Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Saving Veterans Is Not In Awareness, It Is In The Works

Talking Does Nothing When You Haven't Listened
Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
October 4, 2017

If someone is hungry, do you give them sand to eat or do you give them food? If a veteran lost hope, do you make them aware of so many others who also lost hope, and then took their own lives, or do you give them hope they can heal PTSD?



That is the situation going on with thousands of groups running around, screaming about how they are raising awareness about suicides, yet offer nothing meaningful.

Some just want the fame and pats on their backs. Some just want money. Others seem like they want to help. The trouble is, they think the answer is talking about things they do not understand instead of leading the lost to people who can help.

PTSD is complicated. After 35 years it hasn't gotten any easier for me to get through to people who want to help but fall for whatever is popular on Facebook and other social media groups. Unless we change what is being passed off as help, we'll see more and more deaths because they will become as common as the number folks assume is all there is.

The trouble is, veterans assume that is all there is for them too.

Healing PTSD is not going to happen talking about it, especially when a slogan is used instead of people bothering to read the reports, or even simply understanding that many states do not have military service on their death certificates, thus, leaving veterans out of the total.

How many veterans have been left out of the "22" or "20 a day" all this "awareness raising" is for? Hint, most states put the rate at double the civilian rate for suicides. CDC puts suicides at 42,826, meaning we're probably talking about over 26,000 veterans a year. Some states, like Florida say the rate is triple civilians.

What the VA does know is percentages. 65% of the veterans committing suicide (within the numbers they do know about) are over the age of 50. Did they matter enough for even honorable mention to all these "awareness raisers" making it seem as if they had a clue?

Do the current military members matter? Do they even have an idea how many take their own lives while serving this country? Hint, the DOD and the VA have separate totals.

Do the veterans still struggling between wanting to not wake up tomorrow know they can heal and there is hope out there for them, or do you leave them with the number of veterans who chose to not wake up again?

Are you ready to wake up and actually do the work to save their lives and give them hope or are you still passing on sand and calling it food?