That Bloke

You Know, It’s Ok to Talk About It

Men can be closed off dick heads. I'm here to tell you that it's ok to talk about feelings and shit.

I thought that instead of typing up another rant, I'd do something a bit different. I want to share a little anecdote with you.

Around 20 years ago, I joined the British Army; right at the height of the Iraq and Afghan conflicts.

Yeah, I've never been the sharpest tool in the box.

Anyway, Iraq was shit. I lost a couple of friends, more were badly hurt, and I myself suffered a minor shrapnel wound.

It's fair to say that I saw shit out there that no-one should ever see. I finished my tour of Iraq and less than a year later I found myself in Afghanistan.

For me, Afghan was marginally better than Iraq. I won't go into detail as to why as that could reveal who I am, but suffice to say, it wasn't quite as shit as Iraq.

I got back from Afghan and I was fucked. Not physically though. Mentally. The Army might spin this yarn that they give their troops the help they need, but the fact of the matter is, if you went to the "Med Centre" claiming you were having mental health problems, you'd quickly become a laughing stock of the battalion.

You'd be labelled a pussy. A fanny. Not tough enough be a soldier.

Note: This might not be the case anymore. It's been a long time since I served, but that's what it was like then I was serving.

So I didn't get help, and it utterly fucked me. I was having nightmares. I was taking it out on my loved ones. I was all over the show.

Then my (now) wife convinced me to go see a professional to help me process some of this baggage.

I did, and it really helped. Actually, it was one of the best things I've ever done. Do I still have demons? Yes. Do I let them affect my life? For the most part, no.

So, my message to you is - whether you're a soldier, a police officer, a fire fighter, a janitor, an office worker, or anything else - if you have shit going on upstairs, don't let it fester. Go and see someone about it. Someone impartial, who can just listen and help you process that shit.

You can thank me later.

Peace. ✌️

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