Leaving the Armed Forces can be extremely challenging, research shows that those who have left Her Majesty's Armed Forces although very highly trained, struggle accepting that they may need help/support and struggle even more to ask for it. Issue's they can face include: Depression, Survival Guilt, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Homelessness, Gambling addiction, Alcoholism, Drug Addiction, Suicidal Tendencies or just settling back into Civvy Street.
Veterans may not even realise that the very attributes and behaviours that kept them and their battle buddies alive don't transfer onto civvy street and they can find themselves in Her Majesty's Prisons. These can be things like Domestic Abuse, Domestic Violence, Sexual Harassment in the workplace and so on.
For years, I have worked for Veteran Charities including supporting Veterans within the Criminal Justice System, it has infuriated me how Veterans can be treated in their time of need, It equally infuriates me when I am attending yet another funeral from a Veteran committing suicide.
I can empathise and relate with what Veterans go through as I am also Front Line War Veteran myself and have danced with the devil numerous times.
I am still fighting the fight and have turned my negative experiences into positive lessons.
I will never put anyone's picture in the public eye or use them as a case study to obtain further funding.
I have the personal and professional experience, a BA (Hons) degree in Counselling and a proven track record.
Youngest sibling of 4, dragged up on a council estate in the North East of England, left school with no qualifications due to being a somewhat troubled youngster let’s just say, so I joined the British Army for all the usual reasons, Queen and Country, Career, but also as many of us do I joined in order to get away from the shit life I found myself in, running away I guess you could say.
I had the honour to serve with The First Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers as a front line Infantry soldier/commander from 1994 to 2004 during which I got to experience the world, which includes operational tours of Bosnia, Northern Ireland (Londonderry and South Armagh) and was one of the Desert Rats who liberated Basra, Iraq (Op Telic 1).
After serving my time I became lost in the world and subsequently struggled with life, ended up divorced, bankrupt, unemployed, street homeless, alone and isolated with no family or friends, I was a very angry man with ill mental health labelled with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, I had no life or desire to live and became suicidal.
Thankfully I was strong enough to pull my head out my arse and sort myself out (bit by bit). Realising I needed to re-educate myself I went back to college then onto University and after 5 years of hard emotional slog I earnt my BA (Hons) degree in Counselling and became a member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).
I have worked for years in Veteran support and Counselling with various charities and also privately. I tried to fit in to this world however I'm not a fluffy Counsellor, and I can't help but speak my mind, something that civvy street struggles' to hear.
Top and tail of it is, I know how to help and support you, I don't offer sympathy but I can empathise with you and I can relate to you,
because I've been there too.
Having spent many years as a Veteran support worker
it would be remiss of me not to provide some links here for other Veteran support.
Just Jack Counselling Services is NOT recommending these services,
equally that doesn't mean you shouldn't give them a try, as there is no such thing as "one size fits all"
and in my experience of Veteran services it massively comes down to
the support worker you get and of course funding.
I have had personal and professional experience of many Veteran organisations,
I take on board that this is not about me but about the individual requiring support,
so regardless of my experience good or bad that doesn't mean it will be the same for you,
so keep an open mind and look for the positives
and if it's not working for you then try someone else,
the only thing here that is important is that you get the help you need.
Don't give up.
Information and support for veterans and their families
We are the first point of contact for you and your loved ones. Contact us 24/7 for help across housing, mental wellbeing, finances and more. And we can also refer you directly to our Referral Partners. Get in touch with our friendly helpline team by phone, chat, text and email.
We provide lifelong support to those who are serving or have served in the British Army, Royal Navy, Royal Marines or the Royal Air Force, and to their families.
Founded in 1885, we’re extremely proud of our long-standing heritage and of all the work we do with inspiring people from Tyne & Wear, across the UK and around the world.
The Royal British Legion is here to help members of the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force, veterans and their families. And we’re not going anywhere.
We support serving and ex-serving personnel all year round, every day of the week.
Our support starts after one day of service and continues through life, long after service is over.
Operation Veteran aims to provide information, advice and guidance and a dedicated service of support to veterans of the armed forces to assist with their transition back to civilian life and the challenges that presents, through signposting, group and one to one support, shared experiences and as a focal point for assessment and referral to specialist advice and support.
We provide free support for veterans and their families, including a helpline, Veterans Welfare Service, Defence Transition Services and injury/bereavement compensation scheme payments.
We also provide welfare support for veterans of any age, and their families through the Veterans Welfare Service and the Veterans UK helpline: 0808 1914 218.
Who we are
We provide compensation, pension and welfare support to serving personnel and veterans and facilitate access to appropriate support from other government departments, local authorities,
independent bodies and the charity sector.