I joined the Marine Corps at the age of 20 after flunking out of college and getting dumped by my girlfriend of two years. Shit was going down the drain real fast and I thought joining the military would solve all my problems. I shipped off to MCRD San Diego in February of 2012. I wasn’t in the best shape in boot camp, as far as running is concerned, and I really didn’t know why. I was a stud on the pull-ups, sit-ups, and every other PT thing you can think of, but I couldn’t run to save my life. This was my drill instructors’ cue to haze the fuck out of me for three months. From the time I picked up with my training company to the time I graduated, I had two hours of fire watch every single night. I was IT’d many times while on fire watch. I was IT’d about six times a day. It didn’t take me long to realize that the reason I was having so much trouble with running was because I had an injury. I went to medical early in first phase and they told me there was nothing wrong with my foot, as they couldn’t see anything on the x-ray. This, obviously, made me an even bigger target for my DIs. They thought I was just weak and didn’t want to put out on runs, so they ramped up my IT sessions even more. It got to the point where I was probably spending more time on the quarterdeck than I was on the drill deck. But, through all of this, I made it through boot camp and became a Marine.
Moving on to MCT, my foot injury got even worse, but there isn’t a whole lot of running at MCT, so I was able to push through it without too much trouble. I didn’t even bother going to medical while at MCT, because I knew the idiot corpsmen couldn’t tell me anything I hadn’t already been told.
Going on to MOS school, my foot became an even worse problem, as my SSgt. liked nothing more than running six miles everyday for PT. I spent a good three months of the 4.5 months I was in MOS school on light duty for what the corpsmen described as a “fracture of my right fibula”. I knew that wasn’t what was wrong with me, so I tried to go to a civilian doctor to get a professional’s opinion on the matter. My SSgt. caught wind of this and told me that if I saw a doctor, he would make my life a living hell. Out of fear for my own safety, I opted not to see a doctor.
As a reservist, I got to go home after MOS school and check into my duty station. I saw a civilian podiatrist for my foot shortly after arriving back home. He diagnosed me with plantar fasciitis. My doctor said he couldn’t put any PT restrictions on me without doing an MRI on my foot, and since I had horrible health insurance at the time, that was out of the question.
I then failed a PFT in April of this year and was chastised by everyone from my platoon sergeant, to company commander for being an out-of-shape bag of ass. I had about reached my breaking point with this whole situation. It was at this point I decided to buy some better health insurance and get that MRI done that my doctor suggested. I got it done and my doctor described my plantar fascia as irreparably damaged. If I had gotten my foot treated from the outset in boot camp, I would be fine today. But, since I was threatened by my superiors multiple times and never given adequate medical attention by the Naval staff on base, my foot is now permanently messed up. I didn’t think I could use this to get out of the Marine Corps, for whatever reason, so I just told our company corpsman about it and she put me on TNPQ. It was at this point that my company commander called me during the off-time between drills to let me know how much of a bitch I am for not being able to pass a simple PFT with a little old foot injury, when there are Afghanistan veterans with prosthetic legs who can pass it no problem. Breaking point: reached.
I gathered up all the resources I could and found out I could in fact get medical separation for my injury. I never would have known this had I not done my own research, as our Doc didn’t feel that was pertinent information for me. I’m now in the process of being medically separated. I hate the Marine Corps.
Submitted by: “No, Thanks”