Mental Health in the RN

#1
Hey guys,

Now I know this is a weird topic in the forces, so I’ll make this brief.

Now I’m not one to self diagnose, but I feel that recently I’ve been struggling with my mental health. Nothing in comparison to a lot of people out there, but I suspect the problems are still there.

I leave for basic next month and I’m worried if I seek out help for this that it will hinder not only my application, but my actual career as well.

As I said, my issues aren’t bad as I know a lot of people have it worse, but I’m just wondering what would actually happen if I was to seek out help. If anyone could shine some light on this, it would be extremely helpful.

Thanks guys!


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#2
If you think you need help, I suggest seeking it for your own wellbeing.

Problem is come week 3 (possibly 4) in basic training you'll be given a rifle with live rounds and all the motive in the world...

Basic training is designed to be a stressful and demanding time, if you're battling your own mind and everything else you will be setting yourself up for failure: possibly making things much worse.

The Navy are likely to want a conclusion to your mental health assessment before you're allowed in due to the above.

However only you can make the decision to seek help or not.

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#3
What aspect, exactly, do you feel you're suffering from..depression..anxiety..self-confidence?

Mental health is a broad spectrum
 
#4
What aspect, exactly, do you feel you're suffering from..depression..anxiety..self-confidence?

Mental health is a broad spectrum
If I had to put a label on it I would have to say anxiety.

As I said a lot of people have it worse than me, I just feel I should address the problem. I’m a “get on with it” kind of guy, so I’m more than confident I’ll be able to smash training, even with a bit of difficulty.


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#5
If you think you need help, I suggest seeking it for your own wellbeing.

Problem is come week 3 (possibly 4) in basic training you'll be given a rifle with live rounds and all the motive in the world...

Basic training is designed to be a stressful and demanding time, if you're battling your own mind and everything else you will be setting yourself up for failure: possibly making things much worse.

The Navy are likely to want a conclusion to your mental health assessment before you're allowed in due to the above.

However only you can make the decision to seek help or not.

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I see where you’re coming from. Although I’m more than sure I’m not suffering from any sort of ailment where as I think I’d be a danger to anyone else. I think I’d just like to address the problem and get a professional opining instead of thinking “what the **** is wrong with me?!” at times, you know what I mean?

In my opinion, everyone suffers from some sort of mental illness at some point in their lives, and to be honest, it’s not such a big deal to me. I just wouldn’t mind a bit of support if I need it(I’ve done without it so far) during basic or even during my career.

Thank you for the reply nonetheless.


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Sumo

War Hero
#6
@Classf0 is this issue a long running issue or more likely to be tied to the nerves of joining the RN. Some take it in their stride, some over think everything, how good will I be, will I be good enough, what happens if I fail etc. Instead of facing every new challenge head on and at face value. Over think every think will do you no harm but could make you a nervous wreck?
 
#7
@Classf0 is this issue a long running issue or more likely to be tied to the nerves of joining the RN. Some take it in their stride, some over think everything, how good will I be, will I be good enough, what happens if I fail etc. Instead of facing every new challenge head on and at face value. Over think every think will do you no harm but could make you a nervous wreck?
I think it’s more tied to past experiences. It’s not nerves. I have competed in MMA and Boxing at an amateur level, so I’m not a nervous person. It doesn’t really bother me on a day to day basis, I’m just wondering if there would be support if I needed it after phase 2? Will it affect my career?

A friend of mine who was in the army for 6 years, suffered from anxiety, and not even badly. He seeked out support and he got it, but unfortunately due to the “severity” of it he had to leave on medical grounds. This is why I’m asking these questions!

Thanks for the reply Sumo.


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Sumo

War Hero
#8
If you have that level of deep concern speak to your AFCO/GP and see what they think or what advice they give, being open and honest is always the best bet, asking for a change of entry date, and sorting out you concerns, may be better that trying to wing it and crash and burn?
Good luck.
@Ninja_Stoker any insider advice you can think of?
 
#9
Most people are "anxious" during Phase 1 and 2, that's why there's the Bish on site for this very reason, plus family welfare. Also your instructors have to complete courses (called Train the Trainer) before they start.

I had to do them when I was a Divisional Officer at Raleigh, modules on the course include Care of Trainees, Coaching and Mentoring and Care of Distressed Trainees, so Raleigh are used to this (as are Phase 2 establishments) and there's plenty of support if you need it.
 
#10
Phase 1 training can be very challenging even to the most capable of individuals. You will be doing things you never thought possible with very tight deadlines which seem impossible with limited facilities. Whilst there is support, you might find that your "self diagnosis" is correct. You may find yourself on the wrong side of what is acceptable with regards to the medical criteria. Do you really want to put yourself and others at risk.......
 
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Ninja_Stoker

War Hero
Moderator
#11
From a purely pragmatic angle, whilst not wishing in any way to come across officious or unhelpful, the primary concern is for the wellbeing of the individual and those working with and alongside that person....

If anyone knowingly joins with a pre-existing medical condition that comes to light during training then, for their own safety and everyone else's they will be removed from training and most likely medically discharged if it comes about during training and they cannot continue. The way to look at it is to imagine that if a person joined with a physical injury, for example a broken leg, then they clearly cannot complete training because it simply isn't going to get better undergoing the physical demands during the rigours of training.

If a person were to subsequently break that leg after successfully completing training, then the employer has a duty of care to treat and rehabilitate that individual.

Physical injuries and mental health issues are treated broadly the same in this respect, so much as I'd tell a person with a seemingly minor sprained ankle to defer entry and get it sorted now, rather than face a medical discharge when it almost certainly gets worse, the advice is the same.

In my experience, although people do become anxious and a little nervous before joining, in the main they aren't sufficiently concerned enough to categorise it as a mental health issue.

The Navy's been around for many years, it can wait. The priority is your health.

See it, say it. sorted.
 

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