June 9, 2011

Caregivers Need to Learn the Signs of Burnout and Secondary PTSD

You are not alone; welcome home to our veteran’s means something more profound then setting foot back on our homeland. For the combat veteran returning from war does not mean it’s a done deal; coming home. I tell a veteran welcome home to honor their continued sacrifice; the visions of war will never leave us and sometimes they swim in a deluge that reigns.

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The panic attacks you are receiving are an attunement to the survival instinctual part of us; you have been programmed to react rather than rationalize in the moment. The deluge is the snapping in and out of reality; flashbacks, hallucinations, delusional thinking, the extreme dissociative features of Combat PTSD. The symptomology for chronic combat PTSD or Complex PTSD (CPTSD) has many similarities to Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID).

Switching of personalities to suit the situation, thus the veteran will exhibit extreme characteristics not otherwise in line with "person we knew before war" (Dissociation of the Personality in Complex Trauma-Related Disorders and EMDR: Theoretical Considerations, p. 81-82). In combat we must compartmentalize our spirit or soul, our happiness, compassion, empathy and our humanity. We must demonize our enemy so that we may kill them. Later, coming to terms with taking lives, we trip over our Combat Values Structure; which does not fit in the civilian world. So, we make our home the war zone. Because, believe it or not. We know how to survive in here, outside those doors is a foreign world trying to invade. That's the world you live in now; I see you. You do not have to be ruled by it anymore. You can learn to take care of your veteran AFTER you take care of yourself first!

Go to a retreat for family members, such as When War Comes Home Retreat. There is a way out from under the oppressive emotions that chain us to our past; we survived not because we are weak. God put you on this path. What are you going to do with it?

Go to FamilyofaVet.com to learn more about the symptoms and signs of Secondary PTSD. Family of a Vet and Combat PTSD Blogger are partnering to bring together local resources that may not be available in your area; we aim to become that resource. If you would like to help click the link below and join us.

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