The problems of post-traumatic stress for armed forces veterans were brought home to members of the Rotary Club of Oldmeldrum, as the club welcomed a representative of the “Combat Stress” charity.
Major Greg Manning, a Rotary member from Huntly, took the opportunity of a guest speaker’s slot to explain some of the problems which former service personnel could face, often years after serving on the front line.
He said: “Care for those physically injured in battle in this country is second to none, but it’s not the same for those who witness this, where the military ethos is to ‘crack on’ regardless.
“Even if the chain of command is aware of developing psychological problems, people are very busy and it’s often just kept ‘in house’.
“The real problem is when it doesn’t go away.”
Explaining that the average time for referral for specialist help could be as long as 12 years, Major Manning continued: “Often, when confronted with the problems of ex-service personnel, people forget that not that long ago they were in combat.
“Quite frequently, referrals come from other agencies such as the police once the person’s military service is noticed and two and two can be put together.”