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Should I make a claim?

Hiraeth

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I agreed to a Comprehensive Psychological Assessment in June 2021, after being engaged in Psychotherapeutic Intervention since 2019. My MSW/RSW observed trauma-like symptoms during treatment and requested I rule-out an Operational Stress Injury (OSI) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTDS). Anything to find out why I’m the way I am. Short story, I have seen or been involved with lots of trauma situations over my years (if one calls it that) from exercise, tours, etc. When I came back from Afghanistan 2007, I had numerous suicidal thoughts and came close to committing suicide a few times throughout the years – I write this as tears flow down my face, realizing what my family would have been put through. Over the years a few friends had mentioned that they thought I have PTSD, which I laughed off - because I had all my limbs, wasn’t disabled and never had any signs your supposed to have (along with nothing trusting the Medical System). In 2019 I was posted to Ottawa on IR. It was a long drive back and forth from home on the weekends and it was during these long drives where my suicidal thoughts were triggered and were becoming stronger each time. Then out of the blue I get a call form a Social Worker who reviewed my files from the last 10 plus years and realized that I was crying out for help - a call that I truly believed saved my life!

During decompression in 2008 in Cyprus, I mentioned my thoughts to one of the “Health Workers” but, was told time will take care of - somewhere along these lines. Over the years I realized that my friends and work kept me together (I didn’t want to leave work - leaving work meant I had time to think – time where bad thoughts crept into my mind). I physically wrote that I had suicide thoughts during an Afghanistan survey about members being over there in 2012, and mentioned in private my thoughts of suicide but nothing happened - even when I wrote it on this survey (no evidence of this survey exists that I know of). Over the next 10 years I went to see Health Official numerous times to see if I had PTSD (very hard to do being a man, a husband, father, son, supervisor) because I couldn’t sleep, was paranoid, angered or frustrated, fighting with my wife and kids over anything (this I only found out about 2 years ago telling my wife, because she suspected I was having an affair but, I was secretly talking with my SW or was meeting with them in person after 1 year once I gained their trust). I built up the courage years later to talk with a Social Worker of my thoughts, etc. and was told that I’m normal and had no issues! As time went on, I had a few melt downs at work (which no one asked how I was, maybe they didn’t know what to do), I’ve also dealt with finding two friends who committed suicide which put me through emotional distress. I would speak to Health Officials over the years silently calling out for help but, trying to pretend that members under me had these issues and what could I do to help them. I could write a book on what I went through over the years but, I’m not here for sympathy. I just want to ensure when I retire that I have access to the health system and especially if my well-being ever becomes worse.

I received and reviewed my Comprehensive Psychological Assessment in June 2021, but was not 100% in agreement with it - maybe I’m in denial or maybe because I was in a good mood that day. This assessment was based on things affecting me for the last month - a time when another military friend committed suicide and a friend recently died in a motorcycle accident. I never fit the profile I believe this assessment was looking for, being late, shakes, memory loss, wife abuse, alcohol abuse, etc. (things I went through when I got back from Afghanistan but didn’t know until my wife mentioned it about 1 year later after this assessment. My wife also asked why they never reached out to her, she was there when all the bad stuff happened and was still happening). My issues start when I go to bed (hard to do an assessment on) and during the night being woken up by demons not, during the day. Yes, suicide thoughts pop up and are gone in a second. There’s times were I’m zoning out, constantly being hyper vigilant and times where I’m the funniest person in the room - humour which I realized I’ve been hiding behind for all these years. I’ve gotten better in the last years, learnt to use the tools given but, still have a few moments where I’m in a state of panic. I have changed my MSW/RSW back in November because I believe I went as far as I could with that person, and thought seeing a different person could maybe help me find what other unknown issues are hidden.

My results are as follows: member indicates a strong tendency towards self-disclosure. On the basis of the test sat, it may be assumed that he is experiencing a severe mental disorder. The results of the assessment suggest a moderate degree of pathology characterizing his personality organization. Episodes suggestive of a Major Depressive Disorder appear to be afflicting him. He is experiencing a Generalized Anxiety Disorder. He may be experiencing brief periods of Hypomanic excitement. He may exhibit short spells of physical hyperactivity as well (e.g., restless pursuit of multiple activities). He is experiencing significant Depressive Symptomatology at the mild-moderate level of severity. Plus numerous other things.

The final paragraph of this assessment: DSM 5 Diagnosis – 309.89 (F43.8) DSM 5 Diagnosis – 309.89 (F43.8) Other Specified Trauma-and Stressor-Related Disorder. 1. Rule out PTSD. 2. Rule out Generalized Anxiety Disorder. There is where I’m confused because in this assessment it seems that I have this and that. Based on the test result and clinical interview, it says I meet the DSM-5 Criteria for Other Specified-and-Stressor-Related Disorder. So do I waste my time doing a VAC - which I have no idea to do or trust the system that I can have access to a Health Profession when I retire in a few years?
 

brihard

Army.ca Legend
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It sounds like your life is a lot harder, in a medically diagnosable way, because of events that occurred in your service. I think it's absolutely appropriate to bring a claim to VAC. That's what VAC benefits exist for- to compensate for pain and suffering and lose career growth because of disabilities caused during your service.
 
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