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Suicide/deliberate act of self harm...no hope of class 1?

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Suicide/deliberate act of self harm...no hope of class 1?

Old 10th Jun 2024, 18:38
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Suicide/deliberate act of self harm...no hope of class 1?

I have a medical history of an unsuccessful suicide attempt (or probably more likely to be classed as a deliberate act of self-harm due to my age at the time and the circumstances). It was an isolated incident of a well-known painkiller attempted overdose in 2005, I was mid-teens and it happened on exam results day prompted by a perceived failure regarding my results. Quickly coming to my senses and realising what I'd done I told a family member (who was a doctor) and he took me to hospital. I received no medication, I was just monitored overnight (I vomited up most of the pills a few hours after taking them). I saw a child psychiatrist at the hospital the next day and was then discharged. There was deemed no need for follow up psychiatric treatment and I never saw my GP about it or any other mental health issue. My mental health was fine before this incident and has been fine ever since.

Obviously I am now faced with having to declare this in my initial class 1 UKCAA medical and a future class 3 FAA medical if I want to go to one of my top 3 flight schools. I'm aware of the UKCAA and FAA wording regarding suicide attempts/deliberate acts of self harm, basically you will be deemed unfit but it states that it is possible that you could be cleared after further psychiatric evaluation is undertaken.

Does anybody know of any pilot that has a history of suicide/deliberate act of self-harm (post-GermanWings) and eventually been deemed fit to fly? Or should I just give up now and forget about this dream as best I can?
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Old 11th Jun 2024, 09:13
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I don't know the answer to your question...but don't give up!

At the very least get a definite answer from the CAA: there's some guidance here https://www.caa.co.uk/aeromedical-ex...e-material-gm/

I would be very wary about not declaring anything on your initial.

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Old 11th Jun 2024, 10:16
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I know of one who was saved by a former military colleague and has been flying for many years since then. I also have a mate who had a breakdown and went back to flying in a flag carrier. Good luck..we all have times when we ask is this crock of sh@te worth it but there are brighter skies waiting.
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Old 12th Jun 2024, 11:22
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Thank you for your replies. I appreciate that no one can know the answer until I've been through the process, I guess it's just the natural human response to want to save yourself the pain and disappointment of failing (the class 1), self-protection I guess! I was hoping to hear of a case or two when it has happened so I know I at least have a chance, so good to hear of one or two previous cases (thanks blind pew), although I fear they may have been prior to the GermanWings incident.

Weirdly it's the FAA I fear more than the UKCAA, although I understand both are draconian in their attitudes! I'll be applying for the medicals early next year so I'll just have to cross my fingers and hope they think 20 years was enough time to have passed.
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Old 12th Jun 2024, 21:35
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As the above suggests, please donít give up. My PMís are always open regarding this.

Iím under the impression that itís better to be honest and upfront about what you have been through and, albeit long and drawn out, jump through the hoops that the U.K. CAA require you to do. But if it can be done, it can be done, as highlighted above. The thing that is on your side is that Iím sure the event happened quite a number of years ago, but itís better to be open about this rather than not. As I said, PM is always open.
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Old 13th Jun 2024, 05:19
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The German wings incident involved a long history and appeared to me that the captain was a bully as well as stupid and had told the poor guy that his career was over with the result of I’ll show you you count.
I read an accident report in the early 70s which iirc involved a Canadian carrier with a bully of an owner who was also a captain, they crashed on approach which the FO recognised was going to happen but said nothing which he revealed at the inquiry.
I confess that whilst I knew it wouldn’t be dangerous I didn’t point out an omission in his approach briefing to a bully who made a point of humiliating me to a Lufthansa crew which were dead heading to Kinshasa to operate their first service back. It was into Douala which had a deep quarry on short finals. At that time PNF called radio heights down to 30ft..Cur wanted 20;10;5;2ft..less than a width of a gnat’s cock..needle went down…went up…went down at horrendous speed followed by stick jerked backwards then push forwards and we arrived without a heavy landing and Cur being shown for what he was worth.
With my mate and myself; having had a head injury after being exposed to neurotoxins the companies medical branches gave a lot of help; but after 18 months of seeing a shrink twice weekly and the company’s one once a month they pulled the plug and gave me a more than generous pension; I had cancelled several conversion courses which they believed I was capable of completing but I didn’t have the confidence which is another story.
My mate went back to flying jumbos got another wife and family and retired to the sunshine- he had been arrested by two armed response units whilst his wife was sectioned.
There are times when most of us ask what for - watch the meaning of life - but there are many talented shrinks and others out there who understand.
good luck and smell the jet fuel.
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Old 13th Jun 2024, 11:49
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Originally Posted by LennyGetaway
Thank you for your replies. I appreciate that no one can know the answer until I've been through the process, I guess it's just the natural human response to want to save yourself the pain and disappointment of failing (the class 1), self-protection I guess! I was hoping to hear of a case or two when it has happened so I know I at least have a chance, so good to hear of one or two previous cases (thanks blind pew), although I fear they may have been prior to the GermanWings incident.

Weirdly it's the FAA I fear more than the UKCAA, although I understand both are draconian in their attitudes! I'll be applying for the medicals early next year so I'll just have to cross my fingers and hope they think 20 years was enough time to have passed.
Go for it, and let us know how you get on. PMs always open as PT92 says. I think the FAA have recently changed how they deal with MH issues.
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Old 13th Jun 2024, 12:25
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Originally Posted by hobbit1983
Go for it, and let us know how you get on. PMs always open as PT92 says. I think the FAA have recently changed how they deal with MH issues.
I still certainly think we have a long way to go however especially with a few draconian things that need to change. From both sides.
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