An Odd Scenario for ADHD- Help prior-enlisted!

Discussion in 'DoDMERB' started by Fredrick8401, Feb 11, 2015.

  1. Fredrick8401

    Fredrick8401 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2015
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Okay,
    So I have rampantly looked through many forums and guides on multiple website and to no avail have I have an answer.
    First my background:
    Growing up with a mother that has a strict "sit and learn it, you dont need to see a doctor" mentality; I went through grade school and high school without ever taking a prescription or being diagnosed with ADHD/ADD. I achieved good grades, 3.3+ all throughout a strenuous academic plan. Being accepted to Ball State and Indiana University out of high school, I instead chose to enter the Air Force for Pararescue; I passed MEPS fine and got a 93 on the ASVAB. I had an injury at PJ indoc and was given the option to leave Active Duty and join the Reserves with a different AFSC. I did so- went into Air Transportation and received honor graduate at technical school. Upon starting my freshman year of college at IU I was prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD because of a restlessness, basically I take it occasionly to just slow down instead of always go go going on hw and other tasks. It helps me study of course and also lets me attend to other things than just school. Starting my sophomore year I now want to join AF ROTC; I understand that ADHD is medically disqualifying, but is there a way I can get around that? I showed continuous academic superiority with out the medication and also continue to hold a 3.5+ GPA in college. What are my options:
    1. Would I be able to just not disclose the information if it is through a citizen-doctor?
    2. Would I be able to join based on my previous MEPs acceptance and history of good academics while not on medication?
    3. What would the waiver process look like? Would I have good favor for being waived?
    4. Any other routes? What are your opinions?

    Im sorry for the long post- I just really would like to continue my Air Force career. There has to be a way for me to get in- Please please any advice, experiences..etc would help tremendously.

    -I told my AF reserve doctor during a interview that I occasionally took Vyvanse and he didn't seem to really think it was a big deal.
    -Please give me good opinions or advice; I do not need to hear that I shouldn't have taken it or shouldn't be on it- I don't need another mother and I have read that everywhere already.

    Last thing- I know the AF recently changed their policy on ADHD so most of these older threads are out of date.
     
  2. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,756
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    No way around it. I'm assuming Vyvanse is a controlled (C-2) drug like Ritalin?

    Do you NEED to be on medication? You'll say "No, I can function without it." And then you'll be asked "Then why are you still on it?" And the answer? Well, it's easier! It's easier to not be distracted by the conversation four tables over while you can't focus on the person talking to you at your table." And you would be right.

    I can't speak to the waiver process now, but there was a required period of time (I believe it was one year) that you could not be on medication, and you had to test in normal conditions (no extended time).

    But I do not believe the path to a waiver is "make an exception for me." You'll be joining plenty of people with 4.0s who don't require a waiver. So my advice, if you really want to do this, you need to be off (and document that you're off medication) and make sure you're off for the required time.
     
  3. Subtle

    Subtle Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2014
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    6
    One of my good friends that went through BMT with me last December had been on Ritalin. She did have to go one year without taking the medication, but other than multiple trips to MEPS for the waiver process it didn't hinder her in any way.

    Every situation is different of course, and I don't know that ROTC standards are same, but it sounds like you should be okay. (Disclaimer: I'm not a doctor in any way, shape or form and an actual doctor could very well say otherwise.)

    But in any case, good luck!
     
  4. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,756
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    They want to see you can function off of medication. And they want a record of that fuctioning. A year lets them see you haven't failed out or been arrested or anything else.
     
  5. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,809
    Likes Received:
    956
    Mods I believe this needs to be moved to DoDMERB or ROTC forums. It is not a USAFA appointment/candudate aspect and impo would help more posters/lurkers if it was moved.

    Now, for answers.

    1. Eventually you will take a DoDMERB exam to commission in the AF. You can't hide it forever.
    ~ To commission via AFROTC you must attend SFT. If selected as a non-contracted cadet they will send you to a doc (at least they did years prior). You will have to fill out a medical history and since it is less than a year off, it will probably pop for the exam.
    ~~ No SFT equals no commissioning via AFROTC.

    2. MullenLE just posted the new email for DoDMERB help desk. I would contact them. MEPS is different from what I have always understood.

    3. The process will be submitting both medical documentation (proof no longer prescribed meds) from docs, and probably transcripts that you were able to maintain the academic level off the meds. DoDMERB DQs, commissioning sources waive. You are looking for an AFROTC commission, not a USAFA appointment...different sources.

    4. Stop the meds now. Don't go ROTC, go OCS. You would have to wait until your junior year in college to apply, but by that time you would be off it for more than 12-18 months and can prove with ease that this is not an issue. They hold OCS boards 2x a year. Start the process next Feb and by the time you show up to school for your senior year you will know if you will go to OCS

    Talk to the CoC of the detachment because impo your first hurdle will be getting selected as a 250 for SFT. Last years selection rate ranged from 17-63%. Nontech/non rated was 17%. Overall selection rate was @ 55%. The sooner you have them on board the better you will be Be it knowing chances or the path they will try.

    Again, this thread needs to be moved impo, just not sure it should go DoDMERB or ROTC.
    ~ DoDMERB because it is medical history
    ~ ROTC because if you go to the DOC today and have the prescription canceled it would be close to a year off meds and that might be in your favor for a waiver come SFT selection.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2015
  6. USMC_Ordie

    USMC_Ordie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    55
    Always be honest with the service. They will eventually find out, and 'mis-remembering' will get you booted.

    Mis-remembering, when I was still at home, that was called lying, and it got you a whoopin'.
     
  7. Fredrick8401

    Fredrick8401 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2015
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes, well I've been on it for a year now- before I took it I attended 3 months at the Air Force's most elite division of Spec Ops, my early career was mentored by Pararescue-men, Combat Controlers, and other specialist at Madena, Texas AFB. I underwent much more than most recruits in any branch. If you could perform, you could perform. I mean, we were not even allowed aspirin in our hours of rest, no vitamins, nothing. I eventually was put out because of an ankle injury- but i went on to graduate in the top of my new AFSC class.
    So yes, sure if the Air Force thinks its fit to deny me a hard earned position, and deny me the ability to reach for a higher goal because of a pill, prescribed by MY doctor that I occasionally use to wind-down after Ive been over-working; then I think id rather keep it to myself.

    So as for your "whoopin'"; Ive already got my *** beat from the military, Ive put time- I'm bettering myself in school now, striving for something more challenging. If I have to withhold an insignificant piece of personal information.. so be it.

    Thanks for all the replies.
     
  8. Fredrick8401

    Fredrick8401 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2015
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    'Mis Remembered'. Really? Back home, 'mis-remembering got you spanked, and good too. It's never fun when you had to pick out your own belt for it, or go cut the switch...
     
  9. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,809
    Likes Received:
    956
    Let's take a look at this from a different perspective. You want to become an officer and lead, correct? 15 years from now you are a PMS at a ROTC unit. Somehow you get wind that the cadet has with held medical information from DoDMERB. Do you ignore it, or be the leader, knowing full well that if they acknowledge it the chances are they may risk commissioning?

    You can't pick and choose when to follow the regulations and when to say it is just one little pill to help me unwind. You should know from being on PRP that everything you take medically matters to them.

    If you are asked and you do not answer truthfully than how do you rationalize in your mind this is what leaders do in the AF? Where exactly is it that you draw the line regarding ommission? Will you fess up ever or is this a secret you will keep to the day you leave the AF?
     
  10. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,756
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    My experience with with Ritalin, so I'm not entirely sure of the ins-and-outs of the drug you're talking about. If it's the same as Ritalin, here ya go….

    The fact of the matter, for a waiver you have you be off of it for a year (correct me if that's changed). Independent of how great you've been, they'll have a line and they'll stick to it. Even if you're off of it for a year, you'll STILL need a waiver. You just have to be off a year to even qualify for a possible waiver.

    It's not about how great or not great you are… trust me. It's yes or now…. and then depending on that answer, how you've done since...
     
  11. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2011
    Messages:
    2,807
    Likes Received:
    444
    Although I believe that our scoiety is overmedicated, a decision to stop or start any medication should be left to doctors. If you disagree with one doctor, get a second opinion.
     
  12. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,809
    Likes Received:
    956
    You are correct it should be left to a doctors decision, never act as your own doctor. I should have clarified it more I meant from the DoDMERB aspect and not hiding it, if off the medication for a specific amount of time and no adverse academic issues the ADHD meds become waiverable, and he can be honest and not hide it as he is proposing to do.
     
  13. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2011
    Messages:
    2,807
    Likes Received:
    444
    So be it a such a fitting remark. Just remember that there is no secret in the military and military is full of people that follow rules. So your decision to not disclose certain information might not hurt you now, but it could come back and get you.

    Not exactly the same, but an Army Major that got separated wrote an article how the Army being unfair to highly decorated combat veteran with multiple combat tours for a DUI that happened long time ago. Why did the Army overlook the DUI before, but now they are using it to separate him? The Army guaranteed him nothing. I am prettying sure he said something similar to "so be it" after the DUI and staying in the Army instead of pursuing another career.
     
  14. MabryPsyD

    MabryPsyD Dr. G.

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2013
    Messages:
    307
    Likes Received:
    88
    The difference is the MAJ told the Army about the DUI and they overlooked the info long enough to result in a decent career. This guy plans to (might) deceive the military by not disclosing his medical history.

    I can't tell you how many times I've had service members in my office who "stopped their meds" so they could join. Many leave the military a few months/years later for various reasons, which have associations with their previous diagnosis.

    Hopefully this deceiver (plans to anyways) will fly a desk instead of an aircraft, although I question which has the potential to cause the greater harm...
     
  15. Fredrick8401

    Fredrick8401 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2015
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    You guys really don't get this... ha, ok ok ok- so maybe I don't reveal the medication. I AM TWENTY THREE years old, I have done well in school, I have done sports my entire life, I have been in active duty, I have had no problems ever..
    So please "potential to cause the greater harm" is just bull ****. Being on medicine for a mere 6-8 months doesnt mean anything. I mean come on, you cant be serious...

    I only have 6 or 7 months until I proceed into ROTC.. so because I decided to use a medicine only as a trial to see if it helps me wind down.. so even if i quit using it now i still wouldnt be a year clear.
    So I should just end my entire military career and tell them?
     
  16. servenow

    servenow Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    6
    "Honesty is the best policy" even if it seems to be an obstacle to what you want. You seem to have a lot of potential and talent. Others with less have overcome such obstacles while maintaining their honor. I urge you to follow their example.

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  17. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,809
    Likes Received:
    956
    JMPO, but you are steadfast in your decision regardless what anyone says here.

    Good luck and God Speed.

    OBTW, please look at the current SFT selection rates...this may all be moot. 55% were selected...17% non tech non rated. No SFT...no commissioning!

    Fwiw I do wonder if you commission and are an O4 looking for promotion would you risk your career as a PMS in an AFROTC detachment knowing this information regarding a cadet would you support them?
     
  18. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,756
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    I'm confused about your confusion. You asked, and you have been answered. It may not be the answer you like, but it's the answer you get.

    I was a high school applicant to the Coast Guard Academy, Naval Academy and Merchant Marine Academy. I had a NROTC scholarship at Vanderbilt and Auburn. I had money to the University of Miami. I graduated near the top of my class, at a nationaly ranked magnet high school. I lettered in soccer, did well in athletics, was a member of a few boards, etc etc etc.

    I was also diagnosed with ADD long ago (before it was "cool") and I was on Ritalin. I could hear a conversation three tables over at dinner but couldn't focus on the conversations at my own table.

    For a year I continued my successful high school education off of Ritalin, so I could apply to a few of the schools above. It wasn't easy, but my grades were fine. The tough part was the next four years at the Coast Guard Academy, juggling a stressful environment, academics, athletics, and military requirements. My grades were not good. I graduated, but with an embarrassing GPA. And then I went off to the fleet and juggled even bigger things, that affected other people's careers. And that probably wasn't as easy as it could have been.

    I get what you're saying, but don't argue with everyone here because your planning didn't sync with the long established rules. This stuff isn't new now. It was wasn't new 14 years ago when I was going through it and you were nine years old.

    Either you'll lie or you won't. Either you'll omit information or you won't. Nothing I say or anyone else says here will make a dent in what your character already is. That's up to you.
     
    NavyHoops likes this.
  19. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Messages:
    3,094
    Likes Received:
    2,454
    Well said by LITS.

    I think the thing that stands out the most in LITS's post is, "And then I went off to the fleet and juggled even bigger things, that affected other people's careers." In so many cases related to DODMERB I read that DS, DD or I have not had symptoms in X amount of time or I only took it a few times. The bottom line is as an officer the decisions you make impact peoples careers and more importantly their lives. What if you end up being deployed to a combat zone and can't unwind properly? To be honest, it doesn't matter that you are 23, prior enlisted or whatever training you were in. I saw many folks who did not disclose or outright lied on their medical forms (either for commissioning or enlisted) that had to be sent home from war zones for a variety of reasons. Almost all were discharged because they omitted or lied and were not fit for military service. Yeap, they were fine in ROTC or boot camp or 3 years in garrison duty, but within weeks of being in a war zone... didn't work out so well. As already mentioned... its up to you how to handle this. Oh many of this on this forum do get it... we went through our training, were commissioned, served. We get it.
     

Share This Page