After one of our own Admins battled with the effects of post traumatic stress, they decided to set up a support group for members of the emergency services
Thursday 21st June | by Cop(ex) | Follow us on Twitter: @ES_Humour |
Serving in the emergency services is one of the hardest and most stressful jobs out there.
Constantly dealing with traumatic incidents and events where people are going through perhaps one of the most tragic times in their life, can take its toll on the well-being of the brave men and women who serve on the front line.
We each deal with the extreme emotional stresses of the job in our own unique way.
For some, talking about the traumatic incidents which they have dealt with helps them to process the horrendous sights which they have witnessed.
Others turn to ‘dark humour’ as a means of almost ‘deflecting’ the extreme effects which can and often do come with the emotional stress of trying to deal with incidents which are truly horrific.
Whilst the intense training required to become a member of the emergency services will teach you how to do the job, the training in itself does not teach you how to deal with emotional burden of dealing with the job itself.
And this situation is often exasperated by extremely poor management which often plagues the operational role of the emergency services.
As an example, no amount of training can prepare you for an incident that involves trying to help a young child who has been stabbed by a callous and evil murderer but who ends up dying in your arms.
No amount of training can prepare you for being the first on scene to a mass casualty incident, such as a terror attack or multi-vehicle RTC, where you have to make decisions which will lead to some lives being saves, but other lives being tragically lost.
No amount of training can prepare you for the emotional and mental trauma that you will be subjected to, if you were one of the many Firefighters who attended the Grenfell Tower Fire.
The same applies to the legions of volunteers who sign up to save the lives of complete strangers.
The Lifeboat service is just one example of the volunteer emergency services.
You are not given any training in relation to how to cope with seeing people drown before your very eyes as you rush to try and save them from their sinking vessel.
Of course, there is always occupational health when it comes to reaching out for help.
We should also not forget about the fantastic services of organisations such as the Samaritans or Minds’ #OurBlueLight project.
But most people do not always take advantage of these services because they either do not want to have stress-related conditions on their HR record, or they maybe have a perception that they ‘have’ to cope with truly horrendous incidents by themselves.
One of our own Admins himself recently had to take some ‘time out’ owing to the effects of post-traumatic stress.
Having ‘come out of the other side’ he decided to set up a group on Facebook especially for members of the emergency services who perhaps do not want to go down the ‘official’ route in order to talk about the effects that the job is having on their own well-being.
I have personally found, from my own time serving in the Metropolitan Police, the armed forces and on the Lifeboats, that one of the best ways of coping with the emotional effects of doing the job that we do (or in my case did), is by talking to people who have experienced the same things which you have experienced.
And that is what this new group is all about.
If you ever feel like the emotional burden of serving in the emergency services, regardless of which service you are in, or where in the world you serve, is getting a bit too much then you are cordially invited to join the ‘Emergency Service Workers Support Network’.
The Group is a closed one and is managed by people who have actually been through what you might also be going through. They have served on the same ‘thin line’ that you have/are serving on.
There is absolutely no ‘shame’ in wanting to talk about your experiences.
We were not designed to be repeatedly exposed to constant trauma. You, after all, are only human.
We have a HUGE selection of kit, travel, gym and sports bags which can be personalised with your details as well as with any of the ‘thin line’ emblems. SHOP NOW —>
Got a story? If you have an emergency services, NHS or armed forces related story to share, then contact the team by clicking on the ‘contact’ button.
Join our WhatsApp community!
ESN is now on WhatsApp, and we want you to join our communities.
To join, you need to have WhatsApp on your device. All you need to do is click the link and press 'Join community'.
No one will be able to see who is signed up, and no one can send messages except the ESN team.
Joining our WhatsApp channel is a great way to help support our work and best of all, it is free!
If you don't like our community, you can check out any time you like. To leave our community, click on the name at the top of your screen and choose 'exit group'.