, but rather ... a reach out thread!


Yes ... I still love my boys in the troop! Of those 82 boys, I personally grew up with 51 of them, a few for 9 years and every one of them since Tigers in our Pack as their Cubmaster! I adopted the other 30 ... they are from the other Pack in the neighborhood!


Many summer camp hours spent talking to some of these homesick boys! Many hours spent working with them on their advancement. I was tough, but they didn't mind!


Why I didn't take the SM job when offered? In our Troop, the SM is too busy to work with the boys. The ASMs work with the boys ... ok, mostly me! For a while, I constantly have to correct the boys and their parents that I am not the Scoutmaster!


I may sound like ... me ... me ... me, but in real life, to the boys and parents, I'm just a happy-go-lucky ASM!


The funny thing that that all that I wanted at the start of this whole fiasco is a simple apology from an Eagle scout to my son!


I guess that if the troop doesn't realize what it has lost, then it has not lost anything!


... it has become my lost!(This message has been edited by OneHour)

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My son and I moved to another Troop about one and a half year ago. I went through a lot of the same feelings when I quit our old Troop. Quiting the old Troop was something that was not something that I wanted to do, but felt pressed back into a corner. As a result of being let down by many adults, my passion for being involved and active in Scouting was nearly lost. I only joined the new Troop as a leader, so I could be active with my son in his last year of Scouting. I had no intention of staying involved and I sure didn't intend to do anything if my son wasn't going to be there. Well, I went to Summer Camp again last year (didn't want to miss my son's last year at camp as a Scout). My son was off doing high adventure stuff, so I followed the first year Scouts off to their First Class Express program to make sure they found their way. I found that the two Camp staffers in charge of the program were overwhelmed with the number of boys, so I volunteered to help them. So, I went with our first year Scouts every day to their program. I found a niche working with those first year Scouts. I am constantly reminded by those Scouts about how much fun we had at camp. They have begged me to go to camp again, and Ive committed to going again this year even though my son will be aging out in May. I plan to do the same thing this year and see about helping with the First Class Express program. Well see how it works.


My passion for doing this Scouting stuff? Its coming back. I see a few boys that just joined that really need the program, and I mean the program the way its supposed to be delivered. I see boys who were brand new Scouts last year that are developing into great leaders. They are beginning to shine in ways that they couldnt without the program. I want to be there to see it, to be a part, to help them develop into the best young men that they possibly can.






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I cannot go back to a troop that starts to question my eligibility to counsel merit badge outside of the Troop time! When I resigned my ASM position, at the request of several boys and parents, I continued to function as a merit badge counselor. This past February, I did not recharter with the troop (but still registered with BSA on the Pack side). So they question my elgibility.Get someone, UC, DE whoever to correct this. You do not have to be a member of the BSA to be a Councilor.


Merit badge councilors do not have to be paid members of BSA or a troop or pack, etc. They must turn in an app but do not pay. That is so members of the community with the needed expertise can work with the boys without any obligation to a troop.

If this is the general attitude of the adults I can see why you wish to not be associated with them. (This message has been edited by firekat)

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Been trying to figure out how to respond for a while. Been there, done that and got the scars. Do not let the b***ds win! You have a connect with the youth of the troop and that is what scouting is all about. If the boys were not there then there is no reason for us to be there. It will be difficult to find a way to coexist, ignore or discount the 'rabble' that has caused your troubles, but a way is there just may take a bit of time or conivery to find it.


As the Eagle thing goes I remember some of the thread about that and I remember thinking at the time some Eagles soar and some flap. (and some parents should just go away) Thats ok, thats life. You have skills that the scouts need to learn and maybe working with them when they are new scouts or second year scouts is the answer. Or maybe working with the cubs and waiting out the ones that have caused this problem to age out is the answer. Just being there will be what the scouts need and if it iratates the adults then that's ok too. The scouts are what this scouting thing is all about. Just do not let those other people win.


Maybe go 'stealth mode', go on overnights, do your thing and help the scouts learn how to be scouts. Let the adults power stucture do their thing and just work with the scouts. Drop the merit badge counselor thing and help prepare the boys to work with another counselor. Kinda a end run thing. ;)


Listen to me and me a Scoutmaster. Anytime you want to go 'stealth' in the troop that I serve let me know. ;) Got a place for ya any time.


soap box broke



red feather

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