Monday, June 3, 2013

Wounded Times proven right by new research on Resilience

Wounded Times proven right by new research on Resilience
by Kathie Costos
Wounded Times Blog
June 3, 2013

I get it and that should freak everyone out. I am an average person. I don't have a PHD. I do not get millions in research grants. As a matter of fact I am so average I still haven't figured out how to get enough donations to keep my head above water while working 70 hours a week 365 days a year. The real frightening thing is, I got it back in 2008 when I came out and said the training the military was doing was harmful. I got it even more when the next year I wrote that if the military pushed "resilience training" they would see an increase in suicides.
After tragedy, who bounces back? Keys to resiliency may lie in childhood
By Rebecca Ruiz, contributor
NBC News
June 2, 2013

After a tornado hit the Henryville, Ind., home of Stephanie Decker last year, injuring her so badly that both her legs had to be amputated, the 38-year-old mother of two knew she had to "push forward and thrive," she told NBC News. “If not only for myself, but also to show other amputees who have struggles of their own that the impossible is possible.”

Since that day in March 2012, Decker, known as "Tornado Mom," has become famous for her resiliency and spirit. She's now a motivational speaker and has created a foundation to help other amputees.

As the nation recovers from recent tragedies in Boston and Oklahoma, "resiliency" has become the buzzword for recovery, a promise to rebound made almost before the full emotional impact of a disaster has been absorbed. Studies have shown that the majority of trauma survivors do go on to lead happy, productive lives -- but not everyone.

Emerging research on the biology of resilience suggests a person’s ability to recover – or risk of spiraling into depression -- may depend on an elusive combination of early life experiences, genetics and brain chemistry. In fact, recovering from trauma or heartbreak is a far more complicated response than scientists once thought, says Dr. Farris Tuma, chief of the Traumatic Stress Research Program at the National Institute of Mental Health.

“This is the Holy Grail – to understand what makes people resilient,” Tuma said.

Social relationships, faith, health and financial stability are factors in resilience, while negative childhood experiences, such as trauma, abuse and chronic stress, can prime the body to react to both major hardship and everyday setbacks with the same degree of fear and panic.

But not all victims of trauma are able to bounce back as Decker has.

read more here

This is from 2008 and posted with the question, "Is Battlemind better than nothing?"

Battlemind skills helped you survive in combat, but may cause you problems if not adapted when you get home.

Although 89% of Soldiers report receiving suicide prevention training, only 52% of Soldiers reported the training to be sufficient, indicating the need to revise the suicide prevention training so that it is applicable in a combat environment.
It was followed up by this Excuse my language but BattleMind is Bullshit! Everything I was seeing and hearing from the veterans given this training told a much different story than what the military was saying and it was obvious for one simple reason. This average person paid attention.

Last year after spending many years working with families after it was too late to help their veteran heal, I agreed to write THE WARRIOR SAW, SUICIDES AFTER WAR. They wanted their stories told but above that, they wanted someone to finally tell the truth about what was going on with this training. What I discovered was sickening. Billions spent every year by multiple government agencies and no one held accountable for any of it. Parents were visiting graves of soldiers who were supposed to have been safely back home and not being in more danger than during war.

They were reading what research was contained on Wounded Times and they knew why their lives turned out the way they did. They also discovered they were not responsible for the suicide. We were. They could finally stop blaming themselves and start blaming people defending resilience training.

As part of Point Man International Ministries we address the spiritual healing in small groups. There you have the spiritual and social support. We cannot help with the financial needs because most of us are operating out of our pockets. We don't have a powerful PR agency behind us. The kicker is, this approach was understood in 1984 when Vietnam Veterans were back home and in a lot of pain. The same pain we see in the eyes of the OEF and OIF veterans. Nothing has changed. War is still war and basic human needs are the same. PTSD has been researched since the 70's but it is almost as if nothing was learned if you read the press reports. Again, leaders of Point Man are average people but we have above average understanding of what it takes to heal.