I Didn’t Recognize My Own Need for Counseling…

By • Oct 13th, 2009 • Category: Civilian Support, Combat Stress, Communication, Guard/Reserve Issues, Post-Deployment, Relationships
Here’s some powerful testimony from SSG Eddie Black, a veteran of the Marine Corps (Desert Storm) and the Oregon National Guard (OIF2) about his return from combat. Eddie now gives free talks for veterans on PTSD. You can email him here.

When I got back from Iraq, all I wanted to do was go see my girl. I only wanted to go home. I felt fine. I felt okay. I missed my home. And the presentations and talks that the VA, chaplains, and others gave to us during our demob went in one ear and out the other. It didn’t connect with any of us. None of us did It wasn’t until months later that I went to a counselor, not for myself, but to get information to take back to some of my fellow soldier in the company, several of whom were drinking heavily, taking pills, having relationship problems. As someone who was training in psychology I recognized the need around me for intervention. However, I did NOT recognize the need in my own self. It was in the act of helping others that I saw how much I myself needed therapy. I was very quick to anger, could not concentrate, could not enjoy a concert or a 4th of July, took everything too seriously . ..”



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is of the opinion that re-deployment is harder than deployment itself. The year Paul and I spent apart was tough, but nothing could have prepared me for trying to come back together again. Homecoming was full of challenges I never expected - no matter how many books I read!
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