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Making Sense of the Senseless

The US Department of Veteran Affairs and the Veterans Administration have sent out an email cautioning mental health providers that the withdraw from Afghanistan may trigger PTSD symptoms in our military active duty as well as veterans. The article compares the emotional fallout for veterans returning from the war in Afghanistan to the war in Vietnam. Many military personnel may question their mission in Afghanistan, their sacrifices, and their commitment to serve considering the recent events. They may feel discouraged, defeated, and dishearten and fall into despair. The decisions of others may negatively impact our military personnel and we need to be ready to stand beside them and remind them of the pride we have for them.

We love our military personnel.

We serve them to the best of our ability in order that they may continue to serve our nation. They need encouragement and now more than ever they need to know we as a nation care about them. I recall the Vietnam era and how our military were shamed when they returned from a war that served no purpose. It was sad how they were attacked in airports, spit on, and called names they didn't deserve. Many of our military suffered more pain and heartache upon their return to American than they suffered in the face of war. Let's not repeat history and do this to them again.

How can we support them?

Love them. Embrace them. Cry with them if they need to cry, listen if they need to talk. When they are angry, realize it's not you who they are mad at but the circumstances they cannot control. They are morning the loss of time, the loss of honor, and the loss of friends who gave their lives. They may isolate, drink, or walk away. Get them help as soon as possible if they are spiraling down and out of control.

Here is a list of resources provided by the VA. Call Encouragers if you have questions concerning your specific situation. We are here to serve you.

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