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PTSD, the invisible wound.

Created on: 04/10/12 04:58 PM Views: 4530 Replies: 1
PTSD, the invisible wound.
Posted Tuesday, April 10, 2012 04:58 PM

The sad part about many of the tough lessons we learned in Vietnam are all of the young men returning home after facing the same shit in Iraq & Afghanistan today. I read a statistic recently from an article that stated there are approx. 18,000 American veterans from the Vietnam war who are still living on the streets. And there are 16,000 vets of the Gulf war, Iraq & Afghanistan who are living on the streets today and that number is rapidly rising as troops are returning home with no counseling, no jobs and no visible means to support themselves or their family.

Why can't the military provide a comprehensive mental health treatment program for all returning combat vets? You know, a mandatory period of R & R/recovery after military combat/service designed to help vets deal with all the ugliness and atrocities they witnessed during war? Perhaps something similar to a peace corps, helping less fortunate people at a time of need, only in reverse and after military service. A peace corps involving less work and more time to unwind, relax, and decompress with other vets. A time to get away from their own problems by working with people struggling through difficult times like Hurricane Katrina, the tsunami in japan, etc., and learn to feel again for others and themselves. That kind of giving would make a huge difference in the lives of those in need and help vets have empathy and better understanding of how they feel. Time to learn how to laugh, to cry, to heal and ways to find joy in each and every day. Time to learn that life is a gift

The cumulative wisdom learned over the last 150 years in American history clearly defines the outcome of living through atrocities without concentrated effort to  decompress, receive psychological treatment and therapy, eventually turns into PTSD at some point in the future. Look at police department procedures. If an officer is involved in a single shooting, they are automatically taken out of the field for a period of time and required to see a therapist. When the therapist determines they've put the incident behind them, only then are they allowed to return to duty. What about the veterans of war who must push all of those horrific experiences down and keep on pushing through for an entire year or longer?

PTSD, the invisible wound of war, left untreated is far worse than than many other wounds that are treated and allowed to heal over time. PTSD can destroy not only the lives of the victims but, their careers, health, marriages, families, and happiness.

Steven A. Pierce

Semper Fi

RE: PTSD, the invisible wound.
Posted Friday, October 5, 2012 07:05 PM

You are on point I have talked to a number of Vietnam Vets that have only been diagnoised in the past few years. They have suffered far too long and you are absolutely right about about providing a cooling of period. I have mentioned this to a number of people, and they generally agree with this idea.

I have learned that although all of us went to war and we were the best warriors we could be. However, the affect of the war was unique to each and everyone of us and our capacity to deal, cope and/or endure that experience is uniquely individualized.

I hope that more brothers will read your posting and give their feedback.

Sgt. Powells