I have been considering re-enlisting in the Army (if indeed that will be possible) for a long time. The dilema I have is this: A number of years ago I joined up as an infantry soldier, completed recruit training, went to battalion, everything going very well for me but then f*cked it all up by going absent without leave after about two years in. I don't want to go into too much detail about why as it really doesn't matter.... I comitted a crime under military law, irrelevant of the circumstances. I am ashamed to admit that as a result of the situation I was in and the problems that I created for myself and others I fell into a spiral of depression. When I did finally return to my battalion I was referred to a psychiatric ward for treatment. They decided I should be medically discharged which I was. My own view is that their decision was partly based on the situation at home rather than simply on my state of mind. I know that people will make their own judgements about my character but all I can say is that by no means was my behaviour usual. Up until all of this happened I was a keen young soldier, happy with my lot, fitted in with my platoon, stable in my behaviour and often praised by other lads, NCO's and officers. More than one person commented afterwards that I was the last person they'd expect this from. This has been eating away at me for a long time. I want a new start and a chance to redeem myself but I know that if my application was successful there could be problems because of my past. The last thing I would want is to put anyone in a position where they were forced to accept an individual who they felt they could not rely upon. As a Junior or Senior NCO would you judge an individual before knowing them and knowing all the facts and would you be able to accept them on the merit of how they perform? If I do apply to re-enlist is this likely to cause a problem? I would really appreciate some constructive views as it's important to me to know how my application is likely to affect others.