I joined the army in 1988 and joined the 4/7 royal dragoon guards,in August 1990 Saddam Hussien invaded Kuwait,i asked to go and was sent as a Battle Causalty Replacement and joined the QRIH as a Challenger tank gunner. On the 24th of february the ground war started in which we saw action and finally ended up on the road to Basra around 5 to 10 mintues after the United States air force had attacked the iraq convoy travelling down the road. Before i saw action i was a happy go lad with out any worries but that changed after the first gulf.
I came out of the army in 1992,and my family noticed a change in me straight away,i was aggresive and drinking and jumping at the slightest noise. The nightmares and flashbacks were most nights and i would have days where i would be in the pits of despair.
I went to see my local Gp who told me that there was nothing wrong with me,a couple of days later i tried to take my own life and when i saw the hospital mental health team they told me i was no danger to myself or anyone else. A couple of years later i tried taking my life again and again told there was nothing wrong with me. I also had bouts of self harm and was using drink and medicines to help me sleep at night which didnt work and ended up taking a knife to bed to protect myself from my nightmares,and on one occasion attacked my girlfriend with a carving knife,then a couple of days later tried to strangle her and the police were called and advised me to move out or be arrested.
I tried to get help from a charity in 2009 and was told there was a 6 month waiting list. I was then introduced to Bob Paxman who ran Talking2minds and after a bad night with a razor blade at my wrist i contacted the charity and they got me on a change course in oct 2009 in France. We were introduced to Mick who talked us through the treatment and i still didnt beleive that it would work. After day 1 of treatment it had started working and i got my first full nights sleep in 18 years,and after day 4 of the treatment i was free of my Ptsd. 9 months have passed since i went to france and life gets better and im calmer,more settled and the syptoms of Ptsd have gone. Without the help of talking2minds it is more than likely that i would have taken my own life.