Saturday, January 16, 2016

PTSD Awareness Raisers Need to Go F Themselves

Real PTSD Awareness is Priceless
Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
January 16, 2016

All of the "awareness raisers" need to just go F themselves and stop long enough to learn what has already been disproven.  "F" themselves as in fund themselves the same way I have done it for over 30 years.  I have a job that pays my personal bills and donate my time, which is usually well over 40 hours a week.

Actually if you were thinking the "F" stood for the other four letter word, you're partly right. I lose a couple of thousand a year. Which is really nothing considering how many hours I put in, so I can assure you that raising awareness is priceless but far from expensive.

Wounded Times reaches over a thousand readers a day. This will give you a better idea and these counts are from before 9:00 am for the day.

But it isn't just veterans from the USA learning the truth.

Everyday my email box is full of folks raising money so they can "do something" to raise awareness about PTSD and suicides. Frankly they don't have a clue what is real. They focus on what they read with an easy internet search. They can't even answer basic questions.

Providing real awareness is a lot of work and research.  Veterans have no clue that while it is true there is no cure for PTSD, it can be defeated.  With the right help and a lot of work, they can heal enough to live a better quality of life and tomorrow can actually be better than than today is.

How about all these folks wanting to do something actually start with that? Do you think it would give veterans hope enough to survive at home after finding it easier to survive combat itself? Ya think?

Ok, so what I do, I do without funding. Sure, I'm trying to raise some money to replace my worn out camera after over 200 videos, but that's it. My regular job pays my bills but my vocation helping veterans and families does not need funding. I've been struggling to do that for a long time but not getting donations hasn't stopped me from doing the work. Not even being used by folks promising me they would help me get the truth out there then letting me down after countless hours helping them with what they wanted to do.  (Hence the sour taste for all the talkers.)

Good intentions have not translated into good outcomes.  That is clear when we see the numbers of veterans committing suicide go up as well as bank accounts of the "awareness raisers" saying they want to do something about all this. There "something" has not changed anything for veterans.

Here in Florida there is a fundraiser at the American Legion Post 117 for "Fight22" with the wrong number of "22 a day" veterans committing suicide yet the banner is about "Counseling to Careers" leaving me to wonder what they are doing about suicides. Do they think they commit suicide because they don't have jobs?

If you try to find "Fight 22" you will only find the fundraiser information. You have to look for "Counseling to Careers" and there you find their mission statement.
It is the mission, purpose and duty of the Renew Healing Counseling to Careers Project to Address, diagnose, and treat returning U.S. Veterans and their families, with the objective of giving them better focus, identifying their strengths (mentally, physically, experience and education), thereby creating a pathway to successful civilian Careers.

So what do they know about PTSD or suicides? The fact is every state, including Florida, reports veterans commit suicide double the civilian population. The vast majority of those veterans are over the age of 50. "Suicide at Bay Pines shows pain among older veterans" reported by The Tampa Tribune had this,
Nearly 70 percent of all veteran suicides were among people 50 and older, according to the study, compared to less than 40 percent among those 50 and older who did not serve.
and in the same article
Since 2012, 54 veterans who were patients of the Bay Pines VA Medical System took their own lives, according to spokesman Jason Dangel. Nearly 700 veterans during that period attempted suicide.

Yep, the ones no one is talking about. Yet they also used the "22 a day" figure even though the VA report offered a disclaimer the numbers were an average from 21 states using limited data.

Using the suicide data from the CDC, that actually translates to about 73 veterans committing suicide everyday.

Another Weekend event to raise money for PTSD
Organizer Tim Earley says he lost 3 friends recently from PTSD-related suicides and the community has to step in and do something.
So what's the plan? What is the purpose of the money? What are the qualifications of the people involved? Why do they need the money? That's the billion dollar question since Americans have donated billions a year for "doing something" to change the outcome that hasn't changed at all. Their intentions may be good but then so are the other 400,000 veterans charities out there but nothing has changed for the veterans still taking their own lives and being omitted from the discussion.

I spent over three decades, not just researching PTSD but living with it. So it is personal to me and not just something I do.  It is my life! What is worse in all this is the simple fact that groups established decades ago have had our voices drowned out simply because we're doing the work instead of working for funding.

Think about all that the next time you see a GoFundMe campaign and you think of clicking on the "donate" button.

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