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NEW INITIATIVE: “Tell Me About Your Day.”

Our affiliated web sites, www.UtVet.com and CelebrateLife4Veterans.org, are launching a new effort to end suicide.

We are leveraging an idea hatched by MIT freshman, Izzy Lloyd. We are distributing white wristbands that say TMAYD. We want to reach at risk people with respect and support. We begin by saying “Tell me about your day.” It’s not prying or rude.  This is just a way of reassuring folks that we are willing to take some time and just listen. We don’t need to fix anything and we don’t need all the answers. It’s not therapy or another program. It’s friendship.

Check out TMAYD.org.

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#ThePowerof1

From the video description:
One small act can make a big difference in the life of a Veteran or Service member in crisis. “The Power of 1,” a public service announcement from the Veterans Crisis Line, shows how taking the time to reach out can be the first step to getting those who served the support they need. A single action — one call, one chat, one text, one conversation — can have a significant impact.

The Veterans Crisis Line connects Veterans or Service members in crisis, as well as their families and friends, with qualified, caring U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential, toll-free hotline, online chat, and text-messaging service. Veterans and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat, or text to 838255 to receive confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

Reach out. One call can open the door to support.

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Circles4Hope: Community Suicide Prevention Service Model

HOPE Squads: Hold on. Persuade. Empower.

Hope4Utah has developed a suicide prevention model that is proving successful in preventing suicides. They’ve tested its effectiveness in schools. We think it could help prevent Veteran suicide as well. Watch their video and comment below. What do you think?

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Resources for Someone Dating A Person with PTSD

This post first appeared on UtVet.com here and DateHookup.com here.

Our friend Kaylee Thompson sent along this resource from
DateHookup.com.  Thanks Kaylee and tell your Dad, “Welcome Home. Thanks for your service to the nation.”  aw

PTSD, or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, can affect almost anyone and symptoms can show up at any age. Most people suffer from PTSD as a result of some kind of traumatic event or time period in their life, such as domestic violence, rape or other sexual assault, familial violence, an automobile or airplane accident, war, terrorism, or some other violent or unsettling event. (The most prevalent cause of PTSD in the US is car crashes which happen about every five minutes. Anyone can have PTSD. aw ) Natural disasters such as a volcano, earthquake, tornado, tsunami or hurricane can also trigger PTSD in many people.

While PTS directly affects the person who has been diagnosed, it can also have a serious impact on other people in their lives who are in a relationship with them. For those who are married to or dating someone dealing with PTSD, it can be a difficult road to travel and frustrating at times. Most people who deal with the problem of PTSD experience “reliving” the event unexpectedly, feel an almost constant sense of fear, have flashbacks of the episode, nightmares, and have a sense of being detached or distant from those they love. They often experience depression and anxiety, a mixture that be quite intrusive and in some cases even cost people their life. Some people also deal with physical problems such as nervous tics, antsy repetitive motions, headaches, muscle aches, and even dry mouth and blurred vision in some instances. The process for coping with PTSD is difficult one but those who understand it have a better chance at dealing with it and nurturing a long lasting relationship.

Sometimes, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can go undiagnosed for many years until the symptoms become so overwhelming that the patient cries out for help. Often it can take several years after a traumatic event has occurred for people to even experience the symptoms associated with it. For others, they may try to hide or mask their symptoms, hoping or believing it is not PTSD. Until the problem becomes intrusive in their life or affects their ability to work or function, it often goes untreated. Some anxiety medications are used to treat PTSD, and more often therapy is used to help people cope with the many symptoms PTSD can bring along with it.

Veterans are the most common group of people that typically deal with PTSD, but it can have an effect on women, children, and the elderly as well. There is no one criteria that a person must meet in order to be diagnosed with PTSD. This can vary on the severity of what they have dealt with as well as their own personal ability to handle it. For partners who live with someone suffering from PTSD, the journey can be difficult. Activities can be limited due to the person’s fear or the possibility that they may encounter a trigger that will spark an attack in public. Sleep can often be interrupted, since people suffering from PTSD usually deal with nightmares that can affect getting a good night’s sleep, and wake their partner up as well. It is important for spouses and friends of those suffering from PTSD to provide each other with support, nurturing, and understanding so that the patient can deal with everyday living.

Symptoms of PTSD

How PTSD is developed

Common triggers of a PTSD attacks

Potential dangers of PTSD attacks 

Ways to cope with and help your partner with PTSD 

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PTSD and Secondary Wounding

Excerpts from I Can’t Get Over It: A Handbook for Trauma Survivors by Aphrodite Matsakis, Ph.D. Also found here (and on UtVet).

As important to the healing process as other people are, it’s an unfortunate truth that some people do more harm than good. Strangers who don’t understand your situation can be unintentionally (or intentionally . . . aw.) cruel, but so can those who should know better: family, friends, and helping professionals. Instead of being supported, you have been made to feel ashamed of having been a part of the traumatic event in the first place, of your reactions to the event, or the symptoms you have developed as a result, or even for asking for help.

You may have heard, for example, “You weren’t hurt enough to be entitled to benefits,” or “It happened years ago. You should be over it by now.” Such attitudes exist even in the most obvious and horrendous cases of victimization.

Secondary wounding occurs when the people, the institutions, caregivers, and others to whom the survivor turns for emotional, legal, financial, medical, or other assistance respond in one of the following ways:  Continue reading “PTSD and Secondary Wounding”

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