PTSD and TDRL.. DO NOT MIX

Discussion in 'PTSD and Mental Health Conditions' started by chadmp1997, Jun 29, 2008.

  1. chadmp1997

    chadmp1997 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I am 30 years of age and have been diagnosed with PTSD. I have served in the Marine Corps as an infantryman and in the Army as an MP(IED Bait). I have been dealing with everything you all are familiar with. The beautifully vivid nightmares that are always about death. Distancing myself from my family and the complete lack of any emotion that most human beings expect to see, especially the ones that love you. Which has made my life a big ball of poo. I am now awaiting my PEB findings and I am more then positive I will recieve this TDRL conglomeration. Going through the MEB and PEB has made things worse. I never really had a sense of family or team the whole time in the Army and this is only exasperated now that I have been turned lose at the WTU to face my impending fate. I have been reading all of the postings here and have come to the conclusion that TDRL is a good way for the military to turn lose their civilan mind controlled employees on you. Ohhh yes my fellow veterans those undertrained over paid interns who all think they have their own solution for every problem a vet or Soldier has. So here is the solution huh? TDRL....... What a genious plan!!!! Lets stress out those Soliders who have seen too much and are dealing with too much. Are you kidding me? Why am I going through these forums and seeing young Vets stressing about the details of this stupid program? Why is my fate to be determined by some little ball of pond scum who knows about as much of the world around him/her as my 5 month old puppy? I have the answer and you will not like it. Because you signed up to defend your country and do things that these plant eating liberals wont do. They think you are simple and can put a little piece of steak in front of you and trick you right out of your own underwear. What if I get out and after 3 years of dealing with this things get better? Then its off to visit the INTERN and back to the Army to serve out the last 10 months I would owe them. Which as we all know to well amounts to stop loss and another deployment. What if I get a good job? This is the most broke thing I have ever seen. Does anyone have anything good to say about TDRL? I seriously doubt it...but I challenge you!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The nation which forgets its defenders will itself be forgotten!!!!!
     
  2. RikersIsland1

    RikersIsland1 PEB Forum Veteran

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    Messages:
    305
    Trophy Points:
    0

    QUESTION: What is the TDRL?

    ANSWER: The TDRL is a list of Army members found to be unfit for performance of military duty by reason of physical disability which may be permanent, but which has not sufficiently stabilized to permit an accurate assessment of a permanent degree of disability. The Secretary of the Army is required by law to maintain the TDRL, and has delegated responsibility for this function to HQDA (AHRC-PDB). See AR 635-40, Chapter 7, para 7-2; 10 USC 1210.

    QUESTION: What will happen when my medical condition has stabilized?

    ANSWER: You will either be retired for permanent disability if your disability is rated 30% or more and you have less than 20 years service; retired for permanent disability no matter the percentage of disability if you have over 20 years of service; separated with severance pay if your disability is rated less than 30% and you have less than 20 years service; or found physically fit for return to active duty.

    QUESTION: How will the final determination be made in my case?

    ANSWER: The same procedure used when you were first placed on the TDRL will be employed. A medical reevaluation is completed and, after being reviewed by you, is forwarded to a Physical Evaluation Board. The determination by the Physical Evaluation Board is not final and may be reviewed by the Physical Disability Agency. All medical evidence will be carefully evaluated to ensure that a just and accurate determination is made. To ensure that your interests are protected, you will be afforded the opportunity to appeal or rebut the Physical Evaluation Board’s findings before your case is finalized.


    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Jason Perry

    Jason Perry Benevolent Leader Site Founder Staff Member PEB Forum Veteran

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Messages:
    11,187
    Trophy Points:
    1,225
    chadmp1997,

    Welcome! It is definitely true that this whole process is stress inducing. As far as defense of TDRL? Well, let me say that of course it is better to have a permanent finding, especially if it is at the same level as 50%. That is really the only "benefit" of TDRL, you get paid at a minimum of 50%. It may also be good for those who want to and have the potential to return to duty.

    But other than that, it definitely has some drawbacks. First being that for PTSD and all mental health disorders, the rule stick they use to judge your impairment is the impact on your industrial capacity. While you are in-service, this can include things like not tolerating rifle ranges, explosions, having hard time with authority. After you are out, the significance of these things tneds to drop off. So, even with the same symptoms/problems, you could get a lower rating. Also, I think it is easier to document limitation in the military (there are less people observing your performance in civilian life, generally).

    Holding a full-time job on TDRL can work against you. It is ironic that there are many veterans rated by the VA very high for PTSD and holding full time jobs, but the military will reduce your rating for the same condition. The military has not gotten this "dress-right" and fails to rate appropriately in my opinion (especially in discounting Social impairment as a factor).

    One thing, if you are found fit after TDRL, you have the option of returning to service, but do not have to. Also, they may end up doing away with TDRL in the future. The 2008 NDAA directed the Dept. of Defense to study the continued utility to TDRL. It may be that they go to retaining you until you are stable for rating purposes in the future. I don't have a guess how this would affect those already on TDRL.

    I sure understand that this process can suck! I hope it goes well for you and if you need to vent, this is a good place.
     
  4. chadmp1997

    chadmp1997 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thank you for the BOOK definition of TDRL! I do mean it. But what I AM looking for is a PERSONAL view of the TDRL process because it is just that. A long drawn out PEB that while it is on going you are uncertain of your true future as is your family. Or a way to oust the VA. So the rich that we serve can cut it out of the picture and continue to line their pockets....not that the VA is doing a good job anyway. But please people snap out of military mode for a second and be an analitical thinker. Because truth does not reside in the words in front of your face but what goes on behind the scenes.
     
  5. chadmp1997

    chadmp1997 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Jason...my other posting is not directed at you. Thank you for being "real" as I like to call it. I am also very happy that there are others that are just frustrated with these "Systems" the military uses. It should be cut and dry or perhaps up to the service member to determine his/her own fate. I would just rather opt for severance and try to move on with my life. I dont need and in my opinion others like me dont need this constant reminder that we have issues. Another thing....it seems that most of all of this is not treatment of the issue(PTSD) at all but it seems like all the running around we do and appointments we have are not to treat PTSD but to keep people sure of the fact the we have PTSD.
     
  6. JJR007

    JJR007 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I can validate your frustration with this process. I too have been put on TDRL due to PTSD. I haven't even started my retirement time yet and I have been going throught this whole thing for almost 2 years now. I returned from Iraq (in one PHYSICAL piece) in Feb 07. Of course I tried to deny my problems out of fear of being labeled as weak and a mental case so I denied myself help for about 8 months. Then I had no choice when I put myself and others lives at risk durring training because of flashbacks and anxiety attacks. There is one thing positive I have to say about this whole process............... you can't control everything in your life, the only thing you can control is how you view it and react to it. I can tell you one thing that you can be happy about...... at least the Army didn't try to kick you out with NOTHING at all. Now, the Army is paying you retirement (which is TAX FREE), you can be home with your family, and you can get another job and move forward with your life. What you truly need is closer to those memories from war. I know it sounds stupid and so typical but as soon as you accept it and actually do it, you will realize it works. Trust me.... I understand where you are coming from. I spent every day outside the wire for 6 months in Iraq chaising IED's. I have seen the before, after, and I was even a durring on a few occations. So I believe I can relate.

    "The world can not help those who refuse to help themselves." Not sure who said that but it helped me open my eyes and press on.
     
  7. saf8772

    saf8772 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Not to upset you but to bring some light to how long you may be one TDRL . I had Testicular Cancer which also spread to my lymph nodes in my abdomen and had to have a couple surgeries that have caused severe Lymph Edema which has made my left leg pretty much a swollen useless piece of flesh and 3 cycles of Platnum based Chemo Therapy and I was on TDRL from Sept. 1996 to March 2000, just to give you a LIMBO time frame. I hope things have imprived since then for you. If you want to read about my Horror story read my "12 years and counting" in the VA forums section on this board.
     
  8. medicsoldier

    medicsoldier PEB Forum Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2008
    Messages:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ok I had to get into this one. JJR007 what you basically just told somebody was to suck it up and drive on and that is the Army way. Please don't misunderstand. I love the Army and everything it stands for. As a medic I have been able to enjoy the closeness you feel in the infantry. I also have enjoyed being embraced by other branches because of being a medic. Everybody reacts to things in different ways. We all heal at different rates. We all saw things that were different from each other. I have spent 24 months out side the wire but that does not take away from what you went through. It just means I may have been exposed to things more frequently.

    You can't tell a Soldier to just suck it up and drive on. That is the reason the suicide rate is up so high. Not everybody can move past PTSD as easy as you were able to. Trust me I am very happy that you have been able to move on with your life and been able to put those memories behind you. I just hope you did not just bury them inside of you and not dealt with them. They will unfortunately arise again. I have spent the last 2 yrs trying to move on. What I would not do just for one night of un-interrupted sleep. One day when something did not bring back a memory. Just one day I could go with out smelling and seeing a French SF Soldiers body after being killed and sitting in the Afghanistan heat for 3 days and then seeing what once was skin stick to the body bag as we placed him in it. I have many more memories but I think the point is made.

    Just be careful in what you say to another and be mindful of what you went through maybe just the tip of the ice berg for them.

    Thank all of you for your service to our Country. You have made it a better place for my children.

    Doc James
     
  9. Chinook

    Chinook PEB Forum Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2008
    Messages:
    477
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Medicsoldier, I commend you on your tact and information. As an Air Force Medic, in previous life, I agree with your words completely!

    chadmp & others; I would like to respond in regards to TDRL.

    Now that I've been on it for 4 1/2 months, I can say I'm happy with it. I NEEDED a break!!!! A chance to re-group. My condition, if anything, is getting worse. Back injury with new nerve radiculopathy. And of course there is depression as it can be part of an injury or disease process. So, we'll see where all that goes...But, Back to my point...Jason brought up the point that they may consider not keeping TDRL-well, I remember getting put on con leave towards the end and I couldn't even care for myself. I was in SO MUCH pain. And, I was SO DRUGGED UP!! that I didn't know which side was up. I needed my family-I needed to be home where they could help me. So, I do think there is a place for it; I can't imagine waiting until I stabalized to have been released. Ikes! I went through the process & yes, the beginning, the middle, and waiting for the results was so very stressful...but now that I'm through that I have the opportunity to like I said "re-group". Yes, I am concerned for my future and the PDRL. But, you get to the point of understanding that worry gets you no where. Instead-I have at least 15 months or so to get my ducks lined up. Get my paperwork in order for my TDRL follow-up. Like Jason said, for some, they want back on active duty and they'll make it. For me, I know I can't make it through the day without pain and I'll never make it back. But, yes, TDRL has given me the opportunity to take a deep breath in, to relax, re-group, DETOX, and get my life back into some order. I think going from Active Duty to PRDL could be additional stress in someone's life. Medtechs, Psychtechs,RNS, we all know the stressors and sudden Permenant changes aren't necessarily the way to go either. So thats my take. You wanted real personal experiences. Everyone is different, Every situation is different, and we all deal with things differently. This option is good for some people. You take care of yourself.

    Chinook
    Be Happy! Its a choice!
     
  10. Orion69

    Orion69 PEB Forum Veteran

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    Messages:
    103
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Hey all,

    I just wanted to weigh in on this issue. I can empathize with everyone here. I also was in the Marines and then the Army, I also was discharged with PTSD. However, they didn't even put me on TDRL, they kept me in a WTU for thirteen months (which was a little like being in my own personal hell) and then they screwed me with a ten percent rating and sent me home with a severance. (Which the VA now is recouping dollar for dollar.) Personally, I would have preferred TDRL because it would have given me an opportunity to really stabilize and see if I could go back to active duty. Yes, it is limbo but you can also work it so that you don't have to work and you can work on yourself. I have to go back and fight the Army once again to get them to follow their own rules for rating disabilities (oh yeah, since then the Army has decided to start following the law in rating PTSD). So, if you were put on TDRL just consider it a gift for now and go get treatment and get your life stabilized again. Yes, you will have to put up with the board one more time when they give you your final rating but you can cross that bridge when you come to it.

    Kevin
     

Share This Page