In this gut-wrenching talk, Sergeant Andrew Chambers shares the haunting story of his time in Iraq and the tough transition home that landed him in jail. It’s a powerful testimony to the struggle our soldiers face when they come home, and the tragic ways that they can be denied the help they need.
For anyone looking to support a veteran, we encourage you to heed Chambers’s advice: "Find a veteran and listen to his story. A lot of us just need somebody to talk to."
Your sacrifice and those your loved ones and family are not forgotten. To all our veterans out there, and those not here, thank you.
While I disagree with US Military actions, this is why I wish nothing but the best for our veterans.
PTSD is a lot to take in.
I have PTSD from non-military trauma. I can only imagine how much harder dealing with it is for someone with military trauma - the overall severity of the disorder, and the way that survival responses can seem totally disproportionate in civilian environments. There are a lot of ways you can help a loved one with PTSD.
- Help them create a safe space where they can go when they are feeling particularly vulnerable or recovering from a flashback or panic attack. Never enter that space without their express permission.
- Pick a code word - if you are out in public together and a situation becomes too stressful for them, they can say that codeword and you will help them get out. Sometimes that may mean running interference with others while they go somewhere quieter to collect themselves, sometimes it may mean getting them home so they can go to their safe space.
- Never ever push. If they say they don’t want to talk, respect that. Let them know you will listen when they are ready and then don’t bring it up again.
- Listen, listen, listen. Don’t just pay attention to what they’re saying, pay attention to their body language as they say it and as they interact.
- Ask. Every person with PTSD has a different experience. Ask what they need. Not all of these suggestions apply to every person with PTSD so always ask.
- Let them know, however you let them know, that you are there to support them, listen, and care unconditionally.
"The M1 Garand has done more for this country than most politicians in Washington today." - Unknown
Evening Quickie #soldierporn: Nothing quick or easy about it.
U.S. Marines from Delta Company, Infantry Training Battalion (ITB), School of Infantry-East (SOI-E) receive instruction from combat instructors before navigating their way through the obstacle course aboard, Camp Geiger, N.C. Delta Company is the first company at ITB with female students as part of a measured, deliberate and responsible collection of data on the performance of female Marines when executing existing infantry tasks and training events, the Marine Corps is soliciting entry-level female Marine volunteers to attend the eight week basic infantryman and infantry rifleman training courses at ITB.
(Photos by USMC CWO2 Paul Mancuso, SOI-E, 4 OCT 2013.)