Alcoholism and DV

Discussion in 'Int Corps' started by abominable_pirate, Apr 21, 2007.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. I'm currently in the process of applying to join 3MI. Whilst my drinking habits are not at the level of the major alcoholic, they have nonetheless got to the stage where I feel that joining AA is the best course of action. What I'd like to know is if this is going to destroy my chances of getting DV clearance, or cause significant problems, and is there anything that could be done to remedy this? If this can't be answered in open forum, could I please be contacted by PM?

    EDITS: Clarification and re-phrasing.
  2. AP

    Thanks for taking the time to post. Over the past 30 years I have lived, worked and been to war with with a number of individuals who have had varying levels of alchohol dependency.

    From a personal perspective an individual with any form of alchohol dependecy is going to be typecast as someone who is unreliable and possibly unable to function properly without a drink. Even if they can function proerly there is always going to be a thought in the back of their supervisor and peers mind that their judgement could be impaired.

    In 3 MI Bn you are going to find yourself in an environment were firearms and live ammuntiotion are close at hand. It gets worse: there could be a desparate and determined enemy as well. You might be required to shoot, more likley you could be required to drive evasively and safely to extract from a situation.

    In such circumstancs, your comrades in arms will not want to be second guessing how you will perform, possibly even spending time keeping an eye on you, when their attention should be elsewhere.

    IMHO the DV is a secondary issue, if you are in the TA already, you need to have a long hard think about what you are going to do.

    Living in close proximity, even for a few days, your comrades will find you out, you will inevitably loose the respect of some, others will modify their behavious and procedures to work with you.

    At some stage the system will break.

    You know that much of Army life revolves around the social context, there is always gpoing to be drink at hand.

    My advice: you need to sort the problem out first, as opposed to placing a greater problem in the hands of 3 MI and those they work with on operations.
  3. Ok, to everyone who has sent me PMs, thank you. Blunt though they may be, I appreciate the honesty.

    To clear one thing up though, my drinking does not come as a result of pressure. When I have been under any one of the first things I have always done is stopped drinking. I drink when I am bored, or am in a relaxed social environment, but simlpy cannot moderate the amount I take in. When I am under pressure my mind is sufficiently occupied that I do not want to drink. I am at university and in an URNU at the moment, as well as being in several musical theatre companies, and an expert skiier, and when under greater pressure (something I enjoy), be that a show deadline approaching, at sea, skiing, or with several essays on at once, this is when I am in my element, and the desire to drink does not exist. In terms of being on operations or in training, I do not think that this would be so much of an issue, as the pressures of the job (even during the downtime, or the boring stuff) would be enough to keep me off the booze.
  4. was that when you applied to join 3 MI? :)

    seriously... you might not like the answers you've received, but do you honestly think you're a good proposition right now? you only posted this at 1am this morning.

    my advice is exactly as you've been advised already - sort the drinking first, then apply. nobody is likely to actively recruit welfare cases.
  5. You're right about everything except the joining 3MI being rock bottom. That was just one of the warning signs :p

    I was more interested in knowing what the score would be long-term as well as short term. I know that for the immediate future/next few months I should not join, but my question was more out of an interest in knowing that if I decided to join (either as a regular or a territorial) in, let's say a year, two years, five years, and had been sober that entire time, would it still be a serious problem in the screening/vetting process?
  6. Double-post I know, but an update of sorts.

    Having read everything that people have PM'ed me and said on this thread (thank you all for the help), and the information that others have given me, I've decided that AA is probably a bit extreme, and possibly inappropriate for my situtation. I have informed a number of close friends and my family, and will be giving up drink alltogether. Their support, and my desire not to let them down, will hopefully be enough to keep me going through all this. I called AA and spoke to them, and they're sending me that big book of alcoholism, but that's probably as far as I'll need to take it. Should I slip however I'll give them a go. I'm also going to book time with a counsellor to talk things through, to ensure that I have some professional advice.

    Thanks to all who've posted and PM'ed. Some of the stuff has been really great, and if anyone else has any advice I'm still keen to hear it.
  7. Sounds like you are well on the way to cracking your problem by acknowledging it; good luck.
  8. It seems that most of the replys you have had concern your drink issues so this one conerns the DV process.

    Most people have skeletons in the closet and service people are no different. The worst thing you can do on a DV interview is to lie. If you have 'issues' then admit to them because if the system is aware of them you cannot by definition be blackmailed. I myself and many of my mates are DV cleared and we have all admitted things that would make a priest blush, the key issue being that we are honest people who are aware of our flaws. If you are such a person then there is no reason why you cannot get through the DV process.

    As to the drink issue let me offer some advice. Cutting out drink is not the best option as it is the other side of the same coin. The real trick is to learn to moderate and mitigate behaviours that we wish to change. Whatever you do, good luck.
  9. I'll drink to that!
  10. [​IMG]

    abominable_pirate I'm sure you will be welcomed with open arms. There's nothing Anonymous about this lot
  11. With DV you have to be upfront about everything, there not bothered so much by personal issues as long as you reveal them, in saying that if they feel a problem may leave you vulnerable they may turn you down.

    One of my colleagues is a pagan white witch it took 8 hours of interviews to sort that one out.

    Another colleague is a nazi pazergrenader in a battle reanactment group.

    me i'm normal, i told my interviewer that i had looked at porn on the internet this made him look up, he asksed what sort i told him just normal girl on girl.

    we all got through so your chances are as good as the rest of us dysfunctional people :p
  12. Knobhead...

    I'm always drunk, the exception to everyone else you see?
  13. :roll: well sod telling him the truth :roll:

    :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
  14. :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:

    that's how ya do it!
  15. Many people like a few beers, and we all know people who like a lot. Its easy getting holier than thou, and castigating those who frequently turn up with smelly breath through beer, but isn't that a sign of character and professionalism, in that you can go out for a few beers / get slaughtered to a greater or lesser extent with your mates (as is an army tradition, no less), then fight through it in the morning. One alternative is for us to end up like the americans who are so PC they cannot operated unless in clinical environments.

    Is it also a sign for many that we are over committed, overworked and liable to an excessive amount of individual stress. In barracks, doing 12 hour days knocking out staff work for people who really should do it themselves, then going back to the Mess, boredom, and the Bar. Many, like myself, have have elected that your family, who have followed us around enough postings to get to the point of breakdown, deserve a chance of stability. To make this happen and having chosen to buy a house many hours drive away and to put yourself in the Mess to only see them at weekends. I have had DV for 21 years, and have been a heavy drinker for most of this time. I have always managed to get into work on time, have always passed my fitness tests, and have had no fallout, except for a bit of blue breath in the mornings.

    And for the record, I have always lied at DV interviews. It's too late to get me now though!

    I am now going back to the Mess for my dinner, when the bar opens I will be first in, getting wrecked, cheers!