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Police Officer with PTSD

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by APB, Apr 2, 2007.

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  1. APB

    APB New Member

    Hello to all,

    I have been living with PTSD for 13 years. I was in the Air Force Security Police. Responded to a call of shots fired at our base hospital. A guy shot two doctors who had recommended his discharge from the Air Force for mental illness. He continued through the hospital and ended up killing 5 and seriously wounded 21 others. I met up with him outside the hospital, he refused to drop his weapon and continued firing at people. I shot and killed him.
    I feel troubled by the loss of life that occurred that day, prior to my arrival.
    I was not debriefed after the incident. When I did seek help through military mental health facility, two years later, they took my weapon from me. That demoralized me, so I stopped treatment, said I was fine and went back to work.
    So 5 years later my symptoms of anxiety, irritability and depression got bad enough that I sought a medical discharge, before I got in trouble by loosing my temper on duty.
    I have tried many treatment through the years. Medications, including self medication with beer. I have had counseling, hypnotherapy, accupunture, herbs, aromatherapy, meditation. Not finding anything that helps much. I know I need to exercise more and I am working on it.

    I have alot of guilt, I have a wife and two kids. My wife was very supportive at first, she is now tired of my anxiety, irritability and negative outlook on life. I am scared that my son, who is four, is getting traumatized. I loose my temper and yell at him on bad days. I always appologise, but there is no excuse.
    I am considering going back on meds. I wish I could find one that does not have bad side effects.

    I will keep in touch, and will be a frequent lurker.

    pd117 likes this.
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  3. anthony

    anthony Silently Watching Founder

    Hi Andy, welcome to the forum. Its never a nice thing to witness death, let alone pull the trigger. Its great you found us, and I hope we can help you as a community as much as it has already helped many, and continues to do so. Look forward to reading your posts Andy, and chatting with you on the forum.
  4. willing

    willing Active Member

    Yep, Andy glad you're here. What a horrible experience. You are caring about your family and that is a good place to start. We have to help ourselves before we can help others. We have to be willing to go to any length. You sound like you're getting close! You will be amazed the good that will be instore for you now that you are surrendering. Chemical imbalances remember not so much mental illness. That is how I look at it and then I work on the thinking with a therapist.
    Good Luck,
  5. Marlene

    Marlene I'm a VIP Premium Member

    Welcome to the forum, Andy.
  6. cookie

    cookie I'm a VIP

    hey andy, welcome to the forum. i can't imagine being in your shoes. you will find help here.
  7. moki

    moki Guest

    Hi apb,
    I admire anyone, including you, who goes into these professions where violence can occur on any given day. I wish there was so much more that these institutions would do to help you process all of the violence. When I think of all of the violence that goes on in the world, it is staggering to think of how many people's lives are affected by ptsd.

    And it never ends with the person who has it...it affects lives around you - which is why I wish trauma counseling/treatment was a huge priority in this world.

    Keep looking for answers.
  8. APB

    APB New Member

    Thanks for the replies.

    I am not giving up, I really want to be happy and healthy again. This incident happened when I was 24 and single. In the military away from family. I did not have negative thoughts at the time and did not want to talk about it. If I wanted to talk to anyone I could not. My Law Enforcement co workers just thought it was cool that I got to shoot someone. When I did start to have negative symptoms I kept them inside because I was supposed to be tougher than that, John Wayne doesn't cry! I got out of the military when I was 29. I met my wife and have two kids. Now that I have brought them into my hole, I really need to find a way out. I am withdrawn, distant, negative and bitter. But I am intent on getting better.

    Thanks again for responding and being here.

  9. mouse

    mouse Well-Known Member

    Welcometo the forum, you will find others here with similaryet different life experiences, hope they can helpyoou find peace
  10. porkyrees

    porkyrees Member

    Andy hang on to that wife of yours and take your meds Ive been on them know for 7 years and i cannot function properly without them no side effects either A couple of minor rashes.At one stage in my life I could have been that man you shot.Porky Rees
  11. officerx

    officerx New Member


    Welcome to the forum. I am also a former police officer.

  12. APB

    APB New Member

    Hello X,
    Thanks for checking in. I know there are alot of Law Enforcement personel with Traumatic stress. I hope we can find relief here together.

    Stay Safe

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