Congratulations on your book, Simon. Helpful to me in my work as a GP. I have seen first hand what insurance companies have done to some of my PTSD patients(police and ambos) and will continue to do what I can to help them.
As a society we owe much to those of you who allow themselves to be put in harms way to make our lives safe. Thank you for what you did during your service!
Read this book within a couple of days. Very REAL, very informative and very interesting and gives people a TRUE understanding of Policing and the after affects. Highly recommend it. Nicole.
I absolutely loved this book. It was so well written and informative. It is a very sad reality about the things our Police officers see, and the way in which they themselves, their close family and friends suffer.
Good evening Simon! I began reading your story this afternoon and have just finished reading it....in tears! My partner passed away almost 15 years ago at the age of 55 from a massive heart attack. He served in the QLD police force for 13 years before being discharged as medically unfit in 1988 from a nervous breakdown. We first met in 1978 and lost contact for several years before meeting again and then spending eight years in a relationship until his passing in 2002. He also hid his "demons" for all but the last twelve months of his life ...before finally opening up and discussing some of the numerous horrific cases he dealt with...and finally getting medication that he felt helped him deal with his feelings...unlike the previous medication that he felt had just masked his problems. I have no doubt he never discussed his concerns for much the same reasons as yourself. My Dad was discharged from WW2 in January 1946 after being admitted to a psych hospital at the end of the war. He had served overseas three times including El Alamein. I always recognised my Dad's emotional scars, and despite them all, he too masked his emotions and tried to continue a "normal" life. I tried to support Bruce in the same way I tried to support my Dad, and he understood my sometimes crazy antics as being my way of chasing away his "black dog" as he called it. I think I helped and I hope I helped but it was only in his last twelve months of life that he actually started to open up and bring down his barriers. Not a day goes by that I don't think about him and after reading your story I now feel that the final pieces of his puzzle are now complete. Thank you for writing your story! I feel I can now bring some closure to the sadness in his life that I couldn't quite resolve. I have many wonderful memories that fill my heart each and every day! I cherish that chapter of my life and in the words of a Garth Brooks song I'm glad I had that dance! And yes communication is such a key word! I am so glad you have such an incredible lady such as Sarah! I think I would have cried even more if you two had not communicated and stayed together! What an inspiration you are to all of your children but also to all of those with PTSD and their families! May they all read your story and all become survivors! 😊
Hi Simon, I recently finished reading your book. Thank you so much for sharing such a personal journey. It's just not talked about enough and I can see you are changing that. I just wanted to encourage you in your work because I think it's very important. I have worked in Forensics in Sydney and out of all I saw, the suicides were the hardest to see. Other times the most traumatic thing about a case would be reading the police report and I often thought about the officers attending these scenes. People care and you are doing some great work. I'm sorry for the things you have endured and witnessed in order to help our community and deliver justice. I wish you every strength, success and happiness as you continue your work. Thank you. Cassandra.
Hey man, my names Kyle and I'm from north-west Tassie. I just finished your book. Thanks for bringing us your story and being vulnerable and honest.
Last year I graduated from a counselling degree, and on placement I worked with an army vet with PTSD, and it really opened my eyes to the journey PTSD survivors have to walk out. I'm working in a school as a counsellor at the moment, but I'm trying to find some opportunities for some pro bono counselling work with adult PTSD survivors in my area, either police or vet. I Really got a lot of insight from your book, and I hope your recovery is going well man!
I picked your book up at Brissy airport, It’s a very honest & no holes barred account of your experiences in the Police, and the fall out… I am an RN with a background in ED and Intensive Care. From what I know of emergency services workers and what they are exposed to, it would be amazing how many Emergency Services workers DON’T have PTSD. I also have a friend who is a retired Police Officer who still struggles.
What was also disturbing was the battle that you had with Insurance trying to settle your case. This adds a huge layer of stress & uncertainly at a time when your energies are going towards rebuilding your life. I have been through the Workers Comp circus, my case was resolved without all the dramas that were attached to yours, and it’s still stressful.
Thanks so much for sharing your story so transparently & courageously; I know it will be a factor in strongly advocating for change. Nothing in life is wasted, your journey will tangibly help others who are struggling.
Wishing every blessing of good health & wellbeing on you & your precious family.
Regards, Gina Nielsen
PS, I live in Sydney on the North side, and drove over the bridge at Northbridge several days ago. The guards are there, at your instigation via the Coroner, and will help to prevent more suicides
OMG my husband just read your book!!!!! Was a freaking amazing help to him to actually realise he wasn’t alone. I think realistically its probably saved his life, I’ve literally thought I’d find him swinging from a tree at points this year.
Thank you for writing such an informative book, wish more people would read it, if not as a "help tool" but to experience through words what our wonderful police force have to endure.
Your book has given me even more of an insight although I am sure a few situations may have been made more member of the public friendly I knew the horrors underneath. I will ensure many of my colleagues read this and wil keep keeping on being a listening ear.
A week ago, I was just a young adult looking for a good book when I stumbled upon Life Sentence in Big W. Once I started I couldn’t put it down. If i didn’t have to go to work I think I would have finished it in a day. I think too often people only bother to give feedback when it is negative. But I wanted to email you to say how much I loved the book, and I now feel I have so much more insight into PTSD - a topic I had never really even thought about until reading your book.
I think its an important message and I know your book will make a difference to a lot of people.