To work with veterans and help veterans, one does not have to be a veteran. What one has to do is learn to speak the language, so that they know you understand what they are saying, and demonstrate that you are someone that can be trusted to understand what they have been through. In today’s military, troops are frequently deployed overseas, and many are deployed to combat zones multiple times in a typical four-year enlistment. Even those who are not in a combat role or direct support of a combat unit can count on being deployed frequently. These deployments bring a great deal of stress to the service member and to the families of the service member. In a combat role, there is the omnipresent risk involved, so the service member has to be keyed up and focused all the time for months on end. Typical deployments last six to fifteen months, so imagine being vigilant and on edge, broken only by periods of extreme boredom or extreme terror, for six to fifteen months! What would that be like for you? So it’s no small wonder that so many veterans and active-duty personnel struggle with post-traumatic stress and depression.
Stories give form and meaning to our lives