The wars in the Middle East have mostly wound down. But many troops don’t leave the battle on the battlefield.
It’s Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Month, and thousands of military families live and care for a loved one still dealing with emotional trauma or traumatic brain injuries stemming from action in Iraq or Afghanistan. If you’re one of those families – or know someone who needs help – here is a list of resources that can help.
And as always, if you or someone you know needs to talk to someone immediately, call the Military Crisis Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or contact them online at militarycrisisline.net.
- USO Caregivers Conferences: Held on or near different military installations around the United States, these USO conferences discuss caregivers’ issues like resiliency, communication, compassion fatigue and how to talk to children after a parent has been injured.
- PTSD Coach:The Department of Veterans Affairs has a website and app called PTSD Coach that aims to help troops and veterans manage issues like anger, sleep and trauma triggers.
- USO/Stronger Families Oxygen Seminars: This Bothell, Wash.-based nonprofit helps couples – especially military couples affected by injuries or long separations – open the lines of communication. Their Oxygen Seminars have become a key partner program of USO Warrior and Family Care.
- Family readiness officers, family support groups and family support centers: While some may be more robust than others, every branch of the military has family support services. These officers and groups are huge information resources. Contact your command to find out what groups are available for your family.
- Aggregate lists: The Washington Post has an easy-to-navigate rundown of warning signs, benefits and services and how to find help.
- And if in doubt: Call the Military Crisis Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or contact them online at militarycrisisline.net.