I am a writing student with the Open University and am researching a piece on a soldier who has been declared unfit for duty due to mental health difficulties. This story is taken from the personal experience of an older family member - this person does not wish to speak about the incident directly, though he is ok with me writing about it.

My relative's experience was several years ago (though I have updated it to modern day) and I do not know the details of his discharge. I am unable to find any information on discharge from the British Army on the internet. I would be grateful if anyone could point me in the right direction. I specifically need to know whether a soldier who was taken mentally ill in the field would be permanently discharged or would be declared 'unfit for service'. If declared unfit, does this prevent them receiving any rights, e.g. pension, etc.? Also, would a soldier be given any medical help on his return to the UK (though i suspect i already know the answer to that question).

Many thanks,

charley171 wrote said:
Also, would a soldier be given any medical help on his return to the UK (though i suspect i already know the answer to that question).
What do you mean by that?

I wouldn't expect too much help, we are pretty suspicious about 'writers' motives, more so given your post tally.
try asking the RBL, combat stress, SAAFA....

I did not mean to cause offence and I can understand your wariness. My interest is genuine: I grew up surrounded by memories of the war and its effects - my Dad served and both my grandfathers saw combat. It is difficult for me as I do not wish to give away too much info about my family member but I do know that this person got no help from the army or the state on returning to the UK, though this was over 20 years ago. I myself witnessed the impact that combat had on him. It is that which has made me want to write about this, not just a random curiousity.

Sorry but I don't know what you mean about the 'post tally'?

Many thanks for the pointer to SSAFA - I will follow that up.

Again I am sorry if my post caused offence. if you tell me what the 'post tally' is, I will try to remove it.

Many thanks for this, and to those who responded privately.

I read the articles you referred me to. I knew that returning soldiers weren't getting the help they needed but this is appalling - I can't believe how institutionalised this became.

I watched my family member go through hell and there seemed to be no help available from the state or the army. NHS treatment is unreliable and intermittent, and private treatment is expensive and most doctors have no experience of combat stress. We finally got help via another source, but it was not easy to find.

Many thanks again to all who responded.

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