Michael Apperley - A psychological debrief and readjusting to home life

Running time
2 min 31 sec
Date made
Place made
Department of Veterans' Affairs


We did have a lieutenant-colonel psychologist come in theatre and that was another trip out to pick him up. And he came through and just had a bit of a in theatre debrief with us prior to coming home, which, excuse me, which was quite useful, actually. And he, you know, just sort of stepped us through a few things and I think that was a good thing that the army did to make sure that people when they return, you know, return back home, that they'd had at least an opportunity to, you know, have a chat with, you know, a psychologist.

[Q: Was it a group debrief, or…] No, certainly, for me, he was an individual, an individual debrief, which, you know, I did speak to him when I got home as well, he sort of followed up with a, you know, a call after we got back, you know. It was a bit of an adjustment period, getting back, you know, you're always running at this heightened sense of, you know, you're in some sort of parallel universe almost, you know, everything seems to be, you know, just in this high level of tension.

And then, you know, in the Navy, it always used to take us a couple of weeks to get home, right, after we'd been somewhere, but you get on a flight, you do a couple of hops, and you're flying into Sydney two days later, and there's your family and, you know, you're sort of trying to get back into this society that you've been out for a little while.

And, you know, doors slamming and, you know, cars backfiring and those types of things, you know, took you a little, you know, you start to duck and, you know, do a few crazy things, but after a while, you know, you just sort of settle back in and sort of try and do your best to get back on with it … It's quite weird, actually.

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