General Question

SergeantQueen's avatar

Will these things affect my chances in the military?

Asked by SergeantQueen (10687points) February 14th, 2017

I have a past of depression and anxiety. A couple years ago, on two separate occasions, I took a bunch of pills. I have gotten therapy for it and am no longer on the medications. I don’t have depression anymore but my anxiety is still there just not in a way that it prevents me from doing things. Will I not get accepted into the Air Force because of this?

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22 Answers

Patty_Melt's avatar

You probably will not. Ask a recruiter. They know all the exceptions and loopholes.

johnpowell's avatar

My sisters son got rejected from the Navy for tattoos. Just a few old English letters on his stomach they said looked gang related. He is a tiny white red headed kid and he nailed the ASVAB.

There is the question of if they will find out if you just don’t tell your history. They might not find out.

But if they do find out and you get caught you are fucked.

SergeantQueen's avatar

So is this something I would be better admitting to a recruiter as soon as possible? Instead of risking the chances of getting caught + lying?

johnpowell's avatar


It is the difference between rejection and prison.

SergeantQueen's avatar

Okay, thank you.
I feel the Air Force would be more likely to reject me because of how selective they are.
If you get rejected from one branch is that basically the same as getting rejected from all the others, meaning I would have no chance in the military?

(Sorry I am asking so many questions on this thread, I don’t want to create a new one each time)

johnpowell's avatar

Honestly, with your admitted problems allowing you in any branch of the military should be criminal.

I would look at Burger King if you need a steady.

SergeantQueen's avatar

Seriously not needed. I was just wondering if it would hinder me in any way I wasn’t asking for your job suggestions or your opinions on what should be criminal or not. Thank you. Have a good day.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

The air force might not take you but the marines are not to picky if you want to be a grunt.

johnpowell's avatar

The wage gap doesn’t exist. Feminism is an unhelpful and pointless movement. Black Lives Matter should be considered a terrorist group. From my experience, these are all unpopular.

I can give you shit for being a nutter, when you are actually a nutter. You do not deserve to serve the country. Your destiny is flipping burgers.

And read this persons history. There is some cray in there.

Darth_Algar's avatar


“I don’t have depression anymore but my anxiety is still there just not in a way that it prevents me from doing things.”

Frank honesty, if you have anxiety, even if it doesn’t prevent you for doing normal day-to-day stuff, it’s probably not going to go well for you in any branch of the military. Even if you got accepted into any branch all that’s likely to happen is that it ratchets your anxiety up by a factor of several and, at best, you end up washing out.

SergeantQueen's avatar

Alright. Now you are just being rude.
My views have nothing to do with this question. That was an answer to a question I answered like 2 weeks ago.
I am not a “nutter”. And I suggest you stop insulting me. I do not appreciate it. It has no relevance right now. Once again, I did not ask for your job suggestions so please stop commenting on here.

@Darth_Algar I have gone through week-long military camp things and I was anxious at first, but then I got over it. I was able to tell myself that it is basically just mind games they play.

Darth_Algar's avatar

Yeah, I’m sure you had fun at army camp, but it’s nothing like what you’d experience at actual boot camp. What they do isn’t just “mind games they play” – the entire purpose is to break you psychologically, so that they can remake you into what they need, and to try to break you physically to see what you’re made of.

You kinda remind me of a cousin of mine. Oh, he did the “military camp things”. He was so sure he’d be able to take anything they dished out at him. He lasted about a week and a half.

SergeantQueen's avatar

I am aware of it breaking you psychologically that is what I meant by mind games.

I don’t know why everyone feels they can tell me what I can and cannot do when all I asked was if this would affect my chances. I do not need input on any other topic. I know how to deal with anxiety and if I want to enlist I will, I just wanted to know what impact my past would have, I obviously shouldn’t have asked here because you guys feel that you somehow have the right to tell me what jobs I should be doing or that I won’t be able to handle it. That was not my question. I know what I am capable of and I don’t appreciate anyone trying to tell me otherwise.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

While you may have undergone treatment, I do not believe any branch of the military would employ you with a documented history of anxiety and mental health problems. It’s a stressful job. I certainly don’t think you are limited to a life flipping burgers, and there may be civilian jobs you can do connected to the military, but if you want an active service role, I’d be very doubtful of that happening. Even a civvie job is unlikely if it is in a stressful area.

You should definitely talk to a recruiter about what career prospects there might be. They will be able to give you absolute advice and don’t lie. It will come back to bite you.

Darth_Algar's avatar


If all you wanted was a simple “yes” or “no” answer then why did you not simply ask a recruiter? They’re the ones who’d be able to give you that particular answer.

funkdaddy's avatar

There’s a FAQ on which includes the question

Are anti-depressants disqualifying?

If we’re good with the assumption that people on anti-depressants have a history of depression, it would seem to answer your question. There’s two answers, this one seems to be from someone who went through the process with the Air Force.

You’ll need to bring my medical records from the doctor who prescribed the anti-depressants. You’ll go to MEPS, take the ASVAB but your processing will be terminated at a certain point due to being honest about depression. Your records will be sent to the AF surgeon general’s office for review. This supposedly takes between six weeks and three months—mine took a full three months.

If the waiver is granted, you’ll be cleared to return to MEPS. On your return trip, they’ll do a height/weight check then send you offsite to a psych consult. The doctor will then send his recommendation to MEPS where you will be reviewed further. This took nearly five weeks for me.

If you are deemed fit for service, you will return to MEPS for job selection. Contrary to what I was initially told, depression rules out many jobs in the AF.

rojo's avatar

This is probably gonna get some folks upset with me but, don’t ask, don’t tell. If they don’t ask if you have depression/anxiety don’t mention it to them. If it was me and I wanted in, I would not mention it to them even if they did ask. Also, before going anywhere near a recruiter you need to do all you can to delete each and every internet account that you have. Pretty much wipe the slate clean. Make them have to work to find anything incriminating. Also, @Hypocrisy_Central is right about the marines and they have planes too if that is your interest.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@rojo, I would expect @funkdaddy‘s information is right. @SQ will be required to provide access to her medical records. The military won’t just take her word that she has no medical problems (past or present).

Plus, this is the government. I remember when I went for my immigration interview. I’d filled in the required forms, but during the interview, the interviewer started telling me all about my family. They gave details about both my brother’s jobs – where they worked etc. I hadn’t provided that info. They had done a background check and had info I had no knowledge about. It was a lesson in how much info there is out there about us and who can access it. We’re going back over 30 years so I dread to think what they can access now because everything is online.

rojo's avatar

But, perhaps she will get some flunky that doesn’t give a rats ass. What does she have to lose? Do what you can to clean your record and eliminate negative data and give it a go. What are they gonna do if they find something? Basically, just tell her no. So, go in with the attitude that this might fail. If is doesn’t, then everything is all gravy…

Darth_Algar's avatar

Yup, all gravy until it suddenly springs up and interferes with her job there. Only by then lives might be on the line. Or no livres are, everyone’s OK, but they find out she lied, so it’s a dishonorable discharge and a possible stint in a military prison for her. Yup, all gravy…

Patty_Melt's avatar

@SergeantQueen , you may feel like you are being judged here, and eben cruelly taunted. The fact is, military life is that every day, and night, and severely so.
It is VERY different, from the moment you hit boot camp.
Private Benjamin was a funny little movie, but there is some truth to it. Let me lay out for you what parts are representative of the truth.
WISHING FOR YOUR CURLING IRON: while some don’t use curling irons, you don’t have to be the privileged sort to deeply miss little things about life as you remember it. I can’t tell you how many times I heard, when I was in boot, “Oh, gawd, I want some Noxema!”
Boot even changes your period! Many of the girls had a period which lasted two or even three weeks. I didn’t have one at all.
You have limits on space, and strict limits on what you can bring. I was selling tampons for a buck each, and this is over three decades ago.
There was a girl there who looked upon me as some sort of hero. I was two years older than most recruits, and didn’t cry at night. One night she found a suicide during her watch rounds. The girl was bleeding freely from her wrist in the shower. She told me at first she was frozen with panic, but then she thought I wouldn’t do that. She went for the CCs, and saved the girl’s life. People kill themselves in boot, fer realsies. It sounds simple enough on the outside, just hang in there a few weeks, I’ll be okay. Not necessarily.
DIFFERENT PERSONALITY TYPES: Boot has people from all over the country, farm folks, city folks, bangers. Yes, there are chicks who will take your shit and swear you gave it to them. There is nobody who won’t throw you under the bus if it will keep them from being in trouble. No, the staff sergeant does NOT give a shit about ironing things out to make it fair.
ENCOUNTERING UNEXPECTED THINGS: oh yes, you will. Count on the unexpected.
MEN CAN STAND IN YOUR FACE, LOOK YOU UP AND DOWN, AND COMMENT HOWEVER THEY WANT: and so can the women, and making any comment or eyeroll, gawd… you don’t wanna know.

This bs about the marines letting people in easier, maybe, but know this, if they sense any weakness at all, they are like sharks on blood and they will kill you.
Here’s another movie with a point to consider, GI Jane. Yes, thete are men who think raping a military woman prepares her for what could happen. Yes, I have seen such men.
Getting past boot does not make everything okay either. It is not normal life.
There are civilian jobs which will exclude anyone with a psych history too.
Air traffic controllers are a good example.
When you are excluded from any employment because of a psych diagnosis, there is good reason for it. They are protecting you, and countless others from unnecessary harm.
I think there are lots of places and ways you can make a living, and be somebody. I think you should heavily consider the notion that the military is not for you.
I say this not because I think low of you, I don’t. I say this because I would not want a nice person to ruin herself trying to make a point. Trust me. The military is not a standard for greatness.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

As @Earthbound_Misfit states above, everything is online, including the US Military Enlistment DD4/2007 Form in downloadable pdf format. This is the current military enlistment application being used at this time. I suggest you read the DD4 closely. It’s only 4 pages long.


Note the Certification and Acceptance clause D at the top of page 2:

13a. My acceptance for enlistment is based on the information I have given in my application for enlistment. If any of that information is false or incorrect, this enlistment may be voided or terminated administratively by the Government or I may be tried by a Federal, civilian, or military court and, if found guilty, may be punished. ”


During the enlistment process, you will sign a DD2807–1 Form (downloadable pdf format) that will give the military access to your medical history. Scrutinize this form closely. Note at the top of the first page under Privacy Act Statement:

DISCLOSURE: Voluntary; however, failure by an applicant to provide the information may result in delay or possible rejection of the individual’s application to enter the Armed Forces. For an Armed Forces member, failure to provide the information may result in the individual being placed in a non-deployable status.

WARNING: The information you have given constitutes an official statement. Federal law provides severe penalties (up to 5 years confinement or a $10,000 fine or both), to anyone making a false statement. If you are selected for enlistment, commission, or entrance into a commissioning program based on a false statement, you can be tried by military courts-martial or meet an administrative board for discharge and could receive a less than honorable discharge that would affect your future.

Section 17 on page 2 deals with mental disorders. Note especially 17a, e, f and g. Pay attention to the “catch-all” questions on Page 2, to wit: 19 d., 20, 21, 23, 24 (Notice 24 mentions Healers.) and 27.

You will be given a chance to explain your answers to questions 1 – 28 in writing at the bottom of page 2 and all of page 3. List each explanation with the question number you are explaning. Write legibly. Be brief. Pick your words carefully. Divulge no more detail than necessary to give investigators the leads to the information. Do not lie or obfuscate. The rule in the military is, If something was never documented, it never happened. Give just the bare facts and no opinion.

I suggest you download this form and write out your explanations repeatedly until they are clean, concise—no more than two sentences long each—and truthful. Depression is a common ailment. Lying is unacceptable at any rank as we just found out with General Flynn..


I) The term “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” (DADT) pertains only to matters of sexual orientation and nothing else, according to Department of Defense Directive 1304.26 issued on December 21, 1993.
.....a) Public Law 103–160
.....b) DADT CRS Report submitted to Congress,Oct., 2010.

II) Omission of any information on the DD4 or the DD2807–1 forms and any other Department of Defensed documents, except that concering sexual orientation, is considered fraudulent and falls under false or incorrect information as addressed in 13a above. Every aspect of your life is in a database somewhere. The world is connected by computers and the internet. It’s not like used to be. US security agencies, such as the FBI have access to all databases.
....a) US Military Standards of Fitness. NOTE Page 14, §2–27: Psychiatric Disorders

¶ d. Current mood disorders including, but not limited to, major depression, bipolar, affective psychoses, depressive not otherwise specified, do not meet the standard.

NOTE: The clinical definition of major depression is a diagnosis that lasts longer than 6 months and includes suicidal ideation.

§(1) History of mood disorders requiring outpatient care for longer than 6 months by a physician or other mental health professional, or inpatient treatment in a hospital or residential facility does not meet the standard.

§(2) History of symptoms consistent with a mood disorder of a repeated nature that impairs school, social, or work efficiency does not meet the standard.

III) Juvenile records which have been “sealed” and all medical records are considered relevant and will be uncovered by the FBI during the Military Entrance Processing Station process (MEPs), and later during each MOS change and AIT assignment and clearance processes.

IV) Recruiters have been known to lie to potential recruits during the application process. I suggest you read the following:

I Cannot Tell a Lie: False Statements on Military Enlistment Paperwork (from The Balance)


“Based on the advice of his recruiter, a Marine recruit failed to report that he had been diagnosed in the past with depression. He made it through basic training but became depressed during infantry training. The medical officials located and obtained his civilian medical records and discovered the diagnosis. He was given an “Under Other Than Honorable Conditions” (UOTHC) Discharge.”

He could have been judged to be acceptable upon appeal during MEPs, but he chose fo follow bad advice and lie instead, and he paid the price. A less than honorable discharge is almost as damaging as a felony when trying to get a job as a civilian. You’ll have people requesting to scrutinize your DD214 for the rest of your life and you’ll have absolutely no control over what the military puts in it.

Information About Military Enlistment

A call to a medical professional at your local MEPs will be able to answer many of your questions as to the wording of your statements on the DD2807. If you feel that person is advising you to answer in an untruthful manner, I suggest your follow that instinct. It happens.

Uncle Sam really does want you. They just don’t want another Chelsea Manning. Because of the Manning case, investigations into a recruits past have been far from lax in recent years. The heat is on. Careers are at stake if you turn out to be a bad apple.

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