CHL Application with Bipolar II

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hannahbell
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CHL Application with Bipolar II

#1

Post by hannahbell » Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:14 pm

Sorry to make my first post here a complicated one but I'm hoping y'all can help me with some questions I've had. I've been planning on getting my CHL license this fall, and currently, my fiance and I are planning on doing the CHL class in September for our dating anniversary. However, I know there is a preclusion for applicants that have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I was wondering if anyone here has any experience with going through the application process with bipolar, and getting the exceptions and everything. I did some searching but most posts are from people in the same position as me, as opposed to people who have actually tried for their license. I did find one post from a member here, moodyamber, that addressed her experience with it, but that was from 2007 and I was wondering if anyone had gone through the process more recently so I could get some insight into how things are likely to go.

Some pertinent details:

I'm diagnosed with bipolar type 2, which is generally accepted as the mild version of bipolar. I've never been hospitalized or even come close to needing hospitalization, and since my diagnoses and beginning of treatment years ago, I've had no relapses or episodes. I do take a daily medication, but its been a consistent dosage for a long time and has shown no signs of reduced efficacy, and is a medication that generally doesn't lose efficacy anyways. In psychiatric terms, my condition is considered extremely well managed with no adjustments to treatment likely to be needed in the future. Even in the event that I do have an onset of an episode, it would be a gradual, noticeable occurrence and I would have the wherewithal to take measures to make sure I wouldn't be a risk to myself or any others around me. Bipolar, particularly bipolar type 2, doesn't come with any loss of touch with reality like the other disorders on the list of conditions that require extra steps, though I can understand the need for extra legal measures for licensing since the mood swings can be extreme for many people.

My psychiatrist is more than willing to write me a letter stating with the above info stating that I'm of sound mind and unlikely to have any future problems (I asked her just the other week since I still have to go in monthly for my ADD scrip--silly drug restrictions). If I'm correct, this will allow me to still get a license in spite of the bipolar diagnosis, right? The language is a little confusing in the statute, but since Texas is a shall-issue state, if I had the letter and no other disqualifying issues, I would be issued a license, correct?

Assuming this letter is accepted with no issues, it's my understanding that DPS will provide a questionnaire for my doctor to fill out. Is this accurate? What sorts of questions and so forth will be on this questionnaire? How much of my medical history needs to be disclosed? I can't find anywhere online that goes into detail on this at all, just a couple passing mentions about the paperwork. A link to an online version of this questionnaire would be amazing if anyone knows of one, my googling hasn't been fruitful.

Does past gun history have any weight with how much difficulty I'm likely to face from DPS? I've been around guns my entire life, learned gun safety early, had my hunting license for a few different years (complete with the safety course), did my M9 and M16 qualifications for ROTC in college (complete with expert scores!), and have owned guns for years with no problems or incidents. Do I have the opportunity to state any of this on my application to make my case for getting my CHL? Or can I attach an affidavit to that effect? I could also ask my psychiatrist about putting it in her letter, but since she would have no first hand verification on any of that, I'm not sure she would do it, or if her word would even count on it if she did.

How long does this whole delay the licensing timeline? Is this something I need to go through for renewals to verify my condition is still managed or is it a one-time approval? If I get declined in spite of everything, is there an appeals process or am I SOL?

If relevant, I also have no criminal history whatsoever apart from a speeding ticket in 2006 that I plead no contest to (Fairfield, TX is a dumb speedtrap). In general, if it weren't for the bipolar I believe I would be a model candidate for CHL.

I know it seems like this hurdle should discourage me from getting my CHL, but I would really like to get one in spite of the difficulties. I jog a lot at night and my rottweiler is getting a bit too old to tag along which makes me more leery of going out. And since I got promoted to management at work, I end up closing a lot by myself at night, with the cash deposit and everything. My job is in a nice area of town, but you never know. Plus as a woman, one always worries about rapists so some peace of mind on that front never hurts. I've got the shotgun under the bed in case of home invasion, but a gun at home only protects at home.

If you've stuck with me til now, thanks for taking the time to read my way-too-long post. I really do want to get an idea of what I'm facing before I drop the money on the classes and application fee, and I want to make sure I'm doing everything possible to ease the application process. I know gun ownership for bipolar people is a polarizing topic (haha), but any opinions or experiences would be greatly appreciated, even if it's just to tell me you think I'm a hopeless case.

Edit: If anyone wants to share but remain private, feel free to PM me. I promise I won't share anything told in confidence.
Last edited by hannahbell on Thu Jul 03, 2014 6:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.


TomV
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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#2

Post by TomV » Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:59 pm

No answers here, only encouragement. Best wishes to you.
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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#3

Post by Saffron » Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:19 pm

If you get the letter you have a chance. See (f) on page 7. http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/internetfo ... CHL-16.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#4

Post by Pawpaw » Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:20 pm

healthinsp wrote:No answers here, only encouragement. Best wishes to you.
:iagree:

hannahbell, I believe yours is the first post of this type I've seen that didn't read like it was written by a pipolar sufferer who was right on the edge. Yours is an articulate and well reasoned statement.

Unfortunately, I doubt anyone here is going to be able to give you any concrete answers. Those can only come from DPS, and then only while going through the process. As I understand it (and that's not saying much), your application will be sent for a medical review. Those are the folks you'll have to convince.

Again, best wishes and welcome to the forum!
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hannahbell
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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#5

Post by hannahbell » Thu Jul 03, 2014 6:41 pm

Thank you for the well wishes, they are appreciated. I know that ultimately going through the process will be the best way to find out these answers, but I am hoping there will be someone here with some first-hand experience. These forums look very active, and bipolar is not as rare as one might think so I'm pretty hopeful. That said, if anyone would prefer to PM me instead of replying here, I will keep anything told to me private.

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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#6

Post by C-dub » Thu Jul 03, 2014 7:31 pm

HannahBell, I also don't know of anyone in your shoes that has tried. I know some that are interested, but think they will be denied, so don't even try. I wish you all the luck and if you go ahead and apply, I hope you succeed. Please let us know the outcome. Hopefully, you will be the resident expert soon and will be the one with first hand information to impart on the rest of us. :thumbs2:
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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#7

Post by WildBill » Sun Jul 06, 2014 8:32 am

Saffron wrote:If you get the letter you have a chance. See (f) on page 7. http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/internetfo ... CHL-16.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
:iagree: This will be a tough one, but I agree that, with a letter, she has a chance.

The DPS medical board will review the application, but a letter from the OPs psychiatrist, who has an actual first-hand medical relationship with the patient, could be the deciding factor that could tip the scales in her favor.
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jamesmcdonald3882
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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#8

Post by jamesmcdonald3882 » Mon Oct 15, 2018 9:53 pm

Im curious on your outcome?


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Re: CHL Application with Bipolar II

#9

Post by OneGun » Tue Oct 16, 2018 12:08 am

jamesmcdonald3882 wrote:
Mon Oct 15, 2018 9:53 pm
Im curious on your outcome?
Since the OP has not logged on in over four years, I doubt she will respond.
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