Very negative feelings over impending tour

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by NikNik, Jan 16, 2012.

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  1. Hi there

    First of all can I say that I know there will be many people who slate me for this post and I appreciate what I am about to say could be classed as an excuse for my other half to not go on tour but I'm posting in the hope that there may be somebody out there who appreciates our dilemma.

    My OH has served over 8 years after joining at 16. He has been on many operations including Iraq which he returned from having had a bad tour when they were continually mortared in the tents at the Shaat Hotel. He like many others suffered with nightmares, flashbacks and was afraid to sleep in the dark or of any loud noises. He was diagnosed with PTSD some time later and received treatment for a while afterwards. To this day he is still not 100% right but after seeking a further appointment he was questioned as to whether he wanted further treatment to enable him to claim compensation through SPVA. He ignored my advice to put in a formal complaint and to this day, he continues to deal with his issues in his own way.

    He has now been told of an impending tour to Afghan later this year which we knew was coming up but as soon as he told me he said he had an uneasy feeling. When drunk he has often mentioned that he feels the army "will be the end of him". This is going to sound totally crazy but here goes anyway. My partner has this knack to know things and see things before they happen. Mad as it sounds, let me give you some examples.....

    Whilst on R n R from Iraq, one morning first thing he sat bolt upright in bed and said he just knew his friend had been killed (he said his name but I obviously wont), and following that he couldnt sleep. The next day he heard through the rumour channels that his pal had indeed been killed on tour. This said friend had actually signed off but was doing an extended tour at the request of his regiment. He also used to phone back to his unit and was known to have told people that he didn't feel he would be coming back alive from tour. Read into this what you will but I tell it as it has been told to me and I was there when my other half woke in a sweat knowing something terrible had happened.

    Another example, in a hotel just before his going away when at 5 in the morning we were messing around as you do and he started pretending to have some kind of fit. We both laughed it off and fell to sleep. We were then woken up around 9am by his dad telling us they had had to get his family dog put to sleep as they could not stop him fitting at 5 in the morning!

    I know it sounds too much like coincidence but there are many more things that happen which are in no way explainable. He sat on a phone in Belize once and described how I was sitting in the dark, the book I was reading and even told me what colour socks I was wearing! Freaky stuff which I have learnt to listen to now as it seems to happen or come true in time. We also have a little girl who is 2 and who seems to have developed the same 'gift' as him. Recently on a trip to London she told us that two cars had crashed. No more than a few minutes later we were caught up in traffic and eventually passed two cars which had been involved in a head on collision! She knows when someone is about to knock on the door and she senses things all the time.

    The dilemma we are caught in now is that my partner has an overwhelming feeling that he will not come back the same person if he goes on tour. I have had the same doomed feeling since he mentioned going and I could not narrow it down as I have been through many many op tours and never felt like this but I have had really vivid dreams of visiting him in hospital when he is close to death and missing limbs. In my heart I feel devestated when I think about him going to Afghan and I have tried to not share my concerns but it got so difficult recently that I had to tell him how I felt. I should add that as he told me his job would involve being kept in camp and not taking part in any patrols etc, I felt as though I was worrying for nothing. After telling him my fears, and after lots of arguemnts and tensions in the house, he explained that he felt the exact same thing. He then went on to tell me that he has in fact been assigned to be a part of the counter IED Force. I don't know what this job would entail but it's making the alarm bells ring even more loudly.

    My partner feels strongly enough about this impending tour (and so do I) to sign off and end his career to avoid going. Civvy street does not hold many prospects at the moment and as we have our own house, we have no idea how we will cope but given the alternative which I have dreamt about and which haunts us both, he feels as though he has no choice. He has tried speaking to the chain of command today who has told him that they think his fears may relate to the PTSD he still suffers from and this person believes signing off at this point in his career is the worst idea he can have. The problem my OH has is how on earth do you explain these 'feelings'? How can you explain that you just know you're going to be injured or even worse on tour? It sounds crazy to me even when I think about it but I cannot ignore all of the things that have happened and come true in the past and believe me there have been so many.

    I don't even know what I hoped to achieve by posting this thread other than maybe to rant in the hope that someone has something positive to say about the whole experience we are going through.

    Anyway, long story over. I shall leave my mental rambling down to you to decipher lol.

    Happy Monday,

  2. Maybe a transfer to another part of the army :S all the best you and your other half.
  3. If your partner is already formally warned for ops then I'm afraid he'll have to go regardless of feelings. Is his chain of command aware of his PTSD history and his sense of pending doom? If not, are they approachable? GIven he's to be a part of the C-IED Task Force then it's unlikely they'll allow him to stand down from the deployment or indeed any operational tasks that his employment may entail. On that note, is he an IED specialist or another trade attached to the C-IED TF?

    If it is opinion that you are requesting then mine is that he should leave the Army. If he feels so strongly about not deploying then he is in the wrong line of work, it's what we do in the Army and so he should leave. Furthermore, if the stresses of his job are having a negative effect on your relationship then that's another, and perhaps more important, reason for getting out. He's done 8 yrs, be proud of that and take that pride with him.
    • Like Like x 8
  4. His "feelings" weren't that great or he would have known this tour was coming. If he was unable to tour he should have got help, not waited and panicked as a tour comes around. How is the bloke who has to replace him going to feel, knowing the reasons he pulled out? I thought you couldn't sign off when warned off for a tour anyway, but I'm prepared to be proven wrong on that.
  5. I don't know if that would be an option. He's an armourer.

    Thanks x
  6. Forastero

    Forastero LE Moderator

    A gentle warning for all about to post, don't turn this thread into a slanging match or any other match for that matter.

  7. Bowmore_Assassin

    Bowmore_Assassin LE Moderator Book Reviewer

    If he is officially being medically treated for PTSD, I am very surprised he is being deployed on an op tour; he should be medically (temporary or otherwise) downgraded at the moment and ineligible for deployment but this is a chain of command issue I conjunction with his doctor.

    He may wish to talk to the charity Combat Stress who are well used to dealing with individuals suffering from PTSD.

    As for volunteering to leave, that might be his best call if he feels so strongly about this but he might want to talk to the RCMO and unit Padre about the various factors leading to this decision.

    Whilst you state, "Civvy street does not hold many prospects at the moment, " and I do not know your half's skill sets, all of the personnel I know who have left the Army voluntarily have done ok to well, regardless of rank. If he is going to go, he needs to figure out what he wants to do in civdiv and start working towards it now. As a thought, is he eligible for redundancy - might be worth considering.

    On my last deployment, prior to going, a Sgt came to see me and said he was not up to deploying due to PTSD, gave me permission to speak to his Psych and we all dealt with the issue in a mature, fully informed and educated manner. You should have confidence in the chain of command that the same can be done here...
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Nik

    I strongly advise that he seeks help from the medical staff/chain of command. If he does deploy in the state of mind you describe he could be putting lives of his muckers at risk. His CoC need to seriously look at this, but it is upto him to make the first step.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Thanks for the reply. First of all I should point out that he is not afraid to deploy as he has done so many times. Nor is he trying to shirk his responsibilities as a soldier, as he has put 100% into everything that has been asked of him in his career. Last week he went to Scotland with only 3 days notice, despite the fact that I have just come out of hospital and needed him here to help. I guess I am trying to say he would never dream of getting out of anything be it a tour, exercise, ranges or even AT. The feelings he has are only regarding this tour and as I said previously I have learnt in my time with him to listen to what he feels and says.

    He has not been formally warned for tour yet and I have no idea when that is likely to happen as he's due out in September I believe. He is an Armourer attached to the Counter IED task force so I have no idea whether standing down is an option but I guess I was hoping someone on here may have some idea of options he could pursue. The army is all he has ever wanted to do so any decision he makes is not going to be done lightly. Also I should point out that he fought to be made deployable again after being downgraded for the PTSD so again I hope this proves he is no way trying to get out of a tour but merely listening to his heart.

    Thanks anyway.
  10. As an armourer (although I'm probably about to be shouted down) I think it's unlikely he'll deploy out on C-IED TF patrols/tasks and so will be as safe as anyone who works from the Armourer Shop? Perhaps those REME's out there may be able to put this lady's concerns to rest?

    Move to REME threads???

    As for his run out date (ROD) of Sep 12, it would be very unusual for him to be deployed during his resettlement, especially if he gets on with planning some resettlement courses now for that period. Resettlement is an entitlement and only in rare situations would post-discharge resettlement authority be granted. I think this is probably the preferred course of action in this cae???

    UP to you of course but good luck with it all.
  11. He's done anything but panic about a tour coming up. If you read my original post you'd have seen that some time after he was signed off by the psych team who said he was 'fine' he was told by his c of c to return as they saw potential problems with him. On referral he was accused to returning to them so that he could claim compensation through SPVA. Given how difficult it was for him to seek help in the first place and that the army totally stitched him up at the time (he came back from theatre to be posted straight away with no post tour leave and no time to wind down with his mates around him, posted three hours away from home) I believe he did extremely well to manage as well as he did, taking on the job of someone two ranks higher with no additional pay but plenty of additional stress. All of which I believe added to any problems he had.

    You seriously couldn't meet a nicer man than my OH, to the point where I would say there's nothing 'squaddie' about him so the thought of someone else taking his place will be playing on his mind more than anything. I should also add that the job he will be doing out there was originally someone elses job but for reasons I can't/shouldn't go into, my OH has been dicked for it.
  12. Is it possible you are reading more doom and gloom into what he is saying, than what he is actually trying to convey, hope that makes sense. THINGS will always happen out there, so people predicting bad events will usually be right, and can manipulate any bad occurrence, into their spooky prediction.

    Oh, and can you ask your hubby and daughter for this weeks lottery numbers.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Hi, and thanks for the reply. He was originally going to be based in the armourer's shop, however he has now been assigned as a driver with the C-IED force. I think there is more to it but that's what I've been told. The bloke supposed to have been doing it lost his FMT100 and my other half is the next in line with there only being 2 armourers in the regiment. I too have questioned why he would work with such a taskforce but apparently whatever job he is doing, is an armourers job. September 2012 is the tour date and I have no idea how far in advance he is likely to be officially warned off for tour but I am guessing he has very little time to make up his mind.

    Also not sure what if any resettlement he will be ebtitiled to given that hes been in 8 years. In an ideal world he would request a posting to avoid this tour with a view to continuing his career but its far from being an ideal world!
  14. I hear what you say as I've thought this myself but when it comes down to it, is it really a risk worth taking? Imagine if I watch him go on tour knowing how he feels and something does happen to him. I know he would go if I told him that we are both worrying over nothing. Plus he's constantly worried about money so the money accrued on tour is an excuse he uses for going all the time. Believe me we have both tried to shake off the doom and gloom but its still very much there and getting stronger every day and he still has 8 or nine months to push until its happening so it isn't a case of last minute nerves or panic.

    Tried the lottery numbers last week. She chose 16 three times!!! Clearly we are not meant to be rich!
  15. I've misunderstood the Sep 12 date!!! I read it as that was his end of service when you said "leaving"'s his deployment date isn't it?? Apologies...

    Also ignore the PM in that case!!