When I read the words, “What about the spouse”, from a spouse married to a veteran who suffers from PTSD and/or TBI, I knew that feeling all too well. It appears these strong and caring spouses are often forgotten.
Our organization does not take away the bravery and courage our veterans who suffer from PTSD and/or TBI from the invisible wounds of war; we applaud them. And we sincerely love them for their sacrifice and commitment to our Country.
Our focus is not to forget about the needs of our veterans, actually; it is because of them, or one of the reasons for our organization. Many of the spouses are caregivers, and when the caregiver is not cared for, our veterans will not receive the love, compassion, and patience needed to contribute to the healing for their PTSD and/or TBI.
I am sure many of you have been on a flight, and we get to watch and listen to the flight attendants demonstrate to us on how to put on the air mask in case it’s needed during a flight. And if we are traveling with a child or someone with a disability; the flight attendant tells us that we need to place the air mask over our face and nose first, before we attempt to help anyone that is traveling with us. Why? Because we are no good to those we love, if we don’t take care of ourselves first.
Did you know that without the proper self-care and counseling, the spouse is at risk and more likely to be diagnosed with secondary PTSD? This brings on added stress to an already over-stressed environment.
I applaud the many needed organizations that assist veterans on the road to healing and hope for their traumatic experiences from war. We must also bring healing and hope to those spouses who care for them, and at times feel alone, overwhelmed, unloved, and hopeless due to the invisible wounds of war to those they love.
Therefore, we are in existence. We would like to bring unity, love, hope, and less stress to those caregivers who need counseling, self-care, outside employment, and to join them with a group of people who share the same parallel as other spouses who are married to our veterans who suffer from PTSD and/or TBI.