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Anyone Else Have Similar Experience: Shamed For Noncombat Ptsd.

Discussion in 'Military & Emergency Services' started by David2015, May 5, 2015.

  1. Whyteferret

    Whyteferret Well-Known Member

    Hi David.
    Shame can be part of PTSD. It doesn't matter what trauma you had in relation to getting PTSD. It can happen to anyone.
    Try not to take on that shame.
    tiredtexan likes this.
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  3. Big H

    Big H New Member

    For me, PTSD is now a clear family member, sometimes totally misunderstood, sometimes empathized with. PTSD's worst element for me was loss of perspective. I'm really level headed, but when bad can over think now.

    It's a long time ago when my true trigger occurred overseas, but if I'm honest that's helped. There's no magic cure dispite what professionals say, there's only the new family member to embrace, ( PTSD). I never did this until the past five years, and had lived with it on my own for almost 14 years before I acknowledged I needed to talk.

    Has it helped, maybe, but I'm a little resigned to being who I am now, not at all depressed about it, just it is what it is. My frustration lied at the door of professional services or employers, who have no idea how to manage PTSD sufferers generally, some exceptions are out there but I see so much stereotyping and unnecessary anxiety created through ignorance to the condition I just shake my head.

    Another question I ponder is why does combat PTSD have to be treated differently to non-combat ?, in the UK there's a national charity called combat stress, and it rarely accepts non-combat PTSD referrals, yet there's a true and real need for such access.

    Just throwing it out there, great thread & thanks

    Stickler likes this.
  4. Emptyhead

    Emptyhead Guest

    I no longer have friends because the only people feel I can trust are the brothers and sisters I trained with they were the ones that helped me when I lost myself to uncle Sam and learned that killing is just business, you don't have to hate them. Which makes it very hard for anyone that hasn't went through it to understand.
  5. Stickler

    Stickler I'm a VIP

    @ emptyhead...I imagine it helps to think of them as "it."

    My ex-guy was explicitly taught to think of his targets as "it" in sniping school and to compartmentalize the spray.

    Some vets do obviously resort to bigotry as a handy device, my paternal grandfather was a sort of malignant, naturally violent Archie Bunker...though I dunno if he came back from WW2 like that or went in like that. I know he was very proud of killing lots of Japanese...and I'm not going to use the word that starts with G, which is what he called them.

    Since I have to occasionally kill mortally injured animals, I would probably wrap my head around shooting someone trying to kill me as shooting a rabid animal.

    They were trying to kill you, or might possibly have been trying to kill you, or were in the wrong place at the wrong time-that being AROUND people who were trying to kill you.

    ...People who did not get severely sexually abused as a kid don't get what that's like. It's an awfully lonely thing too.
    tiredtexan and RavenGirl like this.
  6. Romeo

    Romeo New Member

    PTSD can come from any trauma, mine is both combat and non combat related, when I was deployed I had my experiences, but what made it worse was I came back stateside and had to do my daily duties as an MP that included exposures to another whole range of stressors and then I would deploy again I never had a break until I had a complete break down and was med boarded out. With PTSD you want to communicate experience and stressors with those similar to yours (don't expect a navy seal to identify with your stressors) but in general your symptoms will be similar and can talk with anyone suffering with this on coping and other techniques
    tiredtexan and Stickler like this.
  7. Whyteferret

    Whyteferret Well-Known Member

    Mine came from a sexual assault in the Marines.
    I usually don't tell anyone about it.
    Here's some responses that I have either seen or read or been told.
    "Women lie about it."
    "Women lie to get even with the man and mess up his career."
    "What did you expect?"
    "Women don't belong in the military."

    Now, add in the men who support the perpetrators because they're friends or whatever.
    Rumors about the woman and her sexual experiences
    Outright retaliation

    And I don't have "real" PTSD because it wasn't combat related.

    I left the Marines and went into the Army Reserve. I was eventually was medically retired because of the brain injury.m which triggered more serious PTSD symptoms. And the brain injury issues. But... It's not combat related.

    Don't get me wrong. I totally support and respect our deployed troops. I know PTSD is a serious problem. I just wish PTSD from anything else was taken as seriously.
    Abstract, RavenGirl and Stickler like this.
  8. David 2015

    David 2015 Guest

    thank you
  9. Glo809

    Glo809 Well-Known Member Donated

    I need time to comment, but you are not alone ...
  10. i have nightmares of war every night, though ive never been in combat, just last night i had a dream that i was returning home from combat. my father is a retired Army Ranger, decorated and had many combat missions. i enlisted into the usmc in 2007 and was medically discharged in 2007 due to a pre existing medical condition. i have what they call a funnel chest. MEPS knew of this condition and assured me i would be fine, although things were very difficult for me i still gave it my all. i ended up being place into the medical evaluation platoon and there i was torchered by other recruits and assaulted by a drill instructor for defending myself. the unit comander instructed me to sign a peice of paper so that i wouldnt sue them, or i would be sent to prison. ever since ive been home i havent felt the same. despite night sweats, and night terrors i feel an overwelming guilt and a failure to everyone, temped suicide but havent gotten the courage to actually do it yet, hopefully i never do but still my life is shattered since this experience. ive gone through two divorces lost contact with my children and keep myself away from my family so i dont have to face them as a failure. I feel no one cares about what happened or whats next, but they tore me down and never built me back up. idk how to deal with this and i dont think there is any help out there for me. never the less my recruiter miss spelled my name and changed one number in my ssn so that i could be enlisted, because they get a big bonus for enlisting guys and getting them all the way to training. so with that being said i was a fraudulent enlistment, but he was the one that did all my paperwork. My recruiter informed me that if i was questioned about it to deny knowledge, he said he would call it a type o. so if there is help out there let me know. I need it too.
  11. David2016

    David2016 Guest

    Just looked at this thread after many months of inactivity. I have been really doing my best in every way to heal and rise above the madness that is the struggle of PTSD. For the first time in years i'm starting to return to some sense of healthiness with somewhat of a piece of mind. I have been doing steady EMDR sessions and it's been a life changer for the better, EMDR has been amazing. It's still difficult to post, but after reading some of the posts I do have some things I would like to comment on. Also, I have received 100% disability from the VA, I honestly wonder if they fear a lawsuit, because it got approved and at 100% first time around "quickly" (1 and 1/2 years later).

    First off my original anger was 100% justified and healthy (discussing my anger in a safer environment instead of acting out as someone said), being true to myself and my feelings has allowed me to take that discipline I have and turn it into successful healing, while I still have a ways to go I have been leaps and bounds from were I started/fell and for the first time I believe there will be an end to the struggle someday, and I know i'll conquer this struggle enough to live my life hopefully sooner then later. Some reading this board might feel defensive because they view the military as a since of survival/pack mentality or family even, I hope you know I don't wish to hurt anyone anymore, and it was a defense mechanism in the first place, i'm coming to terms and moving on. At the same time don't be a hypocrite. The military attracts, promotes, and herd mentality enforces the degradation of its members all to some degree or more, I just happened to be that one soldier in 1000s who got hit alot harder. I'll get into some of those feelings later at the end. From my research militaries have been that way since the dawn of time whether it be "sodomy and the lash" in the British navy or ancient babylon/ur/greece (of course they didn't have as well developed manipulation of the human mind to the degree we have with modern science and psychological understanding).

    I have a spinal injury, PTSD, and had a TBI (traumatic brain injury *bleeding in the brain) as well as a few near death experiences that ended up with me waking up in a hospital ER and staying in bed for long ammounts of time with IV's hooked up to me from my experience with basic training. I was there for over 2 cycles, (6 months). Not to mention in basic I also had Mononucleosis and muscle degeneration in my shoulders (and no immune system afterwords) on top of the other experiences/illnesses I had.
    I was leading and one of the top trainees qualifying for an award during my first month and would have ended up being a promotion after basic/AIT, I was doing great...then after the negligence of some lazy seargants and those under them I got mono from a moldy canteen(in the first week which after a month beat my body down) I was forced to drink from which hadn't been cleaned properly after being used by God knows how many soldiers after budget cuts to cleaning supplies which didn't help either (but mainly negligence), as well as foreign translators from the middle east and a few other parts of the world that have old/difference strains of diseases. After I was given a month (which I spent sleeping all day to weak to get up) of CON leave (mono takes 3 months usually with how potent it was civilian side), I returned to basic training and was unable to continue do to a spine injury I recieved I believe a week before I left for CON leave, but I know for a fact it got A LOT worse after I came back.
    I had been given a free plane ticket back home for CON leave, one ticket was awarded each year for a soldier who qualified due to a medical illness. After my back was giving me enough pain the weeks I had returned I was urged to get a medical discharge by a chaplain and the commander of the base hospital, as well as a few civilian doctors from the ER, which in the space of 4 months I had been in the hospital/ER on multiple occasions. (which ended up being there "general unable to train or something of the like" discharge because a medical would have taken longer and out of fear I wanted to leave ASAP and I was bullied into it so uncle sam didn't have to give me medical benefits).
    The retired ranger who if I recall used to be a Master Seargant who worked for a local weapons contractor or was the head of that business civilian side I don't remember, he gave the award each year. Before I left for Con leave I was treated with respect from my peers, Drill Seargents, and First Seargant. I even gave a speech before I left to my whole platoon when I received the award/plane ticket telling them how grateful I was to be able to go home and heal (I wouldn't be able to afford it otherwise and I have a family to support), and that I couldn't wait to come back and continue training with them. More on him just down below...
    When I got back from my month of CON leave, I tried my best to push on despite my condition actually worsening. I was stubborn and wanted to make the over 200 years almost of recorded military history in my family to the United States of America proud, I wanted to be like my hero's (the military), most of all I wanted to be one myself and be the best medic one could be.
    The real trauma came in heavy when I took the advice after the 2nd 1/2 month or so and decided to accept an honorable discharge (which I was urged to apply for a medical discharge the first month after con leave but decided to stay and keep on, which I regret). When the Master Sergeant found out he drove his civilian pickup truck right up in front of the shitty trailers (which served as our barracks), which were a hazard btw (moldy showers with floors rotted out, winds over 20 MPH were deemed unsafe to the structure, ect), built in the 70s before the new "starships" (bigger baracks) they called them were built, but the government kept anyway. The retired ranger pulled his truck up infront of the barracks with the whole company inside, outside, and listening/watching through windows of the row of trailers, and he called me every name in the f*cking book, a coward, a pussy, told me how much of a low down reject I was for being in "his army", you get the point. The man shouldn't have even been allowed to be on the ground because it was against the rules for a training "atmosphere" to be "contaminated".
    After this civilian was done cussing me out and belittling me in front of over 340 of my peers, as the drill sergeants on duty were conveniently all in the command center down the street he had come out of earlier, I had my say back after taking as much as I could stand (which was ALOT this was a long winded one), the man threatened to make my life miserable and as he was about to degrade me for another 10 minutes I told him, tried to make him understand I couldn't physically go on with training, I finally spoke over him that time and told him were to shove his "army" and I had my say right back as far as being a "coward and traitor to army ideals".

    He drove his F250 truck down to the command center, came out 10minutes later (I never saw him after that again), and my Seargants called me in to inform me about some "medical" paperwork etc. I was put on "sick details" which worked me down past the point of exhaustion in the warehouse and other areas in/around Ft. Jackson, which were illegal I now know, inhumane, and against the doctors orders, which should have resulted in prison time and/or discharges for at least some of those in-charge. After that the physical beatings, mental degration, and forced labor ALL AGAINST MULTIPLE DOCTOR ORDERS and military code of ethics to a level I still can't talk about yet occurred over the next 3 1/2 months - 4 months continuously. After they through out my back the first time out of the 4 times it was thrown, I started having the nightmares at night and started peeling the inside of my cheek flesh off with my molars while I was sleeping having vivid dreams of enemies and training and other things I didn't understand at the time. During that time period not only did I get turned down proper medical care, but these things happened to me:
    1. I was refused proper medical care and given HEAVY pain pills, and sent to a chiropractor WITHOUT a MRI.
    2. Had a hip stress fracture in month 4 of training while on doctors orders to not stand or walk for more then 10minutes.
    3. I got frostbite on my feet and only 1 meal for almost 14 hours that day when I was ordered to "watch the gear on the concrete drill pad" whiteout a battle buddy or supervision, much less bathroom break and most of all proper winter gear.
    4. I was threatened and lied to (I didn't know about JAG or the fact it was a lie at the time) saying if I didn't complete tasks they asked me to I would be article 15d and sent to prison as well as have pay deducted (which I needed for my family back home as well).
    5. Watched and was degraded in a MULTITUDE of ways most of which were focused all specifically on me and intentional as my company finished all there training, and it continued even long after the cycle was over. (The other discharges took 1-3 weeks, mine took 3 1/2-4 months longer then the other 20-30 discharges)
    6. Was forced to work numerous work details, some of which with my medical issues and back pain/injury I was forced to lift objects at a near continuous rate weighing in anywere from 40 pounds to 140 pounds. Example: Those heavy gun racks in the maintenance/repair factory at Ft. Jackson that are loaded with the old M16s/M4s, and other gear.
    7. I was put off of doctor appointments that were made for me, and was not allowed to speak to my captain of the company or first sergeant conveniently, or if I did they talked down my throat for less then 60seconds for one thing or another, and I had no say so. I would point out the whole time I was in basic I NEVER DISOBEYED A SINGLE ORDER.
    The list goes on and gets A LOT worse, but I can't steady my hands even after a break to write them down.

    The degradation and torture I felt physically and mentally, was so inhumane by the 4th out of 6th or so month my heart accepted hate. By the 5th month or 6th I had given up internally, I couldn't raise my head or eyes, they had finally broken me. During the time at basic training I was also refused for a small amount of time my Bible as well, thanks to my atheist Drill Seargant. Luckily I had one drill sergeant out of the 6-7 in my company who was a human being and even though he was transferred out half way through basic, he made sure I got to some of my appointments and got my Bible, to that man I pray he receives some kind of blessing in some form overall. By the 5th month I was in basic I felt like Cool Hand Luke when he was beat down in the ditch, I just wish that's all I had to do was dig my own gave at the time, it would have been easier.

    I hope my story even being incomplete and only the lighter parts written can help someone else in the struggle/aftermath military or not.

    As for all you proud war vets out there who shame those with non-combat or basic training PTSD, I urge you to rethink your view on those like myself, especially if you want compassion then show some, when you left some of us out in the cold, or your "brothers" inflicted pain on us in a multitude of ways, us who looked up to you even from the time we were small ones and wanted to carry on in your footsteps, it's not right. And if you won't change your hardened prideful hearts because you have the man-boy mentality which is probably why you joined in the first place to prove you weren't a weak male who couldn't get "laid" or were afraid of living in normal society and wanted to flee your parents arms into Uncle Sams most likely with something to prove because YOU were picked on as a child, well then to hell with you, as far as i'm concerned, I HAVE MORE GRIT, GUTS, AND COURAGE THEN THE MAJORITY OF YOU SHAMING, COWARDLY, WEAK BASTARDS, and this PTSD survivor WILL prove it.

    I will recover,
    I will march on,
    I will overcome,
    I will live a meaningful healthy life.
  12. Ka-9

    Ka-9 Active Member

    David, I was in the military for years, and got out....because it was a gigantic cluster.. "fest" in the early 90's and everybody in the military knew that. I went police and ended up in the most "active" spot you could possibly want. I re-joined the military years after that, becuase I was feeling shitty knowing there were deployments starting to Afghanistan. But I realized there was no f*cking way I was leaving my dog behind, so in the end, I stayed with my responsibiltiy and just served reserve. I even tried to re-join 3 years ago- post PTSD, due to guilt, so I get what you're feeling.

    During my time policing- I saw women so abused and battered they were pure shells, kids molested like machines, and girls sexually assaulted in alleys that were so traumatized, it literally scared me (one still vividly haunts me). I feel absolutely shit now- that I never put PTSD together then/even knew the extent of PTSD, and couldn't give them the real assistance they deserved. Those people deserve EVERY bit of respect as a combat veteran (or cop for that matter). If I know anything by now, trauma is trauma.... and everyone has different breaking points, fears/vulnerabilities, capacity to recover.

    If someone thinks they are "special PTSD", then just let them be special, and steer round em' is my humble opinion. For me, I don't judge, I've seen too many traumatized, decent people.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2016
    tiredtexan, Zoogal and Trinket like this.
  13. Glo809

    Glo809 Well-Known Member Donated


    I am in the non combat as ptsd goes but there is one of these *

    As I am settling into the mind set that this is now part of my life, I'm having a difficult time to define my foe.

    I will post my opinion in a week or so after a wee bit of more research.

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