Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
And our duty as Americans
By: David Beach
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is something that you and your friends may not know much about. The truth is unless you have direct experience with soldiers who have participated in combat, or a situation of great tragedy, you may not have even heard of PTSD. Unfortunately PTSD is something that is overlooked by more than just the general population. The problem lies in the government and those responsible for the care of PTSD victims, specifically soldiers, because the funding and care needed simply isn’t there.
PTSD is a fairly recent mental disease. Diagnosed and accepted officially in 1980s, it’s known that PTSD has been around for centuries. PTSD is an emotional illness that develops when a person is exposed to a highly dangerous, very terrifying, possibly life-threatening event. Obviously this disease tends to affect soldiers much more than the general population. Before recognized as a disease PTSD was looked down upon and soldiers were shunned for showing symptoms. This brought about a negative stereotype to PTSD that is still seen today. As Americans, shouldn’t we know better than that? Seriously, are we shunning the defenders of our country that are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice everyday they wake up? The American people can do better than that, and we owe it to our soldiers to eliminate this public negative stereotype.
It will not be acceptable to see a similar Post-Vietnam welcoming of our soldiers today. The weight and punishment that Vietnam veterans dealt with from the public was a disgrace to the millions of young men who sacrificed everything during that war. Veterans of Vietnam would come back from the war with severe cases of PTSD, only to be laughed at and turned away when trying to find help. This can’t happen with the soldiers of today’s America....